Sadly for all those who wanted this morning’s headlines to be dominated by terrorism, even the fifth attack in London this year could not stop the veritable tsunami of coverage for the undeserving, but still newsworthy, figure of London’s formerly very occasional Mayor Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson. And most have missed the point.
A complete Muppet. And Elmo from Sesame Street
While it’s true that the Tory civil war, for so long, like most of the iceberg, mostly concealed below the surface, has well and truly erupted into open view, what the press is so far not homing in on is who has their hand up Bozza’s back. Because, as ever, it is never about high principles with Johnson, but following the money.
So while Simon Walters at the Mail on Sunday generates the shock horror headline “TORIES AT WAR OVER BORIS’S MOVE ‘TO OUST PM’ … Johnson in open revolt over soft Brexit as he ‘lobs hand grenade into No10’”, he’s right that, despite polite support from the likes of Damian Green, wheeled out for Sky News, and Amber Rudd, appearing on The Andy Marr Show (tm), Bozza is not flavour of the month in the party right now - but what he does not tell us is Why He Done It When He Did.
Nor does the increasingly downmarket and desperate Telegraph, although its headline, “Gove and Patel back Boris vision for Brexit … Cabinet ministers support calls for bolder approach, but May allies react with fury”, gives us a clue (as well as the ridiculous idea that the UK approach to Brexit can be bolder than something yet to be defined).
Priti Patel is one of Bozza’s cheerleaders, as well as being utterly vacant when it comes to enunciating an original thought - big deal. The Tel’s clue is when it pitches the name of Michael “Oiky” Gove, whose loyalties are first and foremost to Rupert Murdoch.
You think this is not significant? Stay with me here. While the Observer reflects the view that Bozza should, for once, keep to the occasional “yikes” and “crikey readers”, by telling “Boris Johnson ought to be fired, angry Tories tell May”, the Murdoch Sunday Times relegates The Blond to a more minor from page role, while giving readers the approving headline “Boris revives Brexit ‘dream team’”. And Tim Shipman, obediently, has more.
“Boris Johnson and Michael Gove have rekindled their Brexit partnership in a high stakes attempt to force Theresa May’s hand on European Union talks as a new civil war erupted in the Conservative Party last night … The Brexit heavyweights have told the Prime Minister to boost NHS spending by £30bn a year when Britain leaves the EU”.
Oh look, guess who's here?
Yeah, right. And where’s she going to find that? On the side of a bus? Ah yes, you see how it’s all coming together now. Shipman is taking dictation: there is no credible way that Gove and Bozza can be described as “heavyweight” anything. This is a little creative disruption by the Murdoch mafiosi, one of many such exercises that will be undertaken unless, and until, the Government does as the Murdochs want, and waves through the Sky bid.
Bozza isn’t going to be PM. And nor is Gove. But they are useful idiots in helping an unelected foreigner to make mischief. I said yesterday that Bozza was being leant on. Now you can see who is doing the leaning. In the fullness of time you will find out more.