II will never forget the euphoria I felt when it was finally confirmed that Donald Trump had lost the 2020 US presidential election. I was standing in my living room when videos surfaced online showing jubilant crowds in New York and elsewhere, and there seemed to be a real global sense of relief. A little happiness in our disastrous world. A moment when it seemed like we might have a future after all. Those were not the feelings I had last week when Boris Johnson finally announced that he was stepping down as UK Prime Minister – so to speak. It was not a moment of joy, but, like most matters of Conservative government, it was accompanied by feelings of embarrassment and the impression that Johnson, as is often the case, behaves as if it were all a joke and not taken seriously. It is one of his most dangerous tools because it is underestimated.
During the ad, he looked like a naughty cat who was taken out of the kitchen. He refrained from losing access to a bowl of milk, leading many of us to believe these were just other charades. Aside from the fear that whatever comes after him might be even worse, there was a strong hunch that he wouldn’t do us the favor of disappearing forever. This, like Berlusconi’s kind of apprentice, will just wait, ready to pounce on us again if the opportunity presents itself (like when he resigned as foreign minister). While David Cameron has somehow found enough dignity to bury himself in his garden shed, Johnson has the energy of a Polly Poli who is always on his feet. A man, not unlike a zombie, without a look at himself, driven by the need for strength and, of course, money.
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