How is it, exactly, that we’re not on the streets? With the foulest, most rancidly prejudiced and corrupt government of my lifetime traducing the work of parliament, hour by hour? How? When the pitifully transparent Big Dog himself is cocking his leg over everything that feels right? How can this liar, this wilfully amoral clown be getting away with it?
The answers are several; some obvious, some not. Firstly of course the British Media is largely either brazenly prostituting itself beneath the Evil Barons – let’s specify; the filthy Mail/Express/Sun and their joined-up-writing equivalents The Telegraph and Times – or *mysteriously* failing to pursue stories that might lead somewhere tetchy for Johnson/Sunak/Rees-Mogg/Patel, etc. In short our ‘free press’ is either bent to the will of near-fascists, or so cosied-up to the private school/’elite’ families/personal benefit system that genuinely investigative journalism is smothered in an anaesthetic fog.
We expect the BBC and The Met to be more or less pliant to the will of the Establishment: we’ve got that. The Beeb is stacked full of decent people – lefties, even – but the Direction of Travel is being carefully steered by Daily Mail stooges. So Kuenssberg* hasn’t been a-tweeting about Partygate: extraordinarily, she didn’t have any information on any of those events, despite having unprecedented access to the drinking, dancing scumbags. And similarly, the obviously corrupt ‘tendering process’ for covid-related contracts has remained impenetrably obscure, to protect Tory families and funders.
(*Not just her, naturally. Plenty newspaper journo’s have strangely gone quiet on this one – often because their seniors were at the Downing St parties. One of the great failures to report).
I’m not sure who first used the phrase ‘the very worst of us’ to describe the execrable scheisters at the helm. But how else might we capture that sense of real, deep contempt for Johnson and Cummings and Patel and Mogg? They are surely simply not of us and yet we’ve let them besmirch us. Johnson for his utter separation from decency, truth, morality of any perceptible kind; Cummings for his evil narcissism and calculated debasement; Patel for her brazen prejudice and that faux-bullish small-person’s arrogance (or worse). Mogg is just an unspeakable caricature of tory privilege and estrangement from the real world: monied; less clever than he thinks; as stupidly unaware as the other freaks. They are The Very Worst Of Us.
As I write it seems our friends at The Met have exonerated Johnson for Partygate. Because he wasn’t in any sense responsible. And neither was poor old Carrie. They were merely hosts and Star Attractions in said events. They were, unlike their fawning underlings – lately found guilty – ‘innocently’ wee-weeing on the graves of thousands of plebs.
Out There, (here), in the meanwhile, in the Inconsequential Wastes, daft buggers like you and me were blowing masked farewell kisses down phones before bawling into our hands, because that seemed a sacrifice we all had to make. In these uniquely aching moments, in Downing Street and within the sphere of influence of the Secret Tory Machine, it was ‘Dancing Queen’ time.
Even the most cursory look at our bouffant, bumbling, unconscionable Prime fucking Minister will confirm that Johnson has never made a sacrifice in his life. Never needed to. Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson – like his appalling father before him – has never needed to reflect, only to drive inexorably forward, towards His Manifest Destiny. Like Rees-Mogg, assumptions towards brilliance and a kind of inevitable ‘greatness’ cossetted his ether – his aura. Boris was chosen, by his class, his schools, his clubs, his exceptional milieu, to plough on, towards oven-ready genius and fame. The irresistible power of a zillion years of feudal domination (and peasant capitulation?) was his. No wonder we chose him.
It remains – incredibly – possible that Johnston may survive the murderous incompetence, the missed COBRA meetings, the outrage that was the Covid contract-fest and now the relentless, mind-bending Partygate lies. The volumes of stupidity and naivety in the general population have carried him on, rubber-stamping Cummings’s filthy xenophobic Brexit, dumbly dancing with that poisonous conflation of Brussels with immigrants. Where we are is a triumph of sorts for Daily Mail-levels of bigotry and for the Great Families who continue to piss on our strawberries.
Never has the UK been so low, so barren, so shameful.