It is easy to describe deputy chair of Conservative Party Lee Anderson, MP for Ashfield, as a bigot, a provocateur, a grifter, a scab, a performing seal, a distracter, a dead cat provider, a scammer and a yob, as a professional enemy of humanity, honesty, integrity, intelligence and emotional maturity, as a wallower in nastiness, defamatory rhetoric and gleeful joy at people suffering due to Tory government, as a friend, associate and supporter of racist far-right activism, and as a democracy thief who stole a council seat from Labour, for whom he was elected as a councillor, when he switched to Tory party without calling a council by-election.
It is easy to observe the intent that directs Anderson’s daily predictable utterances on a variety of political issues. His role is to focus attention for blame away from the government and the governments’ employers and onto people who are recipients of destructive Tory policy and onto those who are trying to fight against it.
He attacks asylum seekers and refugees, non-Christians, people on low income, people with disabilities; he attacks strikers, trades’ unions, human rights lawyers, investigative journalists; he attacks schools, universities, police, fire service, health workers and judges if they dare to not be pro-right-wing bigotry.
He is, proudly, “anti-woke.” The popular definition of “woke” widened in recent years but when right-wingers describe themselves as “anti-woke” they mean precisely that they enjoy spouting any and all forms of bigotry. They are opposed to anything and anybody that challenges the status quo of conservative domination and exploitation. Anderson indulges in the “culture war” against “woke” from exactly the same perspective as Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, Douglas Murray and their ilk.
His role includes propagating prejudice and othering by blaming others for financial difficulties of working people and, thus, removing blame from the real perpetrators. He expressed non-caveated support for actions and rhetoric of violent racist thugs who attacked the residences of asylum seekers and refugees.
He blames victims of Tory ideology of Social Murder for the problems imposed upon them. He delights in derogatory and defamatory comments toward people using foodbanks and their money problems; he delivers the comments with a smirk on his face.
It suits his party that his personal and work background differs from the usual Tory route to becoming an MP via private school –> university –> corporate employment or political employment –> MP. Packed with anti-society products of expensive private school machines and/or senior executives, partners and owners of large businesses, Tory party needs MPs it can claim, erroneously, are representing working people.
It needs a few voices that pretend they are observing and reacting to the world from a different perspective to Etonians Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg. The con-trick claims ordinary people’s views and concerns are being expressed when Anderson expectorates but the reality is he is promulgating exactly the same anti-society trash vomitted by secretly-funded libertarian think-tanks Centre For Social Justice, Centre For Policy Studies, Tax-Payers’ Alliance, Legatum Institute and Institute Of Economic Affairs.
He attacks intelligent analysis of Tory ideology by casting it as out of touch or elite; all Tories echo that line but Anderson’s presentation is from a supposed working person’s background. It is difficult to maintain sincerity of an Etonian accusing others of being “elite” so Tories are keen to use a different voice – Anderson’s – as another facet of the aforesaid con-trick.
Money from the grift is his main motivation but Anderson enjoys his role. He enjoys taunting and laughing in the faces of victims of Tory policy particularly people hardest hit financially by Tory policy and ideology. He revels in his persona of yobbish, aggressive and offensive behaviour and verbal outbursts. However, like all far-right bloviators, he cries victim when accurate criticism is directed at him.
In 1970 John Lennon sung
“There’s room at the top they are telling you still;
But first you must learn how to smile as you kill;
If you want to be like the folks on the hill.
A working class hero is something to be.
A working class hero is something to be.”
When he wrote ‘Working Class Hero’ Lennon’s inspiration wasn’t grifting careers of working class Tories, but Anderson learnt to smile (or smirk snidely) as he spouts his gaslighting drivel and he enjoys feeling “like the folks on the hill” from Eton, St. Paul’s and Westminster schools.
