The bit about truth and belief:
Ah Danny and Paul, here lies the problem. Elections are not about truth. They never have been. Elections are about what you can get enough people to believe enough. And as you both know, “A lie told 1,000 times becomes the truth.”
So, I’d like to politely challenge some of the beliefs in this thread and elsewhere on social media. For each challenge below, I will submit evidence and indicate where there is also challenge to that evidence. If you would like to persist with your beliefs because they make you feel better, that’s fine.
But at least I tried.
- Uncontrollable and uncontrolled immigration is not and has never been the problem
- Labour didn’t break the economy and the Tories haven’t fixed it
- The Tories' election promises are as financially unreliable as Labour’s
- Brexit did not receive the biggest mandate in UK electoral history
- Brexit is not even in the top 5 problems currently facing the UK
The evidence bit
- Uncontrolled immigration is not and never has been the problem
- Research commissioned by the current government demonstrated that EU migrants are net contributors to the UK and they contribute more to our economy per head than native UK citizens
- So they aren’t coming over here stealing our jobs and services they are coming over here and propping up our economy, paying our taxes and keeping us alive as anyone who works in the NHS knows (where 1 in 5 doctors come from outside the UK – although I accept that other sources cite this as lower)
- The idea that EU migration is uncontrollable is a myth. The UK already has the power to repatriate EU nationals if they don’t find work within 3 months. It doesn’t use this power because it knows a) and b) above and also because it would cost too much to implement
- Despite having this power, the current government and its coalition predecessor have done nothing to limit immigration and net migration has risen.
- If you follow the evidence above you should be asking yourself why. The simple answer is that EU and the perception of uncontrolled immigration was a convenient stooge on which to blame all the ills in society
- This is not the place to explore the causes of the 2008-9 financial collapse many whole books have been written on the subject
- But I think it is safe to say that the Brown-Obama approach of Quantitative Easing to shore up Western capitalism averted a significantly greater disaster
- Labour handed a net debt burden of 63% to the Tory-Lib Dem government in 2010 (it having risen 14 points from 49% that year)
- Despite professing a preference for austerity the Tories have taken net debt to 82% (although it has reduced slightly from its high of 84%)
- And yet we still talk about the memo Liam Byrne left at the treasury saying there is no money left because it plays to our beliefs
- Most people, even die hard Momentum members, will realise that John McDonnell’s £400bn spending plans represent the “moon on a stick’ to get you to vote Labour
- But even though his rationale that borrowing that much money to spend in order to grow the economy sounds like going on a credit card binge and expecting it to increase your salary. There is significant evidence that public sector borrowing for infrastructure investment does promote GDP growth
- At the same time Sajid Javid has laid out plans for £300bn but his sums are as creative as McDonnell’s economics is optimistic. He is not spending anywhere near that much as he has compounded multiple years. Moreover, the promised education spending is going mostly to Tory marginal seats and not to the most disadvantaged communities
- Bluntly they are as bad as each other
- I am so fed up of shameless will-to-power morons like Boris and Jacob parroting the, “biggest mandate in UK history” in their, “will of the people” dog-whistling
- Yes 17.4m people voted to leave the UK in the 2016 referendum
- But the turnout was only 72.2%
- Very interestingly, if you look at the voter turnout over the last hundred years, you will see that every single post war election in the 20th century bar two had a higher turnout
- And hence a bigger mandate than Brexit (a larger percentage of the UK electorate voted for John Major for Christ’s sake)
- Equally interestingly, voter turnout has collapsed in the 21st century and it is this disenfranchisement that is behind Brexit and our current troubles
- It is just an argument that allows a very small political group to draw a different dividing line through the electorate to increase its chance of obtaining power from a minority position
- You must know that Boris doesn’t actually believe in Brexit – it’s just his way of obtaining and retaining the keys to No. 10
- If you don’t, just ask yourself the following questions:
- Is Brexit more important than the social care crisis in our country
- Is Brexit more important than rebalancing the NHS for the 21st century?
- Is Brexit more important than the global climate emergency?
- Is Brexit more important than rescuing our education system from a decade of neglect?
- Is Brexit more important than fixing the criminal justice system?
Because you know that it isn’t. And you know that Brexit has nothing to do with those problems whatsoever. It’s just because you voted for it and you think you should get it. All the rest is noise.
Brexit is simply not important.
But this election is... and I’m buggered if I know who I’m voting for.