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Gordon Ramsay: just another authoritarian thug

Gordon Ramsay, the ‘outspoken’ celeb chief wants the state to outlaw out-of-season vegetables. I kid you not. That the man is an arrogant little shit has always been apparent from his TV shows but this sort of national socialist volkish crap really does mark him as truly authoritarian.

The TV chef said it was “fundamentally important” for chefs to provide locally-sourced food. “Fruit and veg should be seasonal,” he said. “Chefs should be fined if they haven’t got ingredients in season on their menu. I don’t want to see asparagus on in the middle of December. I don’t want to see strawberries from Kenya in the middle of March. I want to see it home grown.”

The ‘I am’ does not want to see something and so thinks his views should be the force backed law of the land: the psychopathology of the expert that we so often see coming from doctors is at work again. The great unwashed must be forced to follow expert opinion, which means their opinion, naturally.

I like the idea of third world farmers pulling themselves out of poverty and selling me their products whenever I want to buy them and why should a loud mouthed self important chief and a bunch of fascistic green activists get to have a say in that? Their craving to impose their will on others should stop being socially acceptable and they need to be called authoritarian thugs to their faces.

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47 comments to Gordon Ramsay: just another authoritarian thug

  • Ian B

    “The psychopathology of the expert” is indeed the very basis of the progressive/socialist/whatever mindset.

  • Julian Taylor

    Joan Collins had him down to a ‘T’. Ramsay came out of his kitchen to circulate around diners, and presumably have his ego rubbed, only to encounter the formidable Ms Collins and Ramsay’s sworn enemy, the food critic A.A.Gill. From her own column in The Spectator:

    The cult of chef as demigod has been allowed to escalate into sheer madness. The ludicrous amount of publicity given to the recent ejection of A.A. Gill and myself from that damned restaurant, I think proves my point. As Adrian’s guest I found myself in a cramped, overcrowded, poky room, totally devoid of atmosphere. Having ordered from the pretentious menu, we waited 25 minutes for our first course, before being told to leave. Gill’s previous review of one of his former establishments had ‘upset’ the chest. Can you imagine actors taking the same approach towards their critics? On opening nights, a large section of the stalls would be asked from behind the footlights to leave the theatre, or the performance would not continue. I love wonderful food as much as anyone, but these egomaniacs are cooks, for heaven’s sake, not lifesaving doctors. It’s only elaborate, expensive food, not a cure for cancer or Aids or heart disease. I’m no fool; I realize that by telling the newspapers that he’s just thrown Joan Collins out of his restaurant he’s likely to get more column inches than had it been Joan Smith. However, I resent his saying, in one of the many interviews he gave on the subject, that he’d sent me ‘an amazing bouquet of flowers’ and a ‘letter of apology’. These two items, for your information, consisted, of nine (yes, I did count them) small, scentless red roses accompanied by a compliment slip from the restaurant, signed with only his name. Perhaps he thought he hadn’t given me enough time in his restaurant to ask him for his autograph.

  • James Waterton

    Oh, just fuck off and die already, you posturing, self-righteous ass.

    And seriously, what kind of crappy chef limits the culinary horizons of his patrons by insisting on only locally sourced produce? How boring. Go fry a banger and mash a potato, Gordon. Sounds as though that’s all you’re good for.

  • Tanuki

    Ramsay is just a below-stairs food-mechanic with ideas above his station; he needs to remember that catering staff should go about their duties at all times with a suitable degree of diligence and humility.

    I tell the cook what I am going to dine upon, not vice versa. If Gordon has a problem with this we can always get a new cook.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Perry, the trouble is that with all these celebrity chefs, such as Jamie Oliver, Nigella, and the rest, is that we have given a whole group of these preening folk the chance to lecture the great unwashed on how terrible we are in our eating habits. For all that I like to eat food “in season”, I’d greatly prefer to take that decision myself and with the co-operation of my fellows, not to endure some sort of statist nonsense from a loudmouth like GR.

    By the way, in case non-British readers are unaware, Ramsay is part of a current and rather unpleasant UK phenomenon of creating loud, arrogant, extremely rude and vicious TV “personalities”, frequently seen on game shows, “talent shows”, kitchens, and the rest. Let’s consider: Simon Cowell, Ramsay, most of the judges on Strictly Come Dancing…even Jeremy Clarkson can be a nob sometimes. But at least JC does not tell me what to eat.

