WWhat’s a worse sign of weakness: Going on TV to terrorize the nation to distract you from your illicit cheese and wine parties, or bombing an aspirin factory to distract from a grand jury investigation into your illicit blowjobs?
In strictly limited terms, there are some similarities between Boris Johnson Speech to the Nation on Sunday, and Bill Clinton’s 1998 announcement of the bombing of a Sudanese pharmaceutical plant, three days after the then US president testified and lied at Monica Lewinsky’s hearings. Both Clinton and Johnson are men of diverse “appetites,” of course, and Clinton was believed to be leaning toward a useful distraction with her solemn live appearance on America’s television screens. Given the utter cynicism that Johnson inspires, some might say the same of the prime minister, with Sunday’s decision to re-announce his reinforcement push against the Omicron variant feeling at least conveniently timed to divert attention from the multiple allegations of breach of the rules that now haunt him. Full operation # 10. But the key difference is that while the Omicron threat is not yet fully quantified, it is certainly real and could be disastrous for the already reeling NHS. The Clinton Chemical Weapons Factory, meanwhile, turned out not be one at allRather than a facility that produced more than half of Sudan’s vital drugs, from anti-malaria drugs to tuberculosis drugs.
Other differences? At least Bubba brushed his hair to address his nation. I don’t know about you, but I’m getting a bit tired of my vital public health messages being delivered by someone who appears to have been forcibly dragged away from a trembling knees in the stationery closet in one of Downing Street. famous Christmas parties. No matter how many of these addresses we have to sit down on, Johnson’s last words to an attendee just prior to his release are always perceived to be the same. “God, you’re a party pooper, buddy, I was almost over.” [FROZEN LOOK] Shit, are we rolling?
The main problem, obviously, is the fact that these very serious reports are spearheaded by the little prime minister who screamed wolf. Johnson is such a notable liar in absolutely everything else that it seems strange to be asked to believe him in matters of life and death. No one could be more wrong; it’s like watching a rice pudding play King Lear. Unsurprisingly, fewer and fewer people seem to take it seriously each time, especially his own advocates.
Perhaps it is appropriate that someone who was such a selfish and irresponsible MP is now at the mercy of so many equally determined subordinates. In the Conservative parliamentary party, it certainly seems that an anything goes atmosphere is taking over. Regardless of the actual efficacy of vaccine passports, and testing is a much better way out, we have to lament the kind of morally bankrupt political culture in which Yeovil MP Marcus Fysh feels free to publicly compare his proposal. introduction to “Nazi Germany.”
Dear darling. Marcus is a person who has been lavished with all the high-end educational advantages at every stage of his life, but still, somehow, he HAS to mention the Holocaust because people might need to flash an app to get into a mega-Spoons on a busy night. It doesn’t exactly fill one with the hope of serious medium-term solutions to our ongoing and recurring problems. Covid will be endemic, which means we should invest in the NHS and rebuild capacity and stamina lost from years of cutbacks and bogus efficiencies, along with specialty clinics … The only thing is, guys like Marcus might have to vote for it. Then we won’t.
For now, Johnson would rather scare people into a system that is not capable of doing what it promised on Sunday. This is not a sophisticated, smart, or even polite way to do politics, and it is certainly not effective, as will be seen in the coming weeks and probably months.
However, it is a way of making any pending failures someone else’s fault. What a surprise that a guy who spent last week insisting that there had been no party in Downing Street now just says that personally did not break any rules. The same will happen with this promise of a million hits a day. As Johnson’s spokesman insisted yesterday, it is actually simply a target, and “no one will be guilty if that doesn’t happen.” Sure! They sure won’t.
Meanwhile, in what once again seems like a crucial stage in the pandemic, many are growing weary of being told to take responsibility by a guy who never does. I read this morning that the Tory rebellion discussed it’s causing “yet another headache for the PM,” and he wondered what it will take to calm him down. Maybe a couple of aspirin factories. It always pulls you out of a hole.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism