Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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Shake the money tree – Sunak’s answer to everything


EVERY day it seems that Great Britain sinks deeper into a quicksand of imbecility, ignorance and fantasy, largely of its own making. Mere denizens of this benighted land can only watch in silent horror, spectators to a slow-motion train crash, the ending of which we can envisage with blinding clarity.

Hearing the increasingly ludicrous pronouncements of MPs, like many others I ponder a simple question: ‘Do they live on the same planet as me?’

Last week we were treated to a bumper crop of absurdity, no more so than our own Prime Minister passing comment on the alleged Chinese spying at Westminster. Addressing the media throng, Mr Sunak put on his most serious face and accompanying pious voice, declaiming the ‘sanctity’of Parliament. Millions watching must have bellowed ‘Pull the other one’, or perhaps something more excoriating.The Prime Minister has remained strangely mute on the list of establishment panjandrums on the CCP-run Huawei’s payroll. No pertinent views expressed on the sanctity of these former senior civil servants and quango bosses, and therefore of Whitehall and Government? 

To talk of Parliament in such portentous terms is risible. Putting aside the financial and sexual misdemeanours that have entertained the put-upon taxpayers for many years, it is Sunak’s belief that MPs are carrying out something akin to God’s work that really sticks in the craw.

MPs, with a handful of exceptions, have shown themselves to be a largely lacklustre group of individuals, incapable of independent thought and analysis, who have routinely voted through reams of misguided legislation. Perhaps most crippling was the 2008 Climate Change Act, piloted though Parliament by pantomime villain Ed Miliband. This outrageous Act will have catastrophic consequences for every single person in the UK. Currently we are merely suffering the tip of (a no doubt melting) iceberg.

While Net Zero mania is promulgated via every medium, academically qualified dissenting voices are excluded, their views pigeonholed with flat earthers. It is a grotesque carnival of ill-informed and often wealthy hand-wringers.

At the end of March 2023, UK general government gross debt was the mind-boggling sum of £2,537billion, or to put it another way 100.5 per cent of GDP. It doesn’t require you to be an economist to realise these sums are totally unsustainable and that something will have to give. Yet only last week Rishi Sunak shook the money tree one more time for a crop of £1.6billion to the Green Climate Fund. This is on top of a dizzying cascade of cash to a host of other causes – NHS, schools, defence etc etc.

Wouldn’t it be gratifying, just for once, to hear someone say: ‘Look, we think it would be better if we save some money’? That scenario will never occur as any such utterance would be drowned out by the deafening cries of vested interest groups bleating about the unfairness and callousness of the government.

No doubt HS2 will deliver in spades, arrive on schedule and on budget.

Take Theresa May, (yes please, take her, as Max Miller might have said). In a hotly contested field of woeful, uninspiring, and empty-headed politicians, last week she was able to show the Peter Principle made flesh. Asked about the pervasive and poisonous ideology that is fracturing society, instead of standing up for those de-platformed or harmed, she smiled coquettishly and declared ‘I am woke.’ Bravo! The voters of Maidenhead must be delighted.

May is of course just one in a very long line of talentless people flushed with their own self-importance who are happy to ignore the wishes of their constituents. Unanswered mails, cut-and-paste letters to truculent voters and above all a towering condescension that they, the MPs, know what’s best.

When you hear Sir Keir Starmer pontificate on democracy and the mortal threat that it is under, one should be counting the spoons. His thinly veiled cosying up to the EU should set alarm bells ringing across the land. Labour’s absurd talk of sorting out the ‘small boats’ and ending the asylum backlog was only missing finding a cure for cancer to garnish this dish of dishonesty.

If Sir Keir is the next occupier of Number Ten Downing Street, I can confidently predict we will soon be again in the EU’s warm embrace. A spurned lover, forgiven and welcomed back, or should that be a beaten spouse unable to escape an abusive partner? Whatever, the very fact that the great repeal of EU legislation that we were promised was rowed back on speaks volumes.

More and more people, though, are questioning why their elected representatives are concentrating more on imposing financially harmful regulations than taking seriously genuine concerns about security, money, immigration, schools and the NHS.

As it was announced last week that the NHS has a waiting list approaching 8million, was it appropriate to embark on a costly TV advertising campaign suggesting people go to their GP if they have any worries? Have those responsible ever tried to call their GP in the 8am scramble?

Quite how bad it must get before someone does something seems impossible to predict. The population seem relatively content to suffer all manner of privations at the hands of those whose salaries they ultimately pay.  It could be that we have passed the point of no return and we are simply beyond help.

In J Lee Thompson’s 1958 classic film Ice Cold in Alex, Anthony Quayle’s character is rescued from the quicksand by John Mills, Sylvia Syms and Harry Andrews. Where is today’s John Mills to rescue the UK before it disappears without trace?

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Alexander McKibbin
Alexander McKibbin
Alexander McKibbin is a retired media executive who worked across domestic and international media.

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