I have noticed a regrettable trend in ousting British Prime Ministers. Tony Blair (Labour, in power from 1997 to 26 June 2007), said that if someone did not kick him, verbally, during any day, it was rare.
William Hague (Conservative Leader, elected Leader of the Conservative Party at 36, in 1997), was hounded by the media and resigned in 2001 after a second Election, which resulted in the net Conservative gain of one seat. Hey, that sounds familiar.
John Major (Prime Minster 1990-1997) was called a ‘grey man’, although he extricated us from the Exchange Rate Mechanism in 1992. He did not agree with it personally, but had a mandate from the British people. He also presided over the Maastricht Treaty (on European Union), but Conservative MP’s rebelled by twenty-two, when the then majority in the Commons was eighteen.
Mr David Cameron fell on his sword when the country mainly voted to leave the EU. Now we have Mrs May, hounded by her Conservative minsters. I think Amber Rudd’s face was anguished rather than stony at last week’s Conservative Conference. Mrs May has been too proud to accept help on public speaking and from the SAS, on ways to be resilient. Please persuade her to take offers of help, for her own sake.
Mrs May has delegated, which means she is a strong leader. She lets Cabinet Ministers research their own briefs, but the Brexit talks are more difficult than the people ever dreamed. It seems that every decision has ramifications and a corresponding UK law needs to be re-examined.
Let’s touch on the Customs Union. France blocked us in 1985 when they refused to import our beef and we retaliated by refusing to import their lamb. It was the midst of the UK beef crisis, but the French acted immediately in their national interest. That has been the same ever since, irrelevant of the EU. How difficult is trade going to be if we have no laws and curbs to help our own export industries? How does it affect agriculture?
I wonder whether the Prime Ministers now consults UK trade bodies, or relies on Civil Servants? John Major overruled them in private and in public, when he initiated a key mechanism to stop BSE (Bovine spongiform encephalopathy). He prohibited the giving of cattle’s brains and spinal cords to healthy cows and sheep, which was later deemed to have succeeded in halting its progress. A friend of mine’s husband worked at a secret government facility and she was offered an instant abortion if some of the virus escaped. It was irrelevant to her at the time, but showed how worried the government was about its human variant CJD.
It seems so much less important, but I wonder if Civil Servants have been overruled in the wake of the UK cars’ trade body being wrongfooted when the government announced electric cars only from 2040, I wonder what help the government is getting.
As of today, Theresa May is being asked about secret talks she had earlier about the legal potential of changing our minds over Brexit. Thank goodness someone is being sensible. The public’s overriding concern was always being overrun by incomers. Failing information to the contrary and a distinct lack of action on it, I think they are still concerned. I cannot see how the vote would change on Brexit, as a result of this, but then you cannot have another referendum just because you do not like the results of the first one. In my view, better concentrate on that first and then look at smoothing our exit from the EU.
Whoever knew that being a Prime Minister was such an exacting role?
Have an interesting week