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Of more than local interest

I imagine that for many Samizdata readers, the daily diet of gossip and snark and tittle tattle that dominates the output of Guido Fawkes is not to their taste, even if they do entirely see the point of it, and are glad that it happens.

But every so often, Guido does a posting that is of much more than local appeal, which would connect to a far wider audience, provided only that they are alerted to its existence.

So, allow me to alert you to this posting, which features the maiden speech of Kemi Badenoch, Conservative MP for Saffron Walden. Guido describes this maiden speech as his favourite of the 2017 intake by far.

I especially liked the Woody Allen reference. But basically, I liked it all. Her website is here.

If more British Conservative Party people were capable of talking or even thinking like this, I’d seriously consider joining them.

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30 comments to Of more than local interest

  • Brilliant! Theresa May is not fit to wipe this woman’s shoes!

  • Natalie Solent (Essex)

    She’s my MP.

  • Hang on, hang on… Did she really just say “the state… must provide a means for people to lift themselves out of poverty”?
    “before wealth can be redistributed… It must first be created”?
    The rest seems pretty good though.

  • “the state… must provide a means for people to lift themselves out of poverty”

    Yes, by rolling back regulation and interference. I think that might actually be what she means.

  • Rob Fisher

    “lift themselves” yes.

    “the state… must provide”… Might not be how I would put it, but any attempt to take away the semantic automatic-moral-high-ground from the left is worth a try.

  • Laird

    I too liked the Woody Allen reference. Must try to remember to use it sometime!

  • dmurray

    Your next Prime Minister if you have brains in your skulls.

    As an American who cheered Brexit and voted for Trump.

    Congratulations, Natalie!

  • A black woman MP who chose Conservative? My word, she’ll be utterly loathed by the left then, won’t she?

  • Paul Marks

    Good.

  • Mary Contrary

    A black woman MP who chose Conservative?

    Much more than that. A black woman MP who chose Conservative out of a series of well-thought through philosophical and policy positions, and one who is willing to articulate those positions and announce their superiority not just in the UK but as an example to more benighted parts of the world.

    Just when you think all hope is lost.

  • Jacob

    Great speech. Where was the audience ? The chamber was empty. Symbolic of British state of affairs.

  • Mrs. Davis

    Something tells me that’s not the last time I’ll be seeing Kemi.

  • Alisa

    Symbolic of British state of affairs.

    Dunno about symbolic, but typical of all parliaments everywhere, most of the time.

  • Mr Ed

    That’s her stuck on the back benches until May moves (is moved) off the stage.

    Couldn’t help notice that her surname could be stretched to ‘Bad Enoch’.

  • CaptDMO

    Do UK pols tend to write their own material?
    Is it written for them by lobbyist and other “consultants”
    provided for them to champion their cause, as is often the case in the U.S.?

  • Hexhamgeezer

    And an all-too-brief shot at the end of Abbott in the background with a face like an open sewer. Lovely.

  • Mr Ed

    CaptDMO

    Generally senior politicians (Minister-level) seem to have their own speechwriters, who AAUI are young political hacks who are starting on a political career fresh from a politics degree etc. I doubt that any ‘Young Turk’ in the Conservative Party could (not ‘would’) have written this speech. I would bet a meal it was her own work.

    HG

    a face like an open sewer. Lovely.

    Isn’t that her poker face?

  • Julie near Chicago

    Well, I thought the speech was excellent. And inspiring. Thanks, Natalie.

  • Mr Ed (July 22, 2017 at 2:19 pm): “That’s her stuck on the back benches until May moves (is moved) off the stage.”

    So not that long, then. Both Kemi’s election and the certainty that May will cease to be PM before the next (well before, I expect as well as hope) come from last month’s election – so it was not all bad.

    Couldn’t help notice that her surname could be stretched to ‘Bad Enoch’.

    🙂

  • CaptDMO (July 22, 2017 at 5:44 pm), Kemi comes from the Spectator and Brexit stable IIUC, so she should be well able to have written that speech herself and I’d be astonished if not. Of course, she may have discussed it with her Spectator chums and listened to any advice they gave her on it. Maiden speeches have a reputation for being nerve-wracking. Even Burke’s description of his suggests it was a trial. (We don’t know what he said though we do know it was almost certainly about the stamp act and whatever he said stung the prime minister, Grenville, into responding to him – unusual in a maiden speech from a newly-arrived member.)

  • Cal Ford

    >I imagine that for many Samizdata readers, the daily diet of gossip and snark and tittle tattle that dominates the output of Guido Fawkes is not to their taste, even if they do entirely see the point of it, and are glad that it happens.

