Monday 26 September 2016

A Rocket Up The Racket

Even if the shale gas is really there, then the places that may or may not have it do not want to be fracked. It is not as if they need the money. Meanwhile, no one disputes that the coal is there. And the places that have it certainly do want it to be mined again, since we certainly do need the money, which we used to have.

John McDonnell announced policies that would already be taken as read in any Western country apart from this one and the only other one of which the media megaphones have ever heard. The principle of the Living Wage has already been conceded by the Government. The only question is as to the rate.

An industrial strategy is so controversial that there is already a Department of State with "Industrial Strategy" in its name. Expect Theresa May to pick up that idea of giving workers first refusal when a company is to be sold or wound up. It is very her. How can anyone not believe that tax-dodging companies ought to be ineligible for taxpayer-funded contracts?

And McDonnell brought out his inner Brexiteer when he promised "a renaissance of British manufacturing" after Brexit, while pledging to guarantee the funding currently provided by the EU, out of our own net contributions, to areas that largely voted Leave, anyway. He also called for access to the Single Market, but not for membership of it. "Brexit means Brexit," repeats May. "Brexit means this," replies McDonnell, challenging her to match it.

Some of us do not think that nuclear weapons and NATO membership were the only good things that the Attlee Government ever did. Indeed, some of us wonder why anyone, anywhere on the political spectrum, would wish to vote for a weapons system that by 2020 will be subject to either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. Or to vote for a military alliance that committed us to the defence of Erdogan's Turkey while presuming to demand two per cent of our GDP.

In this constituency, no one will have to vote for either of those things. From anywhere on the political spectrum, everyone here constituency will be able to vote for me instead.

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