John’s Crystal Ball

John Booth, Going Postal

Recent History

Rev Dr Peter Mullen said recently:

“It’s countdown to Corbyn. We shall not be kept waiting for long before we find ourselves living under the most extreme left wing government Britain has ever seen. There will be wholesale nationalisation, massive borrowing and spending, the abolition of all pay restraint and an expanded benefits system.

Or will there?

Mrs May will not outline the virtues of capitalism and the free market – because she believes in neither. If she did, she would cut taxes and abolish strangulating business regulations. Instead since that terrible day she became prime minister, she has declared she is determined that the government will make even greater interventions in boardrooms, the minimum wage will be regularly increased and the cap on public sector pay will be scrapped.

Observing Corbyn’s army of snowflakes – all those innocent young people to whom he is promising the earth – May is promising today “to create a fairer society for the young.” But she can’t bribe them with a pint when Corbyn is offering them a firkin.

Why can’t she see that stealing the left’s political clothes will leave her dangerously undressed?

During last June’s election campaign a commentator remarked, only partly jesting, that Theresa May had “…adopted Ed Miliband’’s manifesto and moved it to the left.”

Well, since Dr Mullen wrote this, things have moved on apace.

Mrs May has continued to be a useless, vacuous, spineless, coward of a politician and Prime Minister while quietly continuing the blurring of lines between the so called Conservative Party and the Labour Party. Speeches are made, sound bites trotted out, awkward and embarrassing interviews are given accompanied by inaction across almost all Government departments. The Government and the country drifts rudderless and leaderless.

However, it is an awkward fact that we are getting used to it. Lack of leadership, inaction, and paralysis at the heart of Government is no longer a shock to political commentators, the MSM or the people. Surely then, a coup is coming? Surely, there are some ambitious Ministers and Conservative MPs putting together a plan to remove Mrs May? Surely the Chairman of the 1922 Committee, Sir Graham Brady already has enough ‘no confidence’ letters from Conservative MPs to trigger a leadership challenge? Why is May still there?

The answer is survival. Not of Mrs May, but of Tory MPs. With no

overall majority, the Tories are petrified of toppling May which will unleash a torrent of howling from Labour, Guardian, BBC, Sky, Blair, Campbell etc and every lefty in the universe which will cause a constitutional crisis and inevitably, another General Election which the Tories will lose. Up until very recently, I believe the Tories felt protected and safe because of the electorate’s fear of Jeremy Corbyn becoming Prime Minister. That is no longer the case. Things have changed.

Just look at the lack of traction in the Corbyn/Czechoslovakia spy story for example. Of course it’s being played down by the BBC/Guardian/Labour supporting media as smears and innuendo and we don’t know if there is any truth in the story. What we do know is that if were the other way around and there was a story that Mrs May had meetings with enemies of Britain, this same media would be all over it like a rash. (Incidentally, it does raise a point – Why has Corbyn been approached by so many groups or regimes that wish to do Britain and her people harm?)

Corbyn’s support appears to be solid. His supporters are extremists (Momentum) and ignorant, naïve fools (Millennials). Nothing will sway these people away from Corbyn and the Labour Party. Corbyn could assault an elderly person or even stab someone and these people would still support him and vote for him. Yet, Corbyn is untested, he has never actually run anything, he is not much of an achiever and he lacks gravitas and authority. He flip-flops on policy, is evasive and hard to pin down, if put on the spot he will often acquiesce to appease his own Party and he looks and sounds shifty. In other words, he is Mrs May with a beard. The tone and style is different, but like Mrs May he has not earned his position in his Party through achievements and his track record. He was put there by his Party and the Labour Party supporters because he is a ‘useful idiot’. They don’t know if he is really ‘up to the job’.

Similarly, Mrs May was put there by the Tory Party machine i.e. ‘big business’ as the most suitable candidate, pliant and easy to control. She was also untested, had never actually run anything, is not much of an achiever and lacks gravitas and authority. She also flip-flops on policy, is evasive and hard to pin down and similar to Corbyn, is a Conservative ‘useful idiot’. However, unlike Corbyn, the Tory party, indeed, the whole country, now knows she is definitely not up to the job. But she survives – for the moment.

The Crystal Ball – the medium term future

John Booth, Going Postal

We have two useless politicians heading up their Parties (I avoided the term ‘leading’ their Parties because that suggests they have leadership qualities which clearly, neither possess) with no obvious replacements lined up or jostling for position. It’s a stalemate, an uninspiring draw, a dreary, boring, crawl towards the next General Election. And that is when everything will change and yet nothing will change, as I will explain.

