The Corbyn Catastrophe…or The Oblivion of Unity

corbyn-arrest-rob-scottAs the British Political Establishment and their Associated Meejah go into full-blown, panic-stricken melt-down mode in a way that we haven’t seen since those few unbelievable days last September when the polls indicated that there might be a Yes vote, I want to indulge in a little Corbyn Crystal Ball gazing of my own.

From a strictly sectarian SNP perspective. for reasons that are not entirely respectable, the spectacle of Tony Blair and Co yelling all too familiar insults about the ultra left feels a little like enjoying someone else’s grief. You could take an article from any paper in the first half of September last year, and cut and paste “Jeremy Corbyn victory” over “SNP fanatics” and not even have to get a copy editor in for a rewrite.

For the last twenty years, the SNP have been engaging in a long term “replacement” strategy that has eroded the credibility of Scottish labour to a point where it scarcely even seems worth while considering “the enemy.” And one baleful effect of Labour’s existential UK crisis is the terrible temptation to keep hold of the the fixation. It’s like staring at a car accident. But now, as Andrew Tickell pointed out in the Scotsman the other week, with total dominance in both Westminster and Holyrood, it might be good for the party and the country to get past that that.

The trouble is, of course, that the dead horse in question is lying there muttering “Hit me.” The extraordinary farce of the abstention vote “against” the welfare cuts was a self-inflicted wound of quite staggering political torpor, moral exhaustion and tactical ineptitude. The Labour Party make the SNP look brilliant. The 56 of them scarcely need to turn up or even get out of bed to look like geniuses. The same is true, however, of George Osborne, unfortunately. It is not just the SNP who are fortunate in their opposition right now, and I do think there is a terrible temptation to sit back and indulge in Scottish Superiority in a way that will do us more harm than good in the long run.

However, it is someone else’s long run I want to think about. I think we need to take advantage of having a little critical distance on Labour’s crisis, as well as being in some ways ahead of the game in thinking about the previously unthinkable, to get past the Schadenfreude and onto thinking about what these islands might look like five or so years from now depending on which of a number of scenarios work out.

First, Jeremy Corbyn might win. And if he does, given the level of current hysteria, I don’t see any way in which the Labour Party holds together as a unit. The SDP would rise from the dead like an opportunist zombie, with Tony Blair and David Owen gibbering from one and same winding sheet. One difference, however, is that the gang of four would be a gang of about 200, and it would be the Labour party under Corbyn that would be left as a rump.

But would it really get that far, even if the Bennites finally won?

The Labour party has always been an amalgamation of interests, of course, a coalition of trade union pragmatists, radical intellectuals and morally supine careerists. What is called “a broad church.” What held it together was the prospect of power and a sense of possibility…that there might actually be a practical difference to be made in society. Both of those coagulants are pretty thin these days – thinner than I remember them being even in the dark days of the early eighties, even if, like in the referendum last year, we do seem to be re-running my youth in ways that are disturbingly exact.

In my defence, lots of parallels are being drawn in the “progressive” papers between the situation after the post 1979 party struggles and now. And the coincidence of a Scottish referendum followed by a Tory victory and a leadership/identity crisis in the party is obviously compelling. But the differences in the situations are at least as important as the similarities. The leadership that Michael Foot won was of a Party and a Movement that was incomparably stronger than the one that Jeremy Corbyn is seeking to inherit. And the fact that Scotland is written out of the calculations entirely is heavily symbolic. What is really different, and really unthinkable from the perspective of the cultural memory of 1979, is that soon there might not be a single political party in these islands that is capable of, on it’s own, taking power off the Tories for the occasional interregnum of comparative sanity. Then, in 1979, or 2009 the idea that the SNP might win all but three seats in Scotland in a General Election in 2015 having just lost a referendum vote was every bit as unthinkable.

