We’ve had backstops, level playing fields, hard & soft Brexits and a veritable shower of various other petals of EU word-confetti. The UK has of course added its own: oven-ready, Canada-Plus and Australian terms. All of them designed to label something that their patrons never progress to articulate beyond a one-liner.
And now, there is a new kid on the block. Well, not quite new. In fact, it has been lurking in the shadows for some time now, but has now been kidnapped and held hostage in the great Euro siege, firmly entrenched as the domestic Brexit buzzword of choice:
A failure of statecraft.
Think of a more grating line, I dare you. Or at least one that is tossed out more blithely and hypocritically in the world of politics? You would struggle on that score, though arguably Cake pushes it all the way. It now seems to have been reserved for all matters negotiation, but it won’t be exemplified by any inevitably fudged deal to be squeezed from the Brussels balloon knot. Failure full stop has been the stock in trade of British politics for the last five years, and more likely longer.
Whatever the outcome of the Brussels conflab, it will be deemed to be a failure of stagecraft. Even a deal when none of the slogan spouters will have been privy to the detail of the talks. Even if they are apprised of the deets, not many of them will have the nous to assemble them onto cohesive logic. It is why opposition droids have no problem in telling us what Johnson is, but flounder on articulating the why. Habitually, they don’t even bother.
Given our current slide towards the abyss, it is no stretch to lock Johnson & Co within the crosshairs, and rightly so. But what of the Remain confederacy who snatched defeat from the Jaws of victory in situ from a consolidated position of 43 years of EEC/EC/EU membership? They never deigned to flesh out their reasoning, and they bit the dust. Were it mere lies that defeated them, then their performance was clearly a….
No, I’m not going to say it.
FoS flop Sir Keith knocks out the fallacious phrase like clockwork without grasping that his whole leadership is a failure, albeit not of statecraft. He is after all no statesman. This week, on a talk-in radio show, he was steamrollered by an alt-right, white supremacist fruitcake. He is so bogged down in the rut of terminal appeasement, that calling out fascists and eviscerating them is now deemed too risky for the Leader of the Labour Party.
Just take a moment to reflect on that.
It should alone cook his leadership goose, but it won’t. The bar has already plunged to within a whisker of a slug’s salted entrails, so in practice, the only way is up. And that is likely the Starmer shadow strategy. Avoid all the toughies for the first 4 years and then campaign hard on the final straight. The problem for us all is that, as a result, we get 4 years of unbridled hyper-charlatanism and über-incompetence.
But back to the crusty construction itself. Why has it so captivated our layabout lawmakers? We don’t need to venture out too far to harness the bleedin’ obvious. It’s an oven-ready expression that represents the wholesale dismissal of an individual’s political capability in one fell swoop. It needs no supporting rationale and no hard graft. It is a handy catch-all – a form of blanket denial.
Now blanket denials are a feature of many a pisspoor legal case – advice that any brief would doubtless proffer for an immodest fee – because it typically betrays that the bundle has not been read, there is a weak case, or the other party simply wishes to buy time. More than likely, it reflects an aversion to hard graft. For our current batch of Commons desperadoes, pick any of the above or a combination thereof.
I know, the Starmbannführer is a lawyer, but how good a one is anybody’s guess. You might think that he is cleverer than I, but I had Jimmy Savile down as a nailed-on nonce three decades before (the then DPP) Sir Keith abstained on a prosecution decision. Yes, careerist fence-sitting is what sustains the shitshow of political mediocrity in the UK.
As for the Fib Dems, it pains me to conceive what anodyne furrow Slur Ed Davey is currently ploughing because it seems an age since he last publicly opened his trap, which I think was a woeful recording of his hari-kari-inducing Ramadan fast.
He is not going to entertain the small matter of a national freefall being permitted to impinge on his pronoun angst, his Tibetan basket weaving, or his mastery of Level 2 Eritrean Cuisine via some European Skills Council distance learning course. Best to leave him to his fibbing liberal escapism, the village fete jams, and the Euro sandcastle flags.
Lest we forget, this is 2020, and an appetite for drilling down into complex and challenging detail for the formulation of factual rebuttals is way beyond today’s political hacks. Everything gets wrapped up into general statements that arouse emotions but do not win the argument. It’s all about throwing up enough front to retain a plush seat on the gravy train.
Make no mistake, Johnson is a hopeless buffoon and a failure, but those in elected positions need to map out why and win the battles that matter, where they matter. Any opposition leader worth their salt would already have driven a stake right through the fat man’s pallid heart. And right now, the stakes have never been higher.
Johnson does not even bother dressing up his blatherskite, which rather sums up the wider context. There’s nobody there to challenge him. It is why we are presently at the mercy of a whimsical, shizzle-birthing man-baby.
Far from Johnson’s twaddle being the emperor’s new clothes, it is now the Australian clothes.
You know, it takes some brass neck to whip out such risibly absurd, implausible poppycock like Australian terms. Yet for Albino boy to snag traction with it and for such verbal dross to slip comfortably into the Brexit lexicon? That tells its own story about our one-way politics. And the direction is all the way down.
Opposition ‘leaders’ are too busy either shamelessly virtue-signalling or flinging out empty buzzwords. They should be getting down in the weeds and putting their backs into the fight for their communities
Their reticence is a failure of base graft.