John Booth, Going Postal

Despite all the weaknesses and shortcomings described above, The Right Honourable Jeremy Corbyn MP will become Prime Minister. This will happen for certain at the May 2022 General Election. There is nothing Theresa May is able to do to reverse her awful image, lack of leadership, track record and general uselessness. There is nothing Jeremy Corbyn can do to reduce his support – it is built-in, it can only get stronger. Momentum now has a total grip on the Labour Party and Corbyn is the chosen stooge to deliver a ‘hard left’ Government. By 2022, there will be more Labour voters and fewer Conservative voters due simply to demographics and more Millennials getting the vote. There will also be more people dissatisfied with the performance of Mrs May and this drifting, rudderless Conservative Government. I don’t think it will be a massive Labour majority like the Blair landslide victory in 1997, I think it will be quite close, but still a majority and we will have to get used to the phrase, ‘Prime Minister Corbyn’.

Ah, but Brexit, what about Brexit, surely if she delivered a proper and complete Brexit this could be Mrs May’s chance to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat? Well, I’ll come back to that in a moment. For now, let’s examine life under a Corbyn Government.

To requote Rev Dr Peter Mullen at the top of this essay:

“It’s countdown to Corbyn. We shall not be kept waiting for long before we find ourselves living under the most extreme left wing government Britain has ever seen. There will be wholesale nationalisation, massive borrowing and spending, the abolition of all pay restraint and an expanded benefits system.”

I believe Dr Mullen is wrong. This is what many commentators say about Corbyn and John McDonnell etc. But this is overlooking the fact that Ministers run the Government, they don’t run the country. The country is run by Common Purpose. The Civil Service, Whitehall, the Institutions, are all infiltrated by Common Purpose. Read about Common Purpose here.

In the same way that the Conservative Party and Mrs May Government are marshalled and corralled by the Civil Service, so will a future Labour Government, especially a ‘hard-left’ Labour Government. Ah, I hear you say, but Blair got away with ‘politicising’ the Civil Service didn’t he? Well, yes, but they were ‘on the same side’ so to speak. ‘New Labour’ was not ‘hard-left’. The Civil Service doesn’t like ‘hard-left’ Government any more than a right wing or Conservative one. I don’t think a Corbyn Labour Government will be permitted to get away with ‘wholesale nationalisation’, ‘massive borrowing and spending’ and ‘abolition of pay restraint’. I think there will be higher wages for the low paid and a small increase in the benefits system. But the Civil Service, the Bank of England and the Common Purpose machine will keep a Corbyn Government in check. We will move to the left a bit, but then Cameron and May have already done that to the Conservative Party and the Government.

There will be quite a bit of bashing of ‘big business’, the 1% elite and tax avoiding multinationals but I think that will be no bad thing. Don’t get me wrong, I am no socialist, but if a Labour Government actually succeeds in narrowing the gap between the rich and poor, between the have and have-nots, then I think that will actually be good for the country.

In addition to this marshalling and corralling by Common Purpose, there is something else that we must bear in mind about a Corbyn Government and that is competency. As I have already said, Corbyn himself is untested and has never run anything, let alone a Government. Just take a look at Labour’s Front Bench. There is little experience and not much evidence of significant achievement in their track records. I think Corbyn will very quickly be exposed as a fraud and a stooge. His inexperience, his evasiveness, his thin-skinned personality and fragility under pressure will do for him. I think he will last no more than two years before he is knifed in the back by John McDonnell, Tom Watson or Keir Starmer. This will unsettle many Labour voters. But things will continue albeit still marshalled and corralled by the Civil Service.

I don’t think we have that much to fear from a Labour Government. It won’t be very ‘enjoyable’, it won’t be very efficient, it won’t be very radical, and it won’t be very pretty. But then we don’t have that now, do we?

However, I don’t think Labour will last more than a five year term. Why? Because this Labour Party, unlike New Labour are just not as organised and as ruthless and their incompetence and infighting will tire the electorate in the same way this Conservative government has put us to sleep.

Brexit

John Booth, Going Postal

This is where my crystal ball is a little misty. It’s not clear, I can’t be sure of what I see here. It looks like we are heading for a fudge, a so called ‘Soft Brexit’ where we stay aligned with the EU in some way, either by remaining in the Customs Union or a Customs Union. I’m pretty sure we will not remain in the Single Market. But then, I see the possibility that despite the spinelessness in the negotiations with the EU, despite the wishy washy pronouncements on our ‘objective’, we could actually, reject this and break the tie. I’m really not sure.