Of course, if the underwhelming Andy Burnham emerges as the people’s choice, at least the Party might hang together in a grumpy and depressed kind of a way. And spend the next five years waiting for the Tories to fuck up so that they can replace them as the only very slightly less offensive face of monopoly capital. They are already hell-bent on displaying the same mean reluctance when it comes to considering the Common Good. But the Labour Party, even in the depths of Harold Wilson’s or even Gordon Brown’s instrumentalist cynicism…stood for something other than power, I seem to remember. It stood for hope. It derived energy and meaning from being, as Wilson put it it, “a moral crusade or nothing.”

All the papers say that a vote for Jeremy Corbyn is a deluded hope…but even that may well be better than the “nothing” they seem to be heading for otherwise. We broke the Labour party in Scotland, after all, and they show every sign of breaking themselves in Britain.

There are deep historical forces at work here which i might attempt to explore another time, but for now, with an eye to that “future” we all used to hope for, it may well be better that some new focus needs to be found for the radical, angry energy I feel in every part of the UK to find some kind of expression than to simply allow all belief in something like a better future to fade into cultural memory. A new, smaller party might become the focus of that energy and radicalism. But I simply can’t see that being remotely possible if anyone other that Corbyn wins. It may be that the labour party in the UK now has to choose between the slow, atrophied death that pretending there could ever be a “return to normal” that they’ve suffered in Scotland over (at least) the last ten years or so…and a radical surgical intervention right now. Explosion or atrophy. Either way, in the word of the Stranglers, “Something Better Change.”

(I somehow didn’t think a Sam Cooke analogy was tenable there!)

Yes, in this parliament, before 2020, we’re talking about creating in opposition to the Tories exactly the same expedient alliance that was being proposed before the election in support of the Labour Government that all of those of us who have been obsessively whipping the poor decrepit cuddy were hoping for. Once again, the challenge is to overcome the paradox of two parties dedicated to the non-existence of the other actually having to cooperate in the face of the “real enemy” who is currently sitting across the chamber of the Commons rather with an air of quite unbearable public school smugness written all over his pasty chops.

But this coalition would now be made of Fifty odd “real” Labour MPs, 56 SNP MPs…and whatever liberal not quite Tories the remnant of Labour make of themselves to contest the election in 2020

(Osborne had a telling line in an exchange with Dennis Skinner….that they had both now got the Labour party they’d been wishing for).

The tragedy of all this seat shuffling on might well be the deck of the Titanic as well as the Union, is that in the meantime the working people of Scotland and England and N Ireland and Wales are going to find themselves being fucked over by quite the nastiest shallowest set of swine I’ve ever seen on the Government benches, Margaret Thatcher notwithstanding.

It might be that for however long the Union lasts, or in whatever shape a constitutional settlement is hammered out over the next ten years, whether we call it A Federation or a Fare Thee Well, that what remains of practical progressive politics across the Kingdom (or Kingdoms…or Republics!) will need to be FUNCTIONALLY federal well in advance of the sovereignty negotiations. Even a new Labour Party with fifty seats. Fifty actual socialists sitting alongside, voting with, and maybe even forming coalition governments of 200 novo-liberals and 56 self-righteous Jocks, might be better than taking yet more limping steps into an oblivion of “unity”

It’s also the only way that other Union holds together that I can see. But that’s a story for another time.

Comments (36)

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  1. thomaspotter2014 says:

    Just when I thought we were all going to a grand coalition hell in a hand cart ,up you pop with a truly great analysis of WTF is going down.

    THANK YOU BIG STYLE from the bottom of my aching heart.

    All I ‘ve seen or heard lately (I.E. in the last 24 hours) is a depressingly doom laden end of the world type scenario where Blair’s middle east apocalypse is shaping up rather ominously.

    Turkey bombing PKK,Iraq,Syria,Afghanistan,Daesh’s Islamic State on an ever escalating cycle of violence and genocide.

    Just what Doctor Tony prescribed.

    America imploding with the heartbreaking racism inherent in the Western Overlords great knack of giving everyone on the planet freedom and democracy(?)except of course their own African americans?

    Too much doom and gloom for an uppity jock back fresh from the awesome Wickerman Festival in Dumfries.

    Maybe it’s time to go back to our Pagan roots.

    All this modern shit is freaking me out.

