I know everyone is very upset. Labour have betrayed the people etc etc etc ad infinitum. Here is what happened today, Labour maintained the same position they have had since the early nineties. In the late nineties they started the transformation of our benefits system, under the banner of asset based welfare.
In 2006 they were told it was unsustainable and effectively told that to continue this way would be throwing anyone who needed benefits in future under a bus and it has been at the core of their politics since, regardless. Exploitation of inequality for political gain to perpetuate the financialisation of our economy. The reshaping of our entire political economy to suit finance. Sold by their media culture.
It’s really difficult to accept that. Accepting that means accepting that our democracy has been broken for a very long time. That the nexus of media, finance and politics, has broken democracy and we didn’t notice. It’s very easy to stay in denial rather than face that.
Once you accept that Labour’s position is as it has always been, you have to quickly move on. Because then you have to start considering the bigger implications. This is frightening, so we revert back to ‘Labour will save us one day’.
When Owen Jones and Sunny Hundal and the Labour cyber guppies were sent out to make sure there was no discussion of austerity in the Labour focused anti-cuts movement, the reason they enjoyed that initial success was because when they said there is no alternative, it reassured people. So they didn’t have to move past Labour and ponder those very difficult questions. This is why that culture got away with abusing vulnerable people, gaslighting, defamation.
But once you let it go, once you accept that actually the system of think tanks, newspapers and dead political parties keeping democracy in the hands of finance, is what it is, once you have accepted that things were broken a long time ago, you can open up to the possibility of change.
Then you realise that the fact that you are now realising this, is a sign things ARE changing. That other people have realised this too. In fact, once you have left the mindset of ‘there is no alternative but Labour’, your mind opens to the reality of the situation.
That not only is change possible but it is happening and it is happening without permission of the political press. You don’t have to have conversation kept within those very very silly parameters. Once you accept you cannot change the Labour Party, you realise there has to be another way of changing democracy. Then you realise our democratic institutions are designed so you can change the face of democracy. And once you realise that, you feel very silly ever thinking Labour were a solution and are free to have your own conversation and really look at the big picture and what is wrong with it.
Then you watch other people catch up. Slowly but surely, they catch up. And you realise that the demonstration of that Labour culture desperately trying to hold onto the ability to dictate the parameters of debate, is useful to you. It is demonstrating how that was always done. How democracy was given to finance and kept in those hands. So it doesn’t have to be again.
Then all of a sudden the world looks very different, and you can see that change is not only likely, but it is possible and it is happening and that all you have to do is demand what you want, be the change you want, and really THAT is the kind of change that is on the table when there are no certainties any more. The things we do now, the things we fight for, will define the next century. Once you are past being limited to ‘I’d quite like the Labour Party to turn left’ you can really ponder what is possible, demand it, and achieve it. ”