On 16th February (2023) opinion-tank Unherd, notoriously “a herd of the already heard, all too often” – see Unherd, published a purposefully deceptive contribution by sleight-of-hand academic Matthew Goodwin (advisory council of Free Speech Union; Legatum Institute via Centre For UK Prosperity; commissioner of Social Mobility Commission; ex-Chatham House). Goodwin’s main grift is authorship of books about far-right politics in UK wherein he chooses to present its rise in popularity as organic response to other political perspectives rather than the reality of dark money funding and promotion of ideologies by media outlets, by politicians and by professional grifters like Goodwin. His piece for Unherd discussed Lee Anderson.
He knows with certainty that Anderson’s role is to try to gather working class support for the Tory party by presenting himself as different to predominantly privately-educated wealthy Tories, and Goodwin is determined to perpetuate and enhance that con-trick. He used the word “elite,” with exactly the same intent of far-right agitators like Nigel Farage in UK and extreme Republicans in USA, as a pejorative description of people who criticised Anderson’s appointment as Deputy Chair of Tory Party, and claimed the reaction of the “elite” was “class snobbery.” Goodwin’s chosen stance, borne of his directional imagination, was devised to bolster Anderson’s faux alternative Tory persona.
As a professional reverse-researcher (or reversearcher) – he reverse projects his dogmatic ideological axioms backwards onto discussion of public opinions and perspectives – Goodwin is a member of the far-right annex that moans incessantly about liberalism being intrinsically bad for white working-class men. His Unherd article is not a commentary on Anderson, it is a guidebook for him and his PR.
“If, like Lee Anderson, you come from the working class, did not go to university, spent much of your adult life working outside politics, and do not share the liberal if not radically progressive consensus which now pervades our politics and culture, then your voice has been excluded and stigmatised.”
The key point in Goodwin’s complaint above is not a claim of exclusion of someone who is working class, non-university educated and had a normal job as such a description could apply to, for example, union leader Mick Lynch. His focus is exclusion of someone who is illiberal and non-progressive but Goodwin added the extra description as part of the con-trick.
He gave an exposition, fairly accurately, of the decline of working-class representation in parliament in recent decades with reference to schools attended and whether or not MPs had real jobs before becoming politicians. That decline is a huge problem for democracy in UK. But, Goodwin applied his agenda of encouraging people to reject liberal philosophy to his exposition. He claimed there is gulf between parliament and people due to liberal, progressive, humane or socialist political viewpoints being middle-class and said people from working-class backgrounds want to stop small boats in the Channel, push back against “radical progressivism” and reintroduce capital punishment.
His fraudulent analysis was grossly insulting to working-class people but it wasn’t real analysis. It was an attempt to inculcate such views while simultaneously justifying their validity. He presented a supposed left-leaning perspective “on cultural issues” as opposite to “the values of the average voter.”
“As the graduate class continues to drift further to the Left on cultural issues, they are taking the graduate-heavy institutions with them, pushing them further and further away from the values of the average voter.”
Anderson acts out the scenario that Goodwin and like-minded influencers want – promotion of far-right ideology and practices – while being a tool for the latter to form conclusions about the “elite” “left.” Goodwin’s quackery and absurd arguments are deliberate. His intent was to provide politicians and gormless servant journalists with easy-to-use pseudo logic to perpetuate the con-trick. His skill is verbosity and relentlessness and that is also his grift. Anderson’s grift is to play his part as a bigotted buffoon. If UK had a real government and had real media then both Anderson and Goodwin would be laughed out of the limelight as extremist charlatans and as conmen.
Tory party, their think-tank advisers and the right-wing media are pleased with Anderson’s contribution to their propaganda strategy. He fits exactly into the role of a conservative “working-class” voice from a normal working background and he expresses a deluge of bigotry across a range of issues. They believe he can encourage people to vote Tory even if their lives are harmed persistently by Tory policy and he can help to promote libertarian ideology including all forms of prejudice and xenophobia and including general anti-society and anti-humane philosophies. Further, as Goodwin showed, Anderson’s existence helps the right to describe socialist politicians and activists as “elite.”
Anderson is very happy with his role. Like many of the new Tory MPs first elected in 2019 general election – Miriam Cates, Johnathan Gullis, Tom Hunt, Scott Benton – if he had been politically active in a slightly earlier political epoch (1970s) he would have been in National Front.
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