Some in the Tory party look at that charismatic gaffe-prone cuddly bear called Boris as a savior, new Messiah, a Thatcher reborn. Others warn that his big mouth means he ends up in too much of hot water too often. Still, there are some who see him as a policy lightweight. There were times when I too was enchanted by his charisma and thrilled with the image of him rebuking the Leader of the Opposition at the dispatch box. Not anymore. But for me neither his verbosity nor his only passing interests in anything resembling a policy presents a problem. On the contrary, I am very much worried about the kind of policies that are lurking behind that amiable teddy bear persona.
Yesterday, I learnt the Mayor supports the Takeaways Toolkit to fight obesity in London by boosting healthy eating and tackling takeaways. Proposals include something like managing “the proliferation of takeaways across the capital” and how to “use planning guidelines to restrict where and when takeaways set up, as well as how to use environmental and health regulations and laws around street trading”. Another quite helpful idea proposed is to reduce the number of holes in salt shakers …. I think you got the picture – so much for the concept of market capitalism in mayor’s head. But the crony kind, well, that’s a different thing. Here, Boris knows his friends. While a bit of small retailers’ regulation and red tape here and there is harmless: “We cannot solve the banking crisis by imposing more regulation than our competitors abroad.” Hear! Hear! And I just wonder how far away his dream of the Estuary Airport is from North Korean capital Pyongyang’s Ryugyong hotel and other communist architectural fables. Perhaps, in the future we can also introduce a law to ban coffee shops and reduce our red meat intake – due to carbon footprint as well as health. And I still haven’t mention Boris happy jump on global warming scaremongers’ band wagon. And his big friend the former REPUBLICAN governor Arnold Schwarzenegger – not decided whether to support Romney or Obama.
Yes, Boris reminds me of another mayor of a big metropolis, the businessman turned soda-banning social engineer Michael Bloomberg. In this context Johnson’s Olympic rebuke to Mitt Romney this summer doesn’t surprise me that much anymore. I read somebody joking that Boris’ premiership will be just a way station of his career to be crowned by the US presidential post. Fortunately, Boris renounced his citizenship in 2006. But I am sure about one thing: if he decided to run he would definitely seeks the presidential nomination from his fellow members of the Democratic Party. Boris for PM?! No, thank you.