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Will Cummings bring Johnson down?

Nov 15, 2011
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There's at least 2 people agreed now to swear on oath he said it. Apparently when he said it, it was the only topic of debate in no 10.

I agree with Frank :shock: though, the refurbishment is no big deal, its not taxpayers money, (unlike the Arcuri affair) with the following caveats. Its not denied it was funded by the Tory party via a donation. By not declaring this within 30 days they have broken the law. There will be an audit trail and the question now is who is the donor who they are so reluctant to reveal? Surely not the beneficiary of a PPE contract or some other quid pro quo?

With regard to the crass comment of letting the bodies pile high, I don't think anyone is surprised by Johnson's insensitivity and amorality. Civil servants are saying today he said of the virus "let it rip" last year before the 2nd lockdown. He said about Libya post war it could be the next Dubai "all they have to do is clear the dead bodies away", and we heard yesterday Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe faces another year in an Iranian cell all because Johnson threw out careless and untrue comments when he couldn't be bothered to find out the basic details of her case. In my opinion he didn't mean any malice by the comment but I don't think he would have felt any responsibility or regret if it had happened ie his entire life has been about his own success with no regard for anyone else, wives, mistresses, children, colleagues employers, he's lied to and betrayed them all. Its not immorality like Trump but amorality, the absence of any moral compass or caring for anyone but himself.
 
Apr 15, 2004
2,882
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East Devon
I go along with Quinny's earlier assertion (with one caveat) that this smells very much like a some fish scraps thrown to the dogs to distract them from the real meat. The real scandal he should be under intense scrutiny for is the whole corrupt system of lobbying, personal access to power, secretive off-the-record deals, favours for mates and the old-school tie you-scratch-my-back 'chumocracy' that appears to be at the heart of this government. We've already seen it in action during the pandemic ("ah but that was an emergency so we just blah, blah, blah"). Yes, we (the taxpayer) just handed over billions to incompetent and patently unqualified people who just happened to be buddies on speed-dial to those in power.

So all the stuff about who paid what to re-decorate a flat or exactly what crass and offensive crap BJ yelled in his office is just diversionary nonsense. That's not to say it won't damage him a bit in the short term and it is a little unfortunate there are (relatively minor) elections coming up - but it is all quite survivable and will soon be forgotten.But it is exactly the sort of easily digestible, eye-catching and headline grabbing stories Trump routinely trotted out to divert from matters of real consequence - the meaty stuff that may take a bit of effort to follow but is so potentially serious and quite possibly illegal could finish him. Far better to have people getting upset about wallpaper.

The caveat I would add is that it's nothing to do with BoJo's personal scheming or his own masterly manipulation of the news agenda. Like Trump, I honestly think Johnson is every bit as as dim and shallow as he appears. No - I'm quite sure there are much smarter people than him in charge of that sort of thing and I rather think he is probably hating every second of it and quite hurt and bewildered by it all. In that respect he is very different to Trump (who genuinely has a dark heart and soul and I shudder to think what kind of monster he could have become given the right circumstance). But apart from a nauseating sense of entitlement that assumes rules only apply to other people, I'd give Johnson the benefit of the doubt that there is nothing fundamentally malevolent about him. Yes, he's amoral in his personal life (but then who cares?) and he will happily lie his way out of any tight spot. Yes, he will stupidly go along with genuinely nasty characters who have cultivated his friendship (like the time a 'mate' wanted a journalist beaten up and he gave him his address). But the phrase "there is much less to him than meets the eye" could have been written for this bungling Prime Minister of ours.
 
Nov 15, 2011
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Excellent stuff Ave It.

Regarding the refurbishments, although on the surface it is minor in nature and not taxpayers money it does reveal a lot about his and his partners' characters. Apparently the John Lewis furniture was regarded as tat and they bought eg wallpaper at £850 a roll a £5,000 drinks trolley and a £12,000 owl lantern. And at least in the first instance they didn't even pay for it themselves. How must that look to the nurses who saved his life and were awarded with a real term pay cut?

It may also tie in to the bigger question of corruption at the heart of Government when we find out who funded it in the first place. This should have been declared already and the Cabinet Secretary refused point blank to do so yesterday. If it turns out to be a quid pro quo from someone who commercially benefited from the Government eg PPE contracts, that would be illegal. I mean say you were the 35 year old Miami jewellery designer with no expertise or experience in supplying PPE and you were awarded PPE contracts worth £270 million while experienced UK providers were being passed over, you might be quite happy to stump up £58k to that Government Just a bit of speculation but not entirely idle until they reveal who it was.
 
