Written by Marina Lademacher
Jeremy Corbyn. Those two words are guaranteed to make you feel something. Maybe you hate him, maybe you love him. Nonetheless, one has to at least respect the man’s integrity. This election campaign was meant to be the Tories for the taking; only a few months ago people were talking about the ‘end of the Labour party.’ Regardless of whether he secures a majority tomorrow,
Corbyn’s position as leader has been strengthened whilst May’s is hanging on a thread. Oh, how the media underestimated Jezza and his message of hope! But at least they’ve given him a fair chance this election, and look at the outcome. As for Theresa May and her uninspiring, cowardly campaign; the more people began to see of her, the more aversion grew. It’s all gone Conservatits-up.
Yet, what’s so unique and important about this election is that we face the starkest choice for decades. Ultimately, how you vote tomorrow indicates what sort of society you want to live in.
May’s version of society is consumed by pessimism: worse still it takes a sledgehammer at the social fabric and moral heart of Britain. True, Corbyn’s failure to expose and oppose the Tories sufficiently prior to the election was immensely frustrating for his supporters. But he’s shown himself to be man of proposition, not soundbites or superficial attacks, producing an utterly inspiring and coherent political programme. And it at least attempts to be fully costed, unlike the Tory manifesto which offers no costings, and which the Institute for Fiscal Studies say will lead schools to face the worse cuts since the 1970s while the NHS receives none of the funding it so desperately needs. Not to mention, her proposed £12 billion cut to benefits are expected to send a million more children into poverty.
On the other hand, if I had a penny for every time May even answered a question directly, I still wouldn’t be able to buy a Freddo.
If she’s too scared to debate leaders of other parties, how can she possibly be suited to debating against the big beasts of Europe over Brexit? The idea that the Tories (particularly the unholy trinity of Boris, David Davis and Liam Fox) with their relentless attacks on the Europe would be better received at the negotiating table than Labour falls short of the reality. Uncompromising inflexibility and a narrow circle of decision making will not lead to a strong and stable outcome for Britain. While May has given no real indication of her Brexit ‘plan’, what she has told us is that she’d be happy to exit with no deal. May does not listen to the people, but the right-wing fringes of her party. Her peddling of lies through Brexit and beyond suggests she doesn’t like the people much, either. Heck perhaps she even lied about the reason for calling the election. An MP from Rainham has argued that distracting the public from the Tory expenses fraud investigations is the real reason.
On the contrary, since becoming leader of the opposition Jeremy has put up with incessant media attacks and sabotages from within Labour. And he’s soldiered on because he was democratically elected by Labour members, and with an even bigger second mandate. He’s invigorated people to come out of political apathy and into democratic engagement. The Tories on the other hand, cry wolf during crisis. Cameron and his toes fled once having realised the damage he landed us in by calling a Brexit referendum purely to settle a decades old Tory party dispute. May has the nerve to call an election but not the guts to turn up to debates or interviews. Any suggestion that May cares about ordinary folk is farcical. If she did, she’d tell us why and prove it.
Jeremy Corbyn on the other hand, is a real populist. Policy after policy of the Labour manifesto chides with what the people want. Perhaps we may never see another Labour leader so removed from the Westminster bubble and at home with the people, tempted not once by the superficial luxuries so many MPs soak at the taxpayer’s expense. Yes, Corbyn would clamp down on the superrich and tax-avoidance, but for too long the 1% have remained unaccountable, sometimes contributing nothing yet feeling entitled to everything. To those who argue “oh but companies would just leave”, that reasoning is far truer if May takes us out of the EU single market and we’re faced with high tariffs. In fact, Corbyn’s promised rise in corporation tax is lower than what it was in 2010, and still lower than the average rate in Europe and the OECD. Yes, some taxes may rise a bit, but for once we’d feel the rewards as our society improves and becomes a better place to live in. Give it a couple years and the Tories may even be stealing his tax policies.
So, it’s no real wonder that Jeremy is so feared by the elites. Or that they resort to calling him a terrorist sympathiser because the very idea of losing a grip on power (or money) has the upper echelons of society shaking with fear?
If Brexit really was so important to May, wouldn’t the past few months have been better spent working on the way forward rather than absolving her entire time to the election campaign she promised she wouldn’t call? If she really was a strong woman, she would speak out against Donald Trump when he attacks the London mayor and pulls out of the greatest climate change agreement of the century, rather than embarrassing Britain into subservience once more just like Tony Blair. She does not care about climate change. And, if she really cared about dealing with terrorism, why would she have voted against Anti-Terror laws 49 times between 2001-2010, and taken bite after bite into security services budgets and police personnel? She’s sycophantic towards the Daily Mail and Saudi Arabia, squelching the publication of a report on the foreign funding of UK jihadi groups. Even her campaign slogan is a lie.
But the fact is that the Tories record in power, and her record as Home Secretary and Prime Minister, speaks more truth than May has in months. Police: slashed. Healthcare: underfunded and on the brink of being carved up by private American firms. Schools: under-everything, and unable to escape the vicious educational inequality that unfairly determines a child’s life from the age of 5 based on their parent’s income. Why is it that a country so steeped in history and patriotism, that is supposedly ready to embark on an isolationism, is only the 19th happiest country in the world and boasts one of the most unequal education systems in the world? Virtually every European country is happier than us.
May heartlessly told the underpaid nurse “there is no magic money tree”. Perhaps her husband and his profiteering from tax avoiding firms would disagree. But the reality is that there is money in this country, and plenty of it. However too much of it has been in too few hands, for too long: nothing has been fed into improving the state of this country. We have been lied to again and again and the Tories take us voters for fools that can be brainwashed so long as strong and stable is repeated enough.
There are only so many pinnacles of our everyday British life that the Tories can dig away at before they must finally be held accountable. Only so many lives they can worsen before eventually everyone is a victim of Tory austerity. What’s the point of reducing the deficit or fixations on GDP figures if everyone’s day to day lives deteriorate?
As much as she may claim that only the Conservatives can be trusted with your future, do not believe the lies. The only things they can be trusted with are depressing our livelihoods and future prospects, disabling Brits from realising opportunities. We need integrity and courage more than ever before- not a Prime Minister with no evidence of a moral core. Those who love Britain and vote for May must do so knowing the consequences to our once great, Blighty.
We do not need to have one of the unhappiest and divided countries in the world. A vote for Corbyn and the Labour party is the ONLY vote that can guarantee positive change.