So Tony Blair has watched his Peace to the Middle East project fall by the wayside and, after witnessing the election of Trump, fancies he could make a Rocky Balboa comeback to British Politics (feeling safe he will no longer be considered the most despotic political figure in Western politics). John McTernan has all but run up the white flag for Labour’s right wing by declaring that there are none among them fit to have a tilt at leadership, a damning indictment.
It says much for the neoliberal zombies that a figure such as Tony Blair, with Chilcot still warm, can even suggest he would make a comeback to British politics. The last high profile public figure who demonstrated a similar level of unmitigated arrogance and lack of self-awareness tweeted a photo from his lounge of a number of yellow cycling tops. It says more that, since his retirement from British politics, not a single right wing Labour MP has achieved even close to the public recognition or political influence that the ghost of Tony Blair has.
When Ed Miliband was undermined and chased from the leadership position and the pretenders to the crown lined up expectantly, only to have their schemes dashed by some genuine Labour politics, who could have predicted that those hopefuls and those who had been rumoured to stand but didn’t would be shown as completely inadequate in just over a year. How quickly political careers can be put into perspective. For all their ability to tarnish the Labour brand, undermine its democratic structures, demonise its membership and generally piss away Labour’s prospects at the next general election, Labour’s right wing have been judged by their own cheerleaders as not actually up to the job of leading Labour or of winning a general election or of leading Britain.
Of course, Blair throwing his hat in the general direction of the ring will give the media another excuse to ignore Jeremy Corbyn or to make fatuous comparisons. Think how the media ignored Corbyn during the EU Referendum campaigns, preferring to focus on the Conservative clown show. How well did that turn out and isn’t it remarkable how the media have not accepted any of the blame for the outcome of EU Referendum.
If we think back to the Labour Leadership Debacle 2016 and the speculation that Smith was a stalking horse for some super candidate who was just a bit shy, was that candidate Blair? I suspect not. Smith was a hapless candidate all of his own making, I don’t think he was anyone’s tethered goat and if there were others in Labour’s right wing who were so vain that they thought the song was about them, McTernan’s verdict must cut to the bone. The truth hurts but don’t fear, I doubt we’ll get much of that from Labour’s right wing or the media. The politico-media circus fear the current Labour leadership and will keep spinning for those whose pockets they dwell within.