A guide to Jeremy Corbyn's Britain (the Tories will be in charge)

His imminent victory could lock in 20 years of Conservative rule – of a kind the Tory right might not enjoy

5 September 2015

9:00 AM

5 September 2015

9:00 AM

Just because something is absurd doesn’t mean it can’t happen. This is the lesson of Jeremy Corbyn’s seemingly inevitable victory in the Labour leadership contest. At first, the prospect of Corbyn leading Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition was seen to be so ridiculous that bookmakers put the chances of it at 200 to 1. Labour MPs were prepared to nominate him to broaden the ‘debate’. Now, almost everyone in the Labour party thinks we are days away from Corbyn’s coronation, and some bookies are already paying out. Even Tony Blair has accepted that Corbyn will triumph.

The temptation now is to declare that a Corbyn leadership can’t possibly last. The talk among senior Labour figures is not about his reign but his downfall; each has their own theory as to how and when he will be deposed. Surely, they say, the laws of political gravity would pull him back down so normality could be resumed. This view is dangerously naive. The forces propelling Corbyn to the top of the Labour party are very real, and will change British politics in profound ways — whether he wins or not.

The Corbyn delusion is driven by a few grains of truth. There are, as his supporters claim, voters to the left of Labour who might well be won over by a more left-wing leadership. There is also some public support for some of the policies of the old left — re-nationalisation of the railways, for instance, or whacking the rich. But the overall Corbyn effect would be disastrous for Labour. He is Michael Foot without the anti-fascist record.

Labour lost the last election because the voters didn’t trust the party with their money and the nation’s finances. Corbynomics (and his proposed ‘people’s quantitative easing’) is not the answer. Then there is Corbyn’s long list of dubious statements and associations. One of the Tories involved in doing the opposition research on Corbyn says gleefully, ‘There’s just so much. Calling Osama bin Laden’s death a “tragedy” is just the start.’ Indeed, what should worry Labour is how silent the Tories have been during this leadership contest. When I asked one if they would throw the book at him straight away if he wins, I was told no. The plan is to wait until he is firmly ensconced before doing so.

Indeed, the very sight of him will awaken folk memories in the British electorate. Corbyn may have ditched his vests, but one glance at him still gives a good sense of what his politics are. We might all laugh at Labour’s Peter Mandelson-inspired late 1980s makeover, but it was done for a reason. He wanted the party to look as if it was on the same wavelength as the rest of the country; Corbyn has no such concerns.

Even if Corbyn were quickly deposed, the public would question the judgment of the party that elected him. ‘The hangover from this is going to last an awfully long time,’ concedes one Labour strategist. The Tories will ask, do you want to entrust the country to a party that can elect Corbyn as leader? They would also warn that any Labour government will end up hostage to the far left.

Moreover, a Corbyn victory would pose an immediate dilemma for any ambitious Labour MP. Anyone who served under him would be tainted. They would be asked in every interview if they wanted Corbyn to be Prime Minister; if they said yes, then that clip would be used endlessly against them come their own time at the top. But getting rid of him would be just as hard. Labour MPs who openly opposed Corbyn would find themselves in a battle to hold on to their own constituencies. Internal warfare would ensue. It would be back to the 1980s in more ways than one for Labour. It is easy to see why so many Tories are rubbing their hands in glee. One source in No. 10 says, ‘We wouldn’t have dared script it like this, people just wouldn’t have believed it.’ Corbyn as leader would mean that the next election is the Tories’ to lose, and they would need to make an epoch–defining mistake to blow it. All of a sudden, the Tories have gone from fearing that they would never win outright again to being confident of at least a decade of majority rule. One secretary of state predicts that in 2020 the electorate ‘will form their judgment even more decisively than before.’

Some Tories are unnerved by the prospect of a Corbyn leadership, arguing that bad opposition leads to bad government, and some worry that an unelectable Labour party would lead to Cameroon complacency. What is perhaps most striking is the fear of the more radical Tories about what it means for their agenda. One of the more ideologically committed members of the cabinet frets that a Corbyn victory would lead to Cameron and Osborne tacking hard to the centre, abandoning Tory radicalism in the hope of hoovering up centrist voters disillusioned by Labour’s left turn.

In the 1980s, Margaret Thatcher took advantage of Labour’s lurch to the left to push through right-wing policies that would not have been possible in normal times. But Cameron and Osborne are far more traditional Tories than she ever was: their aim is to hold power rather than to implement an ideological agenda. They both remember all too clearly the party’s 13 years in opposition. Facing Corbyn, their instinct would be to grab as much of the centre ground as possible, and much of this work has already begun. The Tories now pride themselves on being the party of the national living wage; Cameron’s first intervention of the new political term was to threaten firms who failed to pay it with the full force of the law. It won’t stop there; plans are also afoot for a major push on equal pay for women.

The prospect of a Corbyn victory is already changing the dynamics of the next Tory leadership election (which we can expect in about three years’ time). Until recently, Boris Johnson’s supporters argued that the Tories needed something extra for the party to win outright. Boris, who had won twice in a Labour city and had the appeal of a celebrity as well as a politician, appeared to be that something. If Corbyn becomes leader, however, suddenly it would appear that anyone sensible could beat Labour. It is no coincidence that in the past few weeks, the odds on George Osborne’s leadership chances have been shortening almost as fast as Corbyn’s. The Chancellor is now, for the first time, the bookmakers’ favourite. He offers continuity, which is more appealing to the Tory tribe by the day. One of the Chancellor’s cabinet backers argues that ‘the contrast could not be more pointed’ between Corbyn, who has never held office of any sort, and Osborne, the steady hand on the Treasury tiller.


The place where the Corbyn effect is least predictable is Scotland. The SNP has been posing as the only genuinely left-wing party; a Corbyn victory complicates that strategy. There isn’t much space to the left of him. But if he were removed as leader before facing the electorate, the SNP could use this to claim that Westminster politics is dominated by a centre-right consensus that tolerates no opposition. And how would Corbyn handle a Scottish Labour party led by Kezia Dugdale, a centrist?

As the last general election so spectacularly demonstrated, pollsters and bookmakers can get it horribly wrong. Labour’s election is not over. Andy Burnham or Yvette Cooper may yet win — but if they do, the leadership that resulted would probably be a mere footnote in history: a holding period in which some of the more talented younger Labour figures could gain the experience and the stature necessary to lead. Should Corbyn win, the shockwaves will be felt for decades.

Corbyn’s supporters are right about one thing: you can change politics without winning a general election. If he becomes leader, his time in charge would change both the Labour and Conservative parties. It would confirm that May 2015 marked the beginning of a new era of Tory majority rule. A Labour party that is prepared to elect Corbyn as leader is a party that has consigned itself to not being in power for a very long time.

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  • Dr Fell

    is PM corbyn that unlikely? many people seemed to approve of the SNP agenda in the last election.

    • Rex Ironsmith

      Let me correct that for you – “many Scots who approve of Scottish independence voted SNP in the last election”

      Now please explain what possible relevance that has to the chances of #Jezbollah winning over the English Tory voters he needs in order to become PM. Oh, and all of those current non-voters that his supporters claim will carry him to victory? – most of them are lazy slobs or idiots living in existing safe Labour strongholds, who will probably still fail to get out of bed in 2020 anyway.

