10 of the worst things that politicians from around the world have said this week

Greg Evans
Sunday 16 August 2020 09:45
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Picture:(WILL OLIVER/EPA/Ross D. Franklin/AP/WPA Pool/ Getty Images)

Another week has gone by and it was hardly a great few days for the people that are supposed to be governing our countries.

With the threat of coronavirus still lingering in the air, we've had added debacles surrounding exam results, racism, migrants, protests against 'dictators' and one politician calling fires 'lies.'

The usual suspects, such as Trump, Johnson, Farage, Putin and Bolsonaro all contributed their best quotes to their already shameful repertoire but we've had a few contributions from others too.

Leo Varadker jumps to the defence of white middle-class men

As a politician who isn't known for dropping many clangers, it was a surprise to see Ireland's Leo Varadker attempt to defend white middle-class men just months after the Black Lives Matter movement highlighted racial inequality and injustice.

In the middle of a row between Fine Gael senator Barry Ward and Sinn Fein senator Lynn Boylan, the former Taoiseach, shared a clip of their debate on legislation and claimed that Sinn Fein doesn't want you if you are "white, male or even worse middle-class", which probably wasn't the wisest thing he has ever said:

Alexander Lukashenko calls his own people "sheep"

Alexander 'Europe's Last Dictator' Lukashenko is currently witnessing widespread protests in Belarus after he won an election, the results of which have been heavily disputed. The 65-year-old. who has been the president of the former Soviet nation since 1994, boldly claimed that those protesting are being influenced by powers from Ukraine, Russia, Czech Republic and Poland before calling his own people "sheep". He was quoted as saying:

They are directing our sheep, who don’t understand what they are doing.

Boris Johnson calls downgraded election results 'robust'

The biggest scandal to hit the UK this week was the fiasco surrounding the A-levels results process which were predicted as students were not able to sit exams due to the coronavirus pandemic. The system that was used to determine the results saw 40 per cent of students' results downgraded, especially amongst disadvantaged individuals.

The debacle saw education secretary Gavin Williamson come under scrutiny but Boris Johnson came to his defence by claiming that they were "robust" and "dependable for employers", which will definitely put those aggrieved students' minds at rest.

Jair Bolsonaro calls Amazon rainforest fires that you can actually see a 'lie'

We travel to South America now, where Brazil saw a spike in fires in the Amazon rainforest in 2019 and a year later more than 10,000 fires were reported in the area in the first 10 days of August. However, in a speech to other world leaders Brazil’s right-wing populist president Jair Bolsonaro challenged others to fly over the rainforest and spot any fires, which he claimed weren't even real.

They won’t find any spot of fire, nor a quarter of a hectare deforested. This story that the Amazon is going up in flames is a lie and we must combat it with true numbers.

Vladimir Putin claims that Russia has created the first coronavirus vaccine

News of a coronavirus vaccine would have been greeted with jubilation and socially distanced parties in the streets except the news of a first vaccine came from Vladimir Putin, possibly one of the most hated people on the planet. The Russian president announced that his country had created the world's first vaccine of the deadly virus and that one of his adult daughters had already been inoculated.

The vaccine which took less than two months to test on humans has been greeted with widespread doubt from experts with Professor Francois Balloux, director of University College London’s Genetics Institute calling the news "reckless and foolish" adding:

Mass vaccination with an improperly tested vaccine is unethical. Any problem with the Russian vaccination campaign would be disastrous both through its negative effects on health, but also because it would further set back the acceptance of vaccines in the population.

Nigel Farage tries to shame migrants for going on a tour of Anfield only for it backfire on him

No matter what's going on, Nigel Farage always manages to find a way to keep himself in the news. Whether he's calling migrants arriving on the beach in Kent or wearing a truly questionable outfit in Dover, Farage can't keep his face off our screens.

Perhaps the worst and most shameless thing he did this week was attack Liverpool football club for taking migrants on a tour of Anfield, which he approximated to them saying that they might get a chance to play in the Premier League.

This tasteless stunt from Farage further displayed just how low his politics is willing to sink to but Liverpool's mayor Joe Anderson wasn't going to take it. Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Anderson said:

If he wants to talk football I'll say he's a substitute – for a human being. He's been relegated, he's just totally irrelevant now isn't he. We have actually just told the government that we want to do more as a city for refugees and welcome more people in. 

Here in Liverpool we will take absolutely no lessons from that man. Liverpool is a humanitarian city and it will always be a humanitarian city and we would much rather see refugees here than Nigel Farage. He will never be welcome in this city and he can stay away.

James Cleverly accuses Ben and Jerry's of 'virtue signalling' and being 'overpriced'

The storm that Farage kicked up about the migrants caused a minor incident after the home secretary, Priti Patel had suggested that the navy be used to prevent migrants from crossing the English Channel. This prompted ice cream makers Ben and Jerry's to voice their opinion on the situation by absolutely unloading on Patel with a thread that has now been shared more than 49,000 times on Twitter.

Of course, a lot of Tory MPs took exception to this and began to criticise Ben and Jerry's for wading into the argument, but the worst take of all had to come from James Cleverly, who is well known for running his mouth on Twitter, who accused the ice cream makers who tried to make a joke about their product and virtue signalling. It was so bad that even a parody account pretending the be the Downing Street cat shut him down.

Tory MP tells Gary Lineker to put 'illegal immigrants' up in his home

Sticking with the topic of migrants, former footballer and all-around good guy Gary Lineker found himself being attacked by the Tory MP for Ashfield, Lee Anderson after Lineker suggested that migrants deserve our help and not to be scorned at.

The Match of the Day host was taken to task about this by Anderson who told talkRADIO:

If Gary Lineker wants to email me his full name, address, postcode and details of the accommodation that he currently resides in, I will make sure that's available for the next boat of illegal immigrants to come and live in – bed and breakfast of course.

It's the liberal left again, virtue signalling, trying to say all the right things, trying to tweet out the right messages on social media to look popular. But I'll tell you what, it's not popular, because the silent majority in this country are right behind the common sense group.

Why do Tories keep us the phrase 'virtue signalling?' Anyway, Lineker's almost effortless response to this was to share a screenshot of an email that he received from a refugee charity where he had offered to house refugees in his abode.

Trump claims that a 1917 flu, which actually happened in 1918, ended the Second World War

In terms of bonkers weeks its been a relatively quiet one for Donald Trump but he did still find a way to embarrass himself. Speaking on Monday, at his daily coronavirus press briefing, Trump wrongly cited the 1917 Spanish flu pandemic as being the reason why the Second World War ended.

Firstly, the pandemic in question actually took place in 1918 and it didn't end the Second World War, which started more than two decades later and ended in 1945.

Mike Pence doesn't want Kamala Harris to take away America's meat

The news that Kamala Harris will be Joe Biden's running mate for the presidential election sent shockwaves through the US political system. So much so that vice president, Mike Pence fears that the senator will take away his red meat.

Fearing that a proposed policy by Harris to lessen the impact of climate change by reducing the amount of processed meat that is being made in the US, Pence rallied Trump supporters by claiming that Democrats want to stop Americans eating meat altogether.

Apart from being an absolutely ridiculous thing to say, it's not even concrete if that's what Biden and Harris actually want to do.

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