So far, the Conservative Party Conference has been a wonderful time for joy-seekers – a nonchalant, soothing, friendly amble through the world of politics. It’s full of messages of hope, and prosperity, and bright futures for everyone who is rich and Tory. Oh, wait, what I actually mean is that the whole country is ballsed.
For instance, Theresa May has come out swinging and stated that she will be activating Article 50 (the Joy Button) by April 2017, ejecting us from the dreary old world of guaranteed trade and mutual co-operation and into the wonderland that is sovereignty, separation and isolation. She’s also promised that controlling our borders and removing EU jurisdiction would be her ‘priorities’, AND promised that she would be fighting for British companies’ “maximum freedom to trade and operate in the single market”.
This is impressive stuff from Prime Minister May – even more impressive when you note that almost every EU country that has been asked has stated categorically that they will not allow us to maintain membership of the single market if we impose our own immigration laws. Imagine having Theresa’s confidence – the confidence to aim for something that is categorically impossible. It must be liberating.
She also, again, spoke about the country’s ‘emphatic clarity’ in voting to Leave – because apparently 52 to 48 is ‘emphatic’ now. What would be nice would be if she could explain with the same emphatic clarity exactly what the government is planning to do during negotiations but apparently she doesn’t feel that it’s appropriate to talk about it. Sort of like when Sharon from the office is given the job of organising the staff party and ‘wants everything to be a surprise’ and is then spotted in Tesco the night before with a trolley full of fondant fancies and a family pack of Irn Bru.
Theresa’s also very proud of something called the ‘Great Repeal Bill’ which will essentially make all EU law British law so that we can then get rid of it whenever we fancy, which sort of sounds good until you release that that includes the Human Rights Act and employment laws, and this government have already said they’d like to get rid of the former and hinted at the later – so bear with me whilst I emigrate to Canada.
It’s not all Theresa taking up all the space though, there’s other awful people making horrific announcements about the future of the country as well. Jeremy Hunt, for example, the most popular Health Secretary in a poll of Jeremy Hunt, announced that the NHS would be ‘self-sufficient’ and finding very nice ways of saying how great it would be if all the foreign doctors would just piss off back home and let hard-working British people do the same job Britishly. Assuming of course there is an NHS left for them to do the job with after Hunt has finished sledgehammering his way through everything he can get his hands on.
Not to be outdone, Liam Fox made his bid for awful, villainous glory by LITERALLY HOLDING TWO MILLION HUMANS TO RANSOM so if this was a James Bond film he’d be the one swivelling round in his chair, probably stroking a fox. He’s not guaranteeing anyone’s right to remain in the UK until their country ‘reciprocates’ – because in 2016, guaranteeing that a human being can remain in their home is apparently no longer a nice thing to do, but is in fact a political negotiation. Because our country is run by the actual most awful people.
Having watched all of this, Amber Rudd (the Home Secretary, a woman who once described the people of her constituency as ‘people on benefits who prefer to be on benefits by the seaside’) has gotten completely over-excited and started trying to cut migration in about forty different directions without a clear idea of what she’s doing in any of them. For starters, she’s ready to create a ‘multi-tiered’ system for international students where some universities will be able to have international students and some won’t, apparently based on the quality of the university. No one really knows what she means by that – is she talking about Oxbridge and the Russell Group? Is she talking about league tables? Does she intend to judge quality by School, Faculty or overall University, because all would be unfair in some way? No one knows. Amber Rudd doesn’t know. She’s literally just swimming around in a pool of nonsense, wishing she was in UKIP.
She also intends to stop foreign people from ‘taking jobs British people could do’, meaning that she has now actually come about as close as anyone in recent political memory to saying ‘bloody foreigners, coming over here, taking our jobs’ and still expecting to be taken seriously. She wants businesses to create ‘lists’ of foreign workers they employ. LISTS. Actual lists of people who weren’t born in this country. What will she do with these lists? Probably eat them. She is edging ever closer to madness; a paranoid dystopia where foreigners are waiting round every corner to be educated and earn a living. Terrifying.
We are currently living in the most divided, politically-fraught period of our generation. We have seen, many times, that there are people in this country who are responding to Brexit (oh, how I loathe that phrase) with hatred, with isolationism, with divisions and with fear. Read back through this article. Read what our political leaders – those people who run the country – are saying.
Is it any wonder we’re divided? Is it any wonder hatred flourishes?
Our country is running on hate. And the Tories are in the engine room, gleeful smiles on their faces, shovelling coal onto the fire as we soar ever closer to disaster.