Sunday 2 February 2020

Thank God the Tories did not win the 2017 election

“Democracy is the most revolutionary thing in the world.” Tony Benn

Nothing is inevitable till it happens but once it happens it often seems inevitable. So it already is with Brexit, but not in the eyes of hardcore Remainers, the irreconcilable ultras like Lord Adonis and A.C. Grayling. 

They want Brexit to be a disaster and for Britain to do very badly in the years to come, until the sin of Brexit is undone.  Until then, they will refuse to accept Brexit 50p pieces in their change.

Whacko, whacko, whacko. And they think Leave voters are fantasists.

But there was nothing inevitable about Brexit. It happened because of Eurosceptic Tory MPs called headbangers banging on for decades. It happened because of that amateur Ealing Comedy party, UKIP. It happened because the EU did not make some real concessions to David Cameron when he tried to negotiate some. 

It also happened because the British voted for it twice, because they want to rule themselves.

Yet it was nip and tuck. The FT on its front page on election day last month had a poll showing there would be a hung Parliament - which would have meant a second referendum, though Leave would have presumably won again. Perhaps there was something inevitable about it, after all.

Theresa May losing the Tory majority that she had been handed created all the problems of the following two and half years. However thank God she lost. I am horrified by the thought of what she would have done and be doing with Britain had she won the majority of 60 or 90 that everyone expected. 

Sir Ivan Rogers, the British government's Ambassador to the EU said last week

“The British government in late 2016/2017 made every mistake in the book. I have to be honest, from outside, I can say this with some impunity because I had resigned by that point.”
She could have negotiated better with a majority but I do not know if she would have done. She  thought Brexit a disastrous mistake, explicable only by a desire to keep out East European immigrants. 

None of the burning injustices that she wanted to put right were injustices, unless you are an egalitarian who likes social engineering and does not know that society is organic.

Thank God we escaped that regime of race and gender audits, workers on boards and politically correct, ineffective policing. 

At least I hope we have. I am not sure.

The British electorate have a habit of making the right decisions at elections, though I wish Labour had narrowly lost in 1964 instead of narrowly winning. The Tories were tired then as they were in 1997. The electors had very good reasons for voting for New Labour, though New Labour in practice meant the two most disastrous governments in our history. 

Had it not been for New Labour it would have been Old Labour, who might have been worse, but who would have left office sooner. 

Can we please move on from Blairism now?


  1. Good article and I agree with your point about moving on.

    Surely it's obvious people voted Tory to "get Brexit done", but now it's done they will vote for Labour next time as they're more likely to do something about climate change and stand up to the tax-dodging antics of Big Business.

  2. They won't vote for communists who back our country's enemies. The Labour Party is a 20th century answer to 19th century problems. People don't vote on issues like climate change or tax avoidance. They vote for things they care about like the nation, immigration, democracy, a better standard of living, fairness.

  3. They vote for schools, hospitals and public works too, much as I'd prefer them to want low taxes and small government. Like Mr Gladstone, I am for peace, retrenchment and reform.