Vileness in waiting

Yet another wannabe Tory leader has joined the Tory leadership contest. This time it’s someone you’ve never heard of, which could be considered a positive attribute given that the only reason you’ve ever heard of any of the rest of them is because they’re vile. Sadly we can be pretty certain that Mark Harper – see, I told you you’d never heard of him – isn’t really some saint, he’s just vileness in waiting. Proof of this resides in the fact that when he was Minister for Immigration, he had advertising lorries drive around areas with a high migrant population telling people to grass up their neighbours for being in the country illegally. Then he had to resign because he employed a cleaner who was in the country illegally.

Before we get into this article, I should, in my defence, point out that I did try to write a serious article about the Conservative leadership contest. It’s just that it is impossible to write profoundly about some deeply shallow people none of whom would merit serious consideration for the post of manager of a medium sized branch of Tesco Express, even if they do share a love for plastering Union Jacks on everything. It would be easier to write a nobel literature prize winning novel about the emotional and intellectual range of the Telly Tubbies. Sometimes when you’re staring desolation in the face, gallows humour is all that is left.

This beauty parade of misfits, careerists, opportunists, and people who want to run the country but don’t know how to use a comb will eventually be whittled down to two by Tory MPs. The final choice of who gets to be the next Prime Minister of the UK will be made by 100,000 predominantly elderly white men who’d enthusiastically throw their hats in the ring if the post of torturer for the Spanish Inquisition was an elected position and many of whom last cast their vote for Nigel Farage. But it’s another referendum that’s the real threat to British democracy.

The Tory leadership election is like Love Island, in which a large cast of stupid people compete with one another to see who is the most self-regarding. The only difference is that the Tory leadership candidates are physically as well as morally repellent. In a battle of wits they’d only be half prepared. This is the election where all the candidates are so bad that Tory MPs are forming a bloc to prevent Dominic Raab from getting through to the final two, because the teddy bear tied to the grill of a bin lorry that is Boris Johnson isn’t the worst of them.

Dominic Raab is the kind of person who believes that disabled people would be a lot healthier if they went jogging more, and in order to encourage them to do so he’ll confiscate their wheelchairs. His main claim on the leadership is that he’s the one who’d look the best in a blackshirt uniform. His brand of economics is more extreme even than Thatcher’s, and he believes that the UK’s economic problems are largely due to the fact that British workers are lazy. Clearly he has personal experience of this, as he himself was too lazy to bother reading the 34 page long Good Friday Agreement even though he was the Brexit Secretary in charage of negotiating a deal on the Irish Border. Dominic is just one of the Tory leadership candidates who is the son of immigrants and who’s standing on a platform that would keep his parents out of the country. Well that’s one way of avoiding those awkward family gatherings with embarrassing relatives. Dominic’s parents must be so relieved.

The really scary thing is that it’s not just Dominic Raab. There’s some way to go before Boris Johnson is the worst option. This is the candidate list that makes Rory Stewart seem like the sensible one, and he’s the one who’s confessed to accidentally smoking opium at a wedding when he thought his host was only offering the pudding course.

Prior to this contest Rory is best known for his appearance on a radio interview in which he claimed that 80% of the public supported the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal. He later was forced to admit that he’d made the number up to “illustrate what I believe”. If only he had written the number on the side of a bus, he’d be the leading contender right now. Other than that he has appeared in whacko documentaries, and has the unfortunate air of an extra from Lord of the Rings who was thrown off set for making the Orcs look sexy. Rory has much rumoured links with the intelligence services, which he denies, leading some to speculate darkly that the entire mess of Brexit is a conspiracy to get Rory into power, even though deliberately creating that degree of incompetence is far beyond the competence of any British institution. And Rory is the best one on offer. He at least gives the impression of thinking, if not the substance. Just like the rest of them, Rory would deny the people of Scotland their democratic right to decide their own future on their own terms. It’s just that he’d be more polite about it.

Then there’s Esther McVey. Esther suffers from the delusion that being crass is an effective substitute for a personality, or indeed basic humanity. Esther was brought up in Liverpool during the 1980s when the city was being devastated by the effects of Thatcherism. That’s what you need to remember when recalling Esther’s statement that “It takes a very special kind of personality to grow up in Liverpool the same time I did and then join the Conservative party.” Well yes, Esther, that’s one way of putting it.

