A New Place Of Exile

Richard Hutton

Category: The Right-Minded View

Enter Boris – into the Prime Ministerial fray, that is.

 

Veritable proof that one can fly without wings

 

Cynicism is the curse of our age; and nowhere is that more prevalent than in responses to Boris Johnson’s hoisting of the political trousers.

Far from being ‘self-serving’ or ‘opportunistic’ (to use the emotive language favoured by the Left, here) Mr Johnson’s penchant for saying one thing, then doing the opposite, is no less than the kind of integrity that I have come to expect from the man – as a matter of course.

Johnson is not one for any mere bandwagon-hopping. Evincing, instead, the rapid circular motion of a man at the peak of his form: one who is more than able to both have cake, and eat it – as his amply-proportioned bosom testifies.

It may very well be true that Mr Johnson owes his existence to a similar comestible vacillation of Mother Nature’s. Having first intended to create a blancmange, then changing her mind midway – thus gifting Boris Johnson, as is, to the world.

But we should all be grateful for small mercies. Especially at a time like this.

One cannot be too careful about a delicate conundrum such as Brexit. It is just the sort of thing which could very quickly turn a most frightful purler, without firm hands holding the reins on Britain’s ship of state.

And that is where Boris Johnson comes into his own.

As a test of his mettle, BJ was tasked with quaffing a full can of Fukushima peach juice. A lesser man might have quailed – but a true Buller always downs it in one.

 

Rightly or wrongly, people judge by appearances – and on that score, Johnson stands peerless: as a fellow of unquestionable swank.

No matter the political storms that rage in the Parliamentary teacup, Mr Johnson’s comb-over has invariably proven unflappable. Not a folicle is ever out of place. Or not so as you’d notice, at any rate.

Would it be a touch flattering to suggest that this is the very epitome of the man? Demonstrating the ingrained British reluctance to surrender, to the steady dawning of reality?

Few may care to venture such liberal odds – but I say fellows of Johnson’s caliber are the very reason why I rank being British among my greatest achievements.

The task ahead remains a daunting one; but with Boris Johnson standing athwart the historical moment, I am certain that the whole Brexit process will prove to be a singularly fruity binge.

And that’s the kind of pledge you can put on the side of a bus.

Why The European Parliamentary Elections Prove Something Or Another – And What To Do About It.

 

 

If one forms judgments via evidence, and the application of logic, then Brexit can be said to have played no straightforward part in the contradictory outcomes of recent elections.

However, numerous commentators, pundits, and professional analysts – all primed for this sort of thing – suggest otherwise.

Not only do these people hold Britain’s most important opinions – but their track-record of getting the big calls correct is simply imperious.

So, we have demonstrable reality on the one hand – and media output on the other. I think we can come down strongly in favour of the latter on this issue.

With that matter resolved, all that remains is the simple question of how to do something or another about it.

Therefore, let us take 48% (the number that voted against leaving the EU), and add 52% (the percentage which favoured departure). Times it by 3 (one wishes to be fair about these things). Then take precisely one third of the resultant figure (a fraction of the sum); before subtracting zero (a negative), and multiplying by one (a positive).

It all adds up to no less than 100% of the electorate. Which is very nearly as good as the entirety.

 

A diagram – explaining this sort of thing in picture form.

 

Now, if my modest calculations are correct – and as of yet, I have seen no reason to believe otherwise – then all anyone need do is the following: craft a pro-Brexit message for the half of Britain who support it. An anti-Brexit message for the half who oppose it. And an ambivalent message, for the half who remain non-plussed.

This can thus be then combined into one compelling message – representing all things to all people: ‘Brexit: yesnomaybe’.

With that in place, it is not at all unreasonable to suggest that any compliant party might be expected to gain fully three halves of the public vote, in any contest you could mention. Its mathematical impossibility not withstanding.

It all rather makes one wish we had just this type of credible party, pragmatising so electably; and saying “yesnomaybe”, right now.

Or so I see it, at any rate.

The Right-Minded View: Theresa May’s Resignation

 

And so it came to pass.

Arguably the most competent British Prime Minister to hold office, since her predecessor resigned, has now stepped down.

Theresa May was all things to all people. Not merely proclaiming that poverty is bad, but continuously voting to increase it, as well. Thereby covering both bases.

And while the Chancellor of the Exchequer may have said one thing – as her Ministers said the opposite; May could be relied upon to say exactly the same as both.

Of course, that strength and stability of leadership met its truest test in the General Election of 2017.

