A new book alleges that British Prime Minister David Cameron put "a private part of his anatomy into a dead pig's mouth" as part of a university initiation ritual. This is what the social internet was made for.
The gossip that launched a bevy of hashtags and an ongoing flood of hilarious tweets comes from an unauthorised biography of Cameron by Lord Ashcroft, a wealthy Conservative party member. In a House of Cards-worthy move, Ashcroft felt slighted when Cameron did not offer him an important job after Cameron came to power in 2010, and the biography is his revenge.
The book makes various juicy Cameron claims, including allegations that the PM took drugs at Oxford, where Cameron belonged to a notoriously debauched dining club. And it was a club initiation ritual that supposedly saw the future Prime Minister perform a sex act with a dead pig's head. That's all the internet needed to hear.
#piggate, #hameron, #oink, #baeofpigs, @snoutrage — the British press and social media have taken the pig's head and run with it, while people around the globe are waking up and joining the party. For many the first thought was of the BBC serial Black Mirror, in which the Prime Minister is forced to have sex with a pig on live TV to avert catastrophe.
Black Mirror co-creater and cowriter Charlie Brooker:
Shit. Turns out Black Mirror is a documentary series.
— Charlie Brooker (@charltonbrooker) September 20, 2015
The social internet has exploded with jokes, memes and photoshop manipulations, as well as some now-unfortunate found photos. The are hundreds of thousands of tweets and posts on #piggate, and more than a few good jokes:
— Lynn (@limpet67) September 21, 2015
Cameron with a raging lardon
— CharlieDickDastardly (@charlie_cat_esq) September 20, 2015
— The Stage (@TheStage) September 21, 2015
— JS2 (@___JS2) September 21, 2015
— Rachel M (@Rm_morrison) September 21, 2015
— Kate McGill (@katemcgill) September 21, 2015
— Gerry Stergiopoulos (@GerryGreek) September 21, 2015
"So I ask the Prime Minister, are the allegations true?" "No." "So the media is... telling porkies?" *Corbyn high-fives entire front bench*
— The_No_Show (@The_No_Show) September 20, 2015
1-British PM does a pig 2- Pig gets twitter account. 3- Russian embassy in UK follows pig on Twitter. Welcome to the 21st century. #piggate
— Benjamin Haddad (@benjaminhaddad) September 21, 2015
Yes, the pig now has its own Twitter account, of course.
I ask that you respect my privacy in this difficult time.
— Cameron's Pig (@CameronPig) September 20, 2015
The allegations and subsequent memes have spread so far that the Taiwanese animators already have a vaguely NSFW depiction of the event:
— Taiwanese Animators (@NMAtv) September 21, 2015
People opposed to Cameron's Conservative politics are pulling no punches:
The pig was just a practice run for his plans for the welfare state, amirite
— Helen Zaltzman (@helenzaltzman) September 20, 2015
the thing that may bring me round to piggates credibility is how many tories are coming out to suggest this is a normal part of youth
— CONTROVERSIAL KNK (@AnnieKNK) September 20, 2015
Meanwhile, is Pig Brother watching in the U.K.?
Orwellian control from twitter? #piggate removed from trending in UK after 300,000+ tweets. Never the story it's the cover up.
— LarglenLarry (@LarglenLarry) September 21, 2015
#piggate is a perfect storm of British humour and British politics, and you can spend hours watching the hashtag grow and grow like a prize porcine. Although David Cameron must be having a very bad day, #piggate is the gift that keeps on giving to the rest of us.
I might wake up the kids. This is what the moon landings must have felt like. #piggate
— Mint Royale (@MintRoyale) September 20, 2015