We can't just wait for the government to implode. An insurgent Labour leadership at the head of the labour movement can bring real change now
There are some people in our society who the Tories never have and never will betray.
If you have money in an offshore tax haven, if you run a private health care provider, if you are an arms manufacturer, or the editor of a right-wing tabloid, you can be sure that this government will sacrifice itself rather than harm a hair on your head.
But if you are due Universal Credit, or are one of the millions watching the value of your wages slide month after month, have an elderly relative that needs social care, or need the NHS yourself, or can’t afford the roof over your head, then this government is betraying you every hour of every day.
These self-serving, incompetent, over-privileged, immoral, lying, money-grabbing, hypocrites are loyal to the one percent but treacherous to the ninety-nine percent. Patriotic only to the rich, the Tories are traitors to the people.
This government simply isn’t able to govern any longer.
Tory ministers are split and incompetent over Brexit; have no clue how to avert the looming worst-ever winter crisis the NHS has seen; will not and cannot root out tax avoidance; perpetrate but cannot stop sex abuse at the heart of government; penalise the poor without remorse through Universal Credit; and are incapable of solving the housing crisis.
And its foreign policy is no better and, arguably, more dangerous. ‘What Donald says’ isn’t a policy, it’s a policy vacuum. And if the hunt is on for foreign interference in domestic politics then a look in the White House would be more revealing than a look in the Kremlin.
After all, say what you like about Vladimir Putin (and there’s a great deal bad to say) but he isn’t forcing a stratospherically costly nuclear weapons programme on us as a price of ‘the special relationship’.
But we can’t just wait for this venal sack full of ferrets to claw each other into oblivion. The labour movement has to get rid of them now. And it can be done.
It is time for the Labour Party to step beyond the ‘government in waiting’ game. The temptation to just watch as the Tories implode is obvious, but wrong.
Working people are suffering now and with every week that passes with the Tories in office we suffer more.
The Labour Party needs to join in the extra-parliamentary mobilisation against the government because it is the only way to force an early election.
This isn’t something that should be left to the rank-and-file. Labour leaders need to be present on and speak at national protests. They need to make it known in advance that they will be there, and so help activists get the biggest turn out.
And on foreign policy Labour needs to abandon its pro-Trident, pro-NATO, pro-increasing defence spending bi-partisan approach.
Look how this approach disabled Labour in the crisis over Priti Patel’s secret meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanhayu. Labour’s line of attack was all about Patel breaking the ministerial code of conduct. Fair enough as far as it goes, but it misses the point that Patel had visited the illegally occupied Golan Heights in her one-woman mission to divert precious aid money for Gaza to the Israeli army.
The whole labour movement needs to step up several gears. This is not a run-of-the-mill political crisis.
It’s marvellous that Jeremy Corbyn did so well at the last election and that this has temporarily suppressed (but not removed) the threat of the Labour right. But if that makes the Labour leadership behave less like an insurgency and more like an institutional opposition, then the next election will be more difficult than many seem to imagine.
Working people have been betrayed by this government. They want and need radical solutions. Triangulation, even ‘left triangulation’, won’t work. Strikes, protests, and mass mobilisation are needed. Labour will be strengthened if it is part of that. If it is not it will weaken its position in the next election, and in the battles with the establishment which are likely to follow a Labour victory.
Get involved. Come to the Sack the Tories Protest November 21st
More articles from this author
- Is Britain breaking up? - video
- Covid and the campuses: can UCU turn anger into action?
- Existence is Resistance: A brief history of the Palestinian struggle - video
- Cycling in solidarity: The Big Ride For Palestine 2021
- The left, the right and the culture wars - video
- 15% is the demand: NHS pay is everyone’s fight - News from the Frontline
- The left after lockdown - video