Anorak News | Hair Apparent

Hair Apparent

by | 10th, June 2005

‘THE contest to be the new leader of the Conservative Party is like watching the mixed doubles at Wimbledon – few of us care who wins, but you know someone has to.

”Ask not what you can do for my hair, but what my hair can do for you”

Today the Telegraph says that joining Malcolm Rifkind in the leadership battle is Alan Duncan. The shadow transport secretary will be the first openly homosexual man to try to lead the Tories.

He wants to create “a country of liberal economics and liberal attitudes”.

Keen to display his common touch, Duncan compares his party to a falling high street giant. “Marks & Spencer was a fantastic brand in good times but if you have a lousy CEO and lousy knickers you don’t do well,” says he. “Like M&S we need both a good CEO and better frilly knickers.”

The risk of failure is that the electorate will say “knickers” to the Tories.

But it’s not just good underwear that wins hearts and minds. According to a study by Alexander Todorov of Princeton University, anyone who wants to win the popular vote should also have hair, preferably grey, a strong jaw line and a mature appearance.

It’s no use having sound policies, a fearless spirit and a gold thong when you look like an overgrown baby in a suit.

The Telegraph illustrates this point with a shot of William Hague, who, it notes has the “wrong look”. His hairless dome, round face, high forehead, small chin, round face and yellowy Y-fronts mark him out as weak.

It is the electorate and not Hague that needs to down ten pints of beer if such a look is to win the day.

As the Times remembers, after his defeat in the 2001 general election, Portuguese newspaper Diario de Noticias said of Hague: “Never could a bald gnome with a baby face and monkey ears manage to defeat Blair.”

However, studies by Leslie Zebrowitz, a psychologist at Brandeis University, say that baby-faced men are more intelligent, better educated and more assertive than their jaw-jutting counterparts.

They are also more likely to win military medals than their mature-looking counterparts.

Which suggests that the youthful Duncan has little chance of winning the vote, unless he can do as baby-faced Churchill did and thrive in a global war.

Or be seen in a pair of Maggie Thatcher’s old knickers…

Paul Sorene is the Anorak’

Posted: 10th, June 2005 | In: Uncategorized Comment | TrackBack | Permalink