Tired of the same old politics – by Tony Leigh 

The Labour leadership race is all over the news at the moment. My reason for writing this article is just to explain, calmly and rationally, a few of the reasons why I think Jeremy Corbyn is the best bet not only to lead Labour, but the whole of the UK.

Before you roll your eyes and say “another loony lefty, brainwashed by Corbyn”, let me explain to you a little about my background.

I am a 32 year old, self-employed electrician. I love football (I’m a Gooner for what its worth), music and going down the pub. I’m also a father of two beautiful little girls. My parents split when I was 3 years old and I have never been what you would call well off. I rent my home and at this moment in time cannot ever see myself being in a position to buy a home of my own. I have had to work hard for every penny.

I’m not saying not everyone does, but just trying to put into perspective the view many have of your typical “Corbynite”. It seems to me its only the great unwashed or the middle class bourgeoise that people think are backing Jeremy.

This patently isn’t true.

At a recent local meeting, I found people from many different working backgrounds, races, religions and nationalities. We all had one thing in common. A goal. To make the country we live in better for everyone. A desire to make politics fairer, to bring that to the entire nation, not just those that can afford Savile Row suits and second homes.

I hear people complaining all the time about politicians being out of touch, being self-serving, claiming unwarranted expenses. I could go on. The list is endless.

Well at this moment, for the first time in a long while, certainly in my lifetime, we have an opportunity to finally get behind someone who will fight for everyone. Who will fight to see everyone get a say in how we run the country. Not just pay lip service and spew out promises they have no intention of keeping.

“Jeremy Corbyn’s weak and unelectable” is a favourite of the media, but how can a man, who from the very day of being elected leader, has fought against not only his “enemies” (the media and the Tories), but also against his supposed colleagues and peers, be called weak? Its nonsense. Under his leadership, in just nine months, he has already changed the face of politics.

This change has become fashionable with the likes of Theresa May promoting values pioneered by Corbyn in her first ever speech as Prime Minister. Now, we even have Owen Smith taking to the platform in the leadership race with policies that Corbyn has been championing, policies that were deemed “too left and unpopular”. Policies, debates and a surge in membership that have been unprecedented and reawakened and invigorated those like me who were alienated from politics by “business as usual”.

In all honesty, I’d never heard of Jeremy Corbyn until he was elected leader. I too thought, this bloke can’t be Prime Minister. He’s scruffy, he’s too polite etc. I’d long known the media had an agenda and told us what they wanted us to know not what we needed to know, but I still bought into the lies. I paid a passing interest in politics because I’d been told if you don’t vote, you can’t complain about the state of the country. One day that changed.

Rather than looking at Jeremy, I listened. I listened to a man, that actually wasn’t that scruffy, and heard him speak about a society that benefits the many, not the few. I heard a man saying the things I’d said for years, but never heard repeated by a politician. I heard a man speak that sounded like you and me.

Every time I hear Jeremy Corbyn speak, I feel the honesty in his words. Here is a man, I thought, that doesn’t say what he thinks everyone wants to hear. This bloke says what he means, what he actually wants to see happen, and none of it is about him.

People say that Corbyn’s politics and economics are vague, but many of those who criticise him don’t actually take the time to listen. I won’t bandy about facts and figures, but I know that proposing a higher living wage than both the Tories and Owen Smith, with fact based reasons can only be a good thing for everyone.

He has a policy to create 1,000,000 jobs in his first term in office. Real concrete jobs- manufacturing, trade etc. Things a working person can be proud of. He wants to introduce a fair living wage for all, which will enable us to spend and build the economy, rather than those at the top stripping profit and taking money away from our economy for themselves. This is a man that wants to build homes for people. Affordable, decent homes. Hopefully when my children grow up they can afford their own homes. With the current state of the country I’m not confident that’ll be the case.

Immigration is a huge issue for Britain, but I don’t believe that the problems we face are down to immigrants, as many would have you believe. There are masses of evidence out there, that for the past 40 years budgets and cutbacks to our essential services, schools, hospital beds, social housing, jobs, and so on, have been held back by a right wing Labour or cut by the Tories.

If we invested more in these areas, immigration wouldn’t be an issue. Migrants aren’t stealing your jobs, doctors appointments, houses. They’ve been stolen by people that want to gain more for themselves and their mates, without a care in the world for us.

Brexit has seen a peak in these thoughts, and that was all accountable to the Tories. Jeremy Corbyn has got a lot of stick over the Brexit result, but remember he made more appearances than any other Labour MP during the campaign. I still maintain, investment removes these hurdles and immigration would be much less of a flashpoint.
In closing, Jeremy is my choice to lead Britain to better things, because he is an honest man who wants everyone to succeed. Not just those with the money to succeed.
View story at Medium.com

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