Warning: this piece is biased. This is how I see Britain now. Other views are available, but this is mine.
We are about to leave the European Union. Very good move in my opinion. We need to leave behind a crooked undemocratic institution with a failing currency. But, granted, there is bound to be some turbulence and period of uncertainty which temporarily affects the financial markets.
Our Prime Minister, Theresa May, told Britain that we needed a period of calm and stability. We do. She had a substantial majority in the House of Commons and so would be able to push through her agenda. So what did she do? She called a general election, hoping to capitalise on the supposed unelectabilty of Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour Party.
A word about party names. “Conservative ” in Britain does not have the same connotations as in the US, and is not nearly as far right. It was the Conservative Party who legalised same sex marriage and is, like all major parties, pro choice re abortion. Like your GOP, they are for small government, minimal interference, but this is underpinned by a welfare state, especially our National Health service, free at the point of delivery.
Similarly, Labour no longer represents just workers, and although social justice and equality is a higher priority, the party recognises the need for a strong economy, but it would be fair to say that they are more concerned with social and ethnic inequality than other parties.
You might think the two parties are very similar, and in many was they were, both occupying the centre ground. I have affiliation to neither party and have voted both ways in the past. Both parties have produced excellent leaders and legislation.
Enter Jeremy Corbyn, elected as far left leader of the Labour Party under a new constitution. Mr Corbyn was at odds with most of his parliamentary party due his well known, long held beliefs on unilateral nuclear disarmament, his desire to return assets into state control, his support for state requisition of unoccupied property to be handed to the poor, his links to multiple terror organisations such as Hamas, Hezbollah and the IRA.
If you think I don’t much care for Mr Corbyn, you’d be right.
Anyway, Theresa May called this opportunistic snap election in order to wipe the floor with Corbyn and have even greater control of the Commons. Except it didn’t really happen like that. The Conservatives ran a disastrous campaign, negative and dismal. May was robotic and lacking in charisma. Corbyn, on the other hand, was energetic, credible, and appealed to first time voters with the promise of no University tuition fees, and a new Eldorado of social justice. Corbyn was rebranded as a player in the peace movement in Northern Ireland, a man of the people bordering on messianic.
Thanks to a totally unnecessary election, we have ended up with a hung parliament, where the conservatives are the largest party, but have no overall majority, Corbyn having, against all expectations, increased the Labour vote, with a manifesto he could never honour.
If this were not enough, during and just after the election, Britain has been rocked by three major catastrophes- an atrocious terrorist attack in Manchester, another horrendous one in London, and then the heartbreaking Grenfell tower fire which so far has claimed 79 lives and will rise.
Theresa May did not respond well. She is by nature awkward and emotionally unintelligent. She did not go into the streets and mingle with the homeless residents of the Grenfell disaster, many of whom had witnessed family members burnt alive. All the victims are poor, many are immigrants. Immediately Corbyn was at the scene, listening and hugging people, and acting as the voice of the dispossessed.
It would seem that the inferior cladding used to renovate the building was the cause of the rapid spread of the fire. People are justifiably very upset and very angry. But in my view it is entirely wrong to politicise this and the other disasters until we have a full enquiry AND inquest into how, in 2017 this could happen. The victims need help, practical help and they need to know that their government is supporting them.
So what do we have instead? A government which was slow to act, slow to demonstrate any leadership.
On the other hand we have the hard fascist left of the Labour Party, called Momentum, which includes Jeremy Corbyn and his sidekick John McDonnell, ( also an erstwhile supporter of terror organisations) showing their true colours by whipping up anger and hate against the establishment. If anyone believes in the rebranding of these two as democratic, avuncular figures, then they need to research their back catalogue more carefully.
There is a proposal to create a DAY OF RAGE to protest against the current government, with the aim of getting one million people on the streets of London.
I am deeply uncomfortable about the politicising of human tragedy and political opportunism in the wake of catastrophes.
I believe we are on the edge of a precipice. Long term, if MOMENTUM strengthens its grip on our Labour Party, we will see moderate, reasonable MPs deselected and replaced by the voices of the Trotskyists who will replace them, and that will spell disaster.
But short term the outlook is bleak. It will take just one more incident, just one injustice, perceived or real, to plunge Britain into civil disorder.
All the pieces are in place: terror attacks; poor people living in unsafe accommodation in the centre of a rich area; warm summer evenings with hundreds of angry people on the streets; a militant left movement ready to profit.
And you know what? We could not have foreseen the catastrophes, but we could have avoided the catastrophic fallout, the hate, the blame, the rage, the political opportunism on all sides if we had just maintained the status quo while we negotiate our way out of the EU.