Richard North, 16/03/2019  
 


"Many MPs are simply too dim to understand the issues and they are not intellectually capable of grasping the complexity of the Brexit challenge". Those are not my words this time, although they could easily have been written by me and I have said as much in many previous posts.

This time, though, it's Dominic Sandbrook, writing in the Mail under the headline, "Taking us for fools!". Sandbrook thus says "our sneering and pompous MPs could threaten the future of our democracy". And as I am wont to say of the legacy media, they catch up eventually.

Sandbrook, however, goes further in naming names, pointing to the Commons speaker, John Bercow, "who treats the whole thing as an opportunity to show off", Jeremy Corbyn, "who rants and raves at the despatch box without showing the slightest scintilla of intelligence or integrity", and that clown Boris Johnson, "who sees all this as a vehicle for his leadership ambitions, and blithely tells a radio interviewer that police investigations into historic child sex abuse were 'spaffing money up the wall'".

What about Mark Francois, jousting with novelist Will Self on TV about the size of his penis, Sandbrook asks, adding that "it almost went unnoticed that Labour MP Fiona Onasanya turned up to vote this week wearing an electronic tag, having just been released from prison after lying when she was caught speeding".

There is no doubt, he says, that some ERG hardliners have become addicted to the sound of their own voices. "Would their chief shop steward, Steve Baker, be on television quite so often if Brexit were done and dusted? No wonder he and his friends keep voting against the deal. They don’t want to lose their place in the limelight".

The other great villains, Sandbrook adds, are the hardliners on the other side, the slavering "People's Vote" fanatics who never miss a chance, their bottom lips wobbling, to tell us how wonderfully principled they are. Once again, he adds, "it amazes me that these sanctimonious prigs cannot see how arrogant, graceless and irresponsible they appear".

And so it goes on, using very much the language I've been known to use, alongside Pete, both of us taking our share of opprobrium, and the sneering dismissals of the clever-dicks who know so much better than we do and are so keen to mark us down as marginal to the debate.

But the fact is that Sandbrook is putting his finger on these issues. His writing about them in a popular newspaper is an important development, even if his voice (like so many) is lost in the prevailing noise. He offers a necessary corrective, which brings home the simple fact that many (if not most) of our MPs are not up to the job, and parliament is a failed institution.

What we won't get from Sandbrook, of course, is a critique of the equally dismal role played by the media in the Brexit saga. The hypocrisy of the fourth estate is colossal – it will happily criticise just about every and anything that crosses its path, from individuals to institutions, but only very rarely does one find even a hint of understanding in the flaccid intellectual grasp of issues portrayed by the average journalist.

Then, while focusing on the politicians is a start, we also need to look at their life-support systems, from the lacklustre performance of the House of Commons library and the inadequacies of the select committees, to the self-important posturing of the think-tanks who feed the Westminster bubble.

The thing is, right from the start, there were very few options open to this nation in managing Brexit. By a simple process of elimination, therefore, the way forward was fairly clear and relatively easy to discern. You didn't need the proverbial "rocket science" to work it out, which is why we were able to put a plan together in Flexcit, which has made so much sense for so long.

It is five years since that exercise was started, in which period we've seen the political establishment, from the top down, make every mistake in the book, all the time filling the ether with noise and parading its self-importance. Yet nothing they have been able to produce is worth the tiniest fraction of the money spent on sustaining these parasites, and nothing of what they support will endure. 

Bizarrely, supposedly Brexit-supporting MPs clustered around the ERG, are at last beginning to realise that their activities are putting at risk the very survival of Brexit. Thus, we may even see a "dramatic" turnaround next Tuesday as these buffoons reverse course and support the Withdrawal Agreement.

In the meantime, the MP collective has made a laughing stock of us all, where we actually get the headline from the idiotic Sky News, declaring "EU leaders warn no-deal Brexit not ruled out despite MPs' vote for delay", with the sub-head: "The House of Commons is told a vote in favour of extending Article 50 does not necessarily rule out a no-deal Brexit".

One could ask whether there were any MPs so thick that they didn't realise this from the start, having read Article 50 and understood the meaning of treaty provisions automatically ceasing to apply in the event of no agreement. But apparently, there are hundreds of these cretins who think that their Canute-style vote can take a no-deal off the table.

But even if belatedly, they are starting to realise the obvious – and stuff which we've been telling them for ages which, in their arrogance they have ignored – much of the damage has already been done.

In Flexcit, in the early sections, I make no less than 17 references to the need for certainty and the avoidance of uncertainty, and if there was anything more important, it would be hard to find. Yet these posturing idiots have taken us to the wire and beyond, so that with 13 days left to the original Brexit day, we still don't know where we are going, or even if we are actually leaving the EU.

Effectively, all we have to show for nearly three years of torment is a divided country and a looming economic disaster, and growing evidence that we are governed by a bunch of people for whom the description "cretins" would actually be a compliment.

But, with Brexit in the limelight, the failure of the political classes to deal with this one job that they had to do opens up questions about the competence of the system to handle a wide range of tasks, from teaching our children to policing our streets and running our transport system.

And yet, while we focus on the politicians, there is still that niggling truism that we get the governments we deserve. But should the incompetent Mrs May be deposed, we see in The Times the headline: "Boris Johnson is Tory voters’ favourite to take over as party leader".

Bluntly, if the nation chose as its leader this liar, thief, sexual predator and incompetent, then it deserves everything it gets and more. There would be no hope for a nation that could willingly embrace the idea of this vile man getting anywhere near the reins of power. Personally, I would be in the remarkable position – along with many more – of rejecting the authority of any government that this oaf led, pointing out clearly and decisively that it neither represented me nor spoke for me.

Apparently, though, "brand recognition" played a large part in the positive response to Mr Johnson. Should people actually be confronted with the reality of this man moving into No 10, one hopes that sense will prevail.

However, we may not even be asked. In what is supposedly a democracy, we don't get to vote for the leader of our government, and between elections the leader is appointed by a small caucus of the party in office. It seems odd that people who are so concerned about a Brexit in name only seem quite content to have a political system that is a democracy in name only.

When we have a House of Commons filled with cretins, at least the fault lines are showing. It should now be obvious to even the meanest of intellects that Brexit is only going to be the start of a long process.

Getting rid of the EU simply exposes the dereliction of our own political system, to an extent that the EU has probably unfairly taken much of the flak for our own government's failings. Be that as it may, we need to get Brexit out of the way so that we can make a start on a long journey towards democracy, something that we've never really had in this country and delude ourselves if we think we have.

For a start, though, we will have to do something about our "sneering and pompous MPs". Fortunately, in this country, we do not have to shoot them to get rid of them. But of those who currently hold seats in the current House, very few if any should return after the next election.






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