Saturday, 2 July 2016

Back Corbyn!

In the wake of the secret vote of no confidence by MPs, organised in haste against Jeremy Corbyn, he has shown tremendous character in withstanding the pressure and also frankly bullying behaviour of a number of MPs in the Westminster bubble (with the honourable exception of the 40 or so MPs who have resisted this including those that have stepped up to the plate and become shadow cabinet members – the true heros and heroines of the movement).

With the biggest political crisis in Britain since the Second World War unfolding, it would have been hoped most Labour MPs would be reassuring party members, supporters and the wider community about their intention to resist fresh austerity from the Brexit Tories and also their intention to oppose increased racism in the wake of the EU leave vote. Instead we have seen undemocratic plotting. Cameron, Murdoch and the political establishment are joining in with the disloyal MPs calling on Corbyn to resign.

Is this about electability? Does anyone seriously believe a right wing candidate who supported the Iraq war, voted against the enquiry into it (The Chilcot report will be revealed next week – so the timing of the coup is interesting), supports bombing Syria and abstains on cuts to welfare votes will appeal. The same goes for the EU referendum where Corbyn's position was closer to a lot of the unions - stay in but the EU needs reform (an honest position).  
On the bullying issue many of us who are union reps will know this can be a serious issue in workplaces. It is therefore with dismay we observe the behaviour of some in the Parliamentary Labour Party who should know better (one would hope) and ought to appreciate they should be setting a better example to society at large.
What the establishment fear is a weakened Tory party still fighting over Europe with a small base in wider society up against a mass membership Labour Party of up to half a million members (if the current rate of growth continues) and led by socialists who will oppose scapegoating of refugees and migrants and oppose austerity and war. In the battles ahead against austerity are we better off with Corbyn as leader or a Blairite or soft left leader susceptible to Blairite pressure – I know which I prefer and the rallies and support now taking place for Jeremy Corbyn across the country now show that is understood by millions of working class people. Thus the whole of the Trade Union and labour movement must rally to defend Corbyn thus offering a way forward in the crisis.  
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