It was with a heavy heart and a bit of sick in my throat that I watched the hopes of millions who wanted better, dashed against the Tory rocks of a deeply unfair and unrepresentative electoral system. This is a party that have convinced us that you can plug a £90bn deficit with £12bn worth of cuts to the welfare system that so many vulnerable people depend upon just to live, whilst barely touching tax exiles and non-doms who leave us with a £120bn hole in the treasury every year. This sounds ridiculous, but more people voted for it than any other party. Why?
I think the issue with yesterday’s election was a failure by Labour to realise that the default government in the UK is Tory. That is the benefit of the first past the post system. If you don’t vote, you get Tory. If you vote for anyone else but Labour, you’ll most likely get Tory. If you manage to elect someone that isn’t Labour, that is one less seat to oppose the Tories…. and if you leave yourself so open to attack with a limp, flaccid leadership in the face of a toxic pro-Tory press, people will vote Tory. The election wasn’t Cameron’s to win, it was everyone else’s to lose.
When people want ‘safe’, they go Tory. They know they stink, they know they are corrupt and they know the Tories will kick the poor, the disadvantaged and the non-conformists like they were mangy old dogs, but when you have a mortgage or a career, you put the idea of keeping those safe before the needs of others, and I can kind of understand it… I loathe the Tories with great venom, but I understand it. Yes, the system is shit, so if you want to be better than the Tories, you have to be A LOT BETTER than the Tories. Why would anyone risk what they have worked so hard for if they don’t think it will benefit a greater good? Labour need a strong leadership to inspire confidence… perhaps a feisty petite Scottish woman because that’s worked well elsewhere.
But here is the thing, the Tories have no moderating voice in their ear this time. If you are poor, disabled, unable to work, suffer from mental illness, an immigrant etc. life for you is about to get very, VERY hard, very, VERY quickly. But don’t hate the people who voted the Nasties in, and don’t hate the people who didn’t think voting was important (as tempting as it is). Be the loudest voice for change and electoral reform you can be, and make sure what the Tories do is visible to the world, and THEN we might be able to change it. Five more years of smug, conceited pricks (now uncorked) bullying and butchering anything that doesn’t make profit. Treat it like a zombie apocalypse. Fight! Fight until you die, then rise from the dead and fucking fight some more.
Get behind Labour. Organise pressure groups to let the current MPs know exactly what issues you want addressed and buoy them up to be the ‘Party of the People’, and not just ‘Not the Tories’.