    As for Labour in distress=

    All I can say is-

    Walking on the beaches looking at the peaches.

    Cheers for making my heart soar like a hawk.

  2. thomaspotter2014 says:

    If I might add-

    If Stu and wings are the Maxim gun of analysis then you are surely the sniper’s shot.

  3. aim-reload-fire says:

    ….because the reason why Labour lost the 2015 general election was they were not left-wing enough.

    Priceless.

  4. Andy Nimmo says:

    Nail meet hammer. Brilliantly forensic autopsy of the dead carcass that is the Labour Party.
    I had a bit of an ‘on line’ spat with an Independence supporting crime writer who had posted re ‘SNP’s worrying drift to the left and the need to look aftet the wealth creators and free enterprise supporters.
    I’m afraid a bit of a red mist overcomes me when I hear the term ‘free enterprise’ so it became a tad tetchy.
    I tried to explain the difference between wealth creation – creating profit and jobs through competence and free enterprise – creating gross profits through gross incompetence and the sacrifice of jobs, without success.
    The glorification of free enterprise (neoliberalism?) I feel, will be the subject that brings about the defeat of the current regimes.
    When?
    Your guess is as good as mine.

    1. Graeme Purves says:

      Ah, “wealth creators”, that most slippery and self-serving of terms! We all create wealth in multifarious ways. What we are concerned with is the Common Weal.

    2. David Allan says:

      A truly excellent definition of the corporate term MODERNISATION – “creating gross profits through gross incompetence and the sacrifice of jobs” .

      With the addition of “greed ” the definition becomes more succinct!

      To Peter Arnott – This is a great piece which reminds me how vital forums like this and others are in informing and stimulating political debate.

      Predicting the players on the Labour political playingfield in 2016? – What turmoil Labour supporters must be experiencing! Awakened by Blair’s transplants required comments!

        1. Shen says:

          This Is Priceless, Very funny !!

        2. Kenneth G Coutts says:

          Jaw dropping, you just couldn’t make it up.
          Sounds like confound and confuse the electorate(the morons out there).
          Once again! the truth is staring everyone in the face with the neoliberal rhetoric.
          Jeremy Corbyn and his social democracy rhetoric, oooer! scaring the bejesus out of the Neoliberals.
          Not unlike Scotland with social democratic policies, although needs to do more.
          He is only one man in the scheme of things , however he hits the nail on the head with the railways water power and gas when it comes to the faux companies and the faux competition.
          Time for change , indeed , Good luck to Jeremy and winning , with the winning I hope it wipes out this new labour and those within it, if you are agin me leave.

  5. Shasmac says:

    Very interesting take on things but I’m a bit more cynical about the whole thing. The multi nation powers must preserve the illusion of democracy and cannot afford to allow one of their main puppets to go under completely. There will be some way found to cobble them back together in time for the next election.

  6. MBC says:

    Great piece of writing, Peter, very sharp. You sum up the current panic in Labour and the MSM very well.

    I have to say that I am greatly enjoying the spectacle of the New Labour Party collapse, and the shock-horror of the pundits, but I wouldn’t call it schadenfreude. Rather, I would call it justice, chickens coming home to roost. They are reaping what they sowed. A hollow, barren, seed begets nought. Their New Labour project was essentially parasitic. It failed to create, it failed to reproduce. Those who voted New Labour and rose through its ranks were essentially the post-war baby boomers who benefitted from the creation of the welfare state. Who got free university education, benefitted from their parents low secure rents in their council houses in respectable working class areas, but themselves rose to be comfortably off middle class home-owners, well-paid, securely pensioned professionals like Cherie Blair, and imagine that this phenomena was solely down to their own hard work and aspiration, and not to the leg-up that Clement Attlee gave them. This ungrateful lot have colluded in the dismantling of the redistributive policies from which they directly benefited, preventing other generations behind them from taking the same route up. Hell mend them and their hubris! No, schadenfreude that ain’t, it’s justice.