But it does look like that a ‘Transition Period’ or ‘Implementation Period’ of around two years will happen. This means we will remain tied to the EU until sometime in 2021. The timing is interesting because my crystal ball tells me that the Tories will lose the General Election of May 2022. So when we finally leave the EU completely in 2021 there will be around 12 months to the GE and all the signs, the commentators, the MSM and the polls will be predicting a Labour win. Labour want power. If May and her Government really do strive for a proper, complete and unambiguous Brexit, this will mean that Labour will have to honour it. Labour will have to promise to honour whatever agreement the Conservative Government strikes and if it is indeed a complete and absolute break from the EU, then Labour will accept it and not challenge it.

After Labour

Under the FPTP system we have a permanently maintained two party system which blocks third parties and minorities from ever achieving power. Because over recent years both Labour and Conservative Parties have ever converging policies and outlook, this FPTP system has achieved, in effect a One Party State.

During Labour’s term other things will be happening. The Conservative Party will probably split into two. The ‘left’ and ‘right’ wings will no longer tolerate being under the same roof. Very possibly the Labour Party could split into two as well for the same reasons. UKIP may achieve a rebirth under the leadership of Gerard Batten. The Democrats and Veterans Party may make a mark. For Britain is stuttering and slow to make an impact at the moment but it may also make a mark. The SNP will lose support but remain a pain the arse for Scotland and the UK, the DUP will continue to be dominant in NI and the LibDems, Greens and Plaid Cymru will continue to be irrelevant.

If this happens this will be a huge change, a watershed moment in British politics. What it will mean is that finally the two party system we have now will be swept away.

Probably Conservative

In 2027, nine years from now, some readers of this essay may be dead. Maybe me. Whatever. In this year there will probably be another General Election. I say ‘probably’ because possibly by then, the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 may have ben revoked. The odds are that by then we will have another GE and Labour will have been rumbled. But it wont be the usual two party choice. This may well be the first GE when three or four Parties may have a good chance of winning. I can imagine we may have New Labour, Old Labour, Liberal Conservatives, True Conservatives, Democrats, UKIP and a flurry of minor parties all contesting the Election.

Utopia.

The Crystal Ball – the short term future

John Booth, Going Postal

Ever since last June’s General Election and the Conservatives loss of their majority following the disastrous campaign by Mrs May I, like many people regarded May as a dead woman walking and she would be replaced quite soon. However, over the last few weeks and months whilst pondering writing this essay I have changed my mind. I now think that the mathematics actually protect her. As I wrote earlier, the Tories are petrified of causing a General Election because they are certain to lose. If there are several leadership candidates and they are prepared to fight it out in a short leadership campaign, then this will certainly bring down the Government.

There is only one possible way of replacing Mrs May that does not precipitate a GE and that is a bloodless coup, a ‘coronation’. There would be howls of protest from the BBC, Labour Party etc but the Tories could hold out and provided the DUP remained on board and supported the ‘coronation’ the Government may very well not fall after all. This one option would mean, by definition a new leader would have to be ‘chosen’ and be acceptable to the ‘men in suits’, the 1922 Committee and the Tory Party backers, ‘big business’.

Several leadership contenders are often mentioned: Boris Johnson, Amber Rudd, Jeremy Hunt and Jacob Rees-Mogg are mentioned most frequently. Rudd can be immediately discounted because she is ‘teacher’s pet’ and only in her job because of May. She won’t mount a challenge against her sponsor and in any case, she is just as useless as May. Jeremy Hunt is ambitious and has let it be known he wants the top job but it appears to me that he doesn’t have much support on the back benches. Boris Johnson must be the favourite, he is drooling for the job and is a ‘big hitter’. But he also a bit of a buffoon (of course, buffoonery hasn’t stopped others from being elected to high office) but he’s also a bit flaky and I wonder if he would have enough support to allow a ‘coronation’ without a leadership contest.

That leaves Jacob Rees-Mogg.

John Booth, Going Postal

He has said several times he is not a contender and doesn’t want the top job. However, his profile has been steadily rising recently and his pronouncements especially about the Brexit negotiations seem to me to be carefully staged. I think he does want to be PM but he is clever enough to know that an unwanted challenge resulting in a leadership challenge would bring down the Government, Corbyn would become Prime Minister and that would be the end of J R-M’s leadership chances for ever.

To me, all of this means that the only realistic prospect of replacing Mrs May and maintaining the Conservatives in power is if the Tory Party anoint J R-M in a ‘coronation’, with no other leadership candidates and do it sooner the better. If this happens, then we will have a good chance of getting a proper Brexit and probably a shorter ‘transition period’ or perhaps no transition at all.

If the Tories do not do this, then my crystal ball, although a bit cloudy on this issue, tells me that Brexit will be a fudge as I have already outlined above. If J R-M really believes in a proper, unambiguous Brexit and is prepared to put Country before Party, then he must organise the coup very soon.

John Booth, Going Postal

Jacob, your country needs you.
 

© John Booth 2018