Our old chum Boris Johnson is finally out of office. He’d been hanging on doing nothing much except pout about the injustice of it all. He’s convinced himself that his fate was not his fault. Nothing is ever Boris’ fault. Poor Boris.
The new Tory leader and Prime Minister is Liz Truss who considers herself the second coming of Margaret Thatcher. Nobody else does, especially not ace pundit Andrew Rawnsley:
Even the slowest-witted member of the Conservative party must have twigged by now. The pussy-bow blouse she wore to one of the televised debates. All those shriekingly unsubtle snaps of her riding a tank, sitting in a fighter jet and wearing a faux fur hat in Moscow’s Red Square. Added to which are the thudding claims that she is a steely woman of conviction who will bulldoze through establishment obstruction in a heroic mission to save Britain. Liz Truss is not quite so crass as to explicitly call herself the second Margaret Thatcher, but she is very happy to encourage that illusion among Tory members.
She certainly reminds me of a blond prime minister with intense ambitions and an outsize personality, but not that one. The Tory leader she most resembles is not Mrs Thatcher. It is Boris Johnson.”
Tell us what you really think, Andrew.
I’ve decided to call the new PM Blind Truss as the blind are leading the blind while Boris lurks in the wings plotting his return.
Thatcher was quite correctly accused of back seat driving during John Major’s time as Prime Minster. In his last Prime Minister’s Questions, Boris offered Truss some unsolicited advice:
“Focus on the road ahead, but always remember to check the rear-view mirror.”
Sounds like back seat driving to me. Truss should heed the sage advice of Bela Lugosi in Glen or Glenda:
I wonder if Blind Truss blindly asked HM if she reminded her of Thatcher, which would be a bad move since the Queen was known not to be overly fond of Maggie T Handbag. Did Truss show her this side-by-side image?
Funny thing that the Dukakis in the tank picture tanked his campaign but Maggie got away with it. Truss is as of yet untested by the broader electorate as she was elected only by MPs and Conservative party members. Stay tuned.
Blind Truss does not seem to have worn well during the leadership campaign. Her favorable rating is between 30-33%.
She’s also engaging in some Rishi Business by not including her rival the former Chancellor Rishi Sunak in her cabinet. Perhaps he should try the Tom Cruise in Risky Business thing:
Let’s bid an unfond adieu to Boris Johnson. In an article in the Guardian, historians think he’s the most polarizing PM since Lloyd George hence this picture pairing:
David Lloyd George was the man who helped win the Great War as Prime Minister but also blew up the Liberal party because of his part in ousting fellow Liberal HH Asquith from Number 10 during the war. Asquith took it personally and their party split going from one of the parties of government to out of power until 2010 when their successor party the Liberal Democrats went into coalition with the Tories. They were decimated at the next election and their leader Nick Clegg lost his seat, moved to California, and went to work at Facebook. At least he didn’t emulate Lloyd George and become pro-Fascist.
FYI, HH Asquith is Helena Bonham Carter’s great-grandfather. How’s that for trivia?
Back to Boris’ place in history:
Johnson detractors may have accused him of misleading – or, as the former Speaker John Bercow put it, of having “an insouciant and flippant disregard for the accuracy of what he says to the House of Commons” – but others may characterise it as “more often wishful thinking or exaggeration”, Gimson said.
He added: “I think he is part of a tradition in English public life of big figures who couldn’t really care less about rules. It’s difficult to think of anyone like him who is still alive.”
In the pantheon of UK premiers, Johnson must claim his place as among the most scandalous, according to the contemporary historian Sir Anthony Seldon, political biographer of all UK prime ministers since Thatcher, and whose biography of Johnson is due in the spring.
“His premiership was controversial and historic, because of Brexit, the landslide, and Covid, but also historically wasted opportunities. To have squandered the landslide is really unusual. He simply didn’t know how to be prime minister, hadn’t a clue,” said Seldon.”
Bye bye Boris, hello Blind Truss.
The last word goes to Declan MacManus DBA Elvis Costello with a scathing song about the woman Liz Truss idolizes and emulates: