A coup against Jeremy Corbyn is now underway in the Labour Party.
Some expect him to ‘do the right thing’ and stand down.
Numerous media commentators are calling for him to step aside. As are senior members of the Labour Party. As many as a dozen members of Corbyn’s Shadow Cabinet have resigned yesterday, abandoning him; this follows the calls for a ‘Vote of No Confidence’ after the Brexit vote and Corbyn sacking Hillary Benn from his team after Mr Benn was about to maneuver against him.
That the Labour Party is in crisis is obvious. But Jeremy Corbyn needs to now stand his ground. Corbyn, whatever his critics might say, has a massive mandate from Labour Party supporters and members who chose him as leader. Last year he won the leadership contest with substantial, popular, grassroots support (especially from young people); his ‘legitimacy’ therefore shouldn’t be in question.
Most of the Labour Party’s Center-Left ‘Blair-ites’ were openly upset, however, and there has been talk of a coup ever since.
The failure of the Remain campaign to win the referendum vote last week has now provided them with the moment and the premise from which to push Corbyn out of the picture and take the party back to its former outlook. The reason given is that Corbyn is ‘unelectable’ and if a short-notice General Election is called (in the wake of the unprecedented Brexit – for which NO ONE in Westminster was prepared), Labour has no way of winning against the Conservatives.
That might be true; and for a party that has now lost two consecutive elections and has just watched the Conservative Party’s games completely backfire and send the country into a crisis, it is not unjustified for senior figures in the party to be desperate to want a better shot at getting back into government.
The problem is that, according to most analysts, one of the major reasons the Brexit has happened is that vast swathes of the electorate are thoroughly disillusioned with Establishment politics – including the Blair-rite section of the Labour Party. Which means that replacing Corbyn (who admittedly probably isn’t going to be able to win mass support across the country) with a more slick, PR-savvy Establishment figure isn’t any kind of guarantee for success anymore.
Vast numbers of Brexit supporters last week had no idea what the EU does or doesn’t do for Britain, but were conducting a broadly anti-Establishment vote.
And yet these Labour MPs now moving against Corbyn are essentially proposing to remove their anti-Establishment leader from the equation.
And, in any case, you might suspect the Referendum result is merely an excuse. As Labour’s Diane Abbot, a long-time friend of Corbyn’s, told the BBC today, ‘They have been planning this for months’.
It is also worth remembering that the Chilcot Report on the Iraq War is about to be released in a couple of weeks – after which point, that section of the Labour establishment might find it impossible to move against Corbyn’s leadership, given the potential PR damage the report could do to the party’s Blair-era establishment figures.
Beyond this, blaming Corbyn for the unprecedented numbers of Brexit supporters in many of the traditionally Labour-supporting areas is highly questionable. They seem to be blaming him for not campaigning enthusiastically enough. But Corbyn being lukewarm in his Remain campigning isn’t what cost the Remain campaign the vote: it was all the ridiculous, over-the-top scaremongering and propaganda that many of the campaigners engaged in.
And which Corbyn kept well away from.
In essence, Corbyn has been more true to his principles and his supporters than to the party establishment. As someone who was already known to be critical of the EU, if he had suddenly turned passionately pro-EU just because Westminster was broadly engaging in concerted pro-EU campaigning, he would’ve been (1) betraying his own beliefs, (2) appearing insincere to his supporters, and (3) having to get into bed with some of the very same figures who have been his political enemies and detractors.
What Corbyn DID do during the referendum was to be bluntly honest.
He was in fact the most honest voice in the entire business. He openly said that he was critical of the EU and that the EU needed major reforms – but that he was nevertheless in favour of Britain staying in the EU, where it could still influence and have a say in those reforms.
Unlike all of those who were excessively propagandising, glossing over all of the EU’s flaws and threatening an apocalypse if Britain was to leave, Corbyn kept it honest and simple.
He didn’t patronise voters, didn’t lie to them, didn’t try to scare them – he simply offered his own unbiased, unexaggerated opinion of the European Union and Britain’s place in it.
Essentially, he addressed the voters like grown-ups: while everyone else seemed to be addressing the voters as if they were all children. He said, in his usual, downbeat manner, that the EU was about a 7 out of 10: it needed improvement. But that Britain should stay in it.
