He surely deserves better ….
Before I get to the ‘news’, here’s one piece from last night, for you to giggle over. The Glastonbury organisers really went and did it! They really had Mr ‘e give a video message to the festival goers (link). When the DM’s Robert Hardman calls this thing ‘as middle class as the olive counter at Waitrose’ (link) then you know who the people are who go there. You also know why this thing isn’t ‘British yoof’ any longer but a tribal ritual for the kids and parents of the posh Westminster ‘elites’ who believe they are ever so ‘working class’ and ‘rebellious’. After all, ‘tis an event where ‘royalty’ in the form of Princess Beatrice and Mz Angela Rayer can rub shoulders. Oh – and they did shout that ‘this is a work event’, taking a dig at the PM.
Back to the ‘real news’ as displayed in this morning’s dead-tree MSM front pages (link). As expected, the headlines are a variation on ‘Johnson must go’ and ‘Tory rebels plot’. There are also some reports on the decision of the US Supreme Court to strike down the abortion law ‘Roe v Wade’. No, this doesn’t ‘forbid abortions’, it only gives back to the states (the USA is a federation) the right to legislate on this issue. As predictable, the uproar in the USA is huge.
It must be really, really important for us here in the UK as well because, as if by magic, news of that war, where real people actually die – men, that is, and generally white men – have vanished from the front pages. Only The Times has one (!) article accessible via their front page. This is a report about the Ukrainian forces having – finally – been ordered to retreat from the Severodonetsk/Lysychansk area:
“Ukraine’s forces have been ordered into full retreat from Severodonetsk as the city has been “nearly turned to rubble” by intense Russian shelling. Serhiy Gaidai, the regional governor, announced the withdrawal this morning following weeks of fierce fighting in the battleground eastern city.” (link, paywalled)
Note that the name of the “general commander in chief, Mr ‘e” who ought to have ordered this withdrawal last week, has artfully been omitted. Note also that there’s no word of the huge cauldron a bit further South. You should be able to access the official site of the Russian Defence Ministry where a general report was published yesterday (link), with another added last night (link).
I’m sure I won’t need to mention that of course, these being Russian statements, we cannot possibly believe what they say. If you want to learn from the ‘masters’ how to spin this withdrawal, read this article in Reuters which is, as we all know, not a state propaganda outlet.
Meanwhile back home, where the Glasto crowd mocked the PM, we get to read a bit more about those ‘Tory rebels’. If you think that there are a lot of ‘friends of the Big Dog’ in the broadsheet newsrooms you’d be correct. There’s the spin regarding the resignation of the Tory party chairman Oliver Dowden, according to which ‘he jumped before he was pushed’, and that he did the jumping in order to help his friend Sunak in his campaign to become Tory Party leader (link, paywalled).
Hang on a minute: isn’t that a bit premature? After all, Johnson is still PM and has vowed to continue:
“Johnson played down the significance of the defeats, saying that parties in power tended to lose mid-term elections. He said it was “fine” for people to “beat me up” but he wanted to “get on with the job of delivering”. (link, paywalled)
Delivering what? Less inflation? Scrapping his, or rather Carrie’s green crappery? Does he really believe that ‘delivering moar weapons’ to the Ukraine is still a vote winner? Two former Tory Party leaders who have personal experience in leading a party destroyed by a disastrous PM – that’s John Major who is suddenly rather silent – had some advice to the PM, the Cabinet and by extension the Tory MPs:
“Two former Conservative leaders — Lord Hague of Richmond and Lord Howard of Lympne — said cabinet ministers should put pressure on Johnson to resign. Hague told Times Radio that the Conservatives were “potentially heading towards disaster” with a “tremendous loss of faith among party activists as well as voters”. Howard told The World at One on BBC Radio 4: “The party and more importantly the country would be better off under new leadership. Members of the cabinet should very carefully consider their positions.” (link, paywalled)
Indeed they should, especially when another of BJ’s ‘spend money I don’t have’ story got into the DM:
“Boris Johnson wanted to build a £150,000 treehouse fitted with bulletproof glass for his son at Chequers but was forced to scrap the plan after ‘police raised security fears’, it has emerged. The Prime Minister reportedly wanted to use money from Conservative donor Lord Brownlow to build the luxurious playhouse for his son Wilf.” (link)
I’m quoting this gossip because it illustrates that BJ and Carrie live in the rarefied spheres of cloud cuckoo land, to such an extend that they might as well tell us to ‘eat brioche’ (that’s the historically correct expression!) They cannot conceive that they’ll not be able to live at Chequers for the rest of their lives. I suspect it was Princess NutNuts who wanted this tree house. BJ asking a Party donor to give him that money doesn’t make this better.
So how, you might well ask, are the ‘Tory Rebels’ going to oust Johnson? After all, he just survived that ‘confidence vote’ at the 1922 Committee, a vote which cannot be taken again until a year has passed. Well, there’s this:
“MPs who want to remove the Prime Minister are seeking election to the 18 most senior posts on the 1922 Committee, which dictates how to conduct confidence votes in Tory party leaders. […] Under 1922 Committee rules, another vote cannot be held for a year. However, rebels want that rule scrapped. The regulations can be changed at any time by a simple majority of 10 out of the 18 senior 1922 Committee figures.” (paywalled link)
Oh – clever, innit like! They ought to get a move on though if they’re serious because the HoC will soon go into their ever so well deserved recess, that’s summer holidays for you and me. Of course, the ‘friends of Carrie and the BigDog’ in that perty aren’t going to take this lying down:“Loyalists are also mobilising to elect members who would block a change.” (link, paywalled)
Meanwhile, a certain Mr Baker is doing a very careful balancing act, knowing full well that being labelled as one of the major knife-wielders won’t endear him to the MPs and the Party foot soldiers:
“Baker is said to have rebuffed appeals from rebels to organise against the prime minister, but last night urged the cabinet to act against Johnson. “Like so many backbench MPs, I am looking to the cabinet for leadership,” he said.” (link, paywalled)
Good grief – a ‘rebel’ looking for ‘guidance’ from some ‘higher-ups’ in Cabinet? Well I nevah! Come the autumn, Tory MPs still fighting to the death will only make more voters turn to Labour, the masters of tactical voting (e.g. here), with Labour having been desperate to get Starmer into N0 10 for the last few years.
A Labour victory would deliver us something else: a return for Remain, cosying up to Brussels just at a time when that crumbling edifice shows daily that it’s a monetary black hole, not delivering anything for the EU ‘citizens’, and just at a time when the Ukraine has become a ‘EU Membership candidate’.
Well, Johnson ought to’ve gone to Glasto rather than Rwanda, for a ‘double bill’ with his friend, Mr ‘e. The crowd would’ve loved him for that, surely! Perhaps, come the autumn and winter, we might be spared having to watch more ‘performances’ by those two ex-comedians, currently still PMs of their unfortunate countries. Now that’s something to hope for!