What is the world coming to eh? This must be a question being asked up and down the planet.
There were worse times in history, but I think it’s fair to say that the world has never been in a greater state of change and unrelenting flux. Are we on a great cusp of a new peak of humanity, or do we stand upon the brink of a new low?
Trump pulls out of the Paris Climate agreement, terrorism foists itself upon the innocent at every chance – only a few hours ago an attack has happened on London Bridge, not two weeks after Manchester and when the country is on the cusp of a General Election. An election campaign that was forged in Brexit, but has yet come to embody so much more. Polls are rife with speculation as the Tory lead has withered from colossus to pigmy in mere weeks. If there is once certainty it is that nothing is certain and so little can be predicted. It seems politics changes by the hour in Britain and Trump and North Korea do their best to keep the world dancing on tip-toes.
I must confess some schadenfreude: I’ve found the dwindling lead of the Tories delicious.
I understand why Theresa May-Pole (my new anointed name for her) with her inexhaustible talent for U-Turns, political entanglements, and policies that are mere ribbons and slogans. It is said that Politicians are poor historians – often true – but Theresa May’s decision to call a snap election: which she protests as a grave undertaking inspired the heights of Snowdonia, rather than a yawning poll lead filled with country miles.
Theresa May DOES believe in polls because if she didn’t then she would not have trusted them enough to call the election. This is as obvious as it is understandable. What I dislike is the patronising dishonesty. I suspect that she may have skipped Greek while at boarding school or she may have learned the word: Hubris. I suggest what she’s not learned in words she performs in deeds, for it seems the Tories are producing a Greek Tragedy of their own – with Theresa having the starring role of doomed heroine. What a pickle. All could yet end well for Theresa: Fortune may yet smile on her and deliver her the election result that she and her party crave.
However, it seems that Theresa is doomed to fail on the very thing she sees as her great strength: her track record. Either she or her advisors, I suspect both, were arrogant enough to think that by just talking about Brexit it would dominate the debate. Dominate debate to the extent that her unflattering record of failures would be trampled by Popularism. She was wrong. Whatever the result come Friday morning the ‘Strong and stable’ mantra has lost its magical powers. What we have seen is leadership that is brittle, unsure and knock-kneed. She could, and should, still win. But anything less than a thumping majority and the Tory Grandees will open her veins and hang her out to dry.
The Tories are not afraid to kill their darlings, maybe Theresa should remember that when she allows herself to be flattered by comparisons to Thatcher. Whatever one thinks of Thatcher she had a wit, a charisma, and a political instinct that Theresa will never possess no matter how many ‘Maggie’ pearls she wears. Thatcher still got stabbed in the back: even with eyes in the back of her head. The scales have fallen from the eyes of the electorate. It’s she that stands naked in front of the electorate and a rejuvenated Corbyn who’s combination of chequered past, Dad-next-door warmth, and throw-back manifesto has saved Labour from humiliation – it seems. The Corbyn elixir, brewed on hustings and TV debates, now smells good enough for some of the electorates to want a taste. This state of affairs is, of course, Kryptonite for the Tories, and when faced with it Theresa is drained of all strength. This may explain her need to limit direct exposure to Corbyn in a head to head debate. Trident has not proved too toxic for Corbyn. No matter anyway: the damage is done.
As yet I’ve avoided much of the news on the latest attack, but reality cannot be avoided for long.
Theresa, I’m sure, will do her upmost to reassure the public. However, the Fates can be cruel and when she consulted her cabal it would have been wise to remember Macbeth. For it is unwise to try and snatch a crown for the sake of power. The most recent attacks will further illuminate her past cuts to policing and the security services: wounds that are borne, in the flesh, by the victims. Theresa may well get there – a win may become hers – but it will not be a landslide and she may end up with less than she bargained for. Win or loose the Labour party have resuscitated themselves and found the keys to get out of the morgue. By trying to throttle the opposition she made it fight for its own life: where now, if she had left off, Labour would have lapsed further into the coma of irrelevance in the cut and thrust of Brexit negotiations.
The May-bot has got a virus. The orchestra of tragedy rings ever louder with each attack and further highlights the plot of the drama. The public is paying a heavy price for security cuts, and the ravished NHS and these issues are being highlighted on the cusp of an election of her own making. The questions will keep coming just as her batteries begin to run flat. Anything less than a landslide and even the most stringent Tory will be asking if the election should have been called at all. I turn on the television and the screen is filled with flashing blue lights – in an area I ate, walked and cycled through yesterday: Borough Market. One must have perspective. The sky does not fall down: but it changes colour.
The sky doesn’t fall down: but it changes colour.