In light of recent revelations from the EU about how easy it would be revoke Article 50 and cancel Brexit outright literally at any damn time, it just makes the Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn “Brexit Debate” idea even more incomprehensibly stupid.
By all means have the debate but at least include other political leaders who have views that aren’t stuck in “rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic” mode about it.
If this whole debate nonsense is truly about informing the public of our options and arguing the case for them there is literally no good reason to block out other politicians making the case either for a final referendum or just for cancelling Article 50 and not bothering with any of this any more.
We all know Theresa May is all gung-ho for precisely this exact Brexit and will refuse to entertain literally anything else as a possibility.
We all know Jeremy Corbyn is largely pro-Brexit but refuses to actually state what he wants it to look like outside of ‘not what the Tories think.’
Besides the issue is going to be decided in Parliament, not by the electorate, so why the fuck are they bothering with a televised debate put on in front of the nation when neither of them objectively gives a shit what the nation might want at this point?
And I’m still sat here trying to fathom how my staunchly anti-Brexit and pro-people’s vote friends are still somehow justifying themselves being staunchly pro-Corbyn when Corbyn is still proving himself to be staunchly pro-Brexit and anti-people’s vote.
I’m not saying I don’t want Corbyn to replace Theresa May as PM but for fuck’s sake how are some people still not acknowledging that he will never be on their side regarding Brexit because he’s an old-school Eurosceptic.
The longer this drags on the longer the love for Corbyn from some people looks less like a truly informed political approval and more like some kind of personality cult that can only end in either abject failure if he never becomes PM, or mass disillusionment if he does and proceeds to be nothing like what some people have convinced themselves he is.
… yeah my brief semi-hiatus from active political blogging has done nothing to make me less of a rambling loudmouth seemingly determined to annoy people with contrarianism.
Theresa May’s advisers have been briefing their chums in the press that Theresa May is considering a live TV debate with Jeremy Corbyn over her failing Brexit shambles.
Jeremy Corbyn’s team have already indicated that he’s up for it (because he’s rightly confident that he’d win easily in a situation where May doesn’t have all of her evasive non-answers written down for her).
Given that we all remember the way she spent the entire 2017 General Election hiding from TV debates (and any kind of unscripted circumstances whatever) it may seem surprising that she suddenly wants a live unscripted TV debate, but it’s actually extremely revealing.
Back in 2017 Theresa May was so desperate to avoid debating Corbyn that she spent the election hiding in meticulously maintained Tory “safe spaces” and even threw her hapless and recently-bereaved subordinate Amber Rudd into the line of fire because she was coming from an ‘everything to lose’ position.
The Tories had a vast lead in the polls and the overwhelming majority of the mainstream press were vehemently on her side, so why on earth would she have risked a humiliating live TV defeat in front of an audience of millions?
Of course Theresa May’s inner circle will have factored in the negative optics of Theresa May looking like a coward, but presumably they thought that they could deflect most of the damage with endless assertions of strength and stability, and they clearly massively underestimated the size of the negative social media reaction to her transparent cowardice.
They clearly screwed up, but the underlying reasoning for their screw-up was that they thought it didn’t serve her interests because she was in a comfortable ‘everything to lose’ scenario.
The reason Theresa May’s advisers have suddenly reversed position completely on the folly of allowing her into an unscripted debate situation is the dynamics have also completely reversed since then.
The result of May’s vanity election was the loss of her majority and the necessity of using £1 billion in public cash to bribe the DUP bigots into propping up her government. Now the DUP have turned on her out of fury at her woeful Brexit proposals, and she faces the almost-inevitable prospect of losing the upcoming parliamentary vote and finally getting ousted from power.
So her advisers are suddenly willing to take the massive and obvious gamble of allowing her into an unscripted debate scenario because she’s incompetently backed herself into this desperate ‘nothing to lose’ scenario.
Theresa May is drinking at the last chance saloon, and that her advisers actually think that allowing her into a live unscripted situation is their final option is an indicator of just how hopelessly and utterly desperate they’ve become.
A few months ago a despicably dishonest Independent article misrepresenting Jeremy Corbyn’s speech to the EFF (the British manufacturing lobby) went mega-viral on Twitter as tens of thousands of anti-Corbyn ranters gleefully spread it around because that pack of lies, distortions and ludicrously misrepresented selective quotations confirmed their biases.
Today Theresa May has given an utterly risible speech to the CBI (the British business lobby) in which she whitewashed the Tories’ ruinous track record in government, casually ignored her own appalling track record at the Home Office, and spread dog-whistle anti-European xenophobia in the hope of appealing to the fickle extreme-right ultranationalist blue-kip demographic who are apparently deserting her party in droves.
