We did not have to wait long to see the face of today’s Tory Party on view to anyone who was in Manchester at conference time, and when the viewing came, it was exactly what The Blue Team did not need outsiders to see: entitled, uncaring, dishonest, sneering, patronising, arrogant, Europhobic, intolerant, and safe in the belief that they could commit crimes and not have to account for their actions.
Councillor (for the time being) Sam Smith
Caught on video yesterday afternoon was a Young Rowan Atkinson lookalike later identified as Sam Smith, who was no relation to the well-known beer, but was a councillor representing Trent Valley ward for the Borough of Gedling, near Nottingham.
Smith and his accomplice Charlie Godwin, who is chair of Gedling’s young Conservatives, or whatever they call themselves nowadays, stole - yes, stole - two small EU flags from an anti-Brexit protester. They were pursued by the flags’ owner, and Steve Bray, the original and genuine Stop Brexit man, in the direction of Manchester Central and the Bridgewater Hall. They were caught. They then argued the toss about it.
Smith’s excuse for the theft was “We don’t want the EU”. They would be reported to the Police. “We’ll report you to the anti-democracy Police”, sneered Smith. “No-one in the UK wants the flag … we’re proving a point. These people do not respect democracy”. Godwin added “Democratically voted … by the British people”. What, someone voted to make theft not a criminal offence? And then Greater Manchester Police became involved.
They had been seen taking the flags. “Yes, yes, we did” confirmed Smith. What, asked a Police officer, had happened? “They were anti-democracy, and we took that away from them” replied Smith. Godwin claimed the flags did not have anyone’s name on them, at which point he was almost taken out by a passing Metrolink tram.
But after a discussion between the cops, and the protesters, Godwin handed over £20 and was almost apologetic. The impression was given that, had the Police not been there, Godwin and Smith would have expected to get away with it. Smith then lied to the press, claiming that the theft was merely “allegations”, and that there had been “a dispute”.
As Femi Oluwole put it, “It's that privileged sense of immunity from the law... You can see it in their face... They can admit to theft in front of police officers and know they'll never face any real consequences … Like Tory Leader, Like Tory Member I suppose”. Same with the lying, probably. Same with the real world out there.
James O’Brien mused “There were people like this at university. I didn’t know then & I don’t know now why they would want to be involved in politics”.
Meanwhile, the monitoring officer for Gedling Borough Council has confirmed that several complaints have been received pertaining to Cllr Smith’s behaviour. Perhaps the junior school where he is a governor, and Homeserve UK, where he apparently works, will also stop and think. Because until someone takes action, this behaviour will continue.
Breaking the law is just fine. Providing you’re in the same club as Bozo The Clown.
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