IT’S been quite the conference for the Conservatives. Suella Braverman going straight from her most unhinged speech yet to stand on a guide dog, two of the most awful people on these islands – Nigel Farage and Priti Patel – dad dancing in haunting unison and finally, tying it up nicely with a hurtling descent to the ultra-right, our favourite pint-sized Prime Minister: Rishi Sunak. It’s been an eventful few days.

The consistent theme throughout? Abject cruelty, misery and the absolute worst of what politics has to offer. If we were in any doubt about what this party has become, we need not look any further than the catalogue of sheer ugliness that we’ve witnessed over the last few days. 

I can’t even bring myself to be light-hearted about it, because truthfully, this conference is the most terrifying thing to happen in British politics for quite some time. They may be on the sharp and deserved decline – and on their way out of the door at Number 10 – but until that door is firmly bolted shut, the cruelty we have seen them gleefully enveloping themselves in over the last few days is free to destroy the fabric of our nations.

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It seems, no matter what the policy area, that Sunak and his cronies remain chronically out of their depth. Not only unable to deliver a single inspiring or genuinely growth-centred policy, but almost impressively being on the wrong side of every single important policy decision that comes across their desks. What does “kicking woke ideology out of science” even mean? Apparently a team of Oxford scientists couldn’t even decipher it. Because it means nothing.

Right-wing, meaningless soundbites are fast becoming this government’s speciality. 

Hell-bent on running the UK even further into the ground than it already is. Besides anything else, it’s utterly embarrassing that this is Britain’s offering to the world stage. 

In the same breath as Sunak claimed to be the “long-term decisions” candidate, he formally announced he was canning the northern HS2 rail link. A real long-term decision and investment that would vastly improve British infrastructure, which finds itself light-years behind other countries already. The fact of it is, his speech, whilst not short on the right-wing dog-whistles – was threadbare in terms of policy. No fresh ideas, no real surprises. Nothing of much substance to be found.

Ironically unsurprising in itself – we have come to expect as little of him throughout his tenure. 

The National: Lee Anderson is the deputy chair of the Conservative Party

Somewhere else amidst all the unpleasantness, the ever-charming Lee Anderson MP unleashed a bizarre attack on children with ADHD, and chalked diagnosis up to “bad parenting” and benefit-scrounging. It seems no-one is safe under these clowns, and there’s no minority that they are unwilling to throw under the bus as they suck-up to the alt-right in a desperate plea for votes. Undoubtedly in preparation for the firm kicking they know they’re in for – and richly deserve – when the next General Election rolls around.

As I said, they might be on their way out – but they’re not out yet. Even once they are, the reverberations of their disastrous leadership will be felt for generations to come.

Especially when what’s likely to come in and replace them is just a slightly diluted version of the same thing. But I cannot possibly spend another minute writing about my disdain for Sir Kid Starver and his lack of, well, anything. He’s finally managed to bore me into silence. 

Though the last few days have spoiled us for choice in terms of awful policy and hate-filled rhetoric, Sunak proudly declaring that his government do not believe that trans people exist was by far the most diabolical performance of it all.

If it walks like fascism, and talks like fascism, at what point do we just call it out for what it is?

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There is an unspoken fear of using that word, as if it’s such an unspeakable word that it should not be uttered. But not speaking it, and turning away from it because it feels uncomfortable is precisely what history teaches us, sternly, not to do.

It’s time we stare this lot in the eye and confront these policies for what they are. 

This unhealthy obsession with the trans community, a community who want only to live in peace, has festered and evolved to the point that the leader of the country felt safe to denounce their existence and right to legal protection in his keynote, televised conference speech.

I fear that Britain is on an incredibly slippery slope into an incredibly miserable and dangerous position.

It’s almost as if it’s just incapable of learning anything from history – indeed its own history – and is committed wholeheartedly to staying stuck in its own self-important, self-sabotaging bubble. A very sad existence – and one that Scotland ought to divorce itself from with an increasing urgency. 

As time closes in on the Tories, and their grip on power loosens, the worse our reality will become.

They know their time is up.

After 13 years of truly terrible governance, punitive policy, child poverty, growth stagnation, economic decline and good old political sleaze, the UK electorate seem to have finally had enough.

The question is, with their grimy hands still clenched around the keys to Number 10: Just how low are they willing to go, whilst they still can? 

If this conference is anything to go by – I suggest we buckle up.