Now, much too late, the calls are going out for a ‘Progressive Alliance’ to win the snap election, or at least limit the damage.
There was a chance for this early last year. Ideally late 2015. But Corbyn blew it playing Mother Teresa to Daesh. With the help of the SNP and Greens in the Commons, Labour could have had the Tories on the rack throughout 2015/16, and with the further help of European progressive parties would have won the fatal referendum. As the biggest progressive party in Europe, it was Labour’s clear duty to lead such a movement, and it failed miserably under Corbyn’s leadership.
All too late
The truth is more that Corbyn chose the wrong battlefields from the start, and decided to make enemies rather than friends. The ‘constructive critique’, which was aired even before the General Election, was an alliance of the progressive forces gathering support across europe to fight the myth of ‘austerity’. Instead of seizing this opportunity to prove the general appeal of his politics, he gave way to pressure from his 6th-form agit-prop society, and defined himself by his parochialism, semi-mystical faith, and lack of vision.
And neither does he display any sense of the need for a wider alliance of progressive parties. On the whole, village-green pacifist Fabianism just about sums him up.
He isn’t too radical, he is not radical enough. Replacing NU-Labour with Nu-Age Labour is not progress.
Naturally the bizarre campaign continues against the BBC by the ‘Corbynites’ who in fact need it most.
The BBC is not to blame for Corbyn’s isolationism and poverty of imagination. He is. But that will not prevent the Pussyfoot Left from launching a campaign of hate and lies against the BBC in solid alliance with Rupert Murdoch and the rest of the unregulated, foreign-owned, tax-avoiding billionaire gutter sheets.
Meanwhile, predictably enough, Brexiteers are squealing about having to endure an election. ‘There’s far too much politics!’ is the latest rallying cry.
They obviously thought June was the last time they would be asked to make up their minds about anything. That all that bothersome voting was now over and the businessmen could be allowed to get on with running their lives for them.
I don’t expect them to play much of a role in future elections. Their reactions now show that the end of democracy was what they wanted all along.
The Daily Mail has branded anyone who asks questions about Brexit as ‘Saboteurs’.
In an age when most words mean their opposite, what else is to be expected?
This election is a Brexit Loyalty Oath, as used by fascists throughout history. As even the most moderate commentators have noticed.
‘I try to avoid glib use of F word. But ‘Crush the saboteurs’ is the language of fascism. The Mail has form.’ Michael White.
Posted by biginabox on April 20, 2017
I’m hugely confused. Only lunchtime, Corbyn was bragging about how both the Labour party membership and the electorate were as opposed to bombing Daesh as he is. All the polls said so, apparently. And since the duty of MPs is to act on the wishes of the electorate, and party leaders to ensure they do, then it was Corbyn’s clear duty to call for a Whip and ensure that Cameron’s bill was defeated, or at least opposed with extreme prejudice. If he was that worried about the ickle kiddies, then obscure niceties of ‘parliamentary liberty’ should take second place – and everyone would understand.
A matter of minutes later he allowed all his enemies in the PLP a free vote, giving Cameron’s bill a green light, and betraying both the membership and the public. Is this part of a cunning tactical masterplan? Or is he just a bungling spineless fraud?
Either he merely surrendered (like a good pacifist) to the PLP, in which case he’s no Leader. Or he wasn’t as sure about his support as he let on, in which case he’s just another dodgy politician.
Party leaders exist to ensure that MP’s represent the electorate. If Corbyn was sure it supported him, he should have enabled its wishes in parliament. If he wasn’t, he’s been doing a lot of lying and is in deep trouble with his disciples – if they’re bright enough to know when they’ve been betrayed – and with the electorate. Not bad going for a politician barely in the job a month.
Along with other anaesthetics, Corbynistas keep chanting ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’. But it was fired in one, the same’s true of Corbyn.
Posted by biginabox on November 30, 2015
If he was as concerned about human life as he claims, and actually believes his own propaganda, Jeremy Corbyn would whip the PLP without hesitation over allowing Daesh off the hook. And if that caused a historic split in the party, so much the better for him. A complete purge of the Blairite baggage would allow the long-overdue formation of a truly radical party eager to forge a massive continental alliance able to confront the horrors of Consumerism with appropriate firepower. Which is what I foolishly imagined would be the first thing on Corbyn’s to-do list. Instead, I hear he has not even met the leader of the SNP.
