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Be careful what you wish for

June 14, 2019

For the first half of the noughties, the blood sport that regularly entertained much of the UK (well, my part anyway) was the Tory party leadership.

The decade began with William Hague, who threw in the towel after the 2001 general election bloodbath. He was followed by the grey man who was Iain Duncan Smith. Or was Hague followed by Michael Howard? Smith (or was it Howard?) was followed by “something about the night” Michael Howard. Or was it Smith? The changes were so fast and furious it was difficult to keep track. I could look it up on Wikipedia, but I honestly can’t be bothered.

When the third leader was turfed in 2005 I remember thinking – and saying – that the Tories, with no general election in the offing, should take some time to lick their wounds and just let the country have Boris Johnson as Tory leader for a couple of years, purely for entertainment’s sake.

Yes, I confess: I thought, based largely on his bumbling appearances on Have I Got News For You, that it would be hilarious to have Boris Johnson as leader of the Tories. Even without the buffoonery, how could you take anyone seriously one of whose middle names was de Pfeffel?

Was that before or after it was revealed that Johnson had once been a member of Oxford’s notorious Bullingdon Club – that playground of posh boys who liked to trash restaurants and then throw cash at the owners?


No, it was before, because the only reason this photo was splashed everywhere (before the photographer withdrew all publication rights) was that this particular crop of Bullies included Johnson, David Cameron (who did succeed Howard – or was it Smith?) and George Osborne (who was apparently nicknamed “oik” because he wasn’t considered posh enough).

Fourteen years later it is obvious to me that there is nothing the least bit entertaining about the notion of this bombastic blond bastard heading the Tory party, let alone residing in Number 10 and presiding over Britain’s death by the Brexit debacle he wrought.

Don’t the Tories have a rule that the king slayer isn’t allowed to become King? (See: Hesteltine, Michael.) Not that there’s anyone else in the box of frogs running for the Tory leadership who is likely to turn the taps off on this shit shower.

Oh dear, oh dear. Be careful what you wish for.


From → Columns

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