So we’re going to have an election after all. I didn’t think we’d get one. I wonder what changed Jeremy Corbyn’s mind? Perhaps it was that John Bercow wasn’t sitting in the Speaker’s chair in Parliament yesterday.
I’ve been watching Nigel Farage on LBC quite a lot recently. He’s been predicting an early election, and he was right about that. Here he is talking yesterday:
Most of the show is given over to taking phone calls from listeners. And that’s one of the things that’s remarkable about Nigel Farage: he listens to people. He seems to listen all the time. He says that when he goes to his local supermarket to buy something, people stop and talk to him. He’s always talking to people, and usually listening. He must have talked to millions of people over his political lifetime. And that’s why he has such a good grasp of how the British people think. Is there another politician like him? I can’t think of one.
I read somewhere recently that he was the most significant politician in Britain today. And I think that’s true. If Britain voted for Brexit, it’s thanks to Nigel. I don’t think it would have happened otherwise. And I don’t think we’d be having an election in a month or so if it weren’t for him. And yet he’s not even an MP. He hasn’t even got a knighthood or anything either. He’s just an MEP in the European parliament.
And it’s not as if he’s a great speaker. He speaks very simply. He makes his points clearly. Everybody can understand him.
What a contrast with Boris Johnson. our classically educated Prime Minister. Boris can (and does) quote Latin texts. He can almost certainly quote Greek texts as well. He’s written a lot of books ranging over many subjects. And he’s a journalist. And he’s now the most recognisable politician in Britain. He’s got his own unique Boris brand. He’s witty and erudite. I can’t think of any Prime Minister in the past century like him, except Winston Churchill.
But does Boris listen to people like Nigel does? I doubt it. I think he’s more interested in his own opinions than other people’s.
Nigel has said that he wants an alliance with Boris at the next election. He says that the Conservatives would win a large majority in an alliance. Without an alliance, the Brexiter vote is likely to be split between the Conservative party and the Brexit party.
But Boris doesn’t seem interested. He seems to be looking for a purely Conservative party victory. Perhaps he doesn’t like the idea of Nigel in his cabinet.
I’ve no idea what will happen in the election. But I think that the British people have been getting angrier and angrier, and they’re likely vote out the current inmates of Parliament en masse. But I could be wrong. In fact, I probably am.
One last thought. Nigel sticks up for smokers. I saw him speak at Stony Stratford. And he went back several times to ensure that no street smoking ban was introduced there. But while Boris doesn’t smoke, he once sent me (or his parliamentary secretary sent me) a large cigar. So I suspect that Boris isn’t an antismoker. And having two of the principal actors in modern British politics not being bullying progressives might be a good sign. Maybe one or other of them might do something for Britain’s persecuted smokers that previous Conservatives have not?