Theresa May whitewashed the devastating impact of ideologically driven Tory austerity dogma for the last eight years, she championed the tax-dodging, job-destroying Corporate behemoths like Amazon who are wrecking high streets up and down the country by using their artificial tax advantage to undercut tax-paying businesses, she praised the gig economy, she misrepresented the Tories’ despicable track record of imposing the longest sustained decline in workers wages since records began, and she openly bragged about cutting the deficit by 80% in 8 years when they had originally bragged that they’d have completely eliminated it in less than five years.
But the most despicable and duplicitous aspects of her speech came near the beginning where she whitewashed her disgraceful personal record at the Home Office, spread ludicrous fairy stories about the kind of immigration system the UK will supposedly have if her hard-right shambles of a Brixit deal somehow avoids failing at the first hurdle, and uttered a desperately cynical anti-European sound bite designed to whip up hatred against Europeans in general, and most specifically Europeans who have come to the UK under their European Freedom of Movement rights.
When Theresa May publicly accuses EU citizens who have come to live and work in the UK of “jumping the queue” she knows exactly what she’s doing. She’s deliberately appealing to the basest instincts of the extreme-right ultranationalist Blue-kip mob who were instrumental in allowing her and her horrible Tory mates to cling onto power by their fingertips in 2017.
Theresa May and her advisers know that the Blue-kippers are abandoning the Tory party in droves because Theresa May’s hard-right job-destroying power grab of a Brexit deal is nowhere near bonkers or destructive enough for their tastes, so she’s attempting to woo them back with crude hate-mongering caricatures of European migrants as a queue-jumping job-nicking threat (rather than people who are on average far more likely to be hard-working net contributors to the UK economy than the British-born)!
When she creates the narrative that “unskilled” EU citizens are unfairly queue-jumping ahead of skilled workers from elsewhere, she’s completely ignoring the fact that £millions worth of crops have already been rotting in the fields because of the hostile environment she’s created towards EU workers is driving them away before Brexit has even happened, and because neither British workers, nor skilled workers from outside the EU want to do that kind of back-breaking low paid seasonal work.
And by creating this crude ‘job-nicking’ caricature she’s ignoring the fact that aside from agriculture, other hugely significant sectors of the UK economy like manufacturing, health care, and the leisure industry rely heavily on EU workers too, meaning her Brexit shambles would be a disaster for these sectors too.
By painting EU workers as ‘queue-jumpers’ who have cheated their way into Britain, she’s once again distracting from her own appalling track record by inviting the blue-kip mob to focus their hate on the 3 million EU citizens living in Britain.
Additionally Theresa May has created a bizarre fantasy of what immigration would look like under her Brexit deal. She claims that “instead of a system based on where a person is from, we will have one that is built around the talents and skills a person has to offer”.
But her track record in the Home Office paints a very different picture. Take the way Theresa May made it her personal mission to chase foreign students out of Britain when all the economic and academic experts tried to warn her that it was a damaging mistake. Take the way she fixated on cutting immigration to below 100,000 regardless of the skills and talents of the people in question. Take the way she introduced draconian and discriminatory new immigration thresholds to block entry of non-EU spouses of British citizens regardless of their skills, talents, or earning potential. And take the way she massively expanded “Golden Visa” schemes to allow mega-rich immigrants (Russian oligarchs, corrupt Chinese officials, the families of African dictators, Middle Eastern oil barons) to buy British residency regardless of where they sourced the £millions they’ve been buying their way in with.
The only way anyone could possibly believe that Theresa May is motivated by a desire to make the UK immigration system fairer is by ignoring her hate-mongering rhetoric, and mindlessly taking her at her word that she wants to make the system fairer rather than examining her proven track record of making the UK immigration system way more unfair, corrupt, and illogical than it ever was before!
Of course they haven’t.
Many of them are too busy desperately trying to save Theresa May’s skin by attacking Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party to give the slightest damn about Theresa May’s dangerous hate-mongering rhetoric against the 3 million EU citizens in the UK, about her transparently ridiculous false promises of fairer immigration system, or about her brazen whitewashing of her own track record at the Home Office.
Another reminder that Jeremy Corbyn was the only Labour leadership candidate to vote against austerity and the Welfare Bill. 184 Blairite/Centrist/right-wing Labour MPs chose not to vote against the Tories’ cuts. These are the same people who have spent the majority of their time bemoaning the left-wing gaining power back within the Labour Party and continually undermining the twice democratically elected leader of opposition. They would rather continue Tory austerity than have a left-wing Labour government.
Austerity has always been a political choice that dehumanizes the poor and punishes them for their poverty. Until the Tory government is voted out and a transformative left-wing Labour government is elected, these policies will continue (and that is regardless of what happens with Brexit).