Who IS Godfrey Bloom?
Well, until a few days ago, he was one of the leading lights in Britain’s right wing rabble rousing UK Independence Party.
While Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party, is busy trying to tone down his party’s message, is Godfrey Bloom’s inappropriate behaviour a serious blunder or an underhanded form of publicity?
Certainly for Bloom, it could be considered a Ratner moment as it cost him his position as party whip.
The difference between Godfrey Bloom and his sexist comment and Gerald Ratner’s infamous blooper is that Ratner later realised he had made a mistake. Bloom doesn’t see anything wrong in what he said.
In Godfrey Bloom’s case, he was taking part in a conference in Westminster purpotedly to promote the advancement of women in politics but when push came to shove, his real colours came out. His idea of dealing with women’s issues is to make sure that they have dinner ready on the table when their men get home. As such, when some Ukip female members claimed not to clean behind their fridges, he asserted: „This place is full of sluts!“
He later claimed this was a joke and said that „everybody laughed and all the women laughed“ . Notwithstanding this bullying remark, this claim of Bloom’s reminds me of another Ratner moment which also cost its author a bundle.
In the early 1990’s Gerald Ratner, formerly CEO of the British jewellery company the Ratners Group, made the mistake of saying:
„We also do cut-glass sherry decanters complete with six glasses on a silver-plated tray that your butler can server you drinks on, all for £4.95. People say ‚How can you sell this for such a low price?‘ I say, because it’s total crap.“
…which led him to lose his position and to the company’s near collapse.
Some people might claim that Ryanair’s boss Michael O’Leary also almost did a Ratner when he claimed a few years ago that passengers who turned up at the airport without a printed boarding card were ‚stupid‘, (since they could have printed them earlier at a lower price) but he seems to have got away with it.
The only difference between Godfrey Bloom’s proclamation and that of both O’Leary and Ratner is that the latter two’s comments could arguably be considered to be accurate.
Still, some of us might never have heard of Godfrey Bloom if not for his rowdy and injudicious remarks.
for more on Bloom’s antics read here