It’s reported that former journalist turned Labour MP Gloria de Piero has been trying to understand why so many people dislike politicians (The Guardian, 1 January 2013). She focuses predicably on issues around the MP expenses scandal and the boorish behaviour on show at prime ministers’ questions.
This is revealing in what it doesn’t say. The elephant in the room is, of course, the commitment by all three main parties to neoliberalism, a political ideology which, by definition, favours big business and the super-rich over ordinary people. This inevitably encourages apathy and disengagement. New Labour managerialism and its commitment to a slightly ‘gentler’ form of austerity is no solution. Anti-politics is not inevitable and people need to believe that they can fight for a better world.
Let’s hope that 2013 sees a step-change in the fightback against this vicious, cynical government and the promotion of a genuine socialist response by Labour to the class war that finance capitalism is waging against us.