Party politics aside, it’s not a good feeling when your prime minister is a bad man

Published: April 30, 2017 at 10:54am

If you ask people why they’re so increasingly uncomfortable with the situation at the top, they’ll list specific reasons, incidents, scandals. Then they might even qualify them with entirely irrelevant remarks about the economy – irrelevant because ‘I’m making money so it’s OK if the government is corrupt’ is a total non sequitur.

But what they are really saying, if you listen carefully, is that they are nervous and uneasy about having bad people in charge. They don’t feel safe. They feel tense.

This issue of good and bad is a fascinating one. Lots of people don’t recognise bad people when they see them. And they don’t recognise good people either. Just as bad people often come heavily disguised, so do good people come camouflaged as something else entirely.

Occasionally, things crystallise, generally after a series of events or when people have had enough time to bring together disparate pieces of information to form a clearer picture in their minds. The seismic shift that has occurred over the last few months is that people are now looking at those at the top and thinking ‘bad people – very bad people’.

While the Prime Minister has from the outset sought to distance himself from those around him, by letting them do the obvious dirty work while he plays at being the clean prince, this has now become impossible. Events have escalated to the point where sensible people can see – perhaps ‘sense’ would be a better word – that those in charge of the country are embroiled in a level of criminality that we haven’t even begun to partly unveil yet.

But it’s the badness that gets people: that the men in control are bad characters. This dawning awareness has created most of the upset.

The country has been hijacked, using the popular vote