From Covid to Russia, from Remoaners to the nasty EU… It’s never Brexit or it’s famously pig eared supporters, is it

By Daviemoo

The day I woke up and saw the result of the referendum I had a sinking feeling in my stomach. Some would say that I wasn’t being patriotic, wasn’t believing hard enough in Great Britain. But facts are stubborn little things, slithering their way through the shafts of what we once thought was Sunlight on the uplands. Brexiteers will do back breaking gymnastics to point the failure-finger at everything but their precious brexit. But some of us remember.

I knew sod all about economics in 2016. At the time I was under increasing mental strain: people in my family kept dying of cancer, my partner at the time was a horrendous person, my job in the NHS was plagued with the demands of managers put into their roles through nepotism. I’d been off work just over a month when the referendum happened: I was signed off with stress because I calmly explained that I was going to kill myself over a small slip up at work and to escape how horrible life was- so as you can imagine, I was not exactly in my right mind at the time.

But I do remember spending hours reading about trade, trade deals, EU/UK relations, market reliance, import export statistics, various EU laws that the UK both loved and hated according to Straight Banana enthusiast Boris De-Waffle Johnson. At one point I went out for some food with a friend who was an economist. We actually went out so I could talk to him about how depressed I was, but naturally the conversation tilted to the looming referendum. And his words about what would happen to the market have come true to the very letter. It was, in retrospect, a bit like sitting with Cassandra from the Greek tale, desperate and dire warnings which crashed around the ears of everyone to no avail.
But all of this meant that, despite feeling completely out of sorts at the time, I felt very clued up when I stepped into the empty primary school that was my local polling station to confidently say “of course, leaving the EU is a bad idea”. As I crossed that box I assumed others around me had done the same research, had come to the same obvious conclusions and were not buying into the happy fish cheaper mortgage better goods nonsense being pushed by government ministers who had one agenda: deregulation, less work for themselves.
I was wrong.

My local MP at the time was Jo Cox, who was a passionate campaigner for remaining in the EU. I was actually practically around the corner when she was murdered. The reason she died? The malignant, supremacist guff whose tendrils had spread murkily through the chatter around leaving, around stopping them nasty forriners comin ere an stealing are jobs. It’s that simple: she was murdered because of the blunt, ridiculous conclusions of a white supremacist racist whose grasp of economics extended no further than his nose and who believed that murder was a better expression of his discontent than discussion.
I thought of Jo too when I put a cross in that box. I knew she was right in her convictions, and I knew it was wrong for her to die for them but I felt it right to honour her sacrifice. To this day whenever I think of ardent brexiteers I remember they’re dangerous: that’s how far some of them went for this, ignoring the actions of a deluded extremist murderer. And how did the government at the time respond: Boris Johnson told MPs terrified by Cox’s murder that they needed to vote for Brexit to keep themselves safe… Remember that well used line from cheesy US action films? We don’t negotiate with terorrists? Johnson was actively encouraging fidelity to the wants and whims of an extremist to prevent more terror. I bet you won’t find that in any favourable coverage of him.

All of these things were not a culmination for me. The referendum, at the time, seemed immaterial in the pulsing flow that was my life. I wasn’t going to let a referendum about economics define me when everything else was so wrong, but it was also important to me. I was proud of our EU membership because it showed we were a nation happy to work together with our neighbours to achieve success. But as it went on, as I had accusations of betraying my country or not believing hard enough in the magic healing that would take place with the leave result, or as I saw sneering politicians like Jacob Rees-Mogg or whichever else they squeezed on tv to trot out lies about NHS funding or happy fish I got more and more annoyed. I was being told to ignore the research and expertise I’d worked on to believe Ben our local crazy and his idea that once we were free from the chains of the EU we’d all have a castle, a unicorn and our illusory freedom form bureaucracy.
How much shame I feel now, having watched our country’s petulant behaviour over the last 6 years.

The charitable part of me gives a grain of amusement to the passionate brexiteers whose unfailing defence of brexit never ceases to amaze. It’s not because of brexit, it’s… the nasty EU making it harder to leave, they’re punishing us!
Yes, naturally. They don’t want other member states to do it so of course they are going to make it difficult; that was one of the many deciding factors.
Well, yeah but… It’s about sovereignty isn’t it!
Ah yes. What has sovereignty brought us? A radical government incapable of balancing the books who stripped your protesting rights back, endorses pointless legislation against voter fraud- essentially the US’ voter disenfranchisement laws copy pasted for the UK, and economic backslide so harsh that the UK is like an elevator with its wires cut screaming down the shaft to the basement as other economies overtake us: not because they’re good. Because we’re bad.
OK but what about covid then!
Well, about that. Covid has certainly contributed, there’s no denying that: it’s obvious. But you seem to be overlooking the fact that the EU offered a mid-term extension to the brexit window which Johnson and his cupboard of morons turned down. And whilst covid has indeed damaged the economy, factually, reporting shows that brexit has been worse for the economy on its own than covid was or would have been.
…Well, it… it’s the war in Ukraine then!
Nope. Again, all of this was predicted by knowledgeable economic forecast.

Here’s the thing. Economic forecasts can vastly differ depending on the pessimism of the economists conducting them. Think of it like going fishing on a lake. On a sunny, warm day with the right gear, the right lures, a flask of nice strong coffee and having long experience of how to fish the waters, the chances of you getting a good haul are pretty high. On a rainy day with a stick and some string and a hook fashioned from one of Boris Johnson’s eyebrow hairs you’re probably not coming home with a bounty.
Economists who were pro brexit were operating on the idea that everything would go our way, that the EU would capitulate and/or be friendly and a myriad other things that didn’t happen.
But the big difference is, economists whose forecasts looked bad were this terrible, inescapable thing: realistic.

Every single thing brexit was meant to give was a lie.
Freedom from EU bureaucracy. We still have to trade with them so, you’ve actually got more paperwork now.
Cheaper prices. Everything is more expensive both at retail price and for import.
Cheaper mortgages. Hahaha.
The chance for US to make decisions about our OWN laws! I attended 17 protests featuring thousands of people about voter ID, about the police, crime, sentencing and courts bill and they still passed, I’ve signed at least 30 petitions calling for everything from benefit reassessment for the poorest to windfall taxes to early elections- all ignored.
Every single promise a twisted straw mat of lies, beckoned over by Nigel Farage who promised it was a king size mattress.

Brexit was never going to do well, and maybe its impact wouldn’t have been so gargantuan if we didn’t have 145 crises all kicking off at once, now with Liz Truss picking up a shovel to heap more on top of us- but it is now an abject disaster. And I’ve noticed a trend with brexit conservative types. It’s always the “imagine the for instances that’d be much worse!!”
“Imagine if Jezebel Cranglin had gotten in, we’d have empty she… I mean, the pound would be worth nothi- we, I mean… we could be at WAR…oh I…”.
Or of course the “but imagine if these things HADN’T happened!”
“Well yes BUT if covid hadn’t happened we’d be FINE”.
These people live in their own imagination constantly, in a world where the bad stuff didn’t happen and the good stuff did- I invite them out of their own heads to observe reality.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m a maladaptive daydreamer who spends my time in a fantasy world when I’m not working. We don’t live in a world where Corbyn won, we don’t live in a world without covid or war or whatever else you want to sling blame at. So I ask you brexit enthusiasts to STOP living in your imagination, fun as it is. You imagined your way to sunlit uplands and ended up with human offal floating in your rivers. You imagined a nightmare scenario with Corbyn at the helm and yet every example of how that would have been bad is happening, and you imagined brexit would have been a rip roaring success in a world where exactly what’s happened didn’t happen.

The fact is, we’re all inconceivably small. Tiny people, less than cogs in a huge machine rolling around trying to reach equilibrium and the referendum presented a chance to change this. Finally, we little people could have a say about the direction of the machine! We could change our very destiny! And so many people fixated on the EU as the cause of all their problems! It’s the EU’s fault my job doesn’t pay well, it’s the EU’s fault my business is failing! It’s the EU’s fault that Sarah my wife caught me cheating and kicked me out, please let me back in Sarah I just want my cufflinks… And they grasped that sad conclusion with all their might! They stuck both fingers up at the EU. Defining their entire life around putting a pencil x in a box. The biggest decision in their lives, and it’s been a wash. No wonder brexiteers are so strident in their defence of it: it was their one chance to improve their lives and they fucked it by choosing the options smarter people told them not to. Brexit is the equivalent of a toddler grabbing a hot pan and then yelling at their brother, who stood there telling them not to the whole time. SHUT UP TIMMY, WHY DIDN’T YOU STOP ME. We did try of course, but then you get told freedom of speech, that they’re tired of experts. BREAKING NEWS: Cutting your nose off to spite your face quite painful actually- more at 11.

