Boris Johnson has previously admired the self-employed, but his recent comments against business throw that into question.
As you climb the stairs of No 10, history looks out at you. Prime Ministers through the centuries seem to stare back at you from their portraits.
But what will the ghosts of Churchill, Macmillan, Heath or Thatcher think of Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson as he bounds up the stairs of No 10 for the first time as Prime Minister (PM)?
He is the Marmite man of British politics and it is interesting that a large percentage of Conservatives have a taste for Marmite.
While the great British public may be holding their breath to see how Boris performs in Downing Street the press just love him. Through the years he has been the court jester, providing headlines, laughs and tittle tattle; a lithe colourful character who could put his foot in his mouth with accomplished ease and has a brass neck you couldn’t burn with a blowtorch.
A changing image
When we last spoke to Boris about the sector, there was a genuine respect and admiration for the men and women who believe in themselves, their talent and their future.
At the time, he was Mayor of London and he was robust in his support for the new growth sector: “In an increasingly competitive global economy, a nimble-footed workforce is essential.
“We are teeming with talented freelancers providing flexibility and specialist expertise. This is helping organisations remain innovative and agile, which is vital …and I’ve no doubt self-employment will be an increasingly important feature of our economy.”
In the recent months there has been a makeover for Boris. Gone is the Worzel Gummidge style unruly hairstyle to be replaced by a neat blonde mop.
The less than satirical outfits have been replaced with outfits that nearly fit.
The expanding waistband has been reduced by running, both in the parks of London and the regional hustings.
We must hope his enthusiasm for the self-employed has not changed.
Boris recently said: “It is clearly the case that access to a diverse pool of freelancers is going to help businesses of all sizes remain lean and efficient, and help them grow. In addition, becoming a freelancer is obviously an attractive employment option for many people.”
The answers came in nano seconds, full of confidence, full of assurance. Over the next few months we must all hope that the same confidence and assurance can translate into positive action.
Let's hope his bite matches his bark
I said at the time that Boris bounded across Britain’s landscape like the Dulux dog; hair unkempt, knocking over all before him, but strangely endearing. But to others he is a mongrel running wild, growling, snapping, hoping one day to be top dog.
Well, today he is the top dog. Let’s hope he’s not barking!
Stand by for a rollercoaster. Brexit without a deal; a snap general election; political carnage as ‘friends’ find themselves discarded. Get it right and he might be seen as the nation’s saviour.
Get it wrong and Churchill, Macmillan, Heath and Thatcher will catch a glimpse of him as he falls down No 10’s stairs for the last time.