There is much to recommend Jeremy Corbyn. He is an honest and compassionate man, he refuses to indulge in soundbite politics, he has brought many people young and old back to the voting booths, he is on the side of the unecessarily Poor, and he has routed the appalling Blairites. But the baggage he brings with him far outweighs his ability to give Britain a better future based on fresh ideas.
He brings with him an ideology rooted in the 19th century, an IS background that belongs to the 1960s, and a kneejerk support for pc causes that represent – for most ordinary voters – trendy ‘Metro’ issues of little or no importance.
The core, traditional Labour voter abhors the whole idea of EU freedom of migrant movement and open-door immigration policy; the Corbynites are wholeheartedly for it.
Those once solid Labour supporters have not been politicised towards the idea of socialism since the early 1950s; the Corbynites think they can change that.
The majority of the electorate over 35 – and beyond Labour members and activists – think the Conservative Party is going too far into Nastyland; but they believe even more strongly that socialist command economics won’t work for them. The Corbynites want to go back to it.
With or without mass media bias, history shows that Real Labour (as personified by the now reelected leader) lacks fiscal discipline and commercial perspective. The Corbynites lack any level at all of experience in commerce, and Conference has laid out sweeping plans to increase taxes across the board. Not a single speaker this last week has talked about a reasoned commercial strategy for Britain in the future.
As long as Scotland remains within the UK, and committed to the SNP, mathematically Labour cannot win a British General Election without massive defections from both the SNP and UKIP. I see no sign of either possibility; the Corbynites in turn show no sign of willingness to engage in cooperation with other Parties. Many mainstream Labour voters are, however, actively seeking out LibDems with a view to creating a realignment away from the “extremes” of Corbynism and Thatcherism.
But these are just the practicalities. There is and has to be far more to politics than the desire for power at any price: that’s what makes the process such a farcical crock at the moment.
Britain is a divided nation in the grip of diametrically opposed, criss-cross policies about nationality, globalism, social care, the State’s role, localism and education. The line-up we now face – the crew of the illiberal Mayflower Bubble versus the wide-eyed bad science of the rigid Corbychev purists – offers no solution whatsoever to Britain’s creatively constipated politics.
All they offer is a fight. Probably, in the end, to the death.
Neoliberalism and Socialism are unfit for purpose, and the Centre Ground is peopled by a bizarre suspension of the muddled, the machiavellian, and the mercenary.
We are halfway – no more – towards being rid of Brussels. We are still, however, stuck with two belief systems based on narrow interest, endemic corruption and élitist ignorance.
Only when that dual Establishment’s ideological grip on the legislature has been broken will Britain relearn the lessons of its dismal recent past, and embrace new philosophies for the future.
Take the money out of politics, dump the ideas of Smith and Marx, reject the certainty of globalism, and think about what’s best for a pack species whose success has been based on competition, cooperation, empiricism and inspiration.
All of those four qualities are – despite the euphoria of those around May and Corbyn – missing from the Party formulations on offer.
We have a long, long way to go on a journey that has barely started.