The Tories claiming to help ordinary people by scrapping meagre green policies is sickening. Hundreds of new licences to drill North Sea oil and gas will only help their rich mates. The vast majority of oil and gas produced by Britain, the second largest producer in Europe, is exported.
It’s a myth that North Sea oil helps to sustain national energy security and keeps prices low for ordinary people. It’s crucial that remaining fossil fuels are kept in the ground if global temperatures are to remain at a habitable level. The past few months have seen record breaking wildfires and floods wreak havoc across the world.
Climate scientists have said undoubtedly these events were made worse due to climate change. This is just a taste of what is to come. Rolling back on green policies that already don’t go far enough will make matters worse. Instead of supporting people to trade in polluting vehicles for greener ones or improving public transport, the Tories are posing as friends of the motorist.
They have the nerve to argue that it’s green policies making lives harder. The reality is that life’s harder because of rising inflation, years of austerity and public services that no longer function. The move smacks of sheer desperation from a party that knows it will lose the next general election.
Labour’s response is pitiful. It doesn’t recognise that the majority of people are deeply concerned about climate change and would like better public transport. This is not helped by trade union leaders falsely continuing the narrative that green policies are a threat to jobs.
There are millions of potential jobs in the renewable energy, green transport and retrofitting sectors. But the Tories enjoy huge donations from their pals in the fossil fuel industry and will not make the vital changes we need.
Abbott has to give up on Labour
In April MP Diane Abbott wrote a letter to The Observer newspaper arguing that Jewish people, Travellers, and Irish people do not experience racism in the same way that black people do. Abbot was wrong and she quickly apologised.
But Keir Starmer used it as an opportunity to purge another prominent member of the left from his party. Abbott remains suspended. Last week she posted on X, formerly Twitter, “The internal Labour Party disciplinary against me is fraudulent.”
She pointed out that her disciplinary was being carried out by those that answer to “the same Keir Starmer who immediately pronounced on my guilt publicly”. Abbott is right to call out Starmer. And she has never received an apology for the racism perpetuated against her from within Labour, as highlighted in the Forde Report.
But for all the justifiable anger, there is a sense of defeat from Abbott and a recognition that the Labour left has been neutralised by Starmer. Abbott is my MP. She and her supporters face choices.
Do they continue to support whatever Labour candidate stands in Hackney at the next general election? Do they put their energies into internal Labour fights? Do they stand as independents? Or will they recognise that the real key to changing the world lies outside parliament?
Save the Stonehenge site from new road and racists
The planned new A303 road tunnel is threatening Stonehenge’s World Heritage Site status. The Tories approved the plans again, despite years of campaigning against them. The scheme reroutes the road that currently runs parallel and turns it into a dual-carriage highway closer to the ancient stone circle.
Unesco, the United Nation’s culture body, says the new tunnel would threaten excavation sites and “sensitive” landscape. I’m not sure how David Bullock, the road’s project manager, can claim it will “conserve and enhance” the site.
Meanwhile racists are upset because the children’s book Brilliant Black British History claims Stonehenge was built when Britain was a “black country”. So Stonehenge can’t have been built by black people before race was a construct, but it can have a £1.3 billion road threatening its status. Welcome to Tory Britain.
Fight for a world where girls feel safe
A study by BBC Radio 5 Live says teenage girls feel unsafe at night and online in comparison to our male counterparts. I bet almost every girl has known or at least heard of someone who has experienced the horrors that can happen to women as they walk alone at night.
The study says at least 44 percent of girls feel unsafe walking alone at night in comparison to 24 percent of boys. That’s a terrifying statistic. Young girls are forced to take extra precautions and worry regularly for our own protection and safety. And this sexism also extends to the online world, thanks to the exposure young people have to bigoted figures like Andrew Tate.
People like Tate use the internet to normalise vile discrimination and sexism. As teenage girls, we have every right to feel safe. This is just more evidence of the deep‑rooted sexism and oppression against women that is at the foundations of our society. We have no option but to dismantle this society for a safer and fairer world.
Strikes can save the NHS
People wrongly argue that if the NHS has no money, giving more of it away to striking doctors risks its collapse. Can’t they see that the NHS will collapse if doctors aren’t paid more—to stop them quitting the profession or moving abroad? The NHS is in tatters because of Tory privatisation and austerity. People who claim to care about the NHS should realise that.
No such thing as ‘illegal’
Why does the right insist on splitting refugees between “genuine” and “illegal”? According to the Tories anyone who comes over the Channel by boat is “illegal”, even though more than 80 percent of people who do are eventually granted asylum. I don’t think that anyone would leave their homes and risk their lives to come to Britain if they didn’t have a good reason.
Beware the union leaders
I agree with your reports on the TUC union federation’s recent conference (Socialist Worker, 20 September). TUC general secretary Paul Nowak is as spineless as most of the union general secretaries. He has big words, but doesn’t have a spine.
The analysis in the report about Mick Lynch, RMT union leader, was also interesting. I’ve been saying since last year that we need to be more critical of him. He is a wordsmith and says the right things to the media.
But apart from holding a few shitty reporters to account, what exactly has he done? He set up the Enough is Enough campaign. But he dropped it like a hot coal. We have to be critical of our “leaders”.
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