The Politics of ...

The Politics of ...

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

What happened?

See? I told you the madness hadn't stopped. The unpredictable world continues to confound as it nudges closer to a surreality no one could have envisioned.

I got fooled. I spent all day Wednesday 7th feeling like I had the despair of the country on my shoulders and I'm betting I wasn't the only one. I had a period of optimism with about a week to go, but that evaporated faster than dog piss on a summer path and by the day before I was preparing for a bloody grim future.

Election day dawned and I bumbled about; encouraged people on Facebook to vote; went for a beer and tried to feel less pessimistic. Then reports started coming in of a huge turnout (not as big as the referendum but almost) and something hitched in my heart - a big turn out is a bad thing for the Tories. Maybe we can reduce them to no more than they had?

The day moved on; social media was still awash with reports of students queuing round the block.

Then, in a moment that is difficult to describe, three people I know who were Tory voters said they voted Labour and another was considering it, quite strongly. That was the moment I started to wonder if I'd done what so many others had done and bought the MSM line, while others were getting fed up with the constant Corbyn bashing. Perhaps my Farage Theory about the public going for the underdog, especially one who appeared to speak your language but was hated by the 'establishment' was going to come true?

The wife, always a beacon of calm in most every situation, told me to stop sounding optimistic. We went and voted. It was literally - in relative terms - heaving and had been for most of the day. The wife told me to stop being optimistic.

We watched a program at 9.15pm. It was going to finish at 10pm when the Exit Poll was revealed. I can't remember the program we watched, my mind was on something else. When it finished, the wife, who was about to go to bed, was adamant she didn't want to see the Exit Poll, but it flashed up on the screen before she could switch off. My eyes widened and I found myself feeling optimistic. The wife said it was a poll and polls were wrong and went to bed. I knew that the most this poll would be was 10% out and if that was the case, Theresa May was buggered.

Now, we have much confusion and the popular humorous description seems to be: the party that won lost, and the party that lost won. It's pretty much accurate and if you want to be a stunted debater you will stick to that result alone. The truth is, the 100+ seat majority that Theresa May honestly believed she could get in April actually turned into a hung parliament. The obliterated Labour Party under the unelectable Jeremy Corbyn gained 30+ seats, took a further 100 seats to within a 1% swing and pretty much proved all the doubters so wrong the hypocrisy floating around the press and political spectrum is highly amusing.

He still comes in for ridicule, like the BBC (as a prime example) didn't notice that there was a growing army of people slamming them for their biased coverage* and have just carried on regardless. Corbyn also has had a number of right wing press people attacking him even more harshly than before, but this, like the BBC, seems to have not swayed public opinion in the slightest. Jeremy Corbyn's enemies are now viewed by a majority of people as puerile and infantile - this is another massive positive - they also sound very, very scared.

The way this works in the House of Commons is essentially this: The Tories have 318 seats, but in reality they have 317 (because John Bercow doesn't vote), but Sinn Fein have 7 seats and do not take their place in the parliament (because they are Irish republicans), so therefore the Tories technically have a majority anyhow, but they are seeking a deal with the DUP in Northern Ireland to ensure they can muddle through for five more years. This means a highly probable watering down of their extremely damaging manifesto and more focus on helping a large group of people who didn't vote for them. The Tories won, but, with a bit of luck, the country has won more. We might have seen the end of austerity politics and less fear of the future.

We might also see an end to this utter bollocks called Hard Brexit, which a small hard-line bunch of fuckwits are still pushing for, despite even non-experts claiming if we don't do something less suicidal we'll be fucked up beyond all recognition.

We might also see another general election. I know that fills people with dread but after a few months of a Tory coalition of chaos, we might all want one to put us out of our misery. I expect if that happens in the next six months then Labour will romp to a 50 seat majority. So, it's in the Tories interest to cling onto power and, remarkably, if they can, I expect a softer kinder Tory party, because they are running scared and they know that Jeremy is waiting in the wings with his new style of politics to transform the country.

Even if you think Labour's economic policy is bad for the country; ask yourself this - has the Tory's economic policy for the last 7 years done you any favours - Mr Average Normal Income Person? Didn't think so. So, however much you fear Labour's economic plan; give it a chance, it can't screw you any more than the present one (unless you earn shit loads of dosh, then I couldn't give a fuck about you and I'm sure most others don't either).

One last point, or rather one last layer of paint - Corbyn turned obliteration into 40% of the popular vote. He did this by not attacking his opponents, by talking about hope and a brighter future. This alone is not what politicians usually do. There are a lot of people out there who positively hate him, whether it is irrational or not, many of the left wing look at Theresa May, Boris Johnson or Pob and fear they might be rendered sexually impotent for life. So when an idiot tells you Corbyn is dangerous, ask them if they can imagine a naked Boris and a naked Theresa rutting like a couple of dirty stags.