So to brexiteers across the land I have some sage advice: get real. Wake up. Stop living in a fantasy world where you blame “remoaners” or “socialists” or “the nasty EU”, or Covid or political correctness gone mad or war… and start blaming brexit. It wasn’t the brexit you wanted, right? The brexit you wanted was in your imagination: what you wanted was for your life to improve and you’ve voted against that consistently for years.
So just for good measure, for me, for my own mental health- start taking some of the blame yourselves. You were warned.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

“God (that you don’t believe in) save the King (that you don’t support) in helping the Government (that 56% of you didn’t vote for)”

By Daviemoo

Truss has had months to prepare for recession, the energy crisis, the cost of living crisis and any other issues headed our way. But empty pageantry, infighting and a desperation to squeeze her neck into the leash of “the donors” has led us to where we always knew we would be- rule by a party who looks after the rich on the credit card of the poor. The hypocrisy is layered deep in the UK status quo: but what is true patriotism if not the antithesis of what we are fed by media and deranged thoughtless reactionaries, and how do we seize this true patriotism, pass it through the bars of our prison and lead ourselves through revolution into the UK we need- not the UK we have?

Governmental ineptitude at your expense

Liz Truss has never met a moral she can’t ignore. From a republican to speaking at the Queen’s funeral, Lib Dem to leader of the Conservative party and from staunch remainer to helming a country so battered by the trifecta of Brexit, Covid and lacklustre leadership we’re slipping past some eurozone countries in regards to quality of living. Truss has already demonstrated clearly to us that she intends to do nothing to assist in the living conditions of the downtrodden but will pull out all the stops to bolster the supports holding we, the underclass, under our supposed betters.

Unfortunately for Ms. Truss, that nebulous descriptor, “poor” continues to expand, as more British households slip into poorness, poverty and desperation due to the economic malfunctions of a government long off the rails. Truss has created an energy plan that pushes the crisis further down the ways, all (naturally) to the expense of the British tax payer. Her economic taxation will save the poorest households less than one pound a month, whilst benefitting the already wealthy: but did we honestly expect some subversion of the Truss we’ve always seen when she has so readily shown us who she is and how she acts so many times before?
She describes herself as a “no nonsense northern straight talker”. One suspects that a no nonsense straight talker would have told the companies that have turned unfathomable profit into CEO salary instead of investment into green energy, onshore wind farms, more efficient forms of energy capture- that these failures couldn’t stand, and would have begun implementing hefty reforms on the businesses operating here.
Truss eats out of the hands of these companies not just because she used to be in the upper echelon of Shell, but because these companies throw money at her party in return for their servile response to this energy crisis. It’s like asking your boss to tell the CEO to close their office door when they’re insulting the HR team: it won’t happen.

One must remember that the conservatives who have been in power for almost 13 years have faced a steady stream of reminders from a nonpartisan group of government ministers since 2012 that an energy crisis was looming because the UK had no onshore infrastructure which needed to be addressed: was it? Absolutely not- the flat ignoring of this long-looming crisis has meant that energy infrastructure actually plateaued, with only minor changes made, surface changes which impacted nothing. Additionally, the installation of Truss who is apparently moved to the approximation of teary eyes by seeing solar panels has meant that any government schemes to incentivise businesses to pursue green energy infrastructure are dead in the water- water that is now being filled with sewage, because of course it is.

Broader than this though, the cost of living crisis hangs over us like the clouds we Brits are so used to. And what are the government doing to ensure that we don’t drown in debt just so we can purchase butter for our crumpets? Why, making sure that bankers’ earning potential is uncapped of course!

If the almost immediate move to deregulate bankers bonuses did not plainly show where this government’s interests lie, what does? I, and I’m sure most people reading this, don’t care about bankers bonuses in any way more than wondering why they can have unlimited earning potential when we have empirical evidence of how badly that works for the economy: I give it less than a decade until a harangued and as yet faceless PM (it won’t be Truss) pops up on tv to tell us that we’re not only giving energy companies our money to float their businesses but we’re going to do the merry go round of paying bankers another set of bailouts.

But isn’t this all just the milieu of Britishness now? It feels like we’re a nation of the abused, sat stirring a cup of tea quietly, terrified that we might accidentally tap the side of the cup with the spoon and bring down on us the ire of our betters, be they crown wearing, crown serving or supposedly the businesses that work for us. It won’t be long until the UK’s energy companies take the line of South Africa’s main energy supplier, “load shedding” IE shutting down the national grid for hours at a time whilst admonishing us silly, selfish proles for daring to use the energy that we literally pay for.

And as if having a government of openly hostile, privately-but-not-well-educated bad faithers strutting the halls of our parliament wasn’t bad enough, watching the collective St Vitas’ Dance madness unfold around the death of Queen Elizabeth has been absolutely flabbergasting. However you feel about the royals, and you have a right to feel however you want, the reaction from the British working class has been galling to the point of making me wonder if I should simply delete my social media, the blog, the podcast and just give it up as a bad job. From people wearing cardigans daubed with union jacks saying that “proper British” people accept “the way of things” to watching working class people confirm that yes people SHOULD be arrested and in fact should go to PRISON for being critical of the monarchy, I’ve sworn at my various screens more times in the last month than in the last 6 combined, and that’s quite a feat considering Johnson was still our PM a few months ago.

British people are suffering from a collective Stockholm syndrome. Ruled over by hopelessly distant elites who use their paid shills to tell us over and over that we want it to be like this: innumerable people fit into the openly visible underclass of the UK. We’ll soon have no working time directive to protect us from unreasonable demands from our workplaces, implanted no less by a government who partied during the biggest health crisis the UK has seen in over 100 years, had 3.5 months in meltdown, came back for a week, took 10 days off for the death of the monarch, will go back for 2 days, then will be off until OCTOBER- but don’t forget, little workers, you’re amongst the laziest people Dominic Raab AND our new PM Liz Truss has ever seen. Truss made this comparison against China, and the reason we may be lazier than Chinese workers is probably because in China an errant word against the government can have you arrested. Just a thought.
Moving to the royals: the mere acceptance of a monarchy is to accept that there are greater and lesser humans. To believe that a god chose and beatified a human to raise a lineage of those with inconceivable wealth and power to rule over a land, free of election, free of discussion. The UK collectively allows itself to be held prisoner- and why? Because of the most infuriating adage in the British language: “we’ve always done it that way”. Tradition does not obfuscate the need to question whether, at the start of a cost of living crisis announcement, we watched our now king sit atop a golden throne next to a stolen jewel worth millions in a palace worth hundreds of millions as he told us we were in for a difficult time. If people feel so collectively strongly about the monarchy, put it to a vote! Why are you afraid of reaffirming the nation wants a monarch? And why, in particular, are you afraid of people like me? It’s not like I’ve made a habit of being on the winning side is it? I backed Corbyn, I voted against Brexit, I called for an election when Johnson was finally put to the governmental sword… I’m sure we’d vote overwhelmingly to keep the monarchy but at least we were asked.

Apparently patriotic behaviour is accepting the collective delusion of a nation filled with people who, a year ago, swore that wearing a mask for 37 seconds to buy a 20 pack of Marlboro lights was the equivalent of the subversion of bodily autonomy suddenly deciding that it’s ok to tase people who aren’t openly weeping about the death of a total stranger.

But what IS patriotism?


Patriotism is, shockingly, not the concept that we must unblinkingly accept the foetid corruption of a government determined to undermine those who disagree with it, by stripping back the right to protest. Patriotism isn’t being forced by violence and with threats of police retribution to suddenly give fealty to a man who was hated for his mistreatment of his wife when I was ten years old. Patriotism is not waving union jacks in the streets of a country failing it’s citizens so badly that we went from 35 Trussell Trust food banks in 2010 to having 11,650 by 2020. Patriotism is not the calm and certain acceptance that people awaiting cancer treatment were at risk of, and in fact suffering from, the loss of their booked appointment because of a funeral, a funeral which you were compelled like worker ants to imbibe by the removal of any other avenue instead: shops shut, gyms shut, libraries, museums shut… you will mourn: or else.

