human rights, UK Politics

The Tories’ unfair monopoly is threatening democracy

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If David Cameron hadn’t been embarrassed enough by the revelations of his father’s tax scheming, it looks like he and his partners in the Tory administration have much more still to hit them. Allegations of election fraud, threats to Britain’s independent media services, and the party’s monitoring of minority parties for supposed extremism are now coming to light.

With stories of financial malpractice by some of the globe’s most influential people, it is clear that the Panama Papers saga isn’t over. The Tory party isn’t only corrupt in that the family of its leader, as well as high-profile MPs support methods of tax evasion through offshore havens. This week it has been uncovered by a Channel 4 News investigation that in the 2015 General Election, the Conservative party refused to honestly register local and national election expenses. Political commentators from all over have alleged that the purchases made by using the money could have even contributed to the huge swing to the Tories last May, and to their albeit small majority. The smog of dishonesty currently shrouding the party has no place in British society, which ought to more keenly defend values of social justice and rewards for hard work – by Tory standards, at least. The government’s hand in such wrongdoing is making the lives of British people increasingly unsafe, and is shedding light on the Conservative party’s arguable corruption.

This isn’t the end of the Tories’ efforts to control the entire sphere of British politics. Several weeks ago, the Guardian uncovered that a police anti-extremism unit has been closely monitoring the Green party – specifically its movements within the recent local elections. The fact that the Tory party is so intent on tracking down these supposed political extremists, classing a legitimate political party as an extremist movement, is rather suspect. Surely it isn’t fair at all that the government should have such an unreasonable insight into the operations of smaller, truly innocent parties.

Only to worsen the situation, John Whittingdale’s white paper on BBC which was launched this week shows no signs of the Tories’ controversial methods of prevalence diminishing soon. The government’s intentions of controlling the news agenda of one of the world’s biggest broadcasters is somewhat worrying. The fact that David Cameron’s administration is attempting to shed mammoth influence over what citizens see and hear about politics is an abominable curbing of the freedoms of speech that our government should uphold. In addition, the BBC’s bias over the recent elections is unarguable. Anti-equality jibes are distracting from the real issue – that the BBC’s news agenda is increasingly dictated by Number 10, leading to biased, one-sided reporting.

With reports of Tory malpractice springing up all over the British media, and, to an extent suppressed, it is clear to see that the Prime Minister’s party could erode our all important democratic foundations. If there continues to be an increase in similar democracy-destroying legislation, Britain may only be running a de facto democracy in a few decades’ time. Respect for Britain’s rule of law and the enshrining of myriad liberties is disappearing as Westminster’s largest party seeks to dominate the political developments of Britain.

It seems that this is coming at a somewhat unfair price. David Cameron and his fellow Conservatives are dead set on creating a political monopoly even larger than that already given by the position of government. The most unforgivable part is that Cameron’s government is breaking the law in order to make political gains. The principles of our precious democracy, already at threat due to extremism and human rights infringements, are disappearing. Criminal activities such as election fraud makes our nation no better than Brazil when it comes to politics, something shameful of a supposedly modernised state.

It seems that the Tories’ questionable monopoly is already coming into action, however. Currently, seven police forces are investigating the Tories’ election fraud, but coverage by the media has been thin and sporadic. The lack of coverage that the story received from the BBC is appalling. If Whittingdale’s reform succeeds, the BBC agenda will be governed by those in parliament and our independent press will forever be at risk. The BBC is fast becoming disturbingly politicised, and our chances of consuming neutral political reporting may be less in the very near future.

The Conservative party’s ploys are making David Cameron’s ministry seem like that of the political drama House of Cards. But unlike Frank Underwood, Mr Cameron’s influence cannot be passed off as Machiavellian. Instead, it is simply unfair. If this were Labour, the SNP or any other political entity, I am sure that the general public would be similarly complaining. There is no bias here, just vehement defence of the moral high ground.

The future of British politics could be in jeopardy soon. Will this form of underhand politics become the norm? It is evident that the Tory party is willing go to great lengths – at points, criminal lengths – to ensure a wide spread of power. But the key message is this. A culture more horrific than that ever imagined by George Orwell is emerging, and is becoming reality. The weaknesses of British democracy are showing, and with the slyness of the Conservative party our political society is at risk of becoming irreparably damaged.

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