    Another reason I wouldn’t call it schadenfreude is that a kind of grass roots revolution is happening. The children of long asleep Albion are awakening at last. The underdogs, too long trodden on, sidelined and ignored, are finding a voice in Corbyn that represents them and articulates their values. The 35% self-disenfranchised who never bothered voting, because what on earth was the point?

    See http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/jul/26/jeremy-corbyn-team-shocked-momentum

    Something is now happenning in England with the Corbyn campaign that happened in Scotland during the indyref with the emergence of a whole new younger field of left leaning activists like the RIC and Commonweal. Generation Rent is finding a champion. New voices on the left might emerge in England equivalent to Robert McAlpine or Cat Boyd in Scotland.

    I am finding this fascinating to watch.

    You make the unspoken assumption that this little rebellion is doomed to fail. That Blair was right – that you can’t ever win (in England) from the left.

    But what if you can? What if a new left wing movement coalesces in England around the Corbyn leadership campaign, grows arms and legs, and ousts New Labour, root and branch? A revolution has just happened in Scotland – one that I frankly never thought would happen. Why couldn’t the same thing happen in England? From the 35% who don’t vote, because there’s nobody speaks up for those at the bottom?

    Then another possibility opens up that the Union might indeed be saved if such a force ever managed to get a chance to steer the ship and guide it off the rocks of neoliberalism that is destroying the whole country.

    1. Mikeyboy says:

      IMO the key to the Tory win in the last election was Osbourne’s boost to house prices cleverly timed so it would kick in in the run-up to the election. The narrative about the Uk economy for the last 50 years has been based on house prices going up more than the rate of inflation. This cannot last and once that bubble bursts the effect will be traumatic on the home-owning demographic of the UK, and the effects will reverberate through the whole system. All bets will be off.

      1. Ian Vallance says:

        It can be sustained longer than it should be if you keep up demand (e.g. through immigraton) and at the same time limit supply often via Byzantine planning laws. If anyone actually solved the so called housing crisis middle England would be shafted. So obviously it won’t happen. Oh and Scotland ain’t immune to the same delusional house price drivel.

  7. C Rober says:

    One has to ask though is Corbyn nowt but a whicker man , just a place marker to appease the unions , and the last remaining leftists into ticking that box again for Labour? Could wee Mhari be wan of the same in the SNP?

    I have mentioned already , more than a few times , that May worked into the hands of Nulabour , the last of the lefties were tarred by the same electorates brush , thus replaced in Scotland by the SNP , where a SLAB vaccum now exists so they can put in Nulabour candidates to replace the old read guard .

    Where are they now , are they to sit about for 5 years on the dole waiting for the next election?Are they to remain at home with one bread winner for another 5 years , well I doubt the former socialist Labour politician has their partners considerable income to fall back on during the wait….while the typical Nulabour middle class politician that replaces them will have.

    Frankly no they are not waiting , they will have just gave up the fight and went into employment , no doubt through the contacts they gleamed during their years of service.Not for them is the next 4 years of giros , foodbanks , stacking shelves on zero hour contracts for minimum wage.

    Corbyn is a man of picket fences , not picket lines.

    He is being used by Labour , one only needs to see the diatribe in the usual culprits ink on how he “thinks” , allegedly , that the womans job is in the home…..setting things up nicely for a woman leader of the Labour party , the plan all along.

    Labour is dead because of Nulabour , not simply though because of the SNP on its proof of supply , but because they were not Tory enough for south of Birmingham and not Ye Olde Labour enough for anywhere north of it.

    In abstaining on the benefits bill recently they have signed their own proclamation of unemployment , where the SNP politicians have now done more for the working Classes than their own elected politicians have.

    The bigger problem is that Scotland has realised first that Nulabour has failed , 13 years of BLair/Brown Failed , and the countries reliance on the service industry , which is higher than manufacturing , is not redressing the unemployment figure…..which leads to and keeps benefits bills high.

    The Snp has to capitalise on the lack of Labour power today for tomorrow , to supply what Blair and Slab promised to get Blair into power but never supplied , to reindustrialise Scotland – removing the unbalanced economy that drives up the benefits bill.