Layer upon layer of injustice is spread like a permafrost across the UK: a government who continually prioritises the rich few over the poor many, and then with no hint of irony talks about not pandering to minorities… A media who blithely behaves to the antithesis of how media should act, ratifying the lies and missteps of the government, the police, the royals – its own self…

The UK has fallen so far from where I hoped it would be. And yet I, we, fight on. We endure the insults, the degradation, the threats and the infighting, we read and write about how things can be, could be, should be, will be better for people who go out of their way to insult and malign us. We steel ourselves for abuse every time we press “send” on a message- but why? Because despite it all the gossamer thin but steel strong strands of hope run through us: hope that we can reach someone out there who feels similarly and make them keep fighting. Hope that we can reaffirm those beaten down by these injustices that things can and will be better. Hope that those disaffected by the nonsense and noise will rise up with us and fight to improve the status quo.
That- this- these actions, this is patriotism. It’s not the gormless acceptance of a country and state that have failed us for so long in so many ways, it’s the razor sharp and endless conviction that we can, that we will win and that in this victory we will seek a better country and a better future for ourselves and even for those who may not deserve it after aligning themselves with the forces who worked to derail this change.

I know- not think, I know that we can make a difference. That we can change the direction we’re headed. But all hands on deck, people. Things aren’t working, things aren’t improving because not enough of us are willing to throw our weight into it. The tories call us lazy, but laziness is letting the country sink. So gird your loins, wrap your hands in the work ahead and repeat this phrase that I have imbibed on my heart

We Deserve Better.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

The Stupidification of Brits

By Daviemoo

As the Conservatives push hard to renationalise imperial measures, something we’ve always had on our food packaging my entire life as an ostensible “brexit benefit” that doesn’t directly revolve around-but will likely contribute to – a poorer economy, one must wonder how it is not obvious that the party is trying to contribute to an overall shift away from the rest of the world: Little Britain will be unable to sell goods to a market that doesn’t understand the measures, or that has to do extra work to do so. But this isn’t the only way the tories are working to Break down Brits…

Imperial Measurements- an exercise in futility- Boris Johnson

Imperial units seem like some kitschy reach back into the not so distant past- some little move towards showing the world we don’t need them because we have our own way of weighing corn and meat… not one person who isn’t desperate to return to the smoky pubs and “it’s ‘ow we’ve always done it” rhetoric of the past is particularly interested in starting to use imperial measurements again, because it is of no benefit to anyone who doesn’t regularly start sentences with “back in my day…”

Imperial measurements will make it more difficult to:
-Sell to other countries
-Cook
-Purchase necessary products and ingredients

It was also never “banned” by the EU, but to fit their standardisation model it was vital that we all used the same measurements- products in the UK have always been allowed to display imperial, just not as prominently as the other units.

So why would we do it? Because as always it pleases that tiny base who will thoughtlessly back the tories specifically because of nonsensical moves like this. Looking at the outlook of those who approve of this, they don’t care about the realistic damage and annoyance this move will cause now- but you can guarantee that they will be the loudest to decry it as soon as they experience issues resulting from it.
As we fall into measuring things here, we will lose step with the rest of the world- the pointlessness of making our coexistence harder rankles, but also fits perfectly well with the desired outcome of those in charge of implementing brexit: what seemed like a silly little brag fits in with the theme of isolationism behind brexit. Measures, money… what next?

The curtailing of university entry- Nadhim Zahawi

Recently it was announced that if you do not score certain fundamental grades, student loans will not be on offer, effectively curtailing university for those who fail to achieve in the earlier exams. This is a disaster both in terms of the hangover from coronavirus which adversely affected hundreds of thousands of peoples’ education, but is also- and there is no sensitive way to write this- a stupid idea.
I’ve written extensively about the myriad different learning styles for human beings, whether that’s an ability to absorb through physical action, reading, listening, watching demos and more- denying someone access to higher education simply because they cannot conform to the archaic system of listen, repeat in a slightly different way on a written exam is a disastrous response to the educational future of the UK. People can excel at university when given access to the right learning resources, teachers and allowed to study a passion subject instead the usual proscriptions of subjects given at a young age- and even if someone goes on to work in a completely different field, the ability to obtain a degree, masters or PHD is a vital skill that should be exercised for those who can – and want to.

Zahawi’s zest for preventing students who don’t excel at exams from reaching new chances of education is a transparent attempt to gatekeep knowledge from those who need it most desperately- and he should be looked upon with shame for this transparently reductive action.

Additionally, the spectre of “left wing censorship” and deeply worrying authoritarian moves to combat this nebulous nonsense has always been touted over university: searching student forums shows right wing students asking whether they will fit in- rather than simply acknowledging that their views, as all views are, will be questioned, it’s an immediate self censorship and a lack of understanding that an exposure to a wide range of people around you is likely to change your narrow views to wider ones: university isn’t a factory for spitting out left wing Leninists, they are buildings filled with knowledge, and intersected by tens of thousands of people you may not have met and learnt from before: you are not being converted, you’re learning other people’s lifestyles and exposure to this is the antithesis of reductive rhetoric.

Other tory ministers state that children should be asked to sing unsettling nationalistic anthems in schools– we truly are allowing steps towards childhood indoctrination to nationalism.

Throttling the media- Nadine Dorries

Despite 96% of respondents saying they wanted channel 4’s funding model to remain the same and a wealth of evidence presented that C4 is doing well in it’s monetary goals, Dorries has stated that the government will take steps towards its’ privatisation. Dorries has repeatedly demonstrated that she doesn’t know or understand- nor despite time and prompts, care to learn, how channels in the UK are funded (she has also wrongly stated information about the BBC, ITV and channel 4’s several messups). Dorries has stated channel 4 hasn’t “helped its case” against privatisation when “one of its lead presenters is shouting fuck the tories at a concert”. That would be a sentence in and of itself enough to sink any other culture ministers as blatantly taking revenge on a channel for a presenter not slavishly worshipping the government but Dorries is too busy making raps on tiktok to feel the shame she would if she viewed herself as a huge majority of the UK view her.

But the media also does the tories job for them- all of the big newspapers lean right, from the Daily Mail and its endless campaign to blame “lefty do gooder lawyers” for everything, the Express and its attempts to copy headlines that sound similar to those written in North Korea about their own “dear leader”. Other papers are too busy trying to scratch at culture war to make sales by punching down on minorities or both sides-ing debates which are patently pointless or a nonissue. Those media that do speak truth to power are often small or sat on, or- as we saw recently with Cummings’ admissions about the Johnson administration “throwing bungs” to right wing media whilst ignoring left wing or smaller media outlets, underfunded into oblivion.

Social media has seen an uptick in the amount of people desperate to speak truth to power there- its how I have come to what little prominence I have because the only place you can speak about the disgusting state of the country with little intervention (though lots of hate mail, the odd death threat and a sprinkle of doxxing) is social media.

The only way through this mire is a multi pronged attack. Social media is hugely influential when it comes to allowing the voices of ordinary people to be uplifted above the proscripted dross of the mainstream media- a phrase I hate but will indulge in here, but large scale organisation and a flat refusal to allow the government to pass damaging legislation must also start to take place. Fighting back against tory policy must take place both in cyberspace and in the real world – lobbying the government is ineffective right now, but we cannot stop and must in fact increase our efforts to battle them in the real world including against the frightening anti protest legislation they have inducted.

They will not stop us. We are many- and there are more of us than we think. Though decades of tory policy have enforced a miasma of glibly disenfranchised brits, people can be reached with the right message -we must find this message and galvanise those who would not normally move to counter this fight. We must- for without the voices of the discontented rising in concert, the zombie moans of a nation whose freedom is dead will only grow to silence us all.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

It Is Our Duty To Stand Against Fascism

By Jack Meredith- @politicalwelshy

“We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other’s happiness – not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world, there is room for everyone. And the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way”

~ Charlie Chaplin, from “The Great Dictator”, 1940.

