The Dogs in the Street Know 288

There are some very obvious facts in British politics which nobody seems to be saying.

Joanna Cherry stated in her successful court case that “the dogs in the street know” that the real reason that Boris Johnson had prorogued parliament was to prevent parliament from having an effective say on the outcome of Brexit. The documents that the government was forced to produce to the Scottish Courts proved beyond any shadow of a doubt that was indeed Johnson’s motive.

So why are we expected to believe that what you knew and I knew, what Joanna Cherry knew, what the very dogs in the street knew, was not known to the Queen? Do we really believe that the Queen was “misled” and that she and her courtiers were the only people in the entire country who actually believed that Johnson just wanted the longest prorogation for 89 years to prepare a really good Queen’s speech? Are we really expected to believe that the Queen had not noticed that Brexit was at a crucial stage and the effect that prorogation would have on parliament’s say in the process?

This is obviously complete and utter nonsense. The Queen has better sources of information than any of us and knew exactly what was happening. She was not “misled” by Boris Johnson, she was his ally in a common purpose. She absolutely understood both the context and the effect of the prorogation. All this utter nonsense about the Queen being “lied to” and “misled” is part of this strange myth of the ultimate goodness of authority which is a recurring theme in human societies. Peasants died under the knout while building the Trans-Siberian railway thinking “if only the good Tsar knew.” The Queen is not a naive figure of Christ like innocence taken in by Boris Johnson, she is an ultra wealthy woman of very conservative views embedded in a social circle dominated by very rich and reactionary people.

To repeat what I have repeatedly explained, it was unconstitutional for the Queen to appoint Boris Johnson in the first place when it was plain as a pikestaff that he could not command a parliamentary majority. That initial crime (and I use the word advisedly) was compounded by the decision to prorogue parliament to enable her no majority Prime Minister to govern. In a sane world we should be getting out the pitchforks. Instead people are tut-tutting about the poor Queen being misled.

The next fact that is plain as a pikestaff is that Tom Watson is seeking to throw the election. One of the few true things Boris Johnson said in his knockabout performance in Parliament’s last sitting was that there were some on the Labour benches who were worried that Labour might win the next election.

Make no mistake, the Tories are in trouble. They need to pile on millions of votes in Northern English Labour constituencies before they actually start to win any, and they have thrown away existing liberal Tory support in London and southern England in order to pursue that goal. First Past the Post is very capricious, and once the leading party falls to 35% results become fickle even where there is a decent plurality. Regional concentration is actually an advantage in FPTP and in effect the Tories are in danger of evening out their support across England too much. They will certainly be down to a maximum of two seats in Scotland. They will have large losses to Labour and Lib Dems in London and the South West. All that is before we get in to the campaigning period and Jeremy Corbyn’s ability to solidify the Labour vote.

So with the prorogation row, the parliamentary defeats, the lost court cases and the Yellowhammer documents, Boris Johnnson was looking on sticky ground. The Labour Party had finally arrived at an apparently workable stance on Brexit: a general election followed by a second EU referendum with options of a viable deal and remain. Jeremy Corbyn, who had succeeded in helping build an opposition consensus on parliamentary tactics, has been looking in his strongest position for some time.

At this crucial moment enter Tom Watson with an entirely uncalled for intervention before a luvvies conference on the creative industries, trailed for all it was worth by the Blairite publicity machine. It was boosted to all the media specifically as Tom Watson taking on Jeremy Corbyn, and given wall to wall media coverage, carried live on the major broadcast news channels. What Watson had to say was simply a reiteration of Tony Blair’s article in the Evening Standard three days earlier; that there should be an EU referendum before a General Election.

What was the point of this Watson intervention? The first thing to say is that the real point was not the apparent purpose stated in the speech. Tom Watson knows full well there is no chance whatsoever of a new EU referendum ahead of a general election. The current parliament will never agree it. The expelled Tory rebels were almost all supporters of May’s deal and have almost all specifically ruled out a second referendum. At least 30 Labour MPs, led by figures like Stephen Kinnock, John Mann and Caroline Flint, would not agree to it. The DUP would never agree. It is a complete non-starter.

Why then would Watson deliver it? And not just deliver it quietly as a think piece, but deliver it with all the media hullabaloo that could possibly be mustered? The answer is quite simple. At Blair’s behest, Watson did it quite simply to damage Corbyn. At a time when the government was in deep trouble, when Corbyn had just addressed the TUC conference to applause with a finally coherent Brexit position, Watson’s aim was simply to damage Corbyn.

Watson sought to damage Corbyn in two ways. To damage him by staking out a more extreme Remainer position that might put a wedge between Corbyn and the new expanded Labour Party membership. And to damage Corbyn by giving headlines about Labour splits, taking the heat off the Tories and cutting at Labour’s standing in the polls just as it looked set to improve.

Because the one thing the Blairites detest most of all is the prospect of a Labour victory and a Corbyn government, implementing comparatively left wing policies that might prove popular and cause a real change in political discourse in England and Wales. Because that would be the death knell for the Blairites and their corporate sponsors.

Just as we are supposed to believe that the Queen is a naive waif innocent of Johnson’s schemes, we are supposed not to notice that Tom Watson seeks to damage Labour and ensure Corbyn does not come to power. We live in times when the media and the political class inhabit a world of polite pretence; a world where outsiders like me have a duty to point to the actual glaring facts, whether people listen or no.


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288 thoughts on “The Dogs in the Street Know

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  • Gary

    Watson, Starmer and others in the PLP are, and have been, utterly LIVID at Corbyn’s election as their leader. Fair means, foul means and utterly despicable means have been employed by them to oust him and then, unbelievably, to bring their own party into SUCH disrepute that it is now unelectable. They have made personal accusations against Corbyn, accusations, mostly unfounded, of endemic anti-Semitism in the party and they have colluded with the right-wing press to do so. They are, in this, worse than the Tories. I have never seen members of a party behave like this. Not only is it the tail trying to wag the dog but they now have no connection to the party, they SHOULD leave. They do not believe in Labour principles or policies.