    The SNP should stop being the little nerd in Westminster intent on giving the bully a big black eye – rather than the bigger picture , they have went from a single policy party to populist promised politics which fail if there is no supply ….

    The voters now want McDriveThrough(TM) style change , even if that does mean getting hauners or given them to Labour , which is something that Milliband , were he a true Socialist Labour leader would have insisted on , but rejected pre May – as he and the party too were rejected north of the border.

    Corbyn as a leader of the Labour party , one that wants to see the continuation of the Party north of the Border , not merely a northern branch office ,well he needs to continue the supply process of the Independence of Scotland , or at the very least it being federal with FFA …. without it there will be no red ties north of Carlisle , not that Labour gives a hoot about its Scottish Labour Party politicians – other than to make up the numbers and do as they area told.

  8. David Sangster says:

    Labour parliamentarians reiterate the tired old orthodoxy that the only way to win power is as a mirror image of the Tories. They see themselves as the pink figure that pops out of the weather-house when the blue figure goes inside. They believe that that is what the voters want. It is time for a Cromwell to say to them, “I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken.”

  9. Ian Vallance says:

    The demise of the Labour party has been a long time coming if they had been just a few less bawheided twonks in their ranks they might have supported genuine electoral reforms that would have guaranteed that no party could govern without a majority vote. They might have supported compulsory voting then tried to appeal to the people they always say they want to help rather than middle England (folk who generally don’t share a social democratic vision). But no the likes of Blair and the Scottish leadership actually had and still have little but contempt for their apparent constituency.

  10. George Gunn says:

    Ian Vallance, you are correct – the demise of Labour has been a long time coming. In Scotland it began when the Atlee government reneged on the 1945 manifesto commitment to Home Rule and then in the 1960’s when Harold Wilson abandoned principle and the welfare of the people to placate The City, Zurich and Wall Street. By the mid 1960’s Labour had already forgotten what it was for. I think it is up to the English and Welsh people to decide who represents them and in what form. We should support them. You would think, however, if you read all the media that the Scottish Parliament had sunk like Atlantis beneath the waves. As this Westminster farce continues to play it is to Holyrood we should keep our focus because that is where our democracy resides. It may amuse certain folk among us to see what is happening in London but I think laughter is the representative of tragedy when tragedy is away. I fear that for the Welsh and English people tragedy is about to return.

    1. Douglas says:

      Correct George, the whole emphasis of the SNP should be on radically transforming Scotland through culture and education rather than getting bogged down in UK politics. There is nothing to be won there in London…independence can only be won in Scotland….there are times I seriously doubt the SNP really want indie as much as they ought to….

  11. Jimbob says:

    ‘We broke the Labour Party in Scotland’. Dump the ‘We’ and replace it with ‘They themselves’. I think history will show that every sell-out of principle, every statement of patronising insulting elitist know-all mediocrity and stupidity from the morons who were elected as Labour MP’s who sat often like dumb weans in Westminster wi their gobs shut for decades and didnt do their job of representation at all and waltzed around like Lords and Lairds and were often male chauvinist sexist pigs on a daily basis – all of these things and more, as Labour swung more and more to the dehumanised Right of Politics, were the undoing of Labour in Scotland. Alex Salmond smartly positioned the SNP to the Left of Labour and imbued their old Labour Credibility which Labour vacated and left empty. this article would have been better written to show that Corbyn represents mostly what the SNP articulate, the anti austerity and anti-Nukes viewpoint and that his views are highly likely to resonate with the dispossessed ant-austerity voices across England which Blairite careerists distanced themselves from. Labour cut themselves from their own natural constituency and Corbyn will re-connect to that vital awareness and represent it. Let the shallow smug MP morons who think they know best go jump off their lemming cliff and meet the same fate as the dictatorial SDP elites from wherein Blairite top down politics took its strongest brew. Corbyn is the one most akin to the SNP and maybe just maybe the fate of Scotland’s future is tied to the liberation of progressive forces in England. The SNP have yet to face a smart opposition in Scotland one that looks closely at the broad church of the SNP and outs the many self seeking Tories clad in SNP colours hiding in its midst but at the moment they are fortunately concealed by the many talents like Ms Black and the genuine committed principled few who run the Scottish Government. Smugness within the SNP ought to be guarded against because much of the disease that brought down Labour is rotting away within some of the SNP already where there are ugly fights for jobs ahead of next years Scottish election.

