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Command syndrome: Brexit and Covid have defined Johnson’s leadership style – politicalbetting.com

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  • kle4kle4 Posts: 64,136
    IanB2 said:

    kle4 said:

    I think Patel is a bully who should have been sacked for her behaviour, but can a court really overturn a PMs decision not to sack a minister?

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-56125796

    No, I'm sure the High Court won't, or can't, overturn Johnson's decision not to sack Patel for breaching the ministerial code of conduct.

    But what's interesting (to me) about this is that the FDA (senior CS union) are seeking a judicial review of Johnson's decision not to sack her. The FDA is always extremely cautious about the steps it takes to protect its members, and it's fairly extraordinary that it is pursuing this through JR. It suggest to me that there is a smoking gun here, and that Patel's bullying is not actually in dispute at all. If they didn't have compelling evidence of egregious behaviour, the FDA would quietly drop it.

    On another matter, I've seen little comment on Hancock/DHSC being judged to have broken the law on contracts:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-56125462

    By the way, a really interesting header.
    When I heard the interview on yesterday lunchtime's WatO, it sounded that way to me.

    And there's the wider issue that they rightly see the government's defence - that she didn't mean to bully anyone, as driving a cart and horses through the utility of the code in ever holding any politician to account for their behaviour in the future.
    It was a lame defence and of concern to be sure, I'm just not sure how or even if that should be something the courts should police. If Patel has not learned her lesson and changed her behaviour it will have been very dumb of Boris to stick by her as more problems will emerge, but so long as no crimes are committed if a PM wanted to bear the political and governmental cost of having an arsehole for a minister, are they not allowed to? Where's the line where being an arse means a PM should be given no option but to sack someone?

    The tribunal may help crystallise that, as there's no excuse for acting like a bully to the point alleged about Patel, even when you have to be tough with a frustrating bureaucracy, and people shouldn't be able to act like a childish tyrant with impunity.
  • I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795
    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    kle4 said:

    Roger said:

    AnneJGP said:

    Thanks for the article, David.

    Has anyone noticed any comments from @Cyclefree recently? I've lurked quite a bit but haven't noticed a comment from her for a week or so. A bit concerned for her & her family.

    Good morning, everybody.

    I can't claim to speak for her but the last three weeks has been wall to wall Johnson eulogisers. Brexiteers looking for every piece of evidence that this louche lump of lard is actually what this country has been crying out for. For those of us with horizons beyond Hartlepool -like cyclefree perhaps- it's been like wading through treacle. Bordering on the unreadable.

    Just a thought....maybe she's just out walking.
    You seem to see eulogisers even among people who despise Johnson so I'm not sure that's a great judgement.

    Boris is not someone I and many others want as PM, but relatively speaking hes had a good few weeks. His fans love that and some critics will accept its been far from his worst period. Doesnt change fundamentals.
    The vaccine programme has gone well because both the procurement and management have been kept well away from government, and from the clown and his cronies in particular. For sure, he deserves some credit for having set things up this way - at all accounts because Vallance and other scientists insisted we couldn't risk a repeat of the PPE procurement shambles.

    Otherwise I'd dispute the 'good few weeks', except that nothing obvious has gone wrong. The tunnel to NI is clearly a non starter, and I can only assume that, as in London, he feels he'll get some credit for the idea and for trying and suffer no downside when nothing comes of it. Probably he'll now go on to waste a few tens of £millions getting someone to look into it.

    Things look a little better for the Tories because Labour appears to have decided to try and make a bit more impact, yet is struggling.
    That's why I said 'relatively speaking' he's had a good few weeks. That doesn't necessarily means he deserves some of the individual praise he will get, merely that when nothing is obviously going wrong of course supporters will be more bouyant.
    I'll 'do a Dura' and say it's not as complicated; then say the same thing again. It's simply that the people in charge look better (and surely feel better) when things are getting better, than when they are getting worse.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 64,136
    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
  • IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It is in no way crooked. It just doesn't do what you think it should. If you want to introduce more power for the parties then I would consider that to be crooked. We should be reducing the power of parties not increasing it.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    geoffw said:

    By the way, on Boris Johnson's suitability as PM, it's worth reading his speech of yesterday addressing the Munich security conference and consider whether any other world leaders would do better.
    https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/prime-ministers-speech-at-the-munich-security-conference-19-february-2021

    I listened to his speech and thought it was one of his best on international affairs
    How high a bar is that?
  • Black_RookBlack_Rook Posts: 7,790
    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
  • Scott_xP said:

    No, I'm sure the High Court won't, or can't, overturn Johnson's decision not to sack Patel for breaching the ministerial code of conduct.

    https://twitter.com/Geoelte_Spinne/status/1363049230005338112
    They missed the US of that list, where the slightly more serious crime of trying to stage a coup seems to be cost free (as well as the emoluments clause of the constitution proving to be un-enforceable).

    Getting back to the UK, what did the court tell the government it had to do? I’m surprised and a bit alarmed that they think they can just ignore a court order.
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 26,388
    Dura_Ace said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    Britain is leaver cant for England as that is all they care about.
    The ‘can’t even call yerself English anymore’ mob are weird given it’s mostly folk on their side hiding Englishness under a bushel of Great Britishness. In the long run it will probably be a good thing for them to face up to their own nationalist and cultural inclinations rather than pretending it’s some sort of UJ draped patriotism.
  • JohnLilburneJohnLilburne Posts: 4,052
    IanB2 said:

    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    kle4 said:

    Roger said:

    AnneJGP said:

    Thanks for the article, David.

    Has anyone noticed any comments from @Cyclefree recently? I've lurked quite a bit but haven't noticed a comment from her for a week or so. A bit concerned for her & her family.

    Good morning, everybody.

    I can't claim to speak for her but the last three weeks has been wall to wall Johnson eulogisers. Brexiteers looking for every piece of evidence that this louche lump of lard is actually what this country has been crying out for. For those of us with horizons beyond Hartlepool -like cyclefree perhaps- it's been like wading through treacle. Bordering on the unreadable.

    Just a thought....maybe she's just out walking.
    You seem to see eulogisers even among people who despise Johnson so I'm not sure that's a great judgement.

    Boris is not someone I and many others want as PM, but relatively speaking hes had a good few weeks. His fans love that and some critics will accept its been far from his worst period. Doesnt change fundamentals.
    The vaccine programme has gone well because both the procurement and management have been kept well away from government, and from the clown and his cronies in particular. For sure, he deserves some credit for having set things up this way - at all accounts because Vallance and other scientists insisted we couldn't risk a repeat of the PPE procurement shambles.

    Otherwise I'd dispute the 'good few weeks', except that nothing obvious has gone wrong. The tunnel to NI is clearly a non starter, and I can only assume that, as in London, he feels he'll get some credit for the idea and for trying and suffer no downside when nothing comes of it. Probably he'll now go on to waste a few tens of £millions getting someone to look into it.

    Things look a little better for the Tories because Labour appears to have decided to try and make a bit more impact, yet is struggling.
    That's why I said 'relatively speaking' he's had a good few weeks. That doesn't necessarily means he deserves some of the individual praise he will get, merely that when nothing is obviously going wrong of course supporters will be more bouyant.
    I'll 'do a Dura' and say it's not as complicated; then say the same thing again. It's simply that the people in charge look better (and surely feel better) when things are getting better, than when they are getting worse.
    The vaccination programme is certainly going well. You obviously think this has nothing to do with the Government, but at the very least they could have done it badly instead. And "things getting better" is arguably the result of things having been done right.
  • MetatronMetatron Posts: 188
    Boris Johnson is the type of leader who bankrupts Companies and Countries.
    Insolvency firms are anticipating hundreds of thousands of small business's in the UK collapsing later this year.Markets are anticipating inflation.Which means a high probability of stag inflation coming.Maybe Johnson and Sunak will look to blame each other for the incoming economic crisis.
  • eekeek Posts: 11,641
    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    +1 - our system has got benefits - such as single MPs wholly responsible for representing an area.

