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Corbyn’s critics… May 11, 2016

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

Prospect magazine was quick off the bat in relation to the UK local and other elections. Under the heading ‘Labour is losing ground’ it had a couple of pieces. One written in advance of those events by Neil Kinnock which sounded worryingly bilious. And another from Jamie Reed, LP MP for Copeland who writes:

Yesterday, Labour went backwards in England, Scotland and Wales. Today, senior Labour figures are claiming that because these reverses are not as bad as many predicted, they somehow represent a vindication of the chaos that has engulfed the Party since the leadership election. It’s time to get real.
Whoever became Leader of the Labour Party in September 2015 was bound to be presented with a difficult task. Jeremy Corbyn’s handsome victory did not make this task necessarily any more or less tough. That said, the political judgments, operations and priorities demonstrated in the intervening period since the leadership contest have indeed made this task more difficult. Subjectively and objectively, there can be no doubt about this.

Indeed. But another thing that might have made the task more difficult was one J Reed, BLP MP for Copeland who as noted in comments under the Prospect piece:

On 12 September 2015, one minute into Jeremy Corbyn’s acceptance speech as leader of the Labour Party, he publicly resigned as shadow Health Minister giving as his reason Corbyn’s opposition to nuclear energy.[4]

Well I never.


1. makedoanmend - May 11, 2016

Funny how the anti-semitism thingy just fell off the MSM radar post election. Job done?


WorldbyStorm - May 11, 2016

+1 The idea that the BLP is a hive of anti-semitism is absurd. Not to say that unwise and unthoughtful comments weren’t made by people who should know better or that beyond that a tiny number might harbour toxic views, but the idea it was institutionally or policy wise (though note they never made that argument because it would be so utterly stupid) or even in terms of general sentiment anti-semitic was utter rubbish and it says something that it was run with so hard by some.


sonofstan - May 11, 2016

I’m sure it’s been mentioned, but during the whole thing did anyone notice that the last leader of the Labour Party was, like, Jewish?


6to5against - May 11, 2016

I’d totally forgotten that.

The other thing that seemed to get missed was that while some sections of the press was falling over itself with outrage and excitement about the supposed racism of the LP, they made no comment on the fact that the Tories were running an overtly racist campaign in London.


WorldbyStorm - May 11, 2016

Not one of those making an issue of the thing mentioned that sonofstan. But then how to explain it away?


sonofstan - May 11, 2016

Easy enough to forget Ed, I’ll grant.


Ed - May 12, 2016

Especially inconvenient since Naz Shah’s posts all happened when Miliband was leader, and she became an MP when he was leader, at at time when the Mail was presenting Miliband Sr as a creepy foreigner who hated Britain and the Sun was presenting Miliband Sr as a creepy odd-ball who didn’t know how to eat pig-flesh properly. But of course there wasn’t a hint of antisemitism in any of that. Vastly worse, and reaching a vastly greater audience, than anything Shah came out with.


2. irishmarxism - May 11, 2016

There is some analysis that hotly disputes the apparent media consensus that the elections were a disaster for Labour:


and also points out the contrived nature of the anti-semitism controversy:



3. fergal - May 11, 2016

Not exactly the same issue. Bit of a rant coming on here..Why does it matter what religion somebody is? It only matters for the bigoted ,why do progressives even get involved in such rubbish? I couldn’t care less what religion Sadiq Kahn is, surely the litmus test of a good candidate are the policies and what they do in power.
What happened to social class? Why not focus on what unites us and not what divides us, and cling to this unwaveringly?
I mean you now hear talk of ‘the homeless community’- in the US- I genuinely believe that this distracts from the class struggle and the reason for homelessness,and simply perpetuates misery.
The cul de sac of identity politics!


benmadigan - May 11, 2016

Why not focus on what unites us and not what divides us, and cling to this unwaveringly?
I have suggested the same approach for bringing on irish reunification



Ed - May 12, 2016

It was also thrown into the mix that Khan was the son of a bus driver. Fair enough for what it’s worth, but when push comes to shove I’d rather have the son of a banker who could be relied upon to take the right side when bus workers (or any other group of workers) went on strike. Wouldn’t put too much hope in Khan on that front.


Sigmar - May 12, 2016

Yeah but his identity and stuff.
That’s the win here.

Past transport minister under Brown, a man who said Corbyn isn’t fit to be PM because he wouldn’t sing God Save The Queen, who thinks the current Labour leadership is likely to cause terrorist attacks in London, past leader of the Fabians.

What a list but hey look he idenfies as being religious like Ian Kyle and Dana did so that’s positive supposedly.

Does identity allow any type of right wingery to be ignored in favour of some imagined victory over other right wingers. When Sadiq is throwing Corbyn hand grenades without pins his adherence to a religion won’t come into it.

The bus drivers likely to get shafted by this new labour creature might console themselves with the thought one religiously labelled right winger can beat a union down good as an other.

When did all that get lost in the rush to talk about identity?


Ed - May 12, 2016

Let me guess, you’re our resident obsessed-about-Muslims poster, now deploying your nth pseudonym? Seriously dude, give it a rest. The writing style is unmistakable, could you just pick one handle and stick to it?


Sigmar - May 12, 2016

Why do they always have to be labelled Muslims?

Why can’t a right wing politician just be that and a good person just be that.

Why label them as Muslim? Khan won’t help bus strikers you know it but because someone thinks his having a religious identity is important then it’s a victory.

Rest shall it be given.


Gewerkschaftler - May 12, 2016

The concept ‘Muslim’ has been racialised, as the concept ‘Jewish’ was (and continues to be by the Israeli state). In Ireland this may not be a big deal but in the rest of the world the anti-Muslim / racist complex is at the core of the new/old forms of virulent racism and xenophobia.

As anti-racists we find it good when someone identified as Muslim gets elected to a powerful position for the first time. Just as a it was good to see a black President of the US.

As socialists we don’t necessarily expect much from either in terms of alliance on our side of the class war.

Identity politics are indeed extremely problematic, but we can’t wish these identities away.


fergal - May 12, 2016

Gewerks- I see your points…belonging to humanity is enough identity politics I need!


4. Ed - May 12, 2016

The Prospect line is just embarrassing, but all you’d expect from such a dreadful publication. The goalposts, they are a movin’. As soon as the predictions of electoral meltdown failed to materialize, the pundits had invented another set of criteria for branding Corbyn as a failure. Denis Staunton, who is no radical, called it right in last Saturday’s IT: the people who said that Corbyn’s leadership was a tremendous electoral drag on Labour have simply been proved wrong. That doesn’t mean he’s sure to be able to go on and win the next general election. This was a decent, sober analysis of the results from Richard Seymour:



Starkadder - May 12, 2016

“The Prospect line is just embarrassing, but all you’d expect from such a dreadful publication.”

I stopped reading “Prospect” after they did a long overview of
Henry Kissinger that failed to mention the Cambodia bombing,
Chile or East Timor.


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