But being the plain-speaking sort of politician he is, he didn’t get drawn into all the overwrought drama or exaggerated language – and he probably considered it all a little gross. Of course he kept his distance – it was an overblown pantomime that he saw was headed towards a national crisis. And moreover, it was a Tory crisis, made by the Tories, and not something he would’ve felt able to be a natural part of.
But through all of this madness that has been going on in this country, Corbyn stayed true to his nature and to his grassroots supporters in the Labour Party – by remaining objective, speaking honestly, and not engaging in all the games and misinformation, nor engaging in all the brainwashing going on on both sides of the referendum. He was even – perhaps in-advisedly – brutally honest about immigration during one of the interviews in the days leading up to the vote. He told Andrew Marr on the BBC that there could be no cap or upper limit on immigration in the EU.
He could’ve lied to the voters about that – which is precisely what the Leave/Brexit campaign was doing all throughout the debates, using the plebs’ hate of foreigners to win support and pretending they could stop immigration – but he didn’t: he just told the truth.
And now, while his opponents claim that Corbyn’s lack of involvement caused a deficit in support for the Remain campaign, shouldn’t we also ask whether, in fact, Corbyn’s straight-talking might’ve actually prompted lots of voters to choose Remain?
How do they know who influenced what?
After all, a lot of people might’ve been much more convinced by Corbyn’s ‘I give the EU 7/10, but we should stay in’ than by other campaigners’ ‘The EU is Beautiful, we’ll all die if we leave!’
Which is not to say that Hillary Benn and the others are wrong. They may well be right. There is certainly evidence to suggest that vast swathes of the electorate are probably too stupid and ill-informed to have someone like Corbyn treating them like adults and giving them plain facts: and are probably better off with slick politicians who lie to and manipulate them into doing the right thing (or even into doing the wrong thing).
And it may turn out that Corbyn is just too honest and non-PR-savvy to succeed in this country and modern politics.
But his lack of false, slick salesman-like veneer is one of the things that has made him so popular and so trusted among those who did vote for him. And he owes it to his very large number of supporters – those who so enthusiastically voted him into this leadership – to stand his ground and try to stay in his position, even as that position is being threatened from within the party.
Because what his Labour Party opponents are now doing – as justified as it might be on some level – is actually anti-democratic: regardless of their good or bad intentions, they are trying to go against the wishes of the many thousands who voted for Corbyn and to impose their own will instead.
They are entitled to do that, if they think it’s the best course. But Jeremy Corbyn is also entitled to stand his ground and refuse to leave – no matter how many journalists or commentators say otherwise.
Being a bit tongue-in-cheek here, but here’s a clip of the assassination of Julius Caesar; only because it comes to mind as vaguely analogous. It’s from what I believe to be the best TV series of the last 20 years: HBO’s Rome…
Obviously don’t know the state of MP’s in the U.K. Hope there are very many who are sincere – but too often, ones that show promise, are stalled by who-knows-what. Ones a year or so back (and the previous while) openly pushing for child-abuse investigations, showed some valour. Sadly, the worse thing I heard about Jeremy C, were claims he didn’t respond to an activist in Islington about this cause? My sense is, many young and fresh in, are probably truly unguarded and charged up for good. Convictions with courage. But senior ones? They’re forced to – somewhat to total – compromise. To those, I call, Globalists. (All five or so thousand of them in w.w. private and public sector) – who believe in managing us all into a new world… etc. Eugenics etc. It’s likely, rare at the top and fighting for the common struggle, are idealists in Socialism or Libertarianism? Prepared to give their physical lives for the call. Somehow they weren’t selected in their pre-MP/earlier years, and/or wised-up to the scams before caught, and/or didn’t succumb when tricked into blackmail-type behaviour? Or bowed to formal threats? And then we have a Tony Benn… (Clair Short – wasn’t she another bruiser for veritas?) On Tony: we once talked for no less than 15/20 minutes on the phone, when asked to contact his office on behalf of a charity. He