Hysteria, humbug and Lady Hale

The spiked team discuss another extraordinary week in British politics.

Did the Supreme Court ruling cross a line? Is it now not okay to use the word ‘surrender’? Will we ever have a General Election? Brendan O’Neill, Luke Gittos, Ella Whelan and Tom Slater discuss all this and more, on this week’s spiked podcast.

Picture by: Getty.

To enquire about republishing spiked’s content, a right to reply or to request a correction, please contact the managing editor, Viv Regan.


Christopher Tyson

29th September 2019 at 4:15 pm

Posted inadvertently, meant to go under BON show, but okay here.

Christopher Tyson

29th September 2019 at 9:56 am

Apologies for posting before I’ve had time to listen to the show, but I just wanted to comment on this ongoing furore about language. Here are some terms that I find annoying, not annoying enough for me to call for them to be banned, but enough to shrug and think ‘okay game on’.
People’s vote, patriarchy, climate change denier, BAME, unconscious bias, LGBT, cisgender. This is political language, smuggling in ideological assumptions as though they are common sense and un-contestable . Sometimes this is naively or sincerely done, sometimes it is deliberately done, someone like Alistair Campbell has deliberately used the term ‘people’s vote’ as a provocation, as though the people who do not agree with him are not genuine or legitimate people. As we descend into the school playground we may remember the term ‘you can dish it out but you can’t take it’. When I’ve argued with far right racists, they are invariably indignant at any suggestion that they are ‘far right’ or ‘racist’, they regard (or pretend to) these term are smears. For them some races are subordinate and unwelcome therefore insulting them is proper and appropriate, even a social obligation. Similarly some Remainers regard Brexiteers as a lower life form not entitled to respect or courtesy, a refusal to accept that Brexit position as legitimate. The terms I’ve listed above ( we can all make our own list) are never interrogated by the liberal media and certainly never interrogated in parliament. There have as yet been no calls for the Liberals to apologise for their manifesto entitled ‘Bollocks to Brexit’.

Hugh Oxford

28th September 2019 at 6:13 pm

A Brexit deal delivered by this parliament will not work.

A sincere Brexit must be delivered and – most importantly – must be seen to be delivered. In order to be seen to be delivered, it must be delivered by somebody who is seen to sincerely believe in it.

The political crisis we face is a crisis of trust, a crisis brought on by MPs who say one thing and do another. MPs elected on the manifesto commitment to deliver Brexit, but who have either jumped ship without the courtesy of a by-election, or who have been seen to be frustrating the process. MPs who won’t even call a vote of no confidence and a general election.

It is delusional to imagine that anything other than an honest Brexit will resolve our political crisis. If we have another referendum, and it swings the other way, that will not resolve it. The first referendum will still stand in the minds of millions: including remainers. If Article 50 is cancelled, God help us. The cat is out of the bag, now.

May could not have delivered Brexit, not even an honest Brexit. Because the perception would have been there: the perception of a stitch up, a compromise, a sell out, a conspiracy.

With every passing month, Brexit risks becoming a new Peterloo. A Brexit that passes easily through a rogue remain legislature, squatting in parliament without a mandate, will always be tainted with a remain conspiracy. It won’t be seen to be Brexit.

The only Brexit that will be seen to be Brexit is one voted for (if at all) by a new parliament, under a Brexit leader.

And then the matter will begin to draw to a close. Otherwise this will go down through the generations: a weltering, boiling, festering, boil, morphing from a simply request to leave the EU into something much more profound and significant. And ugly.

Michael Lynch

29th September 2019 at 1:14 pm

Great post with very pertinent conclusion. If there has been one consistent problem for Brussels during Britain’s membership it’s Tory Euroscepticism. Also, to some degree found on the Labour benches; that is until Thatcher and the destruction of the Unions (they found salvation and support in Europe thereafter). European leaders must now ask the question whether they think Britain’s membership is worth it in the long run. De Gaulle was on the money when he vetoed Britain joining; he knew they’d prove to be a headache.

