OK, you can discount most of what you hear from two of those sources as propaganda. As for the polls, they may be impartial, but they have a terrible record lately of getting things badly wrong. Which would be cheering news for Labour – except that where the pollsters normally go astray is in under-estimating support for the right wing.
When people are confronted only with the personalities they seem to lean hard to the right. Show them actual policies, and they tend to prefer Labour over Tory.
It’s the policies that will truly affect our lives. But it’s the shallow celebrity game of names and faces that will determine which policies we gain or suffer from.
Which is why the Tories’ Australian strategist Lynton Crosby has insisted on making their campaign all about Theresa May. Though it’s odd to put so much trust in such a lightweight.
Even Tory columnist Dominic Lawson referred at the weekend to the promotion of May as “a cult of no personality”. The blatant attempt to make her over as a reincarnation of Margaret Thatcher is so fatuous it deserves to backfire spectacularly.
Love her or hate her – and many of those working-class voters the Tories now think they’ve won over were firmly in the latter camp – Thatcher had personality. You might have despised her principles, but you couldn’t deny she had them.
If TV debates had been a thing in her day, you wouldn’t have caught Thatcher ducking out. She’d have relished the chance to take on her opponents face to face, not shy away for fear of being shown up.
She wouldn’t have made her prime public appearance on anything as soft as the One Show sofa. And if she had, she would have insisted on talking about politics, not her shoes, or whether it was Denis who put the bins out.
In one thing she’s said – over and over again – May could be right. This may indeed be the most important election of her life. Unlike any other General Election of the past 20 years, it’s a choice between two very different directions.
And this is why the shallowness of the public discourse and the apparently foregone conclusion of the result are so galling. Because Labour’s policies are the best any major British party has put on the table for at least half a century.
Returning the railways, the Royal Mail and the water supply to public ownership ought to be vote-winners. Their energy and environment policy is outstanding, championing community-owned renewables over the profits of the big six.
Their proposed National Education Service may not sound very sexy, but it’s an interesting plan to rescue something extremely important that has been seriously messed up these past seven years. The same goes, big time, for the NHS.
All these vital public services are the very things government ought to be about. And this is where the fundamental difference lies. Labour, the Greens and most of the LibDems believe in service to the public; the Tories believe in profit.
Their only response to Labour’s policy proposals is to repeat their claim that “the sums don’t add up”. Pretty rich coming from the party which has more than doubled the National Debt, now growing at a rate of over £5,000 a second and heading towards £1.9 trillion.
Never mind, it’s all about the famous faces, isn’t it? And you won’t find the made-over May or any of her well-shod crew at the food bank.