Jul 15, 2006
3,892
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Kenton, Devon
I think Sarah Vine has just made John Lewis the new Ratners, after saying this morning that the PM can't be seen living in a skip. Probably getting things ready for the changes she'll demand when she and Gove move into the flat after Boris is kicked out...
 

MickyD

Pasoti Donor
Dec 30, 2004
3,256
44
Brighton
I wonder if this is one of those things that seemed trivial compared to so much else but ends up being the one that snowballs and leads to a dramatic conclusion?

Electoral Commission to investigate PM flat funding

I don't follow the relationships between the rightwing rags and the PM, but I'm a little surprised that the Daily Mail seems so down on Bozo now. Can anyone shed any light?
 
Nov 15, 2011
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300
A couple of things Micky, the Mail has shifted from the far right since Geordie Grieg (a staunch remainer) took over from Paul Dacre as editor.

Then we have leading features journo Sarah Vine , partner of Michael Gove. Gove and Cummings are as thick as thieves and I'm sure Cummings came to the Mail first with the revelations. These scoops would have been huge circulation boosters and if the Mail didn't publish them someone else would have.
 
Jul 15, 2006
3,892
57
Kenton, Devon
MickyD":jheirdt7 said:
I wonder if this is one of those things that seemed trivial compared to so much else but ends up being the one that snowballs and leads to a dramatic conclusion?

Electoral Commission to investigate PM flat funding

I still can't see anything serious coming from this. But, watching PMQ's, Boris very nearly lost it at the end under Starmer's questioning. Almost reminded me of Jack Nicholson's rant at the end of A Few Good Men... Me thinks he protests too much (yeah, OK, I know that's from Macbeth...)

Then again, if this was a non-story, how would Tory voters react if, hypothetically, Corbyn was in No 10 and it was found that a union was implicated in funding the refurbishment of the flat? I'm sure they'd be the first to say that nothing was improper and the public wouldn't be interested...
 
May 16, 2016
3,874
216
MickyD":6gqyvp9k said:
I wonder if this is one of those things that seemed trivial compared to so much else but ends up being the one that snowballs and leads to a dramatic conclusion?

Electoral Commission to investigate PM flat funding

I don't follow the relationships between the rightwing rags and the PM, but I'm a little surprised that the Daily Mail seems so down on Bozo now. Can anyone shed any light?

There's definitely been some form of falling out. We could consider the PMs previous careers and the high probability of making a few enemies within it along the way. It does seem that there's a concerted effort to push a few dominoes over at the moment.

Considering when a lot of these recent revelations are said to have occurred, the timing of their release so close to a raft of Elections is to be expected and questioned.

Labour as expected, are more than happy to gnaw on any bone thrown to them, be it a distraction from a bigger issue or not. It's ideal for Starmer considering the weight being put on the measurement of his Leadership in the Hartlepool by-election, there's also the Croydon bankruptcy and Liverpool issues amongst others that Labour need to get past and convince local voters to stick with them. Local elections will be presented as a review of the Government's performance if Labour do well. Might be why Labour were using the NHS in their campaigning recently.

As for Cummings, what better way to remind Boris of what he's good at if he can influence voters yet again and get them to turn against the Tories when they're riding the vaccine success wave. Considering the guy was behind two of the biggest national vote successes in years, was literally hounded on his doorstep and made to face the national press to explain his (hypocritical) actions for doing something lots of people probably did during lockdown before being asked to leave, he's no doubt been waiting for his chance ever since. So yes, he probably is trying to bring Johnson down.

Should Boris stand down if he's found to be guilty? Absolutely. Starmer wasted his time at PMQs again, he seems to be preoccupied with eggs and baskets.
 

MickyD

Pasoti Donor
Dec 30, 2004
3,256
44
Brighton
Thanks, tmkf - that does indeed shed light.

I didn't see PMQs - I just can't stand watching them - but it's good to learn that Johnson is squirming and overcompensating. To paraphrase Shakeaperae more fully: The laddie doth protest too much, methinks.
 
Jul 15, 2006
3,892
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Kenton, Devon
Guiri Green":2pdix5se said:
Starmer wasted his time at PMQs again, he seems to be preoccupied with eggs and baskets.

I disagree. He made a point of asking who initially paid the invoice for the works to the flat, a question which Boris refused to answer. He then wound Boris up to the point where he ended up dragging Tony Blair into the argument before having a complete meltdown after Starmer's final allotted question. That was a real embarrassing performance from Boris.
 
