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May on the way??

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Amazon were seen delivering a job lot of stethoscopes this afternoon,to the neighbour’s.

 

The nosy neighbours seemed to have forced the noisy residents out of their 'working class' area.

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Interesting view from one of Johnson's previous bosses.

 

I was Boris Johnson’s boss: he is utterly unfit to be prime minister

Max Hastings

 

Six years ago, the Cambridge historian Christopher Clark published a study of the outbreak of the first world war, titled The Sleepwalkers. Though Clark is a fine scholar, I was unconvinced by his title, which suggested that the great powers stumbled mindlessly to disaster. On the contrary, the maddest aspect of 1914 was that each belligerent government convinced itself that it was acting rationally.

 

It would be fanciful to liken the ascent of Boris Johnson to the outbreak of global war, but similar forces are in play. There is room for debate about whether he is a scoundrel or mere rogue, but not much about his moral bankruptcy, rooted in a contempt for truth. Nonetheless, even before the Conservative national membership cheers him in as our prime minister – denied the option of Nigel Farage, whom some polls suggest they would prefer – Tory MPs have thronged to do just that.

 

I have known Johnson since the 1980s, when I edited the Daily Telegraph and he was our flamboyant Brussels correspondent. I have argued for a decade that, while he is a brilliant entertainer who made a popular maître d’ for London as its mayor, he is unfit for national office, because it seems he cares for no interest save his own fame and gratification.

 

Tory MPs have launched this country upon an experiment in celebrity government, matching that taking place in Ukraine and the US, and it is unlikely to be derailed by the latest headlines. The Washington columnist George Will observes that Donald Trump does what his political base wants “by breaking all the china”. We can’t predict what a Johnson government will do, because its prospective leader has not got around to thinking about this. But his premiership will almost certainly reveal a contempt for rules, precedent, order and stability.

 

A few admirers assert that, in office, Johnson will reveal an accession of wisdom and responsibility that have hitherto eluded him, not least as foreign secretary. This seems unlikely, as the weekend’s stories emphasised. Dignity still matters in public office, and Johnson will never have it. Yet his graver vice is cowardice, reflected in a willingness to tell any audience, whatever he thinks most likely to please, heedless of the inevitability of its contradiction an hour later.

 

Like many showy personalities, he is of weak character. I recently suggested to a radio audience that he supposes himself to be Winston Churchill, while in reality being closer to Alan Partridge. Churchill, for all his wit, was a profoundly serious human being. Far from perceiving anything glorious about standing alone in 1940, he knew that all difficult issues must be addressed with allies and partners.

 

Churchill’s self-obsession was tempered by a huge compassion for humanity, or at least white humanity, which Johnson confines to himself. He has long been considered a bully, prone to making cheap threats. My old friend Christopher Bland, when chairman of the BBC, once described to me how he received an angry phone call from Johnson, denouncing the corporation’s “gross intrusion upon my personal life” for its coverage of one of his love affairs.

 

“We know plenty about your personal life that you would not like to read in the Spectator,” the then editor of the magazine told the BBC’s chairman, while demanding he order the broadcaster to lay off his own dalliances.

 

Bland told me he replied: “Boris, think about what you have just said. There is a word for it, and it is not a pretty one.”

 

He said Johnson blustered into retreat, but in my own files I have handwritten notes from our possible next prime minister, threatening dire consequences in print if I continued to criticise him.

 

Johnson would not recognise truth, whether about his private or political life, if confronted by it in an identity parade. In a commonplace book the other day, I came across an observation made in 1750 by a contemporary savant, Bishop Berkeley: “It is impossible that a man who is false to his friends and neighbours should be true to the public.” Almost the only people who think Johnson a nice guy are those who do not know him.

 

There is, of course, a symmetry between himself and Jeremy Corbyn. Corbyn is far more honest, but harbours his own extravagant delusions. He may yet prove to be the only possible Labour leader whom Johnson can defeat in a general election. If the opposition was led by anybody else, the Tories would be deservedly doomed, because we would all vote for it. As it is, the Johnson premiership could survive for three or four years, shambling from one embarrassment and debacle to another, of which Brexit may prove the least.

 

For many of us, his elevation will signal Britain’s abandonment of any claim to be a serious country. It can be claimed that few people realised what a poor prime minister Theresa May would prove until they saw her in Downing Street. With Boris, however, what you see now is almost assuredly what we shall get from him as ruler of Britain.

 

We can scarcely strip the emperor’s clothes from a man who has built a career, or at least a lurid love life, out of strutting without them. The weekend stories of his domestic affairs are only an aperitif for his future as Britain’s leader. I have a hunch that Johnson will come to regret securing the prize for which he has struggled so long, because the experience of the premiership will lay bare his absolute unfitness for it.

 

If the Johnson family had stuck to showbusiness like the Osmonds, Marx Brothers or von Trapp family, the world would be a better place. Yet the Tories, in their terror, have elevated a cavorting charlatan to the steps of Downing Street, and they should expect to pay a full forfeit when voters get the message. If the price of Johnson proves to be Corbyn, blame will rest with the Conservative party, which is about to foist a tasteless joke upon the British people – who will not find it funny for long.

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Thing is, none of that matters. It's all down to the 160,000 tory members and if Johnson's reception at the hustings on Saturday was anything to go by, he'll walk it. I wonder what he'd have to do to lose the faith of those weirdos in the conservative party.

 

Also....

 

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Whew. Max Hastings is hardly a Corbynista is he? Pretty excoriating.

