Boris Johnson takes on Extinction Rebellion at book launch

Boris Johnson takes on Extinction Rebellion at book launch
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To the launch of the final volume of Charles Moore's biography of Margaret Thatcher at Banqueting House. A mix of cabinet ministers, government aides and hacks descended on the Policy Exchange bash to hear both Moore and Boris Johnson speak. With the climate change Extinction Rebellion protests shutting down Whitehall, a number of ministers arrived via an underground tunnel to minimise disruption.

Taking to the stage to pay credit to his former boss Charles Moore for his work on the biography, the Prime Minister said that he had been advised against attending by his own team:

'I am afraid that the security people didn’t want me to come along tonight because they said the road was full of uncooperative crusties and protesters of all kinds littering the road. And they said there was some risk that I would be egged.'

However, Johnson then asked himself: 'What would Maggie do?'. Answering that question meant he felt he had no choice but to attend.

The Prime Minister went on suggest that both Greta Thunberg and the protesters on the street outside could learn a thing or two from Thatcher:

'I hope that when we go out from this place tonight and we are waylaid by importunate nose-ringed climate change protesters we remind them that [Thatcher] was also right about greenhouse gases.

And she took it seriously long before Greta Thunberg. And the best thing possible for the education of the denizens of the heaving hemp-smelling bivouacs that now litter Trafalgar Square and Hyde Park, the best thing would be for them to stop blocking the traffic and buy a copy of Charles’s magnificent book so that they can learn about a true feminist, green and revolutionary who changed the world for the better.'

While Mr S heartily recommends Moore's latest tome, Steerpike is unsure this sales pitch is the most effective on offer.

Written bySteerpike

Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to