Column: ‘Humbug’ should be etched on Boris Johnson’s political gravestone

Boris Johnson  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
Boris Johnson (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Boris Johnson tried to convince us that in his spare time he made London buses out of cardboard boxes, and painted little passengers on them.

This twee, suburban hobby was, presumably, meant to make him more human.

Picture the scene. Bojo comes home from a hard day insulting everyone and lowering standards in the House of Commons, dons his comfiest jumper – the one with patches on the elbows – and hums to himself as he paints while listening to The Archers. What complete and utter guff.

If Johnson is a nerdy model bus painter, I’m a shoe-in for Britain’s next entry into the Eurovision Song Contest.

The only bus he is familiar with is the one that had “£350m” emblazoned along its side.

His short spell as Prime Minister has been unedifying and depressing.

He’s a man of many words, we’re told, and yet he only seems to know four. Humbug and “get Brexit done.”

Over and over he says the same things, sticking as rigidly to the script as any bumbling oaf can.

Humbug ought to he etched on his political gravestone.

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A hideous response to a politician who called for calm as debate in the Commons sank to an all-time low.

And when the memory of murdered MP Jo Cox was raised, he thought it appropiate to honour her by “getting Brexit done.”

Horrifying stuff, but Johnson isn’t as dumb as he acts. He knows words matter, and every single phrase, every adjective was weighed carefully. He’s playing a dangerous game setting people against the parliament – and parliament against itself.

Like Trump, whose book of tricks he has clearly studied very closely, he shows no sign of empathy, opting instead for either full blown bluster, or offensive language.

Compare his Jo Cox response to that of Gordon Brown paying a very personal, emotional tribute to David Cameron on the death of his political opponent’s six-year old son. World’s apart.

Digging deep into his Dumb Book of Military Jibes, Johnson talks of a Surrender Act, and compares opponents to traitors.

And when there are calls for restraint, he fully agrees, while absolving himself for all responsibility. It’d be funny if we weren’t playing for such high stakes.

And, in that moment, Johnson demonstrates he has no idea what leadership actually means.

He could easily have led by example and everything would have simmered down. He chooses not to. It doesn’t fit his narrative, or his goal.

Johnson is playing his Trump card with just as little grace, tact or diplomacy as the buffoon currently facing impeachment charges in Washington. The only hope is both of them are felled before they inflict real damage.

How on earth Tory Party members thought Johnson was the man to unite the country and “get Brexit done” – as if it was a tick box that will just take a few minuites – is something political scholars will be discussing for decades to come.

Prime Ministers are there to speak for the nation. He isn’t fit to deliver a pizza to Downing Street let alone live in Number 10.