Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Boris Johnson and the collapse of British power

So Boris Johnson is the new foreign secretary.

Our relations with other countries are now in the hands of a man who, only a couple of weeks ago, destroyed his own chances of becoming the Conservatives' leader with one undiplomatic newspaper column.

And he has previous.

In 2004 Johnson was ordered by his leader Michael Howard to go to Liverpool and apologise to the people of the city after he marked the murder of Ken Bigley by running an article in the Spectator that said of them:
"They see themselves whenever possible as victims, and resent their victim status; yet at the same time they wallow in it."
In 2006 he had to apologise to the people of Papua New Guinea after likening to his colleagues in the Tory party:
"For 10 years we in the Tory Party have become used to Papua New Guinea-style orgies of cannibalism and chief-killing."
In 2007 he described Portsmouth as
"a place that is arguably too full of drugs, obesity, underachievement and Labour MPs."
And in 2008 he apologised for a column he had written in 2002 that referred to black people as "piccaninnies" and talked about their "watermelon smiles". During that same mayoral campaign he was also embarrassed by some of the racist columns by Taki that he had published in the Spectator.

The appointment of Boris Johnson is a confirmation that Britain is no longer a world power.

What international relations are left to us will be handled by David Davis, who is a grown up, as we attempt to withdraw from the European Union.

Johnson will merely go around the world exuding what he imagines to be upper-class charm. He will go down well with the sort of people who enjoy Richard Curtis films.

When the foreign secretary gig falls through - and I would not put money on its lasting too long - he will probably turn to playing the English butler in a situation comedy on American television.

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