Class War Conservatism and Resistance to the Doug Ford Tories

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A Socialist Project e-bulletin ... No. 1697 ... October 30, 2018

Class War Conservatism and Resistance to the Doug Ford Tories

Jeff Shantz

The Fordist Conservative government in Ontario presents a pressing challenge to politics as usual and raises the stakes for working class resistance. Almost immediately upon taking office Doug Ford and his Tory regime have gone on an offensive targeting diverse segments of the working class. In their aggressive actions they have shown themselves to be unabashed proponents of a class war conservatism in the mold of Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Reagan, and Mike Harris, if in a particularly crass version.

Well, sometimes you get the counsel you need, when you need it. So it is that I found myself reading Ralph Miliband’s old article "Class War Conservatism" right as Doug Ford was elected... in Ontario. I lived for years in a Toronto riding bordering his brother Rob’s and have followed (and opposed) the Ford’s for awhile. Recognizing again the character of and threat posed by a boldfaced class war conservative regime makes us reconsider our whole approach to opposition, to the political conventions that while familiar will fail us against this enemy. (And make no mistake they view us as enemies and make no apologies for it.)

It is crucial to quickly get the full measure of the challenge the Doug Ford government presents, as Miliband said of Thatcher. And to meet that challenge with the fullness (of anger, boldness, creativity, militancy, and solidarity) it deserves.

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