Thursday 20 July 2023

The Grant Shapps Crap Attack

Political attacks come in all kinds of guises. We're most habituated to the scurrilous ones, but occasionally one comes along that is completely inept and you're left scratching your head. Our old chum Grant Shapps supplied us one of these today with an open letter to Keir Starmer. In it, Shapps requests that the Labour Party shell out for "damage" done by Just Stop Oil activists to the Department of Energy. Making leaps of logic only a Tory minister overdosing on the desperate pills could make, Shapps says Labour are responsible because it's the "political wing of Just Stop Oil".

I've read Shapps's argument so you don't have to, and it basically amounts to Labour abstaining on the long-mooted crackdown on protest shows the party's in bed with Just Stop Oil. It accepts money from Dale Vince, who has also financially supported them. Are (apparently) adopting the protest group's policies, and there is a suggestion of secret phone calls. As if Morgan McSweeney is issuing orders and telling activists where to target on Starmer's behalf. Pathetic stuff even by Tory standards, and one that leaves them open to all kinds of ripostes. Does Shapps really want to go down the road of being called out over Russian money ending up in Tory coffers? Or wanting his wretched party to be seen as being on the hook for all the damage the fossil fuels industry has done (which, more than any other party, they are responsible for).

And who was this supposed to land with? What kind of punter is going to be flicking through Shapps's Twitter feed and finding his drivel convincing? Even the idiots who regurgitate Tory tat in the Daily Express might have their credulity stretched. If Shapps is thinking himself clever, it might pass itself off as an attention seeking exercise. Except he's too small beer these days to command much notice even among the right wing press. Though that is not obvious to the Shapps ego apparatus. Even so, this does make some sort of sense in the context of a strategy he appears to be taking a lead on. With Labour's loss of a council by-election last week over the expansion of London's Ultra Low Emission Zone, the Tories are hoping to hang on to Uxbridge on the strength of anti-ULEZ feeling. Add together the two kinds of posturing, the Tories are groping toward a pro-motorist position, which they hope they can exploit to save some suburban seats. Though if they hope to make some inroads, they're going to have to be savvier than Shapps's unadulterated crap attack.

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Zoltan Jorovic said...

It seems a desperate ploy. Surely the people most likely to be swayed by a pro-motorist, screw-the-planet message, are going to vote Tory anyway - unless someone like Reform or Reclaim (or is it Rectum?) stand. Why are both Labour and Cons going for the same narrow band of the electorate? Do they think that these are the key voters in all marginals? If everybody keeps shifting right, doesn't that start to leave a gaping void where the majority of voters actually are? Is this the final flourish of FPTP, bringing us to a dystopian eco-disaster societal collapse as roaming bands wrapped in the union jack swig homebrewed lager in the drought stricken ruins as the houses of parliament burn in a thick haze of acrid, toxic smoke? A ragged figure staggers over the rubble strewn square croaking "it was the people's will..." as he falls into the fetid sewer that once was the Thames.

JN said...

Zoltan Jorovic:

Both the Tories and the Labour-right (Blairites, Starmerites, whatever...) have been pretty clear that they don't give a fuck about anything beyond their own personal and very short-term interests. Don't overthink it: Sunak is a fuckwit, Starmer is a fuckwit, and they just don't care. We are ruled by idiots (just like the catastrophe of WW1 was caused by idiots).

Anonymous said...

Zoltan Jorovic

Its mostly about our dreadful media (surely amongst the very worst in any non-totalitarian country) and getting *their* approval.

Labour getting smashed in 2019 after almost unprecedented - and totally united - levels of hostility from them, convinced the current Labour leadership that it needed, if not their fervent approval, then an end to that relentless unanimous enmity, at almost any cost.

There is very little currently happening not explainable by this.