      • Seax

        Despite their ‘brilliance’, only 24% voted Tory. 76% did not. There is all to play for.

        Also, Corbyn is a gamechanger where Scotland is concerned.

        • KingEric

          Your figures are meaningless as there is usually 30+% who never trouble a polling station with their presence ( or bother with a postal vote). Even as much as you want to bang the drum for Corbyn, he won’t get those missing 30 odd per cent to turn up.

          • roskruge

            That sounds like a last dying gasp to me.
            “Vote Jeremy Corbyn”.

          • ChuckieStane

            You display the same complacency that wiped out Labour in Scotland.

            A great part of the SNP’s success has been due to getting out the disenchanted who never vote.

            During the GE there was an incessant drone from political wonks on how the GE would be decided by 180,000 swing voters in key marginals – the rest of the electorate were taken for granted, patronised or ignored.

            If Corbyn (anyone else from any party) can tap into the discontent of the 30% the tyranny of the focus groups that prevents real policies being pivotal at elections can be blown away.

            Mr. Forsyth’s declaration that the electorate chosing whoever they like is “absurd” reflects the cosy and arrogant sense of entitlement that has been all pervasive in the Westmister political bubble.

          • KingEric

            The SNP tapped into a single issue that galvanised a country. There is no comparable issue in England.

          • Pacificweather

            If you have a system that ensure that, on average, 52% of votes have no effect whatsoever on the outcome of the election and that two thirds of the electorate thought that was such a good system that they wanted it to continue then it is hardly surprising that politicians and journalist concentrate on those votes that will be effective and the rest will be taken for granted. As you sow, so shall you reap.

        • wudyermucuss

          36% of voters voted Tory.
          Far leftism is,and will remain a minority view.
          Rightly so as countless failed leftist countries prove.
          As Corbyn will prove.

      • Gill Simo

        & King bloody Eric…..I am one of that non-voting 30%. I’m 61 and I’ve never voted in any election, local or general. I get out of my bed every morning & work my balls off. My business is doing very well, proof that I’m no idiot & it does so well that I’m able to own my own home in Richmond/Surrey….one of the safest Tory seats, if not the safest in England. Amongst my family, friends, neighbourhood & work associates, I’d estimate that the estimate is very accurate….around a third didn’t vote at the last election & the vast majority, like me, completely ignored the whole campaign.
        I will join the Labour Party if Corbyn is elected leader & should he and/or his agenda still be intact come 2020 then I will be voting Labour, as will, apparently, a good 75% of the above, from what they tell me. All are now extremely politically motivated.
        I’m of the age where this ‘ere Internet has never appealed much….but how wonderful it is that the mass of articles like this and the comments of people like you’s will be etched here for the whole damn world to see….forever!
        May my maker grant me ’til 2020….so’s I can get back to you’s.
        You argue an assumption. That’s no argument at all….it’s the perfect example of a truth….”All you think you know is purely the result of your ignorance”

        • njt55

          A business person voting for Corbyn is like a Turkey voting for Xmas

        • jeremy Morfey

          I was born very near there, but remember it best when it was a knife-edge Liberal/Conservative marginal in the 1980s, and was held for a while by a Liberal Democrat. All down the pan now, since Zac Goldsmith has transformed it into a fortress.

          Any competent entrepreneur can make money under any political system – he or she just adapts to the current rules and exploits them to advantage. Those that spot the business opportunities of a Corbyn Government before anyone else does is onto to a winner.

          Weren’t some of the major beneficiaries of Ken Livingstone’s ‘Fare’s Fair’ subsidised public transport policy of the 1980s, City financiers who were busy swinging deals in time they’d otherwise have spent sitting in traffic?

        • KingEric

          There is a Corbyn effect ( mainly in the media) now and a lot of people are gushing about him. If he is still there in 2020 and after people had a chance to see what he is really about, I doubt very much that your enthusiasm will be at the same levels they are now. Oh and just to cheer you up, I own my own house in Kingston….neighbour!

      • jeremy Morfey

        If the SNP attracted only those interested in Scottish nationalism, they’d have ended up with six, maybe a dozen MPs, rather than the 56 they actually got.

        Not even Farage could win over enough of the English Tory voters to get a meaningful presence in Parliament, and his eurosceptic campaign appealed to a fair few of them. What chance could a PR-spun Labour leader have, unless the Tories were complete rubbish?

        You are right though – the Labour vote is notoriously hard to get out of bed, and this probably will be their undoing.

        • Rex Ironsmith

          “the SNP attracted only those interested in Scottish nationalism”

          You’re talking about 45% of Scottish voters in a FPTP electoral system. With voters opposed to independence shared amongst the other parties was it really any surprise that the SNP won so many seats?

    • davidofkent

      Under 40% of a population of 5.3 million out of a total UK population of 64 million. Obviously your definition of ‘many’ is different from mine. Perhaps the word ‘some’ might be more appropriate and even then, they are all to be found in Scotland which speaks volumes.

    • Freddythreepwood

      I think you must mean many people in your street! Do you live in Glasgow?

  • Sue Smith

    Please, let Corbyn keep going. It’s in everybody’s interests. With somebody so willing to destroy his own political base through ideological extremism we have the gift which keeps on giving.

    • Seax

      How is it extremism? People call him ‘hard left’ but he is quite moderate.

      What is so wrong with helping the people out of austerity rather than promising more of the same as the Neo Libs offer?

      • KingEric

        Because his economic policies are those that were tried and miserably failed in the 70’s. The effect of those policies would make “austerity” ( how massive overspending by the government can be called austerity still puzzles me) seem like a walk in the park.

        • roskruge

          Labour left office with a debt of £700 Billion ( £0.7 trillion). As of Q1 2015 UK government debt amounted to £1.56 trillion, or 81.58% of total GDP, at which time the annual cost of servicing (paying the interest) the public debt amounted to around £43bn (which is roughly 3% of GDP or 8% of UK government tax income).
          Now tell me who is doing the over spending. Backhanders to their rich friends. “Vote Jeremy Corbyn”.

          • whiteafrican13

            @ roskruge – Ok, you clearly don’t understand how government spending works, so I will make this simple. The majority of all spending by government departments is on a contract basis (e.g., the DoH allocates funds to NHS trusts, which spend the money on various costs including contracts of employment, contracts for services, purchase agreements, etc.). Contracts that were agreed in the profligate days of the Brown government can’t simply be magically undone by the Cameron government, because (in most cases) it would be illegal to do so (i.e., you can’t terminate Brown’s expensive purchases (sorry, “investments”) just because they cost the State too much money). So yes, we are currently paying down a HUGE debt. But the government currently responsible for paying that debt is not the government responsible for creating it.

            We agree on one thing though – Vote Corbyn for Labour Leader! (and watch the demise of the Labour Party.)

          • Des Demona

            Ahhhh, so the doubling of the national debt under the last Government is due to contracts entered into by Brown in the prior government.
            Nothing to do with deliberately crashing the economy so that it stalls for nearly 4 years in the name of ”austerity” causing borrowing and welfare to balloon?
            Good to know.

