Tag Archives: displacement

Our Government is a Stage Magician

Onstage, the magician does not perform an act of magic (spoilers I know) but of distractions. Whilst the rabbit is being yanked from a top hat, the spotlight focused firmly upon its fluffy ears, the magician performs his deceit elsewhere. The Johnson administration has been doing this since it first stepped into Number 10, albeit without the rabbit (though I am sure Mr Rees-Mogg can provide a top hat).

The first smokescreens appeared before and during the 2019 General Election campaign. The inflammatory entitlement of bills as ‘surrender acts’ and CCHQ twitter posing as an independent fact checker meant nothing to crucial swing voters, but attracted uproar from political commentators and activists, distracting from meaningful issues. It was at this same time that the Conservative manifesto was published, detailing economic policies unlikely to please northern Labour voters the Conservatives were gunning for. However, the furore surrounding the aforementioned ‘nothing’ issues overshadowed scrutiny of the manifesto. The rabbit reared its head and hooked the audience, the magic worked. Johnson won.

Next, it was time for a reshuffle, and with it another conjuror’s trick. Despite padding-out support within cabinet, he accidentally booted his Chancellor. With David’s departure, audiences of microphones turned to the Prime Minister. The spotlight then fine-tuned its focus on government, when accusations of bullying and unfair dismissal were levelled at the Home Secretary. Yet, when media scrutiny was firmly locked onto the new cabinet, Johnson bamboozled again. Despite having gotten engaged three months previous, Johnson first officially announced his engagement to Carrie Symonds, enveloping the attention himself. On the 1st March, a day after the most senior Home Office civil servant accused Priti Patel of bullying and just a week after the Chancellor’s resignation, the front pages of The Times, Mail, Express, Sun and Telegraph were covered in lovers’ portraits of the happy couple. The announcement’s timing drowned mentions of Patel’s behaviour, keeping Johnson buoyant in the polls.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 5 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 14th Jul - 5:51pm
    This is useful from Paul. It is of little interest whether countries differ in compiling methods. It is plain. Countries that took this seriously, early,...
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 14th Jul - 5:36pm
    @ Joe B Another one at a time question: "Most of the money in the economy is provided by the commercial banking sector" Does the...
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 14th Jul - 5:31pm
    @ Joe B, Lets just take it one at a time. I think this is the only chance of getting a straight answer. Are you...
  • User AvatarJohn Marriott 14th Jul - 5:28pm
    @Marco So not that many then. I wonder why? Are the rest of us just nuts? Can’t we just move on?
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 14th Jul - 5:26pm
    @ Joe B, Lets just take it one a time.
  • User AvatarSean Hagan 14th Jul - 5:14pm
    I wish Mimi well in her challenging new role - but perhaps someone could clarify whether she has any relevant experience of political campaigns or...