Bringing back the funnyman

LEP Columnist Barry FreemanLEP Columnist Barry Freeman
LEP Columnist Barry Freeman
This week heralded the return of Comedy Boris Johnson, did you see?

Britain’s Foreign Secretary, one of the highest offices of our State, capering on the front of several national newspapers, notably The Times, jogging round a park dressed like a blind clown.

Why? Nobody knows. As at least one astute commentator observed, here was an event as spontaneous as any Kardashian photoshoot. Think that contrived zipwire stunt prior to the London Olympics...

So it begins, I thought. Detoxification of a noxious brand.

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A man who responded to Barack Obama’s personal opinion as to how he thought Brexit might play out in the longer-term, long after he had left office, by branding him a grudgeful “part-Kenyan” out to settle Imperial scores.

Presumably on behalf of those “piccaninnies” with “watermelon smiles” who Boris once said turned out for the Queen on her global travels. A man perhaps more associated than any other with THAT bus and THAT Leave slogan. Remember? He parked on the Flag Market for a few snaps alongside Gove and a small crowd they brought along for this purpose.

But bad Boris is gone now! Gosh crumbs, BoJo is back! There, on the front of Rupert Murdoch’s flagship title! Isn’t he comical?

No, he’s the most coldly driven political operator of recent decades, and his scheming for the top job no more ended by Gove’s hand last summer than did his powerful supporters turn away. Indeed, knowing what is now known of the relationship between Gove and Murdoch, it is not hard to read that as a proprietorial hand on the shoulder, a murmured ‘this isn’t your time, yet, champ’.

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Coming in the week Brexit minister David Davis confessed the flow of EU workers into the UK will likely continue undiminished, this impression hardened.

Needless to say Farage flipped, talk was of ‘betrayal’, and we were reminded the road to Brexit is one Sword of Damocles after another for the bitterly divided Conservatives.

This circus has only just begun, and the biggest clown in the troupe has just re-entered the ring.