  • From the article:

    Ramsay, whose London restaurants include Petrus, The Savoy Grill and Maze, added that Britain had become a nation of lazy eaters, following trends and fads, rather than substance.

    Like, say, the local produce fad?

    Perry, the trouble is that with all these celebrity chefs, such as Jamie Oliver, Nigella, and the rest, is that we have given a whole group of these preening folk the chance to lecture the great unwashed on how terrible we are in our eating habits.

    Oh, I don’t know Jonathan, I think Nigella can lecture me about anything she likes. 🙂

  • RRS

    Ian B:

    Hope you will get a chance to go back and read the response (delayed) in the May 6 postings on the subject of “control.”

    RRS

  • Episiarch

    Is Ramsay the dickhead on Hell’s Kitchen who utterly abuses the contestants?

    I’d slug him within five minutes, non-initiation of force be damned.

  • RAB

    Remember the stink from the celeb chefs and the great and good, when on Delia Smith’s latest tv series, she advocated short cuts like tinned tomatos and instant potato?

    Just ignore the dumb fucks. Jamie has already incubated schoolyard entreprenneurs, who are smuggling in the burgers and pizzas to their fellow students, at a nice profit!

    Besides this seasonal thing.

    Suppose you are running a Chinese restaurant.
    What is the season for bean sprouts, bamboo shoots and water chestnuts round here again?

  • Sunfish

    I just microwaved a plate of fish sticks. While they were cooking, I went into the bathroom and screamed insults at the mirror.

    Yep, got that Gordon Ramsay experience down pat. What an asshat. What is he famous for, again?

  • Mr Potarto

    So every time I eat a banana, I’m breaking Ramsay’s Law?

  • MarkS

    Gordon won’t be using oranges or lemons when cooking, then? Does he think before he opens his mouth? Of course he does. He said this steaming heap of tripe because he knew it would get people foaming at the mouth and he gets loads of free publicity. He’s not so stupid – even if his ideas are.

  • RRS

    What ever happened to civility?

  • Frederick Davies

    And what about everyone else? Don’t we get a say too?

    The irate commenter said it was “fundamentally important” for chefs to restrict themselves to cooking. “Chefs should stay in the kitchen,” he said. “Chefs should be fined everytime they appear on TV or try to pass themselves as celebrities. I don’t want to see their tortured faces on TV. I don’t want to have to put up with their cursing and bad manners all day. I want them to shut up.”

    How about that?

  • Ian B

    Thanks for the laugh, Frederick. Great comment 🙂

  • pst314

    “Chefs should be fined everytime they appear on TV or try to pass themselves as celebrities.”

    Heh. Extending your comment, we could argue that Chef Ramsay’s ideas should be outlawed as they belong to 1930’s fascism and therefore are “out of season”. Yes, I know we don’t really want to outlaw speech, but it would be so much fun to watch the chef’s face turn red.

  • RobtE

    There are things worth getting worked up about. This isn’t one of them.

    Of course it was an outrageous thing for Ramsay to say. Why do think he said it?

    These guys don’t operate alone. They have large staffs of publicists, managers, advisers and so on. I very much suspect this whole wheeze was dreamt up by one of Ramsay’s publicists. And it’s worked; we’re talking about it here.

    We haven’t heard much from Ramsay for a while; he’s fading from public consciousness. But then along comes this, just when he’s got a new series of “The F Word” starting, to remind us that he’s still around and still as outrageous as ever.

    It’s a great publicity stunt, especially since we’re the ones spreading the word for him. And for free.

  • I think this describes Gordon Ramsay quite well.

  • James

    I was going to post something, but I think RobtE has everything down to a tee.

    Slightly worrying that the Samizdat have a consistent knack for falling for stunts like this, that are meant to enrage the gullible public.

  • Slightly worrying that the Samizdat have a consistent knack for falling for stunts like this, that are meant to enrage the gullible public.

    Then you clearly misunderstand the situation. This fucker has got national media attention for this garbage and saying nothing is exactly how this sort of thing becomes ‘acceptable’. I do not give a damn if it is a publicity stunt, if that sort of utterance does not generate a hostile response, it only encourages more of the same.

