Tony Hayward - The Brief, Shining Return Of The Classic British Gentleman

In This Section

Vol 46 Issue 50

Julian Assange: Nobody Likes A Tattletale

Although Julian Assange sparked a media firestorm when he revealed thousands of pages of Pentagon reports proving that the U.S. military concealed more than 15,000 civilian deaths in Iraq, that rampant corruption and negligence among private contractors there poses a profound security risk, and that the U.S. State Department continually questions the strength of Russia's democracy, the fact remains that nobody wants to listen to an annoying little tattler.

Mark Zuckerberg - Gotta Hand It To The Little Fucker

No one made as large an impact on how we interact in 2010 as Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who you really gotta hand it to, as much as you'd like to punch the little shit right in his smug, 26-year-old-billionaire face.
End Of Section
  • More News
Up Next
TV Listings
Just Like Everything Else!: Fox 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. ABC Pete's wife is still on him about building that darn shed, these kids are going to be the death of Sheila and Dave, and the hot next-door neighbor is up in EVERYBODY'S business! Sunday nights on ABC couldn't be any more familiar!

Special Coverage

Healthy Eating

Customer Service

Tony Hayward - The Brief, Shining Return Of The Classic British Gentleman

Businessman

Emulating the gallantry, adaptability, and dedication to duty displayed by English gentlemen throughout the imperial occupation of India and decades of adventurism in darkest Africa, former BP CEO Tony Hayward's flip, and often arrogant, response to the Deepwater Horizon's devastating oil spill this April marked, at long last, a shining, highly public return of the classic British gentleman.

Only Hayward possessed the uniquely English unctuousness and resolve to note that the spill—the largest of its kind in North American history—was "tiny in relation to the total volume of water" in the ocean. Nobly disdaining the outrage of shrimp-boat-owning commoners whose petty livelihoods were foundering in muck from the Macondo well, Hayward, like the dukes and regents of yore, dutifully took time off to attend a yacht race, expressing the bitter regret proper to his station in life when his yacht did not win.

As public uproar grew, Hayward refused to lower his standards, and in a moment that perfectly encapsulated the British byword "Keep Calm and Carry On," he declared, without a hint of irony, "I'd like my life back."

A more classic example of British compassion and grace under pressure could hardly be imagined. When little people whose homelands were devastated for generations to come overreacted by demanding Hayward be fired, he put the Americans, Mexicans, and other colonials in their place after his forced resignation by saying that, perhaps if he'd earned a theater degree instead of one in geology, there would have been less outrage from a hostile public. In an era that has seen the U.K. become synonymous with social conscience, humility, and perspective, Hayward represents a remarkable hearkening back to a proud, centuries-old British tradition.

Next Story

Onion Video

Watch More