The Tories are running scared of Ed Miliband

Ed Miliband is the leader of a party which, until now, I've described as the ‘least worse choice’. But now I'm fully on board.

In Thursday's speech, however, Miliband pledged to take on 'vested interests' and 'powerful forces' as he bids to lead Labour to victory in next year's general election.

There is, of course, an orchestrated media campaign lead by the Daily Mail, the Torygraph and the BBC (to Aunties' eternal shame), designed to ridicule and undermine Miliband's credibility as a leader. The fact is, however, that the Tory media has been forced into action because the Labour leader is the biggest threat to the right that we've seen for many decades. Miliband is challenging the neo-liberal consensus of the past 40 years - and the Tories (and their bedfellows) are running scared.

In his speech, Miliband said he would tackle the UK’s 'zero-zero economy' - where regular people are on zero-hours contracts, and the rich 'get away with zero tax paid'. And that will certainly resonate with the masses.

The most crucial issue for all, however, is the destruction by the Tories and the Lib-Tories of the National Health Service. Miliband talked about Labour policy to take back to its roots an NHS which is well on the road to a full privatisation that no-one voted for. If Ed has his way (and many hope he does), the NHS will end up funded in part by a clampdown on tax avoidance and by penalties from wrongders (banks and bankers immediately spring to mind).

Miliband's speech was the first indication we have yet seen of a very strong leader ('I am willing to put up with whatever is thrown at me in order to fight for you'), and Labour's leader has clearly pledged to stand up for the working man. Miliband won't be intimidated by Crosby's dog-whistle, or negative smear campaign tactics.

Labour's leader has stated quite plainly that he intends to return to the 'true soul' of his party, his frequent use of the word 'together' putting social solidarity back on the agenda, and heralding a new politics of social and economic democracy. Miliband is about politics where no-one is abandoned.