  • Ian B

    Indeed. It may be a publicity stunt but these people are in a position to do real damage. Look how far Jamie Oliver got with his organic school dinners codswallop. These people genuinely believe this irrational rubbish- Jamie Oliver really believes that putting the farming clock back to 1946 is essential, and this idiot really thinks that closing down world trade is essential. They’re cheerleading for an end to progress and a reversion to poverty.

    Should we say nothing? Yeah, that’s worked really well in the past.

  • RobtE

    …that sort of utterance does not generate a hostile response…

    Have you seen the morning papers yet? A pretty thoroughly negative response. Not the least of which is that a bunch of clever clogs have checked out Ramsay’s on-line menus from his many restaurants. Guess what? He doesn’t follow his own advice.

  • Slightly worrying that the Samizdat have a consistent knack for falling for stunts like this, that are meant to enrage the gullible public.

    The problem is that, for instance, the Beeb (that bastion of clear thinking!) has decided this is *actually* worth discussing sensibly, and even had the temerity to run an entirely positively-spun piece on PM yesterday evening. And given this current administration’s tendencies, the idea that one Gordon has suggested to the other yet another Ban does not bode well.

  • James Waterton

    that are meant to enrage the gullible public.

    Your error is in assuming that the public would be enraged. If they were, they wouldn’t be gullible, now, would they? Fact is that large and noisy segments of the population could very likely and enthusiastically get behind this sort of lunatic idea, and before you know it, there’s another law on the books.

  • Frederick davies

    I think Perry and Ian are right: the “background music” can have a profound effect if played for long enough and not opposed. Even if this does not qualify as a “serious” policy proposal, if not opposed, some people will take it seriously.

    Robert Scarth,

    That was priceless!

  • Bogdan of Australia

    Isn’t it amazing how a short, absurd statement made by a CRETIN can trigger an avalanche of wrongly invested emotional outburst? What about ignoring the dupe? I NEVER watch his crap! I eat, drink and f… whatever I want and whenever I wan’t. Well… the last position after some kind of politically correct arragement is made …

  • Jim

    The ones I feel deeply sorry for if this catches-on, are the Zombies.

    I mean, think of it – the plethora of little hitlers and their egomaniacal fads we’re forced to put-up with, makes it clear that brains are NEVER in season in the modern world. So what are the poor zombies to do?

    They’ll starve to undeath! 😉

  • permanentexpat

    A manager’s job is to manage, using every available means to hand. Depleting the means will detract from the results. Voluntary depletion is suicidally bad management.
    As an unreconstructed foodie & competent cook I am grateful for the ‘Füllhorn’ of that which is available to me & that much of it is produced by poorer folk over far horizons whose livelihoods much depend on the fact that I buy what they have to sell. (I do not believe in the ‘FairTrade’ scam.) When I buy delicious coffee from New Guinea I am well aware of the chaotic politics obtaining in that region…doubtless they’ll sort it out before sub-Saharan Africa…but also know that I am, in some very small way, providing a market, previously unavailabe, to an impoverished highlander…although, let it be said, I buy the coffee for me, not for him.
    When I listen to Johann Lafer, I expect to be informed about food & its preparation…about its variety & availability…not that we shouldn’t use rice, bananas, groundnuts, limes, cardamoms, cloves etc…the list is endless…because they don’t grow in Europe.
    Cooks, & politicians it seems, tend to curdle if they take their eyes off the task in hand. (Two Gordons…strange)

  • SteveShark

    Two points that may be relevant here:

    1) He has a new book out

    2) http://lifeandhealth.guardian.co.uk/food/story/0,,2279271,00.html

    Both of which indicate what he really ought to do with his idea (and I use that term very loosely).

  • John K

    It’s time to call the fucking cunt a fucking cunt. It’s the only language he’ll understand. That and a baseball bat in the mouth.

  • For those who think we shouldn’t point out the evilness of such proposals because we don’t want to give the people making them free publicity, I’m reminded that 20 years ago, when the control freaks were focussed on smoking, some naysayers said that the next thing you know, they’ll be trying to tell us what we can and cannot eat. This, of course, was met with cries of derision.

    The naysayers were depressingly right.

