Preaching to the converted

The UK general election campaign is up and running again, after attention was focused on France over the weekend. I have just been watching Jeremy Corbyn giving a heartfelt speech on the BBC News. His rather stumbling style is quite endearing in many ways, and the absence of slick oration and stage-managed key points also refreshing to see.

He came up with some great ideas of course. A better NHS, a fairer society, the end of privatisation of industry and utilities, and increased taxation on the rich. Yesterday, his shadow chancellor made a speech about how Labour might pay for all their promises, despite pledging not to raise taxes on anyone earning Β£80,000 a year, or less. This is far higher than the average wage in this country of course. I suspect that the majority of the population would consider someone wih an income of Β£80,000 to be very well off indeed. So, Labour attempted to sweep in the affluent middle classes yesterday, then Corbyn returned to appeal to the poor and hard-working this morning.

Listening to the Labour leader today, I found myself liking most of what he had to say. He has in roots in the Socialist origins of that party, yet current trends have forced him to temper his one-time radical enthusiasm. Bold claims to build one million new houses are best taken with a pinch of salt though, as are some of his other rather fantastic promises. But he can afford to make such promises, as he knows he is unlikely to ever be in a position to have to deliver on them. He can boast of a minimum wage increase, huge additional investment into the NHS, and getting a Brexit deal that leaves the UK in a strong trading position. He might just as well say that he will pay for a holiday in Florida for every family in Britain, or give every pensioner free electricity, and a new car. He can say anything, because he will never have to prove the truth of his words.

Jeremy Corbyn enjoys huge support within his own party. He has won two leadership elections, and survived the backstabbers among his Labour colleagues in Westminster. But the hard truth is that the Labour Party has never been in a worse place, and never before faced a potential defeat of such proportions. OK, they will probably get my vote, but that will make little difference in a county dominated by the government party. UKIP may have also lost any influence in the country as a whole, but their votes will not be going to Labour. They will be bolstering Conservative majorities instead.

As Jeremy made his speech today, he must have been encouraged by the cheering from the audience, and the whoops of delight as he drove home each point. The applause was genuine, and the enthusiasm palpable. You might have believed that he could become a real leader, a man of substance.

But he was preaching to the converted.

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17 comments

  1. Heyjude

    I am desperately trying to ignore all the electioneering. If I have to hear one more time about Britain needing a strong leadership and a united government I may throw myself off the Tamar bridge! I cannot bring myself to vote Tory, never have, but any other vote will be wasted 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  2. fragglerocking

    We watched ITV news last night which was an outside broadcast from Hartlepool. As you know the North East has always been staunchly labour, but 2 of the old boys interviewed, life long labour supporters til now,are changing their votes to the Tory’s, Phil says they should hang their heads in shame, and I agree. WTF is going on in peoples heads??

    Liked by 2 people

    • beetleypete

      I cannot claim to know the thoughts of these old Labour turncoats, but I put it down to lots of things. Racism, media assaults on Corbyn, dislike of Diane Abbot, and a fear that anyone other than the Conservatives might try to overturn Brexit. I call it the ‘Club’ mentality. Golf Club, Social Club, Working Man’s Club, etc. They all sit around drinking and chatting, feeding off of each other’s hatred.
      Sad indeed. I may never see a Socialist government in my lifetime. There certainly hasn’t been one since I have been alive.
      Cheers, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. democratizemoney

    Interesting concept, that of holding winning candidates to account for what they say in the campaign. Over here a court is trying to decide if what the pestilence said about Muslims during the campaign was the rationale for his ban on Muslims coming to the US the first day he was in office. The pestilence and his minions claim no. that’s not why he signed the ban.
    Warmest regards, Theo

    Liked by 1 person

    • beetleypete

      At least none of our politicians have ever claimed that they would build a wall across Northern Ireland, or Scotland. I suppose we can be thankful for that. Then again…jobs for the building industry… πŸ™‚
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

    • beetleypete

      Good to see Le Pen didn’t get enough support. Not so sure about Macron though. He is something of a globalist, and a fan of big business. Better than the alternative, nonetheless.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Like

  4. Eddy Winko

    Its just a shame all those grass roots supporters aren’t on the ground convincing people to vote Labour, if each supporter could change the mind of a handful of people then they would be in for a fighting chance.
    I think it was FR or Phil who recently told me that the younger generation will be voting Labour, in fact get rid of the over 30’s (not sure of the age) and they would win, so there is some hope there I suppose.
    If I could vote I would vote Labour, now I’m off to convince my nephews on Facebook πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

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