Conservative Governments: “Strong against the Weak, Weak against the Strong”

Britain is a few weeks away from a snap general election called by Prime Minister Theresa May. Presumably this has been suddenly sprung on a generally unsuspecting public because the ruling Tory junta think they will obtain an even larger parliamentary majority than they have now. Unfortunately they may be right.

So last week I received the campaign leaflet for Alexander Maughan, the young man representing the Tories where I live. The opening quote suggests I should vote for Mr Maughan “For a strong Conservative team working for you”.

Now I know there are some very decent Tories. My parents were Tory supporters all their lives, and they were very decent people. Victims of brainwashing and mainstream media propaganda, like most Tory supporters, they never knew any better.  I don’t know Mr Maughan and have no reason to think he is not a pleasant and decent young man. But generally speaking, Conservative teams do not work for me – or 99% of other British people. Conservative teams have only ever worked for one group of people: the super-rich and powerful 1%. Their given reason for doing this, that it will benefit all the rest of us, is well-known to be untrue.

Consider that word “strong” in Mr Maughan’s leaflet, a word the Tories are very fond of. It gets used a lot as though strength is a quality we should admire. Sometimes we should indeed admire it, but not always: it depends how strength is being used. Bullies are often quite strong, but there’s nothing admirable about them; and Tory governments have a long and inglorious history of being bullies. Jeremy Corbyn absolutely nailed it when he said the Conservatives are “strong against the weak, and weak against the strong”.

Take, for example, the Tories’ unfailing support for illegal American wars, perfectly summarised by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson recently, when he said that if the US asked for British help to bomb Syria (which they’ve been doing anyway) “it would be very difficult to say no” – no matter that bombing a country without a UN Resolution to do so is illegal! The US has behaved like a rogue state for more than half a century, bringing terror and misery to billions of people all around the world and wreaking economic and ecological catastrophe wherever they can. An endless succession of Tory governments (the Blair/Brown regimes were also effectively Tory governments) have nearly always supported the US in their trashing of our planet. The Tories also give strong support to various abominable regimes such as those ruling Saudi Arabia, and Occupied Palestine. That’s Tories in action for you: weak against the strong, just as Mr Corbyn said.

There’s also the economic devastation of our country to consider, wrought by decades of Tory policy, resulting in homelessness and food banks – in this the fifth richest country in the world. And let’s not forget the Tory policy that has stolen hundreds of billions of pounds from pensioners – as WASPI, the group campaigning against this particular outrage has realised. Also there’s the despicable closures of A&E departments up and down our country – the result of long-standing Tory policy. You can’t find anyone weaker than someone who needs emergency health care, and the Tories have been ruthlessly attacking that care for decades. That’s Tories for you – bullies – strong against the weak, just as Mr Corbyn said.

I strongly encourage young people to get into politics: their generation is in very big trouble. But representing or supporting the Tory party is a huge mistake. Their customary practice of being strong against the weak and weak against the strong is the reason why the young are in such trouble. So Tories must be strongly opposed at every opportunity, not supported.

John Andrews is a writer and political activist based in England. Check out John's books: Fiction: The Road to Emily Bay; Non Fiction: The School of Kindness; The People’s Constitution. Read other articles by John.