A-Z of Theresa May: more weak and wobbly than strong and stable!

At the start of this election campaign, Theresa May boasted repeatedly that she was “strong and stable”. Soon, she became a laughing stock, because she was anything but strong and stable. In this piece, I bring you A-Z descriptions of Theresa May.

She introduced the Dementia Tax. She is awful and appalling.

She likes foxhunting – killing foxes for fun. She is backward and barbaric.

She wants to take away universal winter fuel allowance which may lead to thousands of deaths annually.  She is cruel and callous.

She said that her Dementia Tax U-turn changed nothing. She is dishonest and deceitful.

Thousands of disabled people have died after DWP declared them fit for work, which she supported. She is evil and egregious.

She was too scared to debate Jeremy Corbyn head to head. She is feeble and failing.

Her support of NHS cuts led to 30,000 deaths. She is ghastly and grim.

She supported the bedroom tax. She is hateful and horrible.

She has overseen the worst Tory election campaign ever. She is inept and incompetent.

She has already alienated other EU partners with her silly posturing. She is juvenile and jeopardy.

She lied about opposition parties sabotaging Brexit. She is a “Liar Liar”.

She wants to take away infants’ lunches. She is mean and malicious.

She introduced the rape clause for mothers claiming benefits for a third child. She is nasty and nefarious.

She calls herself a “bloody difficult woman”. She is obnoxious and offensive.

Again and again, she does not answer questions put to her. She is pathetic and pitiful.

Nurses are having to use foodbanks under her watch. She is reprehensible and repulsive.

She puts her own career before anything else. She is selfish and self-serving.

She sought to exploit the recent terror attack by making policy announcements when campaigning was supposed to be suspended. She is terrible and two-faced.

She told lies about not calling a snap election but called a vanity election in the end. She is untrustworthy and untruthful.

Her government has denied disability benefits to 165,000 people. She is vicious and vile.

She is a U-turn queen who flip flops and collapses at the first sign of gunfire. She is weak and wobbly.

As home secretary, she sent “go home vans” in areas with high ethnic minority population. She is xenophobic and a zealot.

I have made the above into a YouTube video.

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Tories’ desperate smears against Corbyn on security

On the eve of the election, the Tory attack dogs in the tabloids (the Sun, the Daily Mail and the Daily Express) have unleashed their most vicious smear campaign against Jeremy Corbyn yet. This reeks of utter desperation from a Tory election campaign that has been woeful and lamentable. According to the Tory leaning Spectator, it has been the worst Tory election campaign ever.

The Tories have been so inept and incompetent that they can’t even run a smear campaign against Corbyn properly. On the one hand, they call him weak on security for being a pacifist, because unlike May, he will not readily press the nuclear button killing hundreds of thousands of civilians in one go. And on the other hand, they say that he is a terrorist sympathiser. How can he be a pacifist who renounces violence and a terrorist sympathiser who promotes violence at the same time? The Tories are so desperate that they are not even making any sense.

The facts are as follows. Corbyn spent his entire political career promoting peace and bringing an end to violence around the world.  He voted against the Iraq war, UK’s intervention in Libya and bombing in Syria. Theresa May voted for all three. Corbyn has been proven to be on the right of history as these interventions in the Middle East have raised the terror threat both in the UK and abroad. The ex-MI5 boss, Baroness Manningham-Buller, for example, had said that the Iraq invasion substantially increased the terrorist threat to the UK.

A vote for Corbyn is a vote for peace and an end to foreign wars. A vote for May will be a threat to our safety and security at home and abroad.

At home, May cut police numbers and she was warned by the Police Federation that it will increase risks of terrorism at home. We saw in the wake of the Manchester terrorist attack that 1000 armed soldiers had to be deployed on our streets because of the police cuts. This was a failure of May when she was a home secretary. David Cameron’s former strategy chief put the blame for the recent terrorist attacks on May as he tweeted, “Theresa May responsible for security failures of London Bridge, Manchester, Westminster Bridge. Should be resigning not seeking re-election”.

Abroad, Theresa May is building a coalition of risk with Donald Trump. Like him, she sold weapons to Saudi Arabia which has been used to bomb Yemen. We saw after Trump was elected, May wasted no time to go over to the White House and hold Trump’s hand giving him her unconditional support. Trump has a dangerous and aggressive approach to foreign policy. He was on the brink of starting World War III with North Korea within months of being elected.

