Thought police

The thought police are watching you

Tomorrow we face a crisis election

The Tories want a massive majority to impose a Brexit fashioned to suit the corporations and the financial markets – a low wage, flexible labour force to compete with India, China and Pacific Rim economies.

To achieve this they need to silence dissent and opposition to their policies.

May wants to hunt down people who hold unspoken beliefs. This could make suspects thoughts guilty of “thought-crime”. An authoritarian state under May would criminalise and pursue not only would-be jihadists but political opponents too. Her threat to rip up human rights laws will affect peaceful opponents of Toryism as well as actual terrorists.

May proposes a new kind of Bonapartist rule, outside of Parliament and the cabinet, in tandem with the unaccountable intelligence services, paramilitary anti-terror squads and fixers within the state. This would rely on support from the most reactionary social forces.

It would mean rule by decree in effect, taking its cue from “lawless president” Trump’s trampling on the very notion of an independent legal system.

Corbyn offers an alternative.

He opposes the jingoist and racist anti-immigrant rhetoric so beloved of UKIP, the Tories and their mouthpieces in The Mail, The Express and The Sun. He and his team:

  • • reject Tory knee-jerk “lock-em-up for good” reactions to terror attacks
  • • oppose the demonisation of Muslims and Islam as a religion
  • • oppose military invasions of sovereign states
  • • seek to tackle inequality and poverty by taxing the super-rich
  • • favour workers’ rights to decent pay and conditions
  • • bring essential public services back into public ownership
  • • restore free access to higher education
  • • increase badly needed resources to the NHS and schools.

Despite these progressive ideas, Corbyn is still dependent on a state hostile to his politics because it is there to serve the interests of capitalism. A Corbyn victory would bring a reaction from the state and the markets as we warned last week. There will be a reaction from the right wing of the Parliamentary Labour Party who have been briefing against Corbyn throughout the election period.

We must not rule out the possibility of sections of the PLP rushing to prop up a Tory government weakened as a result of tomorrow’s poll. The election is one of the few democratic elements of our political system. But underneath the campaign lie distinctly undemocratic political and economic structures.

Structures in which the majority of the media – owned by corporate capitalist oligarchs – can spread blatant lies and disinformation about Corbyn and other people.

It is a system where the rich and powerful call the shots, where the corporations legitimately avoid paying their tax liabilities and where the markets can make or break a government. This is as far from a real democracy as you can imagine. It will be made much worse if May is returned to office.

What needs to be done?

Vote for Corbyn even if your local Labour candidate is someone who has hounded the party leader since day one. This is even true in Scotland, where Labour councils are ruthlessly carrying out cuts, including sacking workers and privatising services and joining forces with the Tories to defend an outdated Union against calls for independence. That doesn’t alter the fact that a Corbyn government would be better for Scotland than a Tory government.

But prepare to defend a Corbyn government with popular assemblies and demonstrations and strikes. Speed up the proposal for a convention on the constitution to address the central questions of power and democracy.

The Real Democracy Movement aims to make the case for a democratic revolution to transfer power to the 99% and make a success of the social movement that has come into being to propel him into the leadership and carry him through the election campaign.  Let’s seize the moment to take it forward together.

Voting Labour’s a tough call for Scots, but one we need to make