I agree with Douglas Murray: in twenty years’ time we’re going to look back on this era as an age of insanity and wonder how it was that so many people could possibly have been so stupid. Our political class especially.
Can there ever have been a period in history — even in the turmoil of the years leading up to the Civil War — when Parliament lost the plot quite so spectacularly? When the people supposedly serving us as our elected representatives proved themselves so disgracefully low-rent, so manifestly thick, so embarrassingly unfit for purpose?
I’m thinking, particularly, of the debate last week — or rather the excuse for a pretence of a mockery of a debate — when the leftist loons on the Opposition benches decided to take tactical offence at the Prime Minister’s use of a series of harmless words: “humbug”, “surrender”, “capitulation”.
Humbug is an old fashioned word — most famously used by Scrooge in A Christmas Carol — for dishonest or deceptive speech.
And humbug was, of course, exactly what previously unknown Labour MP Paula Sherriff was guilty of when she decided that the best way to humiliate Prime Minister Boris Johnson and grab herself a few minutes of limelight was metaphorically to disinter the corpse of murdered MP Jo Cox.
Labour's Paula Sherriff raised the murder of MP Jo Cox in the House of Commons, asking Boris Johnson to stop using "dangerous" language like "Surrender Act"
The PM replied: "I have never heard such humbug in all my life"
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) September 25, 2019
“I genuinely do not seek to stifle robust debate”, she began — her nose visibly lengthening.
Paula ‘Pinocchio’ Sherriff then went on to lambast the Prime Minister for his use of “offensive, dangerous or inflammatory language for legislation that we do not like.”
So far so predictably dishonest and canting. Let’s remind ourselves that the “offensive” and “dangerous” and “inflammatory” language in question was Boris’s use of the phrase “Surrender Act” to describe the Act — introduced by Remainer Labour MP Hilary Benn and fast-tracked with the connivance of the Remainer Speaker John Bercow — which made it illegal for Boris to negotiate a No Deal Brexit. In other words, it very much was an act of surrender: to the European Union’s hostile negotiators.
But then Sheriff decided to up the rhetorical ante by going full Jo Cox. Jo Cox was, of course, the Labour MP tragically murdered in the streets by a mentally ill man with far-right sympathies during the Brexit referendum campaign. Labour has been attempting to pin the blame for this on Brexit and Brexiteers ever since — though rarely with such clodhopping, tubthumping unsubtlety as Sheriff.
One second she was talking about “inflammatory” language, the next she was dousing the floor of the Commons with petrol — metaphorically, though I doubt that’s a word in her limited vocabulary — getting out her Zippo, and torching the Palace of Westminster.
“We stand here Mr Speaker under the shield of our departed friend with many of us in this place subject to death threats and abuse every single day. Let me tell the prime minister that they often quote his words, surrender act, betrayal, traitor and I for one am sick of it.”
The Prime Minister was understandably taken aback at this entirely gratuitous and — yes — inflammatory reference to an MP whose murder had nothing whatsoever to do with the debate in hand. His answer sought to introduce a sense of proportion, nay, reality to this display of thoroughly manufactured hysteria.
“I have to say Mr Speaker I have never heard such humbug in all my life.”
Nor have I.
Nor, I doubt, has anyone with an ounce of common sense.
Only Remoaners are so completely unhinged that they can find anything untoward about the metaphorical use of the word “surrender” — in Parliament or anywhere else.
— Bob Moran (@bobscartoons) September 27, 2019
Quite simply — see also Donald Trump — Brexit has so deranged a segment of our population so completely that they have quite literally lost the ability to think rationally or behave decently and fairly.
I noticed this when I tried explaining the logic to a friend who voted Remain.
I said: “Imagine if I went back in time and told you that, say, ten years in the future the policing of our speech would have reached such a strange pass that even the word “surrender” would be considered dangerous and controversial in Parliament. Do you not think that your ten-years-ago self might find that a bit weird?”
My friend could not see it at all. “It’s not just that word ‘surrender’. It’s the general tone of the debate. And all the other words they’ve used in Parliament like ‘traitor’ and ‘betrayal’…”
“I’m going to stop you there because we’re talking here about the specific word ‘surrender’, which is what all the fuss is about,” I said.
Also, I’m pretty sure that “traitor” has been dishonestly introduced into the debate by Remoaner propagandists such as ex-prime minister John Major and, see above, by Paula Sherriff.
This is fake news. Pure and simple.
No government official or indeed parliamentarian have used the words saboteur, traitor, or enemy.
The parliamentarians using the language of betrayal and nazis is almost exclusively coming from the opposition. https://t.co/ECBqNgf36E
— Tom Harwood (@tomhfh) September 27, 2019
That said, even if stronger terms like “betrayal” and “traitor” had been used by Brexiteers in Parliament, I’m not sure that they would have been illegitimate or even inflammatory — just a plain statement of the truth.
From today’s Mail on Sunday, we learn that Downing Street has launched a “major investigation” after officials received intelligence that MPs, including former Cabinet Minister Oliver Letwin, had received help drafting the bill later to become the Surrender Act from members of the French Government and the European Union.
All MPs swear an oath to "be faithful and bear true allegiance" to the Queen. If any of these Remainers are found to have colluded with a foreign power to undermine the policy of Her Majesty's Government, they should be booted out of office immediately!https://t.co/ntwXbJeHQw
— Leave.EU (@LeaveEUOfficial) September 29, 2019
If treating with a foreign power in order to undermine your country’s national interest isn’t treachery, an act of betrayal and the work of traitors, then I don’t know what is.
Boris Johnson, to his great credit, has refused to back down over this free speech issue.
Today, the leftist TV presenter Andrew Marr tried to bully him into an apology. Boris wasn’t having it.
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) September 29, 2019
Really, though, why on earth are we having to applaud the Prime Minister for his courage and high moral principle in defending his use of the word “surrender” in Parliament?
Surely the real issue here is the utter absurdity of his being put in this position in the first place.
How can it be right that Parliament is currently chock-full of vexatious, gobby, thick-as-pigshit no talents so tricksy and dishonest and unprincipled that they feel able to take the Prime Minister to task for using a harmless word? And how can it be right that they do not get disciplined for their time-wasting by the Speaker?
How can it be right that we have a mainstream media so grotesquely biased that rather than point out the absurdity of this behaviour it instead endorses it and makes it the main topic of discussion for three days running?
Britain’s Parliament used to be a shining example — the envy of the civilised world. Now it is an embarrassment and a joke. And the fault for this lies entirely with the Remainer liberal elite who have hijacked Britain’s constitution and subverted it to their own anti-democratic interests. There are many words to describe what they have done to our country and what kind of people they are — “traitors” barely scratches the surface.
But the important thing is that all of us with eyes to see and ears to hear know exactly what’s going on and will be merciless in destroying those responsible. Metaphorically speaking, of course.
WATCH | So much for a "kinder politics" Jezza! Labour MPs routinely use the most foul, violent, and extreme language and then lecture our Prime Minister for accurately describing their shameless behaviour. It's time for an election so we can vote these hypocritical saboteurs out! pic.twitter.com/7oPEpCSKZ0
— Leave.EU (@LeaveEUOfficial) September 26, 2019