Monday, 10 August 2020

Unlike 1997 the media are not going to attack Tory sleaze.

 If Labour are ever to win a Westminster  Election again , it will not be  because  voters suddenly start  agreeing with their policies or them finding a charismatic new leader.

It wil be because the London media simply got tired of constant  Tory Government after 13 years.

Yes they found a leader in Tony Blair who was willing to cosy up to the likes of Rupert Murdoch , but his landslide  coincide with the rise  number of people not voting and  tat many Tory voters actually helped Blair's landslide by not voting

ElectionDateElected prime minister
(during term)
Winning partySeat majoritySeatsTurnout[2

1979 (MPs)3 May 1979Margaret ThatcherConservative4363576.0%
1983 (MPs)9 June 198314465072.7%
1987 (MPs)11 June 1987Margaret Thatcher10275.3%
(John Major)
1992 (MPs)9 April 1992John Major2165177.7%
1997 (MPs)1 May 1997Tony BlairLabour17965971.4%
(MPs)7 June 2001Tony BlairLabour16765959.4%

2005 (MPs)5 May 2005Tony Blair6664661.4%
(Gordon Brown)[a]
2010 (MPs)6 May 2010David CameronConservative (coalition)[b]78[c]65065.1%
2015 (MPs)7 May 2015David CameronConservative1265066.1%
(Theresa May)[d]
2017 (MPs)8 June 2017Theresa MayConservative (minority government)[e]−5[f]65068.7%
(Boris Johnson)[g]
2019 (MPs)12 December 2019Boris JohnsonConservative8065067.3%

It is true that the John Major Government  was submerged  in scandal and sleaze , but unless the Media and public have grown more tolerant , then with a Prime Minister who has a number of illegitimate children and who moved his mistress into No 10 seems to be uneffected.

Indeed as former Liberal Democrat AM Peter Black recently  blogged 

Over in the Guardian Opinion pages, Jonathan Freedland reminds us how it has taken just twelve months for Boris Johnson to create a government of sleaze. The examples he quotes include:
  • Wasting at least £156m of taxpayers’ money on 50 million face masks deemed unsuitable for the NHS. They were bought from a private equity firm through a company that had no track record of producing personal protective equipment – or indeed anything for that matter – and that had a share capital of just £100. But this company, Prospermill, had a crucial asset. It was co-owned by one Andrew Mills, adviser to the government, staunch Brexiteer and cheerleader for international trade secretary, Liz Truss. Somehow Prospermill managed to persuade the government to part with £252m, boasting that it had secured exclusive rights over a PPE factory in China. Just one problem. The masks it produced use ear loops, when only masks tied at the head are judged by the government to be suitable for NHS staff.
  • Housing secretary Robert Jenrick's encounter with Richard Desmond at a Tory fundraising dinner last November, at which Desmond showed the cabinet minister a video of the housing development he wanted to build. After this encounter, Jenrick promptly rushed through a decision on the project, the speed of which allowed Desmond’s company to avoid paying roughly £40m in tax to the local council. That move was later designated “unlawful”, and Jenrick was forced to overturn his decision. It should be noted that developers have given £11m in donations to the Conservatives since Johnson arrived in Downing Street just one year ago.
  • Seven government contracts together worth nearly £1m that were awarded in the course of 18 months to a single artificial intelligence start-up, an outfit that just so happened to have worked for Dominic Cummings on the Vote Leave campaign. The company is called Faculty and, handily, the government minister tasked with promoting the use of digital technology, Theodore Agnew, has a £90,000 shareholding in it. More conveniently still, Faculty’s chief executive, Marc Warner, has attended at least one meeting of Sage, the scientists’ group advising the government on coronavirus. Warner’s brother, Ben, works at Downing Street as a data scientist and has been a regular at Sage where, as one attendee put it to the Guardian, he “behaved as Cummings’ deputy”. Faculty insists all “the proper processes” have been followed in the awarding of their contracts.
  • A political consultancy firm with strong ties to both Cummings and Michael Gove managed to win an £840,000 contract without any open tendering process at all. Public First is a small research company, but it is run by James Frayn, an anti-EU comrade of Cummings going back two decades, and his wife Rachel Wolf, the former Gove adviser who co-wrote the Tory manifesto for last year’s election. The government says it could skip the competitive tendering stage because emergency regulations applied, thanks to Covid. Except the government itself recorded some of Public First’s work as related to Brexit (it now says this was an accounting anomaly and that all the work related to the pandemic).
  • And then there is the prime minister’s list of nominations to the House of Lords. Besides his brother Jo, you’ll also spot former advisers, donors, Brexiters, and longtime Johnson pal Evgeny Lebedev, the Russian-born billionaire owner of London’s Evening Standard.
Freedman points out that Johnson was hardly a stickler for probity to start with: 'his attitude to the rules, grandly branded a libertarian philosophy by his pals, has long been elastic, at least when it comes to himself and those around him. As for Cummings, his breach of the lockdown during the pandemic’s most grave phase leaves no doubt: he sees the rules as applying to lesser mortals, not him.  

It makes one wonder , where the Labour Party in particular go .

Was it Jeremy Corbyn himself  that was unelectable , or his policies.

If it was the former it seems that a relatively decent politician can't bea r a sleazebag like Boris Johnson

If the latter then a socialist platform can't win.

However it seems to me that in part it was Labour MPs who either  opposed Corbyn personally or his manifesto , and who are more interested in winning power than supporting the views of its members.

One wonders sometimes if the division between the Labour and membership and its elected officials is as great as that of the Tory party.

You can't help thinking thta Labour might as well instead of having leadership elections among its members . instead hold it among the Media Barons with Mr Murdoch (wh would be a Lord if not a US citizen) having the final say.

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