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Tony Grist

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A Bit Of A Ramble- Rather Like One Of Johnson's Speeches In Fact [Sep. 9th, 2019|08:47 am]
Tony Grist
"How are you this morning?" asks Ailz

"Cold," I say, as I struggle into my body warmer.

"Then you'll have to shut some doors, won't you," she says.

"But the cats like to go in and out," I say.

"Well they'll have to get used to not being able to," she replies.

I've seen the weather map. There's a big blue meanie sitting over our quarter of Kent. I seems as though we're going to have rain all day.

I keep starting to write a piece about the state of British politics and then giving up. The situation is at once so complicated and so simple. The new Prime Minister and the parliament he no longer controls are playing a game of tic-tac-toe- one makes a move, the other blocks the move and so ad infinitum- (because no-one ever wins or loses at tic-tac toe once they've worked it out.) Meanwhile EU officials cast a cold eye and say "actually you're exiting on October 31st, deal or no deal- so there." I cast around for a metaphor and John Davidson comes to my aid, "It's playing bowls upon a splitting wreck."

Thank you, John, that'll do very nicely.

I read a piece in the NY Times this morning because I thought it might be gainful to see what outsiders think. The Times compares Johnson to Trump- and says he's taking advantage of the woolliness of the British constitution to do things that are at the very limit of whats legal and politically acceptable. For instance he gave a speech in front of a backdrop of massed police cadets which was supposed to be about funding but turned into a party political rant- which was terribly unEnglish of him- and the sort of thing American presidents and foreign dictators do regularly but British PMs don't- only nowhere does it say in writing that they can't. The effect was somewhat spoiled when one of the cadets- who'd been on her feet for an hour and unlike Boris didn't have a lectern to lean on- went all wobbly and had to sit down. So far, so Boris. Remember how he got stuck on a malfunctioning slip wire with a helmet on his head and a miniature union flag in each hand? Things keep going all slapstick on him but it never seems to matter. The bumble is factored into his act; it makes him seem harmless.

Does he want a No Deal Brexit? I rather think he does. Why? Because a crisis will give him the chance to remake the nation in his own image. Is he up to the job? Probably not. Will he survive long enough to bestride the narrow world like a colossus? Again, probably not, but who can tell?

Meanwhile the party he supposedly leads is falling apart like an old flivver with Oliver Hardy at the wheel.

[User Picture]From: davesmusictank
2019-09-09 11:39 am (UTC)
Bumbling is the least of his worries. He is reckless I think. Time for Bris to wring his hands, and say "Sorry you have the wrong guy for this." and then maybe he will not.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-09-09 12:21 pm (UTC)
Reckless, yes. I think he believes he can make it up as he goes along...
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[User Picture]From: heleninwales
2019-09-09 02:06 pm (UTC)
It's Cummings who's behind this. He's playing the British constitution like a computer game and seeing what the code will let him do. Johnson is just his puppet/figurehead.

Cummings isn't even a Tory. He's just doing this for a lark, to see if he can win, but it's not a game and people will die if we crash out of the EU without a proper deal.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-09-09 02:33 pm (UTC)
Boris himself has seemed all at sea recently- campaigning for an election the Commons won't let him have.

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[User Picture]From: matrixmann
2019-09-09 11:48 am (UTC)
If I pull the strings together, as far as my memory serves me: He tries to create - or rather: already made it - to materialize a PR coup from the textbook. Brexit is a product of the Tory party (under Cameron's reign) wanting to press Brussels into granting them more exceptional treatment. But the thing about this is that it went wrong; it was completely a bluff that actually should never be turned into reality. But the referendum they held suddenly said "you have to", which is the case scenario they never planned for.
All over the years since the result has been on, the practical behavior of all Tory PMs in Brussels hasn't been negotiating, it's rather been a "we actually want this off the table and pretend like nothing happened" - well, and the party under May and under Johnson now made it to turn the guilt about fucked-up Brexit onto the parties of the opposition because "they don't let them do Brexit". Because "they keep proposing delays on and on until the very day, parliament is paralyzed because it can't agree on anything because of these useless idiots".
They try to play the card of most peoples' short memory and push the guilt over inaction onto the opposition parties, although it would be their own. Because Cameron (and whoever stood behind him at that time) gambled away.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-09-09 12:27 pm (UTC)
Cameron expected the vote to go the other way- in which case it would have silenced the Brexiteers who have been the bane of Tory governments since the days of John Major. Everything since has been muddle and chaos.

Edited at 2019-09-09 12:27 pm (UTC)
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From: ambezi
2019-09-09 05:04 pm (UTC)
If you want a view that will either provoke rage or laughter, listen/watch Jonathon Pie. Very NSFW, so sound off and listen on headphones. When he gets it right he really gets it right. No half measures here.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-09-09 07:09 pm (UTC)
Ok. Will do.
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[User Picture]From: inamellowmood
2019-09-10 01:08 am (UTC)
Tories there, Dems here. It's like watching an extended slow-motion train wreck, with bodies and debris flying all everywhere.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-09-10 12:39 pm (UTC)
The old order is passing away- and it's not yet clear what the new one will look like.
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[User Picture]From: inamellowmood
2019-09-11 07:01 pm (UTC)
Yup. We'll see in due time.
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[User Picture]From: idahoswede
2019-09-12 07:17 am (UTC)
I always refer to Boris as Trump Lite. The long and short of it is, Boris is about Boris.
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