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Beware: Big Dog cornered

January 17, 2022

The sight of Boris Johnson fighting for his political life is not pretty. He will sacrifice anything and anyone to save his own skin. The blizzard of reports about Operation Save Big Dog and Operation Red Meat should strike fear into the hearts of any reasonable, responsible citizen of this country.

Of course, once the childish names given to the panic-stricken manoeuvring in Downing Street hit the weekend papers it was quickly denied that such plans existed or that they had silly names. No-one believes anything that comes out of the Ministry of Lies at Downing Street anymore.

What is in those plans should concern us all.

Another brutal attack on the BBC, motivated by all the ugly paranoia that was on display throughout the Brexit campaign and beyond. The polarised nature of political discourse today does not allow much room for an independent broadcaster. Unless people hear only an echo of their own voices they automatically think it is against them. They cannot grasp the concept of independence in the media. Such ignorance is rampant among senior ministers.

Even more shocking is the proposal, confirmed this afternoon, to deploy the Royal Navy against refugees trying to cross the English Channel in totally unsuitable inflatable boats. This is an act of heartless brutality. It will do nothing to address the refugee crisis that grips the whole of Europe. It is another demonstration of the alarming lack of ability in this government.

Nothing we do to try to stop these poor people fleeing war, poverty, famine and oppression from reaching the UK will work. The pull of the UK for many is certainly very strong, although only for a minority that reach Europe’s southern shores, but it will never outweigh the push of what they are trying to escape. That is why the only humane and practical solution is to create safe routes.

Safe routes have many obvious advantages, not least that they would sideline the people smugglers. If you can reach the country of your choice and apply for asylum or residence in an orderly and efficient manner why would you need a criminal gang to transport you?

I often walk past the two Kindertransport memorials at London’s Liverpool Street station. We were proud to reach out to those fleeing oppression in 1938. What has happened to our values and our sense of a common humanity?

The policy consequences of Operation Save Big Dog are appalling. But so is Johnson’s willingness to throw anyone under the bus as he flays around looking for people to blame for his own failings. Apparently, everyone else at Downing Street apart from him is responsible for the drinking culture that carried on unabated while the rest of us were trying hard to obey the rules we thought were necessary to protect ourselves and other people.

I even read a suggestion over the weekend that the drinking culture pre-dates Johnson’s time at No 10. Now we know he has taken leave of his senses. Nothing could ever convince me that the joyless Theresa May presided over Westminster’s Party Central.

Big Dog? More like Mad Dog.

Pic credit: Andrew Parsons, CC licence

From → Politics

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