But he doesn’t seem to have the imagination or vision. He is apparently happy to carry on fighting the sterile battles of the past, to Jeremy-mander any action against blatant genocide, and for the root cause of the terrorist disease to live while refusing even to treat the symptoms. He is more concerned with protecting ISIS than fighting TTIP
He’s shaping up to be a Paper Tiger. But since all pacifists are reactionaries, that is only natural.
Posted by biginabox on November 30, 2015
Sorry to have to do the media’s homework for it, but Corbyn’s voting record shows that he did not even approve the UN liberation of Kuwait. So like all fundamentalist pacifists he is quite happy with the doctrine that Might is Right, and that the most powerful force should be allowed to overcome any neighbours it requires for its purposes. And that we should just ‘mind our own business’. He is quite happy to give a green light to superpower domination of the world. Only in this case, one of the superpowers would be Daesh.
Corbyn seems to think that he is ‘learning from the past’, when in fact he is repeating the classic common error of mistaking the current war for the last one. He seems to believe that Daesh are a sovereign state like Iraq (but not Kuwait) which the dastardly West seeks to overthrow for its own nefarious purposes. It is nothing of the kind. And while it has to be defeated economically and spiritually, it also has to be defeated militarily. It is not its religion or ‘ideology’ which gave it the auru of invincibility so irresistible to the alienated of all ages and religions, but its easy military conquests. When they end, potential Daeshniks from the alienated and hopeless classes will doubt their messiah. And so in fact, airstrikes would ultimately help to make Paris and London safer. Despite the fact that in the next day or so, Daesh will almost certainly announce that should Britain join the air-campaign against them, they will retaliate against London, or a British target.
When the Daesh fantasy of its own banana republic is in the dust, its disease will still be at large, and it will adapt to do its worst. But it will do that anyway. Allowing millions to be imprisoned in a vast insane concentration camp is not the answer to europe’s security problems.
Europe will be even safer when trillions are spent on the devastated countries, as should have happened in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya (and the Soviet Bloc). Which would be the economic part of the solution. And even safer when the ultimate root-cause of ultra-alienation and fanaticism is eradicated, and the spiritual solution implemented. But nobody much, especially Corbyn, is prepared yet to even think about eradicating Consumerism. If he was, he might get a real following, not just the desperate and obedient.
Posted by biginabox on November 23, 2015
As the Facebook frenzy of the last 3 weeks has shown, Corbyn’s worst enemies are his most fanatical disciples, who have no concept of critical analysis, and react like spoilt brats when their hero is subjected to routine media scrutiny – or any serious questioning. This Labour party has to be more self-critical, not less. The technology demands it. Whether Corbyn is light-footed enough to survive depends on how much he believes the hype of his disciples, and how little he rises to the media bait and throws tantrums when called nasty names.
If he can start a genuine debate rather than provoke knee-jerk anti-politics, then Labour may stand a chance of power, but only in co-operation (or even coalition) with other progressive parties. If Labour tries to take all the glory, boundary changes alone will defeat them.
But even then, the main legacy of Corbyn’s bedside manner may be a change in the tone of politics across the spectrum for at least a generation. All politicians will have to adopt his style to a certain extent.
Being the first suitless party leader is a start. Who will be the next to get informal? In an age when style is as powerful as substance, this is not as trivial a question as it sounds. And in any case, Corbyn’s main weapon so far has been his style, his policies are still unformed, as they always are at this stage of proceedings. But since he and his deputy disagree about major issues, and he will be forced to rethink his European policies inherited from Tony Benn, the final Labour platform will not be the one a lot of people voted for.
Bizarrely for a modern socialist, Corbyn (like UKIP) seems to still believe in the existence of the so-called ‘sovereign state’, not realising that it died as a coherent political entity over a generation ago with the advent of global communications, and was only ever a bi-product of the steam engine.
The first thing Corbyn will have to do is stop telling lies like “…the prime minister will soon again be asking us to bomb Syria. “.
Daesh is not ‘Syria’. It is a genocidal invasion of Syria and Iraq – ‘sovereign states’ according to Corbyn.
This Stop The War Coalition terminology is as transparent as it is perverted, and will force a U-turn, or lead Corby-Labour up a blind alley, where it will be seen as indifferent to the mass persecution which is creating refugees, and which can only be stopped with military action, and which would not have existed on this scale had decisive action been taken when needed.
