A New Place Of Exile

Richard Hutton

Category: Uncategorized

The Big Debate – Keir Starmer’s first performance at PMQs. Good, terrible, okay, or both?


Arthur Blair – politics journalist

This was an assured first outing, from Starmer.

Measured, probing, informed, courteous, calm, forensic, authoritative, and measured: a serious adult in the room, at last. At long last.

I actually cried. Me – a grown man – weeping real tears; at the thought we could have had someone like this as leader of the Opposition during the past few years.

Lost years, in many respects – when Trotskyite-Stalinists ruled Labour; and Momentum thugs roamed the internet: terrorising the good professionals of British journalism, by saying they were wrong about things.

All that on top of making a once great party unelectable – by virtue of their clandestine Brexiteering; and their general unwillingness to listen to the legitimate concerns about free-movement, that all normal people hold.

If only Starmer had been given a position of Shadow Ministerial significance – maybe had some input into Labour’s Brexit policies – how different everything would be.

Today, we saw the dawn of a new age, however. An era of credible politics, for sensible people only.

For instance, instead of saying that the government has been tardy with Covid testing, and needs to improve (as his predecessor was fond of doing); Starmer took a grown-up approach. Namely, suggesting that the government was too slow to react; and should aim to do better.

It was like watching Harry Potter wrong-foot Voldemort, combined with the most stirring speeches about cross-party compromise, from episodes of the West Wing.

I feel represented, for the first time since Change UK became insolvent. After a 5 year absence, Britain has an Opposition again – of the kind not seen since the unveiling of the Edstone.

Why, even Conservative politicians and commentators were effusive with their praise for Starmer – and no sensible person would ever question their sincerity.



Jolyon D’Isscorse – host of the Left Behind podcast 

The Starmer-cult may have found their messiah, but this was an underwhelming performance; with Sir Kier proving singularly unable to park his tanks on the government’s lawn.

Starmeristas won’t want to hear this, but their beloved leader lacks electability. Under any other person, Labour would be 20 points ahead of the Tories right now, given the state they’re in. This is the worst government ever!

It pains me to say it – I’m just as left-wing as he is, on some things – but I think it’s time for Keir Starmer to go. How many more of us must find ourselves politically-homeless before he does the decent thing, and resigns?

Believe me, I say this with no pleasure at all: I’ve been a lifelong Labour supporter, since 2012; and I support all the same causes as Starmer. Mostly. But we have to beat the Tories – for the sake of voters who depend upon us. And it’s just not working out, is it? 

I hate to say it, but I’ve not heard a single good word about Labour on the doorstep, since Starmer took over. Everybody I’ve spoken to says the same thing: Starmer is just not up to the job – and he’s only keeping the Tories in power. 

I believe Keir is a good man – and I want to see his programme enacted as much as the next socialist; but, if we are to achieve that goal, we have to consider Starmerism without Starmer.

Having principles is all very well, but if you can’t win power, you can’t make a difference to people’s lives. Unfortunately, Labour is now a party of protest.



Rosa Goldman – occasionally posts comments about politics on social media

It was neither particularly good, nor especially bad. I hope people don’t get carried away by hype from pundits with ulterior motives, and notoriously fallible judgement, just because they’re being told what they want to hear.

Also, that the Labour Left avoid repeating the mistakes of the Labour Right, by finding fault with everything; instead of being more objective.

Only time will tell if Starmer is good or bad overall, though, I think.

Transcript of the Cabinet’s COBRA meeting about Coronavirus



Boris Johnson, Gavin Williamson, Matt Hancock, Dominic Raab, Dominic Cummings, Rishi Sunak, a Civil Servant.


Johnson: If you ask me, somebody ought to just jolly well do something about this bally virus. It’s not on, I say, dash it.

Civil Servant: We await your orders, eagerly, Prime Minister.

Johnson: Ah, er, I mean, um, which is to say, of course, if, if, well, that is, if, and then, and when, and also, I mean, especially, what, gad-gad-gadzooks, man! What?

Raab: Can’t we use 3D printers to just, you know, print the cure?

Johnson: Can we – can’t we do that?

