Boriswatch (4)

Today I celebrate my first anniversary of Boris watching.

Given the much lauded Brexit deal that was announced only a few days back, and is still being checked out by the experts, methinks a new episode is in order. But it is only number four compared to the person is he is often likened to, Trump, where I have done fourteen episodes in that time, who I find more interesting, if only because there really are fireworks when he is even only remotely involved (compare with Boris who I see as being surrounded by a bunch of annoying school children) and I can empathise better with Trump.

If good ‘ol Nigel (Farage) is to be believed, Boris has delivered on Brexit and needs to be lauded because he has given what many euroskeptics consider a decentish deal, against great odds, both within the British establishment and among EU partners keen to punish us. While no doubt pundits will continue to debate the merits of the various compromises that had to be made and where we go next, for many Brexiteers the agony of the past five years is now over but the question remains concerning whether Boris, now we have our sovereignty back, can now lead us into a new Promised land?

One year ago, I wanted to give Boris the benefit of the doubt and, while I know many will disagree, comparing with when Trump was in the same position some four years ago, Trump has overall impressed me in a way Boris has not. Like Trump, he has narcissist tendencies and lies as a matter of course. He also is prepared to throw under the bus those that get in the way such as the Northern Irish and because it actually shares a border with an EU member – the Southern Irish. I don’t see the same redeeming features I see in Trump, such as a passionate love for his country and willingness to stand up against the British equivalent of the Washington swamp and the various elites who want to screw us. As for trusting him, I cannot say I do and if I were a Tory MP asked to sign up to a 1000 page document full of fudges and legalese, with only a few days to read etc., I might feel tempted to to tell Boris where to go. Yet, other than hopes of a new political party, such as what still could arise out of the short lived Brexit Party, Conservatives with Boris at the helm may still be better that any other Conservative front runner leading the Party or any of the other parties, whoever leads them.

Besides Brexit and COVID-19, I can’t think of anything significant or memorable or particularly praise worthy Boris has done in the past year. In fairness, COVID-19 is a difficult one to know what to do for the best and what other parties propose is no better than what Boris has done. My gripe is I don’t rate his advisors any more than I did before the Chinese Communist Party has got rumbled those who wanted to sub-contract upgrading our telecommunications infra-structure to Huawei, or Boris judgment. Frankly, I found him congratulating Biden in the recent US Presidential election, before he won, disappointing. While I get it that people are divided between harsher and softer responses to the Coronavirus “pandemic”, I get the impression Boris doesn’t know what he is doing, is constantly changing his mind and is full of political BS.

I am afraid my view of Boris is that he is an opportunist with (Brexit aside) questionable judgment, who prefers to put his own political ambition ahead of doing what is best for the country. While I am a Trump fan because I saw what he was up against and what he achieved despite many obstacles, I am still not a fan of Boris, whose only significant achievement I can name is Brexit. Even so, he remains my Prime Minister, duly elected, an object for my prayers.

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One thought on “Boriswatch (4)

  1. A friend of mine upon reading the above took me to task about being over generous toward Boris. With his permission, I reproduce here what he had to say …

    I agree with the basic thrust of what you write, but am considerably less sanguine than you about the trade deal. A year ago Johnson lied to Northern Island then stabbed it in the back by signing a lightly modified version of May’s WA which he had previously excoriated. He could instead have chosen to tear it up – or indeed just walk away without an agreement.

    Similarly, Johnson’s repeated lies about deadlines over the last year have confirmed to all (including the EU) that he would ultimately sign what the EU put in front of him. In the process he has unnecessarily given up UK maritime rights granted by international law and stabbed the fishing industry in the back – echoing both last year’s behaviour and the UK government’s behaviour 40 years ago. Apparently we are to celebrate the UK government showing much more “decency” towards the French and Dutch fishermen than it was ever prepared to show towards our own.

    Dumping 1000+ pages of dense, turgid legalese on Parliament and demanding that it ratify the document at such short notice is nothing short of disgraceful. It is noticeable that all the usual Tory cheerleaders have emerged to demand we accept without question that it is a good deal and “move along, nothing to see here”. In contrast, MEPs and other interested EU parties will have several weeks, at least, to ratify it. There will be many booby-traps buried deep within the prose – a few are already starting to emerge. Even those which are not legal obligations but require consultation will provide the EU with an unwarranted opportunity to meddle and slow things down, while Europhile civil servants dissuade ministers that changes which they would like to make are not worth the hassle.

    Between these two agreements and other commitments such as those made in the areas of justice, security and defence, it is quite clear that we will not in practice be allowed to leave the orbit of the EU – and, in fact, it will be quite a low orbit. Part of the problem seems to be that at the heart of the UK government machine lies a fundamental “blocist” belief – i.e. that the UK needs to be part of something politically bigger to survive. That belief may or may not be sincere, may nor may not be correct, but it is what it is and the wishes of so-called “low-information voters” are never going to be allowed to stand in the way of those who think that they know better – indeed that they are morally superior people.
    Between Brexit and Covid, it now ought to be clear to people that our so-called “democracy” is skin-deep and – push come to shove – meaningless.

    As far as Farage is concerned, from other things which he has said he seems to think that this is the beginning of the end for the EU. It is therefore possible that, in his mind, the deficiencies in the agreement will in due course become otiose – or at least the EU will be in no position to enforce them.

    As a piece of trivia, I overlapped with Johnson at Balliol by two years. He is extremely unlikely to remember me, but he really was a larger-than-life figure who was a centre of attention – including in his own mind.

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