What This Nation Needs Now Is An Active Opposition ....

Mick Hall calls for an active opposition in British politics. Mick Hall is a Marxist blogger @ Organized Rage.

What this Nation needs now is an active opposition at Westminster, not a government in waiting.
As much as anything, the daily cacophony of pro-Corbyn noise on Twitter and all those packed meetings symbolise something beautifully simple: people refusing to do what they’re told, which is surely the stuff of democracy at its most raw and thrilling. The choice, as many see it, is not between imminent electoral salvation and oblivion but two rather more complex outcomes: the election of another empty politician who will enact their own version of the Ed Miliband tragedy or the hope that Labour might reassert its essential values, and begin finding out what exactly 21st-century leftwing politics might actually entail – with the participation of people like those who--John Harris

When the spoon-fed Westminster elites claim if elected a Corbyn led Labour Party will never win another general election they are totally missing the point. When Senior LP MP's repeat this nonsense it tells us more about them than how the electorate might vote in 2020. Their neo liberal blind spot makes them oblivious as to why so many party members are supporting Jeremy.

What the country needs today is an opposition worthy of the name, not a government in waiting, an opposition that takes on and exposes the Tory Government at every turn, both within parliament and the country at large. More and more people are coming to see Corbyn as just the man to do that, not least because he has spent a life time holding power to account.

Labour lost the last election because for the five years of the Coalition it failed to do just that. And by not doing so it lost the support of its core electoral base, the working class and the more progressive elements of the British middle class. 

The Party lost Scotland because Alex Salmond was not only an opportunist but also a brilliant political tactician who instinctively saw an opportunity for his party and reached out for it with both hands, dragging his party leftwards so it could fill Labour's shoes north of the border. When Ed Miliband joined the Tories in the independence campaign he ensured the slow demise of Labour in Scotland. When he shut the door on an SNP-LP coalition he gifted the SNP a landslide victory.

Under the poisonous influence of the neo liberal Blairites with help from the Murdoch media, the LP became a hollow shell, the trade unions and local parties lost influence as power was transferred to the centre. Within that centre, like minded careerists rebuilt the party in their own image. Shallow, publicity seekers, young middle class careerists whose political beliefs reflected those of the business, political and media elites of the day. Which has made them unable to think outside the narrow confines of the neo liberal box. 

Hence their total confusion about the current popularity of Jeremy Corbyn.

Given the opportunity Blair, along with his acolytes are the type of people who would have climbed the greasy pole whether the system were democratic, communist, or fascistic. The more corrupt the system the bigger the opportunity for such people to rise. One only has to see the massive democratic deficit at the heart of the UK state and the revolving door used by senior government ministers and CEOs to understand it's corrupt to the core.

Their type do not set public opinion let alone help create it. They blow with what they regard as the strongest prevailing political wind and within the Westminster bubble which they habitat that has been neo liberalism.

In an anti Corbyn spoiler the Guardian reported on an open letter written by seven defeated Labour candidates who stood in key marginal constituencies in May. Not one had anything new to offer, they all to varying degrees sing from the neo liberal song book. 

According to them Miliband failed to: 

"Resonate with voters and addressed only the ‘needy and greedy.’

"We won’t win over hard-working people if we demonise the private sector in which so many people work." 

 "We need the humility to listen to the people of the country, as well as our party, to talk about contribution and responsibility as well as equality and fairness.”

“We were left with a cold, utilitarian narrative that was ultimately based on adversity between the classes"

Any of the above could have been, and probably was said by Tory candidates during the General Election campaign. Is it any wonder Corbyn is gaining support when you cannot get a cigarette paper between these LP candidates beliefs and their Tory opposite numbers. Most of these individuals were parachuted into these seats by the LP leadership. Many if not all believe austerity and benefit cuts are necessary. Their only real differences with the Tories is one of degrees. 

How can such people oppose Cameron's government effectively when they clearly agree with many of the policies it's implementing?

As I wrote above what this Nation needs is an active opposition at Westminster and in the country at large, not a government in waiting, if Corbyn is elected leader that will evolve with time. 

* Jeremy's policies on child care, women's rights, etc can be read here.

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Anthony McIntyre

Former IRA prisoner, spent 18 years in Long Kesh. Free Speech advocate, writer, historian, humanist, and researcher.

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