Dumb and Dumber

There’s something unsettling about being ruled-over by people who are clearly dense. We live in a kind of Oligarchy of Morons. It’s well established that many Tories suffer a deficiency of moral values, but growing evidence suggests some of them are also just forensically thick. Liam Fox, Liz Truss, David Davis, Boris Johnson and our own Jackson Carlaw: these people aren’t known for their over-thinking. As my friend put it of our very own Secretary of State for Scotland & MP for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale: “If he were any more stupid, he’d have to be watered twice a week.”

There’s loads of them.

Take poor Justin Tomlinson, the junior work and pensions minister, who this week told a committee of MPs that people could “take in a lodger” to beat the benefit cap. There was the remarkable Owen Paterson, who blamed the badgers for not taking part in the cull in 2013. “The badgers moved the goalposts” he explained. More recently we had the unfortunate Dominic Raab who hadn’t got his head around the fact that Britain is an island:

“I hadn’t quite understood the full extent of this, but if you look at the UK and look at how we trade in goods, we are particularly reliant on the Dover-Calais crossing” he intoned.

Keeping to the issues of our “Coastal State” (as we’ve now been designated) here’s poor Ross Thomson asking for a letter about the fish– and take pity on the famously dithering Scottish Tory MP Kirstene Hair, who didn’t vote in the EU referendum as she didn’t know which way to vote, and now says she doesn’t know how to vote on the Prime Minister’s deal. Hmmm, tricky this thinking business innit?

Remember Karen Bradley, who betraying a room temperature IQ admitted she was unaware that “nationalists did not vote for unionists and that unionists did not vote for nationalists” – in Northern Ireland.

Then there was the MP for West Leicestershire Andrew Bridgen who made the bewildering claim that all English people are entitled to an Irish passport, just cos, well, just cos they’re English.

But this division between being a vile racist/homophobe/general bigot and being stupid maybe an artificial one. Take Anne Widdecombe, now rehabilitated as a national treasure despite being the the former Prisons Minister who insisted that women prisoners should be manacled to their hospital beds while giving birth.

Or where would you place the Food bank enthusiast Esther McVey? Or Alastair Marjury?

Of course all parties have their fair share of dozy members. George Foulkes isn’t exactly the sharpest tool in the toolbox is he? And UKIP’s David Coburn is famously thick as mince.

But there’s a growing realisation that the Tories are a special case. Even normally loyal scribes seem to be catching on: “Scotland’s Tory MPs are no-marks. Brexit has cruelly exposed them as divided, ineffectual, naive and incoherent.”

But in the olden days this calibre of dope wasn’t in charge. Tebbit, Lawson and Thatcher were many things but they weren’t dumb. Mandy and Blair may have been war-mongering Tories in disguise but they weren’t stoopid. So what has caused this decline in our rulers?

Have they been dumbed-down by ingesting their own media? Reading the Daily Mail every day for years can have serious side-effects. Have the clever Tories retired or left politics? It may be that the smart ones operate in the shadows and push the dopes and the dupes into the limelight.

Whatever the reason our low-grade leaders are in charge hustling us into the potential economic disaster-zone of a No Deal Brexit fallout. Maybe we’re the stupid ones.

Describing David Davis, the writer John Crace noted: “Detail and Davis are barely on nodding terms. Partly because leaving the EU is a great deal more complicated than he expected, but mainly because he’s hopelessly out of his depth. Davis has yet to be asked any question, no matter how straightforward, that doesn’t take him completely by surprise.”

 

 

Comments (20)

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  1. Angus says:

    Ross Thomson is the worst of the lot.

    Or maybe it is just that I know him personally, having had the misfortune of sitting in uni lectures and tutorials with him for four years.

    He is punishingly thick and was a laughing stock that was almost universally loathed. It used to be amusing when he used to run for various elected positions but now it is dangerous with him closer to achieving his ultimate goal- prime minister.

    He is a zealot with no self awareness that simply follows orders in order to embellish himself with certain elements of the party in order to further his position. He has no mind of his own.

    1. MBC says:

      How did he manage to get a first class degree according to his Wikipedia page?

      1. David Millar says:

        I was told, many years ago, that the secret to getting a First was a good memory and good handwriting.

        1. MBC says:

          As an academic, I can assure you that’s not true. I was just wondering if the Wikipedia entry is a fib.

      2. scrandoonyeah says:

        As everyone should know there is more to a person than just academic intelligence……..there is emotional, psychological, practical to name just a few.
        It gets on my goat when people are defined only by their academic qualifications and are therefore elevated in status within society without any other measure being taken into account. It reeks of one-dimensional intellectual snobbery. Because a person has a first class degree, does that make them clever…..duh

        The reality is that there are a lot of ‘clever fools’ out there who appear to be clever but will always be a fool…………Ross Thomson?

      3. Angus says:

        It’s true, he did get a first class degree but I’m sure has a below or average IQ at best.

        What he does have is determination and obsession. He was/is completely one dimensional and was possessed by the Conservatives ideology with Margaret Thatcher being his hero.

