Apparently the only thing that happened today – at least according to the Anglo-British nationalist self-congratulation that passes for the media in this supposed United Kingdom – is that the England team won a fitba match.

However, other things have been happening, and while the British media occupies itself with its orgy of English nationalist self-regard, over the weekend it was reported that the Attorney General Suella Braverman, who makes her Tory colleagues seem liberal, tolerant and respectful of democracy by comparison, has come up with a plan to tackle the inconvenient and embarrassing fact that the policies of this Conservative government are, with increasing frequency, found to be unlawful.

It's a cunning plan.

Henceforth, government lawyers are not to be allowed to tell ministers that their policies are unlawful … problem solved!

It's a democracy-trashing version of the philosophical cliché, if a tree falls in a forest but no one sees it fall, does it make any noise? Braverman's version is, if a policy is illegal but no one says it's unlawful, does it really break the law? The answer to both questions is: of course it does, fool. 


'If independence isn't about improving people’s lives what is the point? '

'Have Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss forgotten they’re minorities?'

It is notable that the Conservatives are extremely keen on the law when it can be used as a weapon against their political opponents. Scotland is being told that it's unlawful for the Scottish Parliament to hold the referendum which the people of Scotland gave it an unambiguous mandate for, the unions are being told that laws will be introduced to prevent workers in certain sectors like transport from going on strike and many forms of peaceful protest have been criminalised. 

Yet this same government blithely ignores or breaks laws that inconvenience it.

It was happy to break international law in order to placate the xenophobic right-wing and send asylum seekers and refugees on a one-way trip to Rwanda.

Johnson was happy to lie to the head of state in order to prorogue Parliament unlawfully.

The British government is now quite prepared to break an international treaty that it itself negotiated and signed because it finds the terms of the Northern Irish protocol politically inconvenient.

Neither Johnson nor Sunak suffered any consequences for breaking lockdown laws. 

Gove, Hancock, Patel and other government ministers who were found by the courts to have acted unlawfully all sailed on regardless. 

But now we find that Liz Truss tells Scotland that she won't allow another referendum because it's “unlawful”. The Conservatives are the party of law and order, but only when it's them laying down the law to everyone else.

Truss is most likely to become the next prime minister – this political lightweight who changes her views with the prevailing wind will continue the sorry pattern of being the worst prime minister ever. She will be a creature of the right-wing European Research Group, and will be incapable of rising to the challenges on the horizon. 

The cost of living crisis is only going to get worse, more and more households will fall into food and fuel poverty, all of which will be exacerbated by the debacle that is Brexit, yet the rich keep getting richer and the fragile democratic safeguards afforded by the British constitution are whittled away while people get more and more angry and frustrated and industrial unrest grows.

This is a crisis that Truss is wholly unsuited for dealing with. She will preside over ever more blatant cronyism and sleaze. Truss may enjoy a brief honeymoon, but the Tories will continue to slide in the polls, and as winter bites and energy prices soar, the slide will become a plummet.

In an effort to save themselves, the Tories will ditch Truss before the next General Election just as they ditched May and Johnson before her. Johnson may yet make the comeback he has threatened, which will serve as a final confirmation that all hope is lost for the UK.

This piece originally appeared on our sister publication, The National Scotland.