Keir Starmer Labour Leader

Sweet Square

Full Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2013
Messages
15,240
Location
The Zone
i think he’s Labours version of Theresa May. Just a really awkward, uncharismatic leader.
Agree.

Out of interest if he stepped down who would you have replace him? (You can’t choose Corbyn:))
Have no idea. The left last campaign with RLB was complete dog shit and there isn't anyone who really stands out atm. The reasons I liked Corbyn leadership where foreign policy relate and no one in the labour party comes close to him on this. Also the failure of getting any reforms in the Labour Party and very standard social democracy getting destroyed has got me feeling pretty bleak about any electoral politics.

I guess I would maybe support any candidate that is interested in promoting some level of party democracy or even someone who's thinking about the structural issues in UK politics. I'm not a fan of Clive Lewis but at least his plan of labour running on electoral reform makes some sense. Also while I'm not a massive fan of this type of politics, it's pretty dreadful that Labour have yet to have someone who isn't a white guy as leader.


Yeah, if there's a silver lining of the current Labour disaster it's that at least it's shown that this mythical 'electable' centrist strategy just doesn't work in 2021.
Although 1) The left can't win and 2)We've known this for the best part of a decade and it doesn't make a difference to a lot of people.

I could be entirely wrong though, probably am. It's all a bit crap at the moment and I don't envisage it getting any better for the next five to ten years.
“Pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will''.
 

Lebowski

Full Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2010
Messages
557
Location
Collyhurst
I agree Starmer isn’t doing a great job at the moment, and I’d ultimately settle for him doing for labour what kinnock did, bridesmaid if not the bride. That said, this election proves nothing about the current strategy.As someone said, labour was up against a war time type government, an economy about to boom, a very successful vaccination programme, house prices on fire and no real way to cut thru the against,COVID etc. Nobody could win against that. Circumstances favoured incumbents and that’s what we saw across the country.Admittedly labour does have a huge problem with changing demographics, but if there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s the electorate also hated Corbynism. so there’s no answer there.
I think the results in Hartlepool and the rest of 'Super Thursday' tells us loads about the current strategy, namely that it isn't working.

I get that it's an unusual political landscape due to COVID, but I think laying out the factors you did as why it was always going to be an impossible task is way too reductive.

Taking each of your explanations for Labour's failure in turn...

War time government
Starmer let the Tories get away with one of the worst COVID death tolls and worst economic impacts in the world because of his obsession with focus group data suggesting voters don't want a leader to 'play politics' with the pandemic. Meaning none of the death and misery caused by government decisions stuck. He also didn't present any coherent vision for the country post-pandemic. Different circumstances but Atlee beat national hero Winston Churchill in the aftermath of WW2 by telling the British public that whilst Churchill won the war, Labour were best placed to win the peace.

'An economy about to boom'
Britain's economy was damaged more than any other G7 nation and whilst GDP will rebound slightly this year, it's just not true to say the economy is about to boom. We'll be looking at record unemployment, unprecedented SME insolvency and some industries perhaps never returning. I don't think you could imagine a better time to present a more equal, local, new economic system to the electorate than now.

A very successful vaccination programme
Administered by the NHS, unlike the disastrous test and trace plan administered by the private sector. Vote for the party who wants to protect the NHS, not the party trying to sell it off and award health contracts to their incompetent wealthy pals. I mean this stuff basically writes itself!

House prices on fire
Britain has relatively low homeownership so this is irrelevant / a negative thing for a decent chunk of the population, but even for homeowners I don't think the housing bubble is something that is attributed to the Tory government.

Regarding Corbyn and electoral success... Corbynism led us to a terrible election result in 2019 but Corbyn still won this seat twice during his leadership. As much as Brexit is being used as an excuse this time (the Brexit Party vote going to the Tories) his offering managed to turn a larger UKIP vote percent in 2015 back to Labour in 2017 and win with over 50% of the vote.

Your Kinnock comment is interesting unless I am misinterpreting it- you'd settle for Starmer achieving what Kinnock did - a divided party and electoral failure as a price paid to wage a factional battle against the left. If you that's what you hope Starmer does, then why even bother making excuses for the election defeat?
 
Last edited:

Lebowski

Full Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2010
Messages
557
Location
Collyhurst
Although 1) The left can't win and 2)We've known this for the best part of a decade and it doesn't make a difference to a lot of people.


“Pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will''.
The left probably can't win in our current economic and political climate, I agree. A left victory would rely on the people disengaged and essentially disenfranchised from our current system being energised enough to participate in electoral politics, and as Corbyn and Sanders showed, the forces are aligned against that happening.

I believe whether it's through climate change or the continued inequality and decline of economic conditions during late stage capitalism, there will be a tipping point in the not too distant future where the anger at impotent politicians and the demand for a radical rethink will become too great to ignore. Whether that will take the form of a green socialist agenda or a far right retreat into the bosom of the nation state remains to be seen.

You ended your post with a Gramsci quote so I assume I'm not telling you anything you don't already know though:D
 

Fluctuation0161

Full Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2016
Messages
4,575
Location
Manchester
I believe whether it's through climate change or the continued inequality and decline of economic conditions during late stage capitalism, there will be a tipping point in the not too distant future where the anger at impotent politicians and the demand for a radical rethink will become too great to ignore. Whether that will take the form of a green socialist agenda or a far right retreat into the bosom of the nation state remains to be seen.
I think we are already sliding further towards the far right. Fuelled by the media and evolved Cambridge Analytica digital marketing this is sadly the most likely outcome.
 

Sweet Square

Full Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2013
Messages
15,240
Location
The Zone
I believe whether it's through climate change or the continued inequality and decline of economic conditions during late stage capitalism, there will be a tipping point in the not too distant future where the anger at impotent politicians and the demand for a radical rethink will become too great to ignore. Whether that will take the form of a green socialist agenda or a far right retreat into the bosom of the nation state remains to be seen.
Agree it's hard not to think that things will simply have to get fall part more and for the contradictions to appear more clear for real radical change.

You ended your post with a Gramsci quote so I assume I'm not telling you anything you don't already know though:D
That little Italian fella was onto something.
 

F-Red

Full Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2008
Messages
8,907
Location
Cheshire
Interesting thread

To draw the right conclusion on that chart is the demographics of those who voted for Brexit, as this was the main thread of the 2019 GE and probably the key topic for the retired vote.
 

Raven

Full Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2012
Messages
4,275
Location
Ireland
I agree Starmer isn’t doing a great job at the moment, and I’d ultimately settle for him doing for labour what kinnock did, bridesmaid if not the bride. That said, this election proves nothing about the current strategy.As someone said, labour was up against a war time type government, an economy about to boom, a very successful vaccination programme, house prices on fire and no real way to cut thru the against,COVID etc. Nobody could win against that. Circumstances favoured incumbents and that’s what we saw across the country.Admittedly labour does have a huge problem with changing demographics, but if there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s the electorate also hated Corbynism. so there’s no answer there.
Why do you even support Labour? Why don't you just join the Tories or the lib dems, you're clearly not in any way left wing so why be a part of an inherently left wing movement?
 

Boycott

Full Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2013
Messages
5,901
Interesting thread

"Labour has lost the working classes" is a statement that is about culture not economics. It's not about economic class anymore.

Somebody who grew up in a council estate with a single mother in a low-income area and studied hard to get excellent school grades, go to a top ranked university, graduate and get a city job suddenly goes from being working class to now part of a "metropolitan elite". That person has no more privileged roots than somebody in the same area who did an apprenticeship in construction but culturally one is now considered forever working class while the other is no longer working class. Even if the construction worker can in fact get more income and without the student debt to pay off than the university graduate.
 

Buster15

Go on Didier
Joined
Aug 28, 2018
Messages
6,701
Location
Bristol
Supports
Bristol Rovers
"Labour has lost the working classes" is a statement that is about culture not economics. It's not about economic class anymore.

Somebody who grew up in a council estate with a single mother in a low-income area and studied hard to get excellent school grades, go to a top ranked university, graduate and get a city job suddenly goes from being working class to now part of a "metropolitan elite". That person has no more privileged roots than somebody in the same area who did an apprenticeship in construction but culturally one is now considered forever working class while the other is no longer working class. Even if the construction worker can in fact get more income and without the student debt to pay off than the university graduate.
As I have mentioned, it has become 'trendy' to support Boris and vote Tory. Whatever some may think of him, he is popular.
Anyway, who really are the working class anymore. We have lost millions of what were heavy industry manual jobs like shipbuilding and coal mining.
And most of these have been replaced by service sector type jobs where you don't get your hands dirty.
My very simple definition of working class are anyone who has to work for a living.
But the truth is that fewer people actually class themselves that anymore.
And that is precisely why so called left wing policies are failing to be vote winning.
As I see it, the Tories have moved further to the right.
New Labour were so successful because they understood that the majority of the votes are in the centre. Not to the left. And the last two elections show that to be true.
 

