Sir Keith’s Funda-Centralist Martyrdom Op Flop
By James Tweedie
In this article, Lexiteer, communist and former International Editor of the Morning Star takes a jaundiced view of the Labour Party in opposition lead by Britain’s former top lawyer, Keir Starmer.
In religious fundamentalist parlance, a suicide mission is called a ‘martyrdom operation’ – promising the hapless volunteer low-grade sainthood in return for their ultimate self-sacrifice.But the chimeric modern ‘Left’ revels in its own martyrdom ops, choosing lonely political hills to die on — like opposition to Brexit — and obscure crosses to be nailed to — like the mess made by the European Medicines Agency of COVID-19 vaccinations.
Starmer cunningly combines smarmy yet stultifying lawyering — amid the school-yard rough-and-tumble of Parliament — with a set of noble-sounding extreme centralist principles that no voters actually support, and an ever-expanding list of instantly-forgettable slogans.
A recent poll found that Labour voters overwhelmingly want Starmer to go before the next election, but most have no idea who will replace him.
Since, incredibly, losing Hartlepool to the Tories, Starmer has been engaged in a balletic act of shadow-boxing against a leadership challenger who doesn’t exist. A recent poll found that Labour voters overwhelmingly want Starmer to go before the next election, but most have no idea who will replace him. In other words, they’re so keen to be rid of him hat they don’t care that there’s no obvious successor.
It’s no use pointing to Andy Burnham, the runner-up in the poll after ‘Don’t Know’, or Sadiq Khan. Neither of them can be Labour leader because neither of them is an MP. It could take both of them until the next general election to engineer a return to Parliament. In any case, neither is a match for the double-jabbed, triple-wed BoJo Mojo.
It’s no use pointing to Andy Burnham, the runner-up in the poll after ‘Don’t Know’, or Sadiq Khan. Neither of them can be Labour leader because neither of them is an MP.
Meanwhile, calls for a ‘Grand Progressive Alliance’ of not-the-Tories parties are becoming increasingly strident in the Guardian-reading dining rooms of Hampstead and Islington. But such a Labour/Liberal Democrat/Green hybrid — the ‘Lab-Deens’ if you like — would be a losers’ coalition.
The Lib Dems’ pound of flesh for entering into that marriage made in hell would be a neo-liberal economic policy and a commitment to reverse Brexit and rejoin the European Union. The Greens, also bitter Remoaners, would demand job-massacring environmentalist policies.
The Lib Dem vote might look on paper as though it could tip the balance in an election, but in fact it is concentrated in those few areas of the country where the ancient Whig party still wins seats: Lancashire and Cumbria, Parts of Scotland, Bristol and south-west London.
Meanwhile the Scottish National Party and Plaid Cymru would scoop up even more of the disillusioned core Labour vote, while the Tories would continue to enjoy the support of most of those who actually work for a living.
Labour’s rot runs deep, right to the core. It has been systematically turning its back on the working class for more than 20-years
In fact it is Labour’s failure to stop the extremely right wing SNP and the discordant choir of Plaid from blatantly stealing its clothes since 1997 that has created the current situation: where the Tories have gone from having no MPs north of the border to now being the second-biggest parties in both devolved regions of Britain.
Labour can’t win a general election without the 45 Scottish Commons seats now squatted on by the SNP. But neither can it afford to appeal to nationalists, because ‘independence’ for Scotland and/or Wales would similarly guarantee a Tory majority for decades.
Labour’s rot runs deep, right to the core. It has been systematically turning its back on the working class for more than 20-years — actually, since it backed the human slaughterhouse of the First World War in 1914 — and the working class has finally turn its back on Labour.
The party is increasingly retreating into its last strongholds in the inner districts of maybe a dozen cities. It is turning away from what meagre class politics it ever had, to identity politics as it desperately panders to its last voter bases: metropolitan middle-class liberals, the chronically-unemployed and ethnic minorities. Even there the Tories are making inroads into the Asian vote, with three of the top cabinet jobs held by Afro-Indians.
Another Hartlepool-style upset for Labour in the July 1 Batley and Spen by-election could be the nail in Starmer’s coffin — and his lifetime meal ticket as a Law Lord. But will whoever draws the short straw of leadership the from the increasingly-hopeless pool of Labour MPs be able to turn the doomed ship around?
James Tweedie was born in Hammersmith, West London, in 1975. He grew up in the shadow of the mushroom cloud in the time of colonial liberation, being taken to Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and Anti-Apartheid Movement events by his mother and father respectfully.
James has lived and worked in South Africa and Spain. He has worked as a reporter and the international editor of the Morning Star newspaper, a foreign reporter for the Mail Online, an online journalist for RT.com. He has appeared as a commentator on BBC Radio 4, RT’s Crosstalk, Turkey’s TRT World and Iran’s Press TV. He currently works for Sputnik.
James maintains an occasional blog (http://ositorojo.blogspot.com/), describing himself as “one of the most deplorable purveyors of fake news about populist strongmen (and women) around the post-truth world.”