    But the system does mean that the person elected is rarely the choice of a majority of the constituents in an area.

    Sadly all options have compromises and history plays a part in why things are done the way they are.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 9,906
    IanB2 said:

    kle4 said:

    Roger said:

    AnneJGP said:

    Thanks for the article, David.

    Has anyone noticed any comments from @Cyclefree recently? I've lurked quite a bit but haven't noticed a comment from her for a week or so. A bit concerned for her & her family.

    Good morning, everybody.

    I can't claim to speak for her but the last three weeks has been wall to wall Johnson eulogisers. Brexiteers looking for every piece of evidence that this louche lump of lard is actually what this country has been crying out for. For those of us with horizons beyond Hartlepool -like cyclefree perhaps- it's been like wading through treacle. Bordering on the unreadable.

    Just a thought....maybe she's just out walking.
    You seem to see eulogisers even among people who despise Johnson so I'm not sure that's a great judgement.

    Boris is not someone I and many others want as PM, but relatively speaking hes had a good few weeks. His fans love that and some critics will accept its been far from his worst period. Doesnt change fundamentals.
    The vaccine programme has gone well because both the procurement and management have been kept well away from government, and from the clown and his cronies in particular. For sure, he deserves some credit for having set things up this way - at all accounts because Vallance and other scientists insisted we couldn't risk a repeat of the PPE procurement shambles.

    Otherwise I'd dispute the 'good few weeks', except that nothing obvious has gone wrong. The tunnel to NI is clearly a non starter, and I can only assume that, as in London, he feels he'll get some credit for the idea and for trying and suffer no downside when nothing comes of it. Probably he'll now go on to waste a few tens of £millions getting someone to look into it.

    Things look a little better for the Tories because Labour appears to have decided to try and make a bit more impact, yet is struggling.
    I accept the notion that governments reap the rewards from good news on their watch, and the vaccine rollout is undoubtedly good news.

    I would also expect the notion of taking the rough with the smooth to apply, however Johnson dodges any blame. In David's header Johnson's errors are attributed to Sage, which may be fair, but where does the buck stop?
  • IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    "Crooked voting system" being the voting system used by billions of people in democracies all around the world?

    The voting system which more people vote with in free democracies than all other voting systems combined?

    The voting system whereby whoever wins most votes in each seat wins?

    Maybe rather than whinging about the voting system you should ask why your side aren't getting the most votes? Just an idea.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795
    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    If you wanted to design a system with huge disincentives to vote for anything other than the two established choices, and then threw away the votes of anyone who still did, you couldn't do much better.
  • I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 39,689

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    You are unfair to Brown and May whose Cabinets were stuffed with likely successors, including Boris. Some of these subsequently resigned, including Boris.
    You are continually the world's biggest apologist for Gordon Brown. But even you can surely accept that he hugely weakened his talent pool by dispatching those who could have been a threat to him?

    May had a Cabinet table that seated Hammond, Rudd, Lidington, Gauke - people so out of tune with the Party that they no longer represent it in Westminster. They were not going to be a threat to May. In the end, the biggest threat that would topple May was May herself.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,918
    Further to my earlier comment Attlee and Churchill were successful post-war at least in part because they had 'big beasts' around them, and they could act as chairman. In Churchill's case, of course he was slowly deteriorating before their eyes.
    Wilson and Thatcher, too, had some significant players around them, and in her case a malevolent glowering Heath on the back benches who could be seen as threatening.
    Blair, as well, was 'in charge' of some pretty big political players; Brown not so much, and IIRC Brown's cabinet changed quite frequently.
    Cameron's cabinet didn't change much, largely due to the fact of the Coalition, but there were also some significant players there. I think though that Coalitions are 'different'.

    Johnson, on the other hand, as pointed out, has ruthlessly removed all the 'significant others' in the Tory Party and now 'bestrides a narrow world'.
    Personally, I think getting rid of potential rivals in the fashion which he did is a sign of weakness; many such leaders have found themselves and their regimes brought down in disaster.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
  • IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    Or you don't.

    Nationalists still want a united Ireland.

    Unionists still want to say No! No! No!

    It's what they do.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 39,689
    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    You just disbarred yourself from being taken seriously.
  • eek said:

    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    +1 - our system has got benefits - such as single MPs wholly responsible for representing an area.

    But the system does mean that the person elected is rarely the choice of a majority of the constituents in an area.

    Sadly all options have compromises and history plays a part in why things are done the way they are.
    Personally I thought the AV system - which as everyone keeps saying is not PR - was a good compromise on this. Maintaining the individual constituency representation but also making the winner more representative of the choice of the electorate
  • IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    The system is sentient now?

    I thought it was voters that gave it to him not a sentient voting system.
  • IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
  • eek said:

    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    +1 - our system has got benefits - such as single MPs wholly responsible for representing an area.

    But the system does mean that the person elected is rarely the choice of a majority of the constituents in an area.

    Sadly all options have compromises and history plays a part in why things are done the way they are.
    Personally I thought the AV system - which as everyone keeps saying is not PR - was a good compromise on this. Maintaining the individual constituency representation but also making the winner more representative of the choice of the electorate
    I voted No as it was a slippery slope to PR, but had nothing against AV itself. AV works downunder.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 12,655
    Metatron said:

    Boris Johnson is the type of leader who bankrupts Companies and Countries.

    Many years ago I worked for EDS, the company founded by Ross Perot.

    They hired as CEO a guy called Dick Brown, who had managed to nearly destroy General Electric in his time there.

    Dick took the share price of EDS to $130, and month later it was $13.

    They gave him a $50m dollar payoff and the remains of the company were eventually absorbed by HP

    That is the kind of legacy I can see BoZo leaving for the UK.
  • eekeek Posts: 11,641
    edited February 20
    Metatron said:

    Boris Johnson is the type of leader who bankrupts Companies and Countries.
    Insolvency firms are anticipating hundreds of thousands of small business's in the UK collapsing later this year.Markets are anticipating inflation.Which means a high probability of stag inflation coming.Maybe Johnson and Sunak will look to blame each other for the incoming economic crisis.

    All Sunak has done is tried to give companies money to keep going until things can open up again.

    Given the amount of money spent however its inevitable we are going to see some inflation from that alone.
  • eek said:

    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    +1 - our system has got benefits - such as single MPs wholly responsible for representing an area.

    But the system does mean that the person elected is rarely the choice of a majority of the constituents in an area.

    Sadly all options have compromises and history plays a part in why things are done the way they are.
    Personally I thought the AV system - which as everyone keeps saying is not PR - was a good compromise on this. Maintaining the individual constituency representation but also making the winner more representative of the choice of the electorate
    I voted No as it was a slippery slope to PR, but had nothing against AV itself. AV works downunder.
    Sadly I think not voting for AV has made the eventual arrival of PR all the more likely.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 9,906
    Metatron said:

    Boris Johnson is the type of leader who bankrupts Companies and Countries.
    Insolvency firms are anticipating hundreds of thousands of small business's in the UK collapsing later this year.Markets are anticipating inflation.Which means a high probability of stag inflation coming.Maybe Johnson and Sunak will look to blame each other for the incoming economic crisis.

    I see that as Sunak's problem.

