I’ve got two mosquito bites and a shoulder tan, sitting outside in the garden as Wimbledon wimbles on and Number 10 finally chucks out its rubbish.
There is nothing I can say about the arrogant ‘Eton Mess’ that hasn’t already been said by commentators commentating on July 7th’s bombshell, but ramble I must. It feels like politics, as we know it, is coming to an end.
When I was a young, dark thing, standing up in assembly in Canon Barnet’s school hall in Aldgate, singing, even though I loved singing those hymns from the Church of England, I knew it didn’t really apply to me. I was neither Christian nor English, I was an Ashkenazy Jew who never belonged, with more hair than Claudia Winkleman. Aldgate, Brick Lane and Whitechapel, was teeming with immigrants who brought their cultures with them. Barrels of roll mop herrings and hot baked bagels, and although I had a warm affinity with being Semitic I also knew that I was not one of them Englishers. I was a bottom feeder at the bottom of the pile, one of them working class types.
Working in Ireland in the 70’s – back when the British Army climbed the stairs on the Belfast buses their rifles cocked – I read the graffiti painted on the red brick houses proclaiming ‘Sectarianism kills the workers.’ It struck a chord and still does, not just for the religious, but for the haves and have nots.
By the time I was eighteen it had slowly dawned on me that I was living in a system that was defined by housing, education and holidays. A system that was built from the top down. A system that I came face to face with when I was eleven. I sat an entrance exam for a private girls school. My mother wrote me an essay which I hid under the sleeve of my blue v necked sweater that was handed down by my brother. I knew they would ask about our summer holiday, which I had never experienced. My mother created a fantasy about ‘STOPATHOME’ which I copied diligently whilst sitting in the head mistresses study a huge room of rugs, books, vases of flowers and polished wood.
Of course I got in and was given a music bursary because I was dead good on the piano. I was the very model of the cultured Jew. I was there for two years, each morning at roll call my wardrobe failures were ignored, I was the poor girl whose laddered Lisle stockings were overlooked. I was the kid of a market trader who couldn’t afford the whole kit which was purchased from ‘Harrods’. When the school went to Wimbledon I was left behind as my lack of uniform gave the wrong impression. I was the rebel who refused to wear her beret at the bustop and was reprimanded for wearing a ban-the-bomb badge. I was the working class kid with a chip on her shoulder, although in my case it was a latke. They thought nothing of punishing me by leaving me all alone as the rest of the school sat on the centre court eating their strawberries and cream.
So I was well versed in being the underbitch, but I didn’t know quite how difficult it would become when I started in the theatre and entered TV. It was years before Danny Dyer legitimised cockney, I didn’t understand that my chosen industry was not of my class. Everything about me said outsider, I survived by doing as I was told until I didn’t. So now when I watch the antics of our Party in Power I’m watching the very same privileged people who barred me from Wimbledon. I have acquaintances who can’t stand my anger, who don’t understand my deep rooted hatred of injustice and flummery. They came from wood panelling whilst I came from wood chip. I have friends who accuse me of being a champagne socialist, of being a hypocrite. Acquaintances who support a political position of superiority, who if they had the chance would sell off their garden – and their grandmother – to yet another money grubbing property developer who couldn’t give a shit about the environment.
They have the power, with the Mess from Eton presiding over a party that represents selfish, greedy conservatives who have forgotten what conservation means.
What that Entitled fucker has done is divide the country, polarise it to such an extent that nobody knows who they are any more. Red walls versus blue walls as the untermenches dig their own graves.
When his allies scream in terror that Boris has kept socialism at bay they don’t know what Socialism means any more.
Putin has discredited it.
Xi Jinping has discredited it.
A utopian ideal has been discredited by a Thatcherite generation who only want Britain for the British, although what does that even mean?
Nobody wants to be working class any more we all want to be socially mobile with granite islands in our kitchens and superfast broadband in every room.
We are witnessing a class war that is shady and opaque.
Mick Lynch is being silenced because he is an articulate working class man, but he won’t be silenced by the likes of Rees-Mogg, a man of such utter hypocrisy that a Catholic commentator wrote; ‘Rees-Mogg wraps himself in the cloak of religion, to justify his cruel and outrageous behaviour and policies.’ A man who has duped the masses by his so called eloquence, common or garden decency has been hijacked by plaster saints.
Let me be clear, being working class is neither good nor bad, it’s but an historical definition for a time when there were jobs for working people. Now, for me, it means an allegience to a history, to a past of graft and solidarity with others. Our new found freedom from Brexit has revealed the very nature of who we are becoming as a country; a brutish nation that has become selfish and unforgiving, a nation whose leaders, and I’m not saying anything that hasn’t been said a million times before, with leaders who are totally out of touch; food banks, substandard schools and crumbling hospitals. Without shame they scoff at those of us who can’t afford private health or dentistry or electric cars or central heating.
So are we now not engaged in class war? Lest were forget that sectarianism kills the workers, take a breath as we witness the likes of cobblers in Kettering voting Tory because they believed all that Boris bullshit. Gaping wounds being covered up with flimsy plaster. A Boris vote meant voting for a clown and because, at the moment, there isn’t a viable alternative.
What the departing Prime Arsehole exposed is the very contempt that his crew hold the rest of us in. They’ve played us and we’ve laid down like puppies and let them tickle our tummies.
It’s time now for all Rottweilers to stand up.
It is time for the voice of the common man and woman to be heard.
Fear of socialism is fear of equality and fairness.
Fear of socialism is fear of losing power.
Fear of socialism is the fear of genuinely levelling up.
What that disgusting, arrogant lier has exposed is the inner workings of a group of weak charlatans who are now covered in their very own shit that is flying off their fans.
The caste system is frowned upon in India, but what of our caste system?
We stand alone as our cabbages rot in the fields, and our lorries are parked up in Deal. We stand alone as a nation who has forgotten what it’s like to stand up for each other. Those tired Tories are now in the process of dismantling our human rights and criminalising any dissenting voice.
It is unfashionable to shout ‘United we stand divided we fall’ Thatcher made sure of that, but Boris has revealed the truth of a divided nation, that nobody can be trusted. So who, what and where do the rest of us turn to? The class war is raging however inappropriate that is, the class war is raging, and until the poorest and the meekest find their footing the likes of Boris will rise again.
Bertold Brecht in ‘The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui’ said of Hitler ‘The bitch that bore him is in heat again.’
We would be wise to listen