That’s the simple fact in the elections coming up, both local and UK wide. Vote Tory, and you vote for their policies. You may think Ruth Davidson is all jolly hockey sticks and not like other Tories, or that Theresa May is a ‘strong’ leader.or if you want to ‘send a message’ about a second independence referendum, or block a second EU referendum so voting Tory becomes an option then remember what you’re voting for.
You’re voting for the party of food banks. You’re voting for the party that cuts PIP payments. You’re voting for the party of the bedroom tax. For the party of austerity.For the party that’s driving people to kill themselves rather than live in a country where the government makes their lives hell.
That’s what you’re voting for. You’re voting for a party with no sense of human decency. Consider that in the local elections in May and in the general election. Do you really want to give Theresa May the mandate to run riot with worker’s and human rights?
So, a simple choice. Vote for a party who’ll beat a Tory candidate or for a Tory who’ll back people’s lives being made intolerable. Make your choice.
After writing this I thought things couldn’t get weirder or more scary. Then Theresa May calls a snap general election on the 8th of June and the arse falls out of any idea we might be hitting a phase of relative sanity.
Using the line The country is coming together but Westminster is not May obviously sees a chance based upon current polls to have the sort of majority that we’ve not seen since the Tony Blair years. May is essentially going to have to scrap the Fixed Terms Parliaments Act to hold this snap election which may well provide some more interesting snippets as although the Tories are putting on a united front, there’s a lot of Tories out there (Hi David Mundell!!) sitting on paper-thin majorities in areas that thanks to Brexit may well be facing unemployment in June.The Act was designed to stop PM’s doing just what May is doing which is hold an election when the polls are favourable.
Problem is polls can be read wrong. Take the Scottish independence referendum. David Cameron happily let the Scottish Government hold a referendum in 2014 the polls showed only around 20% support for independence. That changed over the campaign as more people became informed of the issues, so May’s taking a risk but this is a risk which if it pays off means she personally has an eye-watering majority (if the polls are accurate around 100) not to mention she intends to change the makeup of the Lords, while Brexit hands her the sort of power no Prime Minister should have.
So this is about Theresa May grabbing power. See all that bumf about ‘division’? That’s about creating a state where the opposition is muted and ineffective where it needs to be in Westminster. There’s also the matter of the Tory election fraud scandal which menaces the Tories and taints their 2015 victory, though as Michael Crick points out, this means the hard decisions are now in the hands of the CPS.
The question you have to ask yourself is what sort of future you want for yourself and for others? This is a general election where the future of the UK itself is up for grabs. If you want a future where Tory Prime Ministers have the sort of power where they can sail through whatever they want unopposed though Westminster then look to see where your vote belongs.In Scotland that means voting for the SNP, a party I reluctantly will give my vote to in June (I find their economic policies to be far too conservative) because their social policies are good and they’ll beat not just the Tories, but a hopeless broken Labour Party who’ve run up the white flag on Brexit.
Elsewhere in the UK its down to you to make the choice. I hope Corbyn’s smart and takes the offer of a progressive alliance Ed Milliband refused in 2015 but I fear the Labour Ultras won’t do that. I hope I’m proven wrong. Whatever you do make the right choice because we have a choice and if that choice is Tory (or UKIP) then we’re heading down the same path as Turkey, America, Russia and possibly France in having a hard authoritarian leader who stamps over human rights. Do we really want to be on the dark side in the years ahead?
At work today people had a meeting about a future meeting where the new management structure is to be rolled out including a new member of staff who will be responsible for corporate transparency. When I pointed out the Kafakaesque internal bureaucracy and the fact that if my employer actually wanted to be transparent then they wouldn’t roll these things out to a small clique of people interested in their own fiefdoms which means they make their jobs worthwhile, and therefore essential, even though really, they don’t do anything.
This is the phenomenon of ‘bullshit jobs’. Jobs created by companies that don’t actually do anything but add another lair of management, bureaucracy or general bullshit to the day-to-day operation of a business. These jobs often have no point or function but to give someone something to do that really isn’t worthwhile in any shape, form or function. So when this afternoon I saw an interview in Vice with David Graeber, an academic (and also an anarchist) and the author of the rather good The Democracy Project and the man that made the phrase ”bullshit jobs” one that lept into the public domain.
Graeber’s main point is ”that we’re trapped in jobs created by the ruling classes to feed into their debt extraction schemes”. Jobs are created so people can be fleeced for profit by employers or even higher up the food chain. It’s an idea I tend to agree with as people around me every day do jobs where they’re simply putting figures into spreadsheets nobody is going to look at but need to be done because that’s what’s done. If they stopped their ‘work’ for a day it’d mean very little as ultimately they can be easily replaced so people become interchangeable which means they lose self worth, and that means people live only for the few times they can cut loose or even attempt to be themselves. Few can articulate their problems because thanks to the daily grind, they’re more taken up by the daily struggle for survival.
Now people can do these jobs and work hard, but it’s ultimately worthless work that wouldn’t have made people gain a seat on the B Ark, and there’s the problem. People know either deep down that their job is worthless and bullshit, or they try to keep their feelings of pointlessness suppressed as otherwise they’d be reaching for the revolver. These aren’t teachers, nurses, scientists, doctors or anything that society needs or makes the world a better place, but these are jobs the private sector creates to make it seem like they’re creating employment, when in fact, they’re only helping people exist rather than live. It’s depressing but this is neoliberalism in action so we’re faced with a choice come the general election in May of supporting the neoliberal consensus or perhaps rocking the boat enough to perhaps start something new so that in a decade people can do jobs that aren’t just there so people can feel better not just about their jobs, but their entire lives.