Manno Malik

28th September 2019 at 10:55 am


Abraham O’Nana

28th September 2019 at 10:40 am

It’s easy to feel a sense of hopelessness in light of what’s recently happened if we look only on the surface from the information we’re fed and so it appears that Boris is caged by Parliament with the help of the deeply entrenched pro Remain media, judiciary,and hidden wealthy benefactor,not to mention the sudden reappearance of politicians we’d hoped we’d never hear from again,due to their huge disservice to our country.It also appears likely that they may tame the tiger that is the Boris Brexit machine
But dig a little deeper while blocking out all the useless noise we’re confronted with and you see things are actually proceeding much better than we thought
Yes the SC ruling is a blow to democracy,but will have little impact on the destination.Looking at the lengths Remain are willing to go and how low they’re willing to stoop,displays to all just how extreme their ideology is and how it allows them to feel they are a law into themselves,happy to totally disregard the will of the people.
For all their attempts to thwart Brexit,each step they take to do so,merely plays into the hands of Boris/Cummings,AKA The Dynamic Duo.They are playing the long game The only way to rescue this country is with a GE and a good working majority in Government.
The Dynamic Duo have controlled the narrative well,despite how it may appear.They knew Prorogation would be challenged/ appealed and taken to the SC,they knew the SC would likely rule against them ( did you watch how the Govt lawyers presented quite a weak case?These are world class lawyers,does anyone believe they couldn’t have delivered a more robust argument?)They knew Remain would pass a bill to force an extension request….all of these events create a narrative and a powerful set of ideas in people’s minds,like a viral meme that spreads,which is this: Parliament is currently AGAINST the people and against Boris’ Govt,the SC/Judiciary are now against the people and Boris’ Govt,YOU the people are having your democratic will supressed and this is only going to get worse,Boris is aligned with you,the people,hence the only way out of being increasly shackled and your collective voice ignored by Parliament is by voting for Boris,the underdog and hero of the people,in order to remove those that have betrayed your vote from power….

All of what’s happened will either be used in some way,or simply add her fuel to the fire in the next GE,this week s the end game for Boris and Cummings and the last true hope for Great There will be a GE,which is why the Remain camp have become increasingly hysterical and more deceptive than ever They know their time is short.
Personally,I don’t believe Boris will get any deal from the EU that’s in anyway acceptable to his own party,let alone the opposition and he knows that.You only need watch Cummings Vs The Select Committee to understand hes convinced we’re much better off leaving EU in as complete a fashion as possible.
No deal is the likely outcome on Oct 31st.Last time I looked EU law will still trump anything in The Benn Bill.

Janet Bailey

28th September 2019 at 9:53 am

Yes, they are trying to wear us down , but it only makes me more determined ! I implore people please vote at the election when it comes and give Boris the huge majority he deserves!

A Game

28th September 2019 at 9:11 am

John Major is doing his bit to undermine the objectivity of the Supreme Court.

Read an article where he’s quoted as saying Boris is just paying lip service to the ruling and will try and circumvent the law designed to PREVENT A NO DEAL BREXIT. (No, it was to return sovereignty to parliament against the fascism of the government, wasn’t it? Nothing to do with Brexit. Positively senile.
He was also quoted as saying that BoJo might use an Executive Order to bypass the Benn Surrender Bill, which would be “utterly disrespectful of the Supreme Court”. Why? What part of the ruling tackled anything but prorogation? What part of that case tackled anything to do with the Surrender Bill? It had nothing to do with Brexit, John. It was prorogation. Jeez.
Totally senile.
And, because he can’t take his saggy old ass home and is addicted to his own grandiosity, he’s letting the cats out of the bag.
G Miller might have to do something about the silly old coot. If you know what I mean.

A Game

28th September 2019 at 9:28 am

One of the links Jane 70 provided to an article had the writer arguing that the Sup Court doesn’t understand the THREE branches of government. The two houses and the Queen. I’ll get the quote:

The Court conveniently ignores what is learnt by rote by every first-year law student: that Parliament consists of the House of Commons and the House of Lords and the Queen. The two Houses alone do not constitute Parliament in the legal sense: the Queen is a constituent part of Parliament too. She is not remotely an outsider. Parliament consists of all three institutions. Proceedings between them, of which prorogations are undoubtedly one, are no business of the courts.

He continues, and this is a humdinger of their… ignorance, or determination to attain a desired political result:
The Court quashed the prorogation and called on the Speaker and Lord Speaker immediately to enable each House to meet as soon as possible “to decide upon a way forward”. With these words the Court lets the cat out of the bag. In normal times the two Houses never “decide a way forward”. Our system is parliamentary government not government-by-Parliament. It is governments which determine ways forward and Parliaments which keep those governments accountable. The Court’s strange phraseology makes perfect sense however in the context of Brexit whereby it is for backbench MPs and peers “to decide a way forward” in terms of preventing the country from leaving the European Union at all costs.

And Johnny not very Major has just proven, it was all about stopping Brexit.

Abraham O’Nana

28th September 2019 at 10:00 am

It seems the overwhelming perception of the SC ruling is that the judges were in no way ignorant of what is the trifecta that makes up our Government,but in fact made a political decision wrapped up as a legal one.They could have at least attempted to have been less overt in their motives by not returning a uninaimous decision,which,however you spin it,looks like a stitch up.

A Game

28th September 2019 at 10:26 am

Their freshly crafted status as the highest power in the land was agreed upon when?
That’s the true travesty. If this was published, agreed upon, implemented. Fine. But was it disclosed that they would be the ultimate power in the land?

Corruption is corruption, not matter what sex its wrapped in.

I have a theory about Jezza. Would he have it in him to be self sacrificing enough to insist on staying as Leader, because lacking any appeal, they won’t win an election and thus, Brexit can get over the line. Which suits the life long Eurosceptic. Nahhhhh,.

