Ken Livingstone: 'The Establishment' worked against both me and Jeremy Corbyn
15 December 2019, 10:22
The former Mayor of London said that "dishonest lies and smears" from 'The Establishment' worked against him - and cost Jeremy Corbyn the election too.
Speaking to Andrew Castle, Ken Livingstone said: "The establishment was desperate to prevent Jeremy and John McDonnell getting into power, because he was going to make them pay their fair share of tax."
Andrew asked: "What establishment?"
Livingstone said: "The giant corporations, you actually look, big corporations on the internet."
Andrew Castle accused him of following a conspiracy theory about 'The Establishment' trying to prevent a Labour government.
Livingstone then said: "No, I'm sorry, I had to put up with it for 38 years. The day I became the leader of the GLC, Thatcher said my plan was to impose on Britain a Communist tyranny.
"Immediately every Tory paper was running stories implying I was a Soviet agent, saying I support the IRA's bombing campaign.
"I was attacked three times on the streets because people believed all this. Literally, it just got worse and worse."
Andrew asked about whether lessons needed to be learnt from the Labour defeat.
Livingstone said: "The lessons that we need to learn that we've got to start properly regulating the media, we got to make sure lies are taken off the internet."
He explained that "billionaires" own the papers and they can print "lie after lie".
He later said: "The media coverage was appalling.
"I mean, you actually saw all the stories saying that Jeremy Corbyn proposed public spending was going to wreck our economy.
"But the truth is, if all of Jeremy's policies have been carried out, we'd still have been spending less on our public sector than France and Germany. I mean, literally, it's all been dishonest lies and smears."