May’s many admirers in the press – some fresh from being a guest of Her Majesty’s Government themselves – lauded her as a safe pair of hands, who was parking her tanks on the Labour Party’s lawn.

And consequently destined for triumph.

A 74 seat Tory majority beckoned.

Wait, 96 seats.

No, 100 seats.

In fact, at least 100 – and that’s even with the 27 the Conservatives were likely to lose to the awe-inspiring Liberal Democrats.

It could be as many as 150 seats.

Maybe even a 200 seat majority for the Tories.

212 seats.

Even Conservative commentators found themselves feeling sorry for the Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, as May’s politics of audacity heralded imminent glory.

And they were magnanimous in their vindication, at the outcome of the vote: as Labour suffered a disastrous improvement of fortunes; and May gained an impressive lost majority.

Some might say May’s politics proved somewhat less audacious than foretold; but no majority is better than a bad majority, I would venture.

 

Theresa May’s defining legacy, however, will be Brexit.

Specifically, the task of delivering a red, white, and blue Brexit.

Or at least one leaving many people feeling blue – with white-coloured flags fluttering aplenty; and countless red faces in evidence. Which is very nearly the same thing; if you think about it.

On that score, May’s achievement stands peerless. Straddling the competing demands of Conservative MPs, and reality, like a veritable colossus.

After two years of relentless, uncompromising negotiation – combining pluck, and determination, with the very best of Britishness – May managed to talk the EU down to no more than its original demands.

Many said it couldn’t be done – but by jingo, it was.

What’s more, May has generously – and graciously – bequeathed this particular chalice, to an equally deserving successor in the Prime Ministerial stakes.

Be it the one who didn’t know Britain was an island. The one who misled Parliament, and resigned. The one who also misled Parliament, and wouldn’t resign – but then did. One of the ones who misled the public, via a well-known bus advert.

Or simply one of the many who needs showing on a doll which parts of someone else’s body they’re not allowed to touch, without permission.

Nigel Farage, the Brexit Party – and the august lance of British destiny!

Nigel Farage is not only the thinking chap’s Brexiteer; but holds compelling claim to being the most successfully unelected candidate in British Parliamentary history.

It is perhaps that tenacity, buttressed with a robust flair for crafting vivid analogies – though these admittedly defy any and all branches of human knowledge – which have seen Farage retain his traditional safeseat of Question Time South, for ten full years and counting.

And I think we can safely say that Farage took the correct attitude towards Johnny Euro from the outset!

What with his firm but fair assessment that none of his fellow MEPs had ever worked a proper job in their lives.

The assembled ranks of ex-surgeons, former schoolteachers – and retired coalminers – simply had no comeback to that whatsoever!

How many of them had ever worked as stock-brokers in the commodities trade? None but Farage, I would venture.

And for those of us who have long since tired of experts, Farage consistently demonstrates a refreshing absence of any expertise, whatsoever, on every last subject he expounds upon.

The type of people who read books are fond of saying that “the only easy thing in life is being wrong – and it is hardly worth the effort”. Well, one man differs: Farage makes the effort!

So, lead on Nigel, I say. And with Farage at the tiller, Johnny Euro won’t mess with old Blighty again, by jingo!

The Right-Minded View: Labour Party MPs quit. Truly a watershed moment in British politics.

Today marks a watershed moment in British politics.

No fewer than a solid handful of MPs have quit the Labour Party, complaining about Jeremy Corbyn. Marking the single greatest realignment of the political landscape, since the last time several MPs quit Labour, complaining about Jeremy Corbyn; not too long ago.

Chris Leslie, Mike Gapes, Angela Smith, Chukka Umunna, Ann Covfefe – and the others, whose names I can’t recall offhand. These are huge figures of the Labour Movement.

Giants, even. Heroes. Heroes – who traversed British politics, with colossal strides.

These people were the Labour Party. The Labour Party was them.

And to think that these MPs have finally reached breaking-point – have just darn well had enough – a mere two years after they began briefing journalists about their intentions to defect; and then started receiving donations to fund their endeavor.

Nor could it be a more principled stand. If there is one thing that these MPs simply will not abide, it is racism. Prejudice. Common xenophobia.

If what I read in the papers is anything to go by, then the Labour party started being a hotbed of racism, the very instant it elected a life-long anti-racism campaigner to be its leader.

One who refuses to listen to the very real concerns that the same news outlets express, every day, about foreigners and minorities. Concerns which most of the seven MPs themselves have long insisted must be listened to; voting accordingly.

