Johnson will eventually lose because he fails the “decency test”

This by William Hague in “The Times” today is a very fine article indeed. Informed, analytical and measured. There is a tinge of regret, as you’d expect from a Conservative, but no sentimental tosh. And it avoids completely the nonsense being spouted by others about “getting the big calls right” , a claim that is self evidently the reverse of the truth.

William Hague calls Boris Johnson a “Gifted Leader”

Hague uses the term “gifted leader” to describe Johnson and given the good sense of the rest of the piece I wondered why. I think it may be a bit of envy of Johnson’s charisma, not a characteristic one would associate with Hague who has never been Tiggerish. For that is what I think Johnson is at his best – a bouncing self-confident creature who entertains and perhaps inspires in a devil-may-care way. Boris is Boris.

But leadership is more complex and more nuanced than this. Theresa May couldn’t hack it because she was dull and frit. Cameron made a good fist of it for a while by following the model of Blair who, warts and all, was along with Thatcher Britain’s best post war leader. Every leader is a one-off – providing there is intellect and decency there is an infinite number of leadership models.

Johnson fails the leadership test because he fails the “decency” test. He is a lying reprobate and after a while people get sick of that. It’s not that he sells snake oil, though he does, but that he has no discernible moral compass. It was not Johnson’s performance on trial in the vote but his character.

One thought on “Johnson will eventually lose because he fails the “decency test”

  1. Johnson has had every opportunity, denied to most to become a respected political leader and gifted statesman. Instead because of his character flaws and you are absolutely right about that, he blew up his entire career.
    If you look closely at his antecedents he has done something similar all his life, especially in his relationships with women.
    The fact that Johnson became PM meant it was always going to end in tears and recrimination. Like his failed relationships he blows everything up when it suits. Not deliberately but by a careless lack of thought or deed. He’s mad, bad and dangerous to know.
    The fact that he is unsuitable not just as a leader of the country or a political party it is also a severe indictment on the people that put him in that position and have kept him there.
    His metier in life is journalism sitting on a bar stool somewhere crying into his beer. His future awaits I cannot think he has anything other to offer anyone than this.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s