This is the second part in an occasional series called ‘Why I joined Labour’. It’s designed to show you the wide variety of reasons why being part of the Labour Party is such a good thing. We are a broad church and welcome a diverse range of people.
This part focuses on one of our newest members – John Bestley. He lists the multiple reasons below, followed by a brief description of himself.
Reasons for joining
- I watched the Anneliese Dodds Mais lecture and was impressed by her clear communication and in particular the planning for the future
- I regularly watch PMQs and contrast the sensible clear questions asked by Kier Starmer contrasted by the rude, buffoonish insulting answers by the PM
- I cannot understand how we can have so much poverty in this country which is so wealthy, the poor, the weak, those who are disabled or poorly educated are demonised by much of our press and the Conservatives.
- I believe that we have the worst Government in my lifetime. Slogans have replaced serious thinking. Lying and gaslighting has become the norm. There is a profound disconnect between those in power and how many people live their lives. Cruelty to and contempt of those less fortunate seems to have become almost a sport to government ministers and the right wing press.
- I strongly suspect that the Conservative Party is both as a party and individuals in it are seriously financially corrupt. This is based on close links with Russian oligarch money, failure of transparency in PPE procurement and links with the housing sector.
- The Labour Party as the current opposition has formidable talent including Starmer, Yvette Cooper, Rachel Reeves and David Lammy who all interview and come across as adults in the room. The content of what they say is more important to me than the ‘presentation skills’/charisma I want serious people not stand up comics thinking that gags/slogans with no meaning are the answers to todays problems.
- The Labour Party has achieved the most in government in the last century. ‘The Welfare State’ from Attlee, Blair and Brown’s serious attempt at really levelling up with great investment in education, Sure Start and health. I believe in ‘big government’, fair but probably higher taxation and most certainly in society. I favour the approach of Scandinavian countries who unashamedly relate high taxation and excellent services for the benefit of all the people. The wealth of a country is not really measured by GDP, but by the way all its citizens are treated and poverty reduced.
I am a white, heterosexual, married man. I am wealthy as a retired doctor and have a very comfortable standard of living. I am very active in the church as a Reader.
I have always voted Labour except for a couple of elections after the Iraq war because I considered that Blair had misled Parliament, I voted Green or LD then. I voted remain and am appalled by the disaster of how Brexit is being delivered (or not).