It was said of John Reith, first Director General of the BBC, that he despised politics of both the left and right because he wanted the whole world to be run by the Corporation - in other words, Himself. That thought comes to mind when considering the political journey undertaken by former Labour and Respect Party MP George Galloway, another Scot whose political loyalty is, ultimately, mainly to Himself Personally Now.
I inadvertently backed WHO?
Galloway, who once saluted Saddam Hussein’s “indefatigability”, was a long-serving Labour MP - he first entered Parliament after defeating Roy Jenkins in 1987 - until he was summarily expelled from the party in 2003. After denouncing the “politically motivated Kangaroo court” that had expelled him, he declared “It is clear now that Mr Blair intends to go after Glenda Jackson and Bob Marshall-Andrews QC”. Mr Blair did no such thing.
Squeaky wrong party finger up the bum time
But he did let the world know, while making occasional electoral history, as when he won the Bradford West by-election in 2012 for the Respect Party, where he stood on the question of Britain’s membership of the EU. “I’ll be campaigning to remain in the EU as anyone with any brain cells will be doing” he told in 2014.
It's the way he tells those U-Turns
However, and here we encounter a significantly sized however, Galloway is nothing if not perfidious, and so it came to pass that the 2016 referendum campaign saw him attending a Grassroots Out gathering and telling those present “Nigel [Farage] and I agree on hardly anything at all. But we do agree, at least, on one thing”. And what was that?
“And it happens to be the most important thing, not only now, but in the lifetime of everyone in this hall, and everyone in this country. It is the demand that Britain should be an independent, sovereign and democratic country and that means leaving the European Union”. So those times he was returned to Westminster were undemocratic. Who knew?
And given his ability to swivel 180 degrees with such regularity, it should have surprised no-one when this champion of the working class declared yesterday “Given the nature of Labour’s Euro-fanatic candidates list and the crucial juncture we have reached in the fight for the full implementation of the #Brexit referendum result and for one-time only I will be supporting @Nigel_Farage in next months elections”.
Those who had previously though better of Galloway were not happy, with Loz Argyle’s response typical. “George Galloway was a politician i admired, he has now pledged his support for the fascism/racism that Nigel Farage represents in the Euro Elections, I'm shocked, Farage has whipped up hatred against migrants with his pal Arron Banks, ffs George, have you not seen #c4news?” Not sure that bothers him.
Sue Marsh added “He does this. Always. I was sad for lefties thinking his eloquence was in any way more than on loan to them. Lives to shock”. Quite. But one part of Galloway’s Farage flounce had been overlooked. He had endorsed @TheBrexitPartly.
This is who Galloway has endorsed
This Twitter account describes itself thus: “Fighting for democracy. Champion of the working people. Campaigning against the elite. Enemy of lying politicians. A parody of a stupid racist parody”. George Galloway can’t even flounce without fouling it up.
And he never did get readmitted to the Labour Party. I’ll just leave that one there.
Enjoy your visit to Zelo Street? You can help this truly independent blog carry on talking truth to power, while retaining its sense of humour, by adding to its Just Giving page at