Boris: Why I am leaving the failing Johnson Family Project to explore global opportunities

When I was at school there was a boy called Rupert Vander-Likker who excelled at setting fire to things. ‘Likkers’ was always busy with the petrol can. First he burned down some local woodland, then he set fire to Matron’s car – (while she was in it) and finally, having achieved a little notoriety went on to his magnus opus, torching a very ugly council estate that blighted the edges of Windsor. I’m sorry to report that rather than congratulating him on his splendid efforts at regeneration, the local constabulary took rather a dim view of all this, as did the residents of Mandela drive (or whatever the ghastly place was called). Likkers was summoned before the Headmaster and given a stern warning that if he did it again he would have to pay for it all out of his own pocket money. No real harm was done of course as it was kept out of papers but Rupert, I am sorry to say, never set fire to anything again, causing all of us to lose interest in him.

Some years later news filtered through to The Beefsteak Club that Likkers had settled down with a lesbian who didn’t shave her armpits – and was making a living for himself saving starving little picaninnies in Africa. I have lived ever since by the motto: Noli esse vir Rupert. Never be like Rupert! Never settle for anything less than the magnificent chap you were at 18!

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It was not me Guv! It was that other chap.

I was reminded of Likkers earlier this year when my wife caught me with my lucky pants on my head romping with a pretty young girl, whose name escapes me – somewhere in the Cotswolds. I had really worked up quite a bit of steam and was about to yell my signature release howl of “tally ho for the Bullers!” when the door flung open to reveal the old battle axe standing there with tears streaming down her face – wholly ruining the magic of the moment. My first thought, as ever, was for myself and my second was for what this might mean for my chances of getting into Number 10.

Having extracted myself from my companion and pulled on my jogging plimsols, I found Mrs. Johnson out in the corridor making a terrible fuss about nothing.

“I can’t take this anymore!” The old harridan was wailing: “you’ve cheated on me again and again and I just can’t take it – all the lies – all the f*cking of everyone all the time!”

“Well now you know how the British people feel!” I quipped – ever with one eye on edition two of the ‘Wit and Wisdom of Boris Johnson.’ Indeed it was so good that I thought I ought to write it down and went off in search of a pencil and pad. Famously impatient, by the time I returned the old trouble and strife had gone and some weeks later the chaps at Mischon de Reya sent me a letter telling me she was filing for divorce – thus making an absolute pig’s trotter of my ambitions.

It was Tacitus who said: “In pessima republica plurimae leges”

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My lucky pants

It was Tacitus who said: “In pessima republica plurimae legis” and while the quote itself is wholly meaningless in this context, I have found that chucking Latin into my articles does make the ordinary fellow assume that I am an intellectual leviathan.

Now you might be thinking: “poor you being treated like that by the old girl just when you’ve got a proper crack at the leadership. What a shoddy woman.” Well, nothing actually could be further from the truth. You see for years I have had my doubts about the failing and unwieldy Johnson family project. It is a never ending money pit into which I have been obliged to throw a lot of cash for very little return indeed. While in its origins the marriage may have had noble intentions, frankly I signed up for a jolly good shagathon and someone to go and do the shopping. I had no idea at all that it would involve all of those babies and responsibilities and school fees and worst of all that the old todger would be put out for retirement in just a few short years.

Mrs. Johnson may now have joined the Singles Market, but I have my sights set on greater challenges. It is time to explore global opportunities and global partners. I am taking back control of my meat and two veg (wonky or not) and am going to make a jolly good fist of it. Divorce may be painful at first but I shall be able to put all the money I have wasted weekly on my marriage and invest it instead in things that really matter to the British people – my campaign to become Prime Minister.

There are some who question whether a man of dubious moral standards, who has cheated on both his wives, sired a child by another women, displayed not a jot of actual talent, offered to get a chum’s sworn enemies beaten up and been sacked for lies and incompetence should be Prime Minister. To those people I say “remember that time I was on a zipwire!” And to the little people I say: “Non est ad astra mollis e terris via.” They have no idea what it means of course, but it should placate the thick little yahoos long enough to get me what I want.

