The Meh-neral election

You may have noticed that we are going to have a Westminster general election on 4 July. Yet despite the fact that after fourteen miserable years we are finally poised to get rid of the most right wing, mendacious, corrupt, cruel, and chaotic government in living memory, there’s no real widespread excitement and anticipation. That is entirely due to the dismal and disappointing nature of what is likely to replace the Tories. It’s hardly rocket science to know that populism, Brexit, privatisation and obeisance to corporate greed don’t work – just look at the past 14 years for evidence, but for all Keir Starmer’s talk of change, that is exactly what he is going to give us. Both Starmer and Sunak speak of radicalism and change but neither is proposing anything of the sort.

Turn on the radio or TV and although we’ll hear all about the election there’s hardly any mention of Brexit at all even though everyone knows it has failed, failed catastrophically. Even leavers know it, convincing themselves it was handled wrongly when the real reason it failed is because it could never have worked in the first place, it was never designed or intended to do what it was sold to the public as doing, despite the many billions of pounds and the political capital and international standing of the UK that have been wasted in trying to make it work. Yet when pinned down all that Starmer says is that we’ve got to make Brexit work. The very beginnings of change and radicalism are discarding what doesn’t work. Starmer is not willing to discard the hard right Brexit of the Tories even though it is a far more extreme form of Brexit than the Leave campaign promised during the 2016 EU referendum. He’s not even willing to rejoin the European Single Market or Customs Union, the absolute minimum that is required to “make Brexit work.”

Above all else Starmer needs money to rebuild and restore Britain from the wreckage the Tories are leaving. The obvious way to acquire these funds is to focus on the broadest shoulders, Starmer was right to say in 2020 when he was campaigning for the leadership of the Labour party that he would increase income tax for the top 5% of earners, reverse the Tories’ cuts in corporation tax and clamp down on tax avoidance, particularly that of large corporations. He vowed there would be no stepping back from the core principles of the Labour party but he has ditched all the promises that he made back then. As he constantly boasts, he has changed the Labour party. He has changed it into a more competent version of the Tories. That’s the only real change that Starmer is offering, the somewhat more competent delivery of the same right wing populist corporate pleasing policies which have brought public services in the UK to their knees. When you promise change but you are committed to Tory spending plans, you’re lying. Starmer lied in order to win the leadership of the Labour party, he’s lying again now.

Starmer said all the right things in 2020, when he was seeking the leadership of the Labour party, now he’s all, “There’s nowt I can do gov, it was like that when I found it.” All the promises he made in order to secure the leadership of the Labour party have been ditched. He never had the slightest intention of keeping his word. Once he got into office he ruthlessly purged the left of the party. Right wing Tory MPs like Natalie Elphicke are welcome in the Labour party, left wing stalwarts like Diane Abbott and Jeremy Corbyn are not.

Starmer, just like the Tories, has no interest in Scotland, he and Sunak are two peas in the same British nationalist pod. Both Starmer and Sunak are united in their determination to traduce democracy in Scotland. The only popular votes in Scotland which they respect are those which they happen to agree with. They only pay attention to Scotland when they fear that it is a political threat. The real reason that Starmer wants to defeat the SNP in Scotland is so that he can get back to what Anglo-British flag shagging nationalists like him believe to be the proper order of things – ignoring Scotland entirely except as an obedient province of a unitary British national state. If you vote Labour in Scotland you are voting to be ignored and marginalised.

Uninspired, unimaginative, unimpressive and unrealistic are what’s on offer and are exactly what we will get. When an MP as hard right as Natalie Elphicke can slip from party to party, and be welcomed by Starmer with open arms it’s hard to conclude there are any meaningful differences. No wonder this is the Meh-neral election, devoid of excitement and enthusiasm.

After introducing a series of vote suppressing measures, the Tories have decided to encourage young people to vote after all, with the weekend’s announcement of the right wing wet dream of a policy to reintroduce national service. If there’s one way to ensure that young people register to vote and motivate them to turn up at the ballot station with the correct ID, it’s to tell them that they’ll be conscripted and used as cannon fodder for the fever dreams of British nationalist imperialists if they don’t. The way to tackle knife crime amongst young people is to force them to join the army where they can learn more effective methods of killing and maiming people.

People who are too old and too rich to do national service have decided to impose it upon the young people whose futures they have stolen. Nobody born since October 1939 has undertaken National Service in the UK. Those people are now aged at least 85. This policy is aimed at winning the votes of people who never did National Service themselves but who want to force others to do it. Those who did do National Service, like my late husband Andy, almost universally agree that it was a brutalising waste of time.

The Tories have said national service would cost £2.5 billion a year, the money that apparently wasn’t available to pay for pay rises in the NHS and avoid strikes in the beleaguered health service. Yet all of a sudden the cash is magically available.

Remember that thanks to the Tories’ voter suppression laws you need photo ID in order vote, a driving licence or passport or another accepted form of ID. If you don’t have any you can apply for a voter authority certificate instead.


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