After five years of hate, tributes for Jeremy Corbyn on his last day as Labour leader

For those of us who supported his leadership from the moment he declared his candidacy, the praise Jeremy Corbyn has received for his time as Labour Party leader is nothing more than he was due.

He took a floundering political party that had badly lost its way after being hijacked by right-wing neoliberals and steered it back to its socialist roots.

It was exactly the right thing to do, triggering a massive membership boost that made Corbyn’s Labour the largest political organisation in western Europe.

Sadly, elements on the right wing of the party did not accept Labour’s shift back to its roots, and did everything they could to undermine him.

They launched an attempt to unseat him with a no-confidence vote that only led to him consolidating his position as leader with a high majority than before.

They lied that he supported terrorists.

And they plagued him with unfounded claims that he was an anti-Semite and had made the party a safe haven for anti-Semites.

But it was Labour’s loss in the 2019 general election – caused by the party’s support for a vote-losing Brexit policy put forward by Keir Starmer – that led to Mr Corbyn’s resignation as leader.

Starmer went on to stand as a candidate to lead the party, and there are fears that – if he is successful – he’ll drag Labour back to the dark days of neoliberal ‘New Labour’.

One person who understands the hatred that Mr Corbyn had to endure is his wife, Laura Alvarez.

She told the Mirror: “Jeremy’s record in parliament, whether as a backbench MP or as the Leader of the Labour Party, is testament to his belief in a world where, social justice, human rights and peace are valued more greatly than money and greed. As an MP he has always sought to protect the most vulnerable.

“It has been incredibly hard for me to watch my husband vilified and to hear his words twisted by his political opponents and some in the media.

“It has been even harder to watch him be attacked by his own Party.

“The brutal irony is that if we had pulled together, we would have been ready to lead the country rather than suffer more austerity under the Tories.”

That’s true – to the shame of the right-wingers who are trying to pervert Labour once again.

Movie director Ken Loach – who has himself been falsely vilified as an anti-Semite after he declared his support for Mr Corbyn – told iNews: “In 2017, Corbyn and McDonnell came within a whisker of being in government. This would have meant cutting back the power of capital. Far from continued expansion and finding new ways of exploiting working people – public services and utilities, like health, energy, water and transport, would no longer be sources of profit for private companies. And that might be only the beginning. A Labour government could be the threat of a good example.

“Corporate power and its political allies, including the right-wing of the Labour Party, launched a campaign to destroy Jeremy Corbyn and the possibilities he represented. We could see the attacks coming but failed to deal with them.

“Corbyn, a man of peace, was branded a friend of terrorists, a life-long anti-racist he was called an antisemite. He was said to be either too weak or too controlling, too old, wanting a return to the seventies, or an unrealistic dreamer. His supporters were made out to be fanatics by the likes of the Daily Mail. The liberal press and the broadcasters joined in, from a respectful distance of course.

“Labour MPs were allowed to insult and humiliate Corbyn, when there should have been a clear call for open selection of candidates at every election. If the BBC wanted someone to attack Corbyn, no need to ask a Tory, get in a Labour backbencher instead.

“Throughout this, the mainly young supporters stayed loyal, and they saw that Corbyn represented the only viable future for them.

“We see now that the leadership should have been much tougher in dealing with those determined to destroy it. When the history is written, those who led the vilification of Corbyn will rightly be excoriated.”

Mr Corbyn’s senior policy advisor Andrew Fisher, writing in iNews, said the coronavirus is proving his boss’s policies right. He stated: “This crisis is proving policies are more important, and proving Corbyn to have been right on so many of the policies he chose to highlight in his leadership.

“First and foremost, it is clear that Corbyn was right when he said, from his 2015 leadership campaign onwards, “austerity is a political choice, not an economic necessity”. Even before the scale of the coronavirus outbreak had been accepted in 10 Downing Street, the spending taps had been turned on – with new Chancellor Rishi Sunak announcing bundles of cash that his own party had been denouncing when John McDonnell proposed them just three months earlier.

“The coronavirus outbreak has shown that when there is a crisis, money can be found – just as it was to bail out the banks in 2008/09. But the damage done by austerity is plain to see: our NHS went into this crisis after the longest funding squeeze in its history, with 100,000 staff vacancies and with 17,000 fewer beds than in 2010.

“The coronavirus crisis has also made clear that people need stronger rights at work. The loss of trade union representation across so many workplaces is one of the main reasons why so many workers need benefits just to makes ends meet or to pay the rent, while their bosses amass grotesque wealth.

“Many recently laid-off workers are also now confronting the shambles that is our benefits system… when, or rather if, people do get through to make a claim they will be shocked at the poverty rates at which our benefits are paid. The Health Secretary Matt Hancock candidly admitted he could not live on the £94 per week paid through statutory sick pay. Yet those who have lost their jobs will be receiving just £73 per week on Jobseeker’s Allowance. Labour had been campaigning scrap Universal Credit, raise benefit levels, end sanctions, and trial Universal Basic Income.”

Let’s finish with a few comments from people on Twitter:

Last word goes to Mr Corbyn himself:

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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  1. hugosmum70 April 4, 2020 at 12:45 am - Reply

    If Jeremy Corbyn started a new party I’d join it in a heartbeat. Who feels the same?

    • Allan Howard April 4, 2020 at 5:02 am - Reply

      It’s not going to happen, so why bother asking? He has been vilified and smeared and abused practically every day for over four years, and it would all kick off again were he to form a new party – which he is not going to do of course – but you would have him subjected to it all again. Please have some respect for Jeremy and stop playing games with his supporters by asking such an asinine and totally unrealistic question.

