This is precisely what it is, and the more (justified) outrage it causes, the more its inhumanity is revealed, the crueller the treatment, the more the Govt will think it’s worth it.
They have no sense of basic decency, and they assume their supporters don’t either.
The calculation is simple. The focus groups show them that a significant number of their supporters want them to act like this, so it has to be visible and has to be tough.
The same goes for insisting on frictiony borders with the EU despite the obvious economic damage. They want queues of lorries, and cars being ripped apart and chaos in airports and Eurostar. It show they’re being tough. It shows they’re taking back control.
Every crappy thing that happens must be visible, must cause outrage, for the strategy to work. The damage can be visible as well, because the calculation is that the minority of the electorate they’re appealing to doesn’t care about the damage, or will blame someone else for it.
It’s the Go Home vans as a template for all of government. They weren’t targeted at illegal immigrants. The Govt couldn’t give a shit what they think. They were targeted at Conservative voters.
“Look, we’re total bastards, but we’re your total bastards to people you hate”
See also attacks on the judiciary, civil servants, foreign companies, Parliament, Scotland, Devolution, minorities etc.,etc.
All bodies or people that the core right-wing support hate, no matter how much they need them.
(in fact, in the case of foreign companies, they particularly hate that they need them).
The question is whether this assumption is actually the case. For a set of the core support, I suspect it is, but that’s not enough to win elections. Many that tacitly accept it, or even deliberately look away are also needed to get that 37-ish%.
That is why opposition and calling out this dreadful Govt. must continue. Those fellow travellers that turn away must be forced to see it. Those that tacitly accept it must be forced to see that they’re not bystanders, but that it’s in their name.
Maybe there’s no hope. Maybe 37% of the electorate are active, hate-mongering racists frothing in anticipation of harder and harder line measures. I doubt this though.
I realise this is essentially hoping for a sudden, widespread attack of basic decency, which seems pretty remote. What else is there to do though than at least try to create the conditions for that to happen?
You can follow @GuitarMoog.
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