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You won’t be surprised to learn that I am supporting Jeremy Corbyn as the next leader of the Labour Party.

He’s not really a “hard-left extremist”, despite what the media tells you.

He is an old fashioned social democrat, like the Labour government of 1945, which brought us the National Health Service and the welfare state, or like current governments in the Scandinavian countries, which have some of the highest standards of living in the world.

The only reason he can be portrayed as an extremist is that politics have moved so far to the right in the last thirty years that what is now considered the centre ground was once the exclusive preserve of the right wing of the Tory Party. Thatcherism is the new orthodoxy.

So Tony Blair is on the rampage, telling us to reject what he calls “Alice in Wonderland politics”.

This from the man who told us that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction which could be deployed within 45 minutes.

Blair did a deal with the oil lobby and the Murdoch press, took us into an illegal war which killed more than a million Iraqis and set off the chain of events which led directly to ISIS. And he thinks we should listen to his sage advice?

Corbyn has said that Blair could stand trial for war crimes. Perhaps this might explain the ex-leader’s urgent need to intervene in the debate.

Tony Blair became wealthy after leaving office, which illustrates something else about the hysteria surrounding Corbyn’s candidacy.

The word “capitalism” literally means rule by those with capital. Rule by the very rich.

Corbyn’s policies are a bid to return us to the post-war mixed economy which saw unprecedented levels of wealth for the majority of people in this country, and a relative decline in the influence of the financial elites. This wasn’t socialism. It was regulated capitalism.

Thatcher’s policies were designed to reverse that trend.

Not satisfied with having lots of money, the capitalists want ALL of the money. Austerity is their means of achieving this.

A Labour Party committed to cuts in public expenditure is not really a Labour Party at all. It is just another Tory Party, handing us a wilted rose.

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The Whitstable Gazette.
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