What A Fucking Dismal Decade For Those Of Us On The Political Left

So it’s the last few days, of the last month, of the last year, of this decade without a name, a time when people will reflect upon their favourite films or favourite TV series or favourite videogames of the past decade, Snowpiercer was my favourite film of the decade, my favourite videogame was Cities Skylines, as for my favourite TV series well I hate to be unoriginal as it’s likely the same as anybody else’s which of course is Game Of Thrones, but hey I’m not known for being a pop culture commentator or critic, I’m known as an uber sweary political commentator, so enough with bollocking on about how frigging awesome Snowpiercer & Game Of Thrones were & lets reflect in around about meandering style how dismal this decade has been for anybody who’s politically to the left.   

Your truly with Alys the love of my life

Though my conclusion is it’s been a dismal decade for those of us on the left of politics, for me personally it’s actually been better than an okay decade, the two major highlights for me personally were successfully coming out as trans in 2010 & then meeting the love of my life Alys (aka Kim Justice) in 2017. There have definitely been more positive than negative highlights for me personally this past decade, from giving up smoking in 2011, to finally managing to move into a decent home in 2016, to surviving a heart attack in 2018 (yes surviving a heart attack is a positive), there was also going to the Houses of Parliament for the first time in 2013 to lobby MPs on the issue of trans rights & subsequently doing so several times, then there was finally getting to talk to my trans hero Caroline Cossey though it’s a shame she turned out to be an utter truscum bigoted cunt well they do say don’t they that you should never meet your heroes they’ll only ever disappoint you.

This has certainly been the decade when trans people became far more prevalent in the public eye, yeah this isn’t just the decade where I came out as trans but just about the entirety of the trans community has seemed to have come out from hiding rejoicing in trans being far more about liberation then it being a stigma. Sure as a consequence of trans people having been far more prevalent in the public eye & thus there being far more interest from the mainstream media in trans people, it’s given rise to the cult of the professional tranny celebrity which I don’t think is helpful in the long term for trans people, however I do acknowledge that trans people appearing in the mainstream media has helped push justice & equality for trans people further up the political agenda which is no bad thing. Yes with trans rights becoming far more of a hot topic politically it’s created a transphobic backlash this however was always going to be inevitable as it’s happened previously when the issue of justice & equality have come to the forefront of the political zeitgeist in regards to other sections of society, but when looking back overall at the past decade regards to the plight of trans people I do think its been mostly positive & one of the few things non transphobic progressive lefties can smile about.

Richard Garner a friend who I lost near the beginning of this decade but still miss

For me personally & for me as a trans woman yes this decade has been generally positive, however it’s not as if I didn’t lose people close to me along the way, in particularly I think of my friend Richard Garner who died of a drugs overdose in 2011, after all these years I still find myself in floods of tears thinking about Rick, yes our politics were different he a libertarian-anarchist & me a socialist but we often found common ground politically whether it was opposition to the war in Iraq or legalizing pot, he was also a massive supporter of the LGBTQ community & supported me when I came out as trans when many others round me didn’t, but what I miss most of all about Richard was he was just as Punk Rock as me liking all the same movies & music & definitely having the same fuck you attitude. The death of trans activist Lily Summers in 2016 is another bereavement I find myself getting moist eyes about, me & Lily were on different sides of the Labour Party but a great deal of what she warned about in regards Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the party has come true. I was recently reminded of a photo of me taken in a pub on New Year’s Eve 1999 along with 5 other drinking buddies, 20 years later I’m now the only one still alive, let us just say the deaths of those 5 chums weren’t due to natural causes, I don’t know sometimes I think I suffer from survivors guilt because I do often think how comes I’m still alive despite all the hard liquor I’ve drunk & all the illicit substances I’ve ingested.

Lemmy the world is duller place without him

This of course was the decade we lost Lemmy, he truly was the last of the troubadours who didn’t give a fuck, he just lived sex, drugs & rock ‘n’ roll to the fucking max. Lemmy was the very embodiment of sex, drugs & rock ‘n’ roll, definitely one of my ultimate rock & roll heroes & this world is a far duller place without him. Politically this was the decade we lost Charles Kennedy who I ironically once met in a bar sometime around 1998, he was a thoroughly decent man & in my opinion the last great leader of the Liberal Democrats, I remember back in 2003 he took a principled stance as Lib Dem leader in opposing Tony Blair’s ordering the involvement of the British military in the illegal invasion of Iraq, no other leader of a major parliamentary party did so & there were other prominent members of the Lib Dems such as former party leader Paddy Ashdown (who died last year) who supported the invasion of Iraq, so it was a brave stance he took & the right stance he took, he spoke for me & millions of people in opposition to Blair disgracing this country with the military misadventure in Iraq, Charles Kennedy might no longer be with us but I still applaud him for the stance he took.