          • whiteafrican13

            Wow. Whatever you’re smoking must be really good.
            As for “deliberately crashing the economy … in the name of ”austerity””, fortunately, we don’t have to take your word for it. In the last full fiscal year for which we have data, the UK had the fastest rate of growth of any G7 member State. Thanks, austerity (or, as the real world calls it, fiscal responsibility).
            We also don’t have to wonder what would have happened had we abandoned fiscal responsibility. We need only look to the excellent example of France, where Francois Hollande’s “anti-austerity” platform got him elected. He promised to end spending cuts and invest in the economy and, to his credit, he tried to do so. How did that work out? Oh, that’s right – it cratered spectacularly. The French economy is in the toilet and (even after Hollande switched back to something like a sensible policy) it is struggling to recover from the principles of “anti-austerity”.

            Still, vote Corbyn for Labour leader!

          • Damon

            The EU’s fastest-growing economy has been ‘stalled’ for four years, has it? If you apply that adjective to the UK, I’d love to know how you’d designate France, Italy or Spain. Or indeed Germany – whose growth has consistently lagged behind ours in recent years.

            As for welfare, that would have been a good deal higher – if this government hadn’t created more jobs than the rest of the EU put together. There are only two successful major economies in the West at the moment: the USA and the UK. Given the stinking ordure which they inherited, the present government’s success has been remarkable.

        • Sue Smith

          Yeah, that!

          • I will show& excellent internet job opportunity… three-five hrs of work /a day… Payment at the end of each week… Bonuses…Payment of 6-9 thousand dollars /a month… Merely several hrs of spare time, desktop or laptop, most basic knowing of web and dependable internet connection is what is needed…Get more information by visiting my page

      • roskruge

        I did a survey with an on-line newspaper this morning, and it put Jeremy Corbyn to the ‘right’ of me.
        “Vote Jeremy Corbyn”.

        • Jaria1

          Would your first name be Leon by any chance.

        • Jaria1

          Youve got something against a successful UK.

        • Freddythreepwood

          You should stay away from the Socialist Worker, on-line or not.

      • Jaria1

        Do you really expect after two decades of economic mismanagement you can alter the drift downwards as easily as flicking a switch? Last time it took over a decade to repair Labours mess . Had the lib dems not watered down tkhe austerity programme that even Darling the Labour chancellor called for it was timed to do the same now its timed to have been eradicated by the end of this parliament.
        I notice in giving out all the bad news you neglect to mention the position we hold in comparison to every other Western democracy . Do you happen to work int BBCs editorial per chance.

      • davidofkent

        There has been no austerity, especially in Scotland. If you don’t think that Corbyn’s ideas are extreme Left, you probably don’t understand what he is saying.

      • Freddythreepwood

        Corbyn is ‘quite moderate’ like Stalin, Trotsky and Lenin were ‘quite moderate’. As for austerity- please don’t make me laugh!

      • You don’t know what ‘austerity’ means. Cameron’s government has reduced government spending by 3%. If you extract the buzz words such as ‘Neo Libs’ and ‘austerity’ from your contribution, it is quite meaningless rubbish. No surprise there then.

      • Gregory Mason

        ‘Austerity’ is synonymous with ‘living within your means’.

        • Damon

          Indeed, Gregory, but the idea of living within one’s means is anathema to Lefties. They just don’t get it.

        • Quest for Liberty

          I’ve installed an extension that changes ‘austerity’ to ‘living within our means’; hence I’m always humoured when I see a Guardian or Independent article that tells me ‘living withing our means isn’t good housekeeping, it’s evil and unfair’.

      • whs1954

        ‘Austerity’ is a made-up word created by the upper-middle-class champagne socialists. Anyone who uses it – says that ‘the people are suffering from austerity’ or some such – outs themselves as quintessential upper-middle-class luvvie soft-left.

        In working-class communities the term is ‘hardship’ or ‘hard times’, not austerity. And even then it’s not quite right – hardship means you tighten your belt, austerity means the government tightens its belt, and the latter doesn’t necessarily mean the former.

        • Croimaith

          Patronising nonsense. ‘Hard times’ implies economic conditions beyond anyone’s control. Austerity is a deliberate policy inflicted by the wealthy on everybody else.

      • hdb

        ‘Hard left’ is a term thrown around very casually in the press. I’ll quote Jacques Peretti from today’s Independent on the supposedly hardleft GLC of the early 80s: “In Andy Beckett’s fascinating social history of early 1980s Britain, Promised You A Miracle,
        London’s loony left GLC run by Ken Livingstone espoused bonkers
        policies such as gay marriage, cycle lanes, pollution-free zones, the
        teaching of multicultural diversity in schools, and affordable social
        housing. What madness! Forty years on, David Cameron endorses pretty
        much everything once considered a far-left fantasy, as a marker of
        modern, tolerant Britain.”

  • Seax

    More misrepresentation or misunderstanding of press factoids. Corbyn said it was a tragedy that Bin Laden did not go to trial. That means something quite different to what is implied.

    The rest is just fear mongering and, interestingly, as this has not worked on the people, it is now being turned on career politicians. It says much about our political system that there is a suggestion that career should come before representation on the people…

    • wycombewanderer

      Can you point to any youtube video where Corbyn has stood up for Britains interests first.

      Can you point to where, in the interests of dialogue he has shared a platform with a unionist politician or a Jew, can you show us him holding a minutes silence in honour of those british soldiers and police officers killed doig their duty.

      Can you find a video of him even holding a minutes silence to innocent civilians killed by his trewrrorist friends.

      • Faulkner Orkney

        I guess he’ll be at the Cenotaph come Remembrance Day…will he wear a suit and be respectful, I wonder?

        • paul walsh

          I think he will to remember all those who we lost in a silly folly.
          We should remember all the fallen with deep respect.

      • Gill Simo

        Corbyn is a pacifist…..discussion equals peace, war equals ignorance.
        He therefore believes that voices, when shouting in anger, must be heard. He therefore does everything he can to help facilitate that.
        The examples you give do not need his assistance…..we already hear them all too clearly…..usually making feeble excuses as to why the voices of anger should be submitted violently into silence.

      • jeremy Morfey

        Give him time, and he’ll learn some manners, if only because it’s more effective in getting his way, and doesn’t really cost anything.

        Sharing a platform with someone doesn’t mean agreeing with everything they stand for.

        I recall the situation a few years back when the commoner Middleton family members were summoned by the Queen up to Balmoral for a crash course in royal etiquette. On balance, I think it worked out fine for both families.

    • Yorkieeye

      I can’t even imagine how many hostages would have been taken and beheaded on film in exchange for the release of Bin Laden from which ever jail he ended up in. Better off dead.

      • Shazza

        Not forgetting the marches in Londonistan…………..

  • 2904

    I voted Thatcher in, and I voted her out when she made the Conservatives into The Nasty Party. It is worse now and even become a kleptocracy. Hopefully Corbyn will force the Conservatives back into moderation and away from American redneck neoconism.

    • Derek

      Were you a Tory MP in 1990?

    • Jaria1

      Would that misinterpretation apply to other groups of terroristshe has consorted with as well. Do you emvy those that live in Putins zrussia.

    • Freddythreepwood

      Stop burbling. Thatcher was never voted out; unless you were one of the stupid and ungrateful members of her own government who stabbed her in the back.

    • jeremy Morfey

      Me likewise. That 1981 Budget was the stab in the back for small business that I was expecting her to revive. I joined a rival party in that year, and was an active campaigner – Area Chairman at one time. Not being a Conservative member in 1990, I could not vote her out, but I was jolly relieved to see her go.

      I expect there are those that voted Labour in 1997 that have trod precisely the same path. How much money has Blair made out of being Prime Minister?

  • willshome

    Wrong from beginning to end, even down to ditching the vests. Well done.

  • Juggzy Malone

    Yeah. I’m reading this and checking off stuff on a list: is something Corbyn has said being unambiguously and easily demonstrably misrepresented?; are there predictions that the Tories will be in power for a long time as a result of a Corbyn win?; is there a grudging and belittled acceptance that his popularity might be signalling some sort of will to move to the left in the populace? Check to all of those.

    You carry on, James Forsyth. You carry on. Good job!

    • Derek

      With right wing parties winning over 50% of the vote in May you are absolutely spot on.

  • Charles Turner

    One of the biggest outrage against Jeremy Corby’s policies is that he has said he
    would re-privatise utility companies and railways. People are shocked and horrified at such a backward step. But like frogs being boiled, people simply do not understand the wholepicture and how what Thatcher envisaged has turned sour. Consider the following British electricitycompanies: London Electricity, Sweb, Seeboard and British Emery. All stalwartsof privation which at the time I was totally in favour of. They are now EDF.
    What is EDF? EDF is the French government owned electricity company. So if we rewordedthe question and asked whether we would prefer the French governemet to own our electricity companies or our own government, the debate would be completely different. How would Thatcher respond?
    She would go nuts in her grave. She would probably support Corbyn in having utilitycompanies state run by the UK, rather than utilities state run by the French.

    The German bought Powergen and National Power,which is are now called EON and Npower and the Spanish bought Scottish Power.

    Jeremy Corbyn might be quite blunt and honest in the way he is portraying his
    policies. But the media is doing its public a disservice by just deriding him
    as a left wing extremist rather than analysing some of the real problems the UK
    has. Another left wing extremist policy is to give students free education. I
    got free university education under a Thatcher Government, I thought that was
    normal and fair and still do and I am sure Thatcher who came from an ordinary
    background did as well.

    • roskruge

      Good one there!
      “Vote Jeremy Corbyn”.

      • Charles Turner

        Its nothing to do whether I would vote for Jeremy Corbyn or not. My point is that the media is doing us a public disservice and producing blatant propaganda rather than looking at the real issues. Thatcher is quoted as saving us from the extreme left, but Thatcher wouldnt accept some of the things that have happened to Britain in the last ten years, which Jeremy is highlighting. Whether you agree with Corbyn or not, issues should not be swept unde rthe table with the label of extremism. Another extremist policy is to build large scale housing. I suspect Thatcher would have had the balls to tackle the London housing crisis. Clearly the last couple of governements havent.

        • jeremy Morfey

          I regret to say, considering the antics of Westminister councillors such as Lady Porter, she would have got round the problem by gerrymandering the poor out of London, making it the problem of squalid Labour-controlled districts.

          If they are foolish enough to welcome the poor into their parishes, then they should pay for it.

    • greggbayesbrown

      Well said. Regardless of political leaning, there are obviously some massive wounds in our society at the moment, and both Labour and the Tories are doing little more than strapping on a plaster and hoping for the best.

      What Corbyn is campaigning on isn’t nuts or bonkers, it’s actually tackling fundamental flaws in what we are currently doing backed up by a ton of economists saying “yeah, this definitely needs to be looked at”. I also find it amusing how many people in the press are trying to paint him as anti-British. He’s going for a programme that will require change but ultimately has the power to benefit many. Since when do the British just sit at home in fear in their ever more expensive house hoping that the bad men just go away?

      • kingkevin3

        He’s talking about an hiking taxation on the people who keep this country alive…the 90% of small businesses that keep it going. The situation is amoral enough. This guy believes he is a “good” guy because he takes the money from the people who earn it and gives it to those who don’t and don’t intend earning it. I should know. I live in Queens Park and you only have to walk out of my flat on any given day of the week and see the wasters walking around here doing sod alL the entire day. Of course all of the these people claim 23,000 GBP housing benefit and can therefore afford to stay here. I can’t afford that so I pay 16,000 GBP of my own money to live in a one bedroom flat…how the fuck is that morally fair?…this country is seriously fucked and its people like you who are fucking it up.

        • Alaa Al-Mohammad

          Or minimum wage and welfare could be set at a level that doesn’t incentivise leeching.

          • Bertie

            Or you could just end the important of hundreds of thousands of cheap Labour, which artificially compresses wages, abolish welfare in its entirety for all but the most needy, and get

            everyone else sponging to go out to work. It’s amazing what going hungry and not being given everything on a plate does to ones willingness to work, in any job, not just one that they fancy and believe pays suitably.

            We cant all be fortunate to earn six figures in a job we like.Most people earn far far less for long hours – the fact they have the morally fibre and personal discipline to get out of bed and work 60-70 hours a week for their £16-£26,000 per year should be applauded. And their efforts shouldn’t be undermined by providing £24-36,000+ to scrounging wastrels sitting on their backsides doing sod all or pumping out large numbers of kids thereby acquiring not only a large council property,but also an income most have no chance of seeing.

          • Alaa Al-Mohammad

            I don’t disagree. Stop people sponging by making work pay – many of those on benefits do work a job, but still don’t get paid enough to survive, these hard-working people should be rewarded with a higher wage, which would simultaneously discourage sponging as welfare would be lower than expected earnings from a minimum wage job.

            PS. Only a minority of the welfare cost is wasted on those who should be found ineligible.

            PPS. I agree that the effects of immigration on workers pay are not considered fully enough with yellow bellied lefties saying it has no effect/increases wages – ignoring the disproportionate impact it has on the poorest in society:


          • Jaria1

            So we are constantly being told but when I challenged one poster about his figures of a very high percentage of Immigrant males and even more immigrant females not working . He was adamnent he was correc.
            Having witnessed how figures are so often manipulated I do qustion how many avail yhemselves of benefits.
            There again their birth rate is getting out of control especially when you work out that the most popular name is Mohammef

          • Alaa Al-Mohammad

            If you look at the link I posted, which shows some quite reasonable research by Oxford University, you find that there is evidence that, as Bertie says, immigration has hit blue collar wages the hardest.

            But it’s perfectly reasonable to want to both cap immigration and raise the minimum wage. Both of which would reduce the strain on the welfare system, which regardless of our political leanings I’m sure we can agree is a band-aid we’d rather not have to use.

          • Jaria1

            Alaa al-Mohammad. No disrespect intended but im generally against links which are often used to prove a point but are a set of opinions which as you know its not difficult to find links that have contrary opinions and so on and on. Id much rather hear what the poster has to say. That in this case would be yourself.
            The Uk has a dreadful skill shortage and its my guess many more immigrants would not stop the demand fro blue collar workers as the type I recognise.
            For reasons it would take too long to explain the UK. Has a dreadful record in useful education . The schools produce far too many leavers completely ill equipped to compete with immigrants . Governments should never have let down our school leavers like they have and their education should never have finished half completed.
            They will always be at the bottom of the pile that and hanging around doing nothing has had its effect on their work ethic. Many people say that foreigners are preferred as they work cheaper. This is not the case ask any company and they will tell you who gives the best value .
            I read that with the success in the countrys economical standing wages are likely to get better at an even faster rate than they are doing at present. Ive always gone on supply and demand and as unemplyment figures go down so does the labour pool and employers start having to compete for labour.
            Lets hope that Chinas misfortunes dont put a stop to our growth.

          • Bertie

            Work would have more chance of “paying” (and thus fulfilling the old mantra of a fair days pay for a fair days work) but this has bugger all chance of being achieved if we are going to import masses of cheap Labour – no, I’m not referencing the City/Doctors which are the skills we should be focusing on, the masses for all the low skill jobs many of the indigenous population feel is beneath them – eg Care work.

            Frankly if they have their benefits removed they might feel less picky when they go hungry.

            Wage compression is the major negative from mass migration – technology has hollowed out much of the the Middle Classes, Cheap migrants have smashed the blue collar wage rate. This will continue as we currently received 600-630,000 migrants gross , each and every year. Most of these are Low Skill. So the problem will only get worse, requiring more welfare in the form of Income top ups, Child tax credits/Child beenfits/Housing benefits to assist those on low incomes.

            Utter farce – and we’re now going to let 20,000 Syrian economic migrants(they arent refugees as they’re safe,in Turkey, with most of them seemingly male – anyone else noted the absence of women & children from all the photos and live broadcasts.) into the UK, presumably with free housing,paid for by us, perhaps a monthly stipend amounting to £20,000 odd per year…and all the other free help they might ned.

            But bugger all our own homeless, our ex servicemen, our elderly who are forced to live in abject poverty because the state doesnt feel a need to look after them properly. Even worse if they’ve shed blood for this country – no one sems to appreciate the sense of duty,honour, personal discipline and self sacrifice such people have made. lets just give our money to people off a bloody boat who’ve done nothing for this country.

    • emmess74

      Well, I am not British but I would rather a friendly foreign state owned utilities rather than my own as there is no political advantage in ‘making work’, although if they did they would just be subsidizing the British economy. No downside to that.

      • Charles Turner

        France is more extrem socialist ( if that lable may be used) then any British governement has ever been. They are in charge of a large part of out utilities. Think that one through. France could either swing to the left or to the right in the next few years. Are you sure you wouldnt prefer osborne and Cameron to be in charge of it?

        • jeremy Morfey

          I thought the whole point of privatisation was to keep the politicians’ grubby paws off our utilities. Personally, I prefer them to be under public ownership and control.

          I agree with you entirely about EDF and so on – all that’s happened with denationalisation has been out of the frying pan and into the fire.

    • Damon

      France has a policy of keeping key utilities in ‘national’ hands. The French economy is a mess. If economic nationalism doesn’t work over there, why would it work here?

      • Charles Turner

        Yes Thatcher would agree with you. HOWEVER, she wouldn’t want the French to state to own our utilities. Why are’nt the press and people outraged about this, rather than just Corbyn bashing? What has gone so wrong with our economy which is supposedly the 5th largest i the world that are core assets have been taken over by foreign powers. The press and politicians have don us a disservice.

    • paulthorgan

      “So if we reworded the question and asked whether we would prefer the
      French government to own our electricity companies or our own
      government, the debate would be completely different. How would
      Thatcher respond?”

      It is possible to reword any question. The hard fact is that ownership is a consequence of capital. The French were willing to stump up the cash and get into the agreements so they ended up owning it. The alternative would be cash coming from the taxpayer. It may be news to you but we all have been taxed enough. Even the government admit this as they borrow money instead of raising taxes to cover the deficit. If they could raise taxes, they would. So the fact that they don’t does indicate that they can’t.

      It does not matter if the French government own our power stations so long as the fulfil their contractual obligations. If they fail to do so, then the government could presumably take action.

      If you have any evidence that the French are not doing they are paid to do, then please contact your local MP.

      • Charles Turner

        Ok. just give it straight then. what do you think Thatcher would have thought about the French owning our utiilities? Its a bit of a joke to decry me for rewording a question for simplicity, when the press is blatantly changing quotes from Corbyn to provide a completely different context. I have just tried to provide context.
        You may have noticed that the last two Governments managed to stump up 385 billion in QE for the banks, but the foreign takeover of our utilities happened at a much earlier stage when the UK had a tiny debt in comparison. If you or anyone on this forum disagrees with this please provide me some supporting facts.
        You are also missing my point completely. I am not here supporting everything that Corbyn is doing. I am just amazed that the press rubbish every single thing he says, rather than look at whether it is an issue or not. Thatchers vision was that many households across the UK would have an ownerships stake in our utilities, including staff and families that worked there but it would be on an private individual basis rather than a nationalised basis. If she saw what has happened since she would have had nightmares.

        • paulthorgan

          “Ok. just give it straight then. what do you think Thatcher would have thought about the French owning our utilities?”

          Thatcher believed in free-market capitalism as advocated by F A Hayek. Hayek was not a nationalist. Capital is capital. The acquisition of the firms is exactly the kind of inward investment she championed.

          “Its a bit of a joke to decry me for rewording a question for simplicity,when the press is blatantly changing quotes from Corbyn to provide a completely different context. I have just tried to provide context.”

          The wrong context.

          “You may have noticed that the last two Governments managed to stump up 385 billion in QE for the banks, but the foreign takeover of our utilities happened at a much earlier stage when the UK had a tiny debt in comparison.”

          The two are not related. This is irrelevant.

          “I am not here supporting everything that Corbyn is doing. I am just amazed that the press rubbish every single thing he says, rather than look at whether it is an issue or not.”

          It may be because they know him better than members of the public.

          ” Thatchers vision was that many households across the UK would have an ownerships stake in our utilities, including staff and families that worked there but it would be on an private individual basis rather than a nationalised basis.”

          Thatcher wanted popular share-owning. However this is a free country. People are free to dispose of shares as they wish. Thatcher cannot be blamed for where the shares ended up.

          • jeremy Morfey

            Are you suggesting that Thatcher placed the interests of free market global corporatism above that of the national interest?

            What was the European Single Market (an initiative coming from Thatcher herself when she had the presidency of the EU) about?

          • paulthorgan

            “Are you suggesting that Thatcher placed the interests of free market global corporatism above that of the national interest?”

            While I have answered a question from you previously I do have to point out that this is a comments section, not a Q & A.

            “What was the European Single Market (an initiative coming from Thatcher herself when she had the presidency of the EU) about?”

            See above.

          • jeremy Morfey

            So you’ve bottled it! Or frit, as Thatcher herself would have put it.

          • CouchSlob

            Bwk bwk bwwwwk!

          • Charles Turner

            So what do you think Thatcher would have thought about the French state owning a large section of our essential utiities? Do you think she would be:

            a. Ecstatic
            b. Very pleased
            c. Neither pleased nor displeased
            d. Disappointed
            e. Highly disappointed.

            I would opt for (e). You choose a, b, c, d or e.
            This is a completely unbiased question. I would just like your honest view. This is not about Corbyn, This is about some of the issues thrown up by capitalism.

            Thatcher had many visions. Visions have a start and an end She had a vision that council houses should be in private hands and reduce the cost of the state. Do you think she would be pleased that the state is now paying 300% more for social housing as it has to rent back ex council housing off private people or do you think she would have done something about it unlike either LABOUR or the TORY’s have done. She probably would have had a completely different policy to Jeremy but with the end goal being the same of a million new homes, whereas Our current bunch just brush it under the carpet.
            Do you think Thatcher would approve that students now face debts of in excess of £50,000 when it was free for her and free for when she was in power and the richest in this country average wealth has increased by 121% since the last financial crisis through QE in this country? Or do you think she would have been harder on the financial institutions to pay back money?
            Like her or hate her Thatcher believed she had the countries best interst at heart. Most politicians nowadays only have their own best interest at heart and talk about policies that will get them elected, rather than those policies that they believe in for the long term benefit of the country The MEP that has the most impact on the European parliament bringing them to heel time and time again was Nigel Farage. Here again just like Corbyn I don’t necessarily agree with his policies, but I do agree with the fact that he stands by his beliefs.
            Politics in the UK will be a better place if we have more alternative politicians and the press take on board real issues rather than celebrity politics. I look forward to Corbyn up against Cameron each week taking each policy head on like an opposition is supposed to do.

          • Charles Turner

            Hi Paul, a, b, c, d or e?
            Its a one letter reply!!!

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          • Frank

            One aspect of selling off the utilities was that the relevant quango was then supposed to ensure that the utility charged the least possible for its products / services – this is where it has gone wrong, as we keep getting heads of quangos who seem to think that their job is to protect the profits of the privatised utility – this anti-consumerism is what would have Thatcher twirling in her grave

    • somewhereinthesouth

      So assume you must be anti the EU then – because this allows free trade and if we are all supposed to be moving to ever closer union to become one country then why does it matter if EDF or Powergen is owned by Europeans ? I don’t really get it – if the company were owned by some in Scotland the profits would go there and someone inScotland [ lets say Glasgow city council pension fund [ instead of say an owner in England ] – so what ? We can buy companies in the EU if we wish and the profits are receipted here . I haven’t noticed that EDFs electricity is much different or hugely more expensive from that supplied by other companies whoever owns them .Markets generally provide the most efficient solution and government ownership is only desirable if there isa market failure which cannot be dead;t with by regulation . I am not aware that foreign ownership is a security risk or that there is huge market failure .The fact that company is owned by the French is not of itself a problem – in the absence of any real criticism, other than dogma , the criticism is Xenophobic in my view

      • Charles Turner

        No I am not anti EU. Whatever made you come to that conclusion, neither am I anti capitalist: I own several companies and import and export to the EU. The problem with many people is that that they feel that have to be either be left or right or black or white. They feel that they have to either support Corbyn or see him as the anti Christ. They dont see the need to see what the issue might be behind his supposedly ‘extreme left wing policy’. They just see the need to disgaree on principle with whatever he says about anything. To be totally pro European you would agree to a European parliament that made our laws, EU fiscal policy where money transferred between regions like in the UK with London and Scotland, An EU army, an EU police force, etc, etc. If this is what you mean by anti EU you may be right in your assertion. To be totally anti EU you would ban trade with the EU, ban travel and be on a potental war footing. If this is the case I am pro EU. What matters is there is a common playing field. UK governements cannot buy french utilities, yet French tax payer money can be used to buy our utilities and the French government is an 85% shareholder. As Margaret Thatcher is such a standard bearer of the right, I have asked the question to another above. But nobody seems to have the ability to answer it>

        So what do you think Thatcher would have thought about the French state owning a large section of our essential utiities? Do you think
        she would be:

        a. Ecstatic
        b. Very pleased
        c. Neither pleased nor displeased
        d. Disappointed
        e. Highly disappointed.I would opt for (e). You choose a, b, c, d or e.

        Maybe you could give your view. My biggest frustration with The press is that they are just looking to attack Corbyn and the other labour candidates are to frightened to say anything that would upset the press and are looking like youngsters at a job interview trying to plase, rather than conviction politicians. Osborne brought out two new taxes recently. He brought out the non dom tax and he also is tapering interest relief on morrgage interest on buy to let starting next year. Imagine if Jeremy had brought those policies out. He would have been ridiculed for being a left wing extremist and the papers one by one would do a demoition job on him for destroying the free market. BecauseTory does this the muttering is more underground.

        • somewhereinthesouth

          I think probably d . Whilst she was free market she was wary of eu control and proud of Britain. She might have thought British industry a bit wet to allow it. Having said that I don’t think she would have opposed it

          • Charles Turner

            Thanks for answering, others to the right bottled it. Thatcher was strong, like her or hate her and I think she would have taken steps to develop new policies where this couldn’t happen. Her solutions would be different to Corbyns but she would be looking for solutions rather than just brushing things under the carpet

    • John Carins

      The EU of course has played its part in ensuring that French and German power companies were able to take over these British companies. Also, it was under Labour that these takeovers happened and at a stroke consumer choice was limited. The French and Germans of course do not play the “market” by the same rules – we are weak at defending our own brands. Finally, the absurdity of EDF/Chinese building our next generation of nuclear reactors is an absolute disgrace.

    • Caractacus

      Said energy companies are now EDF not because of Thatcher, but because of Blair. Thatcher’s privatisations included clauses requiring companies to stay in British hands. Guess who abolished those clauses…

      • Charles Turner

        A very good point and I bet Corbyn opposed Blair on that one.

    • Vuil

      Surely the biggest outrage, dwarfing issues like nationalization is that Corbyn would open the flood gates for Muslim immigration to Britain – his ‘friends’ as he calls them.

      • Charles Turner

        Hi Vuil, i would be most grateful if you could post where you have found direct quotes in this election campaign by Jeremy Corbyn where he states it will be ‘free for all on immigration’. Obviously this would need to be something that came out of his mouth, rather than something that a newspaper has made up.

        Its rather worrying that a our free press is writing so many half quotes which give a completely different picture rather than the direct truth.

        • Jaria1

          Corbyn has had loads of opportunities on live TV to rebutt these accusation.
          I must have missed them

          • Charles Turner

            I have watched Corbyn on live TV. His main aim is to show that he is a better leader than the other contenders and explain his policies, not to rebuff things that the press make up about him.

          • Jaria1

            That would be your opinion Charles Turner i believe the press are trying to point out to those that think like you that its he a obviously not a good idea for either Labour and others

      • Bertie

        He’d probably invite one of his “mates” in Hezbollah to join his cabinet – perhaps as Foreign Minister! 🙂

        Odious treacherous bastard if you ask me. And that’s probably being unfair to bastards.

    • Jaria1

      How any sensible person can support another Union Puppet after Miliband is beyond me.
      You are seeing Corbyns pre election image at the moment . Even as leader of the opposition people will identify him as representing a good chunk of British opinion, especially if he and SNP team up for obvious reasons.
      His popularity has a lot to do with Labour sticking to its bunch of front bench failures who rarely to the foot soldiers views into consideration. Something for Cameron to think about!
      Its his policies that I find it difficult for sensible people to agree with especially as most countries are nw travelling to the right . Theres a lot to blame Capitalism for but it should be used to the countrys advantage as opposed to trating it like an enemy. Corbyn after three decades of being ignored has to have a huge chip on his shoulder.
      I assume his supporters are to the left of the party with the exception of a few starry eyed kids who think its some sort of rave but they must see how damaging Corbyn will be to the Labour party but more importantly to the Country trading in a global economy.
      No one will stop him as hes got the mass union vote as did Miliband. An emeritus proffessor in the Telegraph letters tells us that the leader should come from elected members only. They of course chose their MP and its up to the MP that should be making the choice. The lawyers must be licking their lips

      • Jaria1

        A ton of economists? When examined very closely some were hardly un biased and others dodgy. The article concluded ten economists in the room will give you ten different answers.
        Frankly you dont need an economist as long as your priority is what is good for UK .Corbyn most certa inly isnr

    • John Tosh

      Mrs Thatcher didn’t seem to mind large chunks of our media being in the hands of a foreigner. I can’t see that she would have baulked at the French or anyone else owning utilities as long as they provided “value for money”. In fact, I think Thatcher would be delighted at the way things are turning out.

