I’m leaving on a jet plane…don’t know when I’ll be back again’ – this is not strictly true as we hopefully will return in a couple of weeks. I hope by then the country will have returned to some degree of sanity. I am utterly astonished and somewhat depressed at the way that our media and social media have reacted to the rather extraordinary General Election we have just had in the United Kingdom. The amount of hysteria, hatred and hyperbole is so depressing. So let’s try and and make some sense of it all…
1) The Tories are Mourning a Win
Although the Conservatives increased their vote and will be the next government – May is severely damaged, because of her bad campaign, and may not survive. If it were not for the fact that there is no obvious successor I think she would be gone. A lot will depend on how she handles the next few weeks. I feel sorry for her mainly because of the hatred and abuse she receives. The loathsome George Osbourne could hardly wait to stick his knife in – and he was joined by SNP, Labour and some Conservatives. What people seem to forget is that the Tories actually won….and they won with a higher percentage of the vote than they had in 2015. They will form the government thanks to support from the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) from Northern Ireland. Because of the fixed parliament act and the Brexit negotiations, I doubt that there will be another election for five years.
Sane comment on all sides has been rare – here is an example of such comment from one of my favourite politicians – this is no political bias- Andy Burnham of Labour, Alex Neil of the SNP and Menzies Campbell of the Lib-Dems are also worth listening to!).
2) The DUP are the power brokers in town
The twitterati and liberal elites have gone crazy. It’s as though the Taliban, have linked with ISIS and the KKK and come to take over Britain. All kinds of scare stories are doing the rounds about backward Northern Irish, creationist, right-wing, terrorists! If you want an example of how prejudiced and dumbed down political discourse in the UK has become then just look at the hysteria and hatred surrounding the DUP (sadly some Christians even seem willing to join in the mob). The facts are that the DUP are not a terrorist organization, they have been power sharing with Sinn Fenn in Northern Ireland, they are not going to enter into a formal coalition and they want to retain the triple lock on pensions, an open border with the Republic of Ireland and various other social policies. But the reason the liberal progressives are so wound up is that the DUP are opposed to SSM and abortion. This is enough to put you in the same category as ISIS in some eyes. I wish Ruth Davidson and her progressive colleagues in all parties could show as much passion about caring for the poor, as they do about promoting the LGBTIQA agenda. For them social liberalism seems to be the be all and end all. When the ‘progressives’ were arguing for SSM and saying that it would be something that was voluntary and people would not have to agree with, I said that this would last a couple of years and then anyone opposed to SSM would be considered an extremist. And so it has come to pass. Tolerance is so yesterday.
When you get this kind of hysteria you also get hypocrisy. Take for example the SNP – whose remaining MP’s are desperately tweeting about how evil the DUP are – forgetting that their former leader, Alex Salmond, is on record as saying that whilst the SNP would never enter into coalition with the Tories they would with the DUP! For a more balanced perspective on the DUP read this from Peter Lynas on Premier
(Again Brendan O’Neill gets it spot on – “Blimey, the Twitter sneering and broadsheet horror at the DUP because they aren’t totally au fait with gay marriage or abortion rights is getting really obnoxious. It’s basically: “Oh shit, here come the rednecks.” Memo to the media elite: *some people have a different point of view to yours”.) And this piece in The Spectator
3) Scottish Independence is off the table for at least a decade
The SNP leadership, especially Sturgeon and her husband Peter Murrell have suffered the result of their own hubris. The delicious irony is that having run such an inept campaign (on a par with May’s) the SNP enabled the Scots Tories to save the Conservative government. If the SNP had kept the 12 seats they lost to the Tories then Jeremy Corbyn would now be in power! Again what is remarkable here is the level of denial. Maintaining the hubris that caused so many to reject them (25% of their voters) they have been trying to tell the world that they actually won. Whilst technically they won the most seats in Scotland – 35 out of 59 – the reality of this election is that they lost 21 seats and came within a whisker (659 votes in total) of losing six more. The only people who believe that the SNP won are the believers who have become so used to accepting all HQ spin that if the Party declared Scotland was going to win the world cup, they would book the party celebrations! They remind me of O’Brien’s warning to Winston Smith in 1984 – “Whatever the Party holds to be truth is truth. It is impossible to see reality except by looking through the eyes of the party”.
4) Labour are celebrating a Loss
For the immediate future they are likely to be dominated by the ultra left group – Momentum. Corbyn, because of his excellent campaign, will remain leader. In the long run this is bad for the Labour party and bad for the country. We may at some point in the near future have to experience what a left-wing shambles is like in order to cure us of it! But thankfully we have been spared that just now. ‘People voted for Hope!’ tweeted Corbyn. Unless you are Jewish, Christian, or poor. Jeremy Corbyn voted to ‘make everyone a winner’. Another meaningless and vacuous soundbite. Students will be freed of the burden of tuition fees, fathers will see paternity pay double, railways and utilities will return to public ownership. The cost of nationalisation alone would be 237 billion or £8777 for every household.
Corbyn looked as though he was a winner – because of course in one sense he was – in that he did much better than anyone expected, and although Labour actually lost, he can claim victory whilst not having to implement any of the policies he had promised to if he had won! In that sense it is a win/win for him.
