Friday, December 20, 2019

Quotes of the day 20th December 2019

"Following last week’s remarkable election result, in which scores of working-class, Leave-backing Labour seats went Tory for the first time ever, anti-working-class bile was spewing from various prominent Labour supporters in the media. Labour activist and journalist Paul Mason wrote in the New Statesman that ‘at no point did Labour “desert” the working class. But a section of it deserted us last night, and I am not going to flinch from stating that in the places it did so there is now a toxic narrative of nativism and xenophobia’.

"Leave voters have been accused of racism and stupidity time and again since 2016. But up to now, Remainers would at least pretend, some of the time, that they were talking about middle-class Leavers in the Tory shires. But the defection of working-class Leavers to the Tories has brought to the surface the clear class-hatred element of all this. Months of left-Remainers spuriously suggesting that working-class people didn’t really back Brexit, or did so somewhat reticently, has now been blown out of the water. And Labourites’ and Remainers’ loathing of ordinary people is now on full show.

"Most troubling in all this is the way in which anti-working-class bigotry is now laundered through apparent anti-racism. Despite the clear decline in racism in recent decades, the cultural and political elites have carved out a narrative that it is worse than ever before, particularly among Those People who drive white vans, support Brexit and dislike Jeremy Corbyn. In doing so, alleged left-wingers have made class hatred respectable and anti-racist politics look cut-off and vaguely ridiculous. Which is bad news for both class politics and anti-racist politics.


"That the left needs to learn lessons from this historic defeat is obvious. What I’m wondering is if they are even capable of doing so. Many Labourites and liberals don’t only misunderstand working-class people — they genuinely despise them." 
(Tom Slater, extracts from an article in Spiked called "Woke class hatred.")

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