If you’re a political whizz, a dyed-in-the-wool Tory/Blairite, part of the aristocracy or a member of the rich elite then this blog is probably not for you. If it seems like I’ve over simplified a complicated subject, it is because this blog is aimed at ‘normal’ people, like me, and this is how I best understand it. I’ve put together a list below of simple things we can do to make sure that Labour win.
(TLDNR go to bottom of page)
It won’t be easy though, and the conspiracy theorist in me still wonders whether the Tories are trying to throw this election in order to leave the post-Brexit clean-up to someone else, a bit like that time Dave did. It’s a pretty wild theory, but Theresa May’s arrogantly clandestine approach to ‘connecting’ with her electorate is bizarre to say the least. I’d originally written a bit more about it with a punchline about bringing back fox hunting, but they beat me to it.
In 2015 I was in favour of spoiling the ballot paper because I was so disillusioned with the state of politics and lack of choice between the two main parties. Yes I understand the “lesser of two evils” argument, and yes I was wrong, and yes I’m embarrassed by my naivety.
To be fair to me, my first opportunity to vote in a general election was 1997, and I soon learned what a big fucken mistake that was. I never voted again.
On June the 8th I will vote for the Labour Party again because I believe in Jeremy Corbyn, and I believe that the Labour Party can win this election. I believe that they are the only party that can save us from the mess we are in, and if they don’t win then I fear that a Tory-led government will not only exacerbate our current inequalities, but force a hard Brexit that will irreparably damage our country for generations to come.
There are four simple things we can do to make that happen.
1. Register to vote.
Encourage everyone you know to make sure that they are registered. If they are not interested then send them the link to this blog and I’ll try and persuade them. It takes 5 minutes to register. The cut off date is May 22nd, click here.
In 2015, almost 7.5 million eligible voters were not registered to vote, more than 2.4 million of them were 18-24 year-olds.
2. Vote (and don’t vote Tory obviously).
But that doesn’t necessarily mean voting for Labour. Voting for a party that stands no chance of beating the Tories in your constituency: an independent party, or a fascist party, or an independent fascist party, one of the funny parties (or that party set up by Geoff who drinks real-ale and has got strong opinions about parking) is not going to help Labour win. If you live in a constituency that Labour has no chance of winning, then ‘tactically voting’ against the Tories for a party that could beat them is the best possible way of helping Labour win the general election. We all know Geoff is only going to get 20 votes anyway, and lets face it, in the grand scheme of things, parking is going to be fairly low down his list of problems if the Tories stay in power and May and her mate Drumf start planning how much money they could make out of Word War III.
Have a look at this website to see if a ‘tactical vote’ is an option in your constituency.
Encourage everyone you know to vote. Especially encourage people in the 18-24 year-old age range, they’re the ones that are the most disenfranchised by the political system, but they’re also the ones who’ll be living with this result for a lot longer than the rest of us.
In 2015 the Tory party won an absolute majority with 36.9% of the vote, which only equated to to about 24% of the country. They got just less than 2 million more votes than Labour.
16 million people, didn’t vote in 2015, and only 43% of 18-24 year-olds voted.
3. Don’t spoil your ballot paper, this is officially registered as ‘voter intention uncertain’. Don’t draw a nob on it or write “Wankers One and All”. 100,000 of us did this in 2015. Though I’d say drawing a nob on your ballot paper does prove a certain degree of intention it still makes no difference to the overall result.
4. Be active, spread the message. Volunteer to support the Labour party, post leaflets, write blogs, share things (like this blog) on social media. Seek out alternative sources of information. Support Momentum a grassroots labour campaign movement.
If everyone follows these four simple instructions then the Labour party will win.
