Thursday, August 5

The Lord Chancellor and the idiots in the park agree: it’s all about how many companions you have | Marina Hyde

OROn Monday, the prime minister could be found mumbling into the camera on a factory tour, dressed not only in a helmet and a high-visibility jacket, but also in a white lab coat. Finally, he owns the three Infinity garments. I am confident that you will exercise your power responsibly.

In fact, Johnson tried to claim credit for removing Matt Hancock from his position as secretary of health when news of his affair broke. “That’s right,” said the prime minister, “and that’s why when I saw the story on Friday we had a new secretary of state for health on Saturday.” I mean … at least when Trump did this kind of thing, he wasn’t dressed like the television characters of three children at once. What actually happened, as you may recall, is that Johnson did not fire Hancock, and his official spokesman repeated a single line several times: that the prime minister had accepted Hancock’s apology and closed the matter.

However, Last Friday is now a movie that upset even Johnson’s fandom and therefore must be reconditioned for monday, as if it were The last jedi or something. Ideally, screaming fanboys will soon argue over which version of Hancock’s departure from the government is actually canon. Is it the one we all saw with our own eyes on Friday, where the prime minister was too wet and personally committed to do the obviously right thing and fire Hancock? Or is it the one the prime minister retrospectively rephrased on Monday, where he fired him?

The problem with what we might call The Rise of Shitetalker is that these falsehoods are moving too fast for even Johnson’s most nimble ministers. On Monday, Michael Gove explained to reporters that Johnson had done the right thing by not firing Hancock, sadly unaware that the official implication now was that Johnson had fired him. Honestly Michael: put your head in the game. What’s the matter with you?

Perhaps the answer to that question is hidden somewhere in your wife’s most striking thoughts. column for the Mail on Sunday, in which Sarah Vine explained how, other than David Cameron, literally every politician she’d ever met treated his wife and family like shit (I paraphrase, but only like the prime minister does, so it’s well). We learned that this was not a wise way to treat the wife. “The problem with the wife who has known you long before you were king of the world is that she sees through your facade,” Sarah commented softly. “She knows your fears and your insecurities. She knows that deep down, you are not the Master of the Universe that you pretend to be. And some people don’t like to be reminded of that. “

Good now. I can’t help but feel that if we keep cutting through this thorny thicket of prose, we might eventually find ourselves with a sleeping princess of meaning locked into it. Either that or Sarah will drop a visual album in Tidal one of these nights.

Yet in a crowded field, easily Johnson’s crudest defense came from Attorney General Robert Buckland, who began this week in politics by explaining to the Today show that Johnson’s popularity should be the sole arbiter of morality. “The public is not interested in this issue because it has nothing to do with public interests,” said the current chancellor. “What matters is what is happening, and that is why the prime minister has his finger on the pulse of the nation … the truth is that a lot of people just don’t like the prime minister and can’t get over the fact. it’s popular in the country. “

So we move on, they always want you to go ahead with the video of drunken idiots stalking Chris Whitty in a London park. This is very depressing footage. Of course, there have always been idiots. But there’s something more of the Johnson era to this kind of clip, where youthful disdain for boundaries is increasingly felt a part of everyday life. Written on the laughing, lewd faces of Whitty’s torturers is a set of assumptions: that it doesn’t matter how many members of the passing public can see his behavior and gauge it for what it is, that his behavior doesn’t really matter, that it’s all a laugh. and to be popular online are miles more important than being decent.

I think we can be pretty sure these two weren’t listening to Radio 4 at 8.10 that morning, but if they had, they would have heard the attorney general hint more or less the same thing. It is curious that the government ministers now ask that they be brought to justice. After all, we got a glimpse of the Lord Chancellor’s apparent worldview on Monday morning. Are these guys popular? Do they have a lot of companions? Then stop insisting, they have done nothing wrong.

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