This was Chaplin’s first speaking role, after years of being a silent movie star. It focuses on the plight of the Jewish people in the face of fascism, with a fascist regime headed up by Hynkel, the leader of the fictional land of Tomainia. The premise for the majority highlights the humanity of the Jewish people, compared to the buffoonery and selfishness of the ruling fascists.

The film’s closing speech, partly quoted above is regarded as one of the best speeches in film history, a call for peace and anti-fascism at a time when fascism was rife across Europe.

It is a shame, then, that this speech is more applicable to the modern-day UK than ever.

SNP MP Mhairi Black recently spoke in parliament, where she stated that we must be aware of the country’s move towards “the f-word” – fascism.

I am inclined to agree:

  • Asylum seekers are being deported to Rwanda. The Human Rights Act is set to be scrapped. The rights to freely vote and protest have been infringed. 
  • DWP civil servants have been given police-like powers to deliver fines upon suspected benefit cheats, no matter whether the person in question has been found to break the law. 
  • The electoral commission is no longer independent and will be brought under government control. 
  • Trans people are not protected under the conversion therapy ban. 
  • The Prime Minister, despite having broken the law during the Covid lockdown period, remains in power. 
  • The Culture Secretary is selling-off Channel 4, on the grounds of “being too high a cost for the taxpayer”, despite not knowing that Channel 4 doesn’t receive public funding. 
  • The Home Secretary wants to reform the Official Secrets Act, to imprison journalists for up to 14 years for “embarrassing the government”.

These only cover some of the worrying decisions made by the current Conservative government – this rap sheet can stretch back 12 years.

I would disagree with Mhairi Black on one point though: we are not sleepwalking into fascism. We are welcoming it with open arms.

Whenever we say “never again”, we are supposed to mean it. 

Instead, it’s become a meaningless phrase that we throw about on social media, along with a load of hashtags that are only included to differentiate ourselves as “one of the good ones”.

It is our duty to stand against fascism.

Let’s do it.

Neutering the ministerial code was not a shot across the bow- it was a declaration of war

By Daviemoo

In 1992, the ministerial code was formally introduced for the purposes of balancing the highest level of government against the accountability and standards expected of those capable of doing the job. Every company, organisation and group has its code of conduct, and if you are unable to meet these high standards you’re likely to lose your seat at the table.
Under a leader too weak, corrupt and lazy to hold his ministers- and himself- to the quality we should expect the UK is set to sink beneath what the government can muster themselves to do: not what they must do for the
good of us all.

In every iteration of the ministerial code, themes have run concurrent: honesty and integrity. Transparency has always been absent- but when you imagine the weight of some of the information that passes through the office of the prime minister that suddenly seems acceptable. We don’t ask for every last nuance of political upheaval to be hauled before the masses and nor should we: but politicians have slowly become masters of extrapolating not telling the truth with lying and with building a bonfire of integrity, edging closer and closer to the fuse, all the while assuring us that we could expect the required & requested levels of the opposite from them.

The fact that it took until 1992 to introduce a code of conduct amongst politicians should have been the first alarm that something was not all well in British democratic discourse, and even having a code or a constitution doesn’t prevent political meddling: looking briefly to the shores of America we see the desperate thrashing of the left against the ever increasing radical right- no constitution prevented an attempted Coup in January 2021. These tenets are as tall as the clouds; but as wide as a strand of hair- though you can’t directly progress forward, it’s easy to step around should you be motivated to do so, and one could not ever accuse Johnson and his cohort of lacking motivation to circumvent vital scrutiny- we’ve read alarming tales of their fervour for being able to overturn judicial decisions, we saw them drop the reformations asked for out of the paterson scandal, they stripped back our right to voice displeasure through protest, they tell us to hold them to account at the voting booth whilst making that more difficult, they allegedly pay “bungs” to newspapers to report, or not report, what they need in the press.
Looking at this behaviour the idea that democracy and justice were a bulwark of protection becomes as fantasist as it is: all we have ever had to hold our upper echelon to account is the promise that they would adhere to this code and anything beyond that is illusory- so – every last one of us must stop expecting this low standard. If we cannot expect honesty of them we must demand it.

Johnson’s desperation to obscure his actions from vital scrutiny point to the idea that he must alter the very fundamentals of what scrutiny he is allowed to endure is a tacit admission that he cannot rise to the heights a prime minister must reach- instead he seeks to lower the bar so he can clear it and with that action he does not even ask the people our thoughts, he tells us that he knows best and we must sit back and watch- with the air of the misogynist husband who tells his angry wife to calm down, Johnson has put his finger to the lip of the nation in our fury, in our confusion and in our resistance, and shushed us: are we truly the nation who would take this slight?

The exsanguination of truthfulness

Honesty is a necessary part of the office of the prime minister, and something we could argue that many prime ministers long before the era of the Johnsonites has failed us on. Blair blustered us into Iraq, Cameron ran a referendum on EU membership to stop some of his MPs defecting to UKIP, selling it as a decision the people deserved to make when it was merely his attempt to wrench power back. May, a staunch remainer, flailed against the EU fruitlessly for months because she believed it was wrong to do what she was hired to do and she was deposed for it, all the while slated in the media as the lacklustre PM who was letting us all down even as she kept on top of other domestic affairs outside of Brexit: ultimately, her lack of fervour for the destruction of our relationship with the rest of the EU was her pyre – all of these events were a precursor to the level of dishonesty we now take as tacit from the office of the prime minister.
There is a method of torture known as death by 1000 cuts which is exactly what it reads as- a slow death, a shallow slash at a time. The person cannot escape and slowly, slowly, their blood drains until their body can be sustained no more. We were slowly bleeding from 900 wounds before Johnson’s government’s premiership- then he emerged and delivered the last 100 blows in quick succession.
If the lifeblood of a truly free country is truth, only an infusion could save us now- but the ambulance is in a nine hour queue to a hospital fit to burst with backlogged patients: will we survive this haemorrhage? Just like any wound, the longer we bleed, the less that is likely.

Dishonesty has, as we well know, dogged Johnson’s career as he has tumbled from vexatious attempts at literacy to being the laughing stock of a Brussels politician and somehow found the tenacity to scramble his way, always on the backs of those more talented and clever, to the office of the prime minister of the United Kingdom. So lacking in talent is Johnson that he may be the prime minister who initiated the deconstruction of the United Kingdom. Soon he will be the man who rules over a country who despises him, not the leader who unites several nations- all because he lacks the modesty to follow the true will of the people. It is easier for Johnson to feed the press machine that brought him to prominence and that he uses as a shaking podium, asking them to constantly press forward the storyline that everyone loves his caddish brand of politics and then to simply place his fingers in his ears and scream a bastardised version of the national anthem- as always backed up by his baying choir, the front bench MPs. Even as a huge proportion of the nation quakes in unleashed rage against the entirety of the administration, they continue to tell us collectively that we must move on from their betrayal: that is precisely what we must never do, for they will never dictate to us where we stand, why we kneel- or why we fight.

Integrity- democracy- illusory

One may have always disliked the politics of the conservatives. That is, of course, understandable- their politics was, and is not, for many. But one could never accuse them of the unparalleled heights of hypocrisy plain to see now. Years ago, an illicit affair would be enough to dismantle a politicians career and paint the entire party with the deep stain of shame- but politics has been gamified by a media that must exist by pushing salaciousness as our bread and butter.
The public love scandal- and politicians have been all too eager to give in, to align with a media who publicises every tawdry detail and as we have watched, agog, politicians have gone from the best amongst us, the smartest and most moral amongst us to affair having, children starving, fat shaming, law breakers- even now, the reports of the Sue Gray report contain a barely concealed glee that politicians drank, fought and had sex behind the black door of number 10 which Starmer recently rightly called a representation of our democracy. Integrity was not just respected, expected- it was required.
Thatcher never recovered from the lies she told as PM, nor did Blair- and rightly so. Their legacy is written against the lies they told- but Johnson? His legacy IS the lies he has told, for it is all he has done- from the moment he was placed in office he has plied the public with so much dishonesty, rhetoric, obfuscation and technicality that we can no longer discern- or rather, we don’t know where to focus on to find the truth for everywhere you turn is a lie.

