The latest opinion poll shows Boris Johnson heading for a landslide victory in the coming General Election. Britain is on the verge of electing the most right wing government in generations, if not ever. The Tories have climbed to 47% in the latest Opinium/Observer poll, with Labour on 28% and the Lib Dems collapsing to 12%. It’s all over bar the shouting, I’m afraid.
The myth that Jeremy Corbyn was a breath of fresh air was somehow sustained throughout the 2017 election, aided and abetted by Theresa May’s woeful campaigning. The truth that Corbyn is nothing more than a relic from the failed hard left Labour politics of the 1980s has now fed through to the electorate. Labour now faces a crushing defeat.
Even his closest supporters, if they were to be honest, would admit Corbyn is not a natural leader. He is a terrible public speaker, he is a poor parliamentary performer who cannot think on his feet and he has never had an original idea in his life. All he has to offer is a reheated and steroid-assisted version of the Labour manifesto from 1983 that handed Margaret Thatcher a landslide victory and handed the country a further 14 years of Tory rule. That, I fear, is what we face on 12 December.
Corbyn still retains a vocal minority support around the land, although nowadays plays his greatest hits in small halls rather than arenas. What drew so many people towards him in 2017 is no longer there. His fans still sing “Oh, Jeremy Corbyn” but the rest of the country, which is most of the country, is not impressed.
For Corbyn’s allies, the important thing will not be victory for Labour but to protect the stranglehold they have got over it. Millionaire Jon Lansman’s privately owned party-within-a-party, Momentum, and UNITE’s Len McCluskey have both declared there can be no way back for mainstream Labour MPs and supporters. After Corbyn’s inevitable defeat, there will be a time-limited opportunity to take back Labour or let it go forever. The latter looks inevitable.
I’m resigned to it, to be honest. Having voted Labour in every election since 1979, I simply cannot bring myself to do so this time. I fell for the idea that in 2017, Corbyn’s Labour was our only hope of either getting the country a less damaging Brexit deal or no Brexit at all, trying to forget that Corbyn is a lifelong opponent of the EU. Two years later, we all know for sure that Corbyn is a leaver. His obfuscation and slippery evasion has fooled some people, as it did me two years ago, but the truth is not very far out there. It is certainly safe for Labour leavers to support Corbyn. Brexit is what he believes in.
Now we will get Brexit in its hardest form, a massive rupture from our closest trading partner, accompanied by a fundamental deregulation of the country and it’s economy, a small state, low tax haven for the filthy rich and unfettered English nationalism which could ultimately tear the UK apart.
I’ll probably waste my vote, with zero enthusiasm, by putting a cross next to the Lib Dems. They have to date failed dismally in acknowledging their role in propping up David Cameron’s horrible austerity-driven government, as well as showing some contrition and apologising for some of the worst excesses in which they were closely involved. And all the evidence, from polling and anecdotes, suggest Jo Swinson’s failure to deal with it will cost the Lib Dems dear. I am deeply sorry about that but for all her other qualities, I can’t forgive her for that.
So that’s the choice before us all: disaster capitalism versus disaster socialism and nothing in between. And what we are going to get, I fear, is disaster capitalism of the worst kind.
Ed Miliband has a lot to answer for by opening up Labour’s leadership elections to people who paid three quid as do the MPs, like Sadiq Khan, who nominated Corbyn in order to have a different point of view on the ballot paper. That ended well, didn’t it?
We Brits have made fools of ourselves with the Brexit fiasco and now we appear to be doing it all over again by electing a liar, a shyster and a charlatan called Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson as prime minister. The public gets what the public wants. Good luck, everyone. We are going to need a lot of it.