So there’s an election tomorrow. 90% of voters (who vote) are going to place their X next to a party candidate, hoping their lives will improve. Or at least be made less shit than they would have been if someone else got in. 10% who vote postally already have. There’s wall to wall coverage, wall to wall analysis, wall to wall comment. Policies are announced, picked apart, borrowed and stolen.

But have you noticed?

At first glance there seems to be important, essential topics being discussed and decided. It seems like there’s a choice to be made. Your Vote Counts.

Then, on the second look, it starts to become apparent: For all the “main” parties are announcing policies and positioning themselves, very little of substance is being said.
In fact the parties themselves knew all this campaigning would achieve nothing – Cameron conceded to Clegg that the Tories would not win a majority of the seats before the last parliament was dissolved.
No one is selling a coherent, cohesive vision of a future that people want to vote for. The deceit and corruption of parliamentarians that has been exposed since the 2009 expenses scandal, through brazenly broken pledges not to vote to increase tuition fees or increase VAT, to the appalling cover-up of industrial scale child sexual abuse by MPs and their powerful friends and the shocking revelations of establishment involvement in inciting violence during the Miner’s strikes of the 80’s to justify crushing unions under Plod’s boots and draconian laws have left many utterly un-engaged with the main parties. Combined with the almost identical “austerity” strategies of Lab and Con, it’s unsurprising that most people of voting age will not vote for either of the parties that hope to govern.

Look again. A 3rd time. But look more closely. What is actually being offered by the main parties? As far as I can see, it’s a harder version of the same soft Economic War that has been waged upon most of us relentlessly since the late 70’s. There will be more, deeper cuts. We will be “tough on welfare”, “tough on imigration”. People will suffer and some will die as aresult of these policies, but the problem won’t be solved.
We know the richest in this country have doubled their wealth in the same period most of us have suffered austerity, wage cuts, job losses, inflation, sanctions. Our national assets have been sold at knock-down prices to the highest donor. This is the result of deliberate policies. Do you think it’s a accident?

This is something that has directly affected most of us. So where’s the discussion about this? As inequality and poverty blossomed over the past few years I predicted there would be a ramping up of the old soft war techniques of diverting the blame to immigrants (tick), the sick and disabled (tick), the poor (tick). We’ve had false flag “terror” attacks and the drum beats of business for the war machine are booming louder across the globe. The tone of coverage these issues have had in the past couple of years has been disgusting. We’ve given birth to Katie Hopkins and the monetisation of racism, bigotry and hatred. And it’s depressingly effective. Those whose wealth, assets and futures are being strip-mined by the wealthiest and most powerful have on the whole lapped up this bile being spewed  on them from all directions. Ask people now why we had a recession and they’re likely to say “Labour overspent”, then blame migrant labour for the lack of affordable housing or low wages. No mention of Banks destroying themselves, holding us to ransom and being bailed out by us, with money borrowed from them. This is classic soft war – a war of deception. We’ve got to fight back against it. Right now most people are fighting on behalf of their wealthy oppressors. It’s perverse.

“Minor” parties are starting to put forward something of a more positive vision – a stance against austerity, talk of re-nationalising utilities, transport, taking steps to address the most egregious aspects of inequality.  As a result they are experiencing a surge in popularity, particularly amongst the younger voters, and that has to be a cause for hope.

But you have to look to the fringes to find visions of real change. Russell Brand has popularised some of these, The Artist Taxi Driver has produced interviews and performance art pieces discussing them, but people on the whole haven’t yet seen the possibilities for alternatives. The Robin Hood Tax, Positive Money, The Citizen’s Income campaign, the Ubuntu movement in South Africa, the Money-free Party – there’s all sorts of alternative visions out there.

This battle has been lost, and we’ll pay for the defeat in the years to come, but the war is far from over. The first step in fighting back: Don’t let them lower your horizons and limit your vision.

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