  • Rob

    Ban out of season vegetables to reduce carbon emissions? OK. Let’s apply this principle properly.

    No pasta. No rice. No French wine. No Falafel. No bananas. No coffee. No fucking iPods. No villas in Tuscany. No skiing.

    Just cabbage, potatoes, turnips, more potatoes, real ale, scrumpy, rugby, cricket, summer holidays in Skegness.

    Oh, what was that rushing noise, where did the middle classes go? Ah, I understand – the ban will obviously be sophisticated

  • Faye

    Gordon is right. fuck the poor people in kenya! Fucking retard.

  • Sunfish

    Barley is not harvested in May in the United States.

    However, after church I’m starting a new batch. I’ve got a boatload of Maris Otter, a pale malted barley from England, and I’m going to flavor it with Hallertauer and Tettnang hops, from Germany or the Czech Republic. And I’ll ferment it with a San Francisco Lager yeast.[1]

    It’s a big world with all kinds of neat stuff in it for people who only open their eyes. Is Ramsay planning on serving only still room-temperature pale-and-Challenger ale to wash down the, oh, wait, no fish and chips since the cod has to be brought in from Iceland or some such. And there probably ain’t any potatoes being harvested either, so no chips.

    So, what happens when you deep fry turnips and cauliflower? I don’t think I have the heart to try.

    [1] This can go two ways. It’ll be either pure liquid 5.5%ABV genius, or it’ll be more confused than my (fixed male) cat when my (fixed female) dog got amorous with him. We’ll know by Labor Day.

  • Sunfish, actually fried cauliflower is delicious. Turnips, I don’t know… As to your cat: picky picky.

  • …even Jeremy Clarkson can be a nob sometimes…

    As an Archdeacon in the Clarksonian Church of Jeremiah, I shall be reporting this blasphemous heresy to the Lord High Archbishop! 🙂

    As to the Scottish cook, Ramsay, anyone who remains permanently incapable of expressing themselves without always resorting to foul language either reveals that they are suffering from Tourette’s syndrome, with a subsequent need for medical help, or that they have a personal poverty of thinking which only reading, studying, or other home education, could cure.

    However, as we now live in an English culture in which otherwise sensible-looking people wear dreadful pieces of clothing with words like “FCUK” upon them, watch appalling films such as “At Home with the Fokkers”, and read dumbed-down magazines such as “The F-Word”, perhaps people like the mentally restricted Ramsay appear as heroes.

    So well done Mr De Havilland, for pricking the pomposity of this self-aggrandizing Scotsman; and if we are talking about imposing fascist bans of things we don’t like, could someone please get this Ramsay off all of this advertising we are currently subject to, with his wrinkled face and those lips curled into the precursor to yet another foul-mouthed remark? I would be much obliged.

  • We occasionally see Gordon Ramsay’s television programs in Texas, where he selfishly and cruelly prevents locally produced cooking shows from gaining adequate access to television viewers.

    Something must be done…..

    Seriously, regarding Bogdan of Australia’s comment that he eats and drinks whatever he wants, whenever he wants, I wish I could say the same.
    We have tariffs and quotas in place that prevent many imports from entering our market. It’s all done in the name of fairness, protection, and bribery disguised as political campaign contributions.

  • actually fried cauliflower is delicious

    In a light tempura batter of course.

    So tell me, is he really advocating that half the population should be required to come down with scurvy every year? Just prior to first harvest when their labour will be needed?

    Where does the fresh locally produced food come from anyway? Given that the UK is capable of feeding only half the current population. Or is he advocating mass starvation? Both here and in Kenya?

  • Curious George

    than my (fixed male) cat when my (fixed female) dog got amorous with him.

    So how exactly does that work…?

  • Maybe Gordon Ramsay is all the unprintable stuff that has been mentioned above. But just because he said, what he said just now about locally-sourced food, doesn’t mean it is wrong. He did go overboard with the imposition of a fine, but somebody who is as famous as him, should be making such statements, only if to bring it out into the public space.

    And was he really being ludicrous? I don’t think so. Not if we think the ads aired in the US showing SUV owners to be idiots, were great. Not if we think PETA is necessary, or half a dozen other people and organisations like Greenpeace are critical to the survival of the planet.