    1. Frank says:

      I’m afraid ‘the ugly fight for jobs’ appears to be a necessary part of the political terrain, whether left or right, nationalist or unionist, and it usually attracts the worst sort. Or mediocre conformists. Although, despite my well informed cynicism I do notice a few honourable exceptions. Mhari Black please stand up. Yet for every Black there is a corporate clone; full of cliché; who stand for nothing except the will to power…

  12. GPK says:

    I voted SNP in May, gladly, although my strongest inclination is Green.
    I am delighted to have seen Jeremy Corbyn nominated and win substantial support. He alone of the 5 contenders shares in the Green and SNP opposition to Trident and austerity. If he wins the Labour leadership contest, could there be enough principled idealists plus sensible pragmatists in Labour to rally as one under Corbyn rather than tear themselves asunder infighting? If so, then I would hope that the ‘progressive alliance’ – that welcome prospect offered pre-election by Nicola Sturgeon and more recently by Mhairi Black – may come to exist. At Westminster the joined forces of the SNP, Labour under Corbyn, the Greens (and others) might well be able to disarm the Conservative onslaught; in Holyrood, a new Scottish Labour aligned with Corbyn could revive to serve as a useful balancing force, along with the Greens, to challenge and hone a (hopefully) still-strong SNP majority.
    I would hope too that Jeremy Corbyn may ease a necessary formal separation of Labour parties north and south of the border, recognising that independence is surely coming (whether absolute, or federated).

    1. Jimbob says:

      Good points. Labour need to get behind the demand for Devo Max NOW! They need to find the source of why they were formed and represent people again. Not their party! Not some idiot moronic leader like Jim Murphy! The SNP stole their clothes because they left them off to go for a dip with the corporate Tory elites and walked around naked shorn of their principles for so long that they died. Connection with the people is the oxygen of life for a political party adn Labour got too smarmy for their own boots and talked down to us like we were the idiots. Top down finger wagging Dewar et al must have known that sooner or later this was the route to the graveyard for all their twisted ambitions of power. The fate of the liberation of Scotland now lies with the liberation of England whether the SNP wake up to that reality or not.

      1. Andy Nimmo says:

        Yes, you have to hand it to the Tories, no matter how grudgingky
        They really are the masters of the Machiavellian, shape-shifting dark arts.
        How to destabilise someone we really fear?
        Pretend he is somebody we would really like to gain power. Plant the seed and watch it grow.
        Watch the novices in the Labour Party try and destroy the good simply because they have been led to believe that it is malignant.
        Like lambs to the slaughter.

  13. MBC says:

    I’m not sure that Corbyn will win. He is only narrowly ahead now in the constituencies. But the surge in support for him has been revelatory. If he doesn’t win, what will this support demand? What should he do? Will they look to him to form a breakaway real Labour Party that challenges austerity? Would all the LP members, Unite, and CLPs that have supported him join it?

    I was just thinking that he was the perfect man to do this, and this is the perfect time (at the start of his five year term as an MP) for him to resurrect a genuine party of the left.

    1. Andy Nimmo says:

      Excellent point that raises a few other questions.
      Would the new breakaway party still incorporate the term ‘Labour’?.
      I don’t think the New New Old Labour Party would fly somehow.
      If the Unions play a significant part, would they call it the New Unionist Party….Ouch.
      Any ideas re an appropriate name?

      1. MBC says:

        Solidarity Alliance?

        1. MBC says:

          Labour Solidarity Alliance?

  14. MBC says:

    Corbyn is 66 and thus a pensioner. He’s just been elected for five years, as a Labour MP. He therefore has five years to establish a new popular party of the left at no detriment to himself should his leadership bid fail.

    Would he do it?