sun_tzu

The Art of Bore
Joined
Aug 23, 2010
Messages
17,040
Location
Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance.
As I have mentioned, it has become 'trendy' to support Boris and vote Tory. Whatever some may think of him, he is popular.
Anyway, who really are the working class anymore. We have lost millions of what were heavy industry manual jobs like shipbuilding and coal mining.
And most of these have been replaced by service sector type jobs where you don't get your hands dirty.
My very simple definition of working class are anyone who has to work for a living.
But the truth is that fewer people actually class themselves that anymore.
And that is precisely why so called left wing policies are failing to be vote winning.
As I see it, the Tories have moved further to the right.
New Labour were so successful because they understood that the majority of the votes are in the centre. Not to the left. And the last two elections show that to be true.
I think the only people really concerned with the "working Class" "traditional working class" and to a large extent the "traditional left / right politics" are the left of labour... sooner they get their hipster head out of das kapital and telling people they shouldnt be voting tory (again the only pople who use that term) they can actually start to engage with the reality which is as you say the majority of votes are in the centre and labour need those votes

Though i suspect they are more concerned with go funding Corbyns libel trials and making starmer memes
 
Last edited:

Fluctuation0161

Full Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2016
Messages
4,575
Location
Manchester
I think the only people really concerned with the "working Class" "traditional working class" and to a large extent the "traditional left / right politics" are the left of labour... sooner they get their hipster head out of das kapital and telling people they shouldnt be voting tory (again the only pople who use that term) they can actually start to engage with the reality which is as you say the majority of votes are in the centre and labour need those votes

Though i suspect they are more concerned with go funding Corbyns libel trials and making starmer memes
Define "centre" politics. Is it Starmer, trying to say what people want to hear, but having no real opinions or policies himself?

Or have we drifted so far to the right that centre now, in 2021, is what Cameron was in 2010 which led us down the dark path of austerity and Brexit divisions?
 

sullydnl

Ross Kemp's caf ID
Joined
Sep 13, 2012
Messages
24,697
What particularly woke things has Starmer actually done to be criticised for being in thrall to the woke left? The most high-profile issue of that ilk I can recall since he's been in charge is the statue-toppling, which he said (and then was criticised for saying) is wrong.

Or is this just a general accusation of wokism (which probably isn't a word) that would be applied to pretty much anyone leading the Labour party?
 

Boycott

Full Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2013
Messages
5,901
As I have mentioned, it has become 'trendy' to support Boris and vote Tory. Whatever some may think of him, he is popular.
Anyway, who really are the working class anymore. We have lost millions of what were heavy industry manual jobs like shipbuilding and coal mining.
And most of these have been replaced by service sector type jobs where you don't get your hands dirty.
My very simple definition of working class are anyone who has to work for a living.
But the truth is that fewer people actually class themselves that anymore.
And that is precisely why so called left wing policies are failing to be vote winning.
As I see it, the Tories have moved further to the right.
New Labour were so successful because they understood that the majority of the votes are in the centre. Not to the left. And the last two elections show that to be true.
That's true and I put that down to his bumbling chappy image has curated over his political career. His journalism career was not shy of digs and contempt at the very people who now like him. I don't think it's that he's very humorous because David Cameron had much better wit and zingers but not as popular as Johnson. Maybe because there isn't any big personalities on Labour it makes Johnson appear more relatable. It's all superficial as his policies do little to help.

As for who is working class anymore another reason why it is such a redundant term now is both the populist wings of the parties when they talk about it mainly talk about the white working class without implicitly saying so. Because they define it in nostalgic rhetoric. There is nostalgia for different reasons where the populist left look back on the industrial workers (the miners, the shipmakers, the factory workers) and union solidarity who were at the heart of Labour in the 20th century and the populist right look at a time of far less immigration and multiculturalism.

