This was first posted on Facebook on 14th November 2020, with support from my Ko-Fi network.
A few facts.
Trump has stopped dyeing his hair. (No, it is not a toupee, he has a massive combover with tons of product, but it came loose in a good Scottish breeze once when he was here to buy a golf course.) The Ivanka Trump version is that he dyes it himself from a DIY-box, and the reason the colour is so weird is that he’s never had the patience to leave it on the right amount of time.
This was first posted on Facebook on 19th September 2020, with support from my Ko-Fi network.
I assume Oliver Wright, Francis Elliott, and Matt Chorley genuinely thought they were writing an article at the request of Dominic Cummings (I assume it was Big Dom) for three purposes: to make people feel sympathetic towards poor Boris Johnson, who has such a hard life, and also to frame the very slight concession to Tory rebels over the Internal Market Bill as a much bigger U turn than in fact it is, and finally to assure everyone that Boris Johnson is really, truly, a dedicated public servant and a man who intends to fight the 2024 general election.
The Internal Market Bill passed Second Reading last night by 77 votes.
I couldn’t listen to all of the debate – I was working yesterday, having decided to take off Wednesday and Thursday as usual – for PMQs (Keir Starmer will be absent: he is self-isolating as one of his household has shown symptoms of coronavirus) and because Wednesday is the second day of the committee of the whole House examining the bill.
But I listened to enough of the debate, including Boris Johnson’s opening statement presenting the bill (and Ed Miliband’s strong rebuttal – Starmer picked him to sub in, and I have to say, he was terrific) to see very definitely two things.
This was first posted on Facebook on 7th September 2020, with support from my Ko-Fi network. Every time I tried to begin a post here about politics, since Thursday, I kept thinking “But David Graeber is dead.”
David Graeber died in Venice on Wednesday 2nd September. I didn’t know him personally and my sense of loss is only what I feel when a writer I admire and respect and want to keep writing is gone: there will never be any more clear sharp insightful essays and articles from him, never again. He was 59 and I am old enough to feel strongly that this is far too young to die.
I watched PMQs on Wednesday, and Boris Johnson, fresh from his holidays, reacted to Keir Starmer’s questions with an outpouring of poisonous bile. He didn’t look well, not that his illness excuses his behaviour: as John Crace noted, PMQ is essentially a kind of Westminster performance, something perhaps only political afficionados care to watch: but it is a dance with rules, a question followed by an answer, a follow-up question, a follow-up answer. Boris Johnson was interrupted mid-flow by the Speaker, who very gently and politely told him to answer the question. I don’t think I’m inventing this: Lindsay Hoyle looked worried.
This was first posted on Facebook on 14th February 2020, with support from my Ko-Fi network.
I know that right now, the fact of Sajid Javid’s resignation as Chancellor, his replacement as Chancellor by a junior minister who was elected MP in 2015 & before that worked for Goldman Sachs, and the fact that Budget Day for the UK is 11th March and it’s pretty evident that though Rishi Sunak will be presenting the Budget in the Commons, Dominic Cummings will be the Budget’s main author – all of this is more than a little overwhelming, and rightly so.
However, I’d ask you also to consider this:
Filed under Brexit, Politics
This was first posted on Facebook on 4th February 2020, with support from my Ko-Fi network.
Boris Johnson and his Ministers said a lot of stuff over the weekend about breaking the Withdrawal Agreement.
He may actually mean what he said, but we don’t know if he does, because we can’t trust anything Boris Johnson says.
And at the moment, this is all just words. Lots and lots of wild, distracting, frightening words.
This was first posted on Facebook on 18th November 2019, with support from my Ko-Fi network.
I have no idea which of these is most likely to happen in GE2019. But I’m pretty sure one of them will.
For the purposes of this scenario slicing: I’m assuming The Brexit Party Ltd wins no seats. It might, but I don’t think it will win *enough* to make any difference to the balance of power.
If on Friday 13th December we wake up to:
Sir Lindsay Hoyle is the new Speaker of the House.
Technically speaking this was more of a coffin than a Ko-Fi day – I picked up a cold at work, and have been having a miserable weekend. I hope you all had a great time, whatever you were doing.
In fairness, Theresa May never said what would happen if she lost 13 seats.
But here we are.
The Conservative Party has 317 seats in the House of Commons: even allowing for the 7 Sinn Féin MPs who never take their seats, the Tories are five seats short of a majority.
Labour, the SNP, the Liberal Democrats, Plaid Cymru, and the Green Party, have between them got 314 seats.