If This Writer was in Jeremy Corbyn’s position, I’d string these Labour ‘peace talks’ along just as far as I could, while I used the time to improve my position, or at least secure the continuation of my policies.
For me, that would involve securing the election of the ‘Left List’ to Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee, securing a new rule for the introduction of mandatory deselection/reselection procedures for MPs, and seeing how many constituency parties pass a vote of ‘no confidence’ in their mutinous MPs.
It is clear, just from this Guardian article, that the Labour mutineers are still trying to stab Mr Corbyn in the back; his responsibility is to ensure that they don’t.
You can find a key indicator of the mutineers’ thinking right here:
The placing of limits on the power of Corbyn’s close ally John McDonnell to interfere in other shadow ministers’ policy areas is likely to be one element of any deal. “You would have to McDonnell-proof a future shadow cabinet,” one shadow minister said.
This Blog reported a few days ago that former Shadow Health Secretary Heidi Alexander had kicked up a fuss, claiming that Mr McDonnell had interfered in her policy area.
His spokesperson had revealed that this was because NHS campaigners had complained that she was not doing enough to support junior doctors and protect the National Health Service – in effect, sabotaging Labour’s health policy.
He did set up a group of NHS policy advisors, but it never met because Ms Alexander quit before it could. It has since been disbanded – and act that speaks volumes about its purpose.
The fact that the mutineers want to prevent any similar situations in future also speaks volumes about their purpose; they want to make sure Mr Corbyn and his supporters can’t scupper any further attempts to sabotage the party.
For that alone, these treacherous creatures should be kicked out of the party and told never to come back.
But Mr Corbyn is more conciliatory than This Writer, it seems – as demonstrated by his plea for unity on Saturday (July 2).
There are other causes for concern:
Labour MPs say [Corbyn’s] position is untenable without the support of the parliamentary party, and they would be unlikely to join any talks without the prospect of Corbyn handing over to another leader before the next general election.
Maybe his position is untenable without the support of the Parliamentary party – but they can quit – as Labour MPs or as MPs altogether – any time they like. Sure, it’ll weaken Labour for a while – until the next general election if they decide to sit as independents or cross the floor to another party; otherwise only until by-elections have taken place – but then their constituency parties will be able to replace them and an intake of new, Labour MPs will come into the Commons, most probably without the neoliberal pretensions of the current turncoats.
Suggestions that Clive Lewis might replace Mr Corbyn are, of course, frivolous as he is not nearly well-enough known by the public in general and would become prey to neoliberal usurpers pretty sharpish.
So it seems to me the best thing Mr Corbyn can do is play the game. It will give him time to boost his resources, and insight into his enemies’ plans.
But there can be no trust. These are people who have tried to shame and bully him, who have ignored democracy, tried to sabotage his policies and plotted against him, behind his back, for months. They deserve nothing.
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