Sunday, 20 November 2016

The Conservative party: the party that works for everyone. Am I missing something here?

Theresa May at the Conservative Party Conference. Source: Mirror
The Tory party, notoriously known for protecting the interests of the rich and privileged in society, have somehow managed to re brand themselves as the party for the working family.
The emergence of a new populist right needs to be treated with suspicion and caution.

Theresa May's record as Home Secretary is no secret - she accepted the imposition of austerity in a period where people were already suffering financially. The argument for austerity has now almost completely diminished along with the Conservative Party's 2020 surplass target. The draconian cuts made to several welfare budgets has contributed to the general malaise felt across the country and, most likely, contributed to the revolt against the establishment with the Brexit vote - where May supposedly supported Remain. Such harmful cuts were the biggest made to government spending since WW2. The closures of A&E departments in NHS hospitals, the battle against the potentially dangerous Junior Dr's contracts and the privatisation of various sectors of the NHS were all results of the Cameron government. May, as one of the leading members of his cabinet, sat idle to such policies making her complicit in the NHS' demise. May also witnessed the rise of food banks. It is a shocking reality that thousands of British people are unable to afford the basic necessity of food. Furthermore, the decrease in benefits and the availability of benefits have also affected those who now feel 'left behind' in society. It is evident that the entire Cameron government created policies that would affect the working class and so, May's declaration that the Conservative party will be for the working family seems paradoxical.
Food Banks.

Not only is May's past wholly representative of her alliance with the rich and privileged but also her decisions as PM seem to prioritise the rich. Her decision to take Britain toward a hard Brexit - where the working class will be hit most significantly - is incredibly ironic as she supposedly wants to champion their interests. The referendum was an advisory referendum but as May has continuously said "Brexit means Brexit" and, of course, there is an argument for this as the Leave campaign were victorious. However, the results were 52% supporting Leave and 48% supporting Remain and so, May's divisive conclusion to ignore the views of the 48% is incredibly undemocratic, especially as an unelected PM. Furthermore, the Leave campaign completely failed to present a coherent Brexit plan with any details of how the UK will function when leaving the EU. The arguments for and against staying in the single market or customs union were arguments that did not occur during the run-up to the 23rd June. Therefore, the drive toward a hard Brexit lacks any consent from the British people. It seems May is acting increasingly dictatorial and undemocratic despite the fact she supposedly proclaims that she is following the will of the British people.

Votes in EU Referendum. Source:
The upcoming Autumn Statement from the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, is set to announce more investment in the UK economy. The Conservative Party have effectively mirrored Labour's economic policy of more investment but have retained their economic reliability as they propose to invest a smaller amount. The Tory's message that they will govern for the working classes will most likely not align with the revelations from the Autumn Statement. We have suffered with austerity for 6 years and the investment he proposes will most probably not be sufficient to repair 6 years of damage.
Philip Hammond, Chancellor. Source:
We are all witnessing the impact of the Brexit vote with the falling value of the pound and increasing prices of petrol and various food items. It is these consequences that will effect the working families who are already suffering with the impact of austerity. Let's not be fooled with the propaganda released by the Conservative Party and the facade of their triumphant party conference. Theresa May is setting the scene for a turbulent route out of the EU and it is the working family that will suffer the most.
Theresa May's first speech as PM
Source: The Guardian

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