Thursday, 13 June 2019

Boris Johnson's leadership pitch is a pack of lies

It's no wonder Boris Johnson skipped over his shameful and shambolic tenure as Foreign Secretary in order to gloss up his record as London Mayor to pitch for the job of Tory Prime-Minister-by-default.

People are far more likely to have forgotten his tenure as London Mayor than recent stuff like the Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe farce, "fuck business", gratuitous Nazi comparisons, endless gaffes and insults, and quitting his job to oppose Theresa May's Brexit deal only to decide to actually vote in favour of it the 3rd time she put it before parliament!

Also people outside of London are less likely to know how lazy and incompetent he was because they didn't have to deal with it on a day-to-day basis.

So Johnson and his backers have decided to create a revisionist history of his glorious time as London Mayor that would have made Stalin proud.


Johnson's boast that he cut crime in London is staggeringly dishonest. Crime was falling when he came to power, but then he administered the process of annihilating London policing once his Tory mates and their vile Lib-Dem enablers took over government in 2010.

Tory austerity resulted in a 30% reduction in police numbers, and a 65% reduction in Community Support Officers (a reduction from 18,937 police and CSOs to 11,576 in just 8 years).

£600 million was slashed from the London police budget and 120 police buildings were shut down and sold off to property developers.

By the end of Boris Johnson's tenure the consequences of this agenda were becoming clear, knife crime rose in his last two years in office, and violent crime has continued to soar ever since (with ever-cynical Tories attempting to blame this violent crime epidemic on Johnson's successor Sadiq Khan!).


One of the biggest cons the Tories pulled when they got into power was their use of the austerity narrative to justify reducing infrastructure spending in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales, and the north of England whilst actually increasing infrastructure spending in London and the wealthy south east.

With London getting £24 per person spent on transport for every £1 per person in the north east of England, it's no wonder Johnson resorts to infrastructure boasting. When the game was so ridiculously rigged in his favour he'd be a fool not to.

However a look at some of the waste that went on under his watch tells us that London could probably have benefited an awful lot more from this vast spending disparity with someone competent in charge of delivering infrastructure projects.

£53 million wasted on the Garden Bridge project that never went ahead, a £40 million overspend on Routemaster busses, £24 million on the cable car to nowhere (a truly extraordinary sight for us northerners who have suffered one cancelled infrastructure project after another), £5.2 million on an Estuary Airport that never got built, renting West Ham the Olympic stadium for just £2.5 million a year when it cost £323 million to build and then convert, and another £300,000 spraffed up a wall on unusable water cannons that were eventually flogged off as scrap.

Living Wage

Every time the Tories boast about their "living wage" decent people should be absolutely furious at the Orwellian chicanery.

The National Minimum Wage was invented by Labour and vehemently opposed by the Tories at the time.

In 2016 David Cameron decided to rebrand the Minimum Wage as "living wage" principally to undermine the work of the Living Wage Foundation who promote the idea that the minimum wage should provide enough for people to live on.

Their calculation for London is £10.55 per hour. The Tory fake "living wage" in London is £8.21.

So when Boris Johnson brags about this fake Tory "living wage", he's actually bragging about employers underpaying London workers by £2.34 per hour.


The Tory track record on housing is absolutely atrocious. Between 2010 and 2017 they oversaw the lowest level of peacetime house building since the 1920s. They also deliberately pumped up the unsustainable house price bubble again by restricting supply and inflating prices with ludicrous schemes like Help to Buy. They slashed the already shockingly low levels of social home construction, And to top it all off they decided to redefine "affordable housing" as a £450,000 starter home in Greater London.

Boris Johnson contributed to this atrocious track record by missing his targets on affordable housing, and virtually eradicating new council housing in London.


Of all of the issues that Boris Johnson should be keeping quiet about, London air pollution is up there with the fact that Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe is still in an Iranian jail after his decision to lazily repeat Iranian accusations against her as facts in parliament.

In 2013 the consultancy firm Aether handed in a report on London air pollution to Boris Johnson's administration, but instead of publishing it, they buried it for two and a half years until it was found by Sadiq Khan's team when he took over.

The report detailed shocking disparities in toxic nitrous oxide pollutants between poor and wealthy areas.

Instead of doing anything about it Johnson and his cronies just buried the report, and now he's got the absolute gall to brag about what a wonderful job he did of combating air pollution!

Alternative facts

Despite the fact Johnson's Tweet is incredibly deceptive, it's still generated hundreds of shares and thousands of likes, demonstrating his Trump-like relationship with his supporters.

It doesn't actually matter what he does, or how many lies he tells, the people who adore Johnson aren't actually interested in any of that stuff.

If reality gets in the way of their Boris-fandom, then it's quite clearly reality that has to make way, and unfortunately it's a tiny band of around 70,000 Tory tribalists, Brextremist infiltrators, and BoJo-worshippers who get to pick the next Tory Prime-Minister-by-default, while the other 70 million of us have to deal with the consequences.

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Tony Lancaster said...

Boris would never 'spraff' - he's more of a 'spaffer', a complete and utter one too.

PaddyT said...

Looks like old Boris has it in the bag. Corbyn was in Dublin 3 weeks ago and still insisted at talks with the Irish PM that he would try to reopen talks with the EU, another deluded politician it now appears.

Unknown said...

"The report detailed shocking disparities in toxic nitrous oxide pollutants between poor and wealthy areas."

Not nitrous oxide, that's laughing gas. Nitrogen dioxide is the pollutant you mean.

Desmond Felix said...

Boris Johnson is actually the lowest form of life and I actually question the motivations of anyone who would vote for him knowing what it would actually mean for a democratic country

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Anonymous said...

The thing I will always remember from his time as London Mayor is the fact that he followed up the closure of TEN fire stations in the capital (an expanding city) with the purchase of illegal-to-use watercannons. This is like rubbing salt in the wound, like some kind of ironic p*ss take.

It's the one thing that has DIRECTLY led to deaths. I don't know if it had any impact on Grenfell, I suspect not, but it certainly has caused deaths elsewhere as people desperately waited an extra ten minutes for help to arrive...