Whoever advised Theresa May to beg the opposition parties for help now that she’s thrown away her majority clearly assumes that the British public are such a bunch of dull-witted simpletons that we’ll have simply forgotten what the Tory narrative was just twelve weeks ago when Theresa May announced her vanity election.
“Crush the saboteurs” shrieked Theresa May’s propaganda stormtroopers at the Daily Mail as she brazenly lied that parliament had tried to obstruct Brexit, when all they’d tried to do was to make two very sensible amendments to the Article 50 bill.
One amendment attempted to mandate the government to begin considering the rights of EU citizens in the UK, and the other proposed a parliamentary vote on the final Brexit outcome (basically to stop Theresa May from unilaterally turning the UK into an pariah state by stropping away from the negotiations with nothing and triggering a global economic meltdown for which Britain and the British would be blamed).
Then Theresa May spent the entire election campaign smearing Jeremy Corbyn and the other opposition parties from the comfort of her rigorously enforced Tory safe spaces, rather than facing them in honest debate.
The only reason Theresa May and her allies called her vanity election was to eradicate the political opposition and obtain absolute power to impose a savagely right-wing version of Brexit.
Theresa May and her inner circle were unsatisfied with a simple parliamentary majority, and wanted a super-majority so that they could rule over the UK as a de facto dictatorship.
Unfortunately for Theresa May 58% of voters didn’t do as we were told by the right-wing propaganda barons and vote Tory, meaning she ended up actually losing her majority and putting herself in such a position of weakness that she’s having to beg for help from the very same people she was deriding as terrorist sympathisers just a few weeks ago.
Several people have tried to argue that this move from Theresa May is a “trap”, but it’s far too inept to be a trap.
The theory is that it’s an effort to tar the opposition parties with culpability for the absolute mess the Tories are creating, but in reality it’s a massive propaganda own-goal dreamt up by someone with so little political nous that they thought that Theresa May could soften her tyrannical hard-right persona by doing a spectacular U-turn and suddenly presenting herself as a thoughtful and cooperative political moderate rather than a “bloody difficult woman”.
The problem of course is that public perceptions can’t just be changed like that overnight.
Theresa May just spent the last three months creating the impression that she was an uncooperative isolationist wannabe-dictator. She can’t suddenly recast herself as a free spirit of love, peace, cooperation, and harmony just because she’s been handed her arse by the electorate and then got a new strategist from the BBC!
This attempt to soften her image just reeks of weakness. A woman reduced to faking amiability and grovelling on her knees by her own narcissism and hubris.
A Prime Minister so afraid of the treachery of her own backbenchers that she’d rather turn to her sworn enemies for support than her own party!
In her weakness Theresa May has handed the opposition parties a propaganda narrative every bit as potent as that ridiculous “no money left“ joke note that Labour’s Liam Byrne left at the Treasury for his Tory successors in 2010.
Theresa May has created a rod for her own back because every time the Tories seek to strip out opposition or House of Lords amendments to their proposed legislation, the opposition parties can chime in unison “you asked us for our help, and now you’re ganging up with your bigoted DUP mates to deliberately ignore it”.
Literally every time the Tories undergo the entirely normal government activity of opposing or unpicking opposition amendments, they’re going to be hit with a barrage of “you asked for our advice and you’re not listening” complaints from the opposition parties!
It’s a ridiculous blunder.
By begging for help Theresa May has also opened the door to the opposition parties collaborating to develop their own progressive cross-party legislation and challenging the Tory party to make themselves look like arrogant fools by shooting it down, even though they were the ones who asked for this kind of cross-party collaboration in the first place.
Of course the “it’s a trap” instinct is understandable when it comes to the Tories. Just look at the way they used the hapless Lib-Dems as human bullet shields for five years and then threw their austerity-mutilated corpses into the political lime pit in 2015.
The difference of course is that the Tories are now in a very much weaker and more divided position than they were in 2010, and they’re also led by the most inept and directionless Prime Minister in living memory who has managed, in the space of just a single year, to paint the Tory party into a political corner with her petty belligerence and her fanatical blue-kip posturing.
Yes. She really is that bad that she makes the absolute chancer David Cameron look like a strategic mastermind in comparison!
So don’t worry, it’s not a “trap”. it’s actually yet another absolute Tory gift to the opposition parties who can now bring up “you were the one to ask us for our help” at opportune moments for as long as she clings onto power, just like they can with all of the other weapons she’s gifted them (like “strong and stable leadership”).
It’s not a “trap”. It’s just another absolute pratfall from a shockingly inept Prime Minister who is set to be immortalised as a real life morality tale about the dangers of being consumed by one’s own hubris and narcissism.