Let’s talk about Jeremy Corbyn

Posted by The Skibbereen Eagle | June 30, 2017 0

Some friends across the political spectrum have asked “Am I now a Corbyn supporter?” It is NOT a question I would ask myself.

I’ve always been a Labour supporter – it’s a movement not a person. Corbyn has gained respect especially by getting young people to vote and of the votes cast 17% were for parties other than Labour or the Conservatives – in 2015 it was 35% so we are back to a clear two party choice with the electorate realising votes for the Limp Dems, Kippers and the Green Egos are wasted. So that has been a real achievement but the question remains, is it May or Corbyn who has made Labour the serious Opposition? Labour has lost elections in 2010, 2015 and now 2017. At the next GE, which I suspect will be before Xmas, it must be the alternative government and convince the country it is worthy of their trust. It is also true that many of the youth vote Labour has picked up is a vote against the self harm of Brexit and young people’s futures being stolen by an older generation who want the world to stop – a promise which cannot be delivered.

We have been lucky this time with a political opponent who has been particularly arrogant and patronising, an inept and insincere campaigner and indeed she has been unlucky in not being able to keep the electoral debate on her preferred terms. We have also been lucky in the electorate seeing this GE as unnecessary and cynical. The story of our Party over the past seven years has been a total disaster which has betrayed the British Electorate and our failure has allowed others to inflict great damage on British Society, on the Union, on our country’s standing in the world and on our economy where debt has doubled and the trade deficit stands at £192 Bn a year. That deficit itself gives the Great Lie to the post colonial Empire guff spouted by the Brexit charlatans like Johnson and Gove: Britain actually makes very little the rest of the world wants and has productivity way below that of its major competitors. How the EU by opening access to a Single Market of 600 million and allowing Britain to sell goods, services and their labour without restriction has hampered British competitiveness has never been explained in the torrent of Brexit lies which Jeremy suggests must now be respected.



Next time we will be facing a different election where Labour must set the agenda and win on its own merits. We must fight to win and not unlearn the hard lessons we have learnt in the past when the country did not support us. For the record I have never voted or stood in the UK or Ireland for any party other than the Labour Party and never encouraged anybody to cast their vote for any other party.

Many Corbynistas who have only recently supported the Labour Party, come from the failed politics which are neither Democratic or Socialist and feel they should shout down their opponents with a large dollop of personal abuse. In their tradition of “Democratic Centralism” once a vote is taken there are no minority viewpoints and everybody need to toe the Party Line.  I have never made personal comments about Jeremy. I have no personal animus against him and always saw him as part of the broad church of the Labour movement which should embrace a diversity of views within a commitment to the Democratic Socialist principles on which Labour is founded. My objections are about his abilities as leader, the narrow range of people who he has surrounded himself with, his association with people who do not share the democratic principles of the Labour Party, who have sought to undermine Labour and who have campaigned and stood against the party. As an Irish person I have found particularly problematic his long association with the crypto-Fascists of Sinn Fein / IRA who undermined the NI Civil Rights movement and without any democratic mandate took it upon themselves to kill Irish people who stood in their way including their criminal “fundraising” and criminal activities which are still toxic today. Furthermore he has a long history of aligning himself with homophobes and anti-Semites whose views he has neither criticised nor challenged.

Former London Mayor Boris Johnson speaks at the launch of the Vote Leave bus campaign telling the BIG LIE

I am glad 51 MP’s defied Corbyn on Brexit. Looks like he had better get used to dealing with @jeremycorbyn style @johnmcdonnellMP style rebels in Parliament. Corbyn, the man who voted against Labour so many times he warrants his own Guinness Book of Records entry. Corbyn has no right seeking to dictate the same Hard Brexit to the nation that May wanted, he has zero mandate for any Brexit. While he and McDonnell pretend to lead Labour the party will never win again. The nation needs a real opposition to Brexit and the Tories, it does not need a throwback to the 70’s & 80’s in thinking with no vision or leadership skills for the whole nation. Speaking just for one section does not make a party speaking for the many. It does not need Jeremy Corbyn sacking a pro-immigration front bencher so that he can support the Tory right on hard Brexit.

