Tag Archives: boris johnson

Boris as Foreign Secretary? That was unexpected…

So, just as Theresa May left Buckingham Palace, I had to leave home to go for a meeting. When I stepped out into an Edinburgh street and checked my phone two hours later, I realised I’d stepped into a parallel universe.  I must have done. I mean, a new Prime Minister known for careful and cautious deliberation appointing a man who had grossly insulted the President of the United States just a few weeks ago as the country’s top diplomat? It’s probably worth reminding ourselves of Boris’s response to President Obama’s “back of the queue” speech.

Johnson, a high-profile figure in the campaign for Britain to leave the EU, wrote about the decision of the Obama administration to remove a bust of Britain’s wartime leader Winston Churchill from the Oval Office.

“Some said it was a snub to Britain. Some said it was a symbol of the part-Kenyan president’s ancestral dislike of the British empire – of which Churchill had been such a fervent defender,” said Johnson in an article designed to hit back at Obama after the US president waded into the EU referendum debate on Friday.

As it happens, the bust was removed before Obama even took office. Again, like many of the Leave campaign’s claims, only the most casual relationship with the truth.

And then there was the time when he compared the EU to Hitler. 

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 56 Comments

Laws: Cameron was frightened of Boris

David-LawsI just happened upon the tail end of Michael Crick’s Channel 4 programme about the relationship between Cameron and Boris. I’m looking forward to seeing the rest of it. The programme contains an interview with David Laws in which he says that Cameron and Osborne were always very sensitive to what Boris was doing. Asked if he thought Cameron was frightened of Boris, David said “Yes.”

He also savaged the Prime Minister for putting the country through this referendum, taking such a huge gamble with the nation’s future,   purely to try to deal with the age-old split in his party.

Michael Crick wrote about his programme for the Radio Times site:

Some see Johnson’s declaration in favour of Brexit as another calculated move, albeit a huge gamble – one that almost matches Cameron’s big risk in holding the referendum in the first place. The friends and allies of 2005 are now seemingly adversaries to the death, as Cameron increasingly came to fear Johnson as the only man who could really destroy his leadership.

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 6 Comments

Under Hitler, Europeans were killing each other; now they are arguing over Eurovision

 

Tim Farron has strongly condemned Boris Johnson’s extraordinary comparison of the EU with Hitler.

Tim said:

Under Hitler, Europeans were killing each other, now they are arguing over Eurovision.

The European Union is what happens when countries seek to learn from the past and work together. Boris Johnson’s latest intervention is what happens when people refuse to learn the lessons of the past and seek to spread discord by inventing conspiracies.

The EU has helped secure peace; Hitler destroyed peace and killed millions of innocent people. It is extraordinary that anyone even needs to point this out to him.

Posted in London | Also tagged and | 9 Comments

Farron and Paddy condemn Boris’s Hitler comments

When you fall foul of Godwin’s Law by bringing Hitler into a conversation, you have to expect to be criticised. Boris Johnson isn’t stupid. Far from it. He was trying to get those two words resounding in people’s heads. It doesn’t matter that he refined his comments in the interview. The headlines turbo-boost the poison dripping from the Brexiteers in their highly emotive campaign. They play on people’s fears and suggest that leaving the EU would solve all our problems.

Both Tim Farron and Paddy Ashdown have been quick to resoundingly condemn Boris’s comments. Tim said:

Under Hitler, Europeans were killing each other, now they are arguing over Eurovision.

The European Union is what happens when countries seek to learn from the past and work together. Boris Johnson’s latest intervention is what happens when people refuse to learn the lessons of the past and seek to spread discord by inventing conspiracies.

The EU has helped secure peace; Hitler destroyed peace and killed millions of innocent people. It is extraordinary that anyone even needs to point this out to him.

While Paddy tweeted:

They are right, but we need more proactive, positive commentary from them too:

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 23 Comments

Could Trumpland reach Britain?

We all hope that Donald Trump will not be the next US President; even if he wins the Republican nomination, it’s unlikely that he will win over a majority of states and voters. But his astonishing success so far, in mobilising the embittered, marginalised and nostalgic, all those who feel they have lost out through rapid economic and social change, has lessons for British politics.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 35 Comments

Tim Farron: ‘Boris has had more positions on Europe than the Kama Sutra’

Commenting on Boris Johnson’s announcement that he will campaign for a “leave” vote in the EU referendum, Tim Farron said:

This is a deeply cynical move from a deeply ambitious politician who is using an in-out referendum as a back door to Number 10. It is a selfish move to put personal ambition before the jobs, security and prosperity of every Londoner.

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 68 Comments

2016 prediction: Miriam for LibDem leader

MiriamOK. An apology for bare-faced clickbait, as well as a whole slew of excuses for actually, physically, buying the Daily Mail, are necessary:

  1. I couldn’t find a copy of i or The Times at Nero’s, so I was reduced to reading their free copy of the Daily Mail in a sort of post-modern ironist sort of way.
  2. I saw this “story” and thought it would provide an innocent scintilla of amusement for an otherwise bored LDV reader.
  3. In an attempt at mobile-detox, I had left my mobile at home. I therefore didn’t have a camera to take a pic of the page (right).
  4. I guessed (wrongly) that this story wouldn’t be available online but, anyway, guessed (rightly) that the printed page would “big up” this story more than the online version.
  5. I think this is the first Daily Mail I have bought for several years.
  6. I was otherwise bored.
  7. I was only following orders.
Posted in Humour | Also tagged , , and | 3 Comments
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