    If Johnson looks like he might cop any blame for the post Covid economy, he will give us his Benny Hill salute and we will all remember he is just a national treasure.
  • IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    You are unfair to Brown and May whose Cabinets were stuffed with likely successors, including Boris. Some of these subsequently resigned, including Boris.
    You are continually the world's biggest apologist for Gordon Brown. But even you can surely accept that he hugely weakened his talent pool by dispatching those who could have been a threat to him?

    May had a Cabinet table that seated Hammond, Rudd, Lidington, Gauke - people so out of tune with the Party that they no longer represent it in Westminster. They were not going to be a threat to May. In the end, the biggest threat that would topple May was May herself.
    The reason May's Conservative ministers left Parliament is they were victims of Boris's Stalinist purge.

    Gordon Brown's Cabinet included Straw, Darling, both Milibands, James Purnell, Andy Burnham and Harriet Harman; potential leaders all. Who else should Brown have included?
  • IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
  • I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,918
    eek said:

    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    +1 - our system has got benefits - such as single MPs wholly responsible for representing an area.

    But the system does mean that the person elected is rarely the choice of a majority of the constituents in an area.

    Sadly all options have compromises and history plays a part in why things are done the way they are.
    Eg. Ynys Mon in 2019; the winning Conservative had a majority of 2500 over the Third placed candidate.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 12,655
    edited February 20

    Johnson, on the other hand, as pointed out, has ruthlessly removed all the 'significant others' in the Tory Party and now 'bestrides a narrow world'.
    Personally, I think getting rid of potential rivals in the fashion which he did is a sign of weakness; many such leaders have found themselves and their regimes brought down in disaster.

    As noted upthread, the Court of King BoZo VIIIth is now run by the whims of Carrie Boleyn

    It will not end well
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 2,920
    IanB2 said:

    kle4 said:

    At some point the Tories are going to have to work out what they stand for. They are clearly not the party of business anymore, neither do they cherish personal liberty, a small state or the Union. All the things they used to claim as their own no longer apply. It seems that they are moving towards an English form of Orbanism or Modi-ism, but I wonder if that is sustainable. Permanent culture war may not be enough if the economy does not rebound in line with the electoral cycle. It is also a very exhausting way of running a country that remains, at its heart, largely unideological.

    Exhausting is right. We're polarised enough, I dont know how even more exhausting political environments like America manage.
    Southam is incorrect. The Tories just need to point out what Labour are. Keir's latest foray into policy went well didn't it!

    Fear will be the best Tory tactic at the next GE, and rightly so.
    The fact that the Tories generally campaign this way is a subset of the general principle I advanced last weekend, that the right does better when people are already fearful and the left when people are wanting to be hopeful the hard times are receding.

    Thus some Tory fear-based campaigns have done very well, but there have been some spectacular failures - Churchill in 1945 went round suggesting Labour government would lead to the gestapo, and the Tories unsuccessfully tried to dent Blair with the devil eyes posters and suchlike.

    If the next GE has voters looking forward to a better, fairer post-pandemic world, a fear campaign may backfire.
    Better terms than 'left' and 'right' are needed to describe the distinction between Labour and Conservative. In what sense left, in what sense right? They seem to have become antiquarian terms to describe long gone differences.

  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,918

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Blair was in favour, AIUI, but was faced with ruthless and noisy opposition, led by his No 2, Prescott.
  • eek said:

    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    +1 - our system has got benefits - such as single MPs wholly responsible for representing an area.

    But the system does mean that the person elected is rarely the choice of a majority of the constituents in an area.

    Sadly all options have compromises and history plays a part in why things are done the way they are.
    Personally I thought the AV system - which as everyone keeps saying is not PR - was a good compromise on this. Maintaining the individual constituency representation but also making the winner more representative of the choice of the electorate
    I voted No as it was a slippery slope to PR, but had nothing against AV itself. AV works downunder.
    Sadly I think not voting for AV has made the eventual arrival of PR all the more likely.
    I hope you're wrong but you may be right.

    It was a difficult referendum because AV itself isn't bad but the campaigners for it were using arguments in favour of PR. The opponents were arguing against PR.

    Ultimately I viewed the AV referendum a bit like Europe - the original proposition being offered is not bad but the warning signs are there immediately that they are campaigning for Ever Closer Union.

    AV seemed a bit bait and switch for PR.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Clearly I should have added a smiley, for those slow of uptake....
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 40,929
    theProle said:

    kle4 said:

    At some point the Tories are going to have to work out what they stand for. They are clearly not the party of business anymore, neither do they cherish personal liberty, a small state or the Union. All the things they used to claim as their own no longer apply. It seems that they are moving towards an English form of Orbanism or Modi-ism, but I wonder if that is sustainable. Permanent culture war may not be enough if the economy does not rebound in line with the electoral cycle. It is also a very exhausting way of running a country that remains, at its heart, largely unideological.

    Exhausting is right. We're polarised enough, I dont know how even more exhausting political environments like America manage.
    Southam is incorrect. The Tories just need to point out what Labour are. Keir's latest foray into policy went well didn't it!

    Fear will be the best Tory tactic at the next GE, and rightly so.
    It's deeply sad what's happened to Southam.

    I like him. He's one of my favourite posters on here, and a good guy. Unfortunately, he's let Twitter (where he has a couple of thousand echo-chamber followers) go to his head as he serves them up what they want to hear. He'd get far more out of coming back on here and engaging with the few dozen intelligent posters we have. But, that's at times harder work because you have to listen and think, and you don't get all those retweets and likes.

    I also think it's rather strange. Southam is no hard-line Lefty, and I suspect has some deep-rooted concerns with some of the extreme cultural moves of the radical Left. But, I think he's deeply frustrated by losing for over 11 years now and is searching for a coherent and unifying attack line that he can use on the Tories to coalesce Labour as one and help them regain power, so he's burying it for now.

    I just think he's being overly influenced by Twitter, and has picked the wrong one.
    I think Southern has a point here. Thanks to Starmer being a portable boring machine, and the rest of his party a disorganised rabble of non-entities, the Tories have got a free pass for the moment. But that doesn't mean that they are out of the woods, because they appear not to have any principles any more.
    They use to stand for sound money, personal freedom and a small state. They understood business, particularly small businesses. They knew small businesses are destroyed by regulations, big businesses love them as it destroys their smaller nimble competition.
    Currently they appear to have abandoned all that. They are simply trading as the "less bad party" with a side helping of (badly played out) culture war.

    It's maddening as a voter. I don't want to vote for Johnson and his clowns, but the only viable alternative is Starmer, who stands for all the same things as Johnson just done a bit worse, plus the really insane side of the culture war.

    I explored the consistency of Tory principles upthread. Sure, those aren't the same as an entirely consistent *policy* position, but the core of them remain intact.

    Sound money will do - it's just a question of when, and I don't think this year is the time to do it - and I certainly trust them more with personal freedom than I do Labour.

    I'm not sure how popular a small state really is, to be honest. What people want is well-funded public services, and fair delivery of those services, and a reasonable position to taxation. Classic British middle-of-the-road stuff.

    What the last Labour administration got wrong was to maximise tax-take, particularly with council tax and fiscal drag at the basic and higher bands, and then overspend (particularly on benefits) without taking debt seriously. The Tories spotted the electorate didn't like that, particularly those who worked on (heavily taxed) lower incomes whilst their neighbours were on benefits, but misjudged that they'd want rock-bottom taxes and tight spending settlements on health, education and police for years afterwards. They don't.

    I think a small-state argument works, and I do prefer it, but it only when the economy of the country is growing by 3-5% a year and enough of the citizens are sufficiently prosperous such that they can afford independent and choose private services in health, education and insurance, such that they find the state intrusive, stultifying and constraining. If they don't have that, they prefer good public services to rely on.

