Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Baffling anti-Corbyn sentiment will leave us with another Tory government

Whatever you think about Jeremy Corbyn as a 'leader', or as a communicator, literally doesn't matter in the context of what we are up against in this country at the moment.

The first question is: What are people afraid of?

Governments are made up of many cabinet ministers, junior ministers and MPs and they are all supported by large numbers of advisors and other civil servants, so even if you believe that Jeremy Corbyn is not tough enough or not a good enough communicator to be Prime Minister, does it really matter? The people around him will do much of the work they feel he is not so strong at. Look at John Major: was he tough? Is Theresa May a good communicator? But apparently they are both acceptable Prime Ministers, whereas Corbyn is not.

The second question is: What about the policies?

So let's pretend that none of the anti-Corbyn sentiment is down to the media (as we know, 80% of UK media is owned by 5 billionaires) being fearful of a socialist government who might force them to pay their share of tax. Let's pretend he really is a weak leader and a poor communicator, and anything else he's been accused of being. Is that still worse that the alternatives? I cannot fathom why anyone other than the very rich, or the racist and stupid, would believe it is.

Let's look our options:

Bless the Greens, with their solid socialist policies and caring for the environment - but they're just not in contention. And bless UKIP, with their racism, xenophobia, homophobia and all sorts of other horrid characteristics but a) they got what they wanted, so are a one-policy party whose sole policy is no longer an issue, and b) the Tories have stolen their racism, xenophobia and quote possibly other horrid characteristics too.

So UK-wide, we just have the Tories, Labour and the Lib Dems.

Tory policies:
A hard brexit and quite possibly - once their hard-bargaining fails - the UK as a tax haven
Tearing up our human rights
Less money for and more private profit from the NHS
Fewer accident and emergency centres
Fewer maternity units
Less money for state schools
More grammar schools to help wealthier children get further ahead
More free schools to waste money where some overly-confident person feels they can do better than than the local authority
Continued austerity for local councils (particularly in poorer areas)  despite their claims the economy is recovering
Lower taxes for the rich
Higher taxes on the poor (VAT, income tax and national insurance could all rise)
Less money for the sick and disabled
No affordable housing
Crushing the Trade Unions who fight for workers' rights
No controls on low pay and insecure work
Ever-increasing homelessness*
More foodbanks*
Increasing pressure on charities*
Electoral fraud*

*I know these aren't actual policies but they are all the result of Tory election campaigns.

Having listed these things, of course, we might get completely different policies because their manifestos aren't worth the paper they're written on.

Labour policies:
A Brexit deal that works for the majority, not just the richest few
A £10 living wage for over 18s
Repeal of nasty policies including:
The Trade Union legislation
The bedroom tax
The NHS white paper
Halt the NHS private tendering
Stop the building of free schools
Add VAT to private school fees
A ban on exploitative zero-hours contracts
Reversing the corporation tax cut
Increasing income tax on the highest earners
An increase in the carers' allowance
Renationalising the railways
Building 200,000 homes per year
4 new national bank holidays
Closing deals between HMRC and huge corporations to make sure they pay their tax
Eradicate gender pay gap

Lib Dem policies:
Ignore the result of the referendum and hold it again.

So, come on, even if you hate Jeremy Corbyn (and I don't know why anyone would: he seems like a decent, principled guy), surely unless you're very rich or very stupid, you must vote Labour?