The answer to Brian’s question last night is, well, no. Not yet. As swiftly as two senior members of his administration resigned they were replaced with willing volunteers. The old rules of politics do not apply.
Or they do not apply to populists like Boris Johnson, even it seems, when they are seen to be deeply unpopular. They view themselves as men (or women) of destiny who are not tractable to public opinion.
However this morning starts with yet another resignation (Solicitor General, Alex Chalk), so there may be some way to go yet. Meanwhile in Northern Ireland, politics returns the ennui of no self government.
Fionnuala O’Connor in the Irish News…
Everyone hears the unionist complaint that their anger is ignored. But the DUP Stormont boycott masterminded by Jim Allister consists of nothing else but anger. Many in the media must hear other people muttering what about us, hey.
Though where is this resentment to go. The two SDLP MPs have voiced it well in Westminster, recognised – by more than their voters at home – as ‘at least Claire and Colum/those two/Hanna and Eastwood get up on their hind-legs and let the Tories have it’.
Listen hard and read carefully and you can see that Sinn Féin supporters dislike this sentiment. Hard to openly attack, though – because that would point up their own absent, though admittedly mostly inarticulate MPs?
It’s also hard to locate a pulse on which to place a finger when politics is stuck as the north is now stuck, waiting for The End of Boris. Anger out of the side of mouths at a funeral or a wake has to go somewhere.
Will it be saved up for the next election, fuel a switch of allegiance, a non-unionist and anti-unionist boycott of the polls? Internal exile and public silence? Hard to not see that as one big sulk.
Older northerners know how that damaged their parents’ generation.
Indeed. Simply passively sitting and watching action in that outer world is unlikely to bring the bigger adventures of the wider world to us… Can someone local do something other than riot or burn a fleg?
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty