2023, How Will it Be?

Posted on January 1, 2023

For several years now, it has felt like every new year becomes worse than the last. If we roll it right back, it all started with David Cameron. In 2015, he concluded that his only way to an election majority was to pacify the party wack jobs with a referendum. He gambled, thinking the public wouldn’t be as stupid as the swivel eyed lunatics on his back benches. Bad call.

Eton Rivals

What Cameron didn’t reckon on was his charismatic Eton rival, Boris Johnson, spotting a route to power. Johnson, formerly a remainer, utilised Dominic Cummings and vintage populist slogans to swing the vote that would divide Britain for years come. After Cameron ran off home for his tea (and to do some shameless lobbying for factoring companies) Johnson sat back, threw knives via his Telegraph column, and watched the hapless, almost pitiful Theresa May, get herself in a Brexit pickle. Johnson seized his opportunity after her disaster of an election in 2017.

Many political commentators thought that Johnson might be able to perform with the backing of a strong and experienced cabinet. His positivity could be channelled by political heavyweights prepared to do the hard yards whilst he fell off his bike and wore his suit the wrong way round. They were mistaken. Instead of intellects, Johnson filled his cabinet with inexperienced sycophants bereft of political nous. The result was utter chaos with the party pushing itself further and further to the right in search of support. At the same time, Tory centrists queued up to inform anyone prepared to listen, that Johnson was a fucking idiot unfit for high office.

Fag Packet Brexit

Johnson’s ‘back of a fag packet’ Brexit deal was so pitifully bad, it beggared belief. All it did was demonstrate that he is an utter charlatan. A man bereft of shame or responsibility, who will do anything to maintain power. To him, ousting Cameron and bullshitting his way to the top gig, was nothing more than a power game.

The chancers, racists and tax dodgers behind the catastrophe that is Brexit, have been lucky up until now. The Covid pandemic and war in Ukraine has allowed them an excuse for a collapsing economy whilst filling their pockets with PPE bungs. However, it’s all wearing a bit thin and even some of the staunchest of Tories are turned off by people getting rich via a catastrophic pensioner genocide.

Truss and Sunak

Once the Johnson debacle came to an inevitability ugly end, Tory centrists prayed for stability. They were to be disappointed. Liz Truss a walking example of how high academic achievement doesn’t mean common sense, somehow got to be PM. It took just a few weeks for an unchecked budget to wreck the economy by a further 75 billion. In came the person she beat in the leadership contest and it was assumed a form of normality might take hold. That turned out to be naive. Sunak, looking increasingly like a malfunctioning robot, engaged the detestable crackpot, Suella Braverman, as Home Secretary. The ‘new leader bounce’ never arrived.

So, we move into 2023 with the poverty bar edging up towards the lower middle classes and no plan to dig the UK out of a self-inflicted hole. It looks very much like the Tories are finished and they know it. There is almost an acceptance that the talentless MP’s engaged by Johnson will get trounced at the next election. Some have already said they won’t stand to save themselves from a Michael Portillo moment. Others are looking for one final way of raiding the public pot..

Starmer the Charmer?

So, if this is to be the year Keir Starmer consolidates his huge lead over the Tories, how is he going to galvanise us? For many, he is not an inspiring or charismatic character, or indeed, left-wing enough. However, in my opinion, we could do with a bit grey suited efficiency above right or left wing populism. Starmer appears to have grown ups in his cabinet who have political experience and a pragmatic approach. Personally, I am not into adoring political leaders, I just want them to be efficient. It’s not X Factor.

Yet, there is still the colossal elephant in the room that won’t go away. It is impossible to make Brexit a success and if Starmer honestly believes it can be, he is delusional. My best guess is that Starmer is being forced into biding his time. If he demonises Brexit when he is in touching distance of power, the right-wing media will launch a brutal ‘Charmer Starmer is a Traitor’ campaign. It could derail him.

It is more likely that Starmer knows that Brexit is a disaster and he is allowing public opinion to turn further against it before making his move. He will start by readily allowing information about the cost of it all to drip feed into the minds of the masses. He can then claim ‘the will of the people’ has made him reconsider how we can realign with the Customs Union.

I guess it’s a case of watch this space.

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