    Labour SHOULD have stick with their existing policy on Brexit rather than play to the gallery. what is killing them in the English heartlands is that Brexit voting Labour people are feeling betrayed, and understandably.

    Because of this Boris looks like he has a clear uncomplicated idea of what to do, thus making him popular with the electorate. Voters in England have always been less reticent to switch their votes to Tory in any case and unless Watson et al are somehow taken out of the equation Boris could actually garner a majority at the upcoming GE, whenever that is!

    Boris DOESN’T however have a clear policy. Saying you’re going to do something is not the same as being ABLE to do it. Don’t get me wrong, he COULD have us leave on 31st October. It’s not whether he can do this, it’s how far he’s willing to go to achieve this aim that I question. This would DEFINTELY involve breaking conventions and probably involve breaking the law (and that’s me being charitable to him) I firmly believe that the establishment will shy away from calling a sitting PM a liar and forcing him to overturn his prorogation however. But on that point, what IS the point anymore of the prorogation? It is now serving no purpose. The opposition grouping managed to get their legislation through on both the ‘pre-drafted letter’ to be delivered and also the publication of Operation Yellowhammer documents. The very BEST he can hope for is that we leave on 31st October rather than 31st January. Is breaking the law and ignoring what we laughingly call a constitution worth it?

    Whatever happens I think people on all sides would agree that NOW is the time we should actually have a proper set of rules and a written constitution. We must finally decide who has the last word. It is a grey area. The Queen ‘always’ accepts the advice of her PM but yet she officially has the last word and ‘could’ refuse. But when did a monarch last refuse a PM? I really don’t know. I do know that there have been many occasions when PMs have sailed close to the wind on whether they were acting morally or legally in such matters.

    But the prorogation, should the action at the Supreme Court find against Boris, will end. But this will mean the ENTIRE prorogation will end. No break for conference season. Meaning Labour will genuinely have problems getting their act together on support for any policy change on Brexit etc. And THAT could hurt Labour more than the Tories. Be careful what you wish for…

  • Rhys Jaggar

    There are plenty of people who are not innocent waifs Mr Murray. Not all of them are Conservatives or Blairites.

    1. Olly Robbins (I refuse to address him as Sir Oliver unless the citation were for ‘services to the unprincipled undermining of representative democracy’) has been knighted and showered with vampire squid millions for being an unelected, unaccountable traitor to UK democracy. He had no mandate whatever to undermine Brexit, as he did with unprincipled alacrity whilst being paid by the very taxpayers who voted to Leave.

    If I were PM, I would hang him from Admiralty Arch and damn the consequences. It is about time the Civil Service learned to behave…..I suspect if I called an election soon after his execution I would be overwhelmingly returned as Prime Minister….because the public are sick and tired of unelected bureaucrats thinking they rule without accountability….

    2. Keir Starmer and Emily Thornberry.

    Both campaigned tirelessly to reverse the Referendum result after being elected on a manifesto honouring the Brexit result. Both should repay all their income and pension contributions to the taxpayer since the 2017 GE as they have committed electoral fraud.

    If they did not understand that Leave means Leave, they are too mentally subnormal to be MPs, let alone QCs or Opposition Front Benchers. If they knew full well what it means but committed electoral perjury, they have no place in Parliament and must repay their salaries and more. It might teach lying politicians what consequences are…..the same could be said about a few dozen more MPs….

    I do hope Mr Murray, that you will not complain when a legitimate vote of Scots to leave the UK is prevented by unprincipled Unionists. I will have no sympathy for you, because your principles are too situationally flexible.

    An unrepresentative 650 people who do not reflect electoral wishes have behaved with impunity. You start getting narked that those trying to deliver for the majority use shenanigans. The Remainers have used shenanigans since before 2016. But apparently shenanigans are OK from people who you agree with.

    If you wanted Referenda to be respected in Scotland, start by respecting those voted for in England.

    If you would be so good……

    • RandomComment

      Good post. There are far too many people out there who think democracy is only democracy if it agrees with their own agenda.

      • jake

        When you say “far too many people” are you talking about an insignificant minority, a significant minority or something quite different?

      • Tony

        As an aside, every time I have tried to post anything on social media about Keir Starmer’s borderline criminality in the Ian Tomlinson case, or his personally malicious prosecution of Paul Chambers, it has been deleted within minutes. He clearly receives the highest protection from The Establishment. How long was it, after he was parachuted into the PLP before he got into high placement on the front bench? Quite remarkable!

          • Tony

            Starmer had more than a part it the persecution, Sandra. He led the UK end of it as boss of the CPS. When Swedish prosecutors talked about dropping the rape case, it was Starmer’s department that convinced them not do so.

            Starmer is thoroughly unsavoury Deep State gimp.

          • Borncynical

            And it was Starmer who on BBC’s Question Time supported calls to bomb Syria for [unproven] use of chemical weapons. As a QC he was more than happy to ignore the principle of innocent until proven guilty. Appalling man.

          • michael norton

            Julian Assange to stay in prison over absconding fears.
            Julian was due to be released on 22 September 2019
            after serving his sentence for breaching bail conditions.

            But Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard there were “substantial grounds” for believing he would abscond again.

      • Cynicus

        “Nail. Head. Square hit, Rhys.”
        At first sight I thought that was an offensive comment on the shape of his head as revealed in the avatar!

        His “argument”- if that’s what it is, is one with which I have been in agreement almost since day one after the referendum.

        Until today.

        Even though I was a remainer-indeed a long-term champion of euro federalism and a United States of Europe, inspired by Monet and Schumann.

        But after the referendum I accepted the result had to be delivered. I had nothing but contempt for my fellow remainers who argued to the contrary, whose championship of their/my cause seemed to trump any respect for democratic process.

