UK Theresa May called snap UK elections (after promising not to) in order to consolidate power in her own party, shutting up the MPs who didn't fall into line with her policies — this was the same logic behind her predecessor David Cameron's decision to call a referendum on Brexit, and both banked on the idea that the UK electorate wasn't willing to vote for an "unthinkable" alternative in order to tell the establishment to go fuck itself.
The picture emerging as the June 8 election date draws closer is one in which May repeats Cameron's miscalculation: her approval rating has been in free-fall, even as her opponent, the much-smeared, backstabbed left-wing candidate Jeremy Corbyn gains ground.
If the election were held today, the governing Tory party would lose seats. Labour is in striking distance of winning a majority, and the momentum appears to be with Labour. So, what on earth happened?
First, May's ploys struck a lot of voters as too clever by half. She seems like an opportunist, first opposing Brexit, then supporting it; first promising not to call a snap election, then changing her mind. Just another scheming politician.
But something more fundamental could at work. When Corbyn made public Labour's platform, known in the U.K. as its manifesto, ("For the Many, Not the Few,") the initial commentary from the usual suspects was that the program was hopelessly leftwing – raising taxes on the affluent, increasing public investment, re-nationalizing the national rail grid, capping rents — that sort of outmoded stuff.
Well, it turns out that a lot of ordinary Brits have been hungry for this kind of program. They certainly didn't get it from the last two Labour governments, under Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, who joined the globalist, neoliberal parade.
Jeremy Corbyn's Surprising Gains
[Robert Kuttner/Huffington Post]
(via Naked Capitalism)
(Image: Sophie J. Brown