Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Think of Bill Shorten & Weep

The following lengthy 'comment', taken from the thread which follows Guardian journalist Owen Jones' article Stand by for more attacks on Corbyn's principled foreign policy stance (21/8/15), is framed as an Open Letter to Jeremy Corbyn.

Corbyn, of course, is the frontrunner in the contest for leadership of the UK Labour Party, and a harbinger of hope for a more progressive United Kingdom.

When you read it, think of 'our' Bill Shorten and weep:

"I grew up in a family that was politically active and aware. I watched the news nightly with my folks. We debated politics and religion and all manner of fascinating subjects. I remember, at the tender age of 16, being filled with envy for those who were old enough to vote and be involved in the political process. I watched the first federal election in which I understood the issues and the arguments for and against, champing at the bit to be able to play a part and cast my vote at the ballot box.

"By the time the next federal election came around I was already so disillusioned with politicians and their broken promises that I had little or no interest any more. What I witnessed in the intervening years was heart-breaking and soul-destroying. I was so young, and yet so cynical. Every vote I have cast since then has been well-informed, knowing all the issues, voting for who would be most likely to keep the promises they made to do all the things the country needs. Every time, I listlessly pushed my vote into the ballot box knowing it would make no difference. But, aside from protest, it was the only power I had. Every time, I was disappointed by charlatans who only seemed to want to disenfranchise the working class and maintain the status quo for the wealthy, the aristocracy and most importantly, the multinational corporations.

"I marched against the war in Iraq with millions of others all over the UK. It was an amazing day, filled with hope and solidarity, and the sense that we could, with this much opposition, halt the plans of this dastardly government to lead us into an illegal and immoral war. And then we were ignored! The government ignored the people it was meant to represent. It was the final nail in the coffin of my belief in democracy as a functional political system.

"This morning I awoke to read that Jeremy Corbyn, should he become Labour leader, is going to apologise on behalf of the Labour Party for the Iraq war! I felt a sudden, massive injection of hope for the future, and it is almost exhilirating! It is a feeling that has been building ever since I first heard his name. I can hear a man talking about caring for each other, building a Britain that looks after its sick, its disabled and its destitute, and might even try Tony Blair for war crimes! I want to jump in ecstasy and blissfully skip down the street in celebration. I can't believe I've got a whole day of work to do before I can celebrate having my love of politics rekindled and my energy for the fight reinvigorated. I've joined the Labour Party to support Jeremy Corbyn because his vision of the future is the one I want and I actually believe he is not just telling me what he thinks I want to hear! I actually believe he holds in his heart empathy and compassion, and that he will KEEP HIS PROMISES should he win power.

"But now I'm witnessing forces within the Labour Party trying to rig the election against Jeremy Corbyn. It's bad enough that the Labor Party are excluding members from voting, but now they're intending to annul votes AFTER they've been cast. So my cynicism of the democratic process as a whole remains intact. Thanks, Labour. But at least I can hear someone rallying the troops to fight the good fight.

"I didn't think I'd ever feel this way about politics again. Thank you, Jeremy Corbyn, and all who are supporting him, for resurrecting my love of politics and giving me hope again! Thank you so VERY, VERY MUCH!

Yours faithfully


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