    So the best path to a "small state" is to grow a very rich prosperous economy *first*, and then turn to the size and shape of it after - not before.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,918
    Scott_xP said:

    Johnson, on the other hand, as pointed out, has ruthlessly removed all the 'significant others' in the Tory Party and now 'bestrides a narrow world'.
    Personally, I think getting rid of potential rivals in the fashion which he did is a sign of weakness; many such leaders have found themselves and their regimes brought down in disaster.

    As noted upthread, the Court of King BoZo VIIIth is now run by the whims of Carrie Boleyn

    It will not end well
    You've been reading Private Eye!
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 6,628
    edited February 20

    I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
  • IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Clearly I should have added a smiley, for those slow of uptake....
    That definitely includes me on a Saturday morning
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 9,906
    Scott_xP said:

    Metatron said:

    Boris Johnson is the type of leader who bankrupts Companies and Countries.

    Many years ago I worked for EDS, the company founded by Ross Perot.

    They hired as CEO a guy called Dick Brown, who had managed to nearly destroy General Electric in his time there.

    Dick took the share price of EDS to $130, and month later it was $13.

    They gave him a $50m dollar payoff and the remains of the company were eventually absorbed by HP

    That is the kind of legacy I can see BoZo leaving for the UK.
    So how do we put a positive gloss on that and the break up of the Union?

    In all fairness to this Government the post Covid economic challenge is not of their own making, and would likely as not, defy even the most competent of administrations.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    eek said:

    kle4 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    Our system is not the best, but it is not crooked. We supporters of PR (or whatever other system you would support) don't help our case going that far.
    +1 - our system has got benefits - such as single MPs wholly responsible for representing an area.

    But the system does mean that the person elected is rarely the choice of a majority of the constituents in an area.

    Sadly all options have compromises and history plays a part in why things are done the way they are.
    Personally I thought the AV system - which as everyone keeps saying is not PR - was a good compromise on this. Maintaining the individual constituency representation but also making the winner more representative of the choice of the electorate
    I voted No as it was a slippery slope to PR, but had nothing against AV itself. AV works downunder.
    Sadly I think not voting for AV has made the eventual arrival of PR all the more likely.
    One can only hope that depriving the Tories of a majority will be all that it needs, and it's the obvious platform around which whichever opposition parties can assemble an alternative majority can coalesce for as long as it takes to push the needed reforms through.

    Starmer's choice is whether to establish this as a key part of his programme in advance, or keep it in his locker until and if he manages to achieve a balanced parliament.

    The grit in the vaseline, as last time, is that Labour has never been vaccinated against hubris.

    Think how recent history might have played out differently had Blair carried through on the promised Jenkins reforms.
  • Black_RookBlack_Rook Posts: 7,790

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Blair (and other major party leaders) face two issues in replacing FPTP. Firstly, they want majoritarian power, and don't want to give it up once it is secured. Secondly, implementing PR entails inviting a very large number of their Parliamentary colleagues to vote to join the dole queue.

    Blair won 418 seats in 1997. On a strictly proportional share, it would've been 285. Would either he or his colleagues have voted to implement a system that resulted in 133 of them being packed off to the Job Centre?

    Turkeys. Christmas.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 40,929
    Anyway, off to play with my daughter.

    Have a good day all.
  • Black_RookBlack_Rook Posts: 7,790

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    Boris
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    How is our voting system crooked?

    We don't have voter ID. We have free access to postal ballots. We count on the same night all ballots. There are loads of independent watchers and verifiers from all parties. We have an impartial electoral services commission. We don't have partisan gerrymandering. Everyone starts from zero every 4-5 years in each election. You can freely campaign for any candidate. Ultra-safe seats can and do change, Leigh, Sellafield, Finchley etc. The only thing I'm uncomfortable about is political party donations and the influence of donors, which needs reform, but even there it's nothing like as bad as in the USA.

    Voting systems? Sure, prefer PR etc. But I don't think you can call FPTP "crooked". I don't think PR would save the Liberal Democrats either, only you and your party can do that.
    Point of order: voter ID is coming...
  • Philip_ThompsonPhilip_Thompson Posts: 52,350
    edited February 20

    theProle said:

    kle4 said:

    At some point the Tories are going to have to work out what they stand for. They are clearly not the party of business anymore, neither do they cherish personal liberty, a small state or the Union. All the things they used to claim as their own no longer apply. It seems that they are moving towards an English form of Orbanism or Modi-ism, but I wonder if that is sustainable. Permanent culture war may not be enough if the economy does not rebound in line with the electoral cycle. It is also a very exhausting way of running a country that remains, at its heart, largely unideological.

    Exhausting is right. We're polarised enough, I dont know how even more exhausting political environments like America manage.
    Southam is incorrect. The Tories just need to point out what Labour are. Keir's latest foray into policy went well didn't it!

    Fear will be the best Tory tactic at the next GE, and rightly so.
    It's deeply sad what's happened to Southam.

    I like him. He's one of my favourite posters on here, and a good guy. Unfortunately, he's let Twitter (where he has a couple of thousand echo-chamber followers) go to his head as he serves them up what they want to hear. He'd get far more out of coming back on here and engaging with the few dozen intelligent posters we have. But, that's at times harder work because you have to listen and think, and you don't get all those retweets and likes.

    I also think it's rather strange. Southam is no hard-line Lefty, and I suspect has some deep-rooted concerns with some of the extreme cultural moves of the radical Left. But, I think he's deeply frustrated by losing for over 11 years now and is searching for a coherent and unifying attack line that he can use on the Tories to coalesce Labour as one and help them regain power, so he's burying it for now.

    I just think he's being overly influenced by Twitter, and has picked the wrong one.
    I think Southern has a point here. Thanks to Starmer being a portable boring machine, and the rest of his party a disorganised rabble of non-entities, the Tories have got a free pass for the moment. But that doesn't mean that they are out of the woods, because they appear not to have any principles any more.
    They use to stand for sound money, personal freedom and a small state. They understood business, particularly small businesses. They knew small businesses are destroyed by regulations, big businesses love them as it destroys their smaller nimble competition.
    Currently they appear to have abandoned all that. They are simply trading as the "less bad party" with a side helping of (badly played out) culture war.

    It's maddening as a voter. I don't want to vote for Johnson and his clowns, but the only viable alternative is Starmer, who stands for all the same things as Johnson just done a bit worse, plus the really insane side of the culture war.

    I explored the consistency of Tory principles upthread. Sure, those aren't the same as an entirely consistent *policy* position, but the core of them remain intact.

    Sound money will do - it's just a question of when, and I don't think this year is the time to do it - and I certainly trust them more with personal freedom than I do Labour.

    I'm not sure how popular a small state really is, to be honest. What people want is well-funded public services, and fair delivery of those services, and a reasonable position to taxation. Classic British middle-of-the-road stuff.

    What the last Labour administration got wrong was to maximise tax-take, particularly with council tax and fiscal drag at the basic and higher bands, and then overspend (particularly on benefits) without taking debt seriously. The Tories spotted the electorate didn't like that, particularly those who worked on (heavily taxed) lower incomes whilst their neighbours were on benefits, but misjudged that they'd want rock-bottom taxes and tight spending settlements on health, education and police for years afterwards. They don't.

    I think a small-state argument works, and I do prefer it, but it only when the economy of the country is growing by 3-5% a year and enough of the citizens are sufficiently prosperous such that they can afford independent and choose private services in health, education and insurance, such that they find the state intrusive, stultifying and constraining. If they don't have that, they prefer good public services to rely on.