When she’s not defending the rape clause or saying that social security payments for disabled people should be cut because “bodies heal”, Esther is a woman who believes that parents always know what’s best for their children. You know, like antivaxxers during a measles epidemic, or Jack Nicholson’s character in The Shining. Esther doesn’t want children to learn that gay people exist, in case it gives them the dangerously radical idea that being different might not be wrong. Perhaps a more pressing question is at what age should a responsible parent allow their child to know that Esther McVey exists.

Then there’s Matt Hancock, whose lack of talent is inversely proportional to his ambition. Which to be fair could be said about the lot of them. Matt recently said that he’s against another Scottish independence referendum “because we live in a democracy”. Because we live in a democracy we shouldn’t have any of that nonsense about public votes or holding politicians to account for their promises. Hell no. Instead we should allow a small and unrepresentative self-selected group of elderly right wing bigots to choose our leaders instead, because that’s totes democratic.

Sajid Javid, like Dominic, wants to keep his relatives out of the country. And to be fair if they are anything like Sajid we should consider this a small mercy. Sajid is the reason why Alan Partridge is a recognisable character. Sajid became very popular in Scotland this week, after telling the country that he wouldn’t allow it to have another independence referendum. Sajid is now the go-to guy for Scottish people seeking permission to turn the TV channel, buy a slightly more expensive brand of toilet paper, or have jam on their pieces. We are now all hoping for the next great pronouncement from The Saj, in which he will definitively rule on whether it’s toasted or roasted cheese.

Michael Gove, unlike Sajid, is actually Scottish, however no Scottish person would dream of asking his permission for anything as Michael has revealed himself to be one of those self-loathing Scots who infest middle management in southern England. It’s not enough just to torture his accent out of existence, Michael passes the time at the golf club by making jokes about Scottish beggars on the Tube. When he was Education Minister in England, he sent copies of the bible to every school, each inscribed with his name. It’s not that Michael imagines that he is God, he thinks he’s better than that.

Then there’s the one man rhyming slang dictionary that is Jeremy Hunt. Having distinguished himself as the least popular health secretary in history, Jeremy’s sole saving grace is that he’s not actually Chris Grayling. He has no chance as leader however, since he voted remain in the EU referendum and the Tory membership want a swivel eyed Brexiter. That’s where we are now people, not even the guy who tried to privatise the English NHS by stealth is right wing enough for the Tory party.

Andrea Leadsom was the main challenger against Theresa May the last time round, and was distinguishable mainly for her claim that she was more fit for the leadership because she was a mother. Since the Tory leadership candidates are mostly remarkable for their lack of self-awareness, maturity, or insight, they do very much resemble toddlers, so perhaps Andrea has a point. Her main claim to fame is that she has a long running personal dispute with Speaker of the House John Bercow after John referred to her as a stupid woman, so if she did become leader it might be worth it just for the drama. Andrea claimed it was sexist to refer to her as a stupid woman, even though she is stupid. She’s a hardline Brextremist who’d be happy to take the UK out of the EU without a deal, but that’s not stupid at all, oh no.

There’s a selection of also-rans and no-hopers. There’s James Cleverly, who is living proof that nominative determinism isn’t a thing. Kit Malthouse, whose sole claim to fame is that he managed to come up with a proposal for Brexit which sounded like an episode of the Big Bang Theory, and was equally unfunny. The Malthouse Compromise was immediately rejected by the EU, but Tory leadership hopefuls aren’t the sort who’ll let reality get in the way of their dreams. They’re like those spectacularly hopeless individuals who appear in the early elimination stages of Britain’s Got Talent. They’re only there so that they’ll have a story to tell their pals in the pub in ten years time.

