Readers' letters: I'd rather have Frank Drebin than Boris Johnson as PM

In a scene from one of The Naked Gun films, a criminal being pursued by Detective Frank Drebin crashes into a firework store causing the building to explode into a raging inferno and the sky is illuminated by rockets and cascading colours. As a crowd gathers, Drebin moves to the front and tells it: “Please move on, there’s nothing to see here.”

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 28th June 2022, 7:00 am
Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie at the G7 summit in Germany
Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie at the G7 summit in Germany

I am constantly reminded of this scene whenever a member of Boris Johnson’s over-promoted sycophantic cabinet attempts, yet again, to defend the indefensible after another Tory scandal, outrage or disaster.

The government’s latest disaster is the loss of one of the safest Tory seats in the country in Tiverton and Homerton. Attorney General Suella Braverman bemoaned the unsportsmanlike behaviour of many thousands of constituents who voted tactically to keep the Tories out. It just wasn’t cricket. Conveniently forgetting a great many of those votes being from people who would normally vote Conservative.

And now Johnson takes delusion to new stratospheric heights by not only claiming he has never lied in his political career but that he expects to be Prime Minister for three terms of office.

As the most corrupt, mendacious and incompetent government of modern times and being responsible for scandal after scandal, we are still being told by Johnson’s fanatical devotees to “Move on. Nothing to see here”.

In terms of leadership skills, political awareness and judgement, I’ll trust Frank Drebin over Boris Johnson any day.

D Mitchell, Edinburgh

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Carrie will cling on

Apparently there is a woman behind every great man. Whether Boris Johnson is great or not he commands the influence and patronage of the office of Prime Minister and Carrie has her husband’s ear. She may not have managed to get a top job but still commands the limelight, making quite an entrance in a reported £2,500 combo at the G7 summit. Boris no doubt sees her as softening his image.

At the G7 Boris declared that “you have to have really really honest discussions to understand what’s going on”. While he was referring to Ukraine this could equally refer to Conservative MPs trying to establish how they position the party to avoid losing the next election.

Carrie Johnson has other ideas. She is reported to have regularly intervened in the hiring and firing of No.10 staff. Comparing the No.10 flat to a John Lewis furniture nightmare led to accusations of snobbery. Now that she has the infamous luxury wallpaper installed she will want to stay there as long as she can.

While recent spouses like Philip May preferred to keep a low profile, Carrie Johnson is determined to be seen and heard. Some suggest she vies with Nicola Sturgeon and the Queen as the UK’s most influential woman. What isn’t in doubt is her commitment to keeping Boris in power and she is a barrier to those opposing him.

Neil Anderson, Edinburgh

A viable alternative

However much we think national self determination should be inevitable it will only happen when we mobilise the active support for an alternative independent Scotland. It is not good enough to make some easy contrast to Boris Johnson’s policies.

We need an active statement of support for public sector workers who are struggling to restore their wages to pre-pandemic levels. Westminster may set the rules but imposing an insignificant alternative here is not going to inspire the mobilisation needed for an active social, environmental and economically different Scotland.

Norman Lockhart, Innerleithen

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