BORIS Johnson opened prime minister’s question time yesterday by apologising for giving the impression that lockdown rules, imposed by his Tory government, had not been followed when he attended a party in the gardens of Downing Street in May 2020 at the height of the Covid pandemic.
He apologised that ‘rules were not being followed by those who make the rules’ and that he took responsibility ‘for things we didn’t get right.’
However, he was at pains to insist that he thought the party was just a ‘work event’ but recognised in hindsight that ‘mistakes were made’. Labour leader Keir Starmer then called for Johnson to ‘do the decent thing and resign.’
Johnson, of course, has no intention of resigning. He made it absolutely clear, saying that Starmer should not pre-empt the inquiry that has been hastily set up into this event.
This was Johnson’s response to every Labour and SNP member who lined up, calling for Johnson to do the ‘honourable thing’ and resign. Since when have the Tories ever done the honourable thing?
Indeed the attitude displayed by Johnson and the Tory government, of one law for us and one law for the rest of society, is exactly the position that the ruling class has always lived by.
It doesn’t care that over 150,000 lives have been lost to the Covid pandemic, nothing should stand in the way of a good booze up while people were dying alone.
The millionaire bankers and bosses have all the material means to shield themselves in their mansions, while workers and their children face dangerous conditions where the virus is allowed to run virtually unchecked.
Why should they worry about anything except making sure that capitalism is kept open and the profits keep coming in.
What was played out in Parliament yesterday was a complete charade – with Johnson making a phony apology and Starmer forced to call for his resignation in the full knowledge that the Tories will hang on for the result of some inquiry in the distant future, or until such time as they decide he is too much of a liability and ditch him.
Calling for Johnson to resign was nothing more than verbal jousting by Starmer, designed to appease the great mass of the population who are demanding not just Johnson but the entire Tory government be kicked out.
Verbal opposition by the Labour leadership is nothing more than collaboration designed to give the Tory party and the ruling class the time to work out who is going to replace him, with Starmer eager to offer the Labour Party up as willing collaborators in some form of national government if the ruling class decides it is necessary.
With the full impact of inflation and the massive rise in energy bills set to hit the working class in the coming weeks ahead, the bourgeoisie are acutely aware that the time for the buffoonery of Johnson is over, and what is required is a new form of dictatorial rule to battle it out with a working class determined not to be driven into poverty and starvation by a bankrupt capitalist system.
As the News Line has insisted, the immediate political issue is whether the Johnson regime is brought down from the left or the right.
If the bourgeoisie are permitted to bring him down at a time of their choosing it will usher in a police military dictatorship, to wage war on the working class at home and prepare for imperialist war against Russia and China.
The alternative is for the working class to bring down Johnson and the Tories by organising the trade unions in a general strike to kick them out and go forward to a workers’ government and socialism.
This means dumping the Labour and trade union leaders, who offer only verbal opposition to Johnson and the Tories while collaborating with the façade of bourgeois parliamentary democracy, and replace them with a revolutionary leadership prepared to smash the capitalist state and go forward to a planned socialist economy.
Only the WRP and Young Socialists are building the revolutionary leadership that this crisis demands.
Join the WRP and YS today – there is no time to lose!