        But today that all changed. I have long known that the Irish backstop was essential to avoid providing murderous republican terrorists with an excuse to resume activities that the peace process ended.

        But that was always a one-dimensional analysis. It failed to take into account the worldview of loyalist terrorism. The DUP and Eileen Foster have long known that the backstop, if instituted, would lead to a resumption of loyalist murder and mayhem And possibly their own eclipse as a political force.

        That is the significance of the deal done between Ms Foster and BoJo the Crook this afternoon – a partial backstop in the Irish Sea, hopefully sufficient to stave off loyalist Terrorism and to buy off Ms Foster .

        There is only one conclusion to be drawn from this: the problem is not the backstop – which will cause mayhem either way if implemented.

        It is with Brexit itself. It was a fucking stupid decision, even if democratically consulted.

        It’s implementation will lead to a resumption of a bombing campaign by one party or another – possibly on the territory of the 90,000 “Gammons” who put Boris Johnson in power. Possibly intelligence to that effect is in possession of both the government and Miss Foster.

        • Northern

          And you started out so well.

          At some point the Irish people are going to wake up and realise the EU has taken them for an absolute ride; they’ve just been used as an instrument to blunt the apparently English demand for greater democracy and nothing more. All those multinationals stashing their profits in Dublin won’t last forever, and what’s to stop you going the way of the Greeks then if Brussels deems it necessary?

          I would add I’d be supportive of referendums on Irish unity and Scottish independence as I believe in self determination for all people, so please don’t mistake me for some flag waving unionist here either, I just see the Irish issue as being somewhat short sighted and exaggerated, depending on which aspects you’re discussing.

          • Royd

            ‘…they’ve just been used as an instrument to blunt the apparently English demand for greater democracy and nothing more.’

            That sentence makes me suspect that you fail to understand the Republican position as regards the backstop. It has nothing to do with the English nor the EU – it is all about the Irish identity and the freedom of those who believe in a united Ireland to pass from north to south without hindrance. To take that away risks a return to the savage days of ‘the troubles’. The world doesn’t revolve around little England.

    • Ultraviolet

      “If they did not understand that Leave means Leave, they are too mentally subnormal to be MPs”

      Anyone who still thinks “leave means leave”, and still does not understand that “leave” means any one of a wide spectrum of possible different arrangements with the EU is too mentally subnormal to be commenting on the issue. No deal, May’s deal, a Labour Brexit, Canada, Switzerland, Norway, something bespoke, what the hell was it that leave voters were voting for?

      Remain lost to everyone’s fantasy version of what leave would mean. If remain was pitched against a single, real, achievable version of leave, there is every reason to believe that remain would win. It MIGHT not. But that is why leave voters should have the chance to say, “if that is what leaving means, then actually I would prefer to remain after all”; or conversely remain voters should have the chance to say, “if that is what leaving means, then actually I would prefer to leave after all”.

      The essential thing is that the leave option on the table should be a Labour Brexit, not a Tory Brexit.

      • Tony

        Bullshit. Cameron’s government made it absolutely 100% clear that voting leave meant leaving the free market and leaving the customs union. This is a hard brexit. Full stop. Any negotiations about the future relationship beyond this put us in EXACTLY the position the current government wants to put us in.

        Jeezus H Christ!!! Remainers and truth! Talk about distant cousins!

        • simo

          Wake up littleTony, wake up! 100% clear? My question to you is why do all Leavers appear so angry and is anger a good way to promote our future both as a nation and, more importantly, as a species that are having such a disastrous impact on our planet. x

          • Tony

            We are angry at the shenanigans by remain politicians and the constant stream of lies by their remain followers in support, small simo. I could never have imagined that our already seriously flawed political system could have sunk so much further and so quickly into the gutter. But, thanks to remain, it has.

        • Neil

          “Cameron’s government made it absolutely 100% clear”

          The Leave Campaign made it 100% clear that there would be unicorns and cake for everyone. No one mentioned food shortage and lack of medicine. The referendum was won by liars.

          • Deb O'Nair

            “There won’t be food shortage, nor will there be a lack of medicine.”

            Thanks for clearing that one up. One can only assume that those people who say so are expressing an ideological belief asserted in the face of rational pragmatism, unlike you.

          • Tony

            Actually, I believe what the boss of the French channel ports authority, Jean-Marc Puissesseau, has told us, who has quite unequivocally described the claims you support as politically-motivated bullshit. He has also unequivocally stated that the ports will be operating just as normally the day after brexit as the day before.

            Now, who to believe about what’s going to happen at the ports after brexit? British NHS doctors? British food associations? British civil servants? Or the people who actually operate the ports? Tough one, that!!!

          • Deb O'Nair

            “described the claims you support”

            Where in my post have I supported any claims? I was pointing out the claims you support without evidence or knowledge and contrary to the many people who have no (apparent) vested interest in pointing out something that may very well happen.

          • Tony

            “Where in my post have I supported any claims? I was pointing out the claims you support without evidence or knowledge and contrary to the many people who have no (apparent) vested interest in pointing out something that may very well happen.”

            “Thanks for clearing that one up. One can only assume that those people who say so are expressing an ideological belief asserted in the face of rational pragmatism, unlike you.”

            Do try harder.

          • Tony

            Oh dear! You don’t even understand what you yourself wrote! I made it simple for you by putting your two contradictory replies together. I can’t help you any more than that without getting into a very long-winded ‘colouring book’- type explanation.

          • Northern

            No, you believe what the media has spent the last few months telling you. You can only know something you have relevant experience of.

            Like I said to another poster on here last week, remember all those Diabetics who died last year when French customs went on strike and caused 5/6 days worth of delays at Calais-Dover? No?…Remember all the rioting at supermarkets and empty shelves? No?…

        • Ultraviolet

          Right, so, to summarise your argument.

