Marx once explained that history tends to repeat itself: first as tragedy, and then as farce. Past Tory governments have been tragedies. But this Johnson government is truly farcical.
Even the highly critical Sue Gray report into partygate, with damning evidence and revelations of repeated lockdown violations, is unlikely to force him out of office. Like Houdini, Boris has managed to escape with just one measly fine over his part in Downing Street’s illegal gatherings.
As with previous statements, the PM responded at PMQs today with a shrug and an insincere apology, repeating his appeal for MPs and the public to “move on”.
Without any clear alternative to replace the beleaguered Tory leader, meanwhile, any potential push from Conservative backbenchers has run out of steam.
“I don’t think this will be the killer blow,” stated one Whitehall official.
“I am increasingly depressed,” remarked one Tory MP. “There’s a growing feeling he’ll still be here at the next election.”
In other words, his Operation Save Big Dog has succeeded – for the moment.
Nevertheless, the Prime Minister has become a complete liability, with his personal ratings at rock bottom. The Conservatives are trailing behind Labour – all of which does not bode well for the next general election. But the party appears to be stuck with him, at least for now.
Johnson, a total maverick, was never the choice of big business for Tory leader. Far from it. He is too reckless, stupid, and unpredictable, to say the least. He is only interested in one thing: Boris Johnson.
As a result, he is utterly cavalier with everything, whatever the consequences. He is economical with the truth on all matters, as long as it serves his personal interests and vanity.
He deliberately lied in saying that he would ‘get Brexit done’, boldly asserting that there would be no border down the Irish sea. He lied about lockdown parties held at Number 10. And he regularly misleads Parliament.
This charade has finally caught up with him. But Big Dog remains defiant, feeling that he has gotten away with it.
“The biggest reason why the prime minister is still in office,” states the Financial Times, “is, still, that none of the Tory contenders to replace him have persuaded Conservative MPs that they are an obvious upgrade.”
In other words, they could end up with someone even worse! As the old saying goes: better the devil you know.
This says everything you need to know about the present Tory Party. It has been taken over by a rabid rabble, known as the ‘hang ‘em, flog ‘em’ brigade.
The Conservative Party was once the envy of the ruling classes across the world. But not anymore. This decline and demise, in turn, is a reflection of the complete degeneration of British capitalism.
Despite a majority of 80 in Parliament, the Tory government is being shaken like a government of crisis. They are in disarray.
At the same time, millions are experiencing a cost-of-living crisis that will only get worse. The Tories’ answer? To whip up a crisis over the Northern Ireland protocol, provoking a further bust up with the European Union.
This threat by Johnson to tear up the protocol, which he personally signed up to, could lead to an unwinnable trade war with the EU. But so what? It could threaten the stability of the North of Ireland, paralyse Stormont, and fuel sectarianism. But who cares? As long as it can deflect away from the Tories’ troubles – that is the Prime Minister’s only priority.
These attempted distractions will not cover up the scale and magnitude of the crisis that the Tories now face.
With inflation at 9% and rising, and the economy facing a recession, Rishi Sunak is under pressure to act.
The Tory right wing, opposed to a windfall tax on the energy monopolies, are leading the charge for tax cuts. Sunak would love to oblige, but he fears that unfunded tax cuts will stoke further inflation, pushing up interest rates and the cost of debt.
Having been forced to bail out capitalism during the pandemic, Sunak now wants to push the deficit down.
In addressing the conference of the CBI, the bosses’ union, the Chancellor explained: “There is no measure that any government could take, no law we could pass, that can make these global forces disappear overnight.”
“The next few months will be tough,” Sunak added – although not for him, of course: he has just made his debut on the Sunday Times Rich List, with he and his wife’s wealth estimated at £730 million, no doubt thanks to their tax-dodging exploits.
In fact, for the working class, it will not be months, but years ahead that will be “tough”.
Already, many are finding it difficult to put food on the table. Food bank demand is soaring. People are being forced to cut back. There are cases of people turning off fridges to save on electricity, at the risk of giving their children food poisoning.
And things are about to get a damn sight worse.
The Tories have shown nothing but contempt for the millions who are struggling. Conservative backbencher Lee Anderson, who gets £84,144 a year as an MP, suggested that people should be able to get by on thirty-pence meals. One Tory minister, meanwhile, stated that if you are struggling in low-paid work, you should just find another job or work more hours.
Such comments only add to the anger building up in society – against the Tory government, and the establishment generally. The moneyed elites and their system are increasingly despised in this ‘them and us’ society.
We are sitting on a volcano. Police chiefs are already warning of social explosions. The ground is being prepared for titanic class battles.
In this struggle, millions will come to realise that only by doing away with this profit-driven dog-eat-dog society, and introducing a socialist planned economy, can our problems be solved.