The issue with fighting this level of political dishonesty is simple to explain, and can be applied to everything from brexit to election promises to the daily besmirching of the people’s office.
The truth is a stubborn thing, as unchangeable as bedrock because it is, and it exists only as itself- it cannot change; you can put a coat of paint on the truth but it will always still be the truth.
A lie can be anything you want: if you can lie with an air of plausibility you can sell almost anything- let us take brexit as an example- take a peoples who have suffered under austerity for several years and use media to repeatedly push the idea that you are poor, your mortgage is expensive, your roads bad quality, your food expensive because of your EU membership (see the stupidity of straight bananas) and suddenly you have people desperate for a brexit that doesn’t benefit them- but of course, many will see through this, so then you bring in the rear guard on a different line of attack- anyone who still wants to stay in the EU is a traitor, doesn’t believe in the UK. Not only do you forment the blaming of the EU for people’s poorer lives but the very idea of questioning that makes you a traitor. Add to this a deepening sense of the nationalism that tells you two contradictions: Britain first, British people are better and Britain is the best it can get- and people who want better for Britain through any means other than waving its flag and declaring its wonders are traitors.

The problem we face is thus: all we ever had to fight back against governmental malice was the hope that they were the best of us: now we know better than ever that this is not the case- but what will we do about it? Starmer continues to try to assail Johnson using the rules he has already gleefully destroyed, so how could this ever work? We must change tactic- but here, my thoughts run out of steam. I am simply not smart enough to articulate the next move, and I don’t know it. Starmer’s advisors are old guard labour members, active since the 70s, 80s, 90s and they too cling to the idea that the archaic modus operandi can hold Johnson et al to scrutiny. They will fail -so we must shift attack. But how? What do we do? Let us not forget that shame, contrition and genuine remorse were the weapons we wielded in the past against governmental malfeasance. This government does not, can not- will not, feel the sting of these weapons. So what weapons will penetrate their hide: how do we re-arm ourselves and win the battle they have dragged us into?

Currently, a worrying proportion of the American further and far right are floating the idea that they will provoke a civil war against the left- and as they are the side who wholeheartedly back a lack of gun control, they truly believe it is a war they will win.
Guns are weapons- and so is knowledge, and both can be wielded to wreak havoc, but only one can truly be wielded for good. So how do we harness the capability of knowledge, weaponise it to turn the tide of this war we find ourselves in?
Only those in charge may tell- but tell they must, and soon or dire consequence will befall us- not may, but will. Knowledge cannot deflect gunfire, so we must start our deployment now, and fight back against the ignorance that will lead to it: not just in the US, but in the UK- in all the countries who claim democracy, yet only hold their leaders to the standards they can be bothered to uphold. The deepening storyline that the left want to take away freedoms even as the right does so, that the left want to force you into a body you don’t want as the right force you to carry pregnancies you don’t want, that the left want to censor speech as the right ban books about LGBT+ people or flatly refuse to report on governmental failure, that the left want to come after your children as prominent right wing politicians both here and in the US are jailed or investigated for child sex offences- somehow we must break through this cloud of hypocritical disinformation and expose the depths of right wing political corrosion to people willing to prop up governments who hurt them all to fight back against an enemy who doesn’t exist- of course, amongst right wing supporters are those who know the truth and don’t care, or know the truth but want it to be this way, but amongst them are those whose eyes can be opened to the simple fact that this polemical politics poisons them against those who want honestly what is best for all of us.

If we can reach those on the right who have been consumed by this saturation of us vs them narrative, I have hope that the real enemies of truth, those who must rely on diversion over talent will become clear to them, and we can add them to our side.

At least once a week, I write that we deserve better in the UK: we deserve better from all of our governments- but we don’t just deserve better, we need better and without it we face a dark and uncertain future, where the meeting of the lowest standards is not only acceptable- it is applauded. This is Johnson’s legacy- the 8 feet under lowering of societal standards, integrity, honesty, freedom, and on the tombstone shall be carved “here lies the UK- we could have done better- but we didn’t”.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

Evil Triumphs as the Good Do Nothing

By Jack Meredith @PoliticalWelshy

It is quite apt that this piece’s title is a paraphrased quote from Edmund Burke, often regarded as the philosophical founder of conservatism.
Remaining silent at a time when truth to power must be spoken is often the catalyst for corruption to take hold, embed its toxic roots and create something so diabolical. 

In the context of an institution, it can have the knock-on effect of keeping the silent in an uneasy state of complicity – speak up, and risk losing everything you have garnered so far, damn yourself while also acknowledging that you benefited from the corruption. Stay silent, condemn others to the corruption, and allow its toxic roots to strengthen and grow until they can no longer be removed without doing away with the institution entirely.

And this is why it is so apt to reference Burke; this is the situation Conservative MPs find themselves in.

It has no lie that the Conservative Party has placed many of its electoral hopes upon the character that Johnson portrays. To many across the country, he isn’t Johnson, Mr Johnson or Prime Minister – he is “Boris”. He created an “every-man” figure that relates to the common person in the street (despite having studied in Eton and lived a life none of us could ever imagine!).

It seemed like a great idea at first; pinning their hopes upon “Boris” won them a landslide in the 2019 election, helped them convince the British people that they could “get Brexit done” and had the power to vote through whatever legislation they wanted.

And then, as it goes with every tale too good to be true, reality hit hard.

He is currently overseeing a cost of living crisis, with the options to implement a windfall tax and cut VAT to lessen the impact on citizens being rejected – by himself and his government. Asylum seekers arriving in Britain are being sent to Rwanda. The right to freely vote and the right to protest are being infringed upon. Inflation has hit a 40-year high, reaching 9%. The “oven-ready deal” Johnson promised on Brexit had expired, with the plan to rewrite the Northern Ireland Protocol rejected by both the EU and US. 

And, of course, he is the first sitting Prime Minister to have broken the law. This is a fact that no matter how much Boris Johnson would like to brush under the carpet, isn’t going away anytime soon.

While so many sacrificed seeing loved ones, some for the last time, Johnson broke lockdown rules and held illegal parties in 10 Downing Street.

What has been the response from MPs, to everything that has so far transpired? Have they held a vote of no confidence, kicked Johnson and his allies out of the party and reformed top-to-bottom? 

Not quite…

A flurry of “no confidence” letters here, the occasional television interview calling on Johnson to resign there – but no action. The threshold needed to trigger a vote of no confidence has yet to be met, and the MPs that make their grievances public continue to serve under the Prime Minister.

They stay quiet, while evil triumphs.

Jack Meredith is a prominent political activist found on twitter, tiktok and often writing for the Lib Dem Voices- his social media is linked at the top of the article.

Until Johnson is gone the UK has no hope of democracy

As Boris Johnson’s fist tightens around the throat of democracy, one has to ask: will he jump or be pushed, and will we be gathered around the coffin of our long standing governance before long… or can we resuscitate the UK’s political sphere into something recognisable when he goes?

Many scholars who study authoritarian regimes have spoken out about commonalities between the conservative government and more radical and open authoritarian governments across the world: one of the keenest scholars of authoritarian legislature is known as OpenBookshelf on several social media platforms, and I recently invited her to speak with me about authoritarianism. 

The meat of our conversation focused around the subversion of any attempt at democratic discourse under the Johnson regime- from the effective illegalisation of protest to seeking to overrule judicial decisions, effectively giving the government unilateral powers of censure: these are tools of truly toothless governments seeking to solidify support under the silence of the oppressed. 

Johnson’s cabal embodies the antithesis of “the other”: rich (but not all rich), white (but not all white), brash (but not all brash). It is a cabinet that personifies the worst aspects of the British public and seems to work to the destruction of the offices they helm, all the way from a home secretary whose parents naturalised and who harbours what seems to be a sociopathic distaste for people who come from overseas (all legally, as there is no illegal way to seek refuge…), a simpering culture minister who did not know that the de facto video hosting site for everything from politics to cookery to DIY, YouTube, was being “used by young people to learn things”a chancellor of the exchequer who has been overseeing the rules that allowed his wife to pay less tax than she was due to pay in the UK and refuses to clarify whether he too is a benefactor. 

But the rot which corrodes the front of the house extends further, sinuous tendrils working its way through tories who accuse their constituents of “selling school meal vouchers to brothels and crack dens” or who blithely accuse doctors, nurses and teachers of flouting lockdown rules like Johnson so confidently has done. 