*There is a myth that the BBC is left wing. It isn't a myth, as an entire thing it always was a little left-ish. The BBC deny this, but the political editor was a little like the Speaker of the House, someone from the main two parties, alternating when the sitting one steps down - John Bercow is a Tory (he's hated by Tories), Betty Boothroyd before him was Labour. They essentially are in charge of the House - they are the power in that room. The BBC used to have a Left-leaning Political Editor, then a right-leaning and so on and so forth. Then when Nick Robinson left, the BBC News department also got a new head, a former Tory aid; he appointed Laura Kuenssberg, who made Nick Robinson - a bit of a far-right winger - look like Jeremy Corbyn.
BBC News is the far-right wing of the BBC. Everyone now knows this; hopefully they will see the writing on the wall and change their position; they have more chance of remaining at the BBC under Labour.

Monday, 5 June 2017

Dignity trumps Lies

One thing will stick in the minds of rational people over the coming weeks and it will be that Jeremy Corbyn excelled himself during the election campaign. He proved, beyond a shadow of a doubt that being 'unelectable' is a term coined by the right-wing media and not by the discerning general public.

Yes, he will probably lose, but he won't lose by the landslide everyone was pretty much sure about and he has done very little in the face of open hostility to warrant any of the abuse he's received. His dignity is intact, unlike the woman who will probably wake up on Friday as PM (without the mandate she craved). Corbyn has proved a lot of people wrong and his ultimate failure on Thursday has to be laid at the feet of the Parliamentary Labour Party, who, had they been united behind their leader from Day One, might have been trying to sort out the mess the Tories have made of the country on Friday.

The real shame is that Jeremy is 68 and while Churchill carried on into his 80s, we now live in a world where people (are supposed to) live longer but politicians are an increasingly younger breed. Maybe someone like Clive Lewis or Barry Gardiner (a real star and a half) will step up to the plate and continue the work of a genuine socialist Labour Party? Corbyn will probably stick around for a few more years, so he's there as would-be guru to the successors - a real advantage.

This General Election has helped me rediscover the brilliance of Jeremy Corbyn and how he's weird in that you can't help feeling he's got ME at the heart of his ideas. When he says 'for the many' you actually believe him, whereas with most politicians you dismiss something like that as an election slogan. He's reasonable, doesn't attack people and wants a fairer society - therefore he's obviously the 'dangerous man' anachronistic bigots all over the country feel he is. I mean, he wouldn't press the button first, so because he isn't prepared to incinerate me without thinking means he must be a twat and I should ignore him; preferring to throw my lot in with the politician who already hates me and treats me with disdain - she's the one, yeah!

Look, 52% of the 72% who voted for Leave are essentially misguided fools; when you want the UK public to do something in their own interests you really can't rely on them. Many of these people have swallowed the right wing media, hook, line and sinker, and because facts couldn't sway them in their referendum decision, why shouldn't they believe that a 68-year-old allotment user who is against war is a threat to security and is a terrorist sympathiser? It makes no sense, but Mike, a 64 year old former builder from Lincolnshire doesn't give a fook what a nice man Jeremy is, he's a fooking terrorist sympathiser who won't destroy me if he needs to.

He's dangerous because he won't kill me...

I do honestly think the UK has far too many twats, morons and idiots now. Something has got to give.

The saddest part of this general election is that the Tories will waste no time in decimating whatever is left of the country, so by the time 2022 comes around and The Fred the Dustman Party could beat them in an election, it won't matter, because whoever gets in won't be able to raise the money to change it back to a fairer society. Everything will be privately-owned and you can bet one of the last things the Tories will do, around 2021, as they prepare to go and live in the Bahamas, will be to ensure legislation gets through parliament preventing subsequent parliaments being able to change things back. If Labour can leave a sarcastic note saying there's no money left, the Tories will ensure that there's nothing of anything left.

This will ultimately be shoved, like shit from a cow's arse, onto young people. Your children are going to face a very horrible world. The world of the future will be much more expensive as the effects of Brexit begin to show on supermarket shelves. The opportunities for careers will be limited; the Tories will always create zero hour, low paid jobs, but they won't be able to create if there is no demand for the services a job provides. With a Dementia Tax looming, there will be a huge rise in unscrupulous finance companies offering ways out of having to sell your house to pay for your care; or they'll come up with ways of your children inheriting your money, unaware that if you can't pay for your dementia, the onus will eventually fall onto your kids' shoulders. Most average middle class families will be forced into a situation where every single one of them will be on the precipice of poverty.

The real tragedy about allowing this particular Tory party to run the country for the next 5 years is that it's probably the last five years you will ever remember where you were reasonably happy about being alive.