Monday, 5 August 2013

Earl of Cardigan needs my help.



I am a little disturbed by the story I read in the Daily Mail regarding the Earl of Cardigan who is so hard up that he and his pregnant wife are living on just £71 a week.  Goodness knows what they will do when the baby arrives.  What is particularly disturbing to me about this story is that I recognise the Earl.  My mate David!  Well not like that.  I don't recognise him because I know him or have ever met him but I recognise the person he appears to be.

Savernake Lodge
The article: The aristocracy's first benefits baby: Hard-up Earl of Cardigan announces he's having a baby that he'll bring up on £71 a week... in a house with no heat appeared in the Daily Mail today (4 August 2013) and I don't know what drew me into reading the story but I read it with intrigue from beginning to end.  Currently I hate the government and all rich people because they are smug self-satisfied ignorant self-serving bastards.  (I wonder how many people do that - have a range of perspectives and emotional takes on situations.  There must be a lot because I do it and I am human and most people are human (or at least start that way) and the evidence supports the notion.  Artists, playwrights, comedians and I guess trolls, too, all do it.  There are many people I know who do it as well.  The reason I have gone off on this tack is because so often people pretend they don't.  In the moment of a conversation or communication people will often act surprised, and even offended, if you express an 'artistic' view of the world, as if they had never considered such a position.  But that aside and back to David -) I can't help wondering what life is like for him and if I shouldn't rush down to the Savernake Lodge, where he currently lives, and invite myself in for coffee.  He is 60 years old and his wife, Joanne, is 48.  This is a bit late to be having a new person to look after but they both look fairly healthy in the photos.  In fact he looks like I could imagine I could have looked if I had not fallen on hard times.  But then did my 'hard times' start when I was born?  But then - did his?

I have been to champagne parties at the Savoy and rubbed shoulders with rich celebrities, eaten out at the Enoteca Pinchiorri (one of the most expensive restaurant in Italy) in Firenze (or Florence to you plebs), slept in disused railway stations, worked on a salt caked rust bucket of an old British coaster, lounged on the beach at Club 55 (Bridget Bardo's favourite hangout) after an exotic seafood lunch watching the millionaires come and go from their exorbitantly priced gin palace yachts, (maybe I should write a book)... I've walked through the incredible Samari√° Gorge, visited Christ on the Corcovado mountain and been arrested for crimes I've never committed.  Life can have a way of being quite variable.  So I sympathise, in a way, with the poor Earl.

Battle of the Beanfield 1985
So I delved deeper into his story and found he was the 'class traitor' I admired for standing up to the authorities in what is now known as the Battle of the Beanfield in 1985.  Basically the police violently attacked a camp of new age travellers.  It was disgusting and another human travesty but you can read all about the details yourself if you are interested.  The significant point is that David had followed the convoy and witnessed the appalling brutality of the police.  It could have been primarily his testimony which prevented the authorities from getting away with this crime scot free.  Of course the perpetrators will not have been made to put right the harm they did nor will they have been proportionately dealt with but at least history records this as a crime by the police against innocent people.  David was shocked to witness a heavily pregnant woman being "clubbed with a truncheon." and testified to that effect.  He has also said since then that "Seeing police beat a pregnant woman does poison your view." and he has been somewhat less in favour of 'authority' ever since.

The funny thing about this David (David Michael James Brudenell-Bruce if you want his full name) is he seems naive.  But it doesn't seem quite straight forward.  It appears that he split up with his wife and was seriously distressed by that.  He went to America and met his current wife in a 'trauma resolution clinic'.  He had left his estate in the hands of a couple of people as trustees but on returning home found they had been selling stuff off and refused to return control to him.  There was a lovely incident reported in the Mail Online under the title "The Earl of Cardigan and an unseemly exchange of insults over his ancestral heirlooms at country home" which outlines a violent disagreement between David and one of the trustees, a certain John Moore.  I can't help but feel, with everything I have read, that John Moore is a devious, right wing, money grabbing, upstanding pillock of society.  I can't help feeling that David is straddled between two boats that are slowly drifting apart.  On the one hand he is human - he was upset by his wife leaving and attended a trauma clinic seeking resolution, he was upset, even indignant, at the police brutality and stood up for the victims, he appears delighted at the idea of having a baby - but on the other hand he has inherited the position of the aristocracy.  I mean, by that, not only the material inheritance but the psychological inheritance as well.  For some reason neither of his children will speak to him, he is clearly in a complete mess when it comes to dealing with his affairs (material and legal ones), and in spite of his personal experience of the hierarchy, the law and the authorities, he still wishes to send his new child to Eaton!

I don't think he understand that he has one foot in each of two incompatible camps.  I think his slight confusion as to why his friend of 20 years, John Moore, should turn against him is his naivety about what authority, hierarchy, and the law are all about.  In an article in the Independent he says Moore's motive in turning against him is hard to fathom and he imagines it could be down to delusions of grandeur.  He says "He has a brand new Land Rover and wears a green suit, wellies and a Barbour – everything a country squire must have."  I think David still believes what they 'say' they are all about.  I was brought up believing they were what they pretend to be but have found it to be otherwise.  Of course they are benign, IF and only if, you are subservient and agree with them.  But they are necessarily on top.  Necessarily because they want to believe themselves to be right and want to perceive themselves as protectors of justice.  It is complex and convoluted but that is why the Spanish Inquisition could happen and a Pope, who supposedly 'believes' in a God of the poor, can live as one of the richest men on the planet.  These people make excuses (St Augustine and his justification for war!) for their evil deeds in the name of protecting ideals.  But the irony is that they therefore do not believe in, or live by, the ideals that they imagine they are supporting.  And, of course, there are many hypocrites who simply feign belief in truth and justice so long as they get richer by doing so.  David seems conflicted in this respect and if that is the case I entirely sympathise with him and really wish he would make his bloody mind up before he dies.