    I am not saying Ramsay is a green bug. But instead of being very American and shooting down Ramsay for “being authoritarian”, shouldn’t we be getting on his case, and see if he is really all that environment-friendly?

  • But just because he said, what he said just now about locally-sourced food, doesn’t mean it is wrong

    Given that I think my liberty to buy imported foodstuffs whenever I want is rather important, clearly I disagree. And I suspect third world farmers would tend to agree with me.

    And was he really being ludicrous?

    No, not ludicrous, but rather totalitarian. I am not saying he is stupid, I am saying he is evil. He wants the state to impose profound restriction on what sort of food people in the UK can buy and to largely prohibit agricultural trade with the third world, hell, the whole world apparently.

    Not if we think the ads aired in the US showing SUV owners to be idiots, were great

    The ads were not great, they were asinine.

    Not if we think PETA is necessary

    Which it is not.

    or half a dozen other people and organisations like Greenpeace are critical to the survival of the planet.

    Which they are not.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Does Mr Ramsay think it is ok for someone living in Scotland to eat food that is only in season in say, the Highlands? (Assuming they can grow anything much there). Does he favour banning importation of food from England to Wales, or whatever? Just how far does he imagine this self-sufficiency should go? The problem is that no-one ever properly puts these questions to these people.

    The truth is that this man, like many others jumping on the fashionable hatred for supermarkets and global free trade, is a beneficiary of global capitalism. It is precisely because of the wealth made possible by the latter that the Sunday-supplement reading classes can afford to indulge in the old conceits of eating only stuff grown by local farmers. Well great, but Ramsay should not forget that his predecessors did not have that luxury.

    Also, I find it a bit odd that such chefs should trash foreign produce; what the heck do they think they do most of the time? The hypocrisy is ridiculous.

    As a son of a farmer who knows rather more about husbandry than Mr Ramsay, I’d like to point out that the quality of most produce these days is indefinitely greater than ever before.

  • Damn you, Perry; I was thinking of some good things to say to Vivek until I noticed you fisked his comment first. 😉

    The desire to use the power of Big Government to tell people what they may or may not eat is profoundly evil.

    The truly frightening thing is that the chattering classes treat this crap as though it’s well intentioned. No, it’s not well intentioned; it’s all about controlling other people. By the same token, I don’t believe PETA and Greenpeace and other such quangos are well-intentioned, and they certainly have no qualms about suggesting people who don’t believe in their way of thinking to be badly-intentioned.

    And I’m being polite in calling it evil.

  • Laird

    PETA and Greenpeace are terrorist organizations, and I mean that in the literal sense. PETA officials should be in jail, and I wouldn’t shed any tears if a few Greenpeace ships were “accidentally” run over by whalers.

  • PETA and Greenpeace are terrorist organizations,

    Dunno about that, but the only organization on the planet which can make me feel sympathy for Greenpeace is the French government.

    Fundamentally, I regard any pronouncement from Greenpeace as an attempt to mislead. If a Greenpeace spokesman were to announce that the sun was going to rise in the east I would immediately start checking the earth’s rotation. There is certainly no oil company on the planet as dishonest as Greenpeace.

    But as far as PETA is concerned, what is wrong with People Eating Tasty Animals? Sounds reasonable to me.

  • Zarich Catlin-Hallett

    Perry de Havilland! We meet, once again, this time across a crowded fruit bowl.

    On the subject of seasonal vegetables I can only say that I think they taste better. Therefore, nominally, I am on the side of Mr Ramsay. Yes, I agree, it’s lovely being able to access strawberries in January, but they often have no flavour (mind you, neither do I after four hours in cattle class). To make it illegal? No! That’s just dipsy.

    On the subject of “How lovely to see you”, it’s lovely to see you… hope you’re well and thriving. Zx

  • Zarich Catlin-Hallett

    Perry de Havilland! We meet, once again, this time across a crowded fruit bowl.

    On the subject of seasonal vegetables I can only say that I think they taste better. Therefore, nominally, I am on the side of Mr Ramsay. Yes, I agree, it’s lovely being able to access strawberries in January, but they often have no flavour (mind you, neither do I after four hours in cattle class). To make it illegal? No! That’s just dipsy.

    On the subject of ‘How lovely to see you’, it’s lovely to see you… hope you’re well and thriving. Zx