Cameron’s remark on the death of top Tory, David Shale, at the Glastonbury festival:
David Cameron said that a “big rock in my life has suddenly been rolled away” after a senior Conservative was found dead at the Glastonbury Festival.
Now, this image of the big rock having “been rolled away” – that’s the image of the rock being rolled away from in front of Jesus’ tomb. It’s from Luke chapter 24, verses 2-3:
But they found the stone rolled away from the tomb. Then they went in and did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.
So it’s sort of a resurrection image, except that the police (unlike the women with the spices in Luke) did find a dead body. Also, in Cameron’s reworking, Shale isn’t the body, he’s the rock. So who is the body-that-wasn’t-there? Cameron describes Shale as the “big rock in my life” – so the only person who is “living” within the metaphor is Cameron himself: is the implication that Cameron is, at some level, the resurrected Christ?
But to return to Shale: “shale” is, of course, a sort of rock – namely “a fine-grained, clastic sedimentary rock”, but it’s silt-like. You couldn’t roll it, even if you wanted to. The successful rolling of shale would indeed be a miracle.
One last thing. Like the police at Glastonbury, the women at the tomb “were greatly perplexed”, but the event is transformed when the angels arrive to explain what’s happening, from being a source of perplexity it becomes a source of joy & triumph: “He is not here, but is risen!” And later in the chapter, Peter ‘marvels’ at the empty tomb. It is, after all, first proof of the resurrection. So there is a deeper, more disturbing suggestion that the death of this inner-circle Cameronite, whose leaked memo describes his fellow Tories as “graceless, voracious and crass”, is a source of not of confusion & grief, but of joy…