27 June 2019
Diary of a Corbynista
by Don Urquhart
Later today we will know the names of the two Conservative MP’s who will be contesting the leadership. For the next few weeks there will be hustings with party members for the two lovelies to display their charms. But first there will be a private hustings with the people who will really be running the country, the Conservative Party donors, who have to be persuaded to invest in the Tory coffers rather than those of Farage.
The Chancellor’s annual Mansion House speech is a natural target for protesters of all kinds. After all it is one of those events illustrating the symbiosis between high finance and government. What’s not to hate? So I was quite impressed to see the ladies in red imposing their opinions on the fat cats.
But the news was made by the clash of 1 protester and Foreign Office Minister Mark Field. He has taken a bath in the media and many have called for bad things to happen to him, his resignation being the mildest.
Generally speaking I am in favour of Tories being embarrassed and punished in terrible ways, but what I saw was a protester moving towards the top table and a man showing the initiative to intercept her and steer her towards the exit.
How was Mark Field to know that she had no malicious intent? Indeed what was her intent? After all Jo Brand has suggested throwing acid at people, however ironically she presented it. It disturbs me that some on my side of politics are jumping on this opportunistically, including those who are quick to condemn the abuse and threats they themselves are subject to.
You can question the aggressive style of Mark Field’s action, but he hurt nobody and he could have been putting himself in harm’s way to save lives.
In every other aspect he is Just Another Tory and should be propelled into the dustbin of history along with Michael Gove, who put this idea in my head.
The hard right cabal running the English Nationalist Party (still calling itself the Conservative Party) have often repeated the lie that Parliament has voted in favour of no deal. They are referring to the Labour motion on June 12th which would have paved the way for parliament to seize control of the Commons timetable on 25 June. It was defeated. But this is very different from Parliament sanctioning no deal and the day will come when this question will be posed decisively in order to really stop no deal. Let’s hope the majority of MPs will support it.
In the interests of balance Andrew Marr interviewed anti-Corbyn Labour Party members from both Remain (David Miliband) and Leave (Caroline Flint) wings. Ms Flint’s contribution was the more telling. She and 25 other Labour MP’s have written to Corbyn demanding that the Party should not support a second referendum. They would, she said, vote for no deal if that was the only way out of the EU on October 31st.
Tory leadership candidate Jeremy Hunt insists on telling us what a great Health Minister he was. As an antidote take a look at this Newsnight programme where Lord Winston and A&E doctor Rachel Clarke lambast him as dishonest, for running down the NHS and for alienating doctors who left the profession in droves on his watch.
We can look forward to a more efficient approach to democracy. Our elections will be managed from the White House. Mike Pompeo has reassured us that the US will intervene to keep Corbyn out of No. 10. Donald Trump has told us how keen he is on Mr Johnson as our next Prime Minister and Mr Hunt is bidding to have the orange one smile upon him by promising to increase defence spending to the tune of £15 billion. Here’s how it is reported by the BBC:
“My plan for defence will give our brave troops the backing they need and show the world that when it comes to the new threats to Western values, Britain is back and Britain’s voice will be strong,” he added.
Mr Hunt’s move comes after repeated complaints from US President Donald Trump over the defence spending of NATO allies.
It’s also a shot in the arm for companies like Span Surgical, specialists in Body Bags.
The media are fixated by a contest between two of England’s most unappetising individuals. On Newsnight last night this turned into an epic gladiatorial contest between Johnson fan Andrew Mitchell MP and savage attack beast Emma Barnett. There were many questions she could have posed but she chose to highlight the idyllic bucolic photo of Boris and Carrie and to ask when it was taken just as Nick Ferrari had done 26 times on LBC earlier in the day. Mitchell dismissed her interest as a gutter press initiative, thus giving rise to a great moment in television when Ms Barnett instructed him: Don’t paint me into the gutter!
Great drama, but pretty damned irrelevant to the 1.5 million destitute people who must be wondering when a government will come along that gives a flying firkin about them. I would love to see Emma Barnett use her rapacious talents in defence of these people rather than on the PR froth the politicians would rather have us all get upset about.
Here’s a BBC item which addresses the issue: