Things just get better, don’t they?

Ralph Miliband, a Marxist academic, founded a small group of political activists who met at Tony Benn’s house in London, and included the then newly-elected young MP, Mr Corbyn.
According to a 2011 biography of Ed Milband, Ralph tried to re-engage with Labour during the 1980s in collaboration with Benn, himself a famous Left-winger.
The book, Ed – the Milibands and the Making of a Labour Leader, describes how Ralph saw his role as helping to prepare a practical socialist programme of policies for the Bennites “should they assume control of the Labour Party”.
With this in mind, Ralph created the Independent Left Corresponding Society (ILCS) with Benn. The group, which met on Sunday evenings at Benn’s house included Mr Corbyn, Left-wing writers, and the academic, Andrew Glyn, who was a friend of the Miliband family and taught Ed at Oxford University.

Go on Jerry!

50 Northern seats for Ukip…..

53 thoughts on “Things just get better, don’t they?”

  1. Bloke in Costa Rica

    On the face of it, letting Corbyn enter the race to ‘broaden the field’ looks like the greatest unforced error in modern British political history. It’s so egregious a fuck-up that despite my natural disinclination to believe in conspiracy theories, I have to wonder if there wasn’t something ulterior going on. I mean, they can’t be that thick, can they? Sure, this is Labour, and by definition the anencephalic cabbage quotient is higher than normal, but come on, really?

  2. UKIP ( and other parties ) in the last month seem to be doing exactly what Napoleon would have done
    “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.”

  3. You lot think Labour shouldn’t elect Corbyn, but how many of you lot want Labour to win anyway?
    Since the answer to that question is ‘very few or none’ why should any Labour supporter take any notice of you?
    I heard Corbyn on the Jeremy Vine show a couple of days ago: calm and clear about what he wants to achieve. Vine himself said that the show had received a lot of positive comments about Corbyn’s brief appearance.
    I think you’d better get ready to put forward a reasoned response to Corbyn’s political ideas. At the moment he is offering more clarity and more principle than anyone else except Farage and Sturgeon.
    And there are already tens of thousands of people out there who like that.
    Sneer and smear if you want to, but unless you engage in principled discussion then I fear you are in for a shock.

  4. Eh?

    I want Corbyn to win. To be Labour party leader at least, not PM.

    Because I’m a Faragiste…..

  5. James Strong

    if you need a ‘reasoned response’ to Corbyn’s ideas you are obviously very new to this blog- for its entire duration it has been offering reasons why his ideas are batshit insane – I’d suggest you exit the bubble and brush up on some outline history!

  6. “I think you’d better get ready to put forward a reasoned response to Corbyn’s political ideas”

    We already have nearly 200 years of economic thinking that shows that Corbyn and his supporters are entirely wrong on, for example, price controls. It is them that have ignored this.

    There is also more than a century of practical evidence that their ideas end up in disaster wherever they are implemented. Again, they ignore that.

  7. You can be calm and clear explaining how termites control international finance. It’s the message which counts, not the delivery. And his message is the same one which has failed over and over again, with consequences ranging from mere poverty and economic depression to millions murdered.

    Why do they keep on getting another go?

  8. I’d have thought the best thing for UKIP is a metropolitan modern London type running the Labour party, not an old style Stalinist like Corbyn. The reason UKIP are making headway into the Labour vote in the north is down to the traditional Labour vote being economically socialist but socially conservative. All the rainbow coalition and pro-immigrant stuff that Islington Labour espouse doesn’t play well in the working mens clubs of Doncaster. Get an old style ‘Bash the rich, nationalise everything’ Labour leadership and manifesto and I don’t think UKIP would get a look in.

  9. Also
    – ‘I heard Corbyn ….. Calm
    And clear about what he wants to achieve’- Really?

    – he talked about the destruction of Israel and the end of the Jews?
    – He described the mass expropriation of property by the state?
    – He explained how no one would be allowed to leave the UK on holiday or use personal transport other than a bike?
    – How his plan for the destruction of the armed forces would lead to an ISIS takeover?m

    And people responded positively? – fascinating stuff!

  10. I think Corbyn will turn out to be a problem for Cameron and the Conservatives. His ideas are old-fashioned socialism and he comes across as entirely sincere in holding them. For all Ed Miliband’s leaning to the left he never sounded sincere about anything, and his predecessors were just as insincere.

    If Corbyn becomes Labour leader I expect UK politics will be recalibrated along more traditional lines of Labour being socialist and people expecting the Conservatives to be conservatives – none of this wrestling over the perceived centre any more. The problem being that many Conservatives simply aren’t these days and Cameron is chief amongst the Blue Labour lot. If the Conservatives don’t respond to that shift they may end up sorely surprised at the next election.

  11. If Labour wish to win, they should probably go with Yvette – who is competent on the economy and a decent speaker and would probably be a decent leader. Andy – Mascaraman – Burnham is a stupider version of Ed Milicret, how such a total lightweight ever became the favourite is beyond me. Liz Kendall has the most sensible policies in terms of trying to win – from the centre – but she is a crap speaker and would be a terrible leader – it’s astonishing that someone this crap has become the Blairite standard bearer and she’s only polling 20%, how the Blairites have fallen. Corbyn is batshit insane.

    Go Jezza! Destroy the Labour party, we’re all cheering you on.

  12. Bloke in Costa Rica

    The idea that a Corbyn win would present a serious threat is predicated on the idea that the Blairite wing of the party would meekly accept it and rally round him to present a united front. It’s much more likely that it would be schismatic in a mirror image of the SDP breaking away in 1981. I also think there’s a large overestimate by a lot of people as to the degree of support a hard-Left party would attract in the UK. Look at Greece, people say, or look at Podemos. Well yes, but the UK is not Greece or Spain.

  13. sackcloth and ashes

    ‘I think you’d better get ready to put forward a reasoned response to Corbyn’s political ideas’.

    Well speaking personally, I think that someone who considers Venezuela to be a success story and who is a fanboy for a militia currently working as a death squad for Assad in the Syrian civil war might be considered to have taken leave of both his senses and his moral compass.

    Is that ‘reasoned’ enough for you?

  14. The North will happily vote Corbynist. Even if the Farage fringe picks up a few white working class votes, the diverse population is, bar a couple of Tory MPs, solidy labour.

  15. Well, there really are some precious people viewing this blog.
    And those people seem to be incapable of understanding my advice/ warning about how to deal with Corbyn.
    You don’t have to convince me about the policies of supporting Hamas, praising Venezuela, getting rid of Trident.
    But you do have to convince others.
    If you haven’t realised that Corbyn comes across as someone who is truly standing up for what he believes and that this is attractive to many people, partly because so few politicians are believed to do that, then you need to get out of your circle-jerk and open your eyes.
    The term ‘batshit insane’ has appeared twice in these comments.
    If you think language like that is an effective way to oppose Corbyn’s ideas then he is not the only one who is batshit insane.
    I am a UKIP voter, and a soft, not pure, libertarian. I

  16. Oops, hit the wrong button.
    I don’t want to see a Corbyn-led government any more than you do, but I have recognised that his stance, of being clear about what he believes and aims for, is proving attractive to many people.
    It is batshit insane not to recognise that and to repeat any insults along the lines that his policies are batshit insane.

  17. Bloke in Costa Rica

    You can really, really sincerely believe that what the country needs is for you to drown kittens in a sack while wearing a Labour rosette, but that will only get you so far with the electorate, even oop North.

  18. Hmm, well once there’s a resounding majority vote for Britain to remain in the EU next year, UKIP will become surplus to requirements. Now things don’t get much better than that! 🙂

  19. James – this is our little place to circle jerk, but it’s not the only place we interact with other people and I can sound terribly reasoned if I try.

    Corbyn won’t win the Labour leadership, but if he does he won’t be PM.

    It’s not for us to rebut his ideas , anymore than it’s for us to rebut the existence of pixies, but if and when the time is right we’ll all be in full rebuttal mode, I imagine.

  20. KJ

    I think you’re probably right about the vote, but I’m less sure than I was.

    Greece has opened the issue up and if you think that will all blow away before the referendum you’re likely to be disappointed.

  21. Corbyn has already stated he doesn’t want to be PM, just interim leader whilst Labour sort out some policies. Makes sense.

  22. Also, I think the reason Corbyn resonates with voters is he’s plain speaking: a left wing version of Farage if you like. Anti-austerity is a simple enough message, the guy actually believes HM opposition’s purpose is to oppose government policies, I mean can you believe that?!

    Liked when he challenged Nige to endorse a minimum wage of £10 an hour to test his working class hero credentials. Not sure if he’s got back to him on that yet?

  23. How will his belief in open borders and unlimited immigration go down in the North?

    He isn’t “Old Labour”. He isn’t a Blairite of course, but he is light years from Jim Callaghan too. He is ‘old’ Labour in the sense that he believes every batshit crazy idea the Labour crazies believed in during the late-1970s.

  24. Perhaps when he presents the facts and does politics a little differently, ie. not the divide and rule the tories and many on the right are so fond of, well it’ll be interesting. In the meantime, it does seem he has not only the right of his party but also the wider right running scared.

    That can only be a good thing.

  25. Bloke in Costa Rica

    How in the ever-living fuck do you paint the salivating on the Conservatarian Right at the prospect of a Corbyn leadership as “running scared”? If “hugging oneself with glee” is synonymous with “apprehensive” then I suggest you invest in a new thesaurus. It’s not like people here are whistling past the graveyard. They are actively, repeatedly stating that they would like to see Corbyn installed on the bridge of the SS Labour Party so all the Lefties can steam into an iceberg and die.

  26. Libertarians concept of libertarianism is that all those who vehemently oppose their world view deserve to die a horrible death. Not very libertarian by any definition I’ve read in Thesaurus or any other dictionary come to that.

  27. Bloke in Costa Rica

    You seem unfamiliar with the concept of metaphor as well, unless you thought I was actually proposing that Labour charter an ocean liner and go iceberg hunting in the North Atlantic*. You see, “steam into an iceberg and die” is a rhetorical device. The words do not mean literally what they say. Shockingly, the word “irony” does not mean “made of iron” (well, it does, but not principally). The special pleading and whistling past the graveyard is emanating entirely from the Left on this issue. The only places I’ve seen it seriously mooted that Corbyn will have any electoral appeal beyond his cabal of misfit Sparts and union troglodytes are in comments sections and the more floridly loopy bits of the Grauniad. If ever there were reverse psychology to be found, then that’s where I’d look for it. The PLP seems to be collectively shitting itself, which is I think a more realistic assessment of what a win by Tovarisch Corbyn would entail.

    * I wouldn’t stop them per se, but that doesn’t mean I think they should.

  28. Yes, I did suspect you weren’t talking literally but I can’t ever be sure with some of the loons on here. The amount of insults you managed to squeeze into your most recent comment though does suggest a certain animosity towards Mr Corbyn, can’t think why that would be given it won’t have too much of an affect on you either way over there in sunny Costa Rica…

    Look, it is simply my view that politics has been lacking principled politicians for ages. You righties have your poster boy Nige, now we lefties have ours, Jez. The current model of governmental politics is decidedly postmodern because it concentrates almost exclusively on presentation. Corbyn, Farage et al speak from the heart and aren’t reliant on carefully crafted soundbites. By comparison, the others look dull and lifeless imo.

    We also have Sen. Sanders polling relatively well across the pond. Seems the neoliberal consensus is now being questioned out in the open and not before time imo!

  29. But you do have to convince others.

    I don’t think the “others” need much convincing, anyone over 45 is going to vividly remember the union and militant dominated Labour Party back when it thought chucking away our nuclear deterrent when we were on the verge of a political victory in the cold war, and still demanding nationalization when memories of the three day week and the IMF bailout were still clear.

    The ideas were loopy back then, and they still are.

    Corbyn might be sincere in his beliefs, but in that area he wouldn’t hold a candle to Michael Foot – the man who helped pen Guilty Men, but it didn’t help Labour one jot.

  30. Well the economic vandals these days are more the bosses than unions: and the latter are mostly gone now anyway except for public employees unions [which seems rather backwards to me] But even if we accept your premise that nobody over 45 would vote for Jeremy [I’m 47 and I’ll certainly be voting for him] that still leaves one hell of a lot of votes to aim for. Bearing in mind that had Labour managed to attract marginally more youth votes at the last election, they could have won.

    As for nationalisation being loopy, well the public seem to more on Jeremy’s side than yours on that one judging by most opinion polls I’ve read. But hey, listen, if i were to read comments from people such as yourself agreeing with Jeremy, then I might begin to worry. Until then, i shan’t.

  31. “You righties have your poster boy Nige, now we lefties have ours, Jez”

    Last time I looked Nigel Farage wasn’t a supporter of a political ideology that resulted in a pile of skulls 50m high in the 20th century. If Nigel Farage came out as a ‘principled’ supporter of Fascism as a way to solve all our current woes, that would be fine with you I take it?

  32. KJ – thesauruses neither define words nor are dictionaries.

    I hope Labour select ‘Jeremy’. It will be fun. You may pick up some under 45s – though all the ones I know are right wing – but you’ll lose a lot of over 45s so on balance it would be fine.

  33. @ Jim

    Aah, the old if you’re a left winger you’re a mass murder apologist trope. haven’t heard that one in a while. Right wing governments have pristine records of course, never murdered anyone.

    And what do you mean IF?… 😀

  34. Libertarians concept of libertarianism is that all those who vehemently oppose their world view deserve to die a horrible death.

    Nice strawman you’ve got there. Other than suggesting that some statists are the ones likely to wind up in a woodchipper if there were a revolution, I don’t know any libertarian who believes what you ascribe to us.

    And I hang out a lot over at reason.com.

  35. I was referring to Bloke In Costa Rica’s comment further up, where he actually stated that. He has since confirmed he was being sarcastic, which I wasn’t sure of at first since it was most uncharacteristic of him. 🙂

  36. Bloke in Costa Rica

    “can’t think why that would be given it won’t have too much of an affect on you either way over there in sunny Costa Rica…”

    Because I would still have family back behind the Iron Curtain. Because Corbyn’s politics are evil and therefore by extension so is he. Because it’s been 98 years since the Russian Revolution set in motion the hecatombs of the 20th C. and to still espouse these ideas is flagrantly wicked. Corbyn might be ridiculous, but I don’t find him in the least bit funny.

  37. Again I’m not sure if you’re being 100% serious here, I’m assuming you can’t be as your comment is more over the top than a Kenneth Williams performance in a Carry On film. Corbyn is no Leninist, he’s at best [or worst depending on your viewpoint] a social democrat. He’s not going to nationalise every tin of beans and if you want an example of evil personified we have one already: IDS and all the sick/disabled people he’s murdered. I’m sure you’ll find a convenient excuse for that though, him being one of your lot.

  38. @KJ, most libertarians are libertarians because they want liberty (mainly liberty from taxes) for themselves only.

    That’s why you get so many social conservatives, anti-immigration types describing themselves, entirely inaccurately of course, as libertarians, Some will probably now come and froth at the mouth at me for daring to suggest they aren’t libertarians and that I should be kicked out of something for it.

    Back with UKIP, the liberal wing of that party (of which Tim is the finest and most vocal proponent) has this touchingly naive view that having a tranny in the European Parliament will gain them sufficient hipster votes and not lose them too many of the brigadiers and unreconstructed bigots that – whether they like it or not – form a key part of the core UKIP vote.

  39. @KJ

    Funnily enough, they’ve got left wing parents!

    As for Corbyn and the price of beans, when actual socialists come to power they either nationalise food immediately or eventually (as everything else fails, being fanatics they just do it harder).

    They’re about to enjoy collectivised food in Venezuela. You should visit in six to twelve months and see what it’s like.

    In the UK we are still not quite uneducated enough to believe that the government needs to set prices, and as I say I think younger people (say under 30) get this better than older.

  40. @ Interested

    Socialism will never be allowed in this country, TPTB would never allow it: the best lefties can hope for is social democracy. Which is about where Jeremy’s allegiances lie. A mixed economy. We shouldn’t be dogmatic regarding nationalisation/privatisation. Problem with many [not all] privatisations from my pov is that they have followed a crony capitalism approach instead of true competition. Energy industry and TOCs are two examples of this imv.

  41. @KJ

    I disagree re TPTB, but then you guys by definition believe in great organising power and we don’t. Who knows.

    I agree re privatisation – cronyism is as bad as nationalisation (I suppose technically it’s something like fascism).

  42. once there’s a resounding majority vote for Britain to remain in the EU next year, UKIP will become surplus to requirements.

    I would have thought one only need to look back a few months at the Scottish referendum and the SNP’s subsequent General Election performance to realise b) won’t necessarily follow a)

  43. @ Corvus Umbranox

    I said if UKIP suffered a resounding defeat. Scots Independence was only narrowly defeated, despite the full weight of the establishment thrown behind the BT campaign. So not quite the same thing.

  44. Bloke in Costa Rica

    I use Corbyn’s words and deeds to point out what he is, which is an unregenerate hard left friend of terrorists and totalitarians. It was something that both Peter Simple and then later Auberon Waugh pointed out years ago: that calling these people the “loony left” was to diminish just how pernicious they actually are. Now, it may be that The Powers That Be will not permit socialism in the UK, in which case they’ll have done something useful for the first time in history, but that doesn’t stop me from believing that someone who holds the set of views that Corbyn does is anything other than a monster.

    The crack about Iain Duncan-Smith is just loopy. “IDS and all the sick/disabled people he’s murdered.” Name one.

  45. “Aah, the old if you’re a left winger you’re a mass murder apologist trope. ”

    Its not a trope, its the truth. Socialism is responsible for tens of millions of deaths. People like you that support it should be ashamed of supporting an ideology that has such a blood soaked past (and future whenever it gets implemented).

    I suppose you wouldn’t be against a New National Socialist Party then? ‘Well the old National Socialist Party made a lot of mistakes, killing all those Jews wasn’t really right, but they had a lot of good ideas, you know autobahns, and trains running on time, European integration, good use of the media, social cohesion, that sort of thing. This time we’ll do it properly, promise!’

  46. Scots Independence was only narrowly defeated, despite the full weight of the establishment thrown behind the BT campaign.

    If you think that was the full weight of the establishment, wait until you see what’s coming in this one.

  47. The crack about Iain Duncan-Smith is just loopy. “IDS and all the sick/disabled people he’s murdered.” Name one

    My ex wife for one. Cerebral palsy, confined to a wheelchair , chronic dystopia. But she was still breathing so it was fuck you, were stopping your DLA get a fucking job.

    She was dead within a month. So with alll due respect, go and fuck yourself dickhead

  48. KJ

    Both cerebral palsy and chronic dystopia (I had to google it), and within the month?

    That is extraordinarily unlucky and you must be utterly devastated?

    It would be very difficult to be rationally or fair minded after that kind of awful experience.

  49. I know of others this has happened to also but yes, I will never get over it. Hardest part is knowing it was avoidable. For that I can never forgive those I hold responsible. If that makes me irrational or unfair minded, then so be it. I can live with that more than I can live with my [and more importantly my children’s] loss.

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