Photo: Tomas Dekeyser
The election was clearly a proxy referendum on Brexit. The simple messaging of getting Brexit “done”, with the entire media establishment lined up to attack Labour and Corbyn, and years of extreme-centrist and blue-Labour wrecking actions, including the farce of the engineered antisemitism “crisis”, have led to a situation where we have an actual racist with racist policies as Prime Minister for the next 5 years.
We lost because of Brexit. The left-wing policies in the Labour manifesto were, and remain, popular with voters. But the extreme centrists in Labour and the media want to pretend this was a rejection of compassionate, left-wing policies. If anything it was a rejection of Labour’s policy of a 2nd referendum on Brexit, which centrists now forget they had demanded.
Ironically the same people who said Labour were unelectable because of the racism of 0.01% of its members are now advocating Labour become more racist in order to be more electable.
The voters rejected Labour’s 2nd referendum at this election, they also rejected the centrism of the Liberal Democrats. Anyone arguing that a more “moderate” leader would have defeated Tory Brexit-hysteria have to explain the failure of the Lib Dems first, and the explicit swing from Labour to the Brexit party. The fact is that any Labour leader to the left of Blair would have also been monstered by the press. That they were able to demonise a kind, vegan, lifelong anti-racist campaigner as "literally Hitler" shows the power and cynicism at play against us.
For the sake of the marginalised, the sick, and poverty stricken in this country, for the sake of the environment, for the sake of the thousands of innocents UK bombs obliterate overseas, we cannot allow neoliberal pro-war centrists like Jess Phillips and Tom Watson to wrestle back control of the Labour party. Watching them cynically manoeuvre themselves into that position on TV last night was shocking and transparent.
In all the “analysis” of Labour's defeat we watched after the exit polls came in, the closed-rank assault by the press billionaires and BBC was barely mentioned, if it was, it was dismissed as an excuse. That’s fucking absurd. The left obviously need to look hard at our tactics and strategy for winning elections in what is essentially a one-party state, with a billionaire-controlled media environment. But we cannot lose the Labour party, which remains the only vehicle for meaningful parliamentary change. If you aren’t already a member, please join today, to fight to keep the left at the heart of Labour. We don’t beat the Tories by becoming Tories.
That said, it is also time to remember that elections are only one small part of politics. The incredible movement of people who have thrown their time and energy into trying to enact socialism over barbarism are still out there, and we can’t allow heavy hearts to halt our momentum. We have to mobilise and put our bodies on the line to defend migrants, to defend traveller communities, to defend BAME people, LGBT+ people, and others, against what is bound to be both policy-led and street-based attacks against them. The battles are now those of organisation, protest, and direct action.
Tony Benn said “There is no final victory, just as there is no final defeat. Just the same battle to be fought over and over again. So toughen up, bloody toughen up.”
We don’t reject and fight against racism, militarism, corporatism and austerity because they’re easy things to defeat, we do it because it is the right thing to do. It was never going to be easy, and the chances of winning were always slim, but the Tories and entrenched power in this country want you to be hopeless. After seeing the mass mobilisation of activists that was possible in this election, I don’t feel hopeless.
This weekend is the launch of a Museum of Neoliberalism I've co-curated with Gavin Grindon, at The World Transformed 2019 festival in Brighton. Tickets are still available, but if you can't make it I'll be posting photos next week.
We also hope to show it elsewhere, including at WAR Gallery, and have been thinking about it as a starting point, and a sort of prototype for, The Thatcher Museum I was banging on about a few years ago.
I'll also be talking at the 'Subvertising Symposium' at The World Transformed on Sunday alongside Ad Block Bristol, Matt Bonner, Michelle Tylicki and Dog Section Press.
Tory Land theme park adverts have started appearing on the London Underground. You don’t need a ticket, you’re already there. The ad featured in the mini Daily Mail I did with RRUNews in Liverpool. I'm doing a kickstarter to get it reprinted which you can back here: www.minidailymail.co.uk.
I made this installation for The World Transformed 2017, a politics and arts festival/conference held by Momentum and related groups at the same time as the Labour party conference. This year it is in Brighton and ends on Tuesday. More photos after the jump!
After finishing the installation I ran into this guy in the street.
I also had some of my other anti-Tory election work on display at Fabrica. This one I drew while on the Positive Propaganda artist residency.
All these are still available to download from toriesout.co.uk
I drew this for a poster for the excellent The Moonlandingz, a fictional band made up of members of Fat White Family and The Eccentronic Research Council who are doing a real tour. They are very good at doing it and you should go see them do it. Tickets released on Friday at 9am here. The actual poster is below, after the jump.
Some kind souls have been printing out my anti-Tory propaganda and clandestinely installing it on tube trains around London. There are more photos and the files to print your own posters on the project page. Although I cannot condone potentially breaking any laws, I can certainly enjoy looking at photos of such behaviour. If you see any around take a photo and tag me in it (IG @spellingmistakescostlives) or send me an email.
I been up all night finishing this nightmare. Britain desperately needs a new operating system. Download large version here and see/download/print all the anti-tory posters I've designed at (the easy to remember) toriesout.co.uk.
Today is the LAST DAY to register to vote! www.gov.uk/register-to-vote
This is going to be part of a fold-out A4 leaflet (PDF) I'll be sending to 20,000 homes in key marginal constituencies. Everything has been sent to print and I've spent more than was donated so if anyone out there is able to chip in towards the cost of shipping these out to volunteers that'd be amazing. Even a couple of quid helps. www.paypal.me/spellingmistakes
And get in touch if you live in or near a marginal seat and fancy dropping some of these through letterboxes over the next two weeks. firstname.lastname@example.org
If you've already contacted me I'll be in touch soon about details. Thank you!
Remember that our Trident nuclear submarines also run on Windows XP.
I've been designing anti-Tory propaganda in the run up to the election and raising funds to print it a fold-out leaflet poster to drop through letterboxes. You can download printable posters here and donate here: www.paypal.me/spellingmistakes
I was asked by the Conservatives to design an election poster to set out their #planforbritain, which includes a commitment to first-use of nuclear weapons in whichever war Trump decides we're all going to die in.