    Guido seems a bit threatened by the rise of the alt-right. And no wonder. He’s no longer the gadfly, he’s now just another bit of the Westminster furniture, achieving little, other than establishing his own comfortable position. I was reminded of him when I read this by Kurt Schlichter the other day about Bill Kristol and John Podhoretz:

    “Their purpose was never to put conservative policy into place. No, they are donor bait whose purpose is to allow their proprietors to maintain their mediocre positions in the DC/NY milieu.”

    https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/07/20/we-must-elect-senator-kid-rock-n2356950

    This is a bit strong to apply to Guido, especially as he’s been good in keeping up the pressure on Brexit, but it’s starting to look like he’s gradually being assimilated into the establishment, and isn’t going to change much, despite the big claims he’s made over the years. Whatever changes he’s helped bring about — muddying the names of politians a bit more, for example — were achieved long ago.

  • Cal Ford

    It’s a fine speech, and seeing as the great majority of Conservatives MPs are unable to even talk like this, it should be applauded. But how many decades have we had of Conservative MPs who talk the talk but can’t walk the walk?

    And The Spectator bunch? Fraser Nelson, and Matthew D’Ancona, etc, generally a lame gaggle of losers (ala Kristol and Podhoretz). And Boris Johnson, another who can make a fine speech, but has no intention of ever acting on what he says.

  • Cal Ford (July 22, 2017 at 10:35 pm): “Boris Johnson, another who can make a fine speech, but has no intention of ever acting on what he says.”

    A bit too harsh, Cal.

    – Boris decided to campaign for Brexit. If he had not, would we have it? (And if there had been no Brexit, would Trump have failed to get over the line in November?)

    – It is no great praise to say Boris would have been a better prime minister than May but do even his worst detractors on this blog say the opposite?

    Likewise I think your Guido comment a bit harsh. As for Kemi, we’ve heard what she said, we’ll see how she votes and what she does.

  • Cal Ford

    Boris was Mayor of London for eight years. In those eight years, what did he achieve, other than cancelling a few of Livingstone’s excesses? If Boris became PM do you really think much would change? It would be the same old spineless RINO party.

    Anyone who has spent time with Boris knows that what he says is one thing, what he does is another. Boris mainly cares about Boris.

    >As for Kemi, we’ve heard what she said, we’ll see how she votes and what she does.

    Sure, but the Conservatives are in such a state that we’re now getting excited when one of them merely manages to say what should be basic Conservative philosophy. So forgive me for yawning.

  • Watchman

    Cal Ford,

    I hadn’t noticed much of an Alt-Right in the UK, certainly not enough to threaten Guido Fawkes (who is not dependent on a particularly right-wing readership, even if his commentariat generally is). The business model is at least as dependent on being read by MPs as having a particular demographic (hence the very strange sponsored pieces they hosts – they are aimed at MPs).

    You may be right the sute is becoming establishment, but arguably it always was – it is not about overthrowing the system so much as reporting and gossiping about it. So I suspect your terms of reference for what Paul Staines was intending are a bit off-target – he worked to become a political insider and built a brand on doing so, rather than working to cause change.

    And incidentally, what is “basic Conservative philosophy” – it’s a private party, so it can determine its own policy. The name does not imply a connection to what is labelled conservative philosophy (especially in the US).

  • Cal Ford

    >I hadn’t noticed much of an Alt-Right in the UK, certainly not enough to threaten Guido Fawkes (who is not dependent on a particularly right-wing readership, even if his commentariat generally is).

    Try looking on Twitter.

    > I suspect your terms of reference for what Paul Staines was intending are a bit off-target – he worked to become a political insider and built a brand on doing so, rather than working to cause change.

    He built up an image over the years of a courageous, independent site that was going to change things for the better, which would overthrow cosy Westminster cliques. He definitely did *not* start off as a political ‘insider’.

    >And incidentally, what is “basic Conservative philosophy” – it’s a private party, so it can determine its own policy. The name does not imply a connection to what is labelled conservative philosophy

    ???

  • EdMJ

    So if Jacob Rees-Mogg is the Anti-Corbyn, have we found in Kemi Badenoch the Anti-Abbot?

    Now there’s a Question Time line-up I’d love to watch.

  • EdMJ

    Another speech from her on Brexit from the Guido comments: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6a6NScsUQR0

  • Laird

    That is an impressive woman.

  • Alex11

    Wow, a new Tory MP who believes in Brexit, economic freedom, wealth creation and free speech; the party leadership slipped up there.