I remember Lemmy died right at the end of 2015 & considering what a rock icon he was his death seems to have been a precursor to 2016 the year of the celebrity death what with the passing of David Bowie, Prince & George Michael etc. When historians look back upon this decade, 2016 will be seen as the pivotal year of this decade & not because it was the year Alan Rickman & Carrie Fisher died, but because it was the year of Brexit & Trump.

Back in 2009 I wrote an article for a news site which no longer exists, in which I essentially predicted the rise of the far-right during this decade, well both Brexit & Trump were a consequence of the rise of the far-right with all the hate & intolerance which comes with the far-right. You telling me that Brexit & Trump weren’t motivated by racism, Jesus fucking Christ don’t you recall the rhetoric which plumbed the depths of racist intolerance during both the EU referendum & the Trump presidential campaign?!?! Actually the truth as to what caused both Brexit & the election of Trump is the lack of investment by successive governments (including left of centre governments) in communities which had already spiralled ever downwards into being shitholes, people being constantly fucked in being denied any decent opportunity of bettering themselves & in waltzes the narcissistic egomaniac likes of Donald Trump & Nigel Farage telling the ill-educated poor & desperate living in those communities that its immigrants or people merely being different to them who are to blame for them being constantly fucked!

Brexit & Trump were a product of far-right opportunism, but that opportunism was given to them by the failure of the left, oh it’s definitely not been a good decade for political left that’s both the radical & mainstream left. Wonder whatever happened to the Occupy Movement, oh yeah they went the same way which Extinction Rebellion will be going, as in into historical obscurity having accomplished fuck all, I’m not saying street protests never accomplish anything because the Poll Taxes riots (& yes I was there) of nearly 30yrs ago were the beginning of the end for Margret Thatcher, but ultimately it will always be electoral politics which effects real change & how the mainstream left has failed spectacularly on that score this decade. Labour have lost 4 General Elections in a row this decade, sure the 2010 defeat was deserved as whole Blairite project had run its course & people wanted a change, the 2015 defeat well all Ed Miliband as Labour leader was offering was regurgitated Blairite shite which amounted to Tory lite & people just thought fuck it why not just have full fat Tory, some might want to somehow spin the 2017 defeat as some kind of victory yeah sure Labour did better then any pundit was expecting but it didn’t prevent the Tories in continuing to kill thousands more disabled people did it, as for the 2019 oh fuck we are all still reeling from that one being its one of the worse General Election defeats for Labour despite the Tories having been government for practically a decade.

Me with Jeremy Corbyn back in 2015

It seems a lifetime ago when upon that second Saturday in September of 2015, Jeremy Corbyn was elected Labour leader by a landslide & all us redder then red socialists got drunk as fuck thinking here starts the revolution, but here we less than 5yrs later & well the revolution is down the fucking shitter & on the brink of entering the 2020s I’ve never been as scared as I’m right now about my future as a consequence of being a disabled people. It’s disabled people who Labour have ultimately failed, I’m not saying disabled people should from now on never vote Labour again because of course they should continue voting Labour, what I’m saying is that Labour have failed disabled by not winning elections & thus not being in government & so not putting an end to the Tory genocide against disabled people.

The Official Tory policy when it comes to caring for the disabled

The most dismal thing of this dismal decade has been the scale of the Tory genocide against disabled people, yes I knew when the Tories were elected to government in 2010 they were going to make disabled people pay for the reckless behaviour of their banker chums which the decade previous had caused a global financial crisis. But I never thought it would result in the murder of a 100,000 plus disabled people nor the architect of the government program which has resulted in genocidal levels of disabled people being killed would be receiving a fucking knighthood in the 2020 New Year Honours!

I actually hate writing this kind of ‘year in review’ or ‘decade in review’ type article, not because often end up to be lengthy pieces, but there’s always stuff you forget to mention no matter how many notes you make. Dale Farm, the war in Libya, the riots across Britain in the summer of 2011, Chelsea Manning & Julian Assange, all important stuff which hasn’t gotten mentioned in depth with this review, I guess to sum up this review of the past decade would be to describe it as the stuff which had the biggest impact on me or just that I can’t write about everyfuckingthing which has happened this decade.

I Can’t Vote Lib Dem Because I’m Not a Wealthy Able-Bodied Trans Woman

Jo Swinson is most certainly not having a great 2019 General Election campaign, as leader of the Liberal Democrats she’s proving herself most definitely not to be an electoral asset for the party, in fact according pollsters the more people hear & see of Jo Swinson the more they dislike her. It surprises me not that the more voters hear of Jo Swinson they dislike her, because oh how she loves to whinge & fucking whine. Whine, whine, Jo Swinson is perpetually whining, I can’t recall an appearance Jo Swinson has made in the mainstream news media where she’s not been whining like some swotty political version of Veruca Salt & its annoying as fucking fuck.

