There will be much razzmatazz tomorrow when the Tories will be temporarily airbrushed out of politics. They will be lucky to have kept a single European seat. Farage will strut the stage behaving more and more like a pound shop Mussolini demanding that he has a seat at the negotiating table. In your dreams son. And many of the corporal Jones ‘don’t panic wing’ of Tory backbenchers will beg for it. Beg for some sort of alliance, some sort of deal. Beg for anything that will save their own miserable skins. And in their terrified little eyes the mists part and they see the glorious apparition of their saviour St Boris. The twisted logic is this. Farage is a thoroughly dishonest populist shit whom, despite his background, gives the illusion of being a man of the people. Who better to beat him than another dishonest populist shit, whom despite his background gives the illusion of being a man of the people. Boris is top of the shit heap. He is the shit’s shit that not even the shits dare trust.
The trouble with Boris is Boris. Discuss. Well, let’s not, best left to the Sunday papers. Let’s just remind ourselves what former Telegraph editor Max Hastings, wrote about his star writer in the Mail in 2012.
“Gold medal ego maniac.....rather more ruthless and nastier figure than the public appreciates....much given to making threats, bearing grudges and behaving with malice aforethought”.
“He is not a man to believe in, to trust or respect save as a superlative exhibitionist. He is bereft of judgement, loyalty and discretion. Only in the star crazed frivolous Britain of the 21 century could such a man have risen so high and he is utterly unfit to go higher still”.
But a word of warning to the Borisistas. No front runner for the Conservative leadership has EVER won. And Scotland, which holds what is left of the government together loathes him. Then there are the DUP. They are a hard nosed bunch who will run rings round him. They live and breathe the Old Testament. They probably regard Boris as some sort of blonde abomination. They will do business is the price is right.
Desperate Tories who secretly despise him see him as a lifeboat, yet haven’t spotted that it is holed below the waterline. The ERGS see him as a useful idiot. They will put him there to do their bidding and if he refuses they will make life impossible for him. He who giveth can take away. And it would not be an idle threat. I remember when John Major was first installed in Number 10 one of his first visitors was Sir George Gardner, a cadaverous man with the smile like the brass plate on a coffin. If there was a gun fight at the OK Corral George would be the man with the tape measure. The meeting went like this.
“Good morning Prime Minister. Many congratulations”.
“Thank you George”.
“You have our support and good wishes. However, a gentle reminder, if you don’t things our way there could be difficulties”.
“Oh, fuck off George”.
An important lesson in history is that the Tory right never want to compromise. They will take no prisoners. They will destroy everything in their path, whether it be the Prime Minister, the government or the party. If you feed the beast they will want more. Eventually, the beast will consume you. They are the standard bearers of the True Path. Everyone else talks heresy. If any of you read Terry Pratchett the ERGS would be the Grags.
Another lesson is that when the main parties implode it lets in the extremists. The United Kingdom has never been in greater peril. And we will be leaving the decision of who ‘leads’ us to a group of greasers and chancers who are as terrified of the selectorate as they are of the electorate. They will be threatened, bribed, lied to and mislead by the candidates. Rule changes will be demanded of it looks like he won’t be in the final two. Who will be the first to call for a shortlist of three or four. Backbenchers are like meerkats sniffing the wind to see which direction it is blowing. And like meerkats they have cannabalistic tendencies. But only when it is absolutely necessary. They only have real power during a leadership elections. A tiny window of opportunity to move up the greasy pole.
Like all leadership elections it is always good sport to see who will sell their souls first. Johnny Mercer, that great man of principle and independence of mind has told us that he is not yet ready to become Prime Minister, which was almost as unexpected as when Christopher Biggins came out of the closet. Our Johnny, is well known as being slightly bonkers and a complete arse. But the wonderful news is that he has hitched himself to Boris’s stardom. God knows what he has been promised. He has told us that he has had one to ones with the great man. Wow. It’s all rather sad.
I hope someone in the press is keeping tabs on what jobs Boris if offering. By my estimate we have about four Chancellors and four Foreign Secretaries.
There is a universal truth that I hope backbenchers appreciate. That if they want to beat Corbyn they have to travel to the centre right and no further. They have to reach out rather than secure their base.Tories lost 5 million voters who voted remain. They need them back. And we are polling 4 percent of the youth vote. Scary. But instructive.
The other truth is that they have to restore competent government. That’s why my money is still on Michael Gove who, very sensibly, is keeping his powder dry and his mouth shut. For the moment.
The terrible thing is that the general public are confident that as parliament has made it clear that they do not support No Deal then that’s the end of it. Oh, no says the silkily smug Mogg. A motion cannot repeal legislation. And he is right. These guys are running down the clock. The deadline is 31 October. They just want to get us out and damn the consequences. The best we can hope for is another extension. Who will have the courage to ask for it? Who will have the courage to tell the simple truth, namely that we are committed to an orderly withdrawal from the EU and that the CBI is correct ins saying that crashing out will be a disaster for jobs and the economy? I can almost hear the tinny voice of Steve Baker with all the warmth of a speak your weight machine, saying, ‘then so be it”. Madness is the new black.