Cease the means of association -take it from a party who knows.
Today has been a crazy day for Left twitter. We are fragmented and commonly shouted at, this is nothing new. But today feels like yet another line which has been crossed by those who profess to be on the progressive side of politics.
I am not going to go all Nick Cohen and article-beef with those who are within their own right to disagree with me. What has occurred to me as a Lib Dem is that the so-called Moderate MPs of the named opposition and those who oppose Brexit such as left leaning journalists, are now in line for the criticisms they have repeatedly dished out to us.
But there is still time.
Lib Dems are often accused of selling out, this argument is lazy. We knew we were to lose seats, admittedly, we did not foresee just how many that would be. Considering this I am at a loss to see Labour moderates blindly making the same mistakes as we did. They are underestimating the power of the electorate and at the will of the Tories by doing so.
Today, I had a lot of Corbyn supporters inform me Charles Kennedy supported the Iraq War. This has happened to me on about five different occasions, and seemingly always from the Momentum side of Labour. This is not only wholly disrespectful to the man’s legacy, but they went further to state Corbyn was a lone wolf who was hated by the MSM. As I type this I can hear the burial grounds of Robin Cook and Attlee being danced upon.
Foolishly I replied in a Twitter blind rage to be met with quips of his alcoholism and my mentions flooded by ‘JC4PM’ style accounts of how I had been brainwashed into ‘thinking’ Charles Kennedy opposed the war and in fact lobbied for it. In the stark contrast of, well, all the evidence, ever.
This revisionism in the Labour party has gone far beyond the consumption of Kool Aid. It is a knowing spread of misinformation, all done to keep ‘their guy’ looking strong. There is no time for any sort of nuance. When I could point them to Hansard, I was informed Charles didn’t oppose the war because he ideologically didn’t oppose in full ‘imperialism’.
Ironically, Robin Cook resigned over Iraq, unlike Corbyn. That is opposing your leader when they pursue bad things in your name.
So, we now exist in a world where unless you are able to all encompassing declare your concerns on innocents dying as anti-imperialism, you are, then in fact FOR war and destruction. Got it? — Phew, okay.
I naively hoped that when Charles sadly passed people would stop attacking him and his illness, so it is with extremely heavy heart I see this abuse coming from the very people who would have been on that Anti Iraq war march.
The concerns of which he addressed are being rewritten. Anyone who takes a section of Corbyn’s light is immediately trashed, described as an opponent. Even the dead are fair game.
In last year’s snap general we witnessed the biggest critics of the opposition front benches then go to overnight supporters, this is misguided and lazy. The moderates are no longer able to articulate their own cause. We saw the same types of lethargy and ambivalence with the EU referendum, and in Hillary’s campaign. As a spectator, it seems the cause has been sacrificed at the altar of a safe Labour seat.
To allow their leader to push for Brexit, to allow Putin apologists run the brand- all of this is contrary to Labour’s own core principles, going along with this is selling out. This is the careerism. Sitting pretty because they believe if doing so long enough will lead to power. It is naive as it is selfish. The left need to be a broad church, by censoring themselves they are ensuring this does not happen. It ensures Tmay and her band of 1922 merrymen run the show.
I have some sympathies for the MPs who have been targeted and harassed by their own members, but the MPs such as my own who campaigned not to have Corbyn now act as whips for his very office. He said he would oppose Brexit, now he is one of its’ agents. Playing both the Corbyn fans and a moderate; Schrodinger’s progressive. These MPs are everything to everyone but standing up for very little where it counts.
This is selling out in fear of deselection. This is selling out at the cost of Brexit, at the cost of intelligent and effective opposition when the Tories are at their weakest.
When those such at Tom Watson post mean spirited things aimed at Liberals, it means nothing due to his cringeworthy singing of ‘Oooh, Jeremy Corbyn’ at Labour conference. So stomach churning, even those edgelords who made the Nick Clegg Sorry song would deem this too dark.
When I have felt at odds with my own party, I did not silently concede on my core principles, as a member I lobby and steer, I challenge and get challenged, I present evidence and ensure I get heard. It’s time the Labour party followed suit, (looking beyond a future snap general would be a start) or ceases to become the next punchline, as we were.
An EDM isn’t enough to appease concerns, nor will it redress the power imbalances on the NEC. The party is now run by those who turn a blind eye to the deselection of the moderates. They turn a blind eye to the harassment of others. It is naive to think these MPs will not be replaced so it is time to stand up and be counted. Some of the moderates are so complacent they haven’t even gone as far to sign the EDM, which, is perhaps just as well as I predict will do nothing.
An EDM will not buy back worried voters. It will not undo the misinformation under Milne. An EDM will not undo the abuse done onto members and activists from other parties. An EDM will not save face.
My friend a trade unionist of 20 years told me they will never vote for Labour again. This was PRIOR to Monday’s statement.
Now why am I asking my rivals to do the right thing? Why am I warning them of the mistakes of my precursors? Well, some things are more important than tribalism. Halting the Tory’s non-existent majority, opposing them on Brexit, these are every progressives hard limit. Try opposing, before it is too late!
And, to the journalists sat on their hands waiting for the red curtain to drop, try talking to other parties, other leading figures who have a vision, who have a plan. Caroline Lucas, Wera Hobhouse, Naomi Long.
The tunnel vision like optics are detrimental to progress and doing so in our name. There are future Charles Kennedys out there ready to do the right thing, ready to coherently oppose, please encourage them to do so.