Theresa May’s government continues to reach new standards. There you were, thinking that David Mundell had smashed all world records for clueless secretaries of state for devolved nations, and was the sole contender for Norman Wisdom political cup, which is the only form of wisdom anyone in this Conservative government could aspire to, and then along comes the Northern Irish secretary Karen Brady going, “Haud ma coat so I can trip up over it.”
This week, Karen Bradley admitted that she didn’t know that the electorate in Northern Ireland votes along sectarian lines. Speaking in an interview with the in-house magazine of the Houses of Parliament, Karen presented this nugget of insight, or more accurately, presented herself as a nugget. “I didn’t understand things like when elections are fought, for example, in Northern Ireland – people who are nationalists don’t vote for unionist parties and vice versa. So, the parties fight for election within their own community.”
In terms of grasping the nuances of the political landscape of Northern Ireland, that’s very much like admitting that you didn’t realise that hills are the high bits and valleys the low bits. It’s like admitting that you always thought baby oil was made from actual babies. It’s like thinking that Greenland must be covered with a dense rainforest because otherwise it would be called Iceland. It’s like thinking that you don’t have to stop in a drive through.
This clueless individual is now changing the rules relating to elections to Stormont, to prevent another election in the near future. She’s not doing this out of concern for the well being of the people of Northern Ireland, she’s doing it because the British Government is terrified that if there is an election soon, the people of Northern Ireland, frustrated and angry as they are with the Brexit process, might very well elect a majority to Stormont in favour of reunification.
To paraphrase Albert Einstein. “Two things are infinite. The universe and the stupidity of the Conservative party; and I’m not sure about the universe.” If there is indeed a purpose to the rank stupidity of this Conservative government, it can only be to test our anger management skills. Talk sense to these fools and they retort that you’re being foolish, because they are too stupid to realise just how dangerously stupid they are.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion, this is true. But that doesn’t mean all opinions are equal. It may be your opinion that the Moon is made of green cheese or that the Earth is flat, but that doesn’t make your opinion as valid as the opinion of a professor of geology or astronomy who has actually studied the processes of formation of the Earth and its Moon. It means you are a perfect candidate for a position in Theresa May’s cabinet. The opinion that no deal is better than a bad deal is the flat Earthism of modern British politics. Unfortunately we can’t send them off to the Moon where they can make trade deals involving all the cheese there. We’re only left with a vote on Scottish independence as a realistic way out, only of course the fools call this foolish.
It was Napoleon who said that in politics, stupidity is not a handicap. The careers of members of this Conservative government make that abundantly clear. We’re living in a kakistocracy, which is Greek for the government of the shittiest.
There is however a serious point here. Quite clearly Karen Bradley was not selected for her job because she was the best qualified person to deal with the sensitive and delicate issue of a Northern Ireland which is poised on the brink of a hard border with the Republic and the destuction by the British government of the settlement which has underpinned peace in the province for the past 20 years. She got the job because of internal political manoeuvering within the Conservative party.
Quite frankly, that is a gobsmacking dereliction of duty by a British government. Karen Bradley’s appointment makes it abundantly clear that this Conservative government has precisely the square root of hee-haw’s interest in doing what is right by Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. Even the most serious and difficult political issue in these islands, one which has cost thousands of lives, isn’t enough to make them care. People could die, but the Brexists will still pursue their dreams of English nationalism disguised as Great British in order to allow it to masquerade as not being nationalist at all.
It is obvious from the antics of a Labour opposition which is so wrapped up in internal fueding that it cannot make a dent on the polling of even this government of kakistocrats that it offers no relief, no escape route. That’s because they are kakistocrats too. Labour in Scotland is no better, consistently using Holyrood as a forum to raise questions about matters which are reserved to Wesminster in order to make some spurious SNPbad point. This week Richard Leonard and Neil Findlay are demanding that the Scottish Government ban mesh implants from the Scottish NHS.
Vaginal mesh implants were used as a treatment for female incontinence, prolapse, and birth related injuries, but have caused serious and painful health complications in many women. Yet the Scottish Government can’t ban them, because banning them is a matter for the UK wide Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority, the control of which is reserved to Westminster. The Scottish Government did suspend their general use in 2014, something that’s only just happening in England now, and instituted an inquiry into their use, something that patients in England are still waiting for. The use of mesh implants is still widespread in Wales, where Labour controls the NHS. It was only a couple of months ago that the Welsh Government accepted a report saying that mesh implants should only be used as a last resort. The Labour led Welsh Government is resisting calls for an inquiry. Labour in Scotland is demanding a ban that’s outwith the powers of the Scottish Government, but the Labour-led government in Wales is still supporting mesh implants being offered by the Welsh NHS. (See here: https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/health/barbaric-vaginal-mesh-implant-still-12910737)
Labour in Scotland knows fine well which powers are reserved and which are devolved. They just don’t care. They are more interested in petty point scoring. It’s even more of a scandal that the Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament allows them to ask these questions and doesn’t rule them out of order. Ken Macintosh was pretty keen to rule out the EU Continuity Bill as being outwith the competence of the Scottish Government. But hey. SNPbad.
In a government of kakistocrats, we’re all left covered in crap. British politics are irretrievably broken. There’s nothing we can do to influence the British government, and the British government is supremely unconcerned with our interests or desires. It’s time to switch it off and switch on an independent Scotland. Then at least if we are governed by kakistocrats we’ll be able to vote them out of office. The single biggest advantage of Scottish independence is that it means that the people of Scotland will be able to keep those with power close to them, so that their arses are within kicking distance of our feet.
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