FOR weeks, I was living in fear of an election win by Labour and Jeremy Corbyn. Many middle-class houses in the street where I live had Labour posters in their windows, as did a nearby trendy café and local Hippy health food store. It seemed like I was the only person voting for Boris Johnson.
The thought of being governed by a London-centric, metropolitan Marxist left me in dread. Here was a man who I thought had no idea what it was like to have a real job, to have signed on the dole or worked shifts. Corbyn and his cult members haven’t a clue what it is to be working class.
Even halfway through polling day, I thought all was lost. Queues of young people at polling stations gave the impression that a wave of support was going for the party led by a man accused of being a friend of terrorists and an anti-Semite.
One after the other, celebrities were endorsing Corbyn and trying to tell us how to vote. Steve Coogan, erstwhile pop star Lily Allen, Hugh Grant and some bloke called Stormzy all used their large social media followings to push us away from Boris. Oh how they failed!
The trouble is that these metropolitan luvvies have no idea about real life outside London. I have had the opportunity to mix with such people at book launches and award ceremonies. Having spoken to many celebrities, I firmly believe that they should keep their mouths firmly shut when it comes to politics.
Normal people are just not interested in what they have to say about politics. They are just a bunch of music hall entertainers given a public platform by pretending to be other people or singers who will be long forgotten in 10 years’ time. They are all part of a liberal elite that was one of the causes of the catastrophic defeat inflicted on Corbyn.
Celebrity endorsements can be the kiss of death to a politician and they mix with them at their own risk.
For Corbyn, this has proved fatal. Never has a politician become so toxic on the doorstep that hardened, lifelong Labour voters refuse to put a cross next to his name. His biggest mistake was taking Yorkshire and the North for granted.
What he didn’t know was that the ‘red wall’ was sick and tired of being looked down on by the London elite. They were sick and tired of being seen as stupid, bigots and racists just for backing Brexit.
I was at a Christmas party and, in the conversation, I said that I had voted Leave. The people I was talking to looked as though I had just admitted murder. One of them said I needed to be re-educated and that in a modern world my views were unhelpful, not acceptable and xenophobic. Obviously, he had spent far too much time living in a London bubble and thought that I was just another thick Yorkshireman.
People such as these really do believe what they read on their social media feeds. They believe it is right and proper to undermine democracy and the 2016 referendum just because it didn’t go their way.
Three years of bickering and treachery has pushed Northern voters to the brink. Suddenly, everyone began to realise that we were being treated as dullards and that a small entitled group of Southerners were calling the shots.
This was just a red rag to a bull for the people of the North. London luvvies may call us whatever they like, but never try to take away our democratic rights.
They despised our ethic of hard work for decent pay and sneered that our patriotism was a front for hidden racism. In the end, the likes of Coogan and Grant have got their People’s Vote – and in no uncertain terms.
Yet the response by the London elite to the historic Tory victory has been staggering. Yet again, there is talk of blocking a Brexit trade deal. Do these people not know when to give up?
It seems as if they cannot see any further than the end of their Hampstead gardens. I would really love to know how someone with millions of quid in the bank can ever understand what life on the dole in Rotherham is like, or what it is like to be a fisherman, hill farmer or factory worker.
There is a chasm of difference between the needs of the North and the life view from Primrose Hill, Hampstead or Kensington. It is these people of privilege who are so remote from real life that they are the real problem. Their sense of entitlement makes them believe they are better than us, wiser, more tolerant and woke. It really is time that they realised that there are millions of hard- working people in the North who do not share their world view.
GP Taylor is a writer and broadcaster from North Yorkshire. He lives in Whitby.