The populist right is having more success because fearmongering about immigrants is something that has always existed whereas the old industrial coalition of the populist left is dead. The men (and it was overwhelmingly men) have died out and so have those jobs. It's been 30 years since Thatcher. That said the populist right's anti-immigration message is not penetrating the low income earners but rather an older population who have savings, pensions and stable economic conditions so vote on maintaining their status.
 

sullydnl

Ross Kemp's caf ID
Joined
Sep 13, 2012
Messages
24,697
That's true and I put that down to his bumbling chappy image has curated over his political career. His journalism career was not shy of digs and contempt at the very people who now like him. I don't think it's that he's very humorous because David Cameron had much better wit and zingers but not as popular as Johnson. Maybe because there isn't any big personalities on Labour it makes Johnson appear more relatable. It's all superficial as his policies do little to help.

As for who is working class anymore another reason why it is such a redundant term now is both the populist wings of the parties when they talk about it mainly talk about the white working class without implicitly saying so. Because they define it in nostalgic rhetoric. There is nostalgia for different reasons where the populist left look back on the industrial workers (the miners, the shipmakers, the factory workers) and union solidarity who were at the heart of Labour in the 20th century and the populist right look at a time of far less immigration and multiculturalism.

The populist right is having more success because fearmongering about immigrants is something that has always existed whereas the old industrial coalition of the populist left is dead. The men (and it was overwhelmingly men) have died out and so have those jobs. It's been 30 years since Thatcher. That said the populist right's anti-immigration message is not penetrating the low income earners but rather an older population who have savings, pensions and stable economic conditions so vote on maintaining their status.
What happens when that older generation die off, I wonder? I wouldn't have thought subsequent generations would be on quite the same economic footing as they age.
 

Boycott

Full Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2013
Messages
5,901
What happens when that older generation die off, I wonder? I wouldn't have thought subsequent generations would be on quite the same economic footing as they age.
People are living longer so it could be a long while yet until they become irrelevant. The younger generation appear way more politically aware but voter turn out has still not manifested much better. I think I'm right in saying the much hyped "youthquake" leading into the 2019 election only ended up with a lower youth turn out than the previous election.

There is this saying the older you get the more conservative you become. I'm not aware of an extensive statistical study done on this but I recall one looking at the hippy era which was perhaps the most 'radical' anti-establishment generation coming of age until the present day. It suggested with good evidence that in the late 1960s and early 1970s when anti-establishment hippy youngsters were making noise, an overwhelming majority of older industrial Labour voters were far more likely to stay Labour voters in the 1980s while the young hippies grew up to splinter with many becoming the professional workers who made a key base of the Conservative Party in the 1980s.

Now I think one of the key differences is today's youth are anti-establishment because of clear political failings of political leaders while fifty years ago it was as much as about personal liberation and cutting out stuffy institutional norms rather than real policy.
 

Balljy

Full Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2016
Messages
1,477
What happens when that older generation die off, I wonder? I wouldn't have thought subsequent generations would be on quite the same economic footing as they age.
A lot of that money and assets will be passed on in inheritance. That's how a lot of the money gets passed on now anyway.
 

Sweet Square

Full Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2013
Messages
15,240
Location
The Zone
"Labour has lost the working classes" is a statement that is about culture not economics. It's not about economic class anymore.
Then we aren't really talking about class.

"Labour has lost the working classes" and ''metropolitan elite'' are just racist dog whistles to appeal to a older white voters and a way to dismiss people trying to improve the country.

 

Shamwow

listens to shit music & watches Mrs Brown's Boys
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
13,817
Location
Spiderpig
Then we aren't really talking about class.

"Labour has lost the working classes" and ''metropolitan elite'' are just racist dog whistles to appeal to a older white voters and a way to dismiss people trying to improve the country.

Good way to distract Labour as well.
 

Boycott

Full Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2013
Messages
5,901
Then we aren't really talking about class.

"Labour has lost the working classes" and ''metropolitan elite'' are just racist dog whistles to appeal to a older white voters and a way to dismiss people trying to improve the country.

Did you read the subsequent post?

I agree that it's a racist dog whistle. I made it clear so. But it's working because fearmongering about immigration is a timeless political tactic whereas economic class warfare is incompatible in this era where people want to use the 20th century imagery of being "working class" (white, male, no degree, manual worker) in the 21st century where white males with no degrees in trade jobs actually can earn more than their more educated peers. After that it's not about economics but status.
 