Well it’s a bit more complicated than that actually, but it’s all we can do. A Labour-supporting mate of mine reckons all this is pointless, and that the outcome of this election is dependent on a tiny minority of Tory voters in a small number of constituencies. If you can’t change their vote, then Labour loses. But there are more than 16 million people in the UK that didn’t vote in 2015 who can vote now, and can make a difference, a lot of them young and very disillusioned by, and apathetic towards the political system. If Labour can’t win an election by getting more votes than the Tories then what kind of a country are we living in?
If you read the mainstream press, (the majority of which is owned by a handful of right-wing billionaires, and is ranked as the 40th least fair press in the world) you may find yourself being asked a question like:
“What kind of a backwards-thinking idiot would want to vote for Labour?”
Which translates as: “Who would vote for a party that are claiming they can fix the NHS, enlighten the education system, eradicate child poverty, get rid of food banks, shelter the homeless, protect the elderly, end zero hours contracts, preserve the environment, remove tuition fees, sort out the Brexit mess, make the rich pay more taxes, and create a fairer system for all, so on and so forth blah, blah, blah?”
What kind of looney lefty would want all that?
Especially when the Tories keep insisting they’ve got it all in hand, but then decide to arrange a snap election (despite saying they never would) to give the voters the opportunity to show that they agree with them (in some sick Stockholm syndrome type way), that everything is fine and dandy. A bit like that time Dave did.
But everything isn’t fine and dandy, is it.
So we’re faced with another boring, confusing, and expensive election. One that takes politicians away from doing the jobs that they are paid to do so that they can fly around the country in helicopters, arranging photo shoots with bussed in supporters, visiting empty factories, and attending pretend children’s parties.
And despite the slogans that the political parties are using and have used over the years to get you to vote, or change your vote – they have all amounted to the same thing (until now, bear with me) which is the transferring of power from one hand to the other within the system.
This system is in place to protect the wealth of the richest few whilst sustaining the poverty of the poorest majority; regardless of who is in government. The system requires a powerful, wealthy and well-educated elite to run the country, and a poorer majority to keep it functioning.
The system works they tell us, it’s always worked, and there’s no other way to do things, so stop worrying about it. But they are wrong; it doesn’t work (for the majority of us) and there is another way.
We have become disenfranchised by the system, young people even more so. Why would anyone want to vote for change if it doesn’t actually mean any kind of actual change? This is one of the reasons why the system works so well for the few, and one of the reasons that there’s never another way ever offered to us.
In 2015 I described British Politics and the Palace of Westminster as a Rat-King. Meaning that it didn’t matter who you voted for, the parties were all so interconnected that nothing ever changed, the system stayed the same, just with a different rat at the front.
The people that are in power in this country are so far removed from the majority of their electorate that it’s no wonder that millions of people don’t bother voting. You don’t need to do much Googling to follow the trail of inherited money (via the Cayman Islands), and the fortune through birth that fills the seats of power in the houses of Lords and Commons.
But this year is different, and we are being offered a once in a generation opportunity to change the system and a real chance to escape from the Rat-Kings (or certainly give them a good kick up the arse). This year we have a real chance of taking some of the power away from the Eton educated elites and giving it back to the people, to create a fairer and more equal society for all.
And it started one day in 2015 when a scruffy socialist from Islington North rode his “Chairman Mao” bike into the Labour leadership campaign winning at odds of 200-1, and then winning it all over again in 2016 just for good measure.
Yes his speeches are a bit shouty, and he often looks like he’d much prefer to be stood on Oldham town hall steps in the rain with a megaphone. And yes he talks to the press like a teacher demanding, “who threw that?”. But Jeremy Corbyn is the first politician I have ever heard speak with any genuine sense of humanity about politics. He speaks in a language, and with a passion, that not only I can understand, but one that I wholeheartedly agree with. Millions of people are of the same opinion as me, and the numbers are growing daily. He isn’t part of the ‘system’ and he believes the system is broken, he believes he can fix it, and I believe in him. I believe he is our only hope in creating a fairer society for all in the UK.
