Whether Johnson stays or goes, the working class faces exactly the same attacks & Ukraine: reviving cold war lies for their own benefit

 Whether Johnson stays or goes, the working class faces exactly the same attacks: fighting back is the only answer

Just before he appeared in the Commons to say “sorry” on Monday, Johnson visited Tilbury Docks to open “Tilbury2".  In the noise and recriminations over partygate, few even noticed - though Johnson made a point of mentioning it.  He said he was getting on with “delivering” his government’s agenda, while everyone else focused on his lies and his parties...

    Tilbury2 is the first large Freeport and main new border infrastructure, “helping to capitalise on Brexit”, boasted Johnson early that morning.  These special Freeport zones offer an overhead-, tariff- and tax-free ride to businesses - for warehousing import and export-bound goods, or to do very minimal value-adding at maximum gain.  But for workers?

    Sitting at the wheel of a forklift, Johnson boasted that every single bit of the EU legislation taken into British law is going to be replaced in this respect.  Nothing is to remain intact and what’s more, there will be further “deregulation”, of what little remains of workers’ protection against super-exploitation.

    As if the conditions of work under the current agency contracts, which have created a huge class of “working poor” aren’t bad enough.  Yet these are the only path these days to a job for most young workers.  That, or an “apprenticeship” (something Johnson claims will be on offer in these new exploitation zones) - at a starvation “wage”.

    He also repeated that National Insurance Contributions would definitely still be going up.  So along with energy bills and price inflation - the cost of living is skyrocketing.  And now there is a new wave of job cuts - 1,600 at Tesco were announced on Tuesday.  As for the Brexit “benefit”, who even talks about the partly-Brexit-related exodus of Ford, near to Tilbury, except workers directly affected by this?

    So yes, for the working class and poor of this country the real issue is not whether prime ministers lie or not.  Of course they do.  Labour’s “Bliar” stayed in office for another 4 years after the Iraq war.  Nor is the issue whether politicians “disgrace” a parliament which reproduces the class system, or “undermine” a “democracy” designed precisely to keep the capitalists and their personnel in power.

    Whatever the final Sue Gray and Met police investigations reveal, the working class is not going to learn anything it did not know already.  Why would workers have any illusions in institutions which operate against their interests - and indeed, against the interests of society as a whole?

    Whoever or whatever replaces Johnson - if he is ousted - this system will carry on, whether under a new Tory PM or, eventually, maybe even a Labour one.  Until, that is, as a class, workers collectively throw it out. That is what we need to prepare for.

 Ukraine: reviving cold war lies - and dangers - for their own benefit

Hoping to fit in a "Churchill moment", before responding to the barrage of calls for his resignation, Johnson flew to Ukraine.  He aimed to stick his nose into the latest efforts of “diplomacy” with Russia.

    However it seems that there is already some winding down of the West’s drum-beating.  On Monday, Russia’s UN ambassador “launched a blistering attack” on the US for “whipping up hysteria” over a potential invasion by Russia.  Putin has now written a letter to Washington.

    Both Putin and his foreign secretary Lavrov have consistently denied any intention of going to war.  The military deployment along Ukraine’s border is meant to act as a bargaining chip.  Because for Putin, the real military threat is perceived to come from NATO.  For years he has complained about the siting of NATO missiles and the military support to countries along Russia's western border, including to Ukraine.  This was one of the reasons for his 2014 occupation of east Ukraine and Crimea - and the fact that these regions were mainly Russian-speaking and identifying, thus for Putin, "rightfully" Russian.

    Now, however, he is demanding that NATO drop its policy which allows countries to become members, since Ukraine is set to join.  He has a point.  NATO, established during the Cold War to "resist" the then USSR, was never disbanded when the USSR collapsed, even though the lie that it had ever posed any real threat to the West was finally exposed.

    Today, the revival of Cold War rhetoric serves the same purpose as ever. Hyping up the threat of war with Russia is a distraction from the domestic crises western leaders find themselves in. And in the same way it suits Putin to play strongman against NATO, given his growing popular discredit.

    So these degenerate leaders tell lies about imminent war to appear as saviours of peace. The mortal danger for the populations on the ground is, however, that they act on their lies, either by intention, or by error.