“We did it before, we can do it again, and this time, better” – Ken Loach
This week, the Institute for Fiscal Studies, in all its glorious economic orthodoxy, has proclaimed that Labour’s 2019 manifesto can’t be afforded. Meantime, former Bank of England and other economists have rejected this analysis.
We have been here before. This exact same value-judgement was made about Labour’s 1945 Manifesto pledges. And had Churchill won in 1945, there would have been no NHS as he said there was not the money for it.
Whether 1945 or 2019, the challenge is the same: ‘affordable’ will not save us, it will not enable the transformation we need. For Attlee and Keynes, Corbyn and McDonnell, there is one core economic and value-based truth: public investment in people and society is not ‘debt’ – it’s the exact opposite.
1945 is being referenced throughout this election. We need all voters to realise how much they still benefit from the 1945 administration and we need to channel that collective courage now.
The video below is a summary of the huge achievements of the 1945Labour government – Labour at its very best: ‘paying it forward’ like no other party can do.
Background to our Attlee Nation project
In Oct 2017 we organised a mini-festival to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of Clement Attlee – Ken’s intro at the start of our 1945 video was filmed at the festival; and in 2018 we took a theatre event to TWT Liverpool – In Clem’s Own Words was the second performance of readings by and about Attlee drawn from Francis Beckett’s biography. Cast included Kika Markham, Adjoa Andoh, Jeremy Hardy, Richard Attlee, Paul Mason and Owen Jones.