One of the key newspaper articles of the last 15 years - not in terms of what happened in response to it, but what didn't - appeared in The Daily Telegraph (which was still pretty much non-celebified to an extent unthinkable for any newspaper now) in the final week of 1999. Praising Ali G - at last, I thought at the time and still think, Baron Cohen's natural fanbase showing themselves - it made one particular reference which sticks in the mind: that the physical movements of rappers were "ape-like". In the early weeks of 2000, it became known that David Irving - about to be permanently discredited even to the mainstream-right figures who had never previously felt able to unreservedly condemn him - had chanted a poem to his daughter in which he equated black people with apes. As little as five years earlier, such endorsement would still have been enough to destroy Baron Cohen's career in the world where he was then operating, and thus prevent him from going any further. But suddenly what had once been the cultural Left seemed unmoved, and continued to play along. It was at that moment, perhaps more than any other, that the legacy of both Blair's erosion of the political principles of the Left and Britpop's abdication of any sense of obligation to keep up with developments in black pop became clear.
I think we should remember that this week, and keep it in mind.