The word “Democracy” is tossed around a lot these days. Sometimes it produces outcomes that you like, sometimes it doesn’t, but overall it’s a decent idea. But for it to be effective we need a strong opposition to hold the government of the day to account, and right now we don’t seem to have one.
Now at this point I should probably make clear that I am not a Momentum activist, I’m not a Labour member either. But when Corbyn won his leadership campaign I actually found some things to be excited about. His win represented a shift away from the disastrous foreign policy of the Blair era. He wants to scrap the immoral and wasteful Trident programme. Most importantly, thousands of people previously detached from British politics were finally asked for their opinion, and party membership swelled. Was this the beginning of a wonderful new era of politics?
Well not quite. It’s all been downhill from there. Every good opportunity to embarrass Theresa May, like the national insurance U-turn last week, is wasted. Labour consistently struggle in the polls, as much as 17% behind the Tories. Jez is a complete PR disaster. Election results too just haven’t gone his way. Vote share plummeted and almost all of the by-elections, and Copeland was lost to the Tories. When an unpopular government gains a seat from the main opposition party, maybe it’s about time to wake up and realise that somethings going wrong?
If you want to actually change things for the better, you need to win. And if you want to win, then you have to win the trust of most of the electorate, by challenging the government on the issues that matter. Just speaking at the odd Momentum rally isn’t going to cut it I’m afraid. I’ve no doubt that Jeremy is a decent bloke, but the man couldn’t run a bath. Even Tim Farron with his 9 MPs seems to be more organised, for Christ’s sake.
It’s been fun Corbs, we’ve had some good times. We’ve cried and we’ve laughed (mainly laughed to be honest), but everything must come to an end eventually. It’s time to step down old boy, while there is still a United Kingdom left for us to save.
A Weary Comrade