So, back at the start of the week I wrote about how the Labour party is suffering from the impact of its right wing contingency, a topic I’ve touched on a number of times in the past, needless to say it didn’t take long before an example emerged within the media.
I have no idea what Suzanne Moore’s politics are or any reason to suspect her Left leanings are anything other than genuine. I share her frustrations at the state of affairs with Labour and I completely accept her frustrations in the face of our onerous Tory government as genuinely heartfelt. I don’t expect or intend for my opinion to matter at all to Ms Moore but wanted to address aspects of her Guardian piece from yesterday.
To believe that statement is to ignore the machinations behind the scenes of Labour since 2007, the evidence for which is easy enough to find
I would here reiterate, as I have in the past, that I am not a Hard Left Trotskyist and I am not wedded to Corbyn’s leadership because he represents some Che Trot revolution. I did not vote for Corbyn in 2015; I thought it was a mistake to remove Ed Miliband because the party needed continuity of leadership and, with the benefit of hindsight, Miliband would have been riding home an easy winner if he were leader now.
BUT I voted for Corbyn in 2016 because I had woken up to the scale of damage being done to Labour by its Right wingers. People are not supporting Corbyn’s leadership because they believe he is the Messiah they are supporting him because he is the bulwark to those who have had the means to subject Labour to its worst damage. Not just Corbyn, Labour’s current leadership stand between Britain having a genuine opposition party and Britain having an opposition barely ideologically inseparable from the current disastrous government. For all that New Labour got right its ideology was based on the same neoliberalism that Thatcher introduced and created policies that the Tories have been so destructively exploiting since 2010.
If anyone should choose the selfless act then, for far the greater benefit of Labour, it would have to be the resignations of those MPs who represent the failed Third Way experiment because, while they still exist within Labour’s ranks and still use their disproportionate access to funding and media, they are wrecking the party and have been doing so for longer than Jeremy Corbyn’s time as leader.
Do I think a neoliberal Labour party would be as destructive in government as a Tory government? No, but then I’m reminded of the collapse of New Labour and how all those things that they introduced that the Tories would never have were undermined by the seeds of destruction in Education and the NHS. I’m reminded that, since 2010, successive Shadow Education Secretaries did not condemn the marketisation of education and did not oppose the Tories’ academisation policies, only belatedly opposing enforced academisation. New Labour saddled the NHS with PFI and really opened the door to the privatisation of the NHS. Corbyn has spoken of renationalising the NHS something, it is clear, Labour’s Right will not countenance, would never propose but might ride the tide of public opinion on. I’m reminded that those who have done the most to undermine three successive Labour leaders since 2007 are doing so because they oppose anyone who doesn’t hold their ideological standpoint and their track record is abysmal.
I can’t speak for everyone else but I’m sick of politicians and politics that say any old crap to get elected and then serve the interests of the same donor paymasters. The media have done an excellent job of ignoring or misreporting Corbyn but I wouldn’t want him to learn much of anything from Trump or Farage and to think that either of those two people are anything but on the periphery of their ‘successes’ would appear gross ignorance. From my perspective, it is the opponents of Corbyn’s leadership who are attempting to paint him as a “populist”. Labour’s membership has grown by 100,000s since 2015 and those people, like me, are ‘real’ people and what is being said sounds good to us.
As the Tories plunge Britain further into crisis expect the ‘establishment’ cries for ‘anyone but Corbyn’ to grow ever louder and vitriolic. Most people know that the current Tory mob can’t survive their own incompetence, they are ideologically incapable of correcting their errors over the EU referendum and the ‘markets’ won’t save them over the NHS as it hasn’t on trains.
Labour’s Right fear that an early general election will be called and Corbyn will lead Labour; they will be forced to accept defeat and work with Corbyn’s leadership for a Labour victory or, more likely, once again work against the Labour leadership to undermine Labour’s election chances in the hope that Labour lose again and that finally, the contingent who attract barely 5% of support within Labour, can retake control of the party, as they thought they were going to do when they pushed out Miliband in 2015. Britain needs the Tories out of government and Labour’s Right wing will sacrifice the best interests of Britain in the vain hope that they will be able to convert their access to donors’ money and a media happy to run negative stories about Labour into political power. I believe Suzanne Moore’s frustrations are misplaced but I hope we’re both wrong with our predictions for Labour.