May 16, 2016
3,874
216
Quinny":2zaexh8n said:
Guiri Green":2zaexh8n said:
Starmer wasted his time at PMQs again, he seems to be preoccupied with eggs and baskets.

I disagree. He made a point of asking who initially paid the invoice for the works to the flat, a question which Boris refused to answer. He then wound Boris up to the point where he ended up dragging Tony Blair into the argument before having a complete meltdown after Starmer's final allotted question. That was a real embarrassing performance from Boris.

Boris certainly got wound up as he normally does when cornered, but are we any the wiser over the payments?
 
Guiri Green":3gcjbl4s said:
MickyD":3gcjbl4s said:
I wonder if this is one of those things that seemed trivial compared to so much else but ends up being the one that snowballs and leads to a dramatic conclusion?

Electoral Commission to investigate PM flat funding

I don't follow the relationships between the rightwing rags and the PM, but I'm a little surprised that the Daily Mail seems so down on Bozo now. Can anyone shed any light?

There's definitely been some form of falling out. We could consider the PMs previous careers and the high probability of making a few enemies within it along the way. It does seem that there's a concerted effort to push a few dominoes over at the moment.

Considering when a lot of these recent revelations are said to have occurred, the timing of their release so close to a raft of Elections is to be expected and questioned.

Labour as expected, are more than happy to gnaw on any bone thrown to them, be it a distraction from a bigger issue or not. It's ideal for Starmer considering the weight being put on the measurement of his Leadership in the Hartlepool by-election, there's also the Croydon bankruptcy and Liverpool issues amongst others that Labour need to get past and convince local voters to stick with them. Local elections will be presented as a review of the Government's performance if Labour do well. Might be why Labour were using the NHS in their campaigning recently.

As for Cummings, what better way to remind Boris of what he's good at if he can influence voters yet again and get them to turn against the Tories when they're riding the vaccine success wave. Considering the guy was behind two of the biggest national vote successes in years, was literally hounded on his doorstep and made to face the national press to explain his (hypocritical) actions for doing something lots of people probably did during lockdown before being asked to leave, he's no doubt been waiting for his chance ever since. So yes, he probably is trying to bring Johnson down.

Should Boris stand down if he's found to be guilty? Absolutely. Starmer wasted his time at PMQs again, he seems to be preoccupied with eggs and baskets.

I think PMQs has become such a farce that Starmer has no choice other than his current tactic. I have watched PMQs assiduously since Johnson became PM, and I cannot recall him once answering a question. This leaves Starmer with no alternative but to frame questions which he believes will expose the government’s greatest weaknesses, and hope that with repetition they will ultimately resonate with voters, even without a response. In his shoes I can think of no other option.
 
Nov 15, 2011
1,896
300
Well firstly the timing is nothing to do with the elections. The revelations are all coming from tory sources and tory newspapers. Cummings put his head above the parapet because johnson phoned around tory newspaper editors telling them Cummings was leaking against him.

The characterisation of Starmer "gnawing on any bone" well you could put it that he was making the point he was revealing that Johnson has continually lied about a doner who he has put in the House of Lords and given £120 million in contracts in return for paying (initially at least) for the refurbishment and by not declaring this within 28 days hoping no-one would find out, he broke the law.

Most commentators I've seen - not labour supporters eg Dan Hodges who backed Johnson - think Johnson's red faced rant was that of a guilty man and Starmer maouevered him into losing it completely.
 
Jul 15, 2006
3,892
57
Kenton, Devon
Guiri Green":2fefa5yj said:
Quinny":2fefa5yj said:
Guiri Green":2fefa5yj said:
Starmer wasted his time at PMQs again, he seems to be preoccupied with eggs and baskets.

I disagree. He made a point of asking who initially paid the invoice for the works to the flat, a question which Boris refused to answer. He then wound Boris up to the point where he ended up dragging Tony Blair into the argument before having a complete meltdown after Starmer's final allotted question. That was a real embarrassing performance from Boris.

Boris certainly got wound up as he normally does when cornered, but are we any the wiser over the payments?

I think so - Starmer pushed for an answer from Boris as to whether the Conservative Party paid the initial bill, which Boris refused to answer. That refusal is tantamount to a "yes" (and, having a quick look at a few political pundits post-PMQ, that's the general consensus).
 
Apr 8, 2011
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Plymouth
I’m not a particularly big fan of Boris Johnson but over the last 6 months the Labour Party have had 32 MP’s, mayors & councillors arrested, suspended or placed under investigation, and yet all people want to talk about is Boris’ wallpaper?