“DON’T TEMPT US WITH A GOOD TIME” OF THE WEEK
There seems to be something of a confluence of thinking among the foremost conservative minds of our age just now: the exact same “point” was raised by two such prominent figures in the space of a few days.
First to make it was the former completely objective and impartial BBC political commentator while simultaneously being chairman of the Spectator, Andrew Neil. The ex-Big Cheese of GammonBall News penned a fright-piece for Mail Online in which he pointed out that the REAL nightmare scenario for the Tories now is NOT a crushing Labour victory, but rather a narrow one, resulting in some sort of pact with the Lib Dems, in return for which proportional representation would replace first past the post. This, Neil warns, would mean that the Tories – usually mustering no more than about 45% of the vote, even in a landslide – would be kept out of power for the foreseeable future by a Progressive Coalition of Everyone Else.
Such an abomination – a government which ACTUALLY reflected the wishes of the population as a whole rather than just the comfortable rump – could, Neil points out in ominous tones, start to change things. The horror… the horror…
The same warning was sounded, almost word for word, a few days later in Bournemouth, at the inaugural conference of the Conservative Democratic Organisation, convened by those Tories horrified at the sudden leftward lurch into outright communism the party has taken under Rishi Sunak (stop laughing). The speaker was Lord Cruddas, the Tory peer (and, by pure coincidence, generous Tory donor) and stalker-level Boris fanboy. He too, warned that should the dastardly progressives impose PR on the nation, the days of the Tory minority exercising unlimited executive power would be over.
So that’s the Conservative DEMOCRATIC Organisation, railing against the dangers of… well, democracy. Evidently, they’re “Democratic” in the “German Democratic Republic” or “Democratic People’s Republic of Korea” sense.
STRAW-CLUTCH OF THE WEEK
Meanwhile, another attendee at the conference was of course Pinstriped Lurch and Man Of The Year, Jacob Rees-Mogg (the year in question being of course 1845), Jacob Rees-Mogg. JRM, who once, you’ll recall, took an ostentatiously dismissive nap on the front benches in mid-debate, continued to elevate lack of self-awareness to an art form by devoting a chunk of his speech to lambasting NHS doctors for sleeping on the job.
Perhaps still stung by the fact that during his entire tenure as secretary of state for Brexit Opportunities he never found any, the Moggster has, it seems, started plucking Brexit benefits straight from his (limited) imagination. On Sunday, he solemnly informed Sky News’s Sophy Ridge that Brexit has caused Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to founder, because… reasons.
While this is spectacular bollocks even by J-Dogg’s standards, it would almost be nice to think that Vladimir Putin, having been one of Brexit’s most enthusiastic facilitators is now, like every other Bregretter, reading the news with horror and spluttering “but this isn’t what I voted for!!”
Rees-Mogg has since let the cat (o’nine tails) out of the (Gladstone) bag on voter ID, telling yet another conference of disaffected Tory right wingers: “Parties that try and gerrymander end up finding their clever scheme comes back to bite them, as dare I say we found by insisting on voter ID for elections. We found the people who didn’t have ID were elderly and they, by and large, voted Conservative. So we made it hard for our own voters and we upset a system that worked perfectly well.”
He does realise that even us commoners can hear him when he talks, doesn’t he?
SHOCK OUTBURST OF THE WEEK
Maybe Rees-Mogg is ramping up the nonsense because he and other ERGonauts are vocally unhappy about the government’s apparent climbdown over the proposed “bonfire of EU regulations”.
Commons speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle, meanwhile, is incensed by the fact that the decision to drop the plan was leaked to the Telegraph rather than presented to the House, and when this was put to business secretary Kemi Badenoch in the Commons, her glib response elicited a startlingly furious rebuke from the usually placid to the point of semi-consciousness speaker.
This was an extraordinary spectacle, rather like watching Bagpuss lose his rag at Professor Yaffle.
Guys; if even Sir Lindsay Hoyle is angry with you, you really ARE running out of friends.
POEM OF THE WEEK
Every year I make a choice
It’s not a tough decision
I find another thing to do
Instead of Eurovision
Can’t even watch ironically
With snorting and derision
I’m not so snide; I simply hide
Away from Eurovision
It’s not the garish fashions
Nor the continental loons
It’s not the camp presenters
It’s the bloody awful tunes
Straight through the world of pop culture
I’ll make a bold incision
With me left on the one side;
On the other; Eurovision