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Devon Malcolm

Brexit

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I think Corbyn has served his purpose, in producing the most genuinely left-wing major party manifesto in decades, one of the largest electoral endorsements of socialist policies in decades, getting young people interested in politics, getting many older Labour voters back on side, and generally dragging part of the conversation further to the left. But the longer he holds on now, the more damage he's doing, and the more that good work is being undone.

As for his position on the EU - it's easy to forget in the narrative of Brexit that there are valid left-wing reasons to leave the EU. I still occasionally pick up a copy of the Morning Star, and they're staunchly in favour of leaving the EU, but on very different grounds to the Tories. Tony Benn (and "Corbynism" is little more than warmed over Benn-ite politics) was extremely anti-EU, and admitted that getting Britain out of the EU would involve some very uneasy alliances. My feeling, though, is that while there are valid left wing arguments for leaving the EU, there are no valid left wing arguments for doing so under an increasingly right wing Tory government while our closest ally is an isolationist, far-right, increasingly erratic President of the USA. The solution should be to reform from within, and approach the issue from a position of strength at a later date.

1 minute ago, Mr_Danger said:

They need their own version of that gimpy Rory the Tory twat. Only self aware and less gimpy. Preferably a bit Jewish too.

Surely that's just Ed Milliband?

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30 minutes ago, Dead Mike said:

As far as Corbyn’s voting history & Eurosceptic views being publicly available, of course they were. This doesn’t mean that people actually looked it up or cared. You know as well as I do that in the current political climate facts & evidence play little importance in shaping beliefs. If this were the case Brexit wouldn’t be happening at all.

Ah, okay. I wasn't all that sure if that kind of information was publicly available at the time when you said it was provably not the case. If it was then the young people who were shocked to find out his stance on the EU should probably have looked into it a bit more. By not doing so and voting for him anyway they're almost as bad as those who vote for Boris because he has funny hair and sounds like he should be in an episode of Jeeves & Wooster. As I mentioned, I'm not what could be described as a political person by any stretch (especially now), but even I knew that Corbyn had very strong anti-EU leanings.

 

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Labour could elect pretty much any leader and he/she would probably be portrayed as the second coming of Chairman Mao. Just look at how "Red" Ed was treated ffs, and he was probably just about left of center.

Politics is completely fucked. Decades of division and poison is finally biting us all in the arse.

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3 hours ago, The King Of Swing said:

ITV debate.

Glad that no sharp instruments are within reaching distance. Truly embarrassing.

Such a bumbling idiot. Kicking the can must be a bet he’s having with a mate

Edited by Hannibal Scorch

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9 minutes ago, The King Of Swing said:

Both are absolutely awful and the audience isn't much better.

Don't think Johnson has given a single answer yet. Fucking state of things.

Last time I saw someone dodging bullets like that was when I recently re-watched The Matrix

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Well that was an hour that I'll never get back.

Has Trump hit the red button yet?

Edit.

And now the US has cancelled trade talks.

giphy.gif

Edited by The King Of Swing
Because the Tories are cunts.

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11 hours ago, Carbomb said:

I've said it before that I think this country is for the most part right-leaning, which, in a distorting political climate like this, tends to be magnified, leading to a strengthening of the extreme right. The main worry for me is that, in the past, the right was kept in relative check by a more militant left, but it's been so decimated by Thatcherism and 40 years of the politics that have stemmed from her legacy that it's not doing that any more. Not in the mainstream at least.

I disagree here - I think the right wing was kept in check by the centre ground.  That's where most voters naturally lie, slightly to the left or slightly to the right.  The largest majorities come when a political party appeals to that broad church.  New Labour were able to seize power and keep it by leaving some of Labour's "red lines" in the past and appearing progressive and economically sensible.  The militant left were what made them unelectable for a decade plus.  Cameron was also a centrist politician who was able to ignore the right of his party mainly by having enough moderate MPs to get things done.

It's when, as now, both parties retreat to their extremes that things get really fucked.

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I don't think Cameron was that centrist. Him and Osborne laid the groundwork for Brexit thanks to their austerity and privatisation fanaticism. They privatised everything. They cut thousands from the police. Then when their years of shafting the poor came home to roost, he had to promise the EU referendum to avoid losing seats to UKIP, thinking there'd be another hung parliament and he wouldn't have to go through with it. Then he lost it and fucked off. He just sounded competent, unlike the entire Tory front bench since then. He's maybe not as fascist as Theresa "go home" May, but she was his home secretary for pretty much his entire run, so he's guilty by association. A wolf in sheep's clothing with a face like a whoopi cushion. 

It's telling that Corbyn's middlingly left-ish ideas, like publicly owned utilities and the rich paying slightly more tax, now see him blithely labelled as an extremist, whilst since becoming leader he's jettisoned his verifiably more "extreme" views on the monarchy and nuclear weapons (and even the EU) in the name of pragmatism and (puke) "electability". 

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6 hours ago, hallicks said:

It's telling that Corbyn's middlingly left-ish ideas, like publicly owned utilities and the rich paying slightly more tax, now see him blithely labelled as an extremist...

It's a useful litmus test though.  Anyone that starts banging on about the "far left" when talking about Labour is chatting shit.

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1 hour ago, johnnyboy said:

It's a useful litmus test though.  Anyone that starts banging on about the "far left" when talking about Labour is chatting shit.

100%.As I posted earlier, the last Labour manifesto was slightly left of centre with no 'hard left' policies whatsoever. How many voters actually read manifestos though? The majority let 'the news' tell them what's in it. 

The problem is that in politics (& especially in the current climate) it's perception that matters, not facts. This is anecdotal but my mum stood as a Labour councillor in the recent local elections (in Stoke On Trent), & for the 2 months prior to the vote when knocking on doors the resounding message was 'I've always voted Labour but I won't vote for Corbyn'. When pressed as to why most people couldn't quantify it. They'd bought into the media narrative & simply didn't trust him, to the point where they either weren't going to vote or would begrudgingly vote Tory.

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Renationalising industries is hardly "slightly left of centre".  Don't get me wrong, I approve of the idea but it's very much against the mainstream of both national and international thinking of the last 50 years or so.   You're right that the last Labour manifesto isn't far left or anything, but Corbyn has successfully moved the party's thinking back into genuine left wing politics again.

I do understand people's misgivings over Corbyn though, and it's nothing to do with antisemitism or any of that shit that's been thrown at him.  The way he's been running the party is the problem.  Setting up a party within a party (Momentum), stifling debate on the National Executive, threats of deselection against sitting and longstanding MPs.  He has set the party on fire with this civil war against the more moderate, Blairite wing, and it's consumed all the energy and focus of the party.  And his prevarication over Brexit has looked particularly weak.  Labour should be absolutely destroying the Tories in the polls now, at a time when a strong opposition is most needed.  But no, it's more important to sneak his mates back into the party after suspension for antisemitism - as if that wouldn't generate tons of bad press.  It's just stupid politics.

I was a huge Corbyn fan when he was first elected leader, I thought he'd be a breath of fresh air in British politics.  He's squandered all that goodwill and not even won an election.

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12 hours ago, Loki said:

I disagree here - I think the right wing was kept in check by the centre ground.

Everyone else has covered the other points, but I should clarify that I was talking pre-Thatcher. Post-Thatcher, the centre ground may have been the main opposition to the right, but seeing as they were both pushing the same economic agenda, from my perspective there isn't all that much difference.

1 hour ago, Loki said:

Renationalising industries is hardly "slightly left of centre".  Don't get me wrong, I approve of the idea but it's very much against the mainstream of both national and international thinking of the last 50 years or so.  

Given the sheer number of nationally-run industries across continental Europe and the success they've experienced, that is demonstrably not true. These countries even have a better, more established framework and infrastructure for enabling state-run companies to prosper. French universities, for example, offer degrees in how to run nationalised industries, because they have long recognised that the necessary skills to run them at a profit are different enough from those required to run private ones.

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2 hours ago, Loki said:

The way he's been running the party is the problem.  Setting up a party within a party (Momentum), stifling debate on the National Executive, threats of deselection against sitting and longstanding MPs.

Any of the genuine left-wing parties I've been part of in the past operated in that manner. Socialist groups are notorious for their clique-like behaviour and their intolerance for people who don't toe the line, it's part of the reason why they tend to fail.

You're either on board with how the hierarchy want things done, or you're maybe not a "proper socialist" after all.

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