          The Remainers said leaving the EU meant leaving the single market and the customs union. The Leave camp said this was Project Fear, what’s wrong with Norway etc.

          So when leave voters voted leave, they believed the Remain camp were telling the truth, and were voting for that. They believed the leave camp were lying to them when they said the Remain camp were lying, and were voting against the form of Brexit the Leave camp said they would get.

          Thanks for clearing that up.

    • IrishU

      The only possible excuse for posting such a load of nonsense is that you didn’t stop drinking when the plates were removed at the end of lunch.

      Hanging a civil servant? A traitor to democracy?

      You have lost the run of yourself.

    • Mary Pau!

      Lionel Shriver has a very good piece in her column in this weeks Spectator (worth buying for her column alone) about how the Americans are honouring the result of their election however unpalatable many people find it. No calls so far for a rerun because Trump supporters were too thick to understand what they were voting for.

      I regularly travel around southern and eastern England and it is very difficult to put into words how truly different they are from London, which is like a great city state and melting pot, floating free from the rest of the UK. There seems very little point of connection. It must have been like this when the Victorian age was at its zenith.

  • Crispa

    This is a great post, and as ever makes one think. My problem is that although the dogs in the street might know, my sleeping rescue greyhounds do not seem to, and they include one, who has certainly been on the street. So, I still remain to be convinced about the part played by the Queen other than to think, as I have done most of my life, how stupid the idea of the monarchy is and the sooner we get rid the better. As for Tom Watson, who takes any notice any more of why he is saying what he says, and Jeremy Corbyn has just brushed him off as if swatting a fly. As it happens, I think there is merit in what Watson is proposing along with Blair, and it is the underlying ideas that should be discussed i.e. (i) Keep Brexit and domestic issues separate for electoral purposes and (ii) Sort Brexit out with a referendum before a GE.

  • Tony

    And yet again Craig gets himself into a muddle over the current palava. He continues to claim that BoJo should never have been allowed to form a government, then points out that the parliamentary Blairite scum will never allow Corbyn to form a government. So, who exactly, has the right to form a government, Craig? The correct answer, of course, is that we need a general election urgently to answer this question. But the REAL coupmeisters are scared to death of this. They need to take full control of legislative procedure, and to set their own agenda, with their own new referendum with it’s Hobson’s Choice of voting options. This is the REAL coup, and it’s the coup to stop the electorate choosing between BoJo and Corbyn.

  • fedup

    I believe Queen was misled, I believe she never farts, and never poos, and is made of divine spark stuff and don’t mean the sparkle of her diamonds and gemstones mind. I am a lunatic, and a simpleton to boot. That also wishes to enrol in Harry Potter school of ……………….. you get the drift.

    Spot on Craig, BTW not being pedantic/spelling police but (here it goes):

    “Just was we are supposed to believe that the Queen is a naive waif innocent of Johnson’s schemes….”

    Shouldn’t it be “as” instead of “was”.

    • Tatyana

      In our world, academician Sakharov, who invented the hydrogen bomb, received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975, the prize named after the man who invented dynamite.
      Why do you think that all the other things in your life will suddenly obey different laws?
      Whatever you think, the people who can enrich more people and bring them profit, those get the most recognition. But the honest selfless altruists.

      • Tatyana

        When you’ll find yourself in shortage of normal natural food, or fresh water, or gasoline allowing you to reach your dear ones, you’ll find the cause of the problems in the russkies, in the chinese, in the stupid feminists, in building extra toilets for newly-invented genders, in gay people, in black people, in migrants – everywhere but in the elites which encouraged, and developed, and created all that division in the people.
        You will find a thousand different reasons, but you will not see the main one – who wins.

        The elites who can play your daily needs with one movement of their little finger, and who point the enemy for you, because they themselves are secured from those artrocities, and this is not even the question of survival for them, but keeping on the good common job 🙂

  • Ultraviolet

    I share your view that where this all went pear-shaped was the Queen appointing as PM someone who did not have the confidence of the House. I believe the only proper constitutional approaches then would have been either to refuse to appoint Johnson until he had won a vote of confidence, or to appoint him on condition that he won one within, say, a week or he would be sacked.

    Where I differ from you is in my interpretation of the Queen’s behaviour. I think the Queen’s driving motivation is to avoid being seen doing something overtly political, because doing so will imperil the monarchy. The positive action of refusing to appoint Johnson, or appointing him only provisionally, would have been immediately and incontrovertably deeply political. Appointing him and leaving it to Parliament to sort him out could well have been considered the least risky option for the survival of the monarchy.

    Similarly with prorogation, refusing to follow the advice of her Prime Minister would have been an unprecedented and deeply political act, however justified.

    Bottom line, however, is that Johnson has politicised the monarchy, because any decision the Queen makes, to follow the advice of this PM or not to do so, is a deeply divisive political decision.

    As a result, Johnson may go down in history as the man who triggered both the break-up of the United Kingdom and the abolition of the monarchy. Not bad for a staunchly Unionist, monarchist Conservative politician.

  • Peter

    Watson looks a very worried man these days. I can’t help wondering if somebody has him by the b***s. There are a number of reports around that Blair and Mandelson are pulling the strings of the Remainer campaign. Who might be pulling their strings?

    There’s much to ponder here.

    Thank you once again Mr Murray.

  • Hatuey

    Craig is blazing a trail with this. I have a sense that there’s a lot more to this story than we know but they’re closing it down as we speak. It’s extremely sinister. Something really stinks here.

    All roads lead to The City and The City is as sinister as you get. It’s the the thing that connects all of these people. It’s the thing that explains Brexit.

    Normally we’d follow the money, but that’s just the thing — we can’t. Everything is layered and rests on anonymity when it comes to The City. And that’s the way they want to keep it. No, more than that, it’s the way they need to keep it.

    Imagine we found out what sort of money they had hidden offshore, what sort of unethical businesses they were investing in, and how much tax they were avoiding.

