Cameron – Airbrushed for Change

Ridicule is a very difficult thing for politicians to deal with, especially if the politician in question already lacks substance. This explains why the right wing blogs have been going crazy about the spoof adverts lampooning David Cameron, that you can see here.

This is what the founders of say about themselves was built by Clifford Singer, creative director at Sparkloop graphic design agency and creator of the Other TaxPayer’s Alliance website. The website is voluntary and unfunded, and not linked to any political party – nor is Clifford a member of any. Whether you are Labour, Liberal Democrat, Green, Respect, or something so obscure that we’ve never even heard of you – you’re welcome here, as, of course, are members of no party at all.

What? You’re unfunded? I was just about to send you a huge donation.

By all means donate, but donate to Oxfam’s Haiti earthquake appeal instead.

Why hasn’t my image appeared on the site?

Probably because we’ve been inundated – please be patient. Or alternatively because it just isn’t quite good enough – sorry!

Why don’t you put them all up and let the people choose?

We’re hoping to do that soon. Frankly we’ve been caught out by the success of the site and are running to catch up.

How successful have you been?

35,000 visits in the first week. Almost all traffic was word-of-mouth, mainly coming from visitors emailing each other, with sizeable amount via Twitter and Facebook. We were mentioned on Twitter more than 1,000 times, and have received more than 200 poster ideas.

Did you design the first Cameron spoof?

No, that accolade goes to Go Fourth.

Isn’t this just negative campaigning?

Not in the usual sense of spreading slurs about politicians’ personal lives; we’ve tried to keep the humour gentle – in contrast, say, to some of the vicious right-wing attacks over Gordon Brown’s sight impairment disability. There is also a real and valid case for challenging the Conservative politics of “and” – see the links on the home page. You can’t promise massive public spending cuts and suggest everything is going to be fine – at least not without a lot of airbrushing. As some of our posters make clear (though perhaps not the Elvis one), making massive cuts during a recession is entirely mistaken. It will send the economy into further decline causing the deficit to rise not fall as tax receipts reduce and benefit payments go up – see David Blanchflower for more.

We do agree, however, that it’s not enough just to criticise the other side – you need to put forward positive policies. But that’s a task for parties, organisations and other websites.

And finally – and we apologise to any detractors who may have missed this – this site is not in fact entirely serious. That image of the dalek? We’re not really suggesting that Cameron plans to exterminate the entire human race.

Is it true that your founder is “an eccentric figure with a history of quixotic attacks from the left”?

Ah, you’ve been reading “leading right-wing blogger” Guido Fawkes. Very disappointing. Guido, while complaining of negative campaigning, demonstrates Clifford’s eccentricity with a photo of him with his children (cropped out), in Halloween fancy dress. But he who lives by the airbrush… and the blurry image has done wonders for Clifford’s wrinkles.

Guido has also been getting excited that our DIY template – wrongly attributed to the Labour Party – features a Cameron who is even more touched-up than in the original Conservative poster. He calls his story an “exclusive“. We thought it was obvious. Guido’s next exclusive: we altered this image too. Nevertheless, as this site is all about personalisation and choice, we are pleased to announce a new extended range of templates to suit all tastes.

14 comments on “Cameron – Airbrushed for Change

  1. What an utterly absurd line to attack the Tories on, totally devoid of any political content.
    As if every single Labour minister to appear in front of a camera didn’t have make up applied, lighting arranged to give positive effects, hair groomed exactly right for the power image.
    Jeezo New Labour wrote the book on the adoption of the latest media image enhancing tricks in politics.
    And the whole fake outrage about “airbrushing” is just so much nonsense as well.
    I’d imagine “airbrushing” is probably skilful use of Photoshop these days but in the pre digital era photographs were manipulated in the darkroom using dodging and burning, different grades of photographic paper and of course a photographer will manipulate an image at the time of taking using depth of field, different length lenses, combinations of aperture and shutter speed etc.
    But to return to my original point, this kind of rubbish is so utterly apolitical and the reason it is that way is because there is not a shred of difference between Labour and the Tories on the substantive issue of the day; they are both utterly determined that the working class will pay the price for the crisis of capitalism.
    The Tories want to start the offensive tomorrow morning, New Labour want to wait till they’ve all got their noses safely back in the trough.

  2. You are missing the point Eddie, what this draws attention to is the lack of policy substance in what the Tories are saying, and the lack of scrutiny they are getting from the press.

    It also allows peope to make thie own humerous versions to mock cameron.

  3. Maybe I am missing the point Andy, it’s difficult to see what the point is.
    The Tories seem pretty clear on what they want to do, “lack of policy substance” is just political hack jargon that means nothing.
    Anyways, This is one of my own contributions to political posters.
    It shows Thatcher morphing into Blair, it was a huge success in the 2001 elections, just 4 years after Blair had been elected on a tidal wave of hope after the end of the Thatcher years.
    It took just a few years for a huge section of the working class to see before their eyes that New Labour was old Thatcherism given a marketing make over.
    That was nearly a decade ago and to stand here in 2010 and attempt to argue a position that the election of a Tory government in the forthcoming Westminster election would be a calamity of such enormous magnitude that socialists should now promote the inane Tweedledum dum v Tweedledee politics of New Labour v Airbrushed David Cameron is crap.

  4. The key point is that labour since 1997 have attacked the working class and if the tories win, they’ll do the same.

    Whose side is andy on ? Not the working class.

  5. One of the first pieces of legislation by the Tory government, will be to instal a new government freindly censor,and have objectionable material baned from the net.

  6. Silent Hunter on said:

    So are Labour going to be putting Gordons face on any posters LOL

    How did that Scottish comedian phrase it now? . . . “Like someone has painted an unhappy face on a scrotum”

    Although I have to say that I like the one of Dave in the hoodie – Yoo get me?

  7. Silent Hunter on said:

    what this draws attention to is the lack of policy substance in what the Tories are saying, and the lack of scrutiny they are getting from the press.


    If you have to explain it, then it’s clearly . . . not very clear!

    Good old New Labour, everything seems to backfire on them; the Curse of Gordon? hahahahaha.

  8. You find the deliberate feeding of misinformation; doctored photographs and complete lack of political contect amusing then?

    Explains the mess the country’s in then

  9. Thanks for the write-up, Andy.

    Some of the posters are funny, some are serious:

    And, as comment #2 suggests, the issue isn’t the literal Photoshopping of politicians’ faces but the truth behind comforting messages like “I’ll cut the deficit, not the NHS”.

    I thought the text and links on our site made that clear, but perhaps not clear enough for some.