Jeremy Corbyn continues to be the Tory media’s punching bag, but unless the public wakes up and opens its eyes — whatever your class standing — the above claim  may soon hold true …

 

There are a lot of poll numbers which are thrown about in the media. Commentators seem to be obsessed with polls and numbers these days when it comes to politics … a worrying insight, I suppose, into the extent of our so-called ‘democracy’. Given that most of the media in this country simply represents the political and economic interests of the rich; I rarely take anything they say or write seriously (Owen Jones, you are excused). Seriously, about five people own over half of our media. Five very rich people.

Anyways, as I was on my way to Whitechapel yesterday — staring out into the murky, grey mass of London — I noticed an article in either the Metro or Evening Standard. It doesn’t really matter which one it was; the Metro is mostly owned by the Daily Mail (Lord Rothermere) and the Evening Standard is run by a Russian oligarch who used to be in the KGB. Same thing.

The article was, unsurprisingly, belittling Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party. It essentially claimed that he was unelectable because he wouldn’t be able to win the middle-class vote. There were some poll numbers involved as well, I won’t bore you. Ultimately, it was incredibly pompous and almost typical of the arrogant, university-educated, closet-Thatcherites that dominate most of our media.

Nevertheless, the author — I didn’t bother to get his name — does have a point. The polls do indicate that David Cameron’s Conservative Party still have a substantial lead over Labour. On the whole, it does appear that middle-class voters are more likely to trust Dave and Gideon with the economy — and thus their pensions, wages and public services. I would like to add that this is not necessarily a result of Corbyn’s leadership. Wasn’t it Blair and his New Labour cronies (now perfectly embodied by the shiny, sneering faces of Tristram Hunt and Chuka Umunna) who presided over the economy in 2008 when the markets crashed? Dave and Gideon backed them every step of the way, it should be noted.

Now, this could indeed change if the economy implodes … again. Whether you are a drooling-at-the-mouth-Marxist or not, it is fairly obvious that capitalism — or neoliberalism if you will — is firing blanks. It’s not working. People are getting poorer whilst the richest 1 per cent or 0.01 per cent are amassing more and more wealth. And trust me, that ain’t good for anyone unless you are rocketing out of a very wealthy vagina.

Under the Tories, the richest 1 per cent now have as much financial wealth as the poorest 57 per cent combined (and let’s be honest, that’s probably you and me). Moreover, it took the top 0.01 per cent a mere two days to surpass the average salary in this country — roughly £26, 000 per year. Two days. Whether you are middle class or not, this government simply does not have your political or economic interests at heart. That is, unless you are like them — a millionaire.

Now, instead of spending the remainder of this article throwing facts and figures at you in some desperate attempt to convince middle-class (or indeed, working-class) Tories to look deep inside their souls and find some f****** sense or morality, I would rather recount a short story:

A few weeks ago, I was talking politics with two friends who happen to come from rather wealthy families. The conversation, after touching upon issues like ISIS and immigration, eventually moved on to the subject of Jeremy Corbyn. Both of them, like the mainstream media, expressed abject terror at the prospect of that nice, old man becoming Prime Minister. One of them even started moaning about how it might restrict or infringe upon her boyfriend’s bonuses at Morgan Stanley — one of the financial firms that went bankrupt in 2008 after they lost OUR money. Oh, and who bailed them out?

This ultimately inspired the conversation to move on to the delicate issue of ‘class’. I mentioned that the average salary in the UK was about £26K and that Jeremy Corbyn simply aspires to create a fairer society where, among other things, the rich and multinational corporations actually pay their taxes. One of my friends shrugged the comment off and simply said: ‘oh, well those people are poor’.

The dialogue continued and I spoke about how I know people – earning about £90, 000 per year or so – who are really struggling at the moment. Austerity and public sector cuts are not just affecting the homeless and unemployed; the middle class are also suffering. I was then told, to my utter dismay, that £90, 000 per year wasn’t really that middle class. Apparently, a middle-class salary is about £3 million per year. Yes, £3 million is allegedly what constitutes ‘middle class’ to these people.

Of course, this is a ridiculous statement. Moreover, my friends (who happen to be quite lovely in spite of their politics) are by no means wholly representative of the top 1 per cent or 0.01 per cent. I am sure that many in this category, Tory or otherwise, are a lot more on point when it comes to defining one’s social or economic background. Nevertheless, this conversation did have a rather profound impact on me.

To sum up, I believe that this anecdote — however trivial — shows you in a rather superficial way, where at least some of the richest in our society might see you on the social-economic spectrum. If, like many aspiring middle-class folk who vote Tory, you are trying to somehow get into their prestigious club … I hate to say it, but the club doors are firmly shut. Wake up and support Corbyn’s Labour Party.