The problem with this cultish populist government, if you’d like to pick one specific problem, is that this acidification of the pillars of democracy will lead to a fatal erosion: and what will be left when the corinthian columns of freedom no longer exist?

Well, to fret over that, one has to believe they do still exist and I, for one, do not.

In a democracy, a government who obtained 44% of the vote overall would not be in power with a huge majority: the tories spent more time splitting the left vote with endless smears of a fairly decent politician in Corbyn, promising empty shelves (as they delivered not once but twice during the pandemic) and escalated bills and taxes (as they have now provided so expertly). But Corbyn’s labour had it’s own myriad problems from upheld claims of anti jewish sentiment to internal saboteurs, and the left vote was split so widely that we have this watered down opposition bench and a furious SNP desperate to extricate itself from English politics and be done with Westminster once and for all- however you may feel about indyref one or two, it would be churlish to deny that Scotland has founded grievances especially after watching the tories openly jeering Ian Blackford during today’s debate about Johnson’s wilful lies at the despatch box: any pretence that Scottish politics is respected in parliament is belied by their actions. 

Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.…’

Winston Churchill, speaking about democracy and it’s flaws

Democracy may not be perfect- America’s downfall to and through Trumpism and the UK’s similar crash and burn into Johnsonism has demonstrated this. And yet Democracy means something tangible to all and sundry who rest under it: it is infinitely preferable to the invisible shackles of other rules where the will of the people is so thoroughly ignored or discounted.

In a democracy, a failing and floundering party in charge would not be propped up by press punditry, where regulars who knew of Johnson’s failure to uphold the standards of the PM would have reported without delay, or going further back would simply have been honest about his unsuitability for the job. Instead he was painted as the roguish journo turned political pundit who would magically MUGA- Make Us Great Again.

In a democracy, a party who repeatedly broke manifesto pledges is… well, par for the course, unfortunately- everybody knows that manifesto pledges are subject to change dependant on the conditions of the world but the conservatives are diligent at one thing only: disregarding manifesto promises under the guise of covid, brexit and war. Many conservative voters have been programmed to believe that the war in Ukraine is responsible for escalated energy prices and tax hikes: but both were decided long before Putin’s fist came down upon the border of Ukraine and this can be seen on this very blog- I spoke months ago about the proposed NI hike and my disgust at a government wilfully raking money away from the British proletariat. The broken promises aren’t the main issue so much as the lies around their reasoning: a desperation for cash, the wilful dismissal of concerns around energy storage and long term green infrastructure and terrible health secretaries forcing restrictive contracts on doctors, or more bothered about kissing colleagues than running an effective health service have led to an NHS strapped for cash and bent backwards over the knee as covid continues to kill over 500 people a day. 

In a democracy, then, we would see feasible solutions to a government who has proven itself unable to front its duties: but we don’t. We see a desperate cadre of MPs more concerned about their pay packets than the corruption seething at its core. Johnson was not the architect of the erasure of democracy- it far precedes him- but he is the accelerant, the petrol upon the slow burning flame that has now turned into an explosion through our oft highly regarded political spectrum and this is glaringly obvious to those who dare to stare into the flash point.

Under the last labour government the education secretary resigned because exam targets were not hit, despite the protestations of the prime minister of the time. That is honour, and duty and overall the brave ownership of a job not so well done. In place of that long respected system of accountability we now see cronyism at it’s finest as Johnsonite stooges circle the bullet-riddled wagons to protect a man who has completely derailed transparency in politics.

Johnson’s ascent to power was solidified between (as Supertanskiii has spoken extensively about) client journalism a la Laura Kuenssberg, an ever increasing tory bias at the BBC and a desperation to empower a right wing leader with supposed Charisma: whatever you think of Johnson, somehow he manages to capture the credulity of smarter people. He has been described as roguish and comedic, hosted TV shows and written entertaining articles utterly bereft of fact. Add to that the indulgent upbringing of a boy who is quoted as saying he wished to one day be king of the world and powerful friends like Evgenny Lebvedev assuring him that he would rise to the top job if he backed brexit and you see that Johnson has both clawed for the job and been pushed uphill by those with agendas he could fulfil: now at last that Brexit has decimated the economy but deepened the pockets of the already wealthy, perhaps his ‘good friends’ are done with him at last- will the PM so known for leaving the wreckage of marriages, friendships and reputations in his wake hear the crash when his marionette strings fall loose at last and he falls to earth from his ascension? 


Until Boris Johnson is ousted from his lofty perch and finally feels the sting of repercussions for his scorn towards the office and the British public we will only see this merry go round of fervent front benchers and unashamed back benchers forced before us to defend, deny and distract us at the valuable expense of our dignity and the last shreds of their respectability. The conservative government has long commanded my grudging respect as a party that will ruthlessly do what it takes to uphold it’s own values. Now it does not even have that. I am not their target audience, not their voter base- but their expert job in alienating their voters to enshrine a man who has destroyed their credibility has been something to behold, and until they decisively show Johnson the door for his misdeeds, his shadow will be cast long and wide over the always detestable but once, at least, respectable- Tory Party, henceforth known as the party of illicit parties.  

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

Strongmen? Putin? Trump? Johnson? Don’t make me laugh.

By Daviemoo

Many people, not just Clare Foges, refer to people like Trump, like Putin- and even like Boris Johnson as strongmen. And though they can ostensibly shield themselves behind that perception, even a quick look at their actions sets the match of truth to the tinder paper of their lies. The idea that it takes a strong man to bring order and authoritarian tropes is foolish, because only authoritarian leaders are so afraid of dissent that they forfeit the freedoms of discourse, repeating empty lines about G7 recoveries and vaccine rollouts or EU membership instead of facing, head on, the scrutiny of a tired and angry country.

Ruth Ben-Ghiat has written an extensive book bringing light into the dark and murky perception of the strongman and revealing the departure from any rectitude it takes to be, or be perceived as, a classic strongman. She also spoke at length on “Enemies of the People“, a podcast about extremism to discuss the perception of the strongman and why those who are seen as such by the media are anything but, and looking at today’s examples of this archetype it’s easy to see why. Take Putin.

Vladimir Putin is a coward. A terrified coward who hides himself behind the facade of a ruthless strongman. Throughout history, strongmen have appeared in various guises and often the biggest examples of “strongmen” are in fact- not.

Putin’s regime is handled with an iron fist, something which seems, at a glance, to be a trope of a strong and powerful man. Nobody is denying Putin’s power, but strong? It’s the mark of a coward to prevent any scrutiny. It’s why any attempt to place Johnson as an opposite of someone like Putin is, frankly, funny. Johnson is cut from the scraggly end of the same cloth as Putin.

Looking at his government’s flagrant attempts to seize the reins of whatever passes for democracy in the UK, it’s quite plain to see that Johnson desperately wants to push the message of someone with a plan, with a big brain- someone who knows what’s right, what’s best for the people: we’ll take protest away because it might bother you (even though it’s a fundamental right), we’ll tear ourselves out of the single market and the customs union (it means cheaper goods and a much freer market for you to sell into and buy from but so what, freedom!), who needs covid restrictions (hospitals are crawling slowly towards almost 100% capacity nationwide, the cancer treatments we were told would be freed up by dropping restrictions are cancelled left right and centre- but we’re the first country ‘through’ the pandemic eh)

This attempt to make Johnson out as a weak leader is right- but not for the reasons that writers like Foges think: all strongmen leaders are cowardly. Johnson is a member of this club along with those she lauds as “doers”; after all, their favourite defence of Johnson is that he “got brexit done” – heedless of the profound cost of course. To a man, every leader who fits this trope is weak, more interested in consolidating power in a shield around them than doing the job. We’ve seen the perfect examples of this over and over- Let’s look at another example foges mentioned: Donald Trump.

So riled he was that his authority was challenged over his appalling handling of the Coronavirus pandemic he incited an insurrection during a pandemic, uncaring as to whether his followers may sicken or die defending him. He could have spent his time in office making the American people’s lives better, could have brought in legislation to redistribute tax, fix healthcare, reform police or the army, change budgeting. Instead he clung to his podium speaking about invisible, inexorable enemies of democracy as he worked to besmirch it with his own grubby hands. Strong men sit back and let their minions, usually other men, do their bidding. They enthrall others with promises of power and station, and use them. They snatch fear from the hearts of other men and use this fear to line up human shields before them. Only true strong men face the scrutiny of the opposition, the true criticisms of their adversaries and do it without an army of others surrounding them: it’s the equivalent of the person who bullies you when his friends are around but ignores you when he’s alone. And for some reason we have all collectively allowed this archetypal throwback to mediocrity to continually take the podium of power.