Sweet Square

Full Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2013
Messages
15,240
Location
The Zone
Did you read the subsequent post?

I agree that it's a racist dog whistle. I made it clear so. But it's working because fearmongering about immigration is a timeless political tactic whereas economic class warfare is incompatible in this era where people want to use the 20th century imagery of being "working class" (white, male, no degree, manual worker) in the 21st century where white males with no degrees in trade jobs actually can earn more than their more educated peers. After that it's not about economics but status.
Oh sorry I didn't mean to imply it was you're view.
 
Last edited:

nickm

Full Member
Joined
May 20, 2001
Messages
7,974
I think the results in Hartlepool and the rest of 'Super Thursday' tells us loads about the current strategy, namely that it isn't working.

I get that it's an unusual political landscape due to COVID, but I think laying out the factors you did as why it was always going to be an impossible task is way too reductive.

Taking each of your explanations for Labour's failure in turn...

War time government
Starmer let the Tories get away with one of the worst COVID death tolls and worst economic impacts in the world because of his obsession with focus group data suggesting voters don't want a leader to 'play politics' with the pandemic. Meaning none of the death and misery caused by government decisions stuck. He also didn't present any coherent vision for the country post-pandemic. Different circumstances but Atlee beat national hero Winston Churchill in the aftermath of WW2 by telling the British public that whilst Churchill won the war, Labour were best placed to win the peace.

'An economy about to boom'
Britain's economy was damaged more than any other G7 nation and whilst GDP will rebound slightly this year, it's just not true to say the economy is about to boom. We'll be looking at record unemployment, unprecedented SME insolvency and some industries perhaps never returning. I don't think you could imagine a better time to present a more equal, local, new economic system to the electorate than now.

A very successful vaccination programme
Administered by the NHS, unlike the disastrous test and trace plan administered by the private sector. Vote for the party who wants to protect the NHS, not the party trying to sell it off and award health contracts to their incompetent wealthy pals. I mean this stuff basically writes itself!

House prices on fire
Britain has relatively low homeownership so this is irrelevant / a negative thing for a decent chunk of the population, but even for homeowners I don't think the housing bubble is something that is attributed to the Tory government.

Regarding Corbyn and electoral success... Corbynism led us to a terrible election result in 2019 but Corbyn still won this seat twice during his leadership. As much as Brexit is being used as an excuse this time (the Brexit Party vote going to the Tories) his offering managed to turn a larger UKIP vote percent in 2015 back to Labour in 2017 and win with over 50% of the vote.

Your Kinnock comment is interesting unless I am misinterpreting it- you'd settle for Starmer achieving what Kinnock did - a divided party and electoral failure as a price paid to wage a factional battle against the left. If you that's what you hope Starmer does, then why even bother making excuses for the election defeat?
Yeah, I'd settle for Starmer achieving what Kinnock did - bringing Labour back towards electability, and laying the foundations for its subsequent hegemony under Blair.

Taking the above in turn:
a) the electorate doesn't blame Boris for covid deaths. Should it? Yes. Could Starmer have done more to shine a light on it? Maybe, but ultimately the government threw throw billions at the problem in ways that outweighed the valid criticisms. If they hadn't maybe Starmer might have been able to get better traction. And on the wartime point about Churchill, I'd counter with the Falklands. Kinnock couldn't lay a glove on Thatcher after that, despite a terrible recession, vast unemployment and other advantages he had.
b) economy about to boom. Well, it is. yes, furlough is going to end, yes, there is terrible, hidden damage. Yes, there's a snapback that will most likely level off quickly. But people are optimistic right now, and that's to the government's benefit. The time for a weighty economic plan is a year or so from now.
c) vaccination programme. Yes, it was administered by the NHS, but it was initiated by the government. Credit's due there. And even if it wasn't, all things being equal, if the government gets electoral blame when the NHS doesn't deliver, presumably it's entitled to electoral credit when the NHS does deliver.
d) house prices on fire - just pointing out it's another well established reason for a large group of people to vote Tory.

Let's not forget Corbyn lost all those Red Wall seats in the first place, of which Hartlepool is just the latest. Starmer is continuing an unfortunate trend, and for sure he needs to be accountable for that.The argument that if Labour had been more "Corbynesque", Hartlepool would have been saved, isn't tenable given the prior collapse of the Red wall around it. Clearly Starmer doesn't have an answer to that either, but then, nobody else credible does at the moment.
 
