Pete and Jeremy and being certain

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I was listening to Professor Peter Shirlow, late of this parish, on THE VIEW (BBC ONE) the other night. He was talking about the possible replacement of Dr Alasdair McDonnell by Colum Eastwood come November, and he tossed in something that I thought deserved to be challenged but wasn’t. He was stressing the importance of Colum Eastwood or Alasdair McDonnell winning elections. “It’s like Jeremy Corbyn – will he win elections? And the answer is, of course he won’t”.


This is part of a repeated mantra throughout the British media. You might like Corbyn, you might detest him, but he’s not going to win any elections. I call that line of talk insidious and pompous and, ultimately, stupid. It’ll be five years before Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party is put to the test. The Labour Party has lost the last two general elections in Britain. Corbyn , on grounds of strategy as well as conviction, is advocating a radically different approach. Of course you can say “The great majority of the British people don’t see things his way”. Is mor an trua sin – more’s the pity. The point is, he has five years to convince them that his way is a better way, a more compassionate way, a more successful way. Maybe he won’t succeed. But to decide he won’t succeed because right now, the mass of the British public don’t see things his way is pompous and, as I said, ultimately stupid. If you follow that line of thinking to its logical conclusion, the Labour Party should adopt Tory policies and make them central to their next election manifesto, on the grounds that that is what most British people are thinking…Oh. They tried that the last two times out. And it was catastrophic. Mmmm. I rest my case.

25 Responses to Pete and Jeremy and being certain

  1. neill September 27, 2015 at 11:47 am #

    Jude your case is very week Labour lost the last two elections because bye and large the people of the country didn’t trust the leadership of the labour party and if they didn’t like Ed they certainly wont trust Corbyn or his far left policies.

    Corbyn will be gone soon probably just after January when the Labour party realises that nobody outside the Unions will give them election money and if the unions are the main donors that plays into the hands of the Tories.

    Oh by the way Labour won the elections under Blair because they effectively became Tories and inhabited the middle ground tell me how the last out and out left Labour did in general elections?

    • Ryan September 27, 2015 at 12:19 pm #

      Neill, that crystal ball you have, would you be up for selling it?…

      BTW, remind us what percentage of the vote the Tories got in May’s British General Election? Hardly the overwhelming majority accepting Tory policies….

      • neill September 27, 2015 at 6:56 pm #

        Did they beat Labour yes or no?

  2. giordanobruno September 27, 2015 at 12:16 pm #

    I think the most optimistic view would be that the many peoplewho do not vote may be energised by Corbyn and come out to vote Labour in the next election.
    Unfortunately,his problem is not so much with the voters as with his his real enemy (as Churchill said) on the benches behind him.
    That is why the general view seems to be that he will not make it to the next election.

  3. billy September 27, 2015 at 12:30 pm #

    5yrs is a long time,getting out of europe and stopping the hordes arriving are the main things the british people want to vote on,corbyn is out of touch with reality,have to agree with neil here cant see him being leader next yr.

  4. Ryan September 27, 2015 at 12:41 pm #

    Is Jeremy Corbyn unelectable? well we know the answer to that, the man has been an MP for decades and won an outright majority at the Labour Leadership election, so obviously he isn’t. Is he PM material? Yes, definitely, more so than Tony Blair and ten times as much as that dimwit George W Bush. Its astonishing Bush is allowed near a cooker, never mind the controls of the most powerful nation on Earth.

    The hostile opponents of Corbyn, and there are many, will come at him from every direction to attack him but as I always said “The People aren’t stupid”. It reminds me a lot of what Gerry Adams has to endure. Everything from digging up the past to throwing the kitchen sink has been used against Gerry Adams and Sinn Fein and it just doesn’t seem to work. Gerry and SF continue to challenge the Government in the South. There was recently a poll done in the “” asking people who they intend to vote for in next years general election and 25% said Sinn Fein, the largest share of the vote.

    I think when it comes to the next British General Election that Corbyn will make gains for Labour, will he become PM? He certainly has a good chance, more so than Ed Miliband did, put it that way.

  5. Séamus Ó Néill September 27, 2015 at 12:44 pm #

    Wishful thinking Neill ,wouldn’t have anything remotely linked to Jeremy’s support for a re-united Ireland…..I know “left” thinking Unionists are as rare as hens teeth but you don’t have any say in who runs Britain if I was British I think I would definitely prefer Mr Corbyn to the ultra smug Mr Cameroink.

    • neill September 27, 2015 at 7:01 pm #

      He could support open air orgies and he still wont win the election and you know why he aint credible even his own MP`s don’t support him. After all he barely accepted the whip then why should his political opponents in the Labour party help him out now?

  6. Perkin Warbeck September 27, 2015 at 1:14 pm #

    Whatever about the chances of Jeremy Corbyn high-fiving it into Number 10, Esteemed Blogmeister, the naming of a new contender for the top spot in the SDLP has certainly caused a deal of fluttering in the political dovecots in Dublin.

    For far too long now the bleating sheep of the manipulated media on Liffeyside have looked northward towards Norneverland and have not been fed. Long gone indeed are the heady days when all the All-Conquering water-mallon eaters had to do was Stoop down low, while simultaneously hissing their lines about Sunningdale and slowlearners through teeth.

    And with a fistful of dollars in one hand (courtesy of Sir A.J. O’Reilly, Ireland’s poorest former richest man) and a Magnum ice-cream in the other.

    An Eastwood high priest with the initial C
    Bodes indeed good for the toady S.D.L.P.
    ‘Go on, make my day
    I dare you TAL to say
    In the Hog’s Breath Inn on Carmel-on-Sea’.

    • Jude Collins September