What ever happens on June 8, the Blairites, columnist glitterati, TV talking heads, and media oligarchs must not be allowed to hound Corbyn out of office
Win or loose after the general election there will be an attempt by the Blairites to remove Jeremy Corbyn from the leadership. Almost unbelievably this process has already started even though we are in the midst of a general election campaign. Last weekend Tom Baldwin a former LP press officer, appeared on ITV's Peston show and not only attacked Corbyn as unfit to lead the party, he also ridiculed on air Emily Thornberry, the senior shadow cabinet minister when she announced Labour would tax those who earn more than 80K a year.
It's worth noting Baldwin, and his wife an heiress are close friends of Alastair Campbell, the Blairite author of the dodgy dossier on Saddam's WMDs. The wealthy couple apparently live in a house on Highbury Fields, North London, worth in the region of £4 million. Like most of the leading Blairites they believe an 80K a year income is small change. So it is hardly surprising they side with the few not the many.
Before that the ever opportunistic Sion Simon was doing the media rounds blaming Corbyn for his defeat in the West Midlands metro mayor contest. Never mind Simon is one of the Blairite candidates who have whitewashed Corbyn off their election leaflets and refused to campaign alongside him. Having what they call 'a local strategy' which in reality means disowning the party's leader from their campaigns.
After 8th of June win or lose it's imperative Corbyn stays on as party leader as he has been targeted by the mainstream media (MSM) and their creatures within the LP in a most dishonest and dangerous way. These bullies, braggarts, TV talking heads, and media oligarchs must not be allowed to negate the will of the LP membership.
As Roy Greenslade, not a Corbyn supporter wrote:
Corbyn has not been given a free pass.[unlike May] None of his mistakes has been excused. There was no honeymoon period after Labour members elected him against the wishes of the majority of the parliamentary party. The split, a yawning chasm, in fact, was an invitation to the press to do its worst.
And I’m not only referring to rightwing newspapers. Mainstream media as a whole took its gloves off and Corbyn’s electoral hopes have been doomed from day one. He was “a great leap backwards”, said the Mail. Beware this “absurd Marxist”, said the Express, while the Daily Telegraph referred to his “divisive ideology” and “atavistic hostility to wealth and success”. And the Sun? It just called him “bonkers.”There was scepticism too from the liberal left. The Independent thought he would not persuade middle England to accept his policies. Neither the Daily Mirror nor the Guardian greeted him with open arms.
Meanwhile, the overall anti-Corbyn agenda, repeated week upon week and month after month, was one that broadcasters were unable to overlook, despite their belief in balance and adherence to impartiality.[sic] News bulletin reports reflected the headlines. Current affairs programmes picked up on the themes. That’s how media narratives are constructed.
I am not saying that this criticism has not been deserved. I am merely pointing to its existence and that the resulting outcome at the ballot box has therefore been a foregone conclusion. Recent television vox pops, which are so rarely a reliable barometer of public opinion, have betrayed the depth of the anti Corbyn climate.
What we have been witnessing since late 2015 is a concerted attempt to bury Jeremy because he offers a real alternative to the neoliberal status quo, something which has been absent from the government and opposition benches at Westminster for decades.
If they succeed in removing Jeremy, who will represent the working classes, and those least able to defend themselves? who will protect them from the ravages of the free market, who will voice their fears and hopes? If it's not a Corbyn led Labour Party it will not be long before that space is filled by unsavory elements on the far right. They have already been circling. Today's not like 1997 when the Blairites first came to power the British economy was on the rise. Today it's on the skids.
Only Corbyn Labour offers real alternatives to the right wing neoliberal agenda propagated by both the Tories and the Blairites. Beyond the bluster of the stump both agree on globalisation, free markets, austerity, a privatised health care system, and so called humanitarian intervention which allows the writ of the US political, media, and industrial complex to run wild across the world.
Corbyn must be defended vigorously as party leader: this is not about one man, it's about much more than that. It's about defending a belief there is a better way of governing this nation. It doesn't have to be the Tory or Blairite way. There is a third socialist way and it's due to his sheer tenacity that this is now back on the national agenda
If we manage to keep Jeremy in place the Blairites will eventually up and leave. Jeremy is not a young man. In time, and in an orderly way, he will hand the flame of socialist renewal to a new generation and it will be for them to build a land worth living in, not as it is now for millions of our citizens a life of drudgery and want, of merely existing.
As to the result on June 8 we shall see, but whatever it is turning the Labour Party ship around was always going to be a long game.