      • Charles Turner

        Thatchers dream was that the utilities would be in the hands of private people in the UK. I wasn’t aware that large chunks of the media transferred to foriegn hands when she was in power, so I would be delighted if you were to enlighten me on this one. I am further not aware of any foriegn government owning our media. It would be great if you could give me the details as I am keen to learn.

    • Geronimo von Huxley

      Geronimo smell fear. Geronimo see paid advert for red Tory squaw in Specator and know white man fear. Deer in headlights fear. Fear good.
      Fear make taking scalp more easy.

  • misomiso

    Great article. Cameron’s timidity on education so far has been on casualty. They deserve credit for what they’ve done, but to complete the revolution they NEED vouchers, as other wise the Left can overturn Academy programe too easily when they next get in, and there is too little pressure on bad schools (from parents taking their children away) to perform.

    And the small issue of Europe of course.

    • Quest for Liberty

      Indeed, they may revisit an ideological purging of selective schools, not becase it helps students at all, or does any good for social mobility (rather the opposite), but because it makes them feel good.

  • Jaria1

    That anyone can see him as being moderate leaves me in dispair as I believe it would any other genuine moderate.
    There is no easy way out of the reason for austerity but to cut waste and spend wisely. To suggest otherwise is to mislead the public presumably to get their votes.
    It will be only later that we find weve made a mistake when we should have known through past experiences what we were doing.

  • proudsurfer

    He’s trying to be all things to all people, that’s impossible and so he comes across as very shallow lightheaded person who will say anything, ANYTHING to get a vote, regardless of the fact that it will be physically if not financially viable in many of his ideas. e.g.Does he have any concept of what it would cost to ‘reopen’ a coal pit?
    They weren’t mothballed they were shut down permanently in most cases, and in many instances light industrial or commercial buildings built on site, a classic example being Nantgarw Caerphilly, the most up to date mine in its time, now there is a supermarket on its site. This is the man the Labour Party want to lead them?

  • Tamerlane

    Can’t say I’m on board on this one. What a government craves is a chance to implement long term policy planing rather than limping from one five year session to another. Blair knew he had a good ten years in ’97 to do what he wanted and now the Tories have a minimum 15 (assuming Corbyn wins). All that’s necessary for democracy is that Parliament holds the government to account, beyond that the Tories have a wonderful opportunity to implement some real long term political planning. I don’t suppose they’ll be too bothered by the ‘ineffective opposition’ argument.

    • Yvonne Stuart-Hargreaves

      A the wisdom of a mighty sage. How fortunate we are to benefit from the musings of one so uniquely well equipped to predict the future.
      I’m sure many are grateful for these well informed assurances. So too must you be. So confident i’m sure you’ve bet the farm on the 15 year term.

      • Tamerlane

        You insult me Yvonne/Barry, it’s an estate not a farm I own. An estate! Good God man!

  • Peter Stroud

    If Corbyn does take charge of Labour, then there will a fair number of real left wing MPs that will be very happy. And, of course, there will be opportunists like Andy Burnham who will do anything to get into the shadow cabinet, to boost his chances come the net leadership battle. So the Islington Marxist will survive, at lest for some time. But Labour will suffer greatly.

  • Arthur Rusdell-Wilson

    I hope May 2015 isn’t Theresa.

  • paulthorgan

    I do believe most people have got their analysis wrong in this case.

    The defining characteristic of Labour under Miliband minor was its quasi-Blairite level of party unity, despite the obvious splits which led to Blair resigning. Even though the Blairites were marginalised, there was no ideological debate in the party. This is even more astonishing given that the party and the MPs wanted Miliband major to lead Labour in the moderate direction and not his clumsy less-talented brother. Not enough questions were asked about why Ed Miliband took a year off while he and his brother were at the heart of power. Something happened, we don’t know what. What we do now is that the unions’ man was not representative of the party or the electorate.

    In retrospect, Corbyn’s ascendancy should have been obvious to anyone who took the time to look at the reader comments underneath any political article. The number and intensity of the anti-Tory comments indicated a large number of people willing to elect an MP who is as anti-Tory as it is possible to be.

    However there is sufficient space on the centre ground for someone to challenge the Tories and not be seen as slavishly following them. The Conservatives have several open goals waiting for the right candidate.

    Labour lost in 2010 and 2015 because its leadership failed to grasp the paradigm shift in the bulk of the electorate and instead retreated to a constituency made up of various groups defined by their identity and economics who are simply not representative of mainstream life in the UK. Those that did question this strategy stayed silent out of the need for unity. It is inconceivable that party unity, especially if it is led by its worst rebel, will continue.

    The ‘people’s party’ reverted to failing to recognise that the people in this country have moved on. It is not 1936 or 1945 any more, but you would not believe that to listen to Labour..

    The ascendancy of Corbyn means the party in Parliament is effectively split. Corbyn’s voting record means that MPs are free to rebel. This is actually the best time to reform Labour into a centrist social democratic party and attract moderate members instead of a leftist democratic socialist one that can only attract a relatively small body of extremists.

    It is conceivable that after a lot of drama, Labour could be electable in 2020, but the party will have to take some tough action to do so, and moderate social democrats in the public arena will have to step up.

    All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

    • Standish79

      It might be a radical thought given recent history, but perhaps the centrist social democrat tendance will regroup in something that, the last time they did this, came to be called the Liberal Democrats.

      They might be down but they’re not completely out, and the process has begun of putting behind them the Clegg years and the dirty business of coalition government. If Corbyn steers Labour hard to the left, I expect many people will once again seek a non-Tory centrist home for their votes.

      This seems like a more realistic scenario than UKIP ever becoming a significant protest force, not least because a Corbynite Labour Party might pick many of those ‘traditional’ working class voters to whom UKIP temporarily appealed, whilst centrists specifically dislike UKIP’s lunatic fringe, social conservatism and policy of withdrawal from the EU. Also, I think poor old Nige, fun though he is, might have run out of personal enthusiasm for the project.

      • paulthorgan

        ‘Traditional’ working class voters are virtually extinct, in my opinion. The mines are closed and the factories and steelworks employ a small fraction of what they used to, thanks to automation.

        There is a legacy of traditional anti-Toryism in post-industrial areas, but the paradox is that this anti-Toryism does not translate directly into socialism. This explains why UKIP is rising; it is both anti-Tory and anti-socialist.

        Labour needs to ditch democratic socialism, despite what Blair’s Clause IV says and embrace social democracy.

        Germany’s version of the Labour Party got into government after 1945 only after it ditched state socialism. Blair ditched socialism and enjoyed 3 election victories.

        Labour knows the roadmap and needs to get a grip.

