Lord Ashcroft has written an unauthorised biography of Jacob Rees-Mogg – but here is the only take you need
Jacob Rees-Mogg was born in Hammersmith on the 24th of May 1969. His father William, then Editor of The Times of London, was busy eating marmalade and could not be present; nor could his mother, who had decided on a whim to visit a maiden aunt in Weybridge. Jacob has no memory of his birth in Hammersmith but there can be few in Hammersmith who have never heard of Jacob Rees-Mogg – and those who haven’t are probably illegal immigrants.
Soon after his arrival Jacob was whisked out of London to the family home – Ston Easton Park – a modest forty-six bedroom Grade I listed mansion set in a postage stamp 210 acres of sculpted parkland. The Rees-Moggs struggled to get by on an Editor’s salary and a handful of trust funds. There were years when the staff was diminished to as few as eighteen and JRM and his siblings were obliged to muck out their own horses, oversee the cleaning of their own tack and put their clothes on by themselves. Despite these considerable hardships young Jacob – like any child of the nineteen seventies – was an eager venture capitalist. From his nursery wing at Ston Easton his team invested what little he could in share portfolios, farmland in Southern Argentina and the Cincinatti Reds – a baseball team who he inadvertently acquired whilst recovering from a bout of tonsillitis.
Formally introduced to his parents for the first time just prior to his tenth birthday, young Jacob was shocked to discover that his father was ‘in trade’ and worse ‘a journalist.’ The trauma would have killed most ordinary people – but young Jacob was no ordinary person. He was picked up by a valet, dusted down by Nanny and sent off into the world with just his first Bentley and twelve million pounds to his name.
Prep School was not an easy time for the young Rees-Mogg, who was now obliged to ‘mix’ with ‘children.’ Jacob is often portrayed as a man out of touch with the experiences of ordinary British people but it was here that he first came face to face with the real hardships of life – experiences that would shape him and mould his nascent political thinking. To his dismay Jacob found that a good number of his school fellows had just the one barrel to their surname. Reporting the matter to the Headmaster, Mogg was informed bluntly that nothing could be done and that his time could be better spent.
Many of the masters had already taken against Mogg and one in particular – an inexplicably popular French teacher called Monsieur Charpentier – had the spiteful habit of correcting his pronunciation and telling him he had ‘made mistakes’ in his declensions. The bullying meted out by Charpentier would have broken most grown men, let alone a 10 year old boy – but Jacob was made of sterner stuff. He was not about to be told he was ‘making mistakes’ by a musk wearing continental with slip on shoes.
Jacob sold The Reds, bought the school and summarily fired the jumped up frog eating Charpentier before inviting the local constabulary to arrest him on suspicion of being a Napoleonic spy. Lifted high on the shoulders of his fellow pupils he was marched about town for an hour before being thrown from a bridge into a river.
From Prep School he progressed to Eton where Nanny and he both agreed that he did superbly. Tall, neat and arrogant he breezed through the establishment with all the confidence of a young scholar with eight figures in the piggy bank and the gait of a giraffe on roller skates. His habit of changing records at the school disco for Gregorian chants won him many friend (sic) but his genius naturally upset the very many lesser pupils. Unfortunately his insistence on speaking Latin to assistants in shops, or reporting people to MI5 for looking poor led to jealous accusations of ‘stupidity’ ‘arrogance’ and ‘time wasting’ but Jacob had by now endeared himself to the nation by threatening to sue the BBC for its leftist pretentions and there was no stopping him.
Jacob’s arrival at Oxford was a game changer for the establishment which had been languishing in the academic third division for eight hundred years. This was the beginning of a glorious renaissence for the University which had already welcomed the brilliant minds of both Boris Johnson and Toby Young and was soon to witness the arrival of Daniel J Hannan; the greatest thinker of our age. Summoning the President of Trinity to his rooms JRM bluntly informed him that there was nothing he could be taught as he had already made his mind up about everything. But with typical generosity of spirit he promised to attend tutorials anyway – before tipping the Provost a ten bob note and sending him on his way. Mogg became President of the Oxford Conservative Union – where he delighted in wearing more impractical clothes than everybody else – and loftily telling those who had gone to secondary moderns that he was richer than them and therefore right about everything.
He left with a second class degree.
At this point many young men with Prime Ministerial ambitions might have selfishly entered politics – but Jacob was determined once again to ‘give something back.’ And so for almost a decade he altruistically worked for Rothschilds investment bank before setting up his own fund Management firm. Ever one to consider the most deprived in society, Jacob ensured that Somerset Capital Management was generously managed via subsidiaries in the Cayman Islands and Singapore – thus giving employment to some of the most desperate people on Earth.
Having saved the third world – Jacob thought it was time to save Britain from the encroaching EU Nazi superstate and teach the French teacher Charpentier a ‘jolly good lesson’ in the process. The rabidly anti-success Conservative party stifled his ambitions from the get go. Aged just 26 he fought a seat in Fife – where he was ridiculed by ungrateful working class people for brightening up their otherwise insipid lives by campaigning alongside his Nanny in a Bentley. Jacob lost – as the people of Fife – envious of his brilliance – voted in vast numbers not to have him as their MP.
To any lesser man it may have felt like the end of the road – but in fact it was only a beginning of a road to the end of a road.