In one full strength column, Heath demonstrates his detachment from the real world, together with full-on but unintentional hilarity and a need to perhaps consider a long lie down in a suitably darkened room. “The Conservatives face 1997-style annihilation if they don’t stop this drift” is the headline, which is interesting as the Tories weren’t annihilated.
But that is merely a mild hors d’oeuvres. Heath swiftly moves on to the more pungent entrée: “Without drastic, urgent action, the party will be sucked into the kind of death spiral that sunk John Major’s government in the mid 1990s, and a Left-wing coalition led by Sir Keir Starmer and supported by the SNP, Welsh nationalists, Greens and other rabble-rousers may seize power in 2023 or 2024. Such an outcome would be calamitous, and result in a vicious class and cultural war from which the country would never recover”.
Aaaarrghh! Jibber!! JIBBER!!! Detachment from reality duly proven, and it gets worse. “There are now just two viable options if the party is to bounce back. The first is for Boris Johnson to remain in office, attempt to fix the immediate damage caused by Partygate, and then recant his worst policies and delegate huge amounts of power to a David Frost-like CEO in No 10”. Frost? FROST?!? The one who negotiated the dud Brexit deal?
That this is sheer fantasy is duly confirmed by Heath’s next utterance: “We would need the old Boris back: he would have to ditch the National Insurance increase, embrace a freeze on public spending and accept major shifts to his green agenda”. That would be “The old Boris” onto whom Heath and his fellow economic flat earthers can project their worldview.
And it’s a rum worldview: “There would need to be a clear-out of the Cabinet as well as advisers, with all the neo-socialists, green fanatics and pro-woke crowd exiting immediately”. Bonus points for not knowing what Woke means, and using the word as a dog-whistle pejorative. More bonus points for believing that the Tories house “neo-socialists” and “green fanatics”. So what would Sir prescribe for his brave new world?
“Every policy would need to be judged on whether it makes Brexit Britain more competitive, and/or by how it improves the lives, and addresses the fears, of culturally conservative and aspirational Britain”. But Brexit Britain isn’t going to be more competitive any time soon. And what about those who aren’t part of his target audience?
“The aim would be to ruthlessly target the 43.6 per cent of the electorate who voted Tory in 2019”. And stuff the other 56.4%, eh? Do go on. “But by following the broadly conservative approach these voters expected, rather than the weird blend of reheated neo-Brownite social democracy and green paternalism that was unleashed upon them instead”.
Heath has no idea what that 43.6% expected. And the implicit attack on “democracy” should concern those outside the media bubble. But good of him to let us know he needs to get out more. That is, after he’s had another of those long lie downs.
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