Harry’s Last Stand Election Diary April 21, 2017

Election Diary April 21, 2017–04–21

This is going to be a strange and acrimonious election. It can’t be any other because there is no hyperbole in saying that this is a battle between a just and civil society or the dystopia created by Tory austerity and their hard Brexit.

Corbyn began his campaign well yesterday showing he can be both combative and compassionate. The problem is Corbyn is like a runner that starts the London Marathon two hours late. So the question is can he and Labour ever catch up. He was brilliant today reading story books to children and his enthusiasm around kids isn’t fake. He’s the real deal and that is what must be allowed to be seen by the public. Corbyn isn’t some radical leftist, he’s a middle of the road socialist. In fact in 1945, he would have be seen as the centre of Labour, not the hard left.

Labour has much to do in the next 7 weeks and there is something very pessimistic about so many sitting MPs deciding their time is done and choosing not to fight this campaign. Unfortunately, there are others, at least on social media that have the attitude “don’t let the door hit you on the way out.” It is not helpful and yes some were vocally opposed to Corbyn but many others had proven their mettle by being strong defenders of their constituents in parliament’s past.

Maybe, it’s my age but I prefer to see Labour evolve politically back to its roots of pragmatic socialism rather than through rabble rousing.

Corbyn is strong to come out with his desire to abolish zero hour contracts because they are exploitive. In fact they are a deadly cancer on the rights of workers. If they are allowed to continue they will destroy any hope that the younger generation has to get a fair shake in the job market.

Corbyn seems to be really in his element during this election campaign but then again he fought and soundly won two leadership races. It’s a pity that this couldn’t have been shown earlier. But there is hope for us as long as Labour stands united against the Tories. Also, Labour has to be merciless with any media outlet that tries to slag off Corbyn. He must dismiss them as liars, and hacks for their tax dodging billionaire masters. Labour also must break out of the social media bubble because it blinds us to the sheer indifference and resentment that many feel towards politics. It’s a mystery to me why people aren’t more political but we Brit’s never were very political. This has also become more so as trade unionism has declined. Again it baffles me how anyone who is a worker could think voting Tory is in their best interests.

I think as long as people are brought to the home truths that austerity has robbed them to pay for the tax avoidance of the 1% we have a chance.

It was interesting that Theresa May launched her election campaign in Bolton. She arrived there like a South American dictator in a helicopter. I am surprised her handlers weren’t tossing cartons of cigarettes to those pressed ganged to greet her. Today, she was in Maidenhead- a town I first saw during the Second World War while on leave. Coming from the north I thought it a delicate, posh town. I was almost afraid to touch anything fearing that I would break it because everything looked as beautiful and fragile as porcelain. I made my first attempt at punting in the river there and tipped my date into the drink.

It’s troubling that May won’t commit to the customary triple lock on pensions. Most pensioners are like me, individuals who worked all their lives but weren’t lucky enough to work for firms with indexed pension plans. She is going to throw old people under the bus to try to appeal to the struggling middle aged sandwich generation. Does she not remember the poverty of seniors before New Labour put an end to it? Does she even care?

I think the British voter must also accept that May is as prone to lies as Donald Trump. It’s why I don’t trust her one bit when she says, she will protect the foreign aid spending budget. This is a PM that wouldn’t even fulfill her promise on the Dub’s amendment to save child refugees. She doesn’t care how the poor and vulnerable live or die. Theresa May knows she will never meet them at the dinner parties she attends in the entitled homes of London’s wealthiest residents. Becoming PM for her was about ticking another box on her bucket list of entitlement.