(as told to Otto English – satirical content)

Brexit is a civil war and a second referendum is the only viable path to a lasting peace

Boris Johnson gave his big speech yesterday and will no doubt give another one next week and the week after that and the week after that until Boris gets what Boris wants – namely the keys to Number 10. This one was supposedly all about the wonderful magnanimous Boris ‘reaching out’ (ghastly term) to the other side – i.e. Remoaners like myself – and selling Brexit as a fabtabulous opportunity. The speech was trailed in that well known Remoaner newspaper, The Sun and there was some stuff about Toblerones and carrots to make sure Boris trended on twitter – which of course Boris did.

Well it’s very good of Bojo to do that thing which I can’t bear to write again but he really wasn’t doing that at all so Boris can do one. Johnson is after an angle any angle in order to get that ghastly Mrs May out and his bonce in and his ‘conciliatory Brexit solver’ schtick is but the latest roll of that dice. If you believed he meant a single word of it then click here

For the rest of you – here’s a confession. I’m sick to bloody death of Brexit. I’m sick of having the same conversations on social media, in the pub, in my kitchen, at my workplace. I’m sick of Mogg, I’m sick of being called a Remoaner, I’m bored to the back teeth of getting bored to the back teeth by it. I’m tired of dancing around the subject with people I’ve just met or don’t really know or have known my entire life. I’m fed up with the friends and family who voted for it and am fed up with myself for feeling fed up with them. I’m sick of Article 50, the gurning Farage, Juncker, Barnier, Boris, the incompetent David Davis and even the BBC. There are a billion other ways I could better be spending my time than arguing with men called Doug on twitter. And yet – here I am – once again writing about bloody Brexit. In essence, if you haven’t quite got my point – I’m not over it – I’m sick and fucking tired of it – but I can’t move on. I suspect that most people in the country are heartily sick of it too. It dominates the news headlines and the national conversation. It’s there – everywhere you look – a political Tesco Metro.

The EU Referendum was essentially a war and principally – a Civil War. The language of the debate, from the off, was loaded with the leitmotifs and themes of armed conflict, WW2 ya da ya da ya da. Churchill has constantly been invoked and claimed by both sides throughout. The Brexiteers talk still of ‘liberation’ and ‘independence.’ Remainers are branded traitors, judges are branded traitors – indeed anyone who disagrees with anyone is branded a ‘traitor’ – I’ve done it myself. (See also Quisling and ‘resistance.’) Farage talked of donning khaki and picking up a gun if his vision of Brexit was not delivered. Whereas in 1940 the Battle for Britain raged in the skies above Southern England, today it rages on social media. There may be little spectacle, fewer deaths and a lot less engine oil in the mix, but all the other necessary elements of brutal engagement remain. Scores are settled. There’s a lot of crash and burn – and crucially – very few people are actually involved.

 

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The Imagery of war

The tabloids and our political masters would have us believe that there are two clear lines between the warring factions in this battle but as in all wars that simply isn’t the case. Most people, whatever they voted, are simply by-standers and are now looking on in horror – or for the sake of their sanity have switched off completely. Talk of a “second referendum” sends a chill through the hearts of many – if not all of us. Most Britons want to ‘just get on with it’ and frankly – who can blame them?

The problem is – and forgive me for my mixed wartime metaphors here – that the people actually doing the fighting are more deeply entrenched and committed to the struggle than ever. The hard-line Brexiteers and the hard-line Remoaners have both dug in – and things are getting nastier. There’s a growing sense that both sides want to win for winnings sake and in the process no longer seem to give a fuck about the countryside around us being blown to (metaphorical) smithereens. This is no longer about the ins and outs of EU membership – it’s about attainment of a final victory. Suggesting that we just stop it and all ‘reach out’ to each other is cloud cuckoo fairyland bollocks. The equivalent of marching out in to the middle of No Man’s Land in 1916 and shouting ‘why can’t we all be friends’ over the barrage of guns.