If Corbyn insists on playing the Mahatma, he will also lose the respect of the British people, who do not like to sit back and watch the slaughter of millions.
He needs to ‘open his mind’ to preventing the genocides by Daesh and Assad which drive people from their homes.
Not talking about them, doing something about them. Not watching genocide, but stopping it. There is a time to fight, as the Chartists knew.
‘By moral force if we may. By physical force if we must’.
Daesh don’t listen to moral force.
Posted by biginabox on September 13, 2015
A great day for Labour, electing its most socialist leader since Kier Hardie. And drawing in masses of young people eager to fight the obscenities of Osborne’s fundamentalist Consumerism. The politics of Hope is alive, especially for those in London terrified for their homes. A London Labour Mayor would reassure millions, and pave the way for other cities to fight the property pirates.
But the most interesting contribution so far is from the SNP, and it’s not as fraternal as it needs to be, given that on paper, there isn’t a sheet of political Bronco between CorbyLab and the SNP. And that between them, they could cripple the government in the Commons.
“ However, the reality today is that at a time when the country needs strong opposition to the Tories, Jeremy Corbyn leads a deeply, and very bitterly, divided party. Indeed, if Labour cannot quickly demonstrate that they have a credible chance of winning the next UK general election, many more people in Scotland are likely to conclude that independence is the only alternative to continued Tory government.
“In the meantime, it is clearer than ever that the only credible and united opposition to the Tories, north and south of the border, is the SNP.”
If the SNP won’t join with Tom Watson & Jerry Corbyn its ‘progressive’ credibility is blown. As is any reputation for political pragmatism. And it has to be remembered that the main reason for SNP popularity was the unpopularity of NuLabour in Scotland. Without that collapse Labour would probably have won the last two general elections. In a political sense, Nicola Sturgeon is the bastard child of Tony Blair.
With a decidedly anti-Blairite Labour in Scotland, will Sturgeon see sense and work with Corbyn, or allow the SNP to be eroded by an exodus of the same Labour exiles which put it in power?
The next interesting thing will be the announcement of Shadow Chancellor, which is where he will really put his cards on the table. John McDonnell would be the uncompromising choice.
See also. 2015 Election Tips
Posted by biginabox on September 12, 2015
‘Refugees’ not ‘Migrants’
‘Migrants’ are people who turn up at Heathrow and Gatwick with papers, suitcases and letters from their cousin in Leamington Spa. These are refugees. They are not ‘migrating’ they are desperately seeking refuge from war and chaos. ‘Migrants’ poisons two groups with one abuse of language. Sanitising the deperate plight of one, and criminalising the legal aspirations of the other. The Xenophobe’s dream-word.
‘Migrant’ is tabloid terminology designed to muddy the waters. Which is useful since the tabloid lie of Benefit Britain is clearly a major factor in creating the refugee crisis at Calais in the first place. Their campaign to sell this lie was bought by desperate refugees across the world, directing them here on a fool’s errand – and giving the tabloids another tribe of witches to burn at the stake. Which in return boosts sales of their hate sheets.
A clear case of how the tabloid economy manipulates reality in its own interest.
Send Them Back
Seems to be the prevalent attitude of the British government and people. Send them back to where? To camps in the hellholes they fled? Where they can be concentrated for the convenience of the tyrants they were trying to escape? After all, they’re running away, so they must be criminals, right? Or undesirables or troublemakers of some kind. Why else would someone be chasing them out of the country? And by chasing them back, we’d merely be upholding the laws of places like Eritraea and Syria, right? Upholding the law is a moral position, obviously. So it is obviously more ‘moral’ to ship refugees off to death camps than give them sanctuary and tempt more people to break the law by seeking refuge from war. This is essentially David Cameron’s line. He is trying to save their souls.
‘Smug’ is the one word which most completely describes the British attitude to the life and death struggle of the refugees. Cowering behind the Nanny English channel, dumping the responsibilities for its wars on the poorest countries in Europe. It’s as if 3 decades of Thatcherism has completely purged the concept of Sharing from British culture. Germany is Europe’s moral leader now.