    • Aelfy April 4, 2020 at 5:20 am - Reply

      Me, in a flash

  2. timfrom April 4, 2020 at 6:15 am - Reply

    “If Jeremy Corbyn started a new party I’d join it in a heartbeat. Who feels the same?”

    Put me and a few hundred thousand others down for that! And if Starmer wins, who’s up for a bit of membership card destruction? I’ll be cutting up my card and sending it to party HQ. With no stamp! (Gasp)

    Jeremy will be vindicated by history (it’s already started to happen with the enforced leftward drift of the Tories) and his betrayers will hopefully getting a visit from the Karma Police. Who knows, possibly even punished. There’ll be a lot of people after their blood and “anger is an energy” (Lydon)…

  3. Country Girl April 4, 2020 at 6:24 am - Reply

    I do. I’d join.

  4. kateuk April 4, 2020 at 10:31 am - Reply

    So many people talking about starting a new party, it will go the way of all the other “new” parties and be forgotten in an instant. Our rotten and corrupt electoral system favours the two party system so we have to try to get the Tories out and get electoral reform. That won’t happen if the left split themselves.

  5. James April 4, 2020 at 1:53 pm - Reply

    Agreed with every word, Mike. So far as I can tell, Corbyn’s one failing – and it should NOT be a failing, but unfortunately seems to be in practice, at least in politics and business – is that he’s TOO decent and TOO honourable. (An aside: how ANYONE can seriously apply the word honourable, as in ‘the Honourable Member for *****’ to a very large proportion of MPs is beyond me. As for ‘Right Honourable’ applied to the current crop of Tory cabinet ministers – well, words fail me!) Actually, one more failing, though it pales into insignificance by comparison with the craven attitude of the current crop of leadership contenders (very much including the anointed Starmer) is the genefluction in the direction of Netenyahu’s Israel and the Zionist faction among right wing Jews who peddle the fiction that they are representative of Jews in general. There is an aphorism that says the best form of defence is attack, and – without intending to sound militaristic – attack is what should have been undertaken long and loud against the farrago spouted by such as the ‘Chief’ Rabbi AND a number of treacherous ‘Labour’ MPs. What looks likely to be Starmer’s resurrected ‘New Labour’ is not a headline that gets my support.

  6. Growing Flame April 4, 2020 at 9:15 pm - Reply

    How about I float an idea that I hardly believe myself ? But here goes…..

    Starmer cannot be the next Blair(even if some wished it) because the situation is different.
    When Blair became leader, the Labour Party had already been drifting Rightwards for a while out of sheer desperation at always losing to the Tories even when Tory rule had , effectively, destroyed much of UK industrial production. The only idea around the Party was to become more “SDP like” and to ditch past commitments to real change. So Blair was part of a whole-Party movement. (I left at this point in our history, but I digress).
    Anyway, Starmer is taking over at a point when the Party is the biggest Party in Western Europe and has regained the policies that might ,now, make it possible to claim the mantle of socialism. And our radical (“Corbynite” ?)policies are POPULAR with most Party members).

    We have seen ,in 2015, that radical , socialist policies can succeed ,and can succeed again.

    Starmer would have a real battle on his hands to undo any of that, especially as the new policies are most supported by the most active members.
    By contrast, Blair led a Party devoid of ideas except the new mantra of the “Third Way” and “New Labour”. There was no alternative,literally.. Blair and the Party were , more or less, on the same page.

    Today is quite different. Today, the Party extols radical new policies that are actually popular with the voters, a fact we should never forget. Back in Blair’s day, Thatcherism (without Thatcher) still reigned supreme.

    Blair could ditch Labour’s radical history because the rest of the members had lost faith in anything actually winning.

    We are not that Party any more.

    No doubt , we are faced with a grim period of fighting on two fronts. Against the Tories. But also against the rightward drift already being planned for our Party. But we have most Party members behind our policies . and most voters, too.

    I will be sticking around, for now. It may be worth the effort.

  7. Rik April 5, 2020 at 12:38 am - Reply

    I am so sad that Jeremy Corbyne is now not the leader of the Labour Party
    ..Now we have Keir Starmer as the Leader Gawd help us all. . .

    Anyways I’m gonna put another donation to Mike’s fund & I hope whoever is reading thid will follow me as she needs to held to account..

    I’m not a rich person (lol) but this
    has to br done . . I’m gonna bung in £20 and I hope you will all follow me & bung in whatever you can..
    Many Thanks

    A normal person

    • Mike Sivier April 5, 2020 at 1:25 am - Reply

      Thanks Rik.

  8. Rik April 5, 2020 at 12:45 am - Reply

    Would you believe it.. Halifax online is down at the moment so I’ll have another go tomorrow (today actuslly)

    Be good & be safe everyone . .

  9. Rik April 5, 2020 at 1:55 am - Reply

    Ok my bank has cone back online
    Ive pledged £20 I know this seems like a lot of money to some people (which it is)
    but we need to teach these vermin that we mean business…
    So please everyone pledgevas much as you can
    & rid this world of horidvevil people like this . . .

    a mike you don’t have to publish these comments I’ll understand

    I am usually up until early hours of the morning
    usually til 5am 6am 7am & you’re beavering away I don’t think a lot if your followers know this tbh. . . I know because I have a sleep disorder and follow you 24/7

    Good work Mike

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