    So the best path to a "small state" is to grow a very rich prosperous economy *first*, and then turn to the size and shape of it after - not before.
    David Cameron's original concept of "sharing the proceeds of growth".

    I think it will be viable over the next decade as I think we will see some stonking high growth in the next few years. A roaring twenties.

    PS for any on the loony left who still believe the ludicrous notion that austerity or the Brexit result choked off economic growth it's worth remembering in the real world that Britain grew faster than Europe in the past decade.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 9,906
    ...or MoE, or if you were @BluestBlue a whopping 3 point advantage.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 40,929

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    Boris
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    How is our voting system crooked?

    We don't have voter ID. We have free access to postal ballots. We count on the same night all ballots. There are loads of independent watchers and verifiers from all parties. We have an impartial electoral services commission. We don't have partisan gerrymandering. Everyone starts from zero every 4-5 years in each election. You can freely campaign for any candidate. Ultra-safe seats can and do change, Leigh, Sellafield, Finchley etc. The only thing I'm uncomfortable about is political party donations and the influence of donors, which needs reform, but even there it's nothing like as bad as in the USA.

    Voting systems? Sure, prefer PR etc. But I don't think you can call FPTP "crooked". I don't think PR would save the Liberal Democrats either, only you and your party can do that.
    Point of order: voter ID is coming...
    Well, we'll see. It's not law yet.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 39,689

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    You are unfair to Brown and May whose Cabinets were stuffed with likely successors, including Boris. Some of these subsequently resigned, including Boris.
    You are continually the world's biggest apologist for Gordon Brown. But even you can surely accept that he hugely weakened his talent pool by dispatching those who could have been a threat to him?

    May had a Cabinet table that seated Hammond, Rudd, Lidington, Gauke - people so out of tune with the Party that they no longer represent it in Westminster. They were not going to be a threat to May. In the end, the biggest threat that would topple May was May herself.
    The reason May's Conservative ministers left Parliament is they were victims of Boris's Stalinist purge.

    Gordon Brown's Cabinet included Straw, Darling, both Milibands, James Purnell, Andy Burnham and Harriet Harman; potential leaders all. Who else should Brown have included?
    "Gordon Brown's Cabinet included Straw, Darling, both Milibands, James Purnell, Andy Burnham and Harriet Harman; potential leaders all."

    *titter*

    Darling might have made the grade, but was broken by Brown, such that he was delighted to head for the exit at the earliest opportunity.

    The rest? Purnell? Who even the BBC has let go. The BBC.

    Harriet Harman - really? Labour's first female PM? Really?

    Ed Miliband had a crack at it and was found wanting. His brother's career was bested by a banana.

    Straw was potentially duplicitous enough to have made the grade. But he would have made even Boris look principled. You wouldn't have liked it if he made the top job.

    Burnham is the sleeper in that list. I could see him replacing Starmer. With probably more success.

  • Fysics_TeacherFysics_Teacher Posts: 4,521
    edited February 20
    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Clearly I should have added a smiley, for those slow of uptake....
    In my experience (mostly in classrooms) any attempt at sarcasm will be taken at face value by a significant portion of the audience: 90% in the case of Y9 (the other 10% not having heard it) down to about 50% with Y13.

    I’d put the average PB crowd somewhere between those extremes...
  • I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    He didn't purge his opponents he purged the deadwood. The bedblocker MPs so out of touch they were incapable of taking the country forwards.

    Plus of course they expelled themselves, he told them it was a confidence vote and any MP who voted No would be expelled, not like Stalin but exactly the same as John Major did with Maastricht. Any MP that wanted to keep the whip could have voted with it, they chose not to despite losing the referendum, losing the leadership election and everything else.
  • MattWMattW Posts: 6,835

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    Boris
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    How is our voting system crooked?

    We don't have voter ID. We have free access to postal ballots. We count on the same night all ballots. There are loads of independent watchers and verifiers from all parties. We have an impartial electoral services commission. We don't have partisan gerrymandering. Everyone starts from zero every 4-5 years in each election. You can freely campaign for any candidate. Ultra-safe seats can and do change, Leigh, Sellafield, Finchley etc. The only thing I'm uncomfortable about is political party donations and the influence of donors, which needs reform, but even there it's nothing like as bad as in the USA.

    Voting systems? Sure, prefer PR etc. But I don't think you can call FPTP "crooked". I don't think PR would save the Liberal Democrats either, only you and your party can do that.
    Point of order: voter ID is coming...
    Sinn Fein seem to be quite exercised (or is it exorcised) by that one.
  • JohnLilburneJohnLilburne Posts: 4,052

    I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    Well, maybe not quite like Stalin.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 39,689

    I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    He didn't purge his opponents he purged the deadwood. The bedblocker MPs so out of touch they were incapable of taking the country forwards.

    Plus of course they expelled themselves, he told them it was a confidence vote and any MP who voted No would be expelled, not like Stalin but exactly the same as John Major did with Maastricht. Any MP that wanted to keep the whip could have voted with it, they chose not to despite losing the referendum, losing the leadership election and everything else.
    It's almost as if they were...losers.

    Not a great look for a politician.
  • Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 6,488



    I see that as Sunak's problem.

    .

    The Goldman Sachs Elf's leadership window is definitely closing if it hasn't already closed. Johnson is obviously going hang the blame for any Brexit or Covid disruption around Sunak's pencil neck.
  • There is seemingly a small Tory lead, which bearing in mind the success of the vaccine programme - which has been excellent BTW, by far the best thing the Tories have done, I just recently had my first jab and it was superbly organised and very efficiently run - I did expect to be larger.

    If anything negative comes out that lead will evaporate, I wonder if this Parliament will just have small leads and ties throughout?

    In a lot of ways that is very bad for Labour as they need the Lib Dems to take some Tory seats and reduce that effective swing. I can still see that happening in seats like Guildford, Winchester but I'm not sure it's enough just yet.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 12,655
    BoZo promoted the deadwood.

    Robert Jenrick

    Priti Patel

    Gavin fucking Willamson
  • I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    He didn't purge his opponents he purged the deadwood. The bedblocker MPs so out of touch they were incapable of taking the country forwards.

    Plus of course they expelled themselves, he told them it was a confidence vote and any MP who voted No would be expelled, not like Stalin but exactly the same as John Major did with Maastricht. Any MP that wanted to keep the whip could have voted with it, they chose not to despite losing the referendum, losing the leadership election and everything else.
    If it had been a confidence vote, surely Boris would have resigned or called an election? He did neither, so it was not a confidence vote in that sense.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 37,358
    edited February 20

    I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    I could be completely wrong but I think the last incumbent PM not to do an actual media interview during the campaign was Macdonald in 1931, as he preferred just to radio/cine broadcast clips of campaign speeches. The one attempt I can think of where he departed from that model was where he walked along the line of his cabinet introducing them. It was absolutely excruciatingly embarrassingly bad - a genuine ‘wince as you watch’ moment - although at least he had the excuse that the whole idea was new and he was experimenting.

    Edit - I love Youtube. Here it is for those who want to judge for themselves:
    https://youtu.be/kuP_mUMbMTs

    And here is his effort in 1931 - you’ll notice most of the time he’s not even looking at the camera.

    https://youtu.be/8vlFREOWvl4
  • BluestBlueBluestBlue Posts: 4,155
    edited February 20

    ...or MoE, or if you were @BluestBlue a whopping 3 point advantage.
    Lol. Ed Miliband - Ed Miliband! - had a 6-point average lead over Cameron's Tories at this point in the 2010-2015 Parliament. The failure of the Opposition to hold a lead in mid-term, let alone when people's lives are so grim and difficult at the moment, is a terrible omen for their prospects at a GE.