And they are only too right to balk at Labour’s acceptance of Brexit, as well – quite rightly drawing the line at Jeremy Corbyn’s refusal to simultaneously support and oppose Brexit.

Now, admittedly, they all voted to conduct the EU referendum of 2016. What their critics fail to realise, however, is that democracy might be all well and good – but not if people are going to be silly, and vote the wrong way. No.

No. Then their elected betters must take back control.

The way I see it, what this country is crying out for is a credible, electable, moderate, sensible, pragmatic, electable, aspirational, moderate, credible, electable Centrist party. Pragmatising electably from the centre of the centre; and saying “yesnomaybe” across a wide range of issues, right now!

And how Corbyn can possibly hope to manage without future input from the tactical masterminds who devised the EdStone, is quite frankly beyond me. He clearly owes them a debt of gratitude; if not a big apology.

 

Food for everyone’s thought, there.

Why won’t Jeremy Corbyn simply stop Brexit? It defies reason.

It really is a mystery why Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t simply give the word, and instantly reverse Brexit. It’s not as if the task could be any easier.

All he needs to do is moan about it a bit: tut now and then, while giving a roll of the eyes – say it’s a bad idea, and all that. Then everyone will live happily ever after.

For proof – look no further than the barnstorming success of the Liberal Democrats in this very venture; after they adopted a Remain or Die approach to electioneering – and promptly reaped the dividends.

In the General Election of 2015, the Lib Dems faltered to a measly 7.9% of the vote.

But in the contest of 2017, they romped home to an incredible 7.4% of the vote.

If only Corbyn firmed-up his plans in like manner, and stopped putting principle before power (or power before principle, I can’t remember which one applies now) then he might enjoy the same enviable record.

And let us not forget that this is all his doing in the first place.

True, the Conservative Party decided to conduct the referendum. While their ministers campaigned for Brexit; and virtually the entire press kept saying European migration was a terrible, uncontrollable menace – even though they knew it wasn’t true.

But if Corbyn had only rated the EU 7.6/10, instead of 7.5/10, then the United Kingdom would still be in the EU. Admittedly, it still is in the EU – but this is beside the point.

It may very well be the case that the Tories bought a Parliamentary majority – ensuring they would have more votes than all of their opponents combined; so any policies they pursue cannot be defeated by opposition MPs.

But that is a pretty basic impossibility to defy.

Yet does Corbyn make the effort to invert mathematics? I think we all know the answer there.

What’s more, he perversely refuses to support a second referendum – even after the first one went so well; meaning that a sequel would be more than welcome.

In sum: Jeremy Corbyn clearly owes us all a big apology.

For shame.

How to solve the Irish border conundrum in a sensible and timely manner: post-Brexit, post-haste.

Lot of hue and cry being made about a potential hardening of the Irish border. Respectable folk want to know what’s coming in and out, of course; but without any silly bother.

Bit of a sticking point, over how to square the circle (so to speak). How to make it all ship-shape – and keep it all cricket.

To a man of my experience however – of at least some few years and counting – it all seems rather frightfully straightforward.

Let us solve the Irish border conundrum, simply by applying the Cartesian equation y(a2 + x2) = abx; and thereby turning it into a sort of wavy, sort of looping sort of shape.

Thus:

 

 

Highly irregular, I know – but extraordinary times like ours call for a bit of creative thinking; and I say few will be disappointed with this.

And any shortfalls can be made good by using technology. Silicon chips, zeppelins, flags – things like that.

Need not restrict ourselves, however.

I’ve done a bit of research; and happened to chance upon several alternative proposals – which would undoubtedly serve the purpose no less adequately.

For example, the European Research Group’s preferred arrangement:

With which, I must own, I can find no particular fault.

Along with the British government’s own striking blueprint:

So, people really are making too much fuss.

Apart from those few, who are determined to find fault in everything, this array of options will undoubtedly prove much to everybody’s satisfaction. And you can’t say fairer than that.

The Right-Minded View: would replacing Jeremy Corbyn crush the Tories?

It is not difficult to surmise why a plethora of right-wing pundits might want Labour to supplant the left-wing leader, who recently led his party to 40% of the public vote.

Because the kind-hearted, approbative souls that they are simply want what is best for their political opponents, I would aver.

Now, I’d be the last to admit that I am no expert on such matters; but if I have learned anything about public opinion from the topical news publications, then I can say with assurance that our political landscape would be comprehensively transformed, by the simple adjunct of one or two minor tweaks.

