Absolute Eighties

A few blog posts ago I said that Brexit would not be the time machine back to a golden past that many Brexiters seemed to think it would be. No derring do, sun never going down on the empire stuff would happen. No land grabbing underpinned by slavery, theft and cornering the market in flags for you, Nigel, you naughty boy.

Although we do seem to have slid back to the Eighties while everyone was looking the other way, which is concerning.

For a start, Theresa May who now looms, positively looms as the favourite candidate for the Conservative party leader,  is startlingly reminiscent of Margaret Thatcher, even down to the fierce hair. It’s the Maggie reboot, 2016 style.

The terms fascist and crypto fascist are being bandied about rather a lot, too, but not in a Rik Mayall way, sadly. Although I must iron my dungarees, just in case of a resurgence of Rik.

Please let this happen. I miss Rik. A lot.

Lots of people are marching again. Banner making is going into overdrive. There are marches for Corbyn, against Brexit, for the NUT, against early closing on Wednesdays and for the return of the thruppeny bit.

On this note, I would like to say that one of the most unlikely pro Brexit stories I read was one where a butcher somewhere celebrated by selling all his meat in pounds and ounces. Presumably  it was laid out on that weird green plastic grass with the red and white plastic flowers separating various lumps of offal that were de rigeur in the butchers’ shops of my childhood.  According to the news report, the shop was  thronged with jubilant shoppers demanding four pounds of haslet, two ounces of chitterlings and a guinea’s worth of tripe for the servants, before pushing their unresisting children back up chimneys where they belong.

Back to my time warp.

Given that the junior doctors have binned off the new contract they were offered today, soon the streets will  once again pound to the rhythm of a thousand stethoscopes, and  delightful anti Jeremy Cockney Rhyming Slang Hunt, slogans.

Jeremy will be a bit annoyed at having to climb back under the bed he’s only just crawled out from under. Thank goodness he decided not to stand for Tory leader. It’s very hard to run a campaign from inside your mother’s wardrobe whilst whimpering about the nasty doctors going away and leaving you alone.

I worry that he will get vitamin D deficiency. If he does, he will undoubtedly die, because let’s face it, who the hell is going to want to treat him, given the way he’s treated doctors? He’s treading a perilous line with his health, frankly.

I wonder if he owns a sun lamp?

He’d better hope there’s no power cuts. I don’t think the candles in the veg basket are going to do anything much for Jeremy in his hour of need.

There are already strikes. My kids were off school today because of the NUT strike.

I’m just hoping we don’t get a resurgence of rioting.  I might start listening to The Clash again, just in case.

There is also a resurgence of the politicians of my youth. Both Michael Heseltine and Ken Clarke have popped up in the last few days to say their piece.

Worryingly, I find that both of them have spoken a lot of sense. If Norman Tebbit makes a statement I find myself agreeing with too, I may have to voluntarily commit myself to an asylum on the grounds that I have finally lost the plot. Either that or seriously start building myself that underground bunker, because the end of days really is nigh.



18 responses to “Absolute Eighties

  1. You just make me laugh out loud – a lot! And I am acutely aware that the real message is far from laughable however laugh we must to save ourselves from insanity – or is laughing insanity anyway. Hmmmm food for thought… x

  2. Hilarious Katy, just hilarious. Thank you
    I went on the banner waving March for Europe, on an anti capitalist Strike by the anarchists with banners, hugged immigrants on a rally for immigrants, they only had t shirts, on a We Want the Vote organised by 16yr olds with plenty of home made banners and today I was off with the teachers marching one more time down Regent Street, Whitehall and Parliament Square. Thousands and thousands of banners, placards, signs, and speakers. Phew. Need a break now but the Drs are doing their thing soo…. ( I take photos in case you thought I was a weird demo groupie – the best one of them all was London Pride, what a party that was). The same policeman was put in the front of the marches, recognised me and we had a wonderful chat all the way down Regent Street. Lovely bloke. Only so many photos of the same sign you can take really.
    Tomorrow is the release of the Chilcott report. Staying away from Parliament Square. Jo Cox’s memorial is getting sadder and sadder. Bloody Farage and his “independence won and not a shot fired” . Anyway I agree I feel like I am back at Uni and on a permanent protest. The people are angry.

  3. What is this obsession with the past all about? I’m not going to lie, I worked in advertising and publishing (a company owned by Michael Heseltine actually) in London in the 80s, and I had some extraordinarily good, albeit hedonistic, times. I was, however, not so lost to depravity that I was unaware of the hideous destruction dear old Maggie was wreaking on the nation, laying the foundations for the shitstorm we are now in. I have recently seen a comment hoping for the restoration of the ‘good old British corner shop’, presumably complete with Arkwright and his dodgy till, and a description of the NHS of the future that sounded like Dr Finlay’s Casebook, I kid you not. I have no idea exactly what period they want to go back to? Victorian hypocrisy and exploitation? Two world wars? The three day week? That only leaves the swinging sixties and I don’t think most of them are really into free love and mind expanding drugs. I would start building a bunker but I’m claustrophobic, so I’m thinking a remote island largely inhabited by sea birds may be the answer.