    But don't worry, I'm sure Captain 'Close the Zoos!' will turn it around for them in no time...
  • I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    Well, maybe not quite like Stalin.
    Boris was not hiding in that fridge. He was looking for ice-picks. :wink:
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,918
    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
    Some of it's vote has transferred, or says it's going to transfer to Traditional Unionist Voice, isn't it? Under FPTP that'll simply split the hard-line Unionist vote and let in.... who?

    Answering my own question Alliance in a couple of seats, but maybe Nationalists in others. As someone suggested a few days ago, that could leave Sinn Fein with the job of First Minister.
  • RochdalePioneersRochdalePioneers Posts: 9,419
    edited February 20

    David Cameron's original concept of "sharing the proceeds of growth".

    I think it will be viable over the next decade as I think we will see some stonking high growth in the next few years. A roaring twenties.

    PS for any on the loony left who still believe the ludicrous notion that austerity or the Brexit result choked off economic growth it's worth remembering in the real world that Britain grew faster than Europe in the past decade.

    What does make me laugh is how selective people's memories were. Brown definitely was a Bad Man and Cameron would have done it all differently apparently. Yet, as you say, the alternative Tory economic plan was to "match Labour spending plans pound for pound" - because people feared Tory cuts - and inflate the bubble even faster so that he could "share the proceeds of [even more] growth" in the form of tax cuts which would drive spending and inflate the bubble even faster.

    Yet after the event people seemed to be under the impression that Cameron and Osbrown were sagely warning against (their own policies) and planning to regulate the banks by deregulating them even further than Darling had. Not that Darling had deregulated *that* far - Barclays were prevented from buying Leeman remember...
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795
    edited February 20

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Blair (and other major party leaders) face two issues in replacing FPTP. Firstly, they want majoritarian power, and don't want to give it up once it is secured. Secondly, implementing PR entails inviting a very large number of their Parliamentary colleagues to vote to join the dole queue.

    Blair won 418 seats in 1997. On a strictly proportional share, it would've been 285. Would either he or his colleagues have voted to implement a system that resulted in 133 of them being packed off to the Job Centre?

    Turkeys. Christmas.
    Just the sort of arguments with which Tories lure the naive on the left towards a life in near permanent opposition.

    Blair not carrying through with his promised reforms is up there in the contest for biggest mistake made by a party in government, along with Iraq and the Brexit Referendum. Indeed it is likely the bigger mistake, as more likely to have led to an alternative history.
  • Richard_NabaviRichard_Nabavi Posts: 28,344
    Superb article, as so often from David.
  • IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
    The DUP are facing the same fate as the UUP. They made compromises with Sinn Fein so now a harder more unionist party is seeking to take their votes.

    The DUP made their name as the No No No party but then had to make compromises. Now there's a new No No No party. It's what they do.

    Nothing to do with Brexit. Correlation does not equal causation.
  • MaxPBMaxPB Posts: 27,075
    The main problem with Boris is that he dithers and values loyalty above competence. The Cabinet is full of idiots who have sworn fealty to him rather than people who could make the country work properly but would put the nation ahead of Boris' personal ambitions.

    Being clubbable or not doesn't really come into it.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 37,358

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Clearly I should have added a smiley, for those slow of uptake....
    In my experience (mostly in classrooms) any attempt at sarcasm will be taken at face value by a significant portion of the audience: 90% in the case of Y9 (the other 10% not having heard it) down to about 50% with Y13.

    I’d put the average PB crowd somewhere between those extremes...
    We’re actually forbidden from using sarcasm at my school, for that reason, although I wouldn’t go bail for one or two of my colleagues always following it!
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
    The DUP are facing the same fate as the UUP. They made compromises with Sinn Fein so now a harder more unionist party is seeking to take their votes.

    The DUP made their name as the No No No party but then had to make compromises. Now there's a new No No No party. It's what they do.

    Nothing to do with Brexit. Correlation does not equal causation.
    That's just denial. Go do a bit of reading up on what politicians, academics and commentators actually living there are saying.
  • Black_RookBlack_Rook Posts: 7,790
    MattW said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    Boris
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    How is our voting system crooked?

    We don't have voter ID. We have free access to postal ballots. We count on the same night all ballots. There are loads of independent watchers and verifiers from all parties. We have an impartial electoral services commission. We don't have partisan gerrymandering. Everyone starts from zero every 4-5 years in each election. You can freely campaign for any candidate. Ultra-safe seats can and do change, Leigh, Sellafield, Finchley etc. The only thing I'm uncomfortable about is political party donations and the influence of donors, which needs reform, but even there it's nothing like as bad as in the USA.

    Voting systems? Sure, prefer PR etc. But I don't think you can call FPTP "crooked". I don't think PR would save the Liberal Democrats either, only you and your party can do that.
    Point of order: voter ID is coming...
    Sinn Fein seem to be quite exercised (or is it exorcised) by that one.
    Labour will make a noise about it too.

    In both cases, it is probably because they assume that voter ID will be a net suppressor of voting amongst poor people, and it's likely that they are correct.

    Insofar as I'm aware, electoral fraud is minimal in the UK (and to the extent that there's any problem at all, it's with postal rather than in-person voting.) So if the inconvenience of imposing voter ID (people have to remember to bring it with them, and the staff at the polling stations have to check all this documentation) has no role to play in preventing impersonation, then we have to look for an alternative reason for doing it. Voter suppression is the only explanation that occurs.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 37,358
    MaxPB said:

    The main problem with Boris is that he dithers and values loyalty above competence. The Cabinet is full of idiots who have sworn fealty to him rather than people who could make the country work properly but would put the nation ahead of Boris' personal ambitions.

    Being clubbable or not doesn't really come into it.

    How does that apply to Gavin Williamson, who isn’t noticeably loyal either?
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 39,689
    theProle said:


    Thanks to Starmer being a portable boring machine....

    Arf!



  • I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    He didn't purge his opponents he purged the deadwood. The bedblocker MPs so out of touch they were incapable of taking the country forwards.

    Plus of course they expelled themselves, he told them it was a confidence vote and any MP who voted No would be expelled, not like Stalin but exactly the same as John Major did with Maastricht. Any MP that wanted to keep the whip could have voted with it, they chose not to despite losing the referendum, losing the leadership election and everything else.
    If it had been a confidence vote, surely Boris would have resigned or called an election? He did neither, so it was not a confidence vote in that sense.
    Yes he did. He immediately after the vote called an election but Labour voted against it remember?

    So he repeated calling an election until it was eventually voted for. Blame Labour and others for not having the election sooner.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795

    I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    Well, maybe not quite like Stalin.
    Boris was not hiding in that fridge. He was looking for ice-picks. :wink:
    What was he looking for when he was hiding upstairs from IDS pretending to be not at home?
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 55,279
    Mr. Rook, the trial of voter ID had dozens of acceptable forms, and if somebody had none of them they could apply to their local council for one specifically for voting.

    Is the Post Office suppressing mail delivery by asking people to confirm their ID?
  • Black_RookBlack_Rook Posts: 7,790
    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    "comparative inadequates"? Prime Ministers are generally surrounded by comparative inadequates - in that, most will not reach the top of the greasy poll themselves. Some make room for their heir presumptive - someone who will neither outshine nor set about demolishing their legacy. For some PMs, they have an obvious successor - Blair had Brown (although, arguably, he should have canned him for Labour to prosper). Some seem to prevent the appointment of any who might be a successor - Brown and May. Some are in charge of such a lost cause, you have no idea who might be your successor when your party next gains power (Major). Some have no fear about their legacy being dismantled, it doesn't really matter who follows on (Thatcher).