Last edited:

nickm

Full Member
Joined
May 20, 2001
Messages
7,974
The left probably can't win in our current economic and political climate, I agree.
Finally, someone here who agrees with Tony Blair about what happens when a traditional left wing party competes with a traditional right wing party.

I believe whether it's through climate change or the continued inequality and decline of economic conditions during late stage capitalism, there will be a tipping point in the not too distant future where the anger at impotent politicians and the demand for a radical rethink will become too great to ignore. Whether that will take the form of a green socialist agenda or a far right retreat into the bosom of the nation state remains to be seen.
Keep waiting. Capitalism will reform itself before then, as it always does.
 

T00lsh3d

Full Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2014
Messages
4,056
It always amazed me that so many people like measures that punish the unemployed and are so keen to have schemes to stop them being "lazy" with punitive punishments for not doing pointless things when there is nowhere near full employment. Employment law in the UK is broken with zero hours contracts and a woeful minimum wage.
I wonder if it comes from job dissatisfaction. If you have a job that stimulates and rewards you, you’re less likely to have a problem with people not working. If you’re breaking your back stacking shelves for 12 hours you’re probably more likely to take the hump
 

Jippy

Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes
Staff
Joined
Nov 19, 2009
Messages
49,575
Location
Jet fuel doesn't melt steel beams
I wonder if it comes from job dissatisfaction. If you have a job that stimulates and rewards you, you’re less likely to have a problem with people not working. If you’re breaking your back stacking shelves for 12 hours you’re probably more likely to take the hump
Even if people love their jobs plenty still resent paying taxes and funding the unemployed as they see it.
 

Lebowski

Full Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2010
Messages
557
Location
Collyhurst
Yeah, I'd settle for Starmer achieving what Kinnock did - bringing Labour back towards electability, and laying the foundations for its subsequent hegemony under Blair.

Taking the above in turn:
a) the electorate doesn't blame Boris for covid deaths. Should it? Yes. Could Starmer have done more to shine a light on it? Maybe, but ultimately the government threw throw billions at the problem in ways that outweighed the valid criticisms. If they hadn't maybe Starmer might have been able to get better traction. And on the wartime point about Churchill, I'd counter with the Falklands. Kinnock couldn't lay a glove on Thatcher after that, despite a terrible recession, vast unemployment and other advantages he had.
b) economy about to boom. Well, it is. yes, furlough is going to end, yes, there is terrible, hidden damage. Yes, there's a snapback that will most likely level off quickly. But people are optimistic right now, and that's to the government's benefit. The time for a weighty economic plan is a year or so from now.
c) vaccination programme. Yes, it was administered by the NHS, but it was initiated by the government. Credit's due there. And even if it wasn't, all things being equal, if the government gets electoral blame when the NHS doesn't deliver, presumably it's entitled to electoral credit when the NHS does deliver.
d) house prices on fire - just pointing out it's another well established reason for a large group of people to vote Tory.

Let's not forget Corbyn lost all those Red Wall seats in the first place, of which Hartlepool is just the latest. Starmer is continuing an unfortunate trend, and for sure he needs to be accountable for that.The argument that if Labour had been more "Corbynesque", Hartlepool would have been saved, isn't tenable given the prior collapse of the Red wall around it. Clearly Starmer doesn't have an answer to that either, but then, nobody else credible does at the moment.
It seems fairly clear this is an ideological disagreement, which is fine, but I can't see us finding much common ground.

You admit that you're happy for Starmer to serve a similar role to Kinnock and basically sacrifice short term electoral success to wage an internal war on the left of his own party. You justify this because you believe there is no other path to electoral success than to purge the left and set the groundwork for a charismatic centrist leader to take advantage when the economic and political climate allows.

Whilst I agree that there isn't currently any leadership candidates that seem viable and electoral success in the short term for a left of centre party wouldn't be easy, I don't see any merit electorally or morally for Starmer's current internal war with the left. I also think it's morally bankrupt when you consider that Starmer was elected by Labour members and given a mandate based on his 10 pledges, with party unity being at the forefront of his campaign. Even if I did agree that purging the left was the only way to electability, as a believer in democracy I would still be against doing that without a mandate from the members.

