A good friend from the US, talking of politics, commented to me on Facebook “Must be nice to have more than two political parties, eh?”
Oh, yes, it’s that common misapprehension that England has a multi-party political system, that there is a plurality of choices. A lot of English people have the same mistaken belief.
I would like to put all my non-English friends (and my confused English friends) straight on this: England is in fact a two-party system. At the moment, it is very, very rigidly two party.
The biggest party by far is the Conservative-Labour-LibDem-UKIP bloc.
I suspect it is the fact that the biggest party looks like four parties that confuses people. But please don’t be baffled.
These various names add up to just one party.
Of this we can be sure because this party, all four of it, is completely and utterly in thrall to capital. It is terrified of doing anything to offend the corporations or its agents or get in its way. These four bits of the main party are falling over themselves to grease capital’s wheels and keep and facilitate its mission to own everything and everyone. The UKIP portion of this party even has the image of the pound sterling as its logo — bit of a giveaway that.
Another dead giveaway is the principle players, the leaders. They are all the same person. He is wealthy, he is male, and has never done a day’s real work in his life: straight from Oxbridge and into the party as an apparatchik. Never having done an ordinary job or faced ordinary problems, he now insists on telling ordinary, hardworking people how to run their lives and runs down every bit of infrastructure that might give them security.
The party is xenophobic. All of it. For sure, some bits of the party are slightly less rabidly xenophobic than other bits, but the party as a whole spends all day, every day chanting ‘Immigrants! Immigrants! Immigrants!’ like Daleks. The subtext of the Dalek repetition of ‘Immigrants! Immigrants! Immigrants!’ being ‘Exterminate! Exterminate! Exterminate!’
The whole party is intent on breaking up England’s social heritage — the NHS, universal education, welfare — and selling it to their affluent mates for scrap.
So it’s clear that despite the bewildering array of aliases, the Conservatives, Labour, the LibDems and UKIP are actually just one party.
The second party in England is the Greens. Unfortunately, they are much smaller than the big party. But they are very different: they put people and the quality of life and giving everyone an equal chance and natural world on which we depend before the interests of capital.
(That’s England. Scotland, by contrast, has a bit more going for it. Scotland has the SNP which to this non-Scot looks like a humane party, England’s main party is barely a factor, and they have their Greens.)
There you have it: England has two parties, a big one and a small one, one for capital and one for people. I hope I have clarified things a bit.