The BBC has reduced itself to little more than a right-wing megaphone for Ex-Tory Party Chairman Chris Patten. Rupert Murdoch’s SKY News isn’t much better. And the anonymous Thatcherite suits who now own Channel Four News have gotten into the habit of devoting endless publicity to two party leaders who do not have a prayer of becoming the next Prime Minister.
On the one hand, we have that pledge-breaking bampot, Nick Clegg. On the other hand, we have xenophobic flat-tax clown, Nigel Farage. What have the British voters done to deserve this?
Why can’t anti-capitalists get just a smidgen of publicity for our ideas? Why can’t we get our foot in the door of Britain’s so-called democratic debate? Well, maybe we can.
Bob pointed out, tellingly, that Ed Miliband’s Labour Party was now a mere pale shadow of the Tories and Lib Dems. All three of these parties are united on all the key issues of the day – including disenfranchising all English voters who reject their anti-democratic cartel on a shared currency with Scotland should we vote for independence. Bob Crow was preparing to stand in the European elections on the NO2EU ticket to break up this reactionary ‘consensus’.
Even without Bob Crow, NO2EU is offering socialists a democratic alternative. The capitalist parties are divided only on how to screw the majority on behalf of the tiny privileged elite who own the means of production, distribution and exchange: British, European or English bureaucrats and employers. The reality is they are all as bad as each other.
Nigel Farage is destined to pick up votes by feeding on the entirely legitimate discontent with Ed Miliband’s treachery. However, UKIP is a road to nowhere for Labour’s core vote. By contrast, Bob Crow’s party does offer workers an alternative.
Ken Loach and Salman Shaheen cannot possibly intend to play Pontius Pilate in the European elections. Just because Left Unity have not gotten their act together at this round of elections sufficiently to stand a single candidate, that is no excuse for their trying to stop Bob Crow’s supporters. That would constitute treachery in the face of our common enemy. It would be a slap in the face of all of us who are dedicated to genuine left unity.
The name NO2EU is misunderstood by some on the left. NO2EU poses a workers’ alternative to Nigel Farage’s xenophobes. It is not boycotting the parties of the European left any more than Ken Loach’s Left Unity is. How could it when it is itself standing in these elections?
Do Salman Shaheen and Ken Loach want the working class voters of Britain to have a say on their relationship with the European Union or not? Are they going to line up behind Ed Miliband’s insult to working class voters by denying them a say in a referendum, regardless of just how anti-democratic these bureaucrats make the European Union, regardless of how intense the assaults on workers rights become? Surely not. In that case, let us all agree on a referendum. And let us call for a vote for NO2EU, rather than the anti-working class xenophobes of Nigel Farage’s UKIP.
LBC, SKY News, BBC et al destroy every space for the real left to challenge the privatizing NATO-loving rats. That gives RT.COM a special role in British elections. It would be an atrocious insult to our cherished memories of both Tony Benn and Bob Crow if Left Unity helped the capitalists of UKIP in the coming elections, or Ed Miliband’s Judases.
In the process of comradely debate on Going Underground, socialists can be helped to make up their own minds as to whether or not they should simply wait five years for the next round of European election fought under proportional representation. My guess is that all those who want left unity want Left Unity to pin their colours to the mast, and call for a vote for NO2EU and for TUSC as well.
Salman Shaheen should join with Dave Nellist to ask for a LBC-type debate on Going Underground. Over to you, Salman.