3rd day of Labour Conference. That’s what happens when you leave your indoctrinated, brainless 20 year olds in charge.

We’re all in love with Coxy. They thought they were turning up to a cake walk. “You broke the law! You are criminals! Righteousness is on our side!” Coxy gave them the hand… then a very big boot.
Probably what contributed to the frenzy Boris “No Surrender” Johnson walked into.
How funny was Bercow’s waffle when BJ left? Splutter splutter…

The see-sawing of you Spiked journos hopes and fears is to be seen. The tone of your articles reflects the dark days, as opposed to the happy ones, like today.
Seeing the hideous remainer vacuum you have had to live in for nearly 4 years… its a perfectly fair place to be, especially when the media do the remainer bidding and report their narrative, dutifully, and how loud their gloating triumph always is.
Brexit does seem to hinge on a few very sharp points. But BJ and Cummings seem to be playing for keeps. As long as the rest of the Tories keep their sh*t together. (Labour has BIG problems, but the Tories need to have a good look at their line up down the ranks. The careerists have to be weeded out of politics. They are good for nothing when the going gets tough. I mean, who ever, ever, voted for Rory Stewart? Who allowed him to even become the candidate?)
There’s a funny character on youtube… Geoff Taylor, I think… he made a profoundly good point. Its time people looked past the rosette pinned on the chest and looked at the actual person asking to be elected. Make sure your party is putting forward quality candidates.

Fun podcast.

Tom Burns

28th September 2019 at 9:07 am

Why has no one mentioned the Queen in all this judicial bull sh*t?

The PM advised her Majesty and she made the decision did she do this without her own legal experts opinion. The judiciary have actually ruled against their boss who cannot be brought before her own courts! The decision was an affront to the Sovereign!

It’s time the Queen got involved and stated her wishes to her subjects (judiciary, politicians, rich business women/men, clergy and the voters) then as loyal subjects we all abide! End of division. If you don’t agree then piss off somewhere else.

Dominic Straiton

27th September 2019 at 6:59 pm

“America’s fundamental law has the cold, orderly beauty of a classical temple.England’s has the warmer loveliness of an ancient forest. It seems to be wholly natural but, when examined closely, it shows many signs of careful cultivation and pruning”.

Dominic Straiton

27th September 2019 at 7:00 pm

Blairs Kangaroo court has to go

Jim Lawrie

27th September 2019 at 5:56 pm

I’d give a lot to hear Geoffrey Cox’s private utterings on the Supreme Court.

Jim Lawrie

27th September 2019 at 5:40 pm

Emma makes a good point about the focus of the next General Election. The behaviour of MP’s and Parties will be under scrutiny.

I agree with Brendan’s reasons for pessimism, but at the same time the longer they continue this, the less will they want a vote of any kind.
Regardless of the result of a skewered Referendum, we can have another. LibDem want to revoke article 50 so that in that event we would have to start the whole process again, with the hope of fatiguing the electorate.

Jim Lawrie

27th September 2019 at 5:27 pm

Can Bendan and Emma not just praise Geoffrey Cox for his role this week rather than qualify it with a politically correct – I don’t actually like him, but … – ?

A Game

28th September 2019 at 10:33 am

Just a quick point: Its Ella, not Emma.

I only heard Brendan say he hadn’t been such a fan because Coxy supported May’s Surrender Treaty. That’s not a bad point. If that thing had gotten through parliament, eek. But he’s now earnt respect and admiration, the traditional way. (And two can play at that game, creating the sound byte for the news… gobble gobble.)

Jim Lawrie

28th September 2019 at 11:09 pm

Pardon me. My knowledge of the Italian alphabet and pronouns is a bit disjointed.

It is not necessary for either of them to disclaim being a Tory.

Thomas Swift

27th September 2019 at 4:52 pm

No, we’re not going to be allowed an election.

Our move.

A Game

28th September 2019 at 10:36 am

The SNP and Lib Dems are sweating on an election. They REALLY want one sooner rather than later. They may end up voting with the government to get one. I don’t think Vicky Pollard’s posh cousin is too sentimental about her newest MPs. All she can see is those Labour seats that will be hers, those Tory Remain seats that will be hers! And the remainer tactics… you’d want to get an election before you became tainted by association. Which is what will happen.

A Game

28th September 2019 at 10:41 am

Oh, and I have to acknowledge that my love affair of noting the familial resemblance between Swinson and the Pollards isn’t original. (Always a risk, but hey.) I’ve had a chance to see the Gove in action. It appears he has long identified the familial resemblance, but of the entire Lib Dems to the Pollards. I’m with ya, Govey. (And he’s a performer. Love a performer, even if I disagree with their politics, which presently I do not.)

Leave a comment

You must be logged in to comment. Log in or Register now.