Vote Tory vote flag shagger, Vote Labour vote flag shagger

Voters in most of the UK have a very clear choice at the next Westminster general election, they can vote for the British flag shagging party, or they can vote for the British flag shagging party. Keir Starmer constantly boasts about how he has changed the Labour party, it is not an idle boast, he has indeed changed the Labour party, he has changed it into what the Tories used to be before the narrow victory for leave in 2016’s EU referendum drove them over the edge into the insanity of further and further right wing anti-foreigner English nationalist populism.

The Tories are now full on deranged. It’s a party which is all consumed by its internal power struggles and which has lost all sight of political reality. Many Tory MPs are now so far down the G Beebies rabbit hole that they genuinely believe that all they need to do in order to restore their party’s fortunes is to stick a few asylum seekers on a one way flight to Rwanda, preferably after a fight with the European Court of Human Rights, or to have yet another leadership change and replace the hopeless and unpopular Rishi Sunak with some other leader who will quickly reveal themselves to be equally as hopeless and unpopular.

It’s easy, and let’s be honest, highly enjoyable, to take pleasure in the misfortunes of a deeply nasty and unpleasant Conservative party, but it is dangerous to pretend that the threat from right wing English nationalist authoritarian populism will be gone once the Tories receive their well deserved drubbing at the polls.

British politics are uniquely and dangerously susceptible to being taken over by the forces of right wing populism. In no small measure this is due to the characteristics of British nationalism, a nationalism which has at its core the unshakeable belief that it is better than the nationalism of lesser nations by virtue of not being nationalist at all. British nationalism is functionally indistinguishable from English nationalism but the structure of the UK, comprised as it is by three entire nations and a part of a fourth enables the dominant English nationalist driving force of British politics to cloak itself in a false internationalism which disguises the true nature of Anglo-British nationalist populism.

This makes it easy for far right authoritarian forces to become influential in British politics while hiding their true nature as populist nationalists. This is precisely what has been the trajectory of British politics over the past few years, a process which has accelerated rapidly since the narrow victory of the leave campaign in the 2016 EU referendum. Since then, both the Labour and Conservative parties have shifted sharply to the right.

British politics are now more unstable and faster moving than they have been in living memory, the current drooling rage-fest that is the Tory party, trundling along 20 points behind in the polls and facing a likely electoral collapse was riding high just five years ago and won a landslide victory in 2019. With the volatile state of British politics it could easily do so again at the general election after the next one, a task which will be facilitated by a new Labour government which is likely to become unpopular very rapidly as the promise of ‘change’ upon which it was elected turns out to be as threadbare as the promises which Starmer made to secure the leadership of the Labour party and then trashed as soon as he got his feet under the desk.

Out of power the Tories are likely to pivot even further to the right, fully embracing an intolerant authoritarian right wing Anglo-British nationalism. Over the weekend, the Sunday Telegraph reported that an internal poll of the Conservative party found that almost half of all Tory councillors think the current government is “too left-wing”. Meanwhile the Conservative Post website, funded by the billionaire Conservative donor Peter Cruddas, who was controversially given a peerage by Boris Johnson in 2020, has published a hit list of so called ‘liberal centrists’ whom it wants to see deselected as Tory candidates for not being sufficiently right wing and Thatcherite. The website has asked its readers to contact the local Conservative associations of the named MPs to urge their deselection as candidates and their replacement by candidates on the right of the party.

Those named include Victoria Atkins, the Health Secretary, and Alicia Kearns and Caroline Nokes, who chair select committees, as well as Laura Trott, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Tobias Ellwood, the former defence select committee chairman, Alan Mak, the business minister, Bim Afolami, and MPs, Roger Gale, Simon Hoare and Alberto Costa.

Following what increasingly looks like an inevitable general election defeat the Tory right will be in the ascendant and Suella Braverman and Kemi Badenoch will both fancy their chances of seizing the leadership while Boris Johnson will be eyeing his chances of making a come back. The Tory party will complete its conversion into an anti-immigration authoritarian right wing populist party in the mould of Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party in Hungary of the woefully misnamed Truth and Justice Party in Poland.

The rightward shift of the Conservatives has a similar effect on the Labour party, which itself triangulates to the right as it attempts to prevent support from haemorrhaging on its right and to forestall criticism from an increasingly right wing media. This is already happening. Just this weekend shadow foreign secretary David Lammy published a piece in The Sun defending the use of the Union flag on Labour campaign flyers Lammy said anyone complaining about the Union flag on Labour material had it “wrong”.

Lammy defended the use of the flag by appealing to that other favourite trope of right wing British nationalists, WW2. He wrote: It was the flag that went to battle against Hitler’s racism. I’ve always felt abandoning it to racists was a betrayal of its anti-fascist heritage.”

Further proof of the Torification of the Labour party comes from shadow health secretary Wes Streeting, who in an article in The Sun over the weekend – The Sun is seemingly the go-to publication for Starmer’s Labour party, has written that as Health Secretary in a future Labour government he would force NHS England to use services from the private health sector. During his campaign for the leadership of the Labour party, Starmer insisted that he would not talk to The Sun. Chalk that up as yet another of his many lies.

Using language which would not be out of place on GB News, Streeting claimed that people complaining about increased use of private services in the NHS were “middle-class lefties” – and tried to draw a dividing line between them and “working families”. Apparently in the eyes of the modern Labour party you cannot be left wing and part of a “working family”. Who knew?

Meanwhile Josh Simons, the director of the very influential Labour thinktank Labour Together, published a piece in the Telegraph chock full of the same right wing tropes so beloved by the Tory right in which he claimed that the government “have not made the average working family better off, just increased our population”. Adding that “migrants should contribute to the pot before they take from it”, and “homes should be built for British citizens before those who live here temporarily”. This is the same guy who recently suggested that asylum seekers should be sent to a “remote” Scottish island, prompting Labour’s Scottish branch office to claim disingenuously that the director of a Labour think tank that was influential in Starmer’s victory in the Labour leadership campaign in 2020 and which remains highly influential with the Labour leadership is a “fringe” figure.

British politics is on a dangerously right wing and intolerant trajectory, the flag shagging is the least of our worries.


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