 

This should be posted to every Tory Party member with their ballot paper. All they have against his opponent is James Naughtie calling him 'Jeremy ****' (rhymes with Hunt) on national radio.

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At the end of the day it's either or.

We might not like it but that's the reality.

It would be funny if it wasn't a serious issue.

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Just wondering ? Do you think the next Labour government will scrap any arms deal with the Saudis ? Always been a bit of a hot potato considering the number of jobs that rely on the contract.

 

Is it in their manifesto to scrap arms deals?

Is it in their manifesto to protect workers jobs and their rights?

Big decisions to make for the fence sitters.

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LBC interview with Johnson this morning.

 

NICK FERRARI: [if you're concerned for your privacy,] why the picture today?

 

BORIS JOHNSON: Newspapers will print whatever they're going to print

 

NF: Where did it come from?

 

BJ: What I want to do is talk -

 

NF: Boris Johnson, where did the picture come from?

 

BJ: The longer we spend on issues -

 

NF: We'll come to that, don't worry. We've got 20 minutes to do this. Where did the picture come from?

 

BJ: The longer we spend on things extraneous -

 

NF: Did you know of its publication?

 

BJ: The longer we spend on things extraneous to what I want to do -

 

NF: Is it actually you, or is it Ed Sheeran?

 

BJ: [Laughs] The bigger the waste of time -

 

NF: Where has the picture come from?

 

BJ: Look, I'm not going to ask the -

 

NF: Are you happy with it on the majority of the front pages?

 

BJ: Actually as I've been saying... I haven't seen the majority of the front pages

 

NF: Well I'm showing it to you now. Are you happy with that?

 

BJ: I think the longer we spend - I can't determine what the newspapers decide to -

 

NF: But you knew the picture was being put out there?

 

BJ: I can't determine what the newspapers -

 

NF: Did you know the picture was being put out there, Mr Johnson?

 

BJ: There are all sorts of pictures of me out on the internet, which, er, pop up from time to time -

 

NF: Did you know this picture was being put out?

 

BJ: I am aware of alls sorts of pictures of me out on the internet. And it is entirely up to newspapers to decide what they want to print. But the longer we spend on this -

 

NF: Did you know this picture was out there?

 

BJ: Of course I knew that there was a picture like that in existence, whether it was the decision of the, er -

 

NF: When was it taken?

 

BJ: I don't want to go into...

 

NF: So that's a state secret, when the picture was taken? When was it taken?

 

BJ: It's not a state secret. It just happens to be something I don't want to get into.

 

NF: You won't even tell me when the picture was taken?

 

BJ: No! Why should I?

 

NF: Because it's not recent, is it? Your hair in this photograph is not your hair currently, is it?

 

BJ: If I may say so this conversation is now descending into farce...

 

NF: This is quite an old picture isn't it?

 

BJ: I'm not going to comment on -

 

NF: It's before the haircut you had from the Turkish chap

 

BJ: No you're wrong about that, I no longer have my hair cut by the Turkish chap, I have my hair cut by a very nice person called Kelly or possibly Tamara

 

NF: When did you last have your hair cut?

 

BJ: You'd have to ask Kelly or Tamara, it was quite recently actually. Anyway... this is beyond satire... I am not going to comment on the antiquity of provenance of some photo that the newspapers decide to put on their front pages. This is about a far more important agenda.

 

Again, such a shame, but none of this will matter one iota, not a jot, as on current form, the tory membership (and the MPs who voted for him) don't give two flicks about things like integrity.

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Given the court ruling last week it should be out of their hands.

 

When did Boris Johnson last have a haircut? Some interesting theories going round that he's passed off an old photo of him and Carrie as being from the weekend.

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He also said he wouldn't appear in any debates as he didn't want to speak ill of other tories. So, he's fine with calling Muslim women "letterboxes", black people "picaninnies", Scottish people "a verminous race", and gay people "bumboys" but wouldn't dare have a discussion with his Eton buddies in case he "spoke ill" of them?

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This is why his advisers are trying to hide Boris away from scrutiny as the Leadership election is his to lose. Great at flag waving for the UK but not the guy you want sitting around a table making important decisions and his people know that.

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LBC interview with Johnson this morning.

 

 

 

Again, such a shame, but none of this will matter one iota, not a jot, as on current form, the tory membership (and the MPs who voted for him) don't give two flicks about things like integrity.

 

Dont worry,smears against Trump didnt work either.

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I don't give a rats ass about Boris, his private life or his haircut.

If Boris doesn't get in the other ass will..... what changes?..... bugger all.

I think it will only be a temporary appointment anyway.

Either one will screw brexit and get shafted or call an election and find out how big the split is in the country.

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They did - he lost the popular vote.

 

The Americans had a similar problem....... vote for a clown or vote for a crook.

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The Americans had a similar problem....... vote for a clown or vote for a crook.

 

Is Hunt a crook??

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I don't give a rats ass about Boris, his private life or his haircut.

If Boris doesn't get in the other ass will..... what changes?..... bugger all.

I think it will only be a temporary appointment anyway.

Either one will screw brexit and get shafted or call an election and find out how big the split is in the country.

 

May does not have to resign, the vote is only for the leadership. If she considers that Boris could not command the confidence of the house she is within her rights to carry on, she could then seek a vote of confidence for herself.

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That clip of Johnson talking about painting models of buses is extraordinarily painful. He looks ill, both mentally and physically.

 

Along with his domestic the other night, he's not in a good place at all is he?

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