A guest slot from Egg
The fuel to ignite the bitterness of the imminent Labour war is fact you cannot have remainers in the Labour Party now. How can you if the word has no meaning anymore, remainery has ceased to be, if the party ever wins again they will inherit a nation (or whats left of it) outside the EU.
So it needs a compromise, does it not?
Whether voting for one or betting on the outcome, I suggest you must put the labour leadership candidates under two headings. Without wearing my own prejudice too critically on my sleeve, you can put the snivelling, cowardly, surrender monkeys under the heading Collins, you can put the true labour patriots of unsullied Labour soul, those who won’t swear allegiance to a Boris Brexit, under the heading de Valera. The de Valera will have their own unique chant “no surrender, no surrender, no surrender to the E.R.G.” Whilst those under the Collins heading will talk up realities of a Brexit that will be inherited, how though not perfect it offers opportunity to achieve greater freedom for workers, environmental rights and for all voters particularly on Tampon Taxation, this describes the true differential, all under Collins heading won’t be prepared to call the voters stupid in order to try and win them back, they will say the manifesto and labour leadership got it wrong, not the voters.
Did the voters get it wrong? Are voters stupid?
Pick up any newspaper and politics is very black and white isn’t it? Often the black and white view and simple slogans cut through: you don’t want terrorists and dangerous criminals on your streets, lock them up and don’t let them out.
But now is the moment for all Labour Party members to remember why they are the left: it is to argue the progressive argument against reactionary solutions the right instinctively reach for. And the question defining this political age: despite unreconstructed Bennites in key positions, as we went in to 2019 election vast majority of the labour movement believed Brexit is wrong, Brexit will make our country progressively poorer, the idea Brexit can be done and dusted in January let alone 2020 a lie, and there is no such thing as in or out anyway that idea is a cummings con, we are in a trade agreement and merely swapping one trade deal for another, and labours Brexit policy was (and yes I can nail it in one simple sentence) to accept the negotiation on the new trading deal with the world’s largest trading bloc, second largest economy right on our doorstep without scrutinizing the crucial detail of that negotiation and accepting or rejecting in a further referendum is just plain stupid. This was Labours Brexit position. Vote to get brexit done without a confirmatory ref on the new deal and you are just plain stupid.
Labour should stick to this position. Because we don’t live in a black and white world. Realities in this world are much more grey. Whilst voters will vote for a personality for PM or against a personality for PM, they will always reject a manifesto in the process (Lloyd Georgie’s manifestos in the twenties were fantastic for the time, alas DLG had a low share price); what actually is the progressive answer in the long run may be much harder sell in the short term. It does disservice to democracy (where voter support is currency) political parties follow the money and avoid a stand on principle. A manifesto decides what is right for the next 5 or 10 years, you cannot maintain credibility if you simply junk your principled positions, be it opposition to tuition fee’s, how you voted to initiate war, how you campaigned for a Poll Tax or Dementia tax or whatever.
So the coming Labour split whether to accept or oppose Boris Brexit will be deeply personal, it will split factions, split close friends and comrades, for this reason this labour contest will leave lasting bitterness and consequence in Labour politics for a long time to come.
How do I know I am right? Easy, it is already happening. After the exit poll before the results were in, leavers on this blog were saying now is time for the country to come together. 80 seat majority clear mandate to get Brexit done, Brexit civil war won, lay down arms, bow down to the orthodoxy, stop declaring it heresy and rocking the boat. Any idea how patronising this sounds?
In a true democracy a majority has no right to do wrong. Sure, many on the remain side from all the parties will crack under this pressure, believing it is their patriotic duty to lay down arms now remain has lost.
Well you crack if you want to, this Eggs not for cracking.