Now looking back at Johnson we can see that he fits in well with this crowd of peers that he’s occasionally placed in opposition to. Lets’ then look at other supposed strongmen like the leaders of true authoritarian regimes- Brazil’s Bolsonaro, a man who spent the pandemic talking about his penis and selling off the rainforest or letting it burn. Strong men are seen as bull headed, as if it’s a positive that you can’t change the mind of a man who has decided that he should let the life preserving trees on his continent turn to ash even when presented with science. Johnson too said we would be on course to “irreversibly open the economy” only to close it again months later as coronavirus rocked the nation again. So is a strong man a man who can admit to his wrongdoings, or a man who obfuscates them? At this point, I’m not sure it matters: strong men are the ones who rush in and make the wrong decisions in the first place.

Lately Johnson has taken to referring to President Zelenskyy as “my friend”, a transparent attempt to capture that machismo, bravery and effortless charisma that Zelenskyy has displayed as his country faces horrors beyond our pale imaginations in the UK. This is, of course, another trope that strongmen use- desperately trying to capture the accolades of actual leaders: we both know if war broke out in the UK Johnson would hide so deeply underground he would cook his morning toast on the outside of the earth’s molten core.

Ultimately one has to question why the world is so captivated by these wasteful men, men so afraid of scrutiny they refuse to recall parliament to face questions about their probity, and why people like Foges try so desperately to separate Johnson from the pack. Everybody knows that men like Johnson, Bolsonaro, Trump, Putin are all of apiece and their continued efforts to inherit a power they are too weak to lift aloft is to the detriment of all those being crushed beneath.

The Great Theatrics of Modern Politics

By Daviemoo

Roll up one and all and see the greatest performance ever given by politicians! A play so absorbing that its enthralled a nation of those willing to buy the unlikely story that a group of people responsible for nearly 200,000 deaths due to a preventable disease, who have overseen scandal after scandal from blackmail and bullying to their stirring performance as reverse Robin Hoods- stealing from the poor to give succour to the rich- were ever interested in making our lives better.

We live in a remarkable time. Many things have contributed to the through the looking glass state of affairs we find ourselves in. 9/11, the incompetence of the Bush administration, Blair’s descent into useful lapdog and overt liar who pushed an agenda of war on us for the sake of the black lifeblood of the planet- oil. There’s a distinct delineation between the performative lies of someone like Blair and- as a byproduct- Starmer: they lie about sticking to promises and policies because they genuinely think and perhaps know that lying for the greater good benefits the majority. I do not hate those politicians who lie thinking they must do so for “the greater good” but lying, nonetheless, leads to the sort of crushing disgrace that ended Blair’s tenure.

But this type of performance, this lying is different than the insidious lies of people like Trump, Johnson, Patel and almost every single member of the conservative party “functioning” in the uk today. It is not to excuse it- but a lie told in isolation is different than the constant performance of roles that has encompassed the tories for the last 12 years.

The theatrics of Johnson’s red faced rants at the despatch box are meant only to absolve him of culpability in his now myriad well advertised crimes, some of which are listed above. A man who oversaw wholesale death at the hands of a plague then stood in an expensive press room, studiously dishevelled as only a man running a disaster can be and who barely contained his scene-breaking smirk as he blamed everyone from NHS staff to care home workers to the individuals ourselves, failing at every turn to grasp the depths of the role he plays- his own vital and completely unfufilled role as arbiter of safety. A man who somberly promised there were no parties- but then there were parties but he didn’t go- but then he did go but he didn’t know it was a party- but he did go and he did know it was a party but parties are ok: bravissimo! Johnson truly outdid himself as an actor through those scenes; I know were it me, I would likely have broken and laughed at the obscenity of such poorly written lines- but he performed them with gusto!

The playbook which this government has functioned from has always been written to shirk blame: you will note that not once has any tory, even performatively admitted responsibility for the outcomes of brexit on our economy, of coronavirus and the deaths therein, of rising hate crimes, of the knighthood of a man who oversaw the worst exam results because he would not factor in a pandemic, of the lobbying scandal or of a doctored race report or even of Johnson’s apparently strenuously rehearsed insinuation that Starmer was responsible for the monster that is Jimmy Saville. But that is because any person- not a minority, not even the majority, matters in this play we’re swept up in. Johnson tore up the playbook of politician and is rewriting as he goes, forgetting to refer to his own source material. That’s hardly surprising- Johnson’s prose has always been harshly critiqued by anyone unfortunate enough to delve into it. His half baked lies about political correctness being an import from the EU, fallacious claims of government ministers potential homosexual affairs… he may be an actor. A great writer he is not.

As a man, and a government obsessed with market prominence, the market itself took on the role of judge, jury and indeed executioner of coronavirus. If you couldn’t afford to stay home then perhaps you should have worked a bit harder, studied more, perhaps you should have saved more to get a mortgage then you didn’t HAVE to go out to work: you could have been offered a more prominent role in the play of modern Britain: But we weren’t all offered the stage Johnson was, we worked for our meagre bit parts and we were shunned from the spotlight- a man such as he would never understand this life because it’s so alien to his own. Every pundit who worked as his agent to install him knew he would deliver a brilliant performance as a prime minister, but when it came to fulfilling those duties he would, and has, and is, and will continue- to fall flat, miss the notes, forget the lines.

This mindset so common amongst the elite is not surprising. Those born to be stars are so used to it that it fades into the background. What’s surprising is how successfully this government has played it’s role, plying the working class with this message- and how many have accepted their bit part at the coliseum of conservative- how many working class people stand and cheer at the interval, crying “yes, yes our lives are worse, we’re poorer, more unhealthy, our family and friends died, we can’t afford to heat our homes- more, more!” They leave rave reviews for a government performatively talking about wanting to be the party of tax cuts as taxes go up, the party of individual responsibility as they shirk their own duties- they go off book every day on stage, speaking contradictions to their character and yet the proletariat rise from their seat, applauding.

9% of the UK tested positive for coronavirus last week. Where was the scene of a PM worried for the health of his nation? Was it cut from the play? No.
Because the UK are bored of hearing about covid, because the government and a less than useless media are not pushing the message- there are many reasons. But most of it, to my belief, boils down to a prime minister who stands unflinching at the despatch box, his brows knitted in consternation as he orates about how well we’ve done (despite having the highest deaths in Europe), how great our vaccine rollout (which is now woefully low on the world table and doesn’t even factor in children) is, how we’re levelling up (as 1.1 million people are due to drop into the trenches of poverty). Johnson’s lines are well rehearsed, and of course, complete nonsense.

The prime minister’s bluster is performed by a master of wordplay with absolutely no substance. I often imply that he is a stupid man, and I do believe that there is a dearth of common sense in that head- but to deny he is consciously complicit of his decision to let the market dictate death is to offer him a disservice- I credit Mr Johnson with knowingly leading us into mass death and a decimated economy. Because Johnson and huge swaths of those who gather to watch him perform are fans of hope. They want to live off the great glory of a Britain that never existed. “Built by hard working people” they will extoll in parliament. Built then by slaves imported in droves to fulfil the wishes of our ancestors, and built now by the poor whose earnings are being pared down to nothing by a government who will take our taxes and stuff them in the coffers, ready to drip drip drip feed us until the run up to an election they hope to storm. Suddenly the magic money tree will bloom and Johnson will cry ‘ITS BECAUSE OF ME- I WORKED TO GET YOU THIS MONEY’. A performance worthy of Shakespeare- a man Johnson is writing a book about and being paid more for than I will earn in 5 years no doubt.

Boris Johnson could, tomorrow, convene parliament and do all manner of things to help the cost of living crisis. Energy companies cannot just up and leave; their earnings should be capped and the extra money reinvested into consumer savings, or into green energy which would and should be cheaper. But he would have to eschew the role he’s played for so long. Out would go the spotlights and in he would step, the caricature lost, and we would finally see a contrite, a worried, a selfless PM who would do what he could to help us: but this is a role Johnson is utterly incapable of fulfilling: he is typecast. He will not change.

