The leadership contest for the Labour Party has attracted more than a little attention with the rise of Jeremy Corby into "second place" in the contest, if polls are to be believed. On Radio 5 John McDonnell, Corbyn's campaign manager stated people were "surprised that he got on the ballot. Utter rot. A number of MP's nominated Corbyn to allow an "anti-austerity candidate" to get a voice.
To stand up and state opposition to cuts of all kinds is easy to say if you are not going to get into power and the left know this. The Labour left, although much smaller than it used to be has re-emerged from it's ideological cul-de-sac to back Corbyn including some that should know a lot better.
Problem is this "man of the people is a typical left-wing demagogue who revels in making "principled appeals" in full knowledge that he will never have the problem of actually having to implement any of his proposals. The experience of Syrzia in Greece has shown the complete futility of that.
Liz Kendall rightly pointed out the "fantasy politics" involved as the blog Politics Home reports:
“Trying to turn Labour into some kind of Syriza or Podemos party or simply saying what we’ve said over the past five years – albeit with a leader with a different gender or a different accent – will not cut the mustard,” she told a CNBC event.
“We have faced a catastrophic defeat. We need huge change to win in 2020 and change the country.”
The centre left across Europe needed to produce an alternative narrative to the “extremist” populism offered by the likes of Syriza and Podemos, she said.
“We progressive social democratic parties have to find a credible alternative to the ever-continuing austerity, which sees people suffer and doesn’t promote jobs and growth on the one hand, and the fantasy politics of Syriza and Podemos on the other.
“And that is just as much, I believe, a challenge for the UK Labour party as it is for our sister parties right across Europe. This is a moment for social democrats and the progressive centre left across Europe: we have to find a different alternative, otherwise we will allow the extremists – whether from the left or the right – to come in.”
Then there are international issues. James Bloodworth also speaking on Radio 5 pointed Corbyn's associations with fascist and anti-Semitic organisations like Hamas.
The Daily Beast writes:
The tribune of the left, the indomitable defender of equality and decency, is also the greatest apologist for clerical fascism in the British parliament.
Corbyn indulges radical Islam, and by extension all that comes with it: the subjugation of women; the judicial murder of homosexuals in compliance with sharia law; the racism, most evident in its anti-Semitic conspiracy theories; the denial of democratic rights, the demand to create a global caliphate must bring; and the denial of religious freedom the sharia-prescribed death penalties for blasphemy and apostasy do bring with miserable regularity.
Islamism is against everything the left pretends to believe in. But in Britain and elsewhere, leftists rather than conservatives are the first to defend it.
Jeremy Corbyn led the campaign to support Raed Salah, the know-nothing, fatwa-jabbering leader of Israel’s Islamic Movement. Salah has bigotries that go back centuries, as he proved when an Israeli court found him guilty of propagating the medieval European myth that Jews baked bread with the blood of children. Without waiting for the dust to settle in the autumn on 2001, he implied that 9/11 was an inside job—carried out by Jews, naturally, who had warned their co-religionists to get out of the World Trade Center before the planes hit. He was last seen predicting that “Inshallah, Jerusalem will soon become the capital of the global caliphate,” which will end the injustice of “America, the Zionist enterprise, the Batiniyya, reactionism, Paganism and the Crusaders”—which means, if I may translate, a caliphate that will turn on the West, Jews, Christians, Sufi and Shi’a Muslims, and anyone else who does not comply with his version of Sunni Islam.
Yet when the British government tried to deport Salah, Corbyn did not join it in opposing a theocratic thug. He invited him for tea instead, and went along with Salah’s lawyer, who blamed yet another Jewish conspiracy for his client’s misfortunes.
Jeremy Corbyn is also Chair of the totally misnamed Stop the War Campaign which refuses to condemn Russian aggression in the Ukraine, won't support action against the genocidal criminals ISIS and would leave us defenceless in an ever unstable world.
Corbyn is not fit for government. His campaign is taking the Labour Party backwards to the seventies and eighties which gave rise to Thatcherism and the far-right.
We need a leader for the modern age, not a relic from the past.