Throughout and post the General Election, former Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, used his newly minted role of editor of the London Evening Standard to savage his former cabinet colleague Theresa May. On the morning of 9th June he release four front pages, each subsequently becoming increasingly scathing in its personal attacks on May. Booked to appear on ITV’s election night coverage, Osborne looked absolutely delighted upon witnessing the exit polls, cementing his glee a couple of days later in declaring May a “dead woman walking” on Andrew Marr.
This, quite frankly, is all utterly fantastic. George Osborne, after being unceremoniously fired from Government, would rather see his own party fail so to enact a vicious revenge on the person who sacked him. Osborne is being a petty little bitch, and it’s hilarious to watch.
While generally pettiness is seen as negative, internet culture seems to lap it up as a quality to be lauded (“I live to be this petty”), with Osborne beginning to endear himself to some who previously found him a toxic. He’s been soon immortalised in meme form, with a screengrab of him as an election night pundit captioned ‘Get yourself a girl who looks at you the way George Osborne looks at [the] exit polls”, with others shipping his bromance with former dispatch box sparring partner and fellow studio pundit Ed Balls.
Osborne reportedly concluded, as he came down the stairs of Downing Street on 24th June 2016, according to Tim Shipman’s All Out War, “Dave’s fucked, I’m fucked, the country’s fucked.” He expected to be removed from office, despite rumours that the Leave campaign only wanted him shafted to Foreign Secretary. The manner of his sacking is what seemingly ignited Osborne’s hatred for May, who suggested that he should “get to know the party better”, a slap down that he later seemed to return to May on Marr post-election. May’s team supposedly went into overdrive to trash Osborne’s reputation post-firing, and further thwarted his plans to run for a safe London Conservative and Remain constituency by calling a snap election and scrapping the boundary review.
So while he insists that through the Standard he’s simply trying to scrutinise the positions of he disagrees with, it’s pretty obvious what’s going on here. Osborne, a proper vicious Etonian Tory (yes, he didn’t actually go to Eton, but the stereotype still works) is settling some personal scores. May didn’t just sack but slated him. She was condescending, likening him to a naive fool, and he would rather put the political ideology of conservatism that he agrees with at risk of losing power, just to stick it to the bitch wot gave him his P45. And while someone who puts personal vendettas above macro issues clearly shouldn’t be in office (so good job he’s gone for now), he’s putting on a great show, a show that’s made the Standard crucial reading for the first time in years.
So, the Right Honourable George Gideon Oliver Osborne, you snakey, self-centred, narcissistic little bitch (and I mean that as a compliment). You are my petty icon.