“Twitter is basically a video game. An RPG ‘shoot’em up’ in which you try and gain as many followers as you can by portraying a persona loosely based on your own.”
Every five minutes, you’ve got a Young Tory shooting off on Twitter about something new. One minute, it’s to do with an MP or Cllr who appears to be getting a bit too “hands-on” with the YC activists. The next thing you know, we’ve got them all thinking they are the infamous Tom Harwood or Darren Grimes. But this time, with their not-so-insightful political commentary.
It’s becoming clear that Tory Twitter is in a constant state of flux. Lurking in this youth politico play pit are the types of individuals who see themselves going to University, getting pissed and then graduating with a 2:1 in Modern History. After this, they aim to find themselves stumbling into Portcullis House as an assistant caseworker / research assistant to a backbench nobody.
That’s right! All these wannabe Rees-Moggs and aspiring BoJos aren’t spending their time ‘shooting up’ in the local wreck. Instead, they are dreaming up new ways to grab the rest of the political community’s attention on Twitter.
They long to create youth pressure movements that could launch them into political stardom. They crave the coveted ‘blue tick’. A symbol for all Young Tories that, if you can ever reach the heights of Harwood or Grimes, then your career is sorted.
But is it all worth it? Well, I certainly don’t know. I’m neither a Young Tory nor a member of the blue tick brigade.
However, if you take some time to actually assess what I’ve just said: it’s a ‘blue tick’ on a social media platform that, yes, is a handy instrument in both political communication and journalism. But it bears no real relation to what it means to be a politician, or how to deal with the issues of real, everyday people.
I write this not because Tory Twitter is infested with individuals with no principles. I write this because, from what I’ve witnessed, there are clearly some people in the Young Conservative movement who think they are God’s gift.
I genuinely believe that some have adopted a ‘Messiah Complex’ mentality. A mindset where they believe all of their 5,000 followers actually do hold a shrine to them at their bedside. Tory Twitter is not real life, but it is jolly good fun to laugh at.