To argue that in days of yore Politics attracted the very best of these islands would be stretching credulity. But overall it was a decent profession and those treading the political boards, whether you agreed with them or not, were mostly able, smart, decent and principled. In the last ten years or so that has disappeared almost completely.
The present Cabinet is decried daily by political observers – this is a randomly selected exposé of the “Worst Cabinet in History” there are dozens of similar diatribes around.
Priti Patel is arguably the “Worst Among Equals” in the Cabinet though perhaps not head and shoulders above the rest (an improbable assertion about our vertically challenged Home Secretary). But she really is awful.
There is a video on YouTube of Ian Hislop destroying Patel for her support for the Death Penalty. I have always thought that Capital Punishment is the acid test of anybody’s personality. Before abolition the hangers and floggers were a vile tribe and those of us who campaigned against them were tested not to grab them by the lapels and nut them. We mostly did apply restraint.
Patel as a “Hanger” could be dismissed as an eccentric throwback were she not Home Secretary and were her views on this subject not genuinely illustrative of her views on everything else. That she bullied her staff should be no surprise – one Civil Servant stated bluntly: “She hates us and we all hate her.”Another official said: “What’s become abundantly clear is that she is out for herself and only interested in how this plays out publicly.”
Well ambition is the fatal flaw of not just Priti Patel but most around her at the Cabinet table and certainly of the man at its head. But with Patel the ambition is combined with stupidity and wickedness. A menacing combination. She is dumb as well as dangerous and degenerate.
The “Rwanda solution” for refugees seems not to have been dreamed up in a debate at some modern day “Wannsee” type conference but in the dark recesses of Ms Patel’s head. It is an idea so transparently evil that the fact that it is being attempted says as much about our Government’s absence of checks and balances as it does about Patel’s malignancy.
Whether the populism that drives all of Patel’s actions will slip her up we will see. Her comments on the ECHR ruling were beyond shameful, but that is what she does and what she is.