A few weeks ago, I described the UK government/economy as the Titanic; that they had deliberately rammed it into the iceberg because their (taxpayer funded) bar had runout of ice cubes, and I pleaded with them to at least address the gaping hole in the side of the ship.
Sunak’s Cabinet reshuffle last week show that they are rearranging the deckchairs. Granted, there isn’t a lot left to choose from in the Tory ranks, as most can be described as Post-Scandal, Mid-Scandal, or Scandal yet to come, it’s only a matter of time. It’s not a matter of who can be trusted, it’s knowing what they can’t be trusted with. Can’t be trusted with money, can’t be trusted to not bully subordinates, can’t be trusted not to sexually harass subordinates, can’t be trusted to speak in public, can’t be trusted…. generally.
First, they’re deciding on a new layout for the deckchairs: Splitting and creating new government departments. The department for Business, energy and Industrial strategy is now the Department of Energy Supply and Net Zero, the Department of Science, Innovation and Technology, and the Department of Business and Trade. Of course, it will take a while to set up these departments and to figure out what exactly they are meant to be doing. It will be at least a year before we see any real initiative or plans from them. And as they are smaller departments, they are meant to have more focus; they will also have smaller budgets and less power to do anything.
The Tories have become Masters of Looking Busy while Achieving Nothing. The re-shuffle was Sunak’s way of avoiding negotiating with the Unions or talking about the strikes. They don’t care about making the current cluster-tastrophe better for the voters. They are in power, making money, expensing their household bills and they want to ride that wave for as long as possible. The mantra of office workers everywhere; keep quiet and look busy.
If there is one person I almost feel sorry for in the Reshuffle, it’s new Tory Party Chairman Greg Hands. (Almost, because he chose to be a Tory, that’s on him.) In his new role, he has to oversee the strategies for the local elections in May and for the next General Election. He’s basically in charge of bailing out the Titanic, he has been provided with a teacup to facilitate this.
So far, he doesn’t seem any more corrupt than the average politician. No sex scandals; with a name like Hands, even the slightest impropriety would get him a memorable and embarrassing nickname. He recently told a story about how a Russian spy tried to recruit him in a pub. I feel like this is a story he tells to make himself more interesting. I question the veracity of any story that starts with “So I was down at the Pub and…”.
But the real reason I (almost) pity him is that his new Deputy Party Chair is Lee Anderson. Red wall MP, 30p Lee. I think he is the Tory Party’s new lightning rod, their new Big-Mouth, Small-Brain random Offensive Statement Generator, taking over from BoJo,(who is sitting in the corner, plotting his return while everyone else tries to forget he was ever PM).
Lee Anderson, who asserts that people using food banks just don’t know how to cook, and should be able to live on 30p per meal; Chefs, Dieticians and Nutritionists say that is possible, but only if you cut out all protein, flavour and nutritional value. Lee responded by flaunting a receipt for a 30p breakfast he and his minions had prepared. My response? He was cooking for 176 people, bulk buying always reduces costs, and most people don’t have the freezer capacity for 172 leftover portions. My 2nd response? He had one meal for 30p; try living on that. Even for a week. 30p per meal, no cheating, no subsidised House of Commons restaurant meals. I Dare You. With any luck, the experience will leave him too weak to speak.
He has also expressed his support of the death penalty as being 100% effective. “Nobody ever committed a crime after being executed.” A truly asinine statement, as the ultimate conclusion of that line of thought is kill everyone and let God sort them out. Anderson prides himself on being Anti-Woke, really he’s just boorish. Whenever he makes a deliberately offensive statement, he says his constituents are squarely behind him. A recent poll of Ashfield voters labelled him “A bit of a Prat.”
The thing is, Lee Anderson can be counted on to say the shocking, offensive and, most importantly, HEADLINE GRABBING thing. He’s the Tory Party’s new performing Monkey. So when he starts to dance, you have to ignore him and look hard at what everyone else is doing. It’s the quiet ones you have to look out for. They are Tories, so they are doing something nefarious.