Monday, 18 February 2019

Very very important things

Seven MPs from a party that isn't in power and has nothing useful to say for itself have resigned. Generally they are known as centrists if they are known at all. Chuka Umunna is one of them. He's a hardcore remainer. Shallow, widely despised, and last time I bothered to check he was facing deselection.

Then there's Luciana Berger. She is not known for accomplishing anything. She has suffered appalling antisemitic abuse but has maximised the offence taking for all that it's worth as a stick with which to beat Corbyn. Berger says she has come to "sickening conclusion" that Labour is "institutionally anti-Semitic". Which it pretty much is. I once thought antisemitism barely existed in the UK until Corbyn came along and now I see it quite often.

As to Gavin Shuker, Chris Leslie, Angela Smith, Mike Gapes and Ann Coffey, I am only dimly aware they even exist. I think Smith may have registered on my radar as saying something sensible once but I can't remember what it was and I may even be mistaken.

We do not, as yet, know what they stand for specifically but then that is also true of Labour. We know they want an enquiry over the 1984 Battle of Orgreave and we know they want to put transvestite rapists into women's prisons for reasons best known to them, and they have a bizarre fixation on the Israeli-Palestine conflict which most normal people don't really care about anymore. And yes, it really bothers them that the state does not own the railways. They don't talk about any problems I actually have.

Course, there is that small matter of Brexit, where Labour does have an official policy but it varies according to who you speak with and the particular day of the week. They want a customs union because they think it has something to do with border cooperation. Presumably this new group of avowed remainers will have something different, but equally useless to say. 

One assumes these individuals were hoping that some of their colleagues who aren't facing deselection would follow them out of the party. Being though, that none of them are there on merit and they represent constituencies which would elect a hatstand if it wore a red rosette, they are not going to pass up on a £70k a year job - not least because they lack the talent to earn that in the real world.

It has been suggested that perhaps Sarah Wollaston, Dominic Grieve and Anna Soubry may leave the Tory benches and join them. This also would have zero bearing on Brexit negotiations and make no change to the parliamentary arithmetic and nobody will particularly care. It has also been suggested that this new group may merge with the all but extinct Liberal Democrat party echoing the SDP in the 80's, which, should it happen, won't particularly matter either. We'd just be back to two and a half party politics which has been the norm of my lifetime. Notwithstanding those robust Scottish folk.

Being that this is very very very important we can now expect the media to give it full saturation coverage not least because it raises the non question of Labour's leadership where Corbyn won't resign. That will be super interesting and totally worth the nine pages each newspaper devotes to it. I eagerly await Brendan O'Neill's hot take in the Spectator on how Brexit is destroying the old establishment parties. Giddy with anticipation even. 

Meanwhile, I don't know if it has been mentioned, but on the 29th of March this year, Britain is leaving the European Union, possibly with a deal but very possibly without. Mrs May is doing the rounds of member state premiers to drum up support for any kind of concession, which she will not get. MPs, whichever side of the house they sit on, will then have to decide whether to vote for the deal or not. Whether they back Jeremy Corbyn or not will be a matter of supreme indifference. 

The Labour party split, however, is considerably more important than perhaps finding out how and why Brexit will affect business at the beginning of April. MPs are important doncha know? They're on the telly and everything. They obviously think they are very clever and very important people so we should think so as well - and keeping our media entertained is far more important than informing people. 

We could not, for instance, use a well paid class of people to report that Dominic Raab is lying about ports and aviation functioning as normal on Brexit day. That sort of information is not at all useful to anyone. What a waste of time and resources that would be. It's really us plebs who are out of touch. 

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