    The point is, his unexpected candidacy has become the focus for a lot of anti-austerity anger in England which has gathered a huge amount of popular support, demonstrably challenging the Blairite doctrine that ‘you can’t win from the left’.

  15. Alex Beveridge says:

    Well written article, but frankly I couldn’t care less what happens to the Labour party.
    There are many examples going back almost a century where they have betrayed their original high principles, in the
    main, a commitment to Home Rule for Scotland. So whoever leads, whether in Scotland or England, they have made themselves unelectable, and long, if they survive as a party in their present form, may that continue.

  16. John Craig says:

    ” Morally supine careerists” definitely has a ring to it; many thanks Mr. Arnott.

  17. Kenneth G Coutts says:

    I hope he wins, with his sound social democratic rhetoric, however, it would take a revolution for change, to wipe away the neoliberal corporate fascists and the house of Lords for any real change to be introduced.
    Collectively there is a chance, However, I do not hear anything about Scotland from him.
    Could it be, he is at it.
    I will not be truly convinced until some one stands up and says Labour is dead.

    1. Andy Nimmo says:

      Just a random thought. I stumbled across a quote from that renowned literary figure, Paddy Power (Bookmaker), when questioned about the introduction of Casino Style Roulette Machines into Betting Shopd:-

      “You have to adapt to survive or stay stagnant and bite the dust”

      How many of the current Labour careerists are squashing their inner beliefs in this manner?
      In fact how many NO supporters squashed their own gut feelings?
      There must have been so many, seduced by the umported American Dream of easy credit for luxury 4x4s, the latest must have items for home and family, the need to keep up with the Joneses all leaving them paralysed and up to their eyes in household debt who adapted to survive.

  18. Neil says:

    I do like Corbyn’s views, but honestly – he is about as electable as Micheal Foot.

    1. You’re not really paying attention are you?

  19. C Rober says:

    Weel if hings dinnay work oot fur him , he should move to Scotland and take over oor blue tie laboor perty , at least then an Englishman would live there that actually runs it.

    After watching the BBc SLAB leader debate I realised that nowt will change , the labour voter wants independence for the SLAB , regardless of Independence of Scotland , those in the fray for the leadership do not.Hardly exuding what the electorate wants , rather its what they want , or should that be what the party in England want.

    “I dont want to live in the labour party’s past” , Kezia.

    Says it all really.

    Does she mean

    1.Labour being a supporter of the worker and unemployed like Hardie.
    2.Progression to independence of Dewar.
    3.Blairite-Brown policy fooling the workers into their Thatcheresque vision of Labour.
    4.The 13 years of failed promises to reindustrialise Scotland made when in opposition to the Tories for 17 years.
    5.Abstaining on the Benefit budget vote.
    6.Labour in England ordering every Mp and MSP out and repeating Lying propoganda during the indy ref.

    Of course SLAB dont wont to live in the party past , pre Blair , it only shows them up.

  20. Lochside says:

    I despair over all this navel gazing about Labour. I’m not ashamed to say I’ve been a Scottish nationalist since adulthood although I did not join the party until recently.

    The reason I am of this persuasion is that though socialist in political belief, I cannot bear my country to be run as a colony any longer by another country.

    People sneer at SLAB being a branch office, well Scotland since 1707 has been a branch economy and subordinated, indeed suppressed by English imperialism.

    Corbyn is another in a long line of political false dawns for Scottish socialists. He has no understanding of Scottish identity and even if he were to succeed , in the unlikely event, to be become PM of the UK, he will place English jobs before Scottish.

    60 million votes trumps 5 million squared every time national identity is at stake.

    Where is the focus on our own destiny? It’s still all to play for: Nicola is networking internationally; the ’56’ are creating large disruptive waves in the HOC.; the BBC are still getting away with outrageous Britprop of N. Korean magnitutude

    This constant carping about Corbyn is the Scottish cringe writ large: a pathetic grasping against hope that our ‘Betters’ can pull an aging rabbit out of Labour’s battered hat.

    For pity’s sake show resilience people, and drive forward and grasp our freedom without waiting around for Big Brother England to do the job for us!

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