Civil Servant: There is no cure at present, Sir.

Cummings: Has anyone checked online for information about the cure, like I suggested?

Williamson: I have – there was quite a lot about it, in fact. Wikipedia says “The Cure are an English rock band, formed in Crawley, West Sussex, in 1978”. “Still active”, it adds here.

Cummings: Shut up, Gavin.

Hancock: What if we outsmart this virus, by using reverse psychology. Say to the virus: ‘go ahead – we want you to infect everyone, so they all die; we don’t care’?

Johnson: No, no – then it will know our tactics, and outflank us. Think harder.

Hancock: I find that sometimes the best way to think, is to avoid thinking at all.

Cummings: A practice at which we excel.

Williamson: Could we not just tell the virus to shut up and go away?

Johnson: Gavin, please. This is a serious business; and I want sensible suggestions only.

Raab: Could we use the army, to shoot the virus, with guns?

Johnson: No. Can we?

Civil Servant: Indeed not, Sir.

Cummings: You people are stupid. And that’s why you people are stupid – because you’re stupid.

Williamson: I’m not stupid. I think very hard, and am almost always right.

Johnson: That’s enough. Now, think, dash it, chaps. Think harder than you’ve ever thought before.

Civil Servant: Are you sure that will be necessary, Sir?

Hancock: I read something the other day, and according to an authority…

Johnson: An authority on what?

Hancock: Countryside churches.

Johnson: No, no.

Raab: Thinking. Thinking.

Sunak: Perhaps the smartest strategy is to have no strategy?

Cummings: We’ve already got that nailed.

Raab: Thinking. Thinking.

Williamson: Can I think as well?

Civil Servant: There is a first time for everything, Sir.

Johnson: Right, I’ve got it! By jingo, I have.

Civil Servant: Yes, Sir?

Johnson: Well, now, it seems to me…

Civil Servant: Sir?

Johnson: If, if my calculations are correct…

Civil Servant: Sir?

Johnson: And some fair few of those continge-thingies hold steady…

Civil Servant: Contingencies, Sir.

Johnson: Yes, those – that what we should do is…is…is…

Civil Servant: Sir?

Johnson: Approximately…

Civil Servant: Go on, Sir?

Johnson: Where was I?

Civil Servant: You must tell us your plan, Sir.

Johnson: Really? Right. Yes. Yes. What if, instead of fighting this virus thing, we all just, well, you know, voice our disapproval of its comings and goings, and all that sort of jazz, instead? Tell it what for. Leave it in no doubt about who is really in charge.

Civil Servant: The situation would seem to demand a more robust approach, Sir.

Johnson: Really? I thought I had it there.

Raab: I have an idea.

Johnson: About what?

Raab: I’m not sure – I hadn’t thought that far ahead.

Williamson: Wait, I’ve got it. I know what we need.

Johnson: What?

Williamson: A plan.

Johnson: Well, what is it?

Williamson: A plan? It’s a sort of, like, kind of detailed proposal – for achieving something.

Raab: Could be just what we need.

Sunak: At times like this, I say we should listen to the science. Do whatever the science tells us.

Johnson: What does the science tell us?

Raab: [Reads from phone] Oh, oh – ‘low battery’.

Johnson: Any different science to hand?

Hancock: [Shakes Magic 8 ball] ‘concentrate and ask again’.

Johnson: Ah. Very well. And, so, again?

Hancock: [Shakes Magic 8 ball] ‘better not tell you now’.

Civil Servant: If I may quote the health briefing, which evaluates the government’s present course of action, Sir.

Johnson: Yes?

Civil servant: 250,000 deaths, Sir.

Johnson: Lummy, what? Bit of a rum to do there, chaps. Nevertheless, it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make.

*murmurs of assent*

Sunak: How many preventable deaths can we submit, and still get re-elected?

Johnson: Ah. Good question. Pertinent. Pertinent. Any ideas?

Civil Servant: Quarter of a million would seem excessive, Sir.

Johnson: Quarter of a mill? Is that more, or less, than 250,000?

Civil servant: Correct me if I’m wrong Sir, but would quarantine not be advisable?

Johnson: Quarantine?