  4. Dear Katie

    It’s rapidly becoming clear that Brexit would cause devastating damage to our economy and undermine our prosperity for generations to come.

    It’s also now clear that the majority of Leavers would not get what they want from Brexit.

    So given these points and also given that we are not legally obliged to go through with it, why are we still proceeding?

    MPs have a duty of care to vote in the best interests of the people and the power to overturn this referendum result and we must unite to call on them to do this.

    When you are so clearly on the wrong path, the smartest thing to do is say ‘wrong way, go back’.

    We could wrangle on about whether the vote was democratic, whether the format and margins were robust, about the lies told by the Leave campaign, the protest voters, the racists, the Bregretters and so on, but surely all this is missing the point?

    We do not have to do this. The concerns of the Leave voters which have been revealed by this referendum can be addressed by social change – if we stay in the EU, we will have the money to make these changes.

    I am not political or a lover of the EU, I’m just a realist and I don’t believe the UK can cope with the level of disruption which would accompany Brexit.

    We have no plan, we don’t have enough trade negotiators to negotiate our exit and are thinking of borrowing them from New Zealand. We don’t have enough lawyers to redraft our laws, we don’t have enough time to secure a deal and – in spite of what the Leave campaign say – it’s not possible to jump-start trade with “China, India, Australia and Japan” to replace our EU trade in any kind of realistic timeframe.

    Anyone who thinks this has clearly never been in business – these things take years, so there would be gaping holes in our economy, with all the misery that would accompany that.

    If Leavers are faced with the clear choice of economic ruin or the EU, I anticipate the majority will be accepting of the change of plan.

    We must back out at the very first opportunity and move forward. We can then set to work to undo the damage which been caused to our nation, our wellbeing and our reputation and to resolve the issues which led so many to vote leave.

    We should not be too proud to do this.

    Katie, everything you can to do get this point across will help us to head off this disaster.


    Liz Terry

  5. Don’t forget that the exchange rate is back to its 1980s level too….
    Rewind Festival at Henley anyone??

  6. Hunt is probably in BUPA, so doesn’t give a ……. You can’t possibly have clutched a Thruppenny bit when you toddled off to buy your sweeties, you’re not old enough. I remember Heath and the three day week and power cuts without notice. One of the latter burned out mum’s kitchen because she forgot about the chip pan. Aye, them were the days. We were made-o-sterner stuff back then. Now if you’ll excuse me I’ll get back to me breakfast Prunes……..

  7. Katy I found this interesting. Have you seen it? I was in a “chat” with a Leaver on a Remain site t’other day. She had come on to call us all wankers so it was pleasant to calm her down and to have a dialogue. We ended up talking about Osbourne’s new plan to help the uber rich and companies by cutting taxes and making the disaffected suffer by cutting welfare even more. It was a interesting conversation until she said the fateful words ” Welfare State, makes my blood boil. Lazy people who wont’ get off there arses to work blah blah.” I just left the site. What more was there to say with someone who has embraced the Neo Liberal ideas of look out for number one and do not have any empathy for anyone else. Synchronicitically then I found this video, slowly pieces are dropping into place. The mess is awful and getting awfuller. Keep up the excellent blogs. Love reading them

    • I haven’t seen it. Will try to look at it later. The lack of empathy is astounding isn’t it? I even had to stop talking to a remain voter because he was basically only interested in one aspect of it that pertained to himself and didn’t care if the rest of us went to hell in a basket.

    • I hear a lot that “look out for number one” is neo liberal. I don’t understand why that is. I consider myself to be liberal and I don’t just look out for number one. I agree with welfare. Sometimes people need help. I’ve needed (and received) help. Society has a duty to help the members of that society that need help.

      It’s my understanding that liberal is left wing, and I don’t know any one on the left who would “look out for number one.” It seems more like a right wing Tory ideology.

      • I didn’t either. Until I studied a arts degree and I came across this term Neo Liberal. You have to believe I was quite confused. First the literature they set us to read did my head in and then when I thought I was getting a handle on all the jargon and bullshit along came this term Neo Liberalism. The clue is in the Neo. The term basically means that everyone has to look out for themselves. In this “new” society we are responsible for ourselves; our victories and our failures are because of what we have done with what life has dealt us. It says a lot that is was pushed by both Reagan and Thatcher in the “80’s. It has also led to victim blaming of people who just cannot come up from under what they were dealt with without a helping hand. Neo liberalism is like taking the term liberalism and turning it on its head. Me I am a liberal. I believe that society should be more equal. Neo liberalism sucks big time but it does give people an out to not have to empathise with people. The term was coined about the time that that sleezy character in the film Wall Street Gekko got up and did his “Greed Is Good” speech that has ruled the capitalist classes from then on. If you re read my comment above you will see I have no time for Neo Liberalism. Liberals rule though

  8. I totally agree with Liz Terry – WHY are we continuing with this madness????

    • Because I think it tallies with the Tory manifesto to break up the welfare state and everything it stands for, unfortunately, and it’s too good an opportunity for them to miss.

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