You never know, some Bulletin readers might have noticed that I haven’t filed my ‘Sunday Politics’ column recently. This is partly because Parliament isn’t in session at the moment and partly because I am on my ‘Holibobs,’ just as the vast majority of Honourable and Right Honourable members are at the moment.
Nevertheless, this hasn’t stopped political life continuing unabated has it? Indeed, just as most of us mere mortals need to take a little time out at times to chill-out, or perhaps recalibrate our busy lives - parliamentarians of every stripe are working themselves up into a right old frenzy over - guess what? In saying this, if you are now unexpectedly tempted to read your star signs on page 27 at the back of this newspaper, please don’t - just, ‘bear with…’ for a moment will you?
As presently configured, Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, is flirting with the idea of swerving around parliamentary precedent by asking the Queen to suspend Parliament so that he can effectively side-step the House of Commons and get his wicked way and have Britain out of the European Union before anyone has the time to cry “crikey” or more likely - “Boris is a dictator - who is attempting an unconstitutional coup.”
Oh dear, what a to-do! I’m very sorry if my rather crude and over simplistic description of BoJo’s intentions grates on anyone’s sensibilities, but I really don’t have the time to go through his apparent cunning plan at the moment - only to say that Mr Johnson assures us all that he only has our best interests at heart and what-is-more if he doesn’t get us out of Europe by Halloween, he will be toast.
Which is absolutely true, because after the 3rd Prime Minister in as many years - the expression “Up s*** creek without a paddle” does indeed spring to mind doesn’t it? You see, we have a slightly embarrassing set of circumstances at the moment, which let’s face it, no political party has emerged so far with any element of dignity or grace intact whatsoever.
Come on, remind ourselves of THAT vote in June 2016 - you know the one, the one that… whatever happens after the EU Referendum, our politicians on both sides of the Leave - Remain debate, forswore that the result would be finite, definitive - “Cross my heart…hope to die.” Well, it didn’t and it wasn’t.
The thing is with democracy, you really can’t pick and choose the bits that you agree with - ‘cos that, I’m afraid - ain’t democracy at all. Anyway, let me argue against those, with whom in general I would have been on the same side - if, only I had had the opportunity to vote on this subject nearly 50 years of paying taxes - another subject perhaps!
As irksome as Boris Johnson’s unseemly political wriggling, we have the equally grandiose showboating by all the opposition parties to contend with regarding Britain’s exit from the EU. Labour for the most part, change their policy on a daily basis; but who can blame them when their Leave constituency heartlands are diametrically opposed to the urban, lefty sophisticates, who run The People’s Party? If BoJo can be accused of underhand scheming, so can the Labour Party - and some!
As for the Tory pro Remainers - they are a dying breed of mostly disappointed patricians, who given the almost hysterical propensity in the Tory heartlands for Britain to Leave Europe forthwith, preferably with no deal - I suspect that not many will survive a thorough-going constituency cull at the end of all this unpleasantness. As for the ‘other’ parties participating in an attempt to halt Boris in his tracks, no one can surely take too much notice of their plaintive pleas for democracy when the object of their angst was supported by the British people 52% to 48%. Indeed, our friends in the Liberal Democrats and their new leader might like to occasionally remind themselves of that fact, if the word ‘Democrat’ is to mean anything.
he argument goes, that so many lies were told during the referendum campaign by those wishing to leave - that the vote needs to be taken again. Really, honestly? Come on please. Are they actually accusing politicians on either side of a political divide of tell ‘porkies’ during election campaigns - Cor blimey, really?
However, I think the most deeply depressing aspect of the continuing turmoil, is the way that Brexit is being debated. If you are in favour of leaving, you instantly become an ignoramus, or even worse - thick, old, racist and probably senile.
The other side of the argument i.e. those passionate to stay with the European Union - must be traitors at least, quite possibly members of a smug and self-satisfied middle-class who care nothing for patriotism, or good-old British values and certainly don’t understand the genuine hopes and fears of ordinary people. You can see that the schism opening up in the visceral dialogues that infects all social media platforms nowadays. No sooner than a pantomime puff-piece, or pic of Boris Johnson - Jeremy Corbyn - Jo Swinson appears (please keep up will you?) the feral abuse begins. It is so predictably depressing.
Take yesterday - Thursday; Facebook advertisements have been placed for the main parties - all a sane person needs to do, is to keep well away from the rabid rants from both sides of the argument to save themselves from infection. Is our ‘Kingdom’ now hopelessly disunited?
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