How exciting that the election campaign is already at a high level of intellectual debate.
For example, when Andrew Neil asked Conservative minister Nadhim Zahawi if he thought Jeremy Corbyn would “shoot the wealthy”, he said he couldn’t be sure.
We’ll have to see whether it’s in the Labour manifesto, though the policy has probably been watered down so the wealthy will only be shot in the arse so it just stings for a bit, which is the typical sell-out you expect from politicians.
It’s a shame Neil didn’t keep going, asking “do you think Jeremy Corbyn was Jack the Ripper? Do you think Jeremy Corbyn will apply for the vacancy at the head of Isis? Do you think Jeremy Corbyn was an eighth century Chinese warlord renowned for decapitating everyone in a village if he was grumpy because his boiled egg was too runny?”
And each time, Nadhim would inform us he couldn’t possibly know the answer.
Then Boris Johnson launched his campaign by insisting Jeremy Corbyn reminds him of the way Stalin behaved towards the kulaks. These were the landowning Russian peasants who, it’s usually assumed, were herded by Stalin into state-owned farms, and if they objected they were shot or starved, causing an estimated 10 million to perish.
But it turns out what actually happened was Stalin abolished the bedroom tax and promised to eliminate food banks. Maybe the kulaks misunderstood and thought he was abolishing food, and that’s what led to all the tension.
As an allotment owner, Corbyn is probably the closest any politician comes to being a kulak himself. So he must be planning to round himself up and confiscate his own courgettes, which just goes to show how stupid he is.
Ten years ago, Boris Johnson described Gordon Brown’s proposal for a top tax rate of 50p as “not far, in political motive, from Stalin’s attack on the kulaks.” This is a worry, as it suggests the prime minister thinks anyone he disagrees with is behaving like Stalin toward the kulaks.
At the time of Gordon Brown’s 50p tax rate, the Conservatives were adamant that spending on public services should be massively cut, as the cost of all those libraries and police was insanely high. Now they’re promising to boost public spending back to what it was before they cut it, because “Britain deserves better” than the levels of spending they’ve cut it to, and should return to the level it was when Boris Johnson said such spending was reckless and crazy and not far from Stalin’s attacks on the kulaks.
It’s this sort of thing that makes them so trusted with the economy.
But Johnson’s also outraged because Corbyn suggested no one in Britain should be a billionaire. This is typical of socialism, and as always, it’s not the rich that will lose out from this hateful jealous policy; no, it’s the common working-class billionaire who’ll suffer.
The hard-working billionaire, who runs a little sweet shop, or has saved up three pounds a week over a period of 333 million years only to have their savings swiped.
And if we don’t have billionaires, there’s no incentive to work hard. If the most you’ll ever be worth is only nine hundred and ninety-nine million pounds, why should you bother making an effort?
This was followed by a more humane announcement, in which Jacob Rees-Mogg explained the victims of the Grenfell fire would have escaped if they’d possessed his degree of common sense, and his colleague Andrew Bridgen backed him up, reminding us Rees-Mogg is “clever”.
This makes sense, because health and safety guidelines from the fire brigade tell us an Etonian education is the safest way to escape a fire, as flames die down quickly if you recite classic Greek literature at them.
Then party chairman James Cleverley told us it was fine to fabricate a piece of film, making it look as if Keir Starmer couldn’t answer a question that he answered straight away, because it was “light-hearted satire”.
How did we ever doubt it, when Cleverley is so well known for his jolly, sideways, quirky, light-hearted, satirical outlook? What fools we were to ever take James “I’m only having a laugh” Cleverley seriously.
But this could explain everything. It’s all been light-hearted satire. Suspending parliament unlawfully and declaring Muslim women look like letterboxes, dying in a ditch – all of them just sketches for a new online satire show on BBC3, and Rees-Mogg is a character brilliantly played by an actor previously known for doing the voice of Shaun the Sheep.
Then again, maybe there’s a different pattern at work. The Conservatives are now led by people who believe they are naturally superior and born to rule, so can’t hide their contempt. And now there’s no one to warn them to keep a lid on this, as the softer Tories have been purged, ruthlessly expelled and accused of all manner of absurd crimes – a purge that, in political motive at least, might remind you of certain other figures you sometimes find in history.