Although there is no doubt that racism must be challenged through direct and vocal public protests on the streets, it is clear that this is not enough. Thus presenting a forthright and clear political alternative for people to vote for during elections is essential. Such an alternative must consciously align itself with ordinary people — that is the working-class — in sharp distinction to all the four traditional mainstream parties who embrace the lies about austerity that are promoted so industriously by the super-rich.
Here, alongside the Tories, the Lib Dem’s and Labour, I of course include UKIP amongst the representatives of the super-rich — owing to their leadership’s origins in a right-wing break away from the Tories. The lack of a clear working-class political option for normal people helps explain firstly why so few people vote, and secondly why Labour is losing so many of its former voters to right-wing populists like UKIP.
We have to be sure that the reason why people are distancing themselves from Labour, along with the Tories, is precisely because of Labour’s lack of any meaningful political policies. Labour is doing nothing to address the real concerns or normal people, concerns which include job insecurity, a lack of affordable housing, stretched public services, and a race-to-the-bottom in pay and working conditions.
UKIP on the other hand with the help of the mainstream media, capitalises at every turn on the fears of working class people – particularly those about immigration, while diverting blame over collapsing living standards from the bankers, big business and the super-rich. Labour fails to take up such issues with any degree of success and so we have the sad situation that many voters who support political policies which are to the left of Labour will support UKIP to punish all the mainstream parties.
Indeed, recent polls have demonstrated that when asked many UKIP voters support left policies. For example, YouGov found that 74% of UKIP voters support nationalising the energy companies; and 72% of UKIP supporters are pro-nationalisation of the rail companies. But of course these are not the policies of UKIP. This why I am working with many others to represent the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition in the forthcoming elections, as I believe that one of the most effective ways to undermine the racist politics of all the mainstream parties is to present a clear working-class alternative to the public that can inspire people to once again get involved in politics.