Sunday, June 26, 2016
General Election choice: The Joke or the Joker
Will Labour clear out their stable of will they just let the muck pile up?
I could see my country go into meltdown when I left the Gateshead count at 3.30am on Friday morning. By then, the Leave lead was over 750,000. There was no way short of a miracle that the gap could be closed. I went to bed at 4am and woke up at 7.45am to the news of the official declaration that Leave had won. At 8.30am, having just returned from feeding my livestock, I was met by the news that Cameron had announced his resignation. The Tories had gone into meltdown, the economy was going into meltdown. And this morning, I woke to the news that Labour had gone into meltdown. Corbyn's sacking of Hilary Benn seems something of a self-inflicted wound but it could also be the match that sets Labour light.
The trouble for Labour is that they are stuck with Corbyn. He may he a nice bloke but my chickens show more leadership qualities than he does. He is an oppositionist who fights against change. He is no leader. Yet even if MPs vote for a no confidence motion, Corbyn will win a membership ballot. Labour are stuck with him until such point as he feels he cannot remain as leader. And at the moment, he is not showing any signs of wanting to go.
Corbyn was unforgivably low profile during the referendum. I put this point to Ian Mearns, Labour MP for Gateshead, at the count in the early hours of Friday morning. According to him, Corbyn was very active but there was a conspiracy in the media to report only blue on blue battles. The fantasy world of Labour is alive and well.
There is a growing prospect that at the general election, the offer to the nation for Prime Minister is a choice between The Joke and The Joker. It is an unappealing prospect, Jeremy Corbyn versus Boris Johnson. Furthermore, don't underestimate Johnson. He may come over as a buffoon but he has risen to the top against the odds. He won the 2012 London mayoral election against the odds. He holds no cabinet position but is regarded as the favourite to win the Tory leadership. As long as Corbyn or another oppositionist left-winger is leading the Labour Party, Johnson is likely to be secure as Prime Minister.
I have to clear out my goat house now. I wonder whether Labour will carry out a similarly thorough clear out. I somehow doubt it.