YOU’LL have met his type before.

The classic bar room, hyper-opinionated bore. Anti everything that doesn’t relate to his own little life. Say hello to Lee Anderson, the new deputy chair of the Conservative Party in the UK. You might have seen him on the telly at Tory Party conferences. TV journalists court him because he can usually be guaranteed to say something suitably outrageous. Just the chap then, to underscore the PM’s promise to make his party professional at all and every level.

Mr Anderson, a one-time Labour ­councillor turned Tory MP, got his new ­posting off to a typical start by ­championing a return of the death penalty. Once you’re executed, you can’t commit more crimes, was his somewhat chilling logic, delivered with customary chutzpah. He seemed ­impervious to the fact that this wasn’t ­Conservative policy – though doubtless their more swivel-eyed adherents would be cheering him on – and unaware that ­wrongly convicted people killed by the state wouldn’t be able to do a Lazarus either. But hey, they should have got better lawyers. Anyway, omelettes and eggs and all that.

To say that Mr Anderson’s career has been chequered doesn’t quite capture the flavour of a man who was investigated for antisemitism, blocked off a local area with boulders to keep out traveller ­families, joined a Facebook group supporting ­fascists and suggested that Black Lives Matter was a front for a political organisation which ­attacked “our” values and lifestyle.

He had to stop watching England since all these nice boys taking the knee against racism were an affront to decent hard-working racists.

He fancied sending the Navy into the English Channel to repel asylum seekers and wanted the latter “processed” in the Falklands. It is not recorded whether he considers Rwanda second best.

He has a novel solution for people ­considered anti-social too; just decant them into tents and make them pick vegetables. Not sure the growers would fancy this breed of happy, freshly incensed amateurs.

He also explained to us why food banks weren’t really necessary, all that was ­needed was better cookery lessons and more ­education since any idiot could knock up a meal for 30p. When it was pointed out that the writer who suggested this improbable culinary arithmetic did so with a battery of chefs, bulk buying ingredients, ­massive catering trays and facilities for chilling same, his social media ripostes on the subject appeared to get lost in the ether.

In short Mr Anderson’s loud mouth is only outranked by his thick skin and ready ability to spout unverifiable ­nonsense.

Then again, there’s a lot of it about. This is an age where the untalented ­shyster blessed with half-decent communication skills (to match a half-functioning brain) can flourish politically, provided they are content to play to a right-wing gallery ­anxious to believe everything is for the worst in the worst of all possible worlds.

It’s also an age, I’m despondent to ­report, where too many interviewers too often allow stuff and nonsense to go ­unchallenged. Consider, if you can bear it, the case of Nigel Farage, the other barroom pundit who’s been in more parties than Boris Johnson. UKIP, the Brexit ­Party, and now Reform, which had a storming performance at a Lancashire by-election last week polling a whopping 997 votes, a mere 13,071 behind the victorious Labour candidate.

Nigel was “credited” with his then ­party doing well in the European elections and forcing David Cameron’s hand to include the promise of a referendum on Europe in the next Tory manifesto, and thus Brexit, an ADVISORY poll, was born. ­Interestingly, Nige offered the thought that if Brexit didn’t win, he thought there should be another referendum.

Strangely, the advisory nature of the poll is rarely mentioned, nor the tiny winning margin which has somehow morphed into the sacred will of the UK nations and regions. As I say, stuff and nonsense are the new world order.

That episode should have warned us that Barnum and Bailey politics had won the day. Nigel, of course, managed to fall out with his Leave comrades, as he does, eventually, with every colleague in every sect, and raged that they just weren’t anti-EU enough. Unlike his good self who hoovered up years of salaries, expenses and perks as a Member of the European Parliament where he repaid the lucrative compliment by bad-mouthing the rest of the chamber at regular intervals. Nigel is not a nice man. But he gives Artful ­Dodgers a run for their money.

Let us not forget too that he was long and loud in his praise for Donald Trump, appearing on stage at one of his ­rallies, and joining the ludicrous ­chorus of ­American conspiracy theorists who claimed The Donald had actually won in 2020.

The Donald and Nigel love-in was ­continued on Fox “News” where ­Nigel was hired as a commentator (as if this station didn’t already have its fill of ­bampots.) IMBECILIC as this may still, just, seem on this side of the pond, conspiracy theories are all the rage in the home of the batty and the land of the follies. We have just passed the second anniversary of the extraordinary trashing of the US Congress by posses of Trump fans, whipped into a ferocious frenzy by the man who became, for reasons that escape most sentient commentators, the 45th president of the United States. This was an office he neither deserved nor respected and in which, it seems, he did precious little that could be described as work.

(This perhaps laid the philosophical groundwork for a certain workshy UK PM, but I digress).

And now we have the sight of ­Republican members of that same Congress, members who cowered beneath desks to evade the rioting hordes, apparently able to describe that horror, viewed worldwide on TV, as nothing more alarming than your average tourist tour. We have the sight of a new Republican Speaker of the House – after a mere 15 ballots – cosying up to one of the more truly malign of the ­current ­Republican flock, Marjorie Taylor Greene.

Greene’s overt antisemitism, racism, and attachment to any and every dotty ­conspiracy theory which once got her chucked off any committee where she might do damage, has now been ­appointed by Speaker McCarthy to two high profile committees. One of them, heaven help us, is Homeland Security. There is ­nothing ­remotely secure about a homeland in which this gun-toting madwoman is let loose to legislate.

Yet this is where we are in 2023, where bigotry and stupidity are no ­longer ­barriers to advancement on either side of the Atlantic. Indeed, in some ­quarters, they are regarded as essential prerequisites.

Quarters where people like Jacob Rees-Mogg can go on the airwaves with two entirely contradictory statements about the joys of Brexit and emerge ­unscathed. Jacob, like Nigel, should not be underestimated at a time when the script can be re-written without penalty every time the original version proves to owe more to hyperbole than honesty.

Where the awful Nadine Dorries can simper away at her hero Boris Johnson on a TV show and advertise it as an ­interview. Dorries was once the ­minister in charge of culture. As former Tory chair Chris Patten observed: “the words ­Dorries and culture should never appear in the same sentence.”

Then again, in Patton’s day, senior jobs were held by people who could do joined-up thinking. People with what the late Denis Healey used to call “a hinterland”.

Lee Anderson doesn’t so much have a hinterland, as a back garden strewn with the bodies of those fellow citizens he chooses to take against, for no better ­reason, it often seems, than they fail to look and sound like himself.