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Brexit is a Civil War – a fight for the soul of Britain

So what to do?

What do you want? I can tell you what I want. I want my kids to be happy and safe and get a bit of education and a job they like and grow up in a prosperous, peaceful, progressive corner of the world. I want this little spit of land on which I have lived all my life to burgeon and be respected and liked. I want to be proud to be British not the butt of some international joke. For any likelihood of that happening this war must end and a peace must be signed. There needs to be an ‘end-game’ and frankly the only chance of that coming is in the shape and form of a second referendum. Just leaving without it won’t work – because ‘the Resistance’ will not go quietly off home and hang up their remoaning socks. A line has to be drawn in the sand.

The situation in 2018 is very different indeed to that of 2016. Most British people are now aware of the intricacies of our relationship with the EU, most people are now better informed and on that basis a second referendum would be fairer than the first.

“But what if we lost?” I’m often asked by people on my side. Well – easy. This time Remainers would be obliged for the sake of the whole country to respect the result and shut up (for a bit). There is no guarantee at all that Remain would win – but a second vote on the deal would at least put this tiresome and protracted engagement to rest.

christmas truce

The Boris Bridge was a dead cat – and everybody fell for it

France’s charismatic leader Emmanuel Macron arrived in London last week for talks with the UK government about all things Brexit. A new migrant treaty was signed, old bonds were reaffirmed, selfies were taken and striking a gloomier note, the French President stressed that if the UK financial services industry wanted to preserve access to the EU single market post-Brexit it was welcome to do so – provided it obeyed the bloc’s rules – adding, a little sarcastically “Be my guest.”

You may have missed it. Indeed it is quite likely that you missed everything Monsieur Macron said during his visit, because on the very same day and at the same summit, the UK Foreign Secretary – Boris Johnson proposed the construction of a 22 mile long bridge, linking France and Britain.

Boris Johnson has no authority to green light such a project nor – as Foreign Secretary – is it within his remit. That didn’t stop the press and indeed all of us – embarking on an epic frenzy of what-ifery. Within minutes #BorisBridge was trending on twitter and hacks were taking to their computers, while pundits and architects took calls from radio stations and news producers pushed the story to the top of their programmes. It led the hour on BBC and Sky news for much of the rest of the day.

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The Millau Viaduct in France – a classic and beautiful example of Anglo-British engineering

So unwelcome was this unilateral declaration of architectural intent, that Downing Street at first refused even to comment on the idea – but finally gave in and a weary press secretary revealed there were ‘no plans’ for such a project. Too late – the Boris Bridge was still trending on Saturday morning – you no doubt have an opinion on it, as does your mother, your Uncle Jeffy, your cousin Susan and her dog.

So why did Johnson do this?

There are two possible explanations. Firstly, Johnson’s singular goal is to be Prime Minister. It’s been his ambition for decades. He’s also a politician who lacks imagination in the way that Death Valley lacks moisture. Boris’s Mayoralty was built on a series of faintly hair-brained, very costly but essentially insipid and unfeasible ‘grand projects.’ An ersatz and impractical Routemaster, a cable car that literally went from nowhere to nowhere and the ridiculous Thames estuary airport which would have involved building runways in an area teaming with large wildfowl. A big project could be PM in waiting Boris’s eye catching pitch for the top job

I don’t think that’s what’s at play here.

In fact the Boris Bridge is a classic example of a ‘dead cat strategy,’ a tactic whereby a lurid, crazy or sensationalist idea is thrown into political discourse in order to divert attention away from a more damaging topic. In essence, chuck a dead moggy on the dining room table and everyone is too busy talking about the deceased cat to bother about anything else.

The strategy was deployed very effectively during the EU Referendum – headlines were grabbed and Leave steered the agenda away from the actual subject of our relationship with the EU and onto slogans written on red buses, fishing flotillas sailing down the Thames and the billions of Turkish people who would apparently be pouring into the UK the week after the referendum.