    The Lisbon Treaty made a couple of vague allusions to reforming offshore practices, one of which was a suggestion that anonymity must end, and the panic bells have been ringing ever since.

    • RandomComment

      Personally I’m still waiting for Craig to blaze a trail on the EU’s stated intention, (and on-going preparations towards) to create a single military command and control structure among the member states. When young Scottish people get drafted, I will weep only a little.

      • Hatuey

        The UK has pledged to support that, with money, after brexit. And it’s not like you’d be expected to know about this stuff, but the fact is that the US has been supportive of the idea too.

        Your mistake is to look at the world in 20th century terms, us v them, “they bombed our chippy”, etc., when in actual fact there’s a lot more transnational cooperation going on between western elites than division.

        That is something that might actually be worth worrying about rather than the absurd and childish suggestion that the EU aspires to compete with the US and/or Britain in military terms in some sort of re-run of WWII.

        BTW, if Trump appears to represent some sort of break from the norm of high level and deep cooperation between Europe and the US when it comes to security and other important stuff, and I don’t think he does in any important sense, he would at best represent an exception that proves the rule.

        The rule or norm since 1945, is total collusion and cooperation amongst Western countries on the world stage. Moreover, in terms of economics, it is actually no longer possible to distinguish meaningfully between European and American banks and businesses. Even China owns massive chunks of the US economy. It simply wasn’t like that before 1945.

        I think you need a firmware update.

        • RandomComment

          The US is interested in supporting a parallel pan-european military structure to NATO? Please cite 😉

          At least you appear to agree that the EU wants it’s own army, unlike Ian

          • Hatuey

            The US was pretty keen on the WEU playing a “separable but not separate” role alongside NATO in the 1990s. But NATO isn’t what people think it is.

      • Deb O'Nair

        “single military command and control structure among the member states.”

        Instead of being reliant on the US/UK (read unpredictable, aggressive and anti-EU) controlled NATO.

    • Heartsupwards

      I seems that not enough media luminaries have made any inroads on the story of tax avoidance of London and the new EU laws that supposedly came into being in April 2019, about rounding up the tax avoiders and taxing them for the correct amounts, while closing the avoidance loopholes. I suspect that this forthcoming law was the instigation of puppet Cameron’s action of an EU Referendum in the first instance. Imagine the bloodletting that could have been happening had London’s tax haven been closed.

    • Laguerre

      People being in contempt of Parliament is indeed Bercow’s business, even if it’s the government that’s doing it.

  • michael55

    Does anyone really take anything Tom Watson says with any seriousness. It strikes me that he deliberately endorsed the tales of Carl Beech to put seeds of doubt into the minds of the public for any other current or future claims of paedophilia regarding the establishment. It certainly has a smell of Mandelson and Blair pulling his strings.

    Brexit has to be delivered to uphold the referendum vote. It really is as simple as that and I find someone like Emily Thornberry completely repulsive to come out with something as utterly preposterous as saying that she will try to get a deal and then campaign to remain. That explains why we are still no further forward after three years.

  • Mist001

    Maybe all the security measures that were put in place around Westminster after the 2017 London Bridge attacks weren’t to prevent terrorist attacks but rather, to stop tanks rolling in because the UK seems ripe for that now.

  • Tom

    Great piece. I smelt a rat about Tom Watson’s intervention too – extraordinary behaviour. The odd thing about Watson is he used to seem quite sound. Maybe I’m being too suspicious, and doing Watson a disservice, but I can’t help thinking he has been ‘lent on’ after the Beech scandal.
    Whatever the truth about Watson, there has definitely been some kind of fifth column in Labour working for the Tories. I’d hoped it had been flushed out with Change UK, and Mann and Hoey’s upcoming departures but perhaps not.

    • Smiling Through

      Sadly, Tom, much of the Fifth Column remains, and in influential positions.

      The chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP), John Cryer, is married to Ellie Reeves MP, sister of Rachel Reeves MP, both strong in their support of Israel,

      Ruth Smeeth is a vice-chair of the PLP.

      Tom Watson’s close friend Stephanie Peacock took over the Barnsley East seat from Israel-supporting Corbyn critic Michael Dugher.

    • Deb O'Nair

      “I smelt a rat about Tom Watson’s intervention too – extraordinary behaviour.”

      Well, John McDonnell was doing the media circuit Wednesday and yesterday. It does not take too much nouse to understand that those appearances are booked up in advance. Watson’s speech was timed so that rather than talk about Labours monetary and economic policies McDonnell was having to sit through interview after interview batting away questions of Labour disunity.

  • Tom

    As to the Queen’s role – no, of course she was not ‘misled’. She has a whole team of advisers and experts to guide her. The idea she would take Johnson’s word for anything is laughable.
    No, the whole uproar is an attempt to distance the monarchy from the Johnson regime and also, possibly, as some kind of ‘Aunt Sally’ to stop the public talking about more crucial angles to the story.

  • Dungroanin

    Thank you CM – as THEY remove their velvet gloves it is apt to get vigorous. Your well judged jab hits the mark.

    I’m not fully convinced that the likes of Kinnock and the tory no referendum rebels are also not playing a role – the coup is possible with them being put in charge by hmq as the ‘backstop’ with cuddly Ken as a ‘honest broker’.

    Hilariously Polly Toynbee suddenly discovered that it was the TORIES under Heath enrolled us into the EU after a decade of being vetoed by De Gaulle; but in her newfound history she failed to note it was Wilsons Labour who offered a confirmatory vote. Or that the issue of sovereignty ‘surrender’ was made clear by the top judge before that referendum, Lord Denning and the future plans of ever closer union were road mapped explicitly and we agreed to strive to achieve these goals!

    Yesterday Merkel too, finally shot with the truth right between the eyes.

    That speech appeared and disappeared in a blink and is not being addressed by the media or the government!

