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Why they keep going on about Corbyn and 'leadership'?

Note: This  blog comes from Michael Rosen, Children's author and poet and, former Children's Laureate. The original article can be found at http://michaelrosenblog.blogspot.co.uk/2016/07/why-they-keep-going-on-about-corbyn-and.html?spref=tw

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Many months now of mainstream media people, Blair's warlords, several sundry ex-leading members of the Labour Party who voted for the Iraq War, PFI and who failed to nationalise the railways or build council houses all saying that Corbyn is not a leader.

Several possible interpretations of this:

  1. Corbyn represents a permanent and irritating criticism of what they've all been saying and doing for the last 10 years.

  2. They all work to some kind of cardboard cut-out template of 'The Leader' - the kind of thing you used to be able to buy from Woolworth's when I was a kid. The problem for them is that Corbyn doesn't fit the template. In fact, the template comes from a weird mutual chit-chat between right wing politicians and the media. The media give marks (quite literally in the case of the Guardian) for 'good performances' by leaders while political parties do what they can to mould their leaders to fit what the media give good marks for.
    Cameron was rude, clichéd, snobbish, racist (remember the 'bunch of migrants' and the sneer at 'Indian dancing' and the support for Goldsmith's islamophobia  in the London mayoral election?) but of course, with the help of speech-writers, had a glib turn of phrase - all this while he and his government have been taking money away from low income people to pay for the recession and bank crisis. As Corbyn doesn't fit the template, then he can't be 'The Leader', they say.

  3. Another possibility is that whatever Corbyn is, says or does, if they hope that if they keep on saying 'Corbyn's not a leader' enough people will believe them. This is part of a very old idea: if I say something, it'll happen. Or something else: people will believe that being the template 'Leader' is what we need to make our lives better. Do we? Do we need glib, smooth-talking, fibbing people like Blair or Cameron?

  4. I'm dead keen that there should be a good team of people, popular in their party, popular in the country, good at helping each other, good at explaining things, good at pointing out how the system as a whole is rigged to enable the rich to defend their wealth, create yet more wealth at the expense of the non-wealthy and the poor.
    At present, 172 Labour MPs, ex-Blairite warlords and sundry miffed New Labourites are doing everything they can to prevent this team emerging and strengthening itself.  They fear that such a team will emerge and are trying to crush it.

    I don't find myself yearning for someone like Blair or Cameron to 'lead'. Far from it.



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commented 2016-07-22 12:58:29 +0100
I wish I had the luxury of financial security and the job of being a poet allowing me the time to attack people who really are making a difference. As a hard pressed public sector worker I cannot subscribe to Rosen’s views – particularly when the school library cannot afford to by his books!
commented 2016-07-19 22:59:09 +0100
They go on about leadership but so far have offered no obvious Corbyn alternative; Smith and Eagle are utterly unconvincing as potential leaders. Eagle has gone now and left us with the worst option!

Basically it’s just a feeble excuse to dump Corbyn as part of a struggle for power by the right of the party.

It’s some time to the vote so in the meantime we can expect dirty tricks by the dozen. There will be “dead cat on the table” tactics as the time approaches and a continuous systematic effort to discredit Corbyn. This is the only tactics they have as they don’t have any sort of positive alternative agenda. They don’t have raison d’etre or even much reason for staying in the party!

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