It is time to act.
Andy Bowen
53

Nice try. The problem is every single point can be argued (much like those ‘facts’ generated by both sides during the referendum). It would be tedious to go through each ‘fact’ mentioned and make it stand-up differently – but very easy to do so. As with the (Andy’s) post, you’ll just have to take me on trust.

The problem is that when ‘facts’ are disputed, when you have to work too hard to make ‘the facts stand-up’, appeal is made primarily to the emotions. This seems self-evident and was a strategy very successfully used by Brexiteers and currently by Trump and now by Corbyn and his supporters. It essentially indicates that there is no rational argument, no ‘truth’ and no ‘fact’ – it’s all up for grabs. The term ‘post-factual’ seems appropriate to describe the phenomenon and the post is an exemplar. Of necessity it is an emotional appeal to ‘values’ rather than anything substantive. It totally ignores (edits out) important questions about the nature of parliamentary democracy, the nature of leadership, the mechanics of winning elections, and indeed glosses over serious concerns about some truly debasing hero-worship and blind obedience to the ‘leader’ – will I get shot for thinking ‘the leader’ is not all he’s cracked up to be? No probably not – but I bet I’ll get abused!

It does though talk about ‘values’ – without ever specifying what these are (beyond trust/obedience/loyalty). Are these the values of three state pensions? Or of payment by Iranian TV (£20,000?)? Or of refusing to share platforms with ‘non-friends’ (David Cameron) when the situation – EU ref -demanded something more altruistic? Or are these values more about the need to demonstrate how ‘pure’ the leader is (clearly he’ll only share platforms with friends like Hamas/Hezbollah, or indulge in post-factual history with other friends like Livingstone). Or perhaps these are the values of surrounding yourself with a cabal of fundamentalist conspirators – those who have long conspired to take over the Labour Party (actually people like me when I was in the sixth form way back in the 70s)?

The ‘truth’ is that Labour is now an irrelevance. It is totally split and no amount of appeal to a load of specious values can heal it – particularly when the appeal is made on the basis of faith over electability, blind obedience to ‘the leader’, and a fundamentally anti-parliamentary strategy, tactics and vision.

Bring on the split ASAP – the sooner we can get on and engage with the real world, the better.

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