A British-American bluestocking living in the UK writes about politics, pop culture, and emerging new paradigms as they unfold on both sides of the Atlantic. (New content.)

Thursday, 8 October 2009

And then...there is....Boris.........


Johnson....Boris Johnson. The most eccentric, outspoken Mayor  London has ever known...or perhaps experienced is more like it. Johnson is a full blown experience. No one thought he would win the mayoral post, but he did and he did it (as Sinatra would sing) his way. He is incredibly witty and always says what's on his mind. He tore up the Conservative Party this week with his comments where he declared that Cameron should push for a referendum regardless of the results of the E.U. votes in other countries "especially if we are faced with the prospect of Tony Blair suddenly pupating into an intergalactic spokesman for Europe."  The crowd  went wild with laughter.

But Johnson is not stopping at being the Lord Mayor. Just how ambitious is Johnson? Well, the rumour is that he also would like to be Prime Minister one day. On this go-round? That's not for certain. While Cameron is always dressed to the nines, Johnson looks like he just rolled out of bed and picked his clothes for the day in the dark. Ironically, it is Johnson with his messy hair and tie in a twist all the time that comes from a patrician background. Cameron does not.

Johnson was handsome as a student and ended up marrying the "prettiest girl at Oxford", Allegra Mostyn-Owen. In typical Johnson fashion, he showed up at the wedding in the wrong clothes and had to borrow a suit from someone else. It was his political ambition that eventually came between the couple and they divorced.  He has been controversial, for example, stating that he wanted illegal immigrants to be granted amnesty to stay in the UK. This is not what the Conservatives want to hear. He contended that if the thousands of illegal immigrants were allowed to stay, they would pay taxes and pay into the system.  Last night, he got into a match of words with Jeremy Paxson on his noted talk show attempting to nail the BBC commentator on his reputed £1 million dollar salary (which the taxpayer funds). Johnson made a point that he only earned £140,000. Paxson was upset and the BBC ended up editing the offensive remarks.

Johnson has always been a super-achiever. He served as President of the prestigious Oxford Union while he was a student there. But he was also a contemporary of Cameron and Osbourne (possibly the next Chancellor of the Exchequer should the Tories win) and all were members of the famous or infamous Bullingdon Club. It's rather like "Skull and Bones" at Yale but without the ghoulishness. They mostly just got drunk, ate good food and caroused on the streets of Oxford overturning tables and being general nuisances. Like all good future politicians should be. He has made no bones of the fact that he does want to be Prime Minister one day.


In this picture of the Bullingdon Club of Oxford, you can spot  both men who want to be Prime Minister. You can see Boris Johnson with the very yellow hair sitting on the step and at 10 o'clock from him is David Cameron. This was taken in 1987.

Johnson cares little for decorum and niceties. He is a straightshooter and people like him because of that.

Johnson doesn't fit the mold of a politician and that is precisely why if I were Cameron, I would be looking behind me for a shock of bleached yellow hair who might just catch up and possibly pass me in the next stretch. We always look for the "wild card" in the election and Johnson may be the one holding it.