December 13th – a year to the day since the result of last year’s election was confirmed. What a Friday, the 13th that turned out to be.
An 80-seat majority for Boris Johnson’s Conservatives and three years of democratic dysfunction was at last over and now we were going to “Get Brexit Done”.
We were also going to “Level Up”, invest in infrastructure and health, fix care, build more homes and do so much more that has since been lost to Covid.
I felt a real sense of relief – joy even and some expectation – that the political paralysis was at last over and normal life could resume.
It was also good to see the smug remainers and the loony lefties put back in their box for a while at least.
How wrong I was. How ironic that the one big issue of Brexit has been trumped by another one so much bigger. How this year has taught me to never assume anything.
It makes you wonder how Boris Johnson must feel having to handle all this. Can any premier have been dealt a worse hand plus since then he’s had some big personal issues – nearly dying of Covid and fathering a baby boy.
And despite the vaccine news there’s no sign of much changing for the better any time soon, tiers and their associated restrictions look set to ratchet up not down as there’s talk of infections on the rise and hospitals at full capacity.
Then, of course, Brexit has raised its ugly head again. I feel such a sense of weary outrage at the shenanigans of the trade deal talks as we head towards another cliff edge deadline.
Having rowed back from offering us the once proffered Canada-plus deal the EU seem intent on tying us to their whims and wishes for an eternity.
Their bullying tactics, which this week seem to have consisted of threats to stop flights, blockade ports and cut-off energy supplies, seem to know no limits.
Now is surely the time to walk away from the talks, call their bluff and prepare to go it alone. It’s high stakes stuff but surely their threats are idle.
I was reading, this morning, about how French fishermen are worried that a no-deal outcome would leave them scrapping for sprats – and other fish – with a Dutch armada apparently intent on overfishing.
To make that happen we would have to use the Royal Navy to protect our seas, fish and fishermen.
Thoughts of sabre rattling, skirmishes in the Channel could be just what we all need to keep our spirits up through the rest of this bleak mid-winter.
The odd torpedo wouldn’t go amiss either because as we all know these Europeans don’t like it up ‘em!