England, Wales and Scotland section of International Socialist Alternative

Don’t mourn, organise

It’s not the result that we were hoping for. The Tories’ big majority will be seen as a huge blow to the working class, with the dire prospect of five more years of callous Tory rule.

And what does that mean for us? Boris Johnson may have said that austerity is over, but nine years of cuts have taken their toll on our public services.

The NHS is at breaking point, preparing for another winter crisis, when in fact it’s in crisis all year round.

Boris Johnson’s reaction the shocking image of a boy with pneumonia lying on a hospital floor due to lack of beds? To pocket the journalist’s phone rather than to acknowledge it!

Despite gaffe after gaffe-for instance, bizarrely hiding in a fridge to avoid another journalist- somehow his promise and much-repeated mantra to ‘get Brexit done’ had an effect. And people are certainly frustrated with the Brexit impasse.

This election became the ‘Brexit election’ despite Jeremy Corbyn’s best efforts to make it about the things that would improve the lives of the majority of people- tackling climate change, protecting the NHS, ending precarious job contracts, free education.

People will be rightly concerned at Johnson’s reactionary rhetoric and failure to apologise for his bigotry: from describing Muslim women as looking like letterboxes- which resulted in a spike in hate crimes- to his homophobia and sexism. And his decisive victory will no doubt embolden those that share these views.

But it would be a mistake to think that this result means that socialist ideas aren’t popular. A huge number of young people registered to vote in this election, inspired by Labour’s manifesto and policies. And it would be a mistake for Corbyn to resign as leader, he should stay and fight to transform the party into one that represents the interests of the 99%.

Boris Johnson’s victory may have been a landslide, but it’s built on sand. He won’t be able to ‘get Brexit done’ and the Conservative party will remain a party riven with crises.

We don’t have to take this result lying down. The working class, when organised, is the force in society that can bring about change. We can build a movement to fight back, and to defend Corbyn and his socialist ideas. Workers-fighting to defend their jobs, young people- fighting for their future, and the Trade Union movement need to be at the heart of it.

If we fight we can win. So join the fightback, help to build a movement for socialism, and if you agree with us join Socialist Alternative!


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