Prior to the first televised GE2019 debate which aired last Tuesday, as per usual Jo Swinson was whining specifically about not being invited to participate in ITV’s leaders’ debate but the irony is ITV might’ve done Swinson a favour in not inviting her to participate, because when she was invited to participate in last night’s special leaders’ edition of Question Time oh deary me her performance on BBC Question Time was far from stellar, in fact her performance on BBC QT was atrociously dismal & fuck me it was painful to watch.

Swinson struggling on Question Time

Swinson claimed during her appearance on BBC QT she was anti-fracking whereas her voting record & previous political sponsorship say otherwise, generally Swinson didn’t seem to react well to members of the QT audience being angry about their expectations of the Lib Dems being etc & then the Lib Dems when elected doing completely other than etc, which goes to the crux of my personal animosity towards the Lib Dems.

Obvious to anybody familiar to my writing that I detest the Tories with every fibre of my being for the misery they repeatedly inflict on vulnerable people, but if the truth be told I probably have just as much pent up animosity towards the Lib Dems as I do towards the Tories, I might in fact have more pent up animosity towards the Lib Dems then I do towards the Tories because whereas I know the Tories are evil fucks who’ll do evil shit the Lib Dems are truly the party who’ll say one thing & will do another, kind of found this out for myself when around the time civil partnerships became legal for same-sex couples & the local Lib Dem party bigwig told me she had nothing against gays/lesbians just so long as they didn’t live next door to them.

Very liberal NOT for your local Lib Dem councillor to be a homophobic bigot who then when challenged about being a homophobe said she wasn’t always a liberal, err I don’t think was ever a liberal nor ever would be a liberal as it was obvious as fuck they were utterly clueless as to the meaning of liberal, but hey what’s fucking new because most Liberal Democrat party members seem fucking clueless as to the meaning of liberal, I’m a redder then red socialist & I seem to know more about liberal political philosophy & the history of British liberalism than your average moronic Lib Dem member, it’s not as if I’m expecting every Lib Dem member to know every facet of liberal philosophy or be able to quote word for word John Stuart Mill’s treatise On Liberty, I just don’t expect them to allow the selection of screaming ignorant intolerant bigots to stand for election.

The ultimate Liberal Democrat betrayal was of course the 2010 General Election, when millions of voters were led to believe the Lib Dems were the ‘progressive choice’ only to then watch aghast as in the aftermath of GE2010 the Lib Dems jumped into bed with the Tories. Obvious to me those in the BBC QT audience who were giving Swinson a hard time as well as many who’ve been challenging her whilst she’s been on the election trail, have long enough memories to remember it was Lib Dems who helped to prop up the Tories in government from 2010 to 2015 & helped the Tories get started with persecuting the most vulnerable in society with austerity, including the persecution & blatant mass murder of tens of thousands upon tens of thousands of disabled people. Both Jo Swinson & Lib Dem leader Ed Davey have the blood of dead disabled people on their hands as they both were ministers in the in Con/Dem coalition government which committed crimes against humanity upon people with disabilities & rather then doing the decent thing in apologising for the hurt they’ve inflicted upon disabled people the Lib Dems apparently still don’t seem to give a shit about disabled people.

If helping the Tories commit what essentially amounts to genocide when it comes to disabled people wasn’t egregious enough, the Lib Dems have snubbed disabled people with the omission of disability rights from their equalities manifesto, talk about insult to fucking injury, also ironically embarrassing considering the chairperson of the Lib Dems Sal Brinton herself is a wheelchair user.

I actually know of a pretty wealthy trans woman who up until recently was a pretty prominent LGBTQ member of the Liberal Democrats, she however resigned from the Lib Dems when Tory defector joined the Lib Dem parliamentary ranks as Lee had abstained on the vote to broaden marriage equality for same-sex couples, okay I sympathise with this particular trans woman resigning from the Lib Dems when Lee was welcomed with open arms by Jo Swinson & co because yes his voting record is decidedly homophobic, but whereas it was enough for her to resign from the Lib Dems because a Tory defector to the party abstained on the gay marriage vote, it wasn’t enough for her to resign when the Lib Dems were helping to persecute & murder tens of thousands of disabled people.

Jo Swinson at launch of the Lib Dems election manifesto

The one thing the Lib Dems have been banging the drum as loudly as they’re able to this General Election campaign regards their equalities manifesto is their support for reforming the Gender Recognition Act to make it easier for trans & non-binary people to self-identify, which being trans I of course welcome & there are other Lib Dem policies such as decimalising marijuana, support for proportionate representation, but the snub to disabled people is for me as a person with multiple disabilities enough to put me off even contemplating to tactically vote Lib Dem as I have previously done up until 2010 due to living in the kind of safe Tory constituency where if the Tories put up a tub of lard or a dead horse it would still win by a landslide. Seems to me if you’re a wealthy abled bodied trans woman who doesn’t give a flying fuck about disabled people then the Lib Dems could be the party for you & believe me not giving a fucking fuck about disabled people isn’t an uncommon sentiment amongst trans people.