    Boris has around him those who could be natural successors. Sunak, obviously. Truss, if she carries on cheerfully delivering. Maybe Dowden, if Boris goes long. Having secured the top job, Boris doesn't exude the air that nobody could possibly do the job as well as them. You won't have to prise each finger off the door jamb of Number 10. When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over.
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    It could be argued thus. OTOH, Tony Blair won a majority of 177 with a smaller share of the popular vote. So, swings, roundabouts and all that.
    That just shows how crooked it is!

    He had promised to scrap it. So the system gave him such a huge majority in order to force him to save it.
    That just shows Blair was crooked not the system. Are old ladies crooked because con artists steal their life savings? You are blaming the system rather than the crook.
    Blair (and other major party leaders) face two issues in replacing FPTP. Firstly, they want majoritarian power, and don't want to give it up once it is secured. Secondly, implementing PR entails inviting a very large number of their Parliamentary colleagues to vote to join the dole queue.

    Blair won 418 seats in 1997. On a strictly proportional share, it would've been 285. Would either he or his colleagues have voted to implement a system that resulted in 133 of them being packed off to the Job Centre?

    Turkeys. Christmas.
    Just the sort of arguments with which Tories lure the naive on the left towards a life in near permanent opposition.

    Blair not carrying through with his promised reforms is up there in the contest for biggest mistake made by a party in government, along with Iraq and the Brexit Referendum. Indeed it is likely the bigger mistake, as more likely to have led to an alternative history.
    That and devolution (not necessarily the concept, but certainly the grossly incompetent execution.)

    We might get PR if Labour gets back in as a minority but doubts its ability to fare any better against the Tory electoral coalition. Until then, no.
  • IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
    The DUP are facing the same fate as the UUP. They made compromises with Sinn Fein so now a harder more unionist party is seeking to take their votes.

    The DUP made their name as the No No No party but then had to make compromises. Now there's a new No No No party. It's what they do.

    Nothing to do with Brexit. Correlation does not equal causation.
    The problem with absolutism is that eventually you have to compromise. Life is not black and white, its all shades - so when No No NO becomes maybe yes, thats your entire purpose gone.

    That the DUP have disappeared into a cloud of their own harrumphing isn't a surprise. What would be is if the even harder unionist party actually does well - are there enough uncompromising bastards in norniron left to sustain such idiocy?
  • YorkcityYorkcity Posts: 4,382
    What noise ?
    The last two have Labour within 3 .
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 37,358

    Mr. Rook, the trial of voter ID had dozens of acceptable forms, and if somebody had none of them they could apply to their local council for one specifically for voting.

    Is the Post Office suppressing mail delivery by asking people to confirm their ID?

    Surely a poll card with a barcode would be enough. If it doesn’t arrive 2 weeks before polling day, contact the council and they can cancel the old one and issue a new one.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 39,689

    MattW said:

    IanB2 said:

    Barnesian said:

    IanB2 said:


    Not having his own clan, and therefore only being able to gather about him comparative inadequates, will be his undoing, which is probably what David was trying to get at.

    Boris
    "When he does go, he can be relaxed there will be somebody competent to take over"

    Do you really think he would care!! Really? All he'll care about his place in the history books. It would suit him if his successor is a dumbo.
    Of course he cares. Whatever you might think of the man, the Conservative Party is a huge part of his life. He wants what is best for it. Because deep down, his ultimate belief is that the interests of the country he loves, the United Kingdom, and the interests of the people of that country, are best served by the Conservative Party over the capabilities of other offers.

    That he could get a majority of 80 from that electorate is a mystery to so many. Well, have you perhaps considered that maybe political prognostication really isn't for you, huh? Anybody that laid Boris as leader and PM really hasn't got the insights into modern politics required to be putting down hard cash.
    Having a crooked voting system helped hugely.
    How is our voting system crooked?

    We don't have voter ID. We have free access to postal ballots. We count on the same night all ballots. There are loads of independent watchers and verifiers from all parties. We have an impartial electoral services commission. We don't have partisan gerrymandering. Everyone starts from zero every 4-5 years in each election. You can freely campaign for any candidate. Ultra-safe seats can and do change, Leigh, Sellafield, Finchley etc. The only thing I'm uncomfortable about is political party donations and the influence of donors, which needs reform, but even there it's nothing like as bad as in the USA.

    Voting systems? Sure, prefer PR etc. But I don't think you can call FPTP "crooked". I don't think PR would save the Liberal Democrats either, only you and your party can do that.
    Point of order: voter ID is coming...
    Sinn Fein seem to be quite exercised (or is it exorcised) by that one.
    Labour will make a noise about it too.

    In both cases, it is probably because they assume that voter ID will be a net suppressor of voting amongst poor people, and it's likely that they are correct.

    Insofar as I'm aware, electoral fraud is minimal in the UK (and to the extent that there's any problem at all, it's with postal rather than in-person voting.) So if the inconvenience of imposing voter ID (people have to remember to bring it with them, and the staff at the polling stations have to check all this documentation) has no role to play in preventing impersonation, then we have to look for an alternative reason for doing it. Voter suppression is the only explanation that occurs.
    Anybody that believes in democracy should surely want to get the level of electoral fraud down to as close to zero as possible?

    Somebody casting a fraudulent vote has the ability to negate my vote. It's MY vote they are robbing.
  • IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
    The DUP are facing the same fate as the UUP. They made compromises with Sinn Fein so now a harder more unionist party is seeking to take their votes.

    The DUP made their name as the No No No party but then had to make compromises. Now there's a new No No No party. It's what they do.

    Nothing to do with Brexit. Correlation does not equal causation.
    That's just denial. Go do a bit of reading up on what politicians, academics and commentators actually living there are saying.
    Politicians, academics and commentators don't make a living from saying "fundamentally nothing has changed". They make a living from overanalysing the narcissism of small differences.
  • BluestBlueBluestBlue Posts: 4,155
    edited February 20

    I've been a Johnson-sceptic for many years on the simple grounds that anyone who appears on the telly must be a trivial, meretricious figure unworthy of serious consideration. From this lofty perspective I would just as soon have Ian Hislop or Paul Merton as PM. In other words, not at all.

    But since Covid I have begun to detect just the tiniest glint of steel. His necessary daily involvement in the crisis has, I think, been the making of a new, better Boris. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    The glint of steel has always been there. It is Boris who ruthlessly purged his party opponents (not Corbyn or Brown: Boris!); Boris who defied the law; Boris who ignored democratic conventions like being interviewed by Andrew Neil. But it is personal: it is about Boris, not Borisism.
    Boris ruthlessly purged the deadwood.

    Pruning away the dead wood allows healthy new growth.

    Boris didn't ignore conventions like ignoring Neil. All successful PMs have played that game - Blair, Cameron etc managed which interviews or debates they attended (or no debates at all).
    ETA Boris did not purge the dead wood. Boris purged his opponents. Like Stalin.

    Which other party leader in modern history was not interviewed by the BBC during an election campaign? Gladstone? Mrs Thatcher might have preferred Jimmy Young to Robin Day but she did not hide in a fridge to avoid questions.
    'Wasn't interviewed by the BBC'
    'Gladstone' [?!]
    'Hid in a fridge'

    I love the way the voters illustrated the absolute irrelevance of these tedious talking-points. Within 24 hours of Boris 'hiding in a fridge', they gave him the largest majority for any party since Blair in 2001, the largest Tory majority since Thatcher in 1987, and the highest share of the popular vote since Thatcher in 1979.