And finally, we get to Boris Johnson, the runaway favourite with the Tory party membership. This weekend Boris was recommended by Donald Trump, which all by itself ought to tell you how dreadful he’s going to be. Boris is lazier than any of the workers castigated by Dominic Raab, has a greater sense of entitlement than the Word of God that is Michael Gove, is posher than Rory Stewart, less competent than Jeremy Hunt, and is more full of himself than The Saj. But he delivers it all in a carefully constructed clownish persona that is calculated to appeal to a certain type of voter, the kind of voter who’s a Tory party member, the kind of voter who believes in English nationalism. He’s all artifice and no art, all wittering and no wit. Unless he manages to self-destruct his own campaign, which is not unlikely, he’ll be the next Prime Minister.

Meanwhile Scotland gets to sit on the sidelines, our future to be decided by people who know nothing about us and who care even less.  How’s that promise that we could only remain a part of the EU if we voted against independence working out? How’s that promise that no Westminster government would alter the devolution settlement without the express consent of the Scottish Parliament panning out?  How’s that valued and equal partner in a family of nations, how’s that punching above our weight, how’s that best of both worlds working out for Scotland? You can be certain that those are not questions which preoccupy any of the Tory leadership contenders.  They’re just queueing up to tell us that they won’t allow us to hold them account.

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28 comments on “Vileness in waiting

  1. I’m English in England. I’m on the same flight as you are. I can see the crash looming same as you. But you’re in the seat next to me, with a parachute. How do you think I feel ?

    • I sympathise with you and with the many other people who are in the same situation. How about a campaign to make the BBC report on what is happening in the UK, not just in London and England. (See Angus Roberston on this in today’s National.)

      I’ve sat through many reports on the general BBC news which discuss important issues as if they apply to the whole of the UK, when in fact, it is an English story. The recent report on the NHS ‘in the UK’ is a case in point. The report was that GP surgeries were closing and there was a passing reference to Scotland but nowhere was it said that the SNHS is different and that while it still has problems it is nowhere near as bad as in England.

      I have complained to the BBC previously about this kind of slipshod and inaccurate reporting and their reply was that they have to present a ‘balanced’ report and that Scottish news is presented elsewhere. They did not address my point that in order to present a balanced report they have to include information about Scotland, Wales and NI as well.

      The English population is being starved of information about other parts of the UK and hence there is little chance of letting England see that there is another way of running a country than the way pursued by the Tory government.

      This is no comfort, I know, but sharing information is a start.

      • Interpolar says:

        I agree with all your saying. But on the specific point of the NHS, why does the SG not just get on with renaming it The Scottish Health Service (SHS) or similar?

    • weegingerdug says:

      Come join us. We have plenty of parachutes.

    • Come on up, Gordon, there’s plenty of room.
      I favour a Resettlement Grant for all ex pats, and how can we describe those fleeing the Fourth Reich, ‘refugees’.
      England has lost the plot completely.
      What will come first? The Second English Civil War?
      Ireland re-uniting?
      Scotland Independent?

      These things will come to pass, in the next eighteen months or so.
      There are no other options.
      What a back three is the New World Order|Team.
      Johnson Trump and Putin.

      You can get a two bed house in Balloch for less than £60k: in London you couldn’t rent a space in a shop door for that.
      Londoners are eating each other now.
      Get out fast!

    • Andy Anderson says:

      All of us reading your comment agree with you. If your job and family ties allow come and live with us here and vote Yes to get your own parachute. Welcome.

  2. heathermclean19 says:

    Brilliant summation of the “talent pool” from which the next Tory Prime Minister is to be chosen! Laughing my head off here, but in reality, it’s tragic!
    Well done again Paul, for managing to make us laugh, even in the direst of circumstances.

  3. alanm says:

    “This beauty parade of misfits, careerists, opportunists, and people who want to run the country but don’t know how to use a comb…”

    Sounds like the sort of contest that’d be right up Ruth Davidson’s street. Wonder why she’s not in the race? Perhaps the Tories simply don’t have any safe Westminster seats and so can’t risk a by-election this summer.

  4. panda paws says:

    “It takes a very special kind of personality to grow up in Liverpool the same time I did and then join the Conservative party.”

    Is the word “disorder” not missing from that sentence of hers?

