The last days of Boris Johnson and what comes after?
The last days of Boris Johnson and what comes after? Gerry Hassan Scottish Review, 8 June 2022 Tory leadership votes of no confidence come around much more frequently nowadays. This is not a misperception, but rooted in the decline in the authority and quality of Tory leaders, the nature of the Tory tribe and the failures of Toryism to address the UK’s underlying issues. The current debacle and decline of is directly connected to the lack of any redeeming moral and positive qualities in him as a public figure. But this is about much more than ‘Partygate’, the lies he
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How do we put government and leadership back in Scotland and the UK?
How do we put government and leadership back in Scotland and the UK? Gerry Hassan Scottish Review, 25 May 2022 UK government and politics are not in a good place. They have been traduced and trashed in ways once unimaginable. Boris Johnson has presided over an administration from top to bottom of unbelievable incompetence, serial lying and disdain for the law and due process, vandalising government, civil service and public standards. At the same time in Scotland fifteen years of SNP rule do not find things here in a good place. All across society and public life there are questions
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Boris Johnson’s survival is a headache for Douglas Ross and the Scottish Tories
Boris Johnson’s survival is a headache for Douglas Ross and the Scottish Tories Gerry Hassan The National, 15 February 2022 Boris Johnson’s continued clinging on as Prime Minister and leader of the Tory Party is an undignified mess, a new ethical low for the Tories and moral stain on the reputation of Britain. Tory politicians across the UK now have to publicly pretend that they live in an Alice in Wonderland world where upside down is the right way up, and Johnson’s never-ending speel of lies is not called out but presented as fair, accurate comment. Thus Tory politicians cannot
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In the age of rebellion we can do better than Boris Johnson and Toryism
In the age of rebellion we can do better than Boris Johnson and Toryism Gerry Hassan Scottish Review, 2 February 2022 2022 is the centenary of a year of rebellion. The Irish Free State was born in 1992, the ‘Red Clydesiders’ went to Westminster; and the year gave its name to the 1922 Committee of Tory backbenchers after they overthrew a sitting Prime Minister – David Lloyd George – then heading up a Tory-Liberal coalition government. Boris Johnson and this Tory Government should know that today we live in even more an age of rage and rebellion – being the
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We need to address accountability in public life in the UK and Scotland
We need to address accountability in public life in the UK and Scotland Gerry Hassan The National, 1 February 2022 The UK is a country lacking accountability in public life. Increasingly, those in senior positions of authority in government, civil service or public bodies resign or take responsibility for anything they have done. There never used to be such an indefensible state of affairs. Previously government ministers used to resign for policy failures, shortcomings of their departments, and for breaking constitutional convention of ministers. Lord Carrington, Thatcher’s first Foreign Secretary, resigned as a result of the Argentinian invasion of the
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It is not just Boris Johnson that is the problem but Toryism and the British State
It is not just Boris Johnson that is the problem but Toryism and the British State Gerry Hassan The National, 25 January 2022 Boris Johnson’s Premiership is in tatters, he is discredited as a person and politician, and his tenure is coming to a predictable, messy end. The only question is timing. Already lots of once true believers in Johnson are trying out unconvincing lines like “let’s look at the big picture, and all the right calls the Prime Minister has made” which is delusional and an insult to voters. Others try to be subtler, distancing themselves from the PM,
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Time for a Genuine Tartan Tory Party!
Time for a Genuine Tartan Tory Party! Gerry Hassan Scottish Review, 19 January 2022 The Scottish Tories have had a shoogly past week. Douglas Ross, Scottish Tory leader, dared to put his head above the parapet and say the unthinkable - that Boris Johnson was long past his sell-by-date and should for once do the decent thing and resign. He was subsequently followed by the entire group of Tory MSPs at Holyrood; while former Scots Tory leader Ruth Davidson was even more indignant and incandescent with fury. This was met by Jacob Rees-Mogg calling Douglas Ross ‘a lightweight’ and even
“Scotland deserves better than this”: the broken UK constitution
“Scotland deserves better than this": the broken UK constitution Gerry Hassan The National, 18 January 2022 The reputation of the UK PM is in tatters; UK Government is in chaos, denial and vengeful; Toryism has become toxic again and the stories of Boris Johnson’s misdeeds and blatant lies have become the object of anger, indignation and satire. A backdrop to all this is that what passes for the British constitution is literally falling apart – buckling under the pressure of a government and individuals who don’t accept the rules and think they can gather unchecked power to themselves. There are
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Is this an elegy for the end of Britain?
Is this an elegy for the end of Britain? Gerry Hassan The National, 11 January 2022 The UK is in serious crisis – a malaise that affects its politics, political elite, system, and the ethos and practices by which they govern, act and think. That much is obvious to anyone studying the descent of Britain. But what is rare is for this to be spoken about openly and candidly, clearly directed at those who have produced this sorry mess. Tom McTague’s essay in The Atlantic magazine, “How Britain Falls Apart?” last week showed insight and honesty along with a
Scotland needs to learn the lessons of how we defeated Margaret Thatcher
Scotland needs to learn the lessons of how we defeated Margaret Thatcher Gerry Hassan The National, 28 December 2021 Margaret Thatcher looms large in the history of modern Scotland. Her minority rule of Scotland, her dogma and indifference to hardship and suffering, her English nationalism wrapped in the flag of the Union Jack: all this and more irritated an overwhelming majority of Scots. She did change history here, although not in ways she intended. She underlined that the old union of compromise was broken; she weakened the strength of the unionist case; and she was a handmaiden in creating the
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