Sunday, 14 May 2017

Letting the Tories get away with it

A government as divisive and as venal as May's is a damning prospect.   Based around the Tory entitlement to power, and with a compliant media doing its bidding, the election campaign is not an opportunity to challenge for the future direction of a damaged nation but a farrago of fears, lies and the progress to authoritarianism.  

The BBC, allegedly a public service broadcaster, repeats the lies, canards and fascist spin that emanate from Tory Central Office, with a token attempt at acknowledging opposition - while any statement of policy from opposition parties, or even, outside the Labour Party, an admission of their existence, is subject to the full ridicule of Tories who know that their venomous treachery would not stand up to rational scrutiny.

Last week, the Tories were handed yet another spinning victory when the Crown Prosecution Service "decided" that there was insufficient evidence to proceed with prosecutions of individual MPs and agents over the 2015 election.  This was given the status of the Tories being the victims of injustice, despite the conclusions and penalty levied by the Electoral Commission for the corporate manipulation and corruption of the expenses rules.  At best, the verdict would have been "not proven" in Scotland - not the exoneration that May and her scrofulous fools portrayed.

Labour's problem is not just Jeremy Corbyn.   It is the inherent tribalism of a party that still feels a sense of entitlement to govern in a bipolar system.  Despite the hammering that it took in 2015, and subsequent further unravelling, the stupidity of pretending that it can win in a geographically and culturally diverse system loaded against pluralism looks likely to hand May a landslide.  Complicit in the Brexit catastrophe, and the unnecessary election, Corbyn looks much more like Ramsay Macdonald than Clement Attlee.

Much of Labour's policy position is unobjectionable - apart from the "will of the people" monstrosity.  In a reality where there is no Tory majority, and where the fate of each British nation needs a clear articulation, the only opportunity is to demonstrate a willingness to collaborate to mitigate the undemocratic consequences of a broken system.  The Greens are the most advanced - and even the Liberal Democrats are showing signs of pragmatism rather than hubris - but this is not doffing the cap to Labour but a realistic acceptance of the need to compromise.

The existential crisis and the threat to representative government that the Tories represent is a defining moment.  Without opposition, and without a clear realisation that this requires compromise and dialogue, May's unmerited victory will be the precursor to a complete breakdown of coherence and challenge.  Before polling day, there needs at least to be a basic acceptance that to remove Tory hegemony will be a process that sweeps aside current affiliations and political strategies.

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