Meanwhile it is becoming evident Labour are no longer the party of the working class – but rather that of the young, the Islington sect and the social progressives on the Left. They are establishment politicians using the young as voting fodder.
5) Brexit will be harder
It should still happen (the anti Brexit party- the Lib Dems only got 12 seats and the SNP lost 21 of theirs), but the EU technocrats will make hay with the weaker UK government and will use its allies in the UK parliament to weaken the UK. We could end up paying a great price. But note Labour did well because 1/3 of UKIP voters switched to them – they will not tolerate Labour going soft on Brexit.
On the other hand the Establishment – Osbourne, Cameron, May, Sturgeon, Davidson and yes most of Labour under Corbyn – will do what they can to undermine Brexit. Did you notice something quite fascinating? During the campaign none of them talked about Brexit and then as soon as the results came out the political and media class suddenly announced it was all about Brexit! Who would have thought it – those voting for Labour were voting against what the commentariat call a ‘hard Brexit’ – which just means Brexit. EU Commissioners and the elite think that Corbyn will be a check on Brexit. Sturgeon says that Brexit should be delayed.
Ruth Davidson told Theresa May, according to the Telegraph ‘Rethink Hard Brexit because we could sink it’. Who are the ‘we’? Scottish Tory voters? Scottish Tory MPs? Are they all expected to fall in line with the wishes of Ruth? Who does she think she is? Sturgeon Mark 2? When will party political leaders get into their heads that most of us did not vote for them? We vote for the party, the local MP and the policies. The Scottish Conservative MPs are not Davidson’s and I assume that they have minds of their own. Thousands of SNP voters voted for the Conservatives precisely because they wanted Brexit. Davidson has no more right to assume that these votes were for her and her pro-EU position than Sturgeon had to assume that pro-EU voters meant they would vote for Indy Ref2.
The big aim is to weaken Brexit. And herein lies the warning for those of us who actually believe in democracy. The general election was not so much a return to two party politics – but rather it runs the danger of being a return to absolute elitist control. The popular rebellion that was Brexit could be snuffed out.
6) The Socially and Economically Liberal Elites see their opportunity to put the plebs in place
George Osbourne for example attacked Theresa May for trying to reach the working class. He wrote that the Conservative party should not try to win an election based on reaching the working class, the ‘left behind’ at the expense of the urban elites. Mind you he might have competition in that area. Labour actually won the richest and poshest constituency in the country – Kensington! This fact alone should cause people to stop and ponder whether the new Labour party is really for the poor.
It’s some combination – the Etonian old boys, the Lib Dems, ‘Civic Scotland’ and the Corbynistas – all acting as one. The last thing they want is ordinary people who disagree with them having a say. They are fundamentally anti-democratic and elitist. And authoritarian. There were some extraordinary scenes of Corbynistas going round and buying pro-Tory newspapers in order to burn them..
Brendan O’Neill rightly observed:
“This is a new low. Members of the Twitterati are boasting about buying up all the tabloids from their local newsagents and either binning them or burning them. Why? To protect the allegedly gullible plebs who read these papers from their anti-Labour editorials in the hope of stopping them from slavishly tramping to the polling station to vote Tory. They are using money and fire to try to deprive the lower orders of political reading material on Election Day. This is one of the foulest acts yet by the Twitterati. Hot tip: when you’re burning literature, you’ve lost the xxxxxx plot.” Brendan O’Neill
7) Post truth alternative facts are alive and well in the UK –
There have been many examples of this on all sides….but my favourite was Jeremy Corbyn’s tweet “It’s pretty obvious who won the election. We are ready to serve.” Yep…the Tories got the most seats and the most votes but Labour won and should form the government. That’s on the same level of fantasy as me claiming that when Dundee play Barcelona in the European Cup and we only lose 2:0 instead of the expected 10:0, we won and should be given the cup!
Another great example was Gina Miller, the self-appointed poster girl for the Remainers, telling us ‘that the people have spoken loud and clearly – they don’t want to leave the single market’. Strange but the Single Market was not on the ballot paper – and the parties who were committed in their manifestos to leaving it got 85% of the vote. But nonetheless in the alternative facts world of Gina – this is the people ‘clearly speaking against the Single Market’! I don’t know why we bother voting….we should just let Gina and her friends (George and Nicola and Nick —and don’t forget John Major) run the country for us….
8) The Young are not the New Radicals Ushering in a Brave New World
What about the young? Students? Are they the radical ones? The BBC love the idea.
No. They are the ultimate conformists. In a world where 93% of academics (other than in science) are progressive liberals – many of whom use their position to influence and indoctrinate – is it little wonder than an unthinking, uncritical generation just accepts what they are fed? This is not radicalism. It is the ultimate in conformism. I remember a meeting in the university of Abertay where one of the lecturers told me that she loved having me in to debate on euthanasia because they were a liberal university (a former technical college) where students would not normally hear other points of view! One student at that University told me that as a right-wing Trump supporter he was in a minority of one and regularly mocked and abused.
9) I am so thankful this morning that Christ is on the throne –
I read the day after the election, when all around seemed to be losing their heads – “Be cautious of paying too great a regard to persons and parties. One is your Master, even Christ. Stand fast in the liberty with which he has made you free; and, while you humbly endeavour to profit by all, do not resign your understanding to any, but to him who is the only wise God, the only effectual and infallible Teacher.” (John Newton).