    But do tell us more about the fridge and Andrew Neil. Because people really seem to care about those things.
  • Black_RookBlack_Rook Posts: 7,790

    Mr. Rook, the trial of voter ID had dozens of acceptable forms, and if somebody had none of them they could apply to their local council for one specifically for voting.

    Is the Post Office suppressing mail delivery by asking people to confirm their ID?

    No, but that's not the point. Government must be introducing voter ID for a reason. If there's no fraud problem to be addressed, then what alternative explanation is there for going to all the trouble?
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 83,559
    edited February 20
    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
    The DUP are facing the same fate as the UUP. They made compromises with Sinn Fein so now a harder more unionist party is seeking to take their votes.

    The DUP made their name as the No No No party but then had to make compromises. Now there's a new No No No party. It's what they do.

    Nothing to do with Brexit. Correlation does not equal causation.
    That's just denial. Go do a bit of reading up on what politicians, academics and commentators actually living there are saying.
    Philip is right on this, in the 2015 general election in NI before Brexit the DUP got 25%, SF got 24%, the SDLP got 13% and the UUP got 16% and the Alliance got 8%.

    At the 2019 general election after the Brexit vote the DUP got 30%, SF got 22%, the SDLP got 14%, the Alliance got 16% and the UUP got 11%.

    So the DUP is actually up on where it was before the Brexit vote as are the SDLP, SF is down as is the UUP and the main gainers are the non sectarian Alliance. Any changes since then have been Unionist hardliners moving from DUP to the even harder line TUV over opposition to the NI protocol.

    In Scotland in 2015 before Brexit the SNP got 50%, Labour got 24%, the Tories got 14% and the LDs got 7%. In 2019 after the Brexit vote the SNP got 45%, the Tories got 25%, Labour got 18% and the LDs got 9%.

    So the SNP is actually down in Scotland since the Brexit vote as are Labour and the Tories and LDs have been the main gainers.
  • ydoethur said:

    MaxPB said:

    The main problem with Boris is that he dithers and values loyalty above competence. The Cabinet is full of idiots who have sworn fealty to him rather than people who could make the country work properly but would put the nation ahead of Boris' personal ambitions.

    Being clubbable or not doesn't really come into it.

    How does that apply to Gavin Williamson, who isn’t noticeably loyal either?
    He is Piers Fletcher-Dervish, or Ben Swain. Or Richard Burgon. So utterly dense that light collapses into him. A marvellous distraction from the boss when people want to know why the government is so shit.

    "Tell Gavin to start suing councils refusing to force schools to stay open". "Hang on, aren't we about to shut them?" "Exactly, instead of asking why we were so slow in doing so they will be agog at Gavin threating to sue them for doing something he's now instructing them to do"
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 9,906
    Dura_Ace said:



    I see that as Sunak's problem.

    .

    The Goldman Sachs Elf's leadership window is definitely closing if it hasn't already closed. Johnson is obviously going hang the blame for any Brexit or Covid disruption around Sunak's pencil neck.
    Delivered with your usual panache! Respect!
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 55,279
    Mr. Rook, voter fraud isn't at horrendous levels, but making voting more secure isn't a bad thing.
  • Philip_ThompsonPhilip_Thompson Posts: 52,350
    edited February 20

    Mr. Rook, the trial of voter ID had dozens of acceptable forms, and if somebody had none of them they could apply to their local council for one specifically for voting.

    Is the Post Office suppressing mail delivery by asking people to confirm their ID?

    No, but that's not the point. Government must be introducing voter ID for a reason. If there's no fraud problem to be addressed, then what alternative explanation is there for going to all the trouble?
    Because there is a problem to be addressed. There have been prosecutions and court cases in recent years. Look at all the fraud that happened in Tower Hamlets.

    Prevention is better than cure at ensuring that the process is secure.

    Plus everyone has ID nowadays. The idea of will put off anyone is farcical. Young people can't even enter a nightclub or buy a pint nowadays without ID.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 40,050

    ...or MoE, or if you were @BluestBlue a whopping 3 point advantage.
    Lol. Ed Miliband - Ed Miliband! - had a 6-point average lead over Cameron's Tories at this point in the 2010-2015 Parliament. The failure of the Opposition to hold a lead in mid-term, let alone when people's lives are so grim and difficult at the moment, is a terrible omen for their prospects at a GE.

    But don't worry, I'm sure Captain 'Close the Zoos!' will turn it around for them in no time...
    Bush is arguing in the Newstatesman this weekend that actually given the 'rally around our national leader' effect of the covid crisis the Tories should be further ahead.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 32,795
    edited February 20
    HYUFD said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    It's pragmatic, fiscally conservative, puts the national interest first, and prefers gradual reform to radical change.

    It's been exactly none of those things since 2015.
    Yes it has.

    Despite all the sound and fury Brexit will result in less change for Britain than remaining in an ever changing Europe.
    Do you think substantially greater chances of Irish reunification and Scottish Indy weren’t caused by Brexit or that they wouldn’t really count as ‘change for Britain’?
    I don't think Brexit has led to substantially greater chances of either.

    The SNP won all but three MPs in 2015, before Brexit. They were never going to let sleeping dogs lie and if it wasn't Brexit they would have latched upon anything else instead.

    You don't want Sindy because of Brexit. You want Sindy because you've always wanted Sindy.

    As for the Irish it will depend as it has for decades upon demographics.
    I suggest we can add Northern Irish politics to the list of things you don't really understand.
    If we stopped people commenting on things they don’t understand most threads would be about a tenth of their normal length.

    Anyway no one really understands Northern Irish politics; it’s the Schleswig-Holstein question of our day.
    All true. Nevertheless you don't have to put much effort in to unearth all manner of commentary - from both sides of the divide - setting out how Brexit has changed the political climate in the North. And the last poll I saw had the DUP down at 19%.
    The DUP are facing the same fate as the UUP. They made compromises with Sinn Fein so now a harder more unionist party is seeking to take their votes.

    The DUP made their name as the No No No party but then had to make compromises. Now there's a new No No No party. It's what they do.

    Nothing to do with Brexit. Correlation does not equal causation.
    That's just denial. Go do a bit of reading up on what politicians, academics and commentators actually living there are saying.
    Philip is right on this, in the 2015 general election in NI before Brexit the DUP got 25%, SF got 24%, the SDLP got 13% and the UUP got 16% and the Alliance got 8%.

    At the 2019 general election after the Brexit vote the DUP got 30%, SF got 22%, the SDLP got 14%, the Alliance got 16% and the UUP got 11%.

    So the DUP is actually up on where it was before the Brexit vote, SF is down as is the UUP and the main gainers are the SDLP and particularly the non sectarian Alliance. Any changes since then have been Unionist hardliners moving from DUP to the even harder line TUV over opposition to the NI protocol.

    In Scotland in 2015 before Brexit the SNP got 50%, Labour got 24%, the Tories got 14% and the LDs got 7%. In 2019 after the Brexit vote the SNP got 45%, the Tories got 25%, Labour got 18% and the LDs got 9%.

    So the SNP is actually down in Scotland since the Brexit vote as are Labour and the Tories and LDs have been the main gainers.
    But it isn't a question that can be answered with VI polls. The question is whether Brexit has, and will, make NI's position in the UK more precarious, and advance the likelihood of a united Ireland.
  • Black_RookBlack_Rook Posts: 7,790

    Mr. Rook, voter fraud isn't at horrendous levels, but making voting more secure isn't a bad thing.

    Well, of course, one can also advance that argument, but is that the true intention behind bringing in voter ID? Probably not.
This discussion has been closed.