Jacobs Ladder: The Unauthorised Biography of Jacob Rees-Mogg By Michael Ashcroft

Michael Ashcroft ✓ 3 read


Afar vel unnin ævisaga Jacobs Rees-Moggs. Læsileg og áhugaverð. Mæli með henni. Hardcover Rees-Mogg gets a highly sympathetic hearing in this biography due to it being written by a fellow Tory. What the book does confirm is that it’s extremely advantageous in life to have a well-connected father that greased the wheels for every major opportunity Jacob got.
The gullible and stupid, believing he’s an intellectual eccentric, will vote for him in their droves. Those of us that see through the highly constructed facade won’t be backing him in a hurry. Hardcover Watch out how you seat in parliament...

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti... Hardcover Jacob Rees Mogg emerged onto the political stage during the Brexit process, helping to lead the voices of those who insisted that the democratic will of the people be done and Brexit be delivered as we voted for. He is a fascinating and somewhat divisive character, old fashioned in speech, appearance and opinion yet also showing dry wit and an appeal that seems to reach the younger voters which seems somewhat surprising. I can't say that I agree with some of his views on policy but I do find him an interesting man, which is why I wanted to read this book.

It was quite interesting to read about Mogg as a child as he sounds just the same as he is now. He was widely mocked for his manners, speech and appearance but was so comfortable in his own skin that he was never affected by what others said and thought. It must have been good to be like that, to not let cutting remarks and mocking comments bother you. It seemed that others actually admired him for it and some of the teasing became more affectionate than mean. From what I've seen of his son, he seems to be following in his father's footsteps and seems to be just as self assured. I liked reading about Mogg doing his thing on the stock market as a child and his schooldays at Eton. It gives you the impression that he was the same kind of person then as he is now.

One niggle I had was something that seems to appear in most biographies these days. When I read a book, I want to read about the life of that person. The person's parents are I guess relevant as long as it doesn't go into too much detail but do we really need pages about grandparents and great grandparents? It's not really what I want to see but it is just a niggle and didn't affect my rating of the book overall. I would just like to see the family history trimmed down a bit in biographies! I was interested to read about his friendships with Mark Reckless whose name became mud with the Conservatives years later when he defected from them to UKIP over the issue of leaving the EU.

I very much enjoyed when we got into his political rise. I was fascinated to see that he actually stood in 1997 in a safe Labour seat in Fife in Scotland for the Conservatives. I can only imagine the kind of abuse that he got campaigning and it was nice to see that the Labour MP Henry McLeish tried to protect Mogg from the worst of the abuse during the campaign, earning him a letter of thanks after the election from Mogg's father. I was amused by the reaction to him campaigning with the family nanny, for which he was mocked but it is nice to see that the nanny was always viewed as part of the family rather than just an employee and she in turn was certainly dedicated to the Mogg family.

I was surprised to see what a battle he had to get selected for Parliament becaused he wasn't on the list of preferred candidates, due to Michael Howard feeling he had to get a more modern image for the Conservatives moving forward. Two bit pop stars/failed actors with no political background got onto the list because of their popularity and posh Eton educated men like Mogg were being excluded which seems crazy when the Tory leader at the time was posh Eton educated David Cameron! It was an incredible battle between Cameron's people trying to stop him being shortlisted for the Somerset seat and the local officials who were determined to pick who they wanted instead of someone being parachuted in from outside their area! The battle for them to finally adopt Mogg as their candidate was one of the best bits in the book.

There were amusing moments from some of his speeches in the book. I was amused at the story where he held up a bunch of grapes and a pack of fudge and declared 'Sour Grapes and Fudge. That is socialism.' His wit is on display in a few of his popular speeches featured in the book. I would have liked a bit more depth in his Parliamentary career but perhaps another book will come along in the future to look into that. I hope so. One point made by political blogger Tim Montgomerie was that in a fantasy House of Commons, perhaps Boris Johnson would be PM and Jacob Rees Mogg his Leader of the House. The man must have been psychic because both took those jobs this summer.

For those who are UK based, here is a story that might interest you. When Mogg was at Oxford, strippers were invited to an event at the Conservative Association. The young woman picked from the audience to join in the 'show' was the woman who later married the previous Speaker of the House John Bercow-his wife being Sally Bercow, known for her own attention seeking antics. Ironically, the male stripper was John Worboys who became known in later years as the Black Cab Rapist and is currently in jail. Ironic. Overall I enjoyed this biography and I look forward to more books by the author in the future. Hardcover

Jacob Rees-Mogg is one of the most prominent and controversial figures in contemporary British politics. He is a man who divides opinion in his own party, in Parliament and across the country.

An arch-Brexiteer with significant business interests and a large personal fortune, he has long been a vocal critic of the European Union and of Prime Minister Theresa May’s attempts to negotiate a Brexit deal. As chairman of the powerful anti-EU organisation the European Research Group, he has also been a thorn in the side of those seeking to dilute Brexit.

While many people mock him for his impeccable manners and traditional attitudes – he has been dubbed ‘the Honourable Member for the eighteenth century’ – an equally great number applaud him for his apparent conviction politics. Undoubtedly, Rees-Mogg stands out among the current crop of MPs and his growing influence cannot be ignored.

In this wide-ranging unauthorised biography of the Conservative Member of Parliament for North East Somerset, Michael Ashcroft, bestselling author of Call Me Dave: The Unauthorised Biography of David Cameron, turns his attention to one of the most intriguing politicians of our time. Jacobs Ladder: The Unauthorised Biography of Jacob Rees-Mogg