Labour Party manifesto in 2017 said: ‘We will scrap the Conservatives’ Brexit White Paper ….. and have a strong emphasis on retaining the benefits of the single market and customs union.’

I think it has to be recognised that Jeremy, with his long time opposition to the EU, played a poor hand in not fighting the Leave campaign effectively before the Referendum and indeed obstructing it. His office blocked and refused to co-operate with the IN Campaign, a major strategic mistake. The Silent Brexiteer did not convince the public that he was not harbouring 1970’s Bennite anti-European sentiments in his heart.

So now it is Labour party policy to leave the single market, to the degree that you’re sacked if you oppose this. I do not wish to idealise the ‘single market’, but since our narrow, advisory decision to withdraw from  it was founded upon evidence free xenophobia, and since no one currently has a plan to stop our exit from it undermining our trade and tax revenues (and so our public services) why is Labour simply accepting the nationalist, atavistic logic of Brexit? There is no “Good Brexit” and the most maddening “Leave” campaigners were the knuckleheaded so called “Hard Left” with their clichéd claptrap about neo-Liberalism, Globalisation, anti-Capitalist and anti-NATO rhetoric, the same views which leave the voters cold and have been roundly rejected by the electorate time and again. The same views which have seen the hilariously and dishonestly titled TUSC and Left Unity donate their deposits to the Chancellor, every single time they have stood in those “bourgeoisie” elections they don’t really believe in.

Much of the youth vote Labour thankfully picked up in the GE was a vote against Brexit and their futures being stolen. Brexit, be it “soft” or “hard” is a mess and years out we are seeing the economy stagnate, sterling tank, prices increase and inward investment slow. Stop the world and let me get off is not a practical policy and that’s what has come from the Kippers and is the basis of Tony Benn’s 80’s alternative strategy (targeting key industries, tariff barriers, direct State investment, end open markets) which Corbyn keeps harping back to. It would have been a disaster then and even more so today. All Viscount Stansgate’s vapid wittering produced in reality  was “British World Beater” Concorde jetting millionaires across the Atlantic at taxpayers’ expense and Norton Motor Bikes which was sold to India for £1. There is no Left Wing virtue in supporting a bonfire of rights, a shrinking economy and public services and the untrammelled Neo-Liberalism Brexit will lead us towards. There is no progressive Labour agenda in the old stealing the future for young people.

I am reminded of the words of Sir Gerald Kaufmann’s family when this great Labour fighter died last year: “Sir Gerald dedicated his life to serving those who he believed would benefit most from a Labour government and Labour values in action. He believed that policy and principle without power were simply not enough to deliver the better life that he fought for on behalf of his constituents for almost 50 years.”

The British people want a progressive Labour government which has a realistic and forward looking programme which relates to the reality of their lives and the reality of the world today and is actually deliverable. I don’t believe Jeremy has the background, skills or trust in critical areas to gain their endorsement and deliver that programme. And a reality check, Labour has lost the 2017 General Election.  We are now faced with a Bung Parliament with a Tory minority government which will rely on ten deeply reactionary and regressive DUP MPs to secure a tiny overall majority in the House of Commons. It is time for Labour once again to rebuild and become the alternative Government for Britain in Europe that the country so desperately needs.

The voters left us with a clear message from General Election 2017, they do not want Theresa May or Jeremy Corbyn as Prime Minister. Period.

The Skibbereen Eagle

In 1898, to widespread bemusement, a small Provincial Newspaper in an equally small town in the South West corner of Ireland sonorously warned the Czar of Russia that it knew what he was up to and he should be careful how he proceeded for “The Skibbereen Eagle” was wise to his game and in future would be keeping its eye on him! It is doubtful that Nicholas II, Emperor and Autocrat of All the Russias, even noticed the Eagle’s admonitions but as history soon proved he should have paid closer attention to the Eagle’s insightful opinions!

Today, powered by its readers and contributors, from its cyber eyries in Ireland and the centres of the Irish Diaspora The Eagle casts its Cold Eye on Life and Death and much in between.
The Skibbereen Eagle

Latest posts by The Skibbereen Eagle (see all)

Comments are closed.