    • panda paws says:

      and her bidie in is Philip Davies. Some of his thoughts include

      “He has stated that the disabled should have the option of working for less than the minimum wage. Davies has said that white, male ministers risk being “hoofed out” of the government to make way for women or minority ethnic MPs.”

      He’s also famed for his filibustering. So birds of a feather do flock together.

  5. […] Wee Ginger Dug Vileness in waiting Yet another wannabe Tory leader has joined the Tory leadership contest. This time […]

  6. Astragael says:

    Rory Stewart’s father was a director of MI6, so ….

    • Bring your son to work day must have been fun.
      Great summary, Paul.
      If anything you are being a tad gentle in your summation.
      There has never been an assembly of would be Chancers in politics since 1933 Germany.
      Some of these candidates are borderline psychopaths. No, really.
      Spreadsheet Phil and Barclay will declare soon.

  7. Bob Lamont says:

    An excellent and incisive summary even if the gravitas of the original intent was frankly an impossible task without blowing a blood-vessel or considering self-harm.
    Coincidentally had a repeat listen of St Boris’s car-crash interview with Eddie Mair on R4 during his brief tenure as Foreign Secretary, how someone so appallingly bad could aspire to be PM and remain favourite among Tory members is quite astonishing. The reality that less than 130,000 people could dictate the leader and potential future of the UK is frightening.
    As Independent Woman commented earlier there is a huge dismissive disconnect which has been encouraged of Scottish affairs generally with all media, the established outlets only amplify the contrasts when the Scottish variant can be interpreted negatively, hence why so many English people have such a tilted view on Scotland, until they have that “Oh shit” moment of experiencing the reality. Scotland is justifiably proud of what it has achieved within it’s limited control, but don’t let the neighbours catch on, they may want similar change in direction.
    The propaganda machine is already in overdrive over the next PM, yet really it matters not a jot, just as May was a stooge or figurehead or sacrificial donkey, whoever ultimately picks up this poisoned chalice will play the same role, and the same fiasco will continue, but “democracy” will have been seen to have been served.
    I suspect this continued farce will not end well for the UK, the parachute of Independence is there but for that Geronimo moment…

  8. Absolute pond life, everyone of them.

  9. Steve ashton says:

    A reasonable summation. The best comment I’ve read elsewhere:- “I’d have thrown my own hat in the ring but I couldn’t fit enough semtex in it”

  10. Alba woman says:

    OT a little but pond life all the same..

    This morning 2 06 19 1030am .totally fed up of listening to the local Orange lodge band with bussed in pals marching past my house….this is a hate march of sectarian unionists allowed to parade said sectarianism just outside my window.

    Ruth Davidson gave these people electoral legitimacy along with the Labour Party. Just come you lot stand in my street and listen to the awful ‘music’ and the marchers crass sectarian beliefs.

  11. Terry callachan says:

    And still a majority of people living in Scotland want England to
    receive all taxes collected in Scotland
    give Scotland pocket money each year
    keep the rest of our money and decide how it should be spent
    make political decisions for us without our approval and sometimes without telling us

    Who are they , this majority ?
    Anonymous ?

  12. Rhisiart Gwilym says:

    Paul, I assume that everyone, without exception, has blind-spots/hot-buttons. But in you truly excellent blog, I never spotted anything that might be one of yours. Now, though – reading that ant-vaxxer snipe – I wonder if I might have found one. Anyone who wants to get their heads straight about modern vaccination, as its done today under the wholly-malevolent distortive influence of the Big Pharma criminals (sic, sic, sic!), should head to YouTube and work through some of Del Bigtree’s videos. He – along with Dr. Andrew Wakefield – does NOT say that vaccination is always wrong and bad; just that there’s something seriously wrong with the way we’re all being railroaded into using it now – absolutely not for our improved health, but solely for the sake of BPh profits.

    And they’re right. Please Paul, don’t traduce properly-sceptical parents when they seek to uncover the truth about modern vaccine protocols, and meanwhile refuse – quite rightly – to vaccinate their children against something as non-threatening as measles with something as seriously threatening as one of the modern – wholly for-profit – vaccine cocktails.

    And yes, despite discovering what might be a blind-spot even in WGD, next time you have a fundraiser, I’ll still bung you another tenner. 🙂 Keep up the good fight for Free Alba-Scotland! Power to your pipes!