He could have worked collaboratively with the EU on a brexit deal that didn’t involve heinous red tape and therefore push up the price of goods, ruin businesses that rely on import/export expedience. He could fairly tax the hyper rich, close the tax loopholes that the EU was working on so those who earn obscene amounts of money pay fairly and proportionately. But Boris Johnson will approach the despatch box with his sneering surety that Britain must suffer under his guidance because the market dictates it so. So it is with this that we must realise: Johnson is not a prime minister, he is an actor on a stage, performing a brilliant imitation of a businessman running the country like a firm to maximise profit even at the expense of the workers. As long as the CEOs are rich our lives or deaths do not matter.

Johnson and his allies have each stepped up to the spotlight to perform wonderfully convincing soliloquies, each convincing us of a different reason for the play we’re unwittingly performing: it’s the people of colour, the foreigners, the LGBT+ who have stolen the show, made the whole performance about them: but it is the minorities who simply ask for time on stage- we didn’t write the play. those who proceeded Johnson’s government did, and this government’s wilful continuation of a storyline of deflecting blame is the true reason we are here.

As the audience of the Johnson government’s play dwindles due to covid deaths, due to starvation, hypothermia in their own homes, due to rising hate crimes one must wonder: who will be alive to witness the curtain fall? Will we be lucky enough to survive the full tenure of the Johnson government- and of those who do make it to the final act, who will stand and cry “encore”.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

What would a world without “woke” culture be like?

By Daviemoo

Many of us who are labelled “woke” already live in a world suffused with anti minority sentiment- a cursory scroll of someone like Katy Montgomerie’s twitter shows the relentless onward rumble of abuse that she faces from those who are mildly uncomfortable with transgender women, to those who outwardly call for the arrest and forced de-transitioning of anyone transgender; conversely, many of the most outspoken critics of “cancel culture” live in a world where they can and do say whatever they want to and face absolutely no consequence for it. But what if those who rage against cancel culture win? What would that world look like? And could we really stomach a “so what” society?

Society at it’s core is huge, vast and varied and unfortunately it’s a simple fact that society must function by making allowances for divergence from what could be termed as the norm. If every person who did not fit the norm was ostracised from society, human civilisation would be laughably small and far away from where we are now. Human acceptance has been perilous ever since the first human emerged from their cave, saw another human and wondered why their hair was a different colour.

The benefit of intellect is that we can discuss how we can co-exist and make each other’s lives easier- but humans are still in some strange phase of our existence where we’d rather exhaust debate on why we shouldn’t, than why we should.

Let’s say the anti woke brigade won: how would life be for anyone outside of the lucky few who aren’t affected now by, and would continue not to be affected by the implementation of a “so what” culture?

People of colour

“Woke” sentiment is closely linked to anti racist sentiment- so scrap any and all discourse around racial inequality. It doesn’t mean racial inequality doesn’t exist- merely that it is not discussed. Any person of colour who faced inequality- be that micro aggressions or outright hatred- would be met with indifference in the “so what” society. Racist hiring practices could continue unabated with employers merely shrugging when called out on their inability to hire people of colour. Tests on blind CV’s have highlighted a worrying disparity on conversions of people with ethnic names to employees at organisations- and the backlash to organisations offering roles to people of colour has been thunderous- even when those roles are either best filled by people of colour due to the nature of the job or are specifically designed to wall over a shortfall in representation when it comes to broader society.

In the “so what” society, systemic racism would be glossed over with reports from the government that would reference experts who were not consulted to contribute. The inequalities faced by people of colour in the UK would be explained away with “agency” rather than a deep look into how the continuation of ostracising behaviour propagated by the government and a systematically racist society has contributed to worse living conditions, worse mental health outcomes and worse treatment by institutions like hospitals and police.

When nation wide protests are sparked about racial inequality and how to deal with it, including the glorification of slave traders, a “so what” society would likely spend more time focusing on the damage to a public statue and the four white people who did it than the feelings of people of colour who had to walk past a statue of a man who may have enslaved their ancestors.

LGBT+ people

Often when we speak out about the abuses we face, whether again micro aggressions like being asked invasive questions about who puts what genitals where, who has what genitals, or disgusting comments about STIs – we’re told that it “could be worse” and to be “thankful” for how we’re treated or spoken to or about.

We’re treated to regular sermonising about how we’re perverted or seen as unseemly because we have different sexualities.

Gay men are often accused of paedophilia as a pejorative, never so much as recently with the stoking of anti trans sentiment- if you publicly defend transgender people on the internet you will, it is a solemn promise, be labelled a paedophile.

In a “so what” culture, one could expect that hate crimes would rise precipitously because anti minority sentiment would be allowed to go unchecked to the point that organisations would step away from legislation designed to protect minorities from discrimination- and in fact, aid it.

In the microcosm of anti LGBT sentiment in the “so what” society, the BBC would knowingly allow a lesbian rapist like Lily Cade to contribute to an article about fear of rape, and use widely questioned figures- like a survey run by a transphobic group to indicate societal findings about fear of trans women.

In this “so what” society, discrimination like my own, where I was called “faggot” in front of everyone at work would be allowed to happen with no punishment: I was slurred in front of half the office, some of whom were my literal employees and in response my boss- the company owner- did nothing to protect me, to punish my aggressor- I would suggest that this fits in quite well with what would happen in a “so what” society.

Of course as an already polarised person I’m looking at this through my lens- but it’s the lens of those who don’t follow the flow of society on dint of who we are that need some social consciousness in public or we’re the ones who suffer.

Women

Need I say it?

When women can be murdered in the street by policemen and the police response is to wear the right shoes or that you should flag down a bus and not to look at serious police reforms, one starts to wonder whether this is exactly what a “so what” culture would do.

When women’s reproductive rights are restricted or debated, and women are overruled on their own healthcare regularly, and when medical problems are under-diagnosed even though they are common, you could surely say that this is indicative of a so what society- or when women speak out about their genuine fears in a society that is pervaded by men who don’t respect bodily autonomy or boundaries, and “not all men” is the immediate response rather than any attempt to work with women to allay their fears or deal with the causal root of the issue one could say that’s very typical of a “so what” society.

When violence against women is met with questions like “but what was she wearing“, or when society sexualises young women like schoolgirls and thinks this is normal- the infantilisation of women for sexual pleasure- one must truly question whether society works for women, or whether it’s already the common case that when women speak about women’s issues they’re met with “so what”.

The disabled

What would likely typify the behaviour of a “so what” society when referring to disabled people? Say, in the midst of a pandemic, throwing off all restrictions to mitigate spread and ensure people were kept safe? Or perhaps not giving full living wage allowance to those forced to care for relatives who either cant afford or just don’t want to house their loved one in a care facility?

In a “so what” society, giving space and air time to disabled people would be a rarity because it would underscore the lack of support for disabled people in a country that barely tolerates the audacity of someone to be disabled, and those who do speak against the government struggle to be heard.

And when, at the height of death in the pandemic, the government legislates enforced Do Not Resuscitate orders for disabled people you have the true measure of whether a society does, or does not feel “woke” about disabled people’s issues.

You have what you want

Society has long been about asking people to at the very least control their voicing of their inner thoughts- think what you want, but don’t say it. Even this has become too much for the polemic group of anti woke nonsense pushing. Simply being asked to think whatever you want, no matter how heinous but keep it in your head is a travail they cannot endure. And yet when it is our comfort, our autonomy, our names, our pronouns, our liberties we ask to be respected -they cannot do so. How strange that we must return the favour which is never employed for us?

When you look closely at our society, you begin to understand that the issue that the anti woke crowd have is simply that they aren’t able to thoughtlessly speak with impunity – but none of us are barred from doing just that, we just elect to be decent people. What we have is a crowd of people desperate to have society foster their desire to say bad things without being made to feel guilty for them.

I’m afraid, dear anti wokers- you have the society you desperately crave and you’re wasting time asking for it to be more closed. Imagine what society would be like without allowances for difference, without consideration for other people; a deep, dark and horribly unhappy place where even the discussion of inequality cannot be stomached because it may make people feel bad.

If you really want to know what the society of your dreams looks like, perhaps it’s time to realise that it’s actually your worst nightmare.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.