We’d probably have a Labour government now if it wasn’t for Corbyn. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not saying that Corbyn is holding the party back – quite the reverse. He’s been immensely influential in reinvigorating Labour, and returning it to its social-democratic (or, if you like, socialist) roots. I’m fairly confident (if only fairly) that Labour would win a general election right now, if it came.
But that’s the crux of it. His enemies know this, or at least suspect it’s a possibility; and so can’t let him have the general election the country surely merits in present circumstances. This must be the most incompetent, corrupt and in many ways sheerly ‘nasty’ government (to use Theresa’s word) Britain has ever had. It’s also a minority one. If there had been a neoliberal alternative to it – like Blair’s regime – it would have collapsed by now. But those who could do the collapsing – left-wing Tories like Kenneth Clarke, Irish loyalists, even some of Corbyn’s own MPs – are too terrified of the genuinely socialist alternative he offers, to risk rocking the boat. So the bastards survive.
I’m also pretty convinced that it’s this that has triggered, or if not at least sustained, the incredible smears he has been subjected to over the last year – traitor, anti-British, Russian spy, royal-baby-hater, bad dresser, and – the latest and most ludicrous one – tolerant of ‘anti-semitism’ in the party; smears put out and flogged to death by people and their newspapers who are simply, when it comes down to it, terrified of his socialism. It’s the old ‘capitalists versus the people’ thing again. Whoever said the class war was over?
Windrush ought to have sunk May. It’s entirely her responsibility, a direct result of the ungenerosity of spirit that is a key feature of this government, and in particular of her time as Home Secretary in the Coalition, and whose disastrous repercussions she was loudly warned of: by Corbyn, among others. By rights and by parliamentary convention, she should have resigned weeks ago. But no: Corbyn, painted as weak and pathetic a year ago, is now seen as too strong a threat.