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Boris Johnson – the British Trump

In the case of the Boris Bridge – all attention was diverted away from Macron and his words of warning and onto the conceited and single-minded Johnson. It worked beautifully, not least because the media were entirely complicit. There were no plans for a bridge over the Channel. There is unlikely ever to be a bridge over the Channel. But everyone was talking about the bridge over the Channel. Not a single journalist bothered to stop and think and query the motives behind it – and we all lapped it up.

Does it matter? Yes – it matters absolutely, because there’s what the politicians say and what the politicians are reported to have said and then there’s the real motivation behind it – which is unfortunately left, more and more, both unquestioned and unchallenged. Boris Johnson knows that and he plays it artfully in much the same way that Nigel Farage does. Boris succeeds because the media is, for the most part, so infatuated with him that they are happy to facilitate the ride he is taking you for.

That should make you angry and if it does not then think about it this way – Boris Johnson thinks you are stupid Britain, he holds you in contempt and he has calculated that his tousled mop and winning smile will forgive all ills – don’t be his useful idiots.

The Book of Brexit – the humiliation of St Theresa

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And at that time there was great uncertainty across the land – and there was talk of a new teacher who would deliver the children from the yoke. And a man, whose name was Nigel, came out of the wilderness and began to preach and gathered crowds and made a lot of empty promises while talking in riddles that did not make sense.

He was not that Light but was sent to bear witness to that Light. And people said: “What is this light you speak of?” And he said: “Lo – it is the Kingdom of Brexit and it is more a shade of dark blue – though there are those who argue that it is black.”

And after a while later he said: “I shall leave you now and go to see if I might get a job with the Fox network – but there standeth among you a woman, not a leadsom, who will deliver it instead and grant you the Kingdom while I shout abuse from the other side of the lake.”

And he was taken away, but his spirit remained, on LBC and occasionally BBC question time.

And the people were afraid and wondered at what they had done and then – as foretold by Nigel a woman appeared – Theresa, the daughter of Hubert and she began to preach among the people of Albion in a dry and flat voice.

And once when they were all gathered at their devices, she told her disciples “Brexit means Brexit” and the crowd asked of her “but what does that mean?” And she repeated again “Brexit means Brexit” but her followers remained none the wiser and so asked a third time: “But seriously what does it mean?” And she remained silent and did underwhelm them.

And Theresa did endeavour to deliver this thing which nobody really understood, least of all herself and the Faragsees began to murmur among themselves that this “woman will not deliver.”

Now among the disciples closest to her was a man, Boris the Shifty and he doubted her words and looked down on her as ‘not really being our sort of chap’ while publicly saying he did not and saw an opportunity to filleth the inches of his column and the wages of his sin and the night before the party conference she turned to him and said:

“Before this week is over you will have betrayed me 30 times.”

And he did look at her with pity in his eyes and say: “You clearly underestimate my aptitude for disloyalty.”

And he did go to the Faragees and plot but really it was not necessary for her fate had been written from the beginning by her startling ineptitude.

The day of her humiliation dawned with much expectation – and she was taken to a place they called The Manchester Central Conference centre – which means the place of the skull – and she was taunted and mocked by a man with a P45 and as the guards led him away she spluttered and said:

“Blessed are the childless women….” Before starting to cough really badly and again she started saying something about “the British Dream….” and how “places for 3 and 4 year olds have doubled under this government.” But her voice ran dry and she cried out for water which was given and the social media did mock her and she did cry out a fourth time in desperation: “in the 1970s it was scientists in Oxford who invented lithium batteries that make mobile telephones work.”

And the crowd did shake their heads.

And wonder.

And when her humiliation was finished, they cut her down from the podium and took her away and at that moment the great opinion in the Temple split in two and the Earth opened and the people were even more afraid and wished that none of this crap had happened in the first place.

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The Defenestrator – David Davis J’Accuse

David Davis is brought before our frankly terrifying judge

David Davis, you come before us charged with incompetence, cowardice and dereliction of duty.