And earlier on in this election campaign, Boris Johnson indicated that May will support Donald Trump in a bombing campaign in the Middle East without parliamentary approval. In April, Trump dropped the biggest non-nuclear bomb on Afghanistan known as the mother of all bombs. Trump’s belligerent approach to foreign policy is making the world less safe every day. May is making a coalition of risk with him. Only a Labour government led by Corbyn provides any prospect of ending the endless cycle of foreign wars and terrorism.

I have made a YouTube video on this topic.


Corbyn the underdog can win – just like his beloved Arsenal did on Saturday

[Published on Labour List on 30 May 2017]

 

On Saturday [27 May 2017], Jeremy Corbyn was at Wembley stadium watching the FA Cup final as his beloved Arsenal took on Chelsea, who had just won the Premier League title with 18 points more than the Gunners.

Despite Arsenal’s status as the underdog, they were victorious on the day and carved out a convincing win. Probably referring to his own status as the “underdog”, Corbyn bantered with fellow Arsenal fan Robert Peston on Sunday remarking that “underdogs win!”.

Corbyn went into this election campaign as the ultimate “underdog”. His personal ratings compared to May were rock bottom with an IPSOS Mori survey showing the latter as the most popular leader of a political party in living memory. According to opinion polls, the Tories were as many as 24 points ahead of Labour and projected to win a 200-seat majority while Labour were facing a possible electoral wipe-out.

Fast forward a month and the political landscape has changed completely. Dubbed as “the worst Tory election campaign ever“, the Tories are in complete disarray with May’s personal ratings having taken a battering. Labour has closed the gap in the polls to five or six points and Corbyn’s personal ratings have risen. He is a far better campaigner than May. Despite the continued media onslaught against him from the right wing, people are warming to him. The more they see and hear from the man himself, the more they like him. His status as the “underdog” maybe a factor too.

There is something in the British psyche that we like to root for the underdog. The success of Anne Widdecombe – the right winger with two left feet – on Strictly Come Dancing is a classic example. Susan Boyle, an unemployed former cook, is another who took to the nation’s hearts on Britain’s Got Talent and her first album became the fastest selling debut album in British history.

In political terms, the greatest “underdog” of them all was Clement Attlee who was openly derided by those within the Labour Party, and outside it. Left-leaning publications such as the Tribune and New Statesman were also critical of him. Winston Churchill branded him as a “modest man who had much to be modest about”. However, Attlee went onto defy his critics winning the 1945 election and bringing in much needed social reforms to rebuild post-war Britain. A recent study at Leeds University ranked Attlee as the greatest post-war prime minister.

Corbyn has been likened to Attlee in the way that the former is also derided in the media. Like Attlee, Corbyn has put forward a series of bold pledges in his manifesto to transform Britain in the aftermath of the recent global economic downturn. The popularity of the leader today may not be truly reflected in opinion polls, because of “Shy corbynites” – those who may not admit to liking him given the public derision towards him, but who may vote for him in the privacy of the polling booth. A survey found that people overwhelmingly support policies in Labour manifesto. “Shy voters” is a recent phenomenon that is said to have delivered a victory for Trump in America and Brexit in the UK.

The latest narrowing in the polls between the Tories and Labour has been credited to women surging towards Corbyn. Also, some two million young people under the age of 35 registered to vote before the deadline on May 22. Labour has the strongest support amongst young voters. If 30 per cent more young people vote for Labour, the Tories could lose this election. Corbyn has won the backing of a number of high profile artists who are popular among young people. Young voters are also likely to be attracted to Corbyn’s “underdog” status.

Corbyn knows all about how to win from the position of an underdog. He was a 200-1 outsider to win the Labour leadership in 2015, but beat his rivals convincingly. With less than 10 days to go before the polling day, Corbyn is not only being viewed as a serious contender, he has sent the Tories into panic mode.

Back to the FA Cup final. The colours represented by the teams, Arsenal in red overcoming blue Chelsea, could be a good omen. If Corbyn carves out victory on June 8 it would be the greatest underdog success story yet.