SARAH VINE: My old friend Dom seems hellbent on destroying his former boss - ...

Hard to imagine anyone quite as destructively attention-seeking as Prince Harry, who this week announced the publication of an ‘intimate’ memoir, no doubt detailing the full horror of growing up never having to worry about where the next penny was coming from or how to put food on the table (except, of course, when it’s the servants’ afternoon off).

And yet such a person does exist, and I’m afraid to say his name is Dominic Cummings, former adviser to the Prime Minister, now full-time thorn in Boris Johnson’s side.

I have known Dom on and off for many years, almost two decades, in fact. He is a man of great political passion and possesses a brilliant mind. Too brilliant, sometimes.

Intellectually, he can throw shade on almost everyone he encounters: you have to be seriously on the ball to keep up with him, even when he’s half a bottle of wine down at dinner.

If you don’t know him, his direct manner can sometimes be mistaken for aggression. It’s not, actually; but it’s true, he doesn’t suffer fools gladly. I have no doubt it was this, coupled with an unnerving and very unclubbable habit of telling people the truth about themselves, that made him such a Marmite figure at No.10 and which, ultimately, cost him his job.

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I have known Dom on and off for many years, almost two decades, in fact. He is a man of great political passion and possesses a brilliant mind. Too brilliant, sometimes

I have known Dom on and off for many years, almost two decades, in fact. He is a man of great political passion and possesses a brilliant mind. Too brilliant, sometimes

David Cameron disliked him intensely, famously calling him a ‘career psychopath’, which I always sensed Dom took as something of a compliment (there was no love lost between those two men).

In fact, when Cameron was elected Prime Minister, he didn’t want Dom — who had worked hard in opposition alongside my husband to devise Cameron’s education strategy — to join the Department for Education.

At the time, I couldn’t really see why — but with hindsight, perhaps he had a point. Ultimately Dom’s absolute refusal — or inability — to contemplate even the slightest compromise has made him a very awkward cog to insert into the machine of government.

That said, Dom’s saving grace, I always felt, was that he stayed away from front-line politics, preferring to get his hands dirty in the engine-room of power and leave the shiny Sir Humphrey stuff to others. But something about the past few years, in the aftermath of Dom’s Brexit triumph and the ongoing psychodrama between him and the Prime Minister, seems to have changed all that.

Put it this way: the Dom of old would never have dreamt of doing a sit-down interview with the BBC, Meghan and Harry style. He would have considered it an act of spectacular idiocy.

But then power, or closeness to power (or even worse, loss of it), does funny things to people’s heads, and this Dom is a very different man from the one I knew.

Having watched the whole thing, perhaps the most damaging part of the interview is the revelation of a WhatsApp message thread from Boris to aides, sent on October 15 last year

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Having watched the whole thing, perhaps the most damaging part of the interview is the revelation of a WhatsApp message thread from Boris to aides, sent on October 15 last year

He claims he is not motivated by a desire for revenge; but there’s no denying he seems hellbent on bringing down his former boss — whatever the cost.

Perhaps that’s because, as last night’s interview made crystal clear, he never really considered Johnson his boss in the first place, merely his chosen vessel in the pursuit of power.

Let’s face it, this is one political bromance that’s gone very sour indeed. In fact, there’s something a little alarming in the paranoid — even brutal — way Dom seems to obsess about the new Mrs Johnson, whom he claims supplanted him in the Prime Minister’s affections.

‘Before even mid-January we were having meetings in No. 10 saying it’s clear that Carrie wants rid of all of us,’ he tells Laura Kuenssberg in the interview.

‘At that point we were already saying by the summer either we’ll all have gone from here or we’ll be in the process of trying to get rid of him and get someone else in as Prime Minister.’

It all rather brings to mind that Taylor Swift song: ‘We used to have mad love/but now we’ve got bad blood’, the video for which involved Swift and her chums tearing chunks out of each other. This is, quite honestly, a similarly less-than-edifying spectacle for all parties involved. But it is also more than just a jilted adviser boiling the metaphorical bunny.

Dom has always had an anarchic edge to his character. Properly channelled, it gives him an electrifying edge. But tinged as it now seems to be with resentment, it’s an altogether more toxic kind of energy. He is not only trashing his former boss, he is also undermining the very institution of government — in much the same way that Harry’s recent outpourings devalue the monarchy.

David Cameron disliked him intensely, famously calling him a ¿career psychopath¿, which I always sensed Dom took as something of a compliment (there was no love lost between those two men)

David Cameron disliked him intensely, famously calling him a ‘career psychopath’, which I always sensed Dom took as something of a compliment (there was no love lost between those two men)

Like Harry, Dom is not content to simply turn his back on No. 10 — he wants to burn it to the ground. And all for what? Because it’s hard to see how any of this benefits the nation, or leads us any closer to defeating Covid. It’s just one man and his ego, on the rampage.

Having watched the whole thing, perhaps the most damaging part of the

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