I bet you find this tweet as amusing as I did:
It is ironic, isn’t it? David Miliband, the darling of the Labour Right, regularly threatened to return to frontline politics and challenge Jeremy Corbyn during the latter’s leadership of the party.
Right-wingers in the party made successive attempts to wreck the Corbyn project through all five years of his leadership. I’ve managed to dig out a report of Mr Miliband making one such attack, from February 2017, months before Corbyn nearly won the 2017 general election (and we’ve all seen the evidence that it was sabotaged by Labour right-wingers by now). Consider:
Labour loses an extremely marginal seat and the right-whingers pull out David Miliband to criticise the leadership. It’s all so predictable.
… As was his message: A lie, based on apparent facts.
So he reckons Labour is further from power than at any time in the last 50 years. This may be accurate.
He reckons Labour’s situation isn’t a repeat of the 1980s. This may also be accurate.
But his conclusion – that Labour needs to become a right-wing party again, because he thinks socialism won’t address the problems the UK faces or get Labour elected, because he thinks watered-down Tory policies are what the public wants – is completely whacko-jacko.
Liam Young had it right, as This Site reported yesterday: Timidly copying Tory policies – failing to challenge them – is what has caused Labour’s problems. The party should be taking risks, pushing boundaries, and pushing radical ideas.
Labour’s decline in support isn’t because it has rejected right-wing policies; it is because New Labour ignored the working-class voters who have always been the party’s power-base – to such a degree that five million of them turned their backs on the party. Jeremy Corbyn has managed to bring some of them back but that process is being sabotaged by right-wing Labour MPs and commentators like Mr Miliband.
And those right-wingers need to be addressed – quickly. They cannot be allowed to continue backstabbing Mr Corbyn and Labour’s current direction.
It is clear that they want Labour to lose elections – why do you think Tristram Hunt and Jamie Reed resigned? They wanted Corbyn to lose both Copeland and Stoke Central – and are quite happy to allow homicidal Conservative policies to continue.
After all, they aren’t suffering; they’ll get another huge pay rise in April.
And Clive Lewis was right when he said that Labour needs to tackle a lot of vested interests, including those in the media who are desperate to keep Labour out of office…
And people like David Miliband, who say they are Labour but aren’t really Labour at all.
I’m quite proud of that article, looking back. It was prescient, pointing out that the right-wingers wanted Labour to lose elections and needed to be rooted out before they did serious damage to the party’s chance of winning elections.
My words were ignored. Factionalists in the party were accusing me of anti-Semitism at the time (as, indeed, they continue to do).
And now Miliband – hypocrite that he is – is back, accusing Corbyn of exactly the behaviour of which he was guilty back in 2017.
Miliband’s words themselves were, of course, utterly ridiculous. His claims about Labour’s losses in 2017 and 2019 ignore the facts we know – that he and his fellow right-wingers had been working hard to hold Corbyn back in both polls, and deny the claims that are being tested now.
What’s he going to do if those claims are proved true? His faction has never been quick to admit being wrong.
No doubt there are die-hards among the Labour right who are delighted with this intervention.
But the rational opinion is that he has made a fool of himself and everybody in his faction.
And some are not as polite:
Do one, Loser!!! pic.twitter.com/cpYXfhJ1bT
— The Agitator (@UKDemockery) August 10, 2020
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