    Most honest politicians in the rest of the world get imprisoned or blackmailed or killed.
    In the west they are ridiculed, defamed- and occasionally imprisoned and very occasionally also assassinated. Very very occasionally they get elected! And the Corbynites are closer by the day – hence the cheating and dirty fighting to stop that at all costs.

    THEY are the DS who are Murder Inc and work globally – they are the natural careers for age old martial families who never had a generation without service to the realm (which has never been a naive monarchy).

    They ARE the few and they hide in plain sight and they don’t care what we believe.
    They will strike us down as hard and fast as they always did. It used to be horses, swords then tear gas and rubber and real bullets, now the msm, next it will be instant financial control and access to our personal records. Wired reported that the Government has fast tracked a high speed data connection between the various databases which traditionally have been kept separate – why?

    Only to be able to be able do real time mass scale control is my guess.

    Yup it’s time to take the blows and resist as more of us dogs in the street will do.

  • Willie

    Can’t disagree with the logic that the spin now being spun is that the Queen is some kind of stick puppet who was misled by a big bad Boris.

    This after all is a woman who comes from one of the worlds most right wing, super wealthy families who has the experience of over sixty years a reigning monarch. With a family who have a history of sexual exploitation and underage sex, our Queen now sits as a virtue of ignorance and benevolence.

    And pigs, royal pigs at that fly. This right wing piece of unelected hereditary excrement knew exactly what she was doing, when she suspended Parliament. She knew exactly what impact stopping MPs debating, examining and passing laws was. The slag ain’t no democrat and then some. Time, like her Tsar cousins, that she joins them.

  • Adrian Hart

    ‘There are some very obvious facts in British politics which nobody seems to be saying.’

    Craig (or anyone who remembers Tony Benn and what the left used to think): Yes, its a dirty war that’s for sure (although some think the tinkering with parliamentary rules of Bercow and others is fine!), but – to reference Benn – are not the people sovereign? Is it not the *people* who loan it to parliament from one session to the next? Is it not the case that a referendum (agreed by parliament) producing a result (also agreed by parliament) and an action (parliament agreeing to the triggering Article 50) amounts to an instruction to government? How can it be anything other than anti-democratic to argue that parliament can thwart this process? (and, if parliament/LP were to succeed in this, a hammer bow to democratic engagement).

    • Mary Pau!

      Surely the Speaker is supposed to be the leading Commoner and uphold the people’s will in Parliament? I can see that he would wish to prevent the law being broken, but how does he square his support for the Remain view with the result of the Referendum?

  • Alan Tattersall

    In 1975 the Queen through her proxy the Governor General of Auhstralia sacked the elected Prime Minister Gough Whitlam even though he had a majority in the House of Representatives (House of Commons). The GG then appointed the Leader of the Opposition as Prime Minister and prorogued Parliament. Parliament was prorogued because the new PM did not have a majority in the House of Representatives and would have immediately lost a vote of no confidence. Proroguing parliament prevented that. The Queen was fully informed and aware of these actions by her GG.

    The Queen is legally entitled to dismiss the PM and appoint a new PM. Johnson has manifestly lied to the Queen and does not have a majority in the House of Commons. Even as a committed Republican I say she should act. Unless, of course, as you postulate she also approved this deceit.

  • N_

    I mentioned that the Yellowhammer document doesn’t say anything about airports, even if several in both Britain and France have been taken down in obvious cyberattacks and it is not at all clear what arrangements there will be for air travel to and from Britain in the event of a crashout Brexit. (There have also been unexplained chemical incidents on the British coast, and a mysterious illness is killing dogs in Norway.)

    Well today two men, described as belonging to “Heathrow Pause”, supposedly a “splinter” from the well-funded Steinerite front “Extinction Rebellion”, have been arrested for conspiring to bring down Heathrow airport using drones.

    If these nutters, with a little bit of help, can block London bridges, they can sabotage airports too.

    It’s all “for the environment”, you know, to “stop the big extinction”. Follow the rune. Alternatively, wake up.

    Expect more of the same, to boost the feeling that “the chaos must stop” and “Order must reign“. Not for nothing has Michael Gove helped out the Steinerite nutters, as have a number of Jacob Rees-Mogg’s family members too.

    Anybody who thinks green politicos swing to the left rather than the far right needs a whack round the head with a big stick in the hope that it might bring some sense to them. Tell them about Julius Evola’s radical traditionalism and Walther Darré?

    People might like to read up on “the true significance of Halloween” in Steinerite insanity. For them we’re not talking about trick or treat and all that Hollywood-promoting US stuff, nor the Celtic festival of Samhain either. We are talking about the eve of All Saints’ Day, itself followed by All Souls’ Day. Of course there is the Day of the Dead and there are candles in graveyards in many countries. The Steiner cultists put their own twist on this time of year, and – guess what – what they do plays to the underlying ideas that hold their cult together. We are talking about the “Tridum of Allhallowtide” lasting from 31 October to 2 November. One of their sites writes that “Each year, many communities connected with Anthroposophical studies host a very special evening on All Souls’ Day.”

    I wouldn’t book any flights through Heathrow or any other British airports on that day.

    • N_

      Apparently seven others were arrested yesterday, including the leading Steinerite “extinction” cultist Roger Hallam.

      It is not a coincidence that this is happening at this time, when it is touch and go whether the prime minister’s shutdown of Parliament is ruled unlawful, and as the possibility looms of the prime minister being jailed.

      Perhaps the next thing MI5 might like to attend to is the security risk represented by the activities of Eugenics Cummings.

  • N_

    I have to repeat this in one sentence: the use by government advisers of burner phones in the course of their work is a national security issue.

    C’mon, Jeremy, get on this.

  • TerryDaly

    ”Instead people are tut-tutting about the poor Queen being misled.”

    Give the poor aul’ dear a break craig, will you, she’s just spent the last few months dealing with a daily parade of journalists door stepping her home(s) looking for answers as to why her son was having minors trafficked into the country for sex orgies. Oh wait…….

