Archive for ken livingstone

Boris and the BNP – a marriage made in Hell

Posted in fuckwits, Media, People, Politics, The Written Word, Today's Society with tags , , , , , , , on April 2, 2008 by bootlegmarkchapman

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I don’t suppose it’s a massive surprise that the BNP have recommended that their voters in the London mayoral election give their second preference vote to Boris Johnson. The humour – and the irony – in the situation comes from the efforts by both parties to distance themselves from one another. They are both clearly concerned with the sensibilities of their potential core vote – Tories and those impressed by celebrity on Boris’ side, unreconstructed Nazis on Barnbrook’s. While the BNP are concerned that being too glowing about Boris will upset the voters who don’t think the Tory party are quite racist enough, Boris is playing the “don’t take that ‘piccaninny’ stuff too seriously, I’m a lovable rogue” card. But in this case, Boris and the BNP are well-matched.

The article from which the “piccaninny” quotes came often gives rise to howls of foul play – innocent words taken out of context and all that – but there aren’t many ways that a description of African people as “piccaninnies” can be taken. In fact, there is only one way, and it’s hideously patronising towards an entire race. Yes, it is racism. And it’s far from the only instance in that article, let alone Johnson’s entire public career. It may well be that the leaden-footed intervention from the Brainless Nazi Party is a timely boost to those fighting against Johnson’s campaign, and we may at least have them to thank for that.

Currently, according to a recent Evening Standard poll, support for Johnson outstrips Ken Livingstone’s by 10%. For the most part, Johnson’s support hinges on two things:

  1. This would be Livingstone’s third term as Mayor. Though he is widely seen as having done a good job, there is a concern over the freshness of his leadership, and this is aggravated by the current unpopularity of the Labour government.
  2. People have seen Boris on the telly, and they find all that “Gosh, cripes” stuff funny and endearing. While this is precisely the last thing that should be used to justify voting him in as Mayor, it’s working for him because people forget that the future of their city would be negatively affected by having a pompous moron at the head of its legislative assembly.

There is not much that can be done about the first, outside of continuing to push the message that Ken has already been pushing. Therefore to keep Boris from getting in and making an absolute cunt of everything, it is on the second of these two fronts that he must be challenged, and it is key that people continue to draw attention to Boris’ sniffy expression of distaste for black people. It could, therefore, be very helpful to make a nod to the fact that the BNP seem very comfortable with the idea of Boris as Mayor. For all that they lampoon him as a joke candidate, he’s scarcely any more ludicrous a personality than Richard Barnbrook or Nick Eriksen, who today had to stand down from the assembly election because he was exposed as someone who thinks it’s OK for husbands to rape their wives. Briefly continuing this tangent, it’s amusing that the freaks accuse the media of taking Eriksen’s comments out of context when the blog is still up and if anything, makes him look even more of a knuckle-dragger than the excerpts that have been widely quoted.

What is absolutely certain is this:  we can laugh at the idea of Boris Johnson as a serious politician until the cows come home and make comedy racist jibes about the yaks.  But at the moment there is a very real danger that, come May, he could be mayor of one of the most important cities on the planet.  It will be harder to laugh when he welcomes delegates from all over the world and causes widespread offence by laughing at their clothes.  Prince Philip may be a colonial throwback with a regrettably loose tongue, but at least he’s subservient to his more circumspect, more civilised wife.  When Boris next says something horrendous, it could be that there’s no-one to slap him down, because if a bunch of star-struck, politically illiterate people have their way, he’ll be the highest authority in his firm.  The fact that the BNP are pushing for this to happen should be a wake-up call for people who might let this happen.

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