On 22nd May a soldier called Lee Rigby was murdered. I didn’t know Lee, I barely noted the murder apart from avoiding the murdertainment news and noticing that our political media pounced on it immediately. The Prime Minister immediately rebranding this criminal act as an act of terror, establishing an ‘other’ before the blood had dried on the pavement. Then a frenzy was manufactured.
Our political media had already crowned UKIP and given them enough publicity that they enjoyed electoral success that shocked them and left them ill prepared, and we were all told that this comedy bunch were where the extremism was coming from. UKIP give Labour something to shout at to pretend they still have values, and allow the Tories to pretend there are people out there more swivel eyed than their grassroots activists.
Ed Miliband repackaged the requirements of Blue Labour, as he must, and told us of our new national vision. The Tories and Labour, the political class of One Nation against women, those outside the labour market, the sick, the unemployed, immigrants, carers, and the working class, and anyone else identified, on behalf of the markets with as much debt as people can stand under. With a change in rhetoric so it sounds Beveridgian. Democracy unwound. Ed Balls vowed that Labour would continue the entirely voluntary austerity that has killed the economy, and would continue to scapegoat and demonise as the markets required, reclassifying pensioners as idle to achieve an unlikely welfare cap I was relieved to hear did not involve killing them off.
The left dutifully leapt on Lee Rigby’s murder, eager to assist in the manufacture of the narrative David Cameron and Ed Miliband required. Owen Jones front and centre glowing with the righteousness of entitlement, and the radical left finding it difficult to actually demonstrate a difference between themselves and the EDL. All wanting to crack heads in the name of a fantasy working class and perpetuation of their social scene. (The only real difference being the EDL and today’s radical left is that todays Oxbridge radical left are tomorrows Micheal Gove’s and Polly Toynbees. Practicing attacking working class people without accountability, for when they have a chance of real power. It won’t be the EDL on Question Time in 10 years!)
The EDL are a new development in the history of far right groups, because they get their rhetoric solely from mainstream politics and they have never seen anything but rejection from the British public. They lifted their rhetoric verbatim from a war on terror that is not allowed to end, and it was written by Labour. It is Maurice Glasman, banned from Stoke Newington Mosque, after trying to complete this feedback loop by incorporating the EDL into an ideological adjustment required so austerity could be sold as Blue(before he was dumped like a toxic turd when the Brevik Massacre made that politically dangerous alongside faux grieving).
This is how fascism is sold in a country that believes it is a democracy. UKIP and the EDL pose no risk to anyone but themselves, but we need something shiny to distract from the extremism of the centre, and as long as there are career opportunities, our political class will line up to sell it. Left and right playing their part. Every time the EDL are marched on from stage left, the chorus is one of bad grammar, poor clothing and disgust that they appear working class, their choice of online ‘activism'(the rest of us call it twitter and facebook) aligning them with a very lazy left’s chosen medium.
The austerity death toll rises. The extremism of the centre is now unmistakeable. A genuine manifestation of fascism that it had never occurred to me I would see in my lifetime, real fascism. With real effect. With no democratic escape, and delivered to us with media narratives kept tightly within the parameters acceptable to our sealed off left/right bubble of political press. Legal aid changes removing most of us from the possibility of justice ever acting as a check and balance. Only we can’t even describe it as fascism because the radical left need the word as an accessory to bully and shut down debate that threatens it.
Ed Miliband and our principled trade unions have had a get together, and the wider labour movement have decided that yes, austerity is fine if there is some political benefit that can be divvied up for ‘everyone’. As long as only the unemployed, women, and those currently being destroyed would be targetted. One Nation against all those whose hardship our Labour Movement have dined out on since 2010. One Nation with a financialised welfare system keeping anyone who may object under the cosh and away from justice. People’s Assemblies up and down the country hoping to keep that disenfranchisement concrete and provide a launchpad for new political careers.
As a demonstration of how a political class work together it wasn’t bad, it’s just a shame the cost is so high. That the Unions just signed their own death warrant is no consolation when the clouds are this dark. Through Prism we see how many of our beliefs about our freedom were naiive, and there is no shock as our eyes adjust to the environment we have realised we always knew we were in.