Conservative commentator Peter Hitchens has called for the Tory party to rename itself the Socialist Workers Party as it would be a more honest description of its ideology.
In an interview with left-winger Owen Jones, Hitchens a former Trotskyite, said senior party officials now say things he would have said when he was on the far-left – the only difference being they don’t know they’re saying left wing things.
Hitchens also said that the party’s recent election victory was based on a “fantastically clever” campaign and did not represent a moral victory.
Here are some selected quotes:
On Labour leadership front runner Jeremy Corbyn:
“[He is winning] because of the observable fact that the Blairite project – originated in the kitchens and pantries of Euro-Communism – has now been taken over by the Conservative Party, and therefore the Labour Party has been freed of its need to be Blairite anymore.”
“It’s a spasm of ‘all right then, we’re free at last'”.
“It’s a very good demonstration that we still have a strong national sense of humour.”
On his former Trotskyism:
“I thought Marxism and Leninism had pretty much the answer to the problems of the world.”
“It was a reasonable mistake to have made. Unlike people who have been vaccinated against a disease, I’ve actually had the disease so I’m totally immune from it in a way that mere vaccination couldn’t possibly provide.”
On the Conservative Party:
“If it called itself the Socialist Workers Party I wouldn’t have anything against it.”
“It is a left wing party: it’s egalitarian, it’s got much more in common with the SWP than it has with conservatism.
“In fact I often hear David Cameron and George Osborne coming out with things which I used to say when I was a trot. The difference is that I knew when I said them that they were Trotskyist things to say. They have no idea. They are left wing but they don’t know they’re left wing – which is even more alarming in some ways. At least Jeremy Corbyn knows he’s left wing.”
On the party’s General Election victory:
“I hoped that [The Conservative Party] would break up, but I simply underestimated the enormous power of lies and money which enabled the Conservative Party to obtain a victory in the elections.
“There was no national trend, but there was a fantastically clever, well-targeted, very costly campaign by the Conservatives in targeted constituencies which won them a technical victory on points.”
On David Cameron:
“I don’t think he stands for anything.”
“He’s quite likeable, I can’t feel any passion against him, it would be like feeling passion against a blancmange.”
“He has absolutely no interest in changing anything, he has a great deal of interest in maintaining things as they are and in being in office while they are maintained.”