      • jeremy Morfey

        The revolution that took place in the Labour Party that pushed Jeremy Corbyn to the fore has also happened to the Liberal Democrats, and for precisely the same reason. The equivalent there to Corbyn is Tim Farron, well-liked by the grass roots, who distanced himself from the Coalition with the Tories, and is now being rewarded by what’s left of his party. I can actually see quite a profitable engagement, friendship even, between Corbyn and Farron. The ‘respectable’ wing of the party – Farron, WIlliams, Mulholland and Pugh (sounds like something out of Trumpton!) are all more socially traditionalist than their party, while remaining more economically compassionate, and could well dovetail in with Corbyn’s urban progressives and socialists. They should also get on with the Wilsonesque Stella Creasy, who combines pragmatism, party nous and humour.

        The Blairites seem to be more aligned with the Orange Book Liberal Democrats, the Cleggies, who lost most of their seats, and are similarly blamed by the rank-and-file for the debacle. I can see them forming a new party, which is quite amenable to going into Coalition with the Tories in 2020, should it turn out to be a dead heat.

    • Augustus

      “The ascendancy of Corbyn means the party in Parliament is effectively split.”

      And as everyone knows, a divided party is unelectable. When a leader of a party demonstrably fails to hold his party together he does the honourable thing and steps down. What will Corbyn’s excuse be, I wonder, for not doing so?

  • The moral dustbin

    Yet another economically illiterate article by another intellectually challenged guff-merchant-there’s no end to them. I wonder if the self-assured nonsense of the writer is subconsciously influenced by a smidgeon denied fear that Corbyn represents a bit more of where we are than the world he takes as reality based on the cronies he mixes with.

    He dismisses PQE with no real understanding of the theoretical framework he also reveals himself as utter fool by suggesting that Camoron/Osborne are not driving ideology-let’s look at the ideology drive of the last five years:

    1) The poor are responsible for the housing benefit bill (not the bank created bubble of course)

    2) WE need to pat of the deficit by austerity which has the opposite effect (remember Keynes: Governments need to spend to save-households don’t work like this of course so don’t confuse the two!)

    3) The bedroom Tax created the poor as social pariahs meme and is an attempt to undermine social housing so the greasy landlords can get in there.

    4) More fire sales of public assets-more benefits flowing to Osborne’s hedge fund owning best man

    5) TTIP more power to the elbow of transnational capital and thoroughly anti-democratic.

    The list could go on – this article is barely better than a series of cavernous eructations.

  • hdb

    The Conservatives HAVE to support a living wage for financial reasons. It is not merely a political tactic. The vast majority of housing benefit is paid to people who are in work. That is, they are not being paid enough to afford their rent. Some benefits no doubt go to scroungers but less than people would like to imagine. A huge amount is effectively a subsidy for employers. If the Conservatives seriously want to reduce the deficit that has to end.

  • Andrew Baxter

    Fantastic, we can continue to enjoy government by the so-called Conservative Party, aka Blairism.

    Also, the gender pay gap is a myth, so Cameron will struggle to make a push on it when it does not exist.

  • MrFGordon

    Corbyn will move the Overton window over to the left, normalising commies, anarchists, and a new left militancy. Don’t try to meet them in the middle, do as they have done, play on their home turf.


  • njt55

    Tories (and I’m one of them) should not be complacent – Corby’s ideas on re-nationalisation have resonance with a good number of people, most of whom are too young to know how poorly utilities and railways were run under public ownership. If he manages to mobilise the disaffected he might even be able to spring an electoral surprise. Write him off at your peril.

    • Charles Turner

      The vast majority of youngsters under the age of 30 in London are likely to vote for someone that goes for massive housebuilding programmes. At the moment we have many university graduates who are professiobals, that are several years into their careers that can only afford a room in a rented house. Thes people broswe new media rather than the established right wing press. If Corbyn brings this up week in and week out, he will find many supporters.

  • John Carins

    Corbyn will take the Labour party back to the days of Michael Foot. It’s history repeating itself. Will the Tories learn and not let them back as they did before? I doubt it; they too will eventually screw up.

  • GraveDave

    Labour lost the last election because the voters didn’t trust the party with their money and the nation’s finances.

    Yet for the record, they still managed it better than your lot have so far – right?

    • Charles Turner

      This is what the right wing press have told us and we are supposed to believe it. I am not so sure. If we had 4 or 5 news papers that were to the left would it have been different. Imagine if real issues had been hot topics in the press like:

      a. The richest peoples wealth have increased by 121% since the banking crisis. Yet it is austerity for the poor and bonus time for the rich.
      b That kids in school will be worse off than their parents
      c. There is no shortgage of land in the UK and the housing crisis could be fixed in a few years with large scale housing.
      d. That the right has only benefited the real rich,
      e. Nobody on an average wage could ever afford to buy a one bed flat in london,
      f. We have the most expensive student fees in Europe yet places like Poland it is free, yet we are the 5th wealthiest country in the world.

      Politicians seem to think the press makes a massive difference, look at the texts with kisses from Cameron to Rebekka Brooks. Look how Blair courted the press.
      Also remember headline “It’s The Sun Wot Won It” in 1992. This was when against all the odds Major got in.

      I think the right press won the election and they also wanted to win the Labourship leader election. However, if they keep up the attacks on Corbyn over the next few years he will either sink or swim. If he swims he may well pick up a new following of disillusioned voters who turn away from the popular media.

  • I feel that a major element is missing from this otherwise fine analysis and that’s the fact that 2-party politics is dying. whether or not Corbyn wins, Labour is now so firmly in the grip of middle-class liberals that it’s becoming clear to more and more working-class people that the party is offering them nothing. In the past, this was no problem, but now, a replacement exists in the form of anti-immigration UKIP. And with the working-class being the big losers from uncontrolled migration, their message is resonating louder by the day.

    If Labour finds itself grappling with the SNP and greens for the nutcase far-left vote, there is every possibility that UKIP could take the north in the way the SNP took Scotland. It’s hit the post so many times now that one of these days, it’s going to get lucky, and that becomes more likely the less electable Labour is.

  • tohellwithit

    ‘Indeed, the very sight of him will awaken folk memories in the British electorate. ‘….of another radical no hoper from the past..what’s the name…F…F..F..Thatcher! That’s it!

  • perdix

    If concerns over migration persist for the next few years, it will be Theresa May who will benefit. She hasn’t had much success lately for reasons beyond her control but she has the right attitude.

  • Rob Harris

    To slightly misquote Lady Thatcher ( reach for the garlic and make a sign of the cross); “The trouble with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s
    Churchill is attributed with this quote; “The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal division of blessings, while the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal division of misery.”
    Mr Corbyn, bless him, is hell bent on validating both quotes.

  • smoke me a kipper

    After the Out campaign win the EU referendum, Cameron will be forced to resign. The Tory Party will be torn apart. SNP will demand and perhaps win a second independence vote. Chaos will follow as there is no exit plan. There will be a general election in 2018, the result of which is impossible to predict from the relative stability of 2015. Corbyn may well be the next PM

  • evad666

    Welcome to the worlds of the fatuous left:-
    and of course two pensioners assulted in their Kent Home by Africans.

  • pat

    Vote for Jeremy, you know it makes sense.

  • MrFGordon

    The point of Corbyn is to drag the Overton Window leftwards, selling high to reach a reduced settlement: a new centre left platform for the labour party post 2020.

  • Jaria1

    Is it possible that moderate Labour are showing us what we get if we dont vote for them!