On 7th June, the people of Britain will go to the polls to elect the next government. According to all the polls Labour is set to gain a hefty majority over the Conservatives. The polls show that Labour is now leading the Tories by a massive 28 points. Yet the election campaign has been as dead as a Dodo, and the great majority show little interest and less enthusiasm for either New Labour or the Tories. The general election turnout is likely to be low - some have even predicted the lowest for over 100 years. The reason for this alleged "voter apathy" is not hard to find.

Editorial note: The following is a full version of the shorter article we published on 8 June on the British election.
Labour has won the elections with a majority of 167 seats at Westminster, only slightly down on last time when they won a landslide majority of 179 seats. On the face of it, it is an outstanding triumph for Tony Blair. But these results do not adequately express the contradictory nature of the mood in British society. The mood of the masses is sceptical. The working class is disappointed and frustrated with New Labour. Despite Labour's landslide victory, the underlying mood is extremely volatile.

There have been a lot of disasters on the railways in Britain. But the real disaster has been rail privatisation itself. There was a lot of rhetoric from the Tories about the 'dynamism and efficiency' private capitalism would bring, but experience has shown that the only people to benefit from rail privatisation have been the profiteers, not the general public that has to use the railways. So what is the alternative?

The cornerstone of a freedom established almost 800 years ago is now under threat from a Labour government. The latest reactionary piece of legislation hands power to the Home Secretary of the day to hold those he claims to be suspected terrorists under house arrest indefinitely.

Tony Blair has called the general election for May 5. He did this as opinion polls show a sharp fall in Labour support, down to 37% of the electorate, with the Tories close behind at 34% and the Liberal Democrats at 21%. This would indicate another Blair victory but with a much reduced majority and with significant layers of the working class voting for nobody. There will be no street parties this time.

Way back in 1959, the then Tory prime minister, Harold Macmillan, went into an election with the slogan that Britain has “never had it so good.” Now, according to Gordon Brown, the UK has enjoyed, under his stewardship, the longest period of sustained economic growth since 1701! However, it does not say much for capitalism and the British variety of it that the longest period of economic growth in its history is just seven years.

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