So if you are out there David and reading this just give me a ring and I will pop over for coffee and we can have a long philosophical chat about this.

The way I see it is I don't have a house to live in and I have to survive on less than £50 a week and have virtually nothing behind that.  David is in similar straights but has a multi-million pound estate behind his plight.  Maybe we could work something out.  Go on David - give me a ring.

20 comments:

  1. Fascinating stuff. Only one huge error that damages the author's argument - I did NOT say that my child would be put down for Eton; the journalist has now apologised for putting that in.

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    1. Thank you for the comment. I (Sam Spruce [pseudonym as it is]) am the author and am pleased you have corrected that mistake. It is possibly the key fact that suggests you are, in fact, the Earl and not a troll. But from this end you will understand that it is very hard for me to be sure.

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  2. Extra comment. John Moore is a liar and a thief, having taken £115,000 from my Estate (having promised to take nothing), while he refused to send $14/week to my Doctor in the States who wrote to him saying that the $14 medication for me was a "medical necessity".

    And he DOES have delusions of grandeur. Having got the position by telling me for 30 years that he was a Barrister, it now turns out he is a Clerk in a Barristers Office. Yet when my elderly in-laws flew in to the UK to see Tottenham House, my empty family home, Moore turned them away. Lowlife.

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    1. From what I have gleaned to date I am tending to agree with you. I was serious about the coffee. I am trying to confirm that you are who you purport to be. You could always email me from the contact page on Toxic Drums and then it isn't so public - not that many people read this blog anyway.

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  3. Thank you for your blog. As a Mohawk living in Canada I know something about displacement from ancestral lands. I, too, was profoundly affected by the Daily Mail article. My English ancestors served with his under Henry VIII almost 500 years ago. In honour of that alliance I would like to know where I can send the Earl and his wife a traditional Native baby gift. If you can post a mailing address it would be most appreciated.

    (I know this post sounds a little crazy but I assure you I am quite serious.)

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    1. Given that all I can do is look it up on the internet I would have thought you could too. However, since I did and since it is freely available I don't suppose there is any harm in putting it in here. Maybe he'll get some more presents this way :)
      David Brudenell-Bruce
      Earl of Cardigan
      Savernake Lodge
      Ashlade Firs Road
      Savernake
      Wiltshire
      SN8 3HP
      United Kingdom

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    2. Thanks for this. I did look it up but its an address style that would not work in Canada, just wanted to be sure. Thanks again.

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    3. Of course it would. The Canadians simply ship it to the United Kingdom and then the British Post Office delivers it to the British address.

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  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  5. I am the disgruntled ex husband of Catherine JoAnne, the ASSHOLE earl's new wife. David Brudenell is a bombastic liar, a thief (from his own son and estate), and a genuinely distrustful and disgraceful excuse for a human being. He has no ethics, scruples, nor integrity whatsover. I applaud those who stand up to this ASS calling himself a man...... He DESERVES what , and every, hardships that life can throw at him. If the author from Toxic drums cares to speak to me, after reading the original 2007 article in the Daily Mail. I would be happy to spend some time filling in the bits and pieces. Brudenell's own grown children won't talk to him or have anything to do with him - - - wonder why ?

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    1. Perhaps I come a little late to the conversation, but I can categoricaly state that "the impoverished Earl" did not survive on £71 per week, but made a rather fruitful living as a self employed van driver. Given, the hours were not guaranteed, but it still remains that he was lucky to not have been reported to the benefits office.Yet.

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  6. Great picture of the policeman on horseback - who took it?

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    1. I hate the phrase "lol" but it comes to mind. I have removed the great picture of the policeman on horse back and sent you an email. Thank you for drawing my attention to its provenance.

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    2. I am just a humble traveller, and I remember the beanfield. As an anarchist I don't have a lot of respect for the aristocracy, but this man stood up to Babylon, gave us sanctuary when we needed it most and the plod wanted to "finish the job", he spoke truth amidst all the lies peddled at Westminster in spite of the public ridicule he was subjected to for his words and for these things he will forever have my gratitude and respect. I wish him well, and hope he knows that there is a lot of love for him out there among those of us who still remember those dark days, regardless of the polar opposite ends of the class system from which we come, he is a good man. 30 years on I'm still on the road and the anger still burns strong, I will never forget or forgive, and I don't think the Earl will either.

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    3. Thank you Rob for that. It is good that people speak up and tell it how it is. Hope you are well in your travels.

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    4. Cheers, ups and downs as ever, it's never a dull life :o)

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  7. Do you know I'm really appalled at some of this. I've emailed the earl a lot recently and he has been nothing but polite to me. My life as a child I didn't have an aristocratic life.I went to a convent,rode,did Ballet. I class myself as middle class,at 7 we lived in a six bedroom house,had a nanny take me to school and then we lost what money we had in a bad investment. I am now happily in a relationship for the last 7 years with a man of working class and money doesnt always bring happiness.I habe had opportunities with officers in !y younger years (I am 40 now) so had plenty of time to get a good husband and well off but I want to be loved not in a sham marriage,like a few mummieson the school run at my children's school in the Sabernake forest. So please don't give people a hard time! We all fall sometimes. I know no one where I have moved to on the village near Marlborough and David's kindness has brightened my door. No one ever knows the truth about family history and its none if our business really is it ???

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  8. My typos are numerous but I was rushing to get this published for you reading this

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  9. Actually my grammar is quite atrocious above also..oh dear !!!

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