Before I pass judgement let me review the facts of this case.

Stand up straight man and wipe that ridiculous leer off your face.

We are told today that you wish to quit as Brexit Secretary in 2019, long before anything is finalised, leaving Doris Johnson to steer the nation on to the iceberg instead. We are told that you see the role of Brexit Secretary as your last big job – much as an ill-mannered ruffian might refer a recent turd that refuses to flush. You’ve certainly helped create an awful mess and a terrible stink and I suspect all the water on Earth won’t remedy that nor swill it away.

There is nothing to smirk about at all. Straighten your tie.

Never shy of mentioning the fact that you were “in the SAS” I see that that you were never actually a full time soldier. You joined the Territorial Army in order to pay your way through university, much as you were later to become Brexit Secretary in order to pay your way through lunch.

From university you went to Tate and Lyle – where you worked for 17 years and developed a habit for sugar (6 spoonfuls a cup) while selling obesity and rotten teeth to the nation. While there you lobbied the firm to bung cash Neil Hamilton’s way – supporting him in his libel case against the BBC.

Tate and Lyle incidentally is one of the very few big businesses to be benefitting from Brexit, but we are all very satisfied that your former role there has nothing to do with your later deeply held ideological opposition to the European Union. Very satisfied indeed.

And then in 1988 you began your itinerant “political journey” in much the same way that a man leaving a nightclub at 3 a.m. might begin his.

No you might not break for lunch.

As a whip in John Major’s government in 1992 you became known as an enforcer, facing down 70 potentially rebellious MPs to push through THE MAASTRICHT TREATY which cemented the foundations of the EU and our place within it. Yes. The Maastricht Treaty that created the European Union. That thing. Without your “soft touch” in the corridors of Westminster the UK might never have ratified the treaty.

Happily for you, the public seemingly have the collective memory of a decapitated goldfish that has been put through a blender. You have flourished in an environment where soundbites and stupidity rather than ‘integrity’ or ‘ability’ create political careers. As with all the other Brexiteers you have been little more than a professional heckler for most of your political life. A Shadow Secretary of State. A Shadow Home Secretary. A Shadow of a Statesman.

When you were finally offered the chance to enter the government and actually ‘do things’ by David Cameron, you turned him down – preferring instead to shout jeers from the touchline and discover your inner populist right wing Farage. Now – having won your Brexit victory – you are left standing with it – like a pissed monkey with a primed torpedo – unsure of what to do next.

You, Davis, have led this country into this mess. You, Davis, have been charged with leading us through the most treacherous and potentially chaotic period in our post-war history and yet in all those decades of sneering you appear never to have bothered to have read up on the EU or our relationship with it.

Over the last few years you have claimed that the EU Commission passes laws. It doesn’t.

You have claimed that the UK can broker individual deals with the EU. It can’t.

You have said that post Brexit – the UK will be able to secure free trade deals “ten times the size of the EU” – or in real terms ‘nearly twice the size of the actual global economy’ – or in plain English “bollocks.”

Not understanding the labyrinthine scale of the EU and our relationship with it may be understandable (if you weren’t the Brexit Secretary). Not understanding basic mathematics is not.

As this nightmare has coasted from one catastrophe to another you have made your country look ridiculous. You are laughed at on the continent – ridiculed as unprepared, ill-informed and out of your depth. The only foreign words you seem to understand are ‘non’ and ‘dejeuner’. Rather than bothering with your brief, you have another pint.

If you adjudged that Brexit would be a success you would want to remain and take the glory and yet as the slow curse of this idiocy kicks in you have clearly had a moment of clarity. Like all politicans you have perhaps wondered how history might judge you and having realised that it ‘doesn’t look good’ done what no real SAS man would – run away.

Your political legacy has demonstrated only that a man gifted with little apparent talent, skill, intelligence, wit, charm or ability can rise to the very top of power and British politics. I’m not sure if that is our shame or yours.

Either way – TAKE HIM AWAY GIRLS.

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