Britain risks wallowing in mourning agree Boris Johnson and Alastair Campbell two of our most interesting political characters, from either side of the fence. The former PM spokesperson risks the scouse ire that almost got Boris sacked in his Observer op-ed. But Campbell gets clean away as Boris’ fans enter a period of mourning: he’s sacked over his handling of an affair.
Anyway. The reason Campbell gets away with it, despite being a fairly rough and ready sort himself, is that his is a think piece. Boris’ editorial was marked out by the brouhaha, twisted facts and exaggeration characteristic of British Conservatives in debate. Having lost their way ideologically, it seems they fall back on a common sense – ‘things wot Conservatives know’ – that is rarely supported by anything more than anecdote and amounts to little more than common prejudice. They seem reduced to a form of agitprop; agitational propaganda that’s supposed to wind everybody up, in the way Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11 makes US conservatives choke, while liberals cheer. But British Conservatives are an aged minority and their agitprop only serves to highlight how marginalised and out of touch they are.