Thursday 21 September 2023

The Golden Thread Will Forever Shine Brightly?

Well-dressed though he is for a man of 74, and therefore far from a naked Emperor, the King should have spoken gibberish to the French Parliament, to see whether anyone would have said anything. But I told you that he was the sort of Tory that had lately taken to voting Green, while that party had become thoroughly pro-war over Ukraine.

As at the Last Night of the Proms, those EU flags, which could not conceivably have flanked the King without his and indeed the British Government's permission, were the flags of the people whom the boundary changes had turned back into the key swing voters. Those who wave the Confederate flag as an expression of Southern pride do at least refer to "the Lost Cause". But those who wave the EU flag as an expression of Southern pride regard their Cause as anything but Lost.

They may be right. While Keir Starmer talks about non-divergence from EU rules, Rishi Sunak gets on and de-diverges from them, following the EU's lead by pushing back the ban on petrol and diesel cars to 2035. Speaking of cars, the reason even rich people do not always drive in London is because they do not have to, while the reason even very poor people often do not use public transport anywhere else is because there is little or, far from uncommonly, none to use.

Sunak will be long gone by 2035, although he will still be only 55. Those of us in our forties do wonder about this mid-career Prime Minister, the fourth such of our adult lifetimes, even if one of them was only Liz Truss. Like us, and like Tony Blair and David Cameron before him, Sunak is looking to what comes next. All of his decisions are with an eye to who will be employing him in five, 10 or 15 years' time.

Although of course Sunak will not need the money. He could fund a General Election out of his own pocket and not even notice, so anyone making a "donation" to the governing party that he leads is really buying something from the State. And they receive it. In abundance. The daily corruption has become almost invisible. As GK Chesterton said, some things are too big to see.

No doubt planning to head for Californian retirement in his sixties, Sunak is no Rupert Murdoch. Although why do some people spit at the mere mention of Murdoch? Which other media are any better? Likewise the people, some of whom are the same people, who abominate the very name of the BBC. Compared to what, exactly?

But when I tell you that there is going to be a hung Parliament, then you can take that to the bank. I spent the 2005 Parliament saying that it was psephologically impossible for the Heir to Blair's Conservative Party to win an overall majority. I predicted a hung Parliament on the day that the 2017 General Election was called, and I stuck to that, entirely alone, all the way up to the publication of the exit poll eight long weeks later. And on the day that Sunak became Prime Minister, I predicted that a General Election between him and Starmer would result in a hung Parliament.

To strengthen families and communities by securing economic equality and international peace through the democratic political control of the means to those ends, including national and parliamentary sovereignty, we need to hold the balance of power. Owing nothing to either main party, we must be open to the better offer. There does, however, need to be a better offer. Not a lesser evil, which in any case the Labour Party is not.


  1. 436 words until the liturgical doxology and only 615 in all, the amount you manage to pack in is amazing.