Thus, I submit the following prediction of vote-share, in the event of any upcoming General Election:

  • Labour, led by someone like that Macron fellow: 75% of the popular vote.
  • Tories: a respectable 40-43%. Fair play, there.
  • Lib Dems: a solid 55% (don’t ask, don’t tell is advisable here).
  • A New Centrist Party, which supports and opposes Brexit: 76%.
  • Another New Centrist Party, which doesn’t: 14.5%.
  • Any further New Centrist Parties: ibid. [1]

That is how I see the electorate unfolding, at least; and I am very rarely wrong about these things [2].

Therefore the upshot is perfectly clear: Labour merely need to clone Emmanuel Macron, perhaps extracting his DNA from a superfluous follicle; and with sufficient time allowed for gestation, fully three halves of the electorate’s vote will be theirs.

I really cannot understand why they have not done this already.

I would add as a precautionary note, however, that the aim of this cloning gambit should be a Boys from Brazil-type scenario, rather than any Jurassic Park-esque flapdoodle.

But we need not be too particular.

 

[1] Total electorate: 278%

Sample: 12 people – who all seemed perfectly normal, so far as I could tell.

 

[2] For example, I predicted that Labour would be obliterated at the General Election of 2017; with Theresa May gaining a 100 seat majority – resulting in a lifetime of Tory government.

And, if you replace some of the words, with ones which have a different meaning, I stand vindicated.

The Right-Minded View: Frank Field’s resignation – the peril of too many principles?

 

Common decency itself stands imperiled? Then it must be defended, with all our might!

And there is only one fellow who can but fail to see us right on that score.

I refer, of course, to the unknighted Sir Frank Field – who remains without knighthood solely because he considers the honour beneath him; and would only ever accept a higher accolade.

Field has never fully deserved his reputation as a radical left-wing firebrand, in my view. Even his admirers have been compelled to describe him as “not without competence” – on more than one occasion.

In fact, I recall only too well the time he regaled a crowd of onlookers with the most moving story of a malfunctioning photocopier that I have ever had the privilege to hear with my own eyes. Displaying an astute ear for the rhythms and cadences of colloquial speech all the while.

These, and similar profundities, would shore up any traditional vote.

What’s more, during a Q and A session afterwards – when accosted by a saucy young activist – Field demonstrated his adept handling of even the most taxing conundrum.

While I did not quite hear the point of inquiry put to the truly great man, I can quote his answer verbatim:

“Neither you, nor I – nor the parlour maid – may rightfully demand an answer to the question ‘which vegetable?'”

And if Field can muster such sangfroid, in such circumstances, then I have every confidence in his ability to becalm even the most boisterous gallimaufry that fate and the continentals may conspire to unleash upon us, between them.

No easy task, in this day and age.

The Right-Minded View: now is the time for a Centrist movement.

There has never been a better moment for a new centrist movement, in my opinion, than now.

Admittedly, there are currently more centrist parties than centrist voters these days. Nonetheless, it’s time to re-draw the political map, by stir-frying some bold ideas into the strategy wok.

While those of a tribalist mien say: changing things, by keeping them the same, is impossible.

I say: moderate progress, within the bounds of the law – or else perfidy beckons.

And that is the key here – you can’t just go around bally well changing things. Not when it could impact upon even the most respectable members of society.

However, it is evidently of the utmost urgency that we deliver an invigorating dose of moral fibre to the nation’s political gullet.

So, what I propose therefore, is a healthy compromise.

Every day, two minutes can be set aside – as a matter of legal obligation – and a picture of Jeremy Corbyn with the word ‘Brexit’ superimposed onto his forehead, is beamed into every public place throughout the land.

Thereafter, people shall be given a full 120 seconds to vent the full array of their splenetic juices, for all they are worth.

Because of economies of scale and such, this timeframe could be extended in those parts of the country which are harder to penetrate; and reduced in locales where people are likely to reach boiling point, at what would – in other circumstances – be an alarming rate.

So this seems like the kind of thing that could work really well; and truly unite the country, once again.

Meanwhile, we can keep everything else the same – and go back to deploring the old foodbanks and wars (etc) as a matter of regrettable necessity. Just like we were doing before the dread day of June 23rd, 2016.

Significantly, politicians never misled anyone, or did anything really bad, before that juncture. Not so as you’d notice, at least. Though the trajectory has declined, ineluctably, ever since.

As for those people suggesting that the government of 1945 was considered revolutionary-left, and denounced as extreme by the Centrists of its day – I can only hope that someone is able to go back in time, and correct the historical record, for all our benefit.