Wednesday, November 20, 2019
By Peter Littger
In the first TV duel before the British parliamentary elections, Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn has beaten so well against Boris Johnson that it could still be exciting. The prime minister, on the other hand, was struggling to end his reputation as a liar.
If there is an English-speaking people who did not invent political TV duels, then it's the British. In fact, they introduced the format so late that it could easily be a millionaire question on RTL: When did the British first TV duel take place – in 1987, 1995, 2002 or 2010 – while in 1960, for the first time in history? television and the US faced two presidential candidates (John F. Kennedy and then Vice President Richard Nixon), ruled in London for five more decades, the fear in the minds of the heads of government, you can in a TV duel bad or at least unfavorable and Just like British Prime Minister Boris Johnson did on TV last Tuesday evening. Before the parliamentary elections on December 12, it was Johnson's first of a total of four live roundtables with Jeremy Corbyn, his political opponent of the Labor Party. And the only tangible thing you want to tell the bearded challenger with the glasses after the discussion is a mirror. So he can look again at how strangely crooked the glasses are in his face, how fogged a glass is – and how cheeky he would look as Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Hopefully he sees it! Laughing at Johnson's lies Selfies with the Labor head before the TV debate. (Photo: via REUTERS) In fact, the dangers of television duels from the point of view of the incumbents are really great, considering everything that is going wrong or, from the point of view of the democracy that has been repeatedly praised by British politicians, really good. For example, a single presenter could ask precisely and stubbornly. That's what journalist Julie Etchingham did on Tuesday evening. In addition, the performance could be unpredictable through a mix of relevant questions from the presenter, the audience and the respective challenger. That too was the case this time. Or the studio audience might laugh at the wrong or from the point of view of critical and annoyed voters in the right places.Boris Johnson will have felt on Tuesday evening that moment as the harshest punch in the stomach when the spectators could not hold anymore after he tried had to come away with the little lewd little saying "I think so". How had the question been? "Does the truth matter in this election – is the truth (still) important in this campaign?" With small eyes, Johnson, who was already a little tired and limp, had to endure how he bawled over him for a brief moment – and probably in larger parts of the population as well, as if England had scored a goal. It is undoubtedly a remarkable fact of British politics in times of Brexit that a prime minister is openly and everywhere referred to as a "liar" – and may be called unpunished: by journalists, parliamentarians, lawyers and judges. Of course, this accusation is part of the dramaturgical repertoire before each election: that the representatives of the opposing party lie. Especially the Tories had to endure earlier sayings like "Cons con" ("Conservative dizzy and cheat"). But with a "Lord of the Lies" at their head, over which the people laugh out loud – with this flaw the Tories have never entered the race.New tense in the tough campaign Although it is certainly in this first duel the goal of Boris Johnson was his challenger Jeremy Corbyn as unpredictable and petty Marxists stand and let hang again as "girl's blouse", he just did not succeed. The "girl's blouse" in the English slang stands for a coward, a washcloth and especially for a Zauderer who keeps all options open, shy responsibility and in the end everyone is frustrated. But Corbyn has not only struck bravely against the fanciful rhetoric Johnson. He seemed more mature, rested, and better prepared over longer stretches of the one-hour debate. And even if he may have been too old-fashioned for some spectators, in terms of morality and persuasiveness he has risen so unbounded and even strengthened from the fighting ring that it could still be exciting in this overall arduous campaign. Would not there be the real Zauderthemen who charged Jeremy Corbyn – especially the B-word "Brexit", the R-word "Referendum" and the S-word "Scotland". For any proud Englishman, they automatically lead to the unbearable I-Word "Independence", Scotland's independence aspiration. Boris Johnson has at least understood how to make all these topics to small to medium-sized frightening ghosts, such as the repeatedly repeated allegation that Jeremy Corbyn could form a coalition with Nicola Sturgeon, so the head of the "Scottish National Party". Corbyn could easily and confidently deny it.Corbyn for Brexit Second ReferendumFor Brexit he was (by his standards) just as clear: he would ask the population to once again, so there will definitely be a second referendum! Well, and as for the unity of the kingdom, which of course defended Johnson as "One Nation Tory" with verve, Corbyn remained more open – and then sounded for a moment as one who combines the backward labor struggle and the progressive treason treachery: Sure "Union is somehow important – but fairness is even more important. Politics must prevent the social decline of society, where billionaires live on one side and poor people on the other, and if that is better in Scotland and with the EU … in any case, it would be just as important to try new ways such as the 4-day week in industrial companies. It was Corbyn's most courageous move! Just what Boris Johnson has been praying in prayer over the past weeks and months – directing people's attention from Brexit to other important fields of politics – Jeremy Corbyn has achieved in this duel. For example, when it came to the controversial issue of NHS, the state's national health system. Government critics fear that Johnson will privatize it and, as Corbyn pointed out, "sell it off to the US and the pharmaceutical giants." For this, the Labor chief even submitted specially researched evidence to show that a series of confidential meetings between Johnson's government and US officials took place. The issue of climate and environmental protection had so little control over Boris Johnson he failed to outdo or at least neutralize Corbyn. From the point of view of the conservative ruling party, after this somewhat meager appearance of Johnson in any case of "Corbyn Neutral" will be out of the question for a long time!