Just The Start
There is a widespread delusion that this is just another ‘humanitarian emergency’. And that after a bit of media time and UN tinkering it will go away, like the Vietnamese Boat People. A failure to grasp that this time the global country-machine is bust. The validity and integrity of many nations states has been completely destroyed by war, economic devastation, corporate manipulation, cheap airfares, and instant mass global communications. And a multiple mass exodus on this scale is the result, and there is no reason to assume it will stop of its own accord or in the foreseeable future.
The petty bureaucratic term ‘migration’ completely masks the scale, horror, and nature of what’s happening, which is completely un-precedented. The global transcontinental exile of entire populations. A mass exodus of refugees on a scale and range unseen in a thousand years. Not even the devastation of the Japanese invasion of Manchuria displaced as many people as widely. The movements of the past were limited by the brevity of the disasters driving them. The current military and economic disasters have no foreseeable end – and neither do the climactic ones on their way.
Posted by biginabox on September 3, 2015
Plans to try out in London the Parisian scheme which allows cyclists to turn left at red traffic lights has been backed by the Government. Sanity at last. How many of the cyclists killed in London this year were jumping red lights? (none) Most are killed while being passed by speeding traffic, especially at left turns. Time to explode the myth that queue-jumping is either dangerous or irresponsible. Even if it isn’t very British.
The fact that crossing a red is a decision means it is the safest time. Only those who accidentally jump red lights are in danger. Which is very few, according to the accident statistics.
If drivers did not behave like Formula 1 boy-racers on a starting grid, cyclists would be safe at green. Until then, the safest time to cross is when traffic is stationary, or non existent. When the lights are red and the junction box clear, in other words.
It has also been pointed out today that the law gives right of way at a junction to pedestrians, which is not widely known. And that lights are there to control vehicles because they are the main danger. The moral argument is obvious and overwhelming. That cyclists are no more protected than a pedestrian and should therefore have right of way over vehicles.
As noted previously.
Posted by biginabox on August 12, 2015
The Jeremy Corbyn campaign has reached a decisive point. Putin’s regime has endorsed him as their preferred candidate for Labour leader. How Corbyn deals with this kiss of death will have a critical influence on his campaign.
Cosying up to Putin would be fatal. He could talk his way out of his statements on Hamas and other organisations on humanitarian grounds, but Putin is different. It is vital that Corbyn now realises it is possible to reject both corporate machines; The Kremlin Tweedledum and the Pentagon Tweedledee he has been fighting for decades. In fact, it is obligatory for a genuine progressive to do so.
Kissing the arse of the Butcher of Groszny and Minister for Homophobia will lose Corbyn countless votes. If he is to nurture the hope he has come to represent, and form the broad progressive alliance needed to gain power, Corbyn has to radically change a decrepit British political culture in four years. This does not mean playing Moscow off against Washington and ending up as the messenger boy.
Posted by biginabox on August 12, 2015
The Kids Company Affair graphically illustrates the failure of Dickensian, charity-driven welfare.
Camila Batmanghelidjh never intended to run a charity, the point of Kids Company was that it provided a model for effective child welfare which the state should adopt. Much as the National Health Service was based on the model of the Tredegar Medical Aid Society.
Charity stinks of charity. If society creates destitute children, its taxpayers should be prepared to pick up the bill, as in civilised societies. Unfortunately, Britain is currently an irresponsible, sulky, childish, child-hating culture, with the motto ‘Stuff You Jack, I’m All Right’. This is merely the latest condemnation of the charity culture which now sees the obscene spectacle of organisations competing with each other, and spending vast amounts of money on advertising campaigns.
Kids Company ran on a shoestring. It was refused a reserve fund by successive governments. When the private funder who had promised to match the government’s £3M reneged in the wake of allegations os sexual abuse, it had no option but to close. The truth is that it has been shamelessly exploited by David Cameron to gain political credibility, but its logical conclusion, that Britain hates its young people, is too near the knuckle for this government especially, who are doing more than any to smother the lives of the young under a massive burden of debt.
It is surely now time for a National Youth Service, to guard the interests of the young from the property speculators and other Gradgrinds trying to domesticate them from birth.
There are a smattering of organisations now which understand the genuine needs of young minds and bodies, and which are fighting a losing battle against the rod-wielding gutter press, determined as ever that pain should always be available as a means of controlling youth. But they can never hope to succeed while they rely on random patronage, and for as long as their methods and ideas remain unmonitored and largely untested.
Posted by biginabox on August 6, 2015