• Development Intelligence

The Self Delusion of Politicians

Think on this: there were 102 Tory MPs (allegedly, if one believes anything the Boris camp say) who actually thought that Boris was the right guy to lead the country through the current economic turmoil. You know, the guy 86 of them said wasn’t fit to be PM this summer and who had become an international laughingstock. That Boris. The same guy who is currently still under investigation for lying by the House of Commons Privileges Committee and thus may face a recall petition if found guilty and admonished by the committee. That Boris.

Think on this too: there were almost 30 Tory MPs that thought Penny Mordaunt, who has never run anything significant or achieved anything remarkable, should lead our nation through the current crisis. It was painful TV watching one of her backbench supporters being interviewed by Andrew Neil last weekend desperately trying to spin her indifferent track record, bouncing from one junior government role to another, as just the right experience for a future PM.

Our politicians seem to have developed an almost bulletproof ability to self-delude. And not just the Tories, they’re all at it.

The opposition parties are currently demanding an immediate General Election because Rishi ‘doesn’t have a mandate’. What is this new test all Tory PMs now seemingly must have, this ‘mandate’ thing?

The DI team doesn’t recall Lib Dem MPs having this view in 2010 when they stitched up the Coalition Agreement in private in a Whitehall back room, a government agenda literally no voter had a chance to even look at let alone vote on.

We don’t recall Labour MPs in 2007 saying that Gordon Brown wasn’t legitimately PM after he’d finally bullied Blair out of government and was ‘coronated’ by his Parliamentary party without any voters or even Labour members having a chance to vote in exactly the same way Rishi Sunak has just come to power.

We don’t recall Major taking over from Thatcher or Callaghan taking over from Wilson being greeted with any of this sanctimonious nonsense.

Goodness, what has our political class become?