For a change, I’m going to begin the latest edition of The Week In Tory with some news about Labour.
Don't think this makes things any better, because it doesn't.
I implore you, by all you hold dear, not to read this.
Under Labour, NHS wait averaged 9 weeks.
After 13 years in power, the Tories’ latest PM, a deep-fake Thunderbird called Rishi Sunak, promised “bring waiting lists down” to 18 months as one of his “Five big pledges”.
This week Steve Barclay admitted missing that pledge.
It’s OK if you don’t know who Steve Barclay is: his own family couldn’t pick him out of a line-up of one. He’s so bland his DNA profile says “404 error”. His official photo is the curtains behind him. He’s safe from my usual character assassination, cos he was born without one.
Another Sunak “key pledge” is to bring interest rates under control, so let’s see how that’s going:
This week, interest rates rose for the 12th consecutive time, reaching their highest level for 15 years.
Asked why inflation is higher in UK than other parts of the world, Professor Martin Weale (ex Bank of England economist) put it down to “the effects of Brexit and limiting immigration”.
So the Tories said they had to limit more immigration to make Brexit come true.
The immigration bill reached the Lords, and Sunak urged them not to “override the will of the people”.
The people didn’t vote for this bill, which isn’t in any manifesto.
And nobody – not even Tory members – voted for Little Rishi Sunak.
Tory Lord Farmer told parliament: “Two-fifths of people think stopping the small boats is more important than tackling NHS waiting lists”
In fact immigration is the most important issue to fewer than one fifth of us, and the NHS is most important to 55 per cent.
Immigration minister Robert Jenrick claimed “the Refugee Convention says people should seek sanctuary in the first safe country”.
So Number 10 had to issue a statement saying the immigration minister was wrong about the basics of immigration policy.
The Archbishop of Canterbury called government migrant policy “morally unacceptable and politically impractical” that would cause “great damage to the UK’s interests and reputation”.
“The Archbishop is wrong”, tweeted top bishop-basher Andrew RT Davies.
Suella Braverman was officially rebuked for the second time for claiming 100 million migrants are coming to the UK.
Michael Heseltine said Braverman was generating “a very nasty flavour of commentary” on immigration.
The former head of the British Army, given a peerage by the Tories, said Braverman was “continuing to run down the remaining political capital” of Sunak’s administration.
.But he can do that on all his own, as Sunak abandoned the Tory pledge to recruit 6000 GPs.
.He said people should be happy that there are 2000 more GPs than in 2019.
There are actually 825 fewer.
Then Sunak took a £6,000 helicopter journey for a trip that would have cost £30 by train and got him there faster.
He announced that pharmacists would now be able to hand out antibiotics instead of non-existent GPs doing it.
The pharmacy Sunak’s own mother had worked at said “there is not enough funding for pharmacies” and “providing antibiotics over the counter is not a good idea”.
The pharmacist said the idea wouldn’t work unless pharmacy staff got more training.
But rather than do that, the Tories suggested doctors should get LESS training.
The Tories now want school-leavers to “skip university” and go straight into a job as an NHS doctor.
Even the Telegraph asked “who in their right mind would trust the work-experience GP”.
Some Tories now want Penny Mordaunt to replace work-experience PM Sunak, on the grounds she has the key prime ministerial attribute of looking good in a Battlestar Galactica costume.
Housing news: and it is now 4 years and 4 PMs since a planned ban on no-fault evictions was first announced by Theresa May, a low-budget supervillain who looked like she’d cut your nose off with a pair of pinking shears if you said “less” instead of “fewer”.
The legislation still hasn’t been published, and figures this week showed no-fault evictions rose by 50 per cent.
The Tories also quietly dropped their promise to abolish “feudal” leaseholds, all of which is great news for landlords and landowners, but not so much for you or me.
This week we plumbed the shallows of Lee Anderson’s intellect: on Monday he said if people didn’t like this country they should emigrate.
On Wednesday, a singer said she didn’t like this country and wanted to emigrate, so Anderson attacked her on social media.
After every single UKIP councillor in England hilariously lost their seat in the recent election, the rump of UKIP is now called the Reclaim Party, and this week it was joined by Andrew Bridgen, the rump of the Tory party.
In 2019, Spud-u-Hate had said Anna Soubry should face a by-election when she changed parties.
This week, Bridgen rejected calls to face a by-election after he changed parties.
He then started a lawsuit against Matt Hancock, a kind of PeeWee Herman reflected in the back of a spoon, who had accused him of spouting “antisemitic, anti-vax, anti-scientific conspiracy theories”.
Is it OK for me to hope they both lose?
Bridgen was kicked out of the Tory party for comparing Covid vaccines with the Holocaust, which Sunak said was “completely unacceptable”.
Sunak then refused to rule out an alliance with the Reclaim Party, which would make “completely unacceptable” Bridgen accepted again.
A Number 10 spokesman ruled out deals with other parties two hours later, making it one of their longer-lasting policies.
Earlier this year, Sunak promised to scrap 4000 EU laws within his first 100 days.
He then shunted his deadline back to “by the end of the year”.
This week Kemi Badenoch cancelled the whole thing
So, because they love parliamentary sovereignty so much, the Tories gave £4m to a private Anglo-American law firm, and asked them to scrap our laws instead.
Works out at £1k per law.
It typically takes parliament between 2 months and 2 years to pass or repeal a law, so £1k should do it, right?
Honey Monster Boris Johnson got 245 times that much from taxpayers for his PartyGate legal bill.
.He’s worth an estimated £6m.
.Anyway: Badenoch said she had to scrap the scrapping of laws that protect us, because civil servants had been uncooperative.
.An hour later she told the house of commons she’d really scrapped the policy cos she’d thought of a better idea.
.But she couldn’t tell anybody what it is.
.Meanwhile the EU restricted the amount of arsenic in baby food, a law that – praise be – the UK is now free from. Yay!
Badenoch ended up getting bollocked by absolutely everybody, not least The Speaker, who shouted “Who do you think you’re speaking to?” at her.
Mark Francois, who is as short as two thick planks (and vice versa), asked her “What on earth are you playing at?”
Jacob Rees-Mogg, the precise physical intersection of a macabre bassoon and the aura of rickets, accused Badenoch of “lacking ministerial drive”.
And then he accused his own party leader of “behaving like a Borgia”.
It’s 2 weeks since Richard Sharp resigned as BBC chairman for helping arrange a secret £800k loan for Boris Johnson, so other parties called for a politically independent BBC chair next time.
Tories rejected that, and instead announced that they want to scrap the license fee.
Karren Brady said all teachers should quit and get another job rather than a pay rise, and then we’d employ new teachers (who don’t exist) for higher wages.
No, I don’t get it either.
But teachers seem to be way ahead of Brady – there are now 46,500 unfillable vacancies for teachers, and the body representing them called it an “unaddressed crisis” that will damage Britain’s economy for a generation. Meh. Sack ’em all.
Freeports news! Ben Houchen, a Tory Mayor on Teeside, denied “industrial scale corruption” after reports he’d sold land valued at £482m to a private company for £100.
Quite right too. Land registry records show he actually sold it for £96.79 (ex VAT).
Once it runs as a Freeport, it’ll be largely able to make up its own policies and conditions, and become a part of Britain that is literally run by an unelected corporation.
Oh, and the government is giving corporations taxpayers money to do this.
Liz Truss, ITV4 made flesh, decided to follow up on her scatological experiment with Britain’s economy by flying to Taiwan to start a war with China.
The Tory chair of the foreign affairs committee called it “the worst kind of Instagram diplomacy”.
After the Met Police pre-crimes division arrested 64 innocent people for merely *thinking* about doing a protest, Tories lined up to condemn the tentpole Tory anti-protest policy that Tories had boasted about passing only one week earlier.
Their signature policing policy was condemned by:
– David Davis (so good, they named him once)
– Chris Philp (a shaved mandrill that has escaped its enclosure)
– and Desmond Swayne (the reanimated corpse of Alvin Stardust).
Suella Braverman – Heinrich Hamster – shrugged it off, saying she wouldn’t intervene in police operations.
It is two weeks since Braverman – Joseph Gerbils – intervened in police operations when she opposed the seizing of racist dolls from a pub in Kent.
Steve Brine, Tory chair of the health committee, was found guilty of breaching ministerial rules when lobbying ministers during the pandemic, as part of his second job working for private health company.
After the government’s badger cull killed literally half the badgers in the country, an official report called the policy “a self-perpetuating failure”, “confused and flawed” and “ineffective and misguided”.
So the government expanded the cull areas.
Andy Haldane – the economic advisor to “hey, at least he’s less mad than Kwarteng” chancellor Jeremy Hunt – said the government has a “dearth of coherent strategy” and is “not really in the race at any kind of scale”.
Haldane was previously on the government’s Industrial Strategy Council, before the government abolished the Industrial Strategy Council.
This week Tory minister Greg Clark called that abolition “a piece of vandalism that was completely without purpose”.
And finally, the govt said the retirement age will have to be raised “after the next election”, but refused to do it now, because bewildered pensioners are the only people who still vote for this havoc
My forthcoming book about this is a lot less stressful than the thread. Or just as stressful, but with longer jokes.
If you order it now, your name goes in the back, and I can afford to feed my dog.