picked up and we talked about the charity that he had family connections. We got on to God, Anarchy, and I seriously had to persist in ending the conversation, because it looked like he would carry on and I was embarrassed at him spending all this time on me. True unmitigated gent. What about generally? I don’t even know my who my MP is? (Me, and on the way to three-quarters of the pop.) I cannot bare any and all T.V. coverage, which more recently, have involuntarily reasons to suffer. Really come to like Jeremy, the moment he responded to the Brexit/vote. Because again, believe he believes, he’s laying down his life for liberation. Seriously. Certainly what it takes. Sense unmistakable allegiance to standing and this, the cost. And others, hear/see, here and there… (not quick/able to recall). Off the top of m’head, the louder-mouths; like Livingstone, Galloway – and suspect, like Farage, mean business (and not the biggest baddest kind). Or, as I’d be screamed at to shut-up, if posting on some of the places/do – fooling myself. They’re plants/cons etc. For me this hopeful admiration, is regardless of the specific politics they stand for. (That’s for sure). And suspicious careerist streaks, bound to misshape their integrity. Otherwise, ambivalence I have about these mainstream figures, is in regard to the serious place we’ve arrived at globally. Same goes for holding a, small L, libertarian position – if pushed. Consider more the ish. is the need for engagement as a form of convergence-building, not necessarily all about winning an argument. Outcomes emerge – can we handle this? Jump on a soap-box and rock-out the passion but – ‘divide and… order out of… Hegelian…’ This is all our enemy. One of the best things about this particular website is it naturally counters this. To – excuse the need to redeem this particular term – demonstrate a ‘third way’. Anecdotal to finish: ‘Fracking event’. Chats with someone/indi-jorno. He’d watched on Waterloo Bridge, helicopter land, south. G8 had finished and Mr Cameron had arrived back. Motorcade came over bridge. Left to Westminster or right to the City? Which-a-away? OK – who knows why took a ‘right’ but my personal view is, the City of London (base) – is central-command, Globalist-world-wide. Appreciate all the comments on this post. Real and relevant. (I’m) learning and is – productive.
Boy bit of a long un. No paragraphs is me trying to sqeeze in without making a fuss.
Aware of initial enthusiasm when first elected to the post, even chimed along with some non-socialist hope. (On ‘Tap’). Then those commentators who held faith dear, turned and decried, what they considered compromises over a number of issues. Anger/betrayal. I didn’t put enough in initially, to so-care. Yet, in shabby, flat, Westminster world, Corbyns integrity shines. Not since Tony Benn have I liked a top – maybe any level – Labour bod, as much. (Possibly at all/inc. all Politicians). Oh Michael Meacher, hearing his outside Bilderberg/Watford speech. That got my cheers. But MP’s, thinking, famous ones..? Or, one party over another..? Nada-me-like. Plus, all those seniour-enough, know the ‘awake’ news and perspective. How do they deal with this?
My thought is, this ridiculous display of parliamentary cufuffle, could be the making of Corbyn and that more-proper ol’Commie guard. At least they look like they believe something with good intentions, albeit, dangerous blind-spots. Or, some might say, ‘necessary consequences’? If I could leave them – Libertarian dreaming – in some region, and not have them attempting their benign world order..?
But as for “bomb em” H. Benn, Chuka Umunna and all the pseudo lefites… worse viewing (if must), than stuffed up Tories who at least don’t so hide there smug drive. Kate Hoey, a decent sort. Briefly met years back, candid and sincere. (Reading – now/tonight – they’re after her). Perhaps we’ll be able to ‘tell’ these next weeks/months through Brexit-upshot, more than ever; Who the cardboard, sometimes right-nasty, proud careerists are – more obviously?
At best it’s about people of the people. Somehow, this imbued through experience of living it and hard to quite convincingly fake enough, not to be instinctively rumbled. Those attacked this week are shining. Coming out of this, with an uninitiated(?) counter-coup, that will sift out those who should join the Tories. Peter Hitchens rightly noted, surprisingly the strong exit-ers from both the blues and reds, have more in common than would be typically expected? Globalists – who more them? Who are ‘in’ the second division levels of that sick cult? And who isn’t? Well, if anyone, Jeremy? Will listen to his post-Chilcot speech. Let’s see how far from elite-friendly?
Forgot one…Robin Cook. Oh and that speech he made. Again, as unlikely as you get a-Globalist. Honour life and liberty lovers. Today this makes you a whistle-blower. Ones deep in the corridors of Babylon, prepared to give their lives for all peoples, over and above their temporal security, with its poxy power and trinkets. Don’t they realise if the ship fully sinks the lifeboats aren’t for them?
Yeah, interesting you mention Tony Benn – because he was pretty much Corbyn’s mentor and friend.
I do think a lot of people get carried away with their demonisation of all politicians, failing to understand that there are lots of well-meaning, hard-working politicians and MPs – including, dare I say it, some who also subscribe to what you might call a ‘Globalist’ view of evolution: not because they rabidly believe in an ‘NWO’ type construct, but because they genuinely believe that politicians need to take a more ‘global’ view of development rather than an insular, ‘village’ mentality.
People may be too obsessed with labels and categories these days, and fail to understand the complexities of politics and of even human nature itself.
But yeah, I’m waiting for Chilcot – and seeing how Corbyn navigates that, and also how all the anti-Corbyn plotters will navigate it too.
I don’t think you can tar all politicians with the same brush, there is plenty of evidence to suggest there are still a few good ones. However I disagree with a global view on government, except on issues which are truly global such as climate change, security and wealth equality. The larger the state the less real democracy we the people have, especially when that state tries to dictate across diverse regions, as with the EU, the US and even the UK. Large states can be less responsive to the specific needs of the people and the regions they represent as they are trying to find a one size fits all solution to things that can be better dealt with locally.
I agree; and what you specify – wealth equality, climate change, etc – is what I was mostly referring to. But I would add things like human rights, conventions against things like torture, environmentalism, etc. In that regard, a ‘global’ view is clearly advisable.
Unfortunately, most of our current ‘global’ activity consists of selling weapons to corrupt states, waging proxy warfare, etc.
Too bad Tony Benn passed away before being able to clarify the issue of Brexit, the issue of sovereignty and democracy, and the absolute dictatorial nature of the European Union political institutional structure. While the British vote to leave the EU may have been based on less-than-full perceptions and reasoning, the outcome has resulted in historic desire in people across Europe to obtain the truth about the EU’s origins, the originators’ true intentions (Europe-wide monetary union and control), and the meaning of true democracy. Brexit is important because it opened the long-neglected or ignored debate on perhaps humanity’s greatest challenge: record wealth inequality and the wars (military and financial) initiated by those whose lust for power, wealth and control seem unconstrained by any form of morality.
I entirely take your point, Jerry, and mostly agree. I will say, however, that in terms of wealth inequality and ‘the wars’, I’m not sure the EU is the issue there.
The British elite/establishment, politically and especially in finance, is – from what I understand – far more corrupt, just as in America.
And it wasn’t the EU that invaded Iraq and destabilised the Middle East.
Professor Danny Sheehan’s lecture describing the U.S. “Deep Sate” complete with flow chart provides the important to understand history behind the establishment of the European Union – the United States of Europe.
Thanks Jerry. I already read that post when you posted it – but I’m sure lots of others haven’t had a chance to yet.
Personally I think Jeremy should not only remain but he should clear out the party of all the blairite back-stabbers. They can then sculk off and start their own party and face the reality in an election of just how unpopular they are with the electorate. For me it’s not just that they are still promoting the blairite policies but they are now in full-blown protection mode of the man that took us into an illegal war. As you thankfully pointed out the Chilcot report is due out very soon and although it will not be nearly as critical of what happened as we had hoped it will have a serious impact non the less. In fact Corbyn is likely to take a clear stand against Blair and the Iraq War and will have the opportunity in parliament, as leader of the opposition, to speak about the report. The blairites are now running scared and using the referendum results as the excuse to prevent him doing just that. Although as Diane Abbot said, I suspect this has been planned for months, possibly before the referendum date was even announced.
Yeah, it’s definitely been planned a while ago. What people also keep forgetting is that – prior to the 2015 election – the same people were also talking about a last-minute coup to force out Ed Milliband and have someone else lead the party in the General Election: so this sort of manuever is just what they do.
Reblogged this on TheFlippinTruth.