The Tory party is about to foist a tasteless joke upon the British people. He cares for nothing but his own fame and gratification.
Six years ago, the Cambridge historian Christopher Clark published a study of the outbreak of the first World War, titled The Sleepwalkers. Though Clark is a fine scholar, I was unconvinced by his title, which suggested that the great powers stumbled mindlessly to disaster.
On the contrary, the maddest aspect of 1914 was that each belligerent government convinced itself that it was acting rationally.
It would be fanciful to liken the ascent of Boris Johnson to the outbreak of global war, but similar forces are in play. There is room for debate about whether he is a scoundrel or mere rogue, but not much about his moral bankruptcy, rooted in a contempt for truth.
A Johnson premiership will almost certainly reveal a contempt for rules, precedent, order and stability.