        Whilst I, and others, were out having a good time and developing other skills he was constantly and consistently plotting to get elected.

        He has no interest in his constituents it’s all about him, his career and power.

        If you asked his opinion on anything outside the conservative party or factional politics he was clueless.

        A first class degree but still a first class buffoon…

        1. MBC says:

          As someone once said, it’s not what you’ve got, it’s what you do with it.

        2. MBC says:

          Your description sounds like he lacks emotional intelligence and his view of the world lacks emotional nuance. He is a clumsy clot in that sense. That’s always a scary combination when somebody is academically capable, very capable, but they just don’t get it, and are living in a different reality from the rest of us. Someone who can tell you the price of everything but can’t understand the value of anything.

          1. Angus says:

            Yes he lacks intelligence both emotionally and cognitively.

            The only reason he got a first is that politics was/is his life. He was fed answers by those in the upper echelons of the party and parrotted the party line verbatim at every opportunity and in tutorials. He understands the system but can’t think outside the system- in that sense he is severely limited, almost retarded.

            Have a look at his Twitter feed and you’ll see a brief glimpse into his mind.

            There is no depth, no real reasoning.

            At uni his sometime sidekicks in the student conservatives were far more reasonable and open to others opinions- Thomson couldn’t understand the concepts.

            The real brains was Marek Zemanik who is now head of policy for Ruth Davidson. His arguments are more nuanced- research him.

            I’ve been on an all day bender, so forgive my coherence…

  2. John B Dick says:

    I expect that soon will come the day when some socialist or nationalist expresses the opinion that we would be better off wih Margaret Thatcher.

    I have passed that point myself with Michael Forsyth.

    At a discussion of academic fashions in economics, I started by saying that AT THE TIME, I thought that the government of Harold Macmillan was a disaster. This was met with such laughter that I completely forgot what I was going to say. Nobody previously ever laughed at my jokes or at my mistakes like that.

    Harold Macmillan didn’t have UKIP or ERG. He didn’t even have John Major’s ‘bastards’. He had the Primrose League, and in the same party he had Butskellites and One Nation Conservatives.

    Maybe losing the generation that had seen war service is the root of the problem, though Harold Wilson started the practice of ceding policy to PR ‘professionals’ instead of letting politicians think, write books, etc.

  3. Jo says:

    “If he were any more stupid he’d have to be watered twice a week.”

    I think that’s very offensive to plants.

  4. Paula C Williams says:

    I agree about the stupid, and/or ignorant /class bound, but Thatcher, Lawson, Tebbit, Mandelson and Blair suffered or suffer from an ’empathy deficiency’. Is this innate or learnt? I don’t know.

  5. John O'Dowd says:

    Oligarchy of Morons? Good description – but slightly clumsy. How about a Scots/Greek hybrid I’ve used before: Numptocracy?

    1. Apparently the term is : kakistocracy.

      1. Donald John Mac Innes says:

        Is that from the Gaelic word “cac”?

  6. Gordon Benton says:

    The astonishing stoopidity of the Tory Party elected members you write about, has been a cause for alarm for some time now. We are beginning to believe that the Eton – Oxbridge education political assembly-line is dangerously damaged, and maybe beyond repair. The World watches on with amused fascination, witnessing a country in great decline.

  7. florian albert says:

    By concentrating entirely on the Tories, Bella Caledonia is missing the wider political crisis looming. Theresa May is being criticized from all sides. One reason that she can remain serene is that she – and she alone – has (just about) a deal with the EU. Everybody else has nothing.
    There is almost no chance of a different deal being done. This means that those voting down Theresa May’s deal brings the ‘potential economic disaster-zone of a No Deal Brexit’ closer. With the deadline for leaving the EU set at the end of March 2019, this is very close indeed. For Labour and for the SNP, this creates huge difficulties. Once they have voted down Theresa May’s deal – assuming that it what happens, the ‘own’ the problem of getting a deal done at the eleventh hour.
    My guess is that Labour, in a panic, would go for a second referendum. It is very doubtful that they could get this through the Commons.
    In those circumstances, the Commons might well accept Theresa’ May’s deal as what it is, the best available because it is the only one available.

    1. MBC says:

      That’s been glaringly obvious to me for some time. So I have wondered if there is a secret Plan B. Or if all this bluff and bluster is just for show to their voters and they will just all accept it in the end.

      1. Wul says:

        Robert Preston’s blog has the answer, via Amber Rudd.:
        Parliament votes down May’s deal. Economic doom then seems imminent, MP’s keech their drawers and vote through a slightly tweaked face-saving version the second time round.

  8. Davo says:

    Absolutely: you can’t find a decent quality war criminal in the British establishment any more.

    Aaron Davis’ book ‘Reckless Opportunist’ explains the rise of the f*ckwit to high office (I would argue in Scotland especially). Even better, rewatch the first episode of Chris Morris’s ‘Nathan Barley’. It’s THE RISE OF THE IDIOTS!

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