    Question; When Scotland does become independent from English rule, should the north of England follow suit and divide the country? I’m thinking along the lines of a sovereign claim the north would have to all the newly discovered oil fields off their coast (with that recent maritime boundary change to spite Scotland before the Indyref)? Considering the treatment the north of England has received from their London rulers (like a stain on their underpants) I would suggest separation and self governance is also the way to proceed. Hell of a lot of money will be coming out of the ground soon. Why send it down south and off abroad to the Cayman Gotha Trust fund?

  • J Galt

    It’s been said many times before, however it needs to be said many times again,

    If in 2014 Scotland had voted 52% Yes/48% No, the SNP would have been outraged – rightly so – if three years later the pro-No MPs at Westminster were still using every underhand trick in the book to deny that democratic result.

    And yet here we have the SNP at the forefront of the increasingly desperate attempts to overturn Brexit. That is rank hypocrisy.

    Oh you might say – people were lied to in 2016 – so what, a unionist might say people were lied to in 2014 about the currency and oil revenues – who decides whose opinion of “Lies” is the correct one?

    But again “Scotland” didn’t vote for brexit one might say, however again so what – “Scotland” was not being asked, the UK was. If in our 2014 52% Yes scenario Orkney and Shetland or Dumfries and Galloway voted decisively NO would it have been ok for them to have seceded with the assistance of the remaining UK?

    What right have the SNP to insist that the result of any future Independence Referendum should be respected in these circumstances?

    • Neil

      The thing you forgot to mention is that what people voted for in the EU Referendum is not now on offer. Pretty sure if I sold you a Rolls Royce and delivered you a skoda, you’d ask for a refund.

      • J Galt

        Well what was on “offer”?

        In my recollection it was “leave” or “remain”.

        Leaving on WTO rules is as good a definition of “leave” as any as far as I can see.

          • Deb O'Nair

            As a metaphor I can pose a question to a smoker; “would you like to continue smoking or give up smoking?”. If the smoker says he would like to give up smoking I then have a “mandate” to shoot him in the head – thereby guaranteeing that he will never smoke again. Although this was probably not what the smoker intended I have “respected” his vote.

    • grafter

      To J.Galt above…………….”.Scotland” was not being asked, the UK was.” Come along now Mr Galt we in Scotland know the meaning behind that one. To translate, it really means that whatever England votes for Scotland must abide by decisions made south of Hadrian’s Wall. Quite frankly I’m sick to death of your “UK” branding of this electoral fix. We have had over 300 years of your political manoeuvrings and pilfering of our economy and resources. The English inspired shambles of Brexit marks the beginning of the end of this very unequal partnership, Best wishes for your dying imperial empire.

      • J Galt

        Sorry grafter – with respect I’m a life long (since I was about 12) Scottish Independence supporter resident in Scotland and well aware of perfidious Albion’s history.

        You can’t have your cake and eat it.

        If the result of the 2014 Referendum had gone our way 52/48 are you saying that the losing No camp would have been within their rights to use every means fair and foul of reversing it at Westminster?

  • Hatuey

    Nobody can convince me that riding roughshod over the EU referendum result represents anything other than an establishment coup and that doing so is disturbingly at odds with established “democratic” principles.

    Watching them tear Boris to pieces is gratifying, he’s a despicable liar, but there’s an alarm bell ringing in my head right now.

    I can easily imagine them using all these newly discovered democracy-thwarting powers against the Scottish independence movement. They’re openly talking about jailing Boris now and so we can assume they’d also jail SNP leaders or anyone without skipping a beat.

    For those of you who aren’t aware, Bercow came from the extreme right of the Tory party, an extreme that proposed openly to send Asians and other ethnic minorities home, if I remember correctly. Today he is heralded as a saint because he is serving the establishment’s purpose.

    We can complain and doubt Boris’s motives in proroguing Parliament, but if it suited the purpose of anti-Brexit establishment forces, we know they would prorogue it too.

    The most grave and worrying line crossed in all of this was the decision to allow Parliament to act as the executive in terms of introducing policy — with that our already flimsy and ill-defined constitution was effectively smashed to pieces. Nobody cares. I don’t. But maybe we should.

    What we are watching, then, is one group of unscrupulous bastards trying to get one over on another. It’s entertaining but when it’s impossible to tell what group is the more dishonest and treacherous, you really shouldn’t take sides.

    The SNP think they have a dog in this race but if they think that dog is going to carry them across the rubicon towards independence when the Brexit fight is over, they are as stupid and gullible as the fabled Ginger Bead Man who accepted a lift across the river from a fox.

    The British establishment is divided and at war with itself. Let it burn.

    • N_

      What we are watching, then, is one group of unscrupulous bastards trying to get one over on another. It’s entertaining but when it’s impossible to tell what group is the more dishonest and treacherous, you really shouldn’t take sides.

      Have you considered that the SNP leadership might also be a group of unscrupulous b*stards? Of course they are stupid. What local council in any country is led by people who are an intellectual match for those who run central government?

      • Hatuey

        As usual, you miss the point and are trying to reduce this to another blanket attack on Scottish people who want nothing more than to run their own affairs.

        For the record, I am under no illusions when it comes to politicians. The old maxim, that power should never be given to those who want it, holds as true today for me as it did 40 years ago when I first heard it.

        But when it comes right down to it, I’d rather have corrupt Scottish politicians governing over me in an independent country than corrupt English politicians doing so from afar.

        You’re another that needs a firmware update.

