I met Scott Halley on my way up Singers Road. I assumed he’d been to the polling station. But he told me he didn’t bother. I know a lot of people that don’t bother. I can’t say I blame them. We live in a more-it-tocracy. The more you have the more you expect and the more you get, whether it’s wealth, jobs, health, or education. For the poor politics is something done to you. When you expect nothing and get nothing there are no surprises. That’s what governments do, give you less and less and expect you to stretch it more and more. More-it-tocracy is the politics of the rich.
The big losers in the election were the Labour Party. Alex Salmond called their bluff saying when you make an ally of the Tory Party, as they did in the referendum, and wear the same clothes, people often find it difficult to tell them apart. Ask Clegg and the Liberal Party. The truth is, apart from Trident, there’s not a lot of difference between SNP policies and New Labours. The big difference is SNP haven’t betrayed us – yet, because they haven’t been in the position to do so. We expect the Tory party to do what they do, give money to the rich, take money from the poor, dismantle the welfare state. It’s a tick list and they’re working their way down it.
As Neil Kinnock said of Thatcherism before losing the election to John Major: ‘I warn you not to be ordinary; I warn you not to be young; I warn you not to fall ill; I warn you not to get old’.
Labours biggest fault (well apart from making an ally of David Cameron) was not challenging the Tory lies about the need to bring down the deficit. Historically money at practically zero percent interest has never been so cheap. Apple, by share price and profits, one of the most successful company in corporate history has debt because it’s cheaper to borrow and spend on physical and social capital than just spend. It’s called investing in the future. That well known socialist institution The International Monetary Fund said much the same thing.
Why did we believe this great lie? Well for one thing the 2008 crash happened on Labour’s watch. And although they made noises about what the Tory cuts were doing to society it was too little and too late. Haunted by a past defeat to John Major, when most electoral polls put Labour ahead, the party blamed the electorate for not being able to stomach what was then a modest increase in taxation. The electoral success of Blair and Brown in agreeing to Tory fiscal constraints before being elected was a straitjacket Ed Miliband wore with pride. He was even pictured with it written in stone. They should bury him under it. Labour like the Liberal Party is finished. It’s the equivalent of the Berlin Wall falling. The choices in England are Conservative or Tory? Tory or Conservative? With less than twenty percent of the popular vote they lord it over the United Kingdom.
The Scottish National Party for whom I voted with fifty-two percent of the popular vote in Scotland and 56 of 59 seats is the winner. When Osborne dismantles the welfare state and hollows out the rights of workers and reduces those on benefits to rations and foodbanks that no modern European country, or its citizens, would find tolerable, Salmond can smugly say I told you so. But he can do nothing about it. Win win for him and SNP. Lose, lose for those on less than £100 000 a year.
History is when we’re doomed to make the same mistakes. After the Scottish referendum was lost in 1979 Labour were called the ‘feeble fifty’ because over fifty Labour Members of Parliament had Scottish seats but they could do nothing to halt Thatcherism. SNP MPs mirror that reality.
The big hope is when Cameron holds a referendum over Britain leaving the EEC. England may well vote yes. Scotland will vote no. We could have a constitutional crisis. I’m sorry to say I was right about the Tory’s winning this election, but less sorry about predicting SNP sweeping Labour aside in Scotland. They got what they deserve. The problem is the Conservatives never seem to get what they deserve. Heads they win. Tails you lose. The games rigged and the poor man is always the loser. Scott Halley has a point. There’s no point in politics. I’m moving my assets to Switzerland where they’ll properly appreciate and I may follow on later.