Anyway I think we fundamentally disagree on the merits of centrism and I don't think either of us will change the other's mind. Fundamentally I'm not prepared for the Labour party's position to be calibrated to wherever the Conservatives and their supporting media class happen to he at the time, because there's too much at stake. I also think that in the period of climate emergency and late stage capitalism that we're living through, finding a mythical centre ground is impossible when real conditions for an increasing size of the population continue to get worse.

To end on a note of agreement, at least we (and the electorate) both agree that Starmer is fairly useless.
 

ThierryHenry

wishes he could watch Arsenal games with KM
Joined
Feb 8, 2009
Messages
12,961
Location
London Town
i think he’s Labours version of Theresa May. Just a really awkward, uncharismatic leader.
Spot on. The warning signs were there in the leadership race, he's a surprisingly poor speaker, and potentially even more awkward to listen to than Ed Miliband.

The hope was that this would be offset by the golden goose of 'competence', given his CV, but there's limited evidence of that yet. I'm still cautiously optimistic that this is something that he can improve on in time, and a combination of a more competent Labour Party + energising the base with the 2017 manifesto is about as good as the party can currently hope for... but it increasingly looks like he's crap at the politics side (much like May) and will lose the necessary political capital for the project to work.

The funny point to me is how much of a vessel he seems to be, even since his entry into politics. I actually believe he's relatively left-wing, which hasn't come across at all as he's tried to portray himself as serious and sensible. He's trying to give off the 'vibe' of a Blair-type centrist figure, and avoid all of the culture war issues, while talking up a reasonably left-wing manifesto. But the messaging strategy at doing any of that has utterly failed, with the left thinking he hates them, the right calling him 'woke' and the middle having no idea who he is or what he stands for.
 
Last edited:

Smores

Full Member
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
22,309
What particularly woke things has Starmer actually done to be criticised for being in thrall to the woke left? The most high-profile issue of that ilk I can recall since he's been in charge is the statue-toppling, which he said (and then was criticised for saying) is wrong.

Or is this just a general accusation of wokism (which probably isn't a word) that would be applied to pretty much anyone leading the Labour party?
Nothing, they're just letting their bias against the left mean the answer to every question is purge the left, it's cutein a way. Centrism is in a bad way the last week they're all very confused about what nonsense position to take so they can get back to their apparent intellectual high ground.

The votes are in that magical place where you pretend to be from neither the left or right as if political leaning is more important than the popularity of actual policy.
 

Gehrman

Phallic connoisseur, unlike shamans
Joined
Feb 20, 2019
Messages
4,816
What particularly woke things has Starmer actually done to be criticised for being in thrall to the woke left? The most high-profile issue of that ilk I can recall since he's been in charge is the statue-toppling, which he said (and then was criticised for saying) is wrong.

Or is this just a general accusation of wokism (which probably isn't a word) that would be applied to pretty much anyone leading the Labour party?
The only thing I can think of is that he decided to undergo unconscious bias training and thought that everyone should go through it when he was accused of racism for thinking that defunding the police is a nonsense idea.

https://www.theguardian.com/politic...-for-unconscious-bias-training-amid-criticism
 

Fluctuation0161

Full Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2016
Messages
4,575
Location
Manchester
Spot on. The warning signs were there in the leadership race, he's a surprisingly poor speaker, and potentially even more awkward to listen to than Ed Miliband.

The hope was that this would be offset by the golden goose of 'competence', given his CV, but there's limited evidence of that yet. I'm still cautiously optimistic that this is something that he can improve on in time, and a combination of a more competent Labour Party + energising the base with the 2017 manifesto is about as good as the party can currently hope for... but it increasingly looks like he's crap at the politics side (much like May) and will lose the necessary political capital for the project to work.

The funny point to me is how much of a vessel he seems to be, even since his entry into politics. I actually believe he's relatively left-wing, which hasn't come across at all as he's tried to portray himself as serious and sensible. He's trying to give off the 'vibe' of a Blair-type centrist figure, and avoid all of the culture war issues, while talking up a reasonably left-wing manifesto. But the messaging strategy at doing any of that has utterly failed, with the left thinking he hates them, the right calling him 'woke' and the middle having no idea who he is or what he stands for.
I'm yet to see his left wing manifesto?

Do you mean the leadership campaign pledges he has systematically broken?