Civil Servant: Restrict peoples’ movement, to contain the outbreak, Sir.

Johnson: Ah, I see. I see. People can just spend a week, indoors, doing nothing. We shall lead by example!

Civil Servant: You appear to have said the quiet part loud, and the loud part quiet, Sir.

Cummings: This really is a quandary. On the one hand, we can do something. On the other, we can do nothing.

Hancock: It’s impossible to say which of those is the best course of action, to stave off disaster.

Williamson: What can anyone do, if we rule-out doing anything?

Johnson: Wait, I’ve got it – I really have this time.

Civil Servant: Really, Sir?

Johnson: This is nothing that a brisk walk, and bit of British resolve can’t cure – or I’ll be bound!

Civil Servant: Are you quite certain, Sir?

Johnson: Certainly. Everyone should just jolly well go outdoors, and breath deep in the fresh air.

Civil Servant: Are you sure that’s wise, Sir?

Johnson: Um. On second thoughts, everyone should, should just jolly well stay indoors; and hold their breath until this thing blows over.

Civil Servant: Indeed, Sir?

Johnson: In fact, everyone should just jolly well do both – and do neither; at the same time! Meeting adjourned. Now, who’s for a game of cribbage?


Briefing for journalists

We need civility in politics. Not competence. Politics should never be political.

The Prime Minister did not make an error of judgement. It was the facts which were wrong. The science may have changed, but his opinion never shall.

Besides, the other guy offered free internet. And while people may die, due to government inaction, at least they’ll die under a PM that can sing the national anthem, dash it. Most of it, at any rate.

Further measures will be undertaken, as the situation develops.

Hijacked Labour – Jeremy Corbyn’s extraordinary network of extra-ordinary influence

As compiled by senior officers of a British army, using advanced Spirograph techniques, the Sun newspaper has published a map detailing one Jeremy Corbyn’s network of influence – with a dazzling array of felt-pen colours:


I can now reveal the key contacts in full.


Jeremy Corbyn: present-day leader of the Labour Party. Arrived at this position through the classic Stalinesque method of winning a democratic vote. Retained office via the notorious Trotskyite ploy of emerging victorious in a second leadership election. Trotskyite-Stalinists are renowned for being the worst kind, of course – and some may even be communists, too.

Maureen X (surname unknown – possibly a pseudonym): canteen worker in the Parliamentary café. Is believed to have served Corbyn cups of hard-left coffee, and the odd slice of unelectable toast.

Russia’s government: controls world events using Facebook adverts. Famed for its ruthless efficiency – like attacking British trawlers off the coast of France, believing them to be submarines off the coast of Japan. Responsible for all current failings of Britain’s government between 2010-present. A fortnight’s wait to see your GP? Look no further.

Genghis Khan: leader of the Mongol Hordes. Noted for his unsparing cruelty, Khan united the nomadic tribes of North East Asia; before razing and pillaging the continent. Died several centuries before Corbyn was born. Coincidence? We can’t be too careful.

Starfish Hitler: principle villain from the low-budget Japanese television series Kamen Rider – combining the evilness of Hitler, with the regenerative powers of a starfish. If eye-witness accounts are to be credited, whenever Jeremy Corbyn is about to sneeze, he raises his hand – and we all know who else liked to raise their hand, now, don’t we?

Chips: foodstuff derived from the great British potato. Fine in moderation – but contributing to the nation’s chronic obesity epidemic, when consumed in excess. According to a senior Labour Party source, speaking in confidence, Corbyn grows potatoes under an ideologically-pure crop rotation scheme on his personal gulag (or ‘allotment’, as he describes it).


So I think you’ll agree that this devastating exposé is not only shocking, but provides clear and irrefutable proof of something, as well.

Food for everyone’s thought, there.

General Election Condensed


• Great polices

• Great Ideas

• Incompetent



• Terrible policies

• Terrible ideas

• Incompetent


Liberal Democrats 

• No policies

• No ideas

• Incompetent


Scottish National Party 

• Place different flags on buildings

• Keep everything else the same

• Incompetent


Overall outlook:

A drastic improvement, on previous elections.