    • Yr Hen Gof

      Unbelievably Bercow is also being feted in what might be described as left wing Corbyn supporting groups.
      Suddenly he’s become a champion of what they see as parliamentary democracy, conveniently forgetting his flagrant abuse of expenses and his blocking of any investigation into house swapping of which he was a personal beneficiary.
      Some have even suggested that he might become a Labour M.P. and what a gift his Buckingham seat would be to the Labour party.
      Quite obviously none of them have the gift of critical thinking and neither are they resident in his constituency.
      When he steps down he’ll be replaced by a neoliberal Thatcherite, who’ll be enthusiastically endorsed and elected with a handsome majority.
      Whatever people think Bercow might be, Buckingham is Tory in tooth and claw and the Speaker by tradition stands unopposed.

    • J Galt

      Exactly – I think there is now zero chance of a narrow YES victory in a future referendum being respected- and expect no help from EU on whose behalf we are supposed to be on the barricades.

      • Hatuey

        Yes, I agree. But I think if there’s no deal and a lingering antagonism between the U.K. and EU, it’s possible the EU would be supportive.

        We are always waiting on something or someone with the SNP and Scottish independence. We seem to be institutionalised. That’s a choice in itself.

        This must be what it’s like trying to convince a battered wife that she’d get on fine without the prick in her life. And she just won’t listen.

  • Harry Hopkins

    Great article Craig. Tom Watson is and has been ever since his election as deputy leader, a Trojan horse with a remit to stop Jeremy Corbyn becoming PM. It’s frustrating for Corbyn supporters like me to accept that the party seems to allow his disgraceful behaviour and modus operandi to continue with nothing other than mild rebukes as typified by John McDonnel yesterday with the remarks: “Well, Tom will be Tom”. I do think however, that Watson is now so discredited that his days as an MP are numbered and it’s good to see that controversial character George Galloway stepping up to the plate.

    • N_

      Since there’s not much of an Asian pro-Brexit vote in West Bromwich East, I doubt Gorgeous will stand on a platform of “Vote for me if you want Brexit”. He could still put the Tory in, though, even if he wins only a few thousand votes.

      • Harry Hopkins

        Not sure I understand your ‘Asian pro brexit’ comment unless you are referring to Galloway’s time as MP for Bradford in which case it might be considered a cheap shot. West Bromwich voted to leave by 68% which puts Watson at odds with his electorate. It is a Labour voting constituency and might just be open to a successful challenge from Galloway on a pro brexit–pro Corbyn platform. As for your comment about “he could put the Tory in”, speaking as a democratic socialist and Corbyn supporter I see little difference between a Tory and Tom Watson. At least with a Tory what you see is what you get. If I were living in West Bromwich and the choice were between a Tory and Watson I’m afraid I would abstain! I could never vote for Watson.

        • N_

          George Galloway’s voter base is mainly comprised of British Asians. According to the census they are 43% of the population in his old seat of Bradford West and 14% in West Bromwich. British Asians mainly voted Remain, and they will mostly vote Remain again given the chance. Galloway is not a racist of any kind – like Jeremy Corbyn he has always opposed racism – but for most people “Brexit” is a codeword for White Power and this is well understood by many non-white people, as also are the real meaning stories about “knife crime in London” and much of what’s in the Sun. So he would really have his work cut out for him selling Brexit to his main voter base. I don’t think he’ll have much chance winning many votes from those among white British people in West Bromwich who in the past have voted Labour in general elections and who are strongly pro-Brexit and who voted Leave in the referendum and maybe one or more times for UKIP in EU elections.

          I take your point about Tom Watson. I am a socialist too and I would dearly like to see a Labour landslide convey Jeremy Corbyn into 10 Downing Street…but then one thinks of White Phosphorus Labour and…well…my stomach isn’t super-strong 100% of the time. I have to ask why on earth would I want people like Watson or members of the “Labour Friends” of a vile ultra-racist regime to be in the government. It’s not a nice thought. I don’t want them to be in the government. I hope the left purges them.

          I am expecting the swine to move against the leftwing hopes and “movement” that currently has Jeremy at its prow, and for them to do it some time between now and when the polling stations open for the next general election. It could be any time from now on. They will be told to do it when it has maximum impact. Their focus won’t be to do with the details of the best order in which a general election and a second EU referendum should be held, which may be of interest to readers of this blog and to those who like to point out contradictions and weaknesses in what politicians are saying in the current news cycle, but which the White Phosphorus boys and girls can’t pretend to think make for a really big issue. What they can pretend that about is anti-Semitism (watch John Mann confront Ken Livingstone – Mann was furious) – even if anti-Semitism doesn’t actually exist either in the Labour party or anywhere else on the left.

          • Harry Hopkins

            Good reply and thanks for taking the time. If Labour had been united at the last election then we would have won. The ‘Blairite’ contingent headed up by Mandelson (“we’re all Thatcherites now” and ” all of my waking hours will be spent in underming Corbyn”) need to be be purged as you say for come the next election Corbyn’s wonderful manifesto and transformational policies will never get an airing. I’m trying to be optimistic because Corbyn is a great electioneer and quite frankly a wonderful human being and is uncorruptable and this country so desperately needs him but his enemies both outside and inside Labour are mighty powerful. Still, I remain hopeful and do believe that working people the country over will decide to elect a democratic socialist government that will make such a huge difference to their lives.

  • Neil

    This seems credible, given Watson has spent his entire tenure as deputy leader undermining Corbyn and it would therefore cause him some embarrassment if Corbyn was shown to have been right all along.

    Another point, it does seem very strange that a political party ‘s deputy leader has spent his entire tenure undermining the leader. Can’t think of any instance in history or any other country where this has occurred. Strange state of affairs.

  • TerryDaly

    The queen has just approved rewarding another criminal with a ‘royal honour’. Which is nice….

    Doing up questions for a pub quiz; Is there any crime in UK law that has not been committed by someone who has subsequently gone on to receive an honour from the queen or predecessors?

    I’ll start the ball rolling with ‘sir’ Michael Fallon and drink driving.

    I’m almost certain slavery is in there, along with bestiality and sex trafficking……nice bunch…….theft, looting of nations type theft….95% sure….need a name or two to confirm. Anyone?

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