  13. bringiton says:

    I used to think that the main reason for the extreme resistance to Scottish independence from the English ruling elite and their Scottish wannabes was the loss of control of Scottish resources.
    But now,I realise that it is really about the loss of self importance these creatures would suffer.
    England,having “lost” Scotland would be considered internationally as simply England and that is an unacceptable idea for most of these idiots.
    Who would want to be in charge of a country called England?

  14. Welsh Sion says:

    “Scotland (and Wales) have every right to hold an independence vote’ – Carwyn Jones AC/AM, former First Minister of Wales.

    Translation by me or a compatriot later … (preferred over Google Translate – but if you’re *that* impatient, go for it.)

    • Welsh Sion says:

      (In translation – WS)

      Scotland (and Wales) have every right to hold an independence vote

      Former First Minister Carwyn Jones has responded vigorously the Home Secretary Sajid Javid’s remark that he would not “allow” a vote on another on Scottish independence.

      Although he argues that he is personally in favour of stronger devolution rather than independence, he says that Sajid Javid has no right to obstruct a referendum.

      Sajid Javid is one of the 12 [now 13 – Translator] Tory MPs trying to be elected as Prime Minister to succeed Theresa May.

      “Does he have an idea of how arrogant he sounds?” he said in a tweet. “The people of Scotland, and the people of Wales in that respect, have every right to hold a referendum on independence if they support a party calling for that.”

      “Anyone has the right to campaign against independence, but not to prevent a vote.”

      His comments have been warmly welcomed by the SNP.

      “I welcome Carwyn Jones’s support for Scotland’s democratic right to hold a referendum on independence – and press the rest of the Labour Party to join us to stand against the Tories,” said Ian Blackford, leader of the SNP at Westminster.

      “It is not for the Tory Party to enforce the conditions on our future and to express arrogantly that they will not allow the people of Scotland to hold a referendum.”

      A Referendum (Scotland) Bill was introduced in the Scottish parliament this week.

  15. Bibbit says:

    Rory The Tory: Nice to see Methadone Mick has turned the corner.

  16. Iain says:

    Has Jo Swanson thrown her hat into the ring yet? She stands an excellent chance given her voting record in the Cameron government and her demand for a memorial to Margaret Thatcher.

  17. James Cheyne says:

    Gordon you would be more than made welcome in Scotland if your circumstances allowed it. I am English and love most of the people living here that have made me welcome over many years, I occasionally bump into a numpty but I have often bumped into a numpty in England & Wales to, the main thing to remember is to live here with a friendly attitude as you would anywhere else in the world, And never judge the people or country by the media, My children were born here and my grandchildren, I would be absolutely devastated if anyone told me I would have to move back to crazy England, my birth certificate may say am English but my heart says am Scottish. There are quite a lot of us here now in Scotland and most of us vote for an independent Scotland, wherever you are in the world we wish you and your family well in your future.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      Well said James, it is not England or English people which are the problem but the media and the Government which represent a very small fraction of England, yet has had and still has enormous influence on people’s politics and attitudes, yet rarely north of the border.
      Nigel Mirage, FrancoisM, Katie Hopkins, Jeremy Clarkson etc sell the snake oil and venom as have the Mail, Express, Sun, and lately Telegraph to a gullible public, that they are English is not the problem, but there is a moral compass with most Scots which immunises.
      I used to work up the Dee Valley with a colleague, who glibly pointed out houses as we drove past owned by (oil related at that time) English people, fences and walls where none had existed for centuries. The Client we met was an English lad with a plummy accent whose property had no fences and no walls. He explained he’d had the place 20 years and had come to accept local ways and traditions after decades of international travel with, as he described it, “complete relief”. He was “at home” nearing retirement, a more genuine down to earth lad I have rarely met in his position, but a more resolute and knowledgeable supporter of Independence was then a rarety.
      My colleague learned a valuable lesson about generalisations, and being relatively local, they went on to be great friends despite his Conservative “man and boy” entrenchment, probably still arguing the toss every Friday night…
      And long may that continue…

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