Do you remember back in 2010 when Gideon increased VAT from 17.5% to 20%, and cut welfare spending at the same time, promising to sort the economy out within five years, then within seven years, and then ten, before he realising he couldn’t do it, so he quit to try his hand at something else?
Do you remember when he said, “We’re all in this together”?
In his leadership election speech Jeremy Corbyn talked about:
“Grotesque levels of inequality”.
This inequality is not accidental, it is manufactured and sustained deliberately.
We are not all in this together.
Wealth inequality in the UK continues to rise; the UK’s richest 1,000 families increased their wealth by 14% in the last year, and every year the gap between the rich and the poorer gets wider. The richest 10% of the UK own over half the country’s wealth, while the poorest 20% share only 0.8% of the country’s wealth between them. According to Oxfam:
“There are now more people living in poverty in the UK than there have been for almost 20 years and a million more than at the beginning of the decade.”
Do you remember when Gideon said, ”tough but fair action on debt was unavoidable” and then implemented cuts in inheritance tax, corporation tax, and capital gains tax that benefitted big corporations and the very rich, but still couldn’t balance the books?
The UK is the 5th richest country in the world, but we are not all in this together:
5 million children are classified as living in poverty.
Homelessness has risen by 54% since 2010.
A UN report said that Tory cuts to disability benefits are:
“Gravely and systematically violating human rights.”
We are so not all in this together.
Remember when Theresa May said, “Austerity was living within our means”?
Over half a million people a year are using Trussell Trust food banks (an increase of 2,792% since 2010) and over a half a million more are relying on other charitable food sources.
We are so absofuckinglutely not all in this together.
Jeremy Corbyn said:
“You may be born poor but you don’t have to stay poor. You don’t have to live without power and without hope. You don’t have to set limits on your talent and your ambition – or those of your children. You don’t have to accept prejudice and discrimination, or sickness or poverty, or destruction and war. You don’t have to be grateful to survive in a world made by others. No, you set the terms for the people in power over you, and you dismiss them when they fail you.”
Theresa May just keeps saying STRONG AND STABLE over and over again. STRONG AND STABLE policies, for a STRONG AND STABLE economy, for a STRONG AND STABLE Brexit. She talks as if Brexit was the only thing we should be worrying about.
How can you even begin to think about Brexit when you are sleeping rough, or your benefits have been sanctioned, or whilst you are queuing up at a food bank to try to live within your means?
She’s currently talking about another cut to the disability allowance and hitting the pensions pot, while lambasting Jeremy Corbyn for suggesting that we might be better off looking at raising funds from the other end of the rich list. You know, where there’s a bit more cash available.
Large sections of his own party have tried their hardest to undermine him – claiming him unelectable (and then electing him as leader twice), the biased press has ridiculed and lied about him at every opportunity. Because they are afraid of him and see him as a genuine threat that will upset their well-established and massively unequal system.
At times he’s seemed to disappear, and he was woefully lacking during Brexit, he is not infallible. But, he’s stayed true to his beliefs; he’s stayed true to his morals, and stayed true to his message of humanity. And I believe he is the only hope we have to change the system, get the country back to its feet after a decade of crippling austerity and begin to build towards a prosperous and more equal future.
“We will build a country for the many, not the few.”
So I say lets give him a chance to prove himself right. If he’s wrong, If I’m wrong and he fails us, then we should take his advice and dismiss him, but for fecks sake lets give him a chance to prove himself right first.
He deserves that, and so do we.
p.s. If you still don’t believe me, then maybe Jonathan Pie can convince you.
(Warning! Very not safe for work)
I believe Labour can win this election, but it won’t be easy. There are four simple things we can do to make sure that Labour beat the Tory party in the 2017 general election.
1 Register to vote. (Encourage others to do the same).
2. Don’t vote Tory. Vote tactically. Encourage others to do the same.
3. Don’t draw a nob on your ballot paper.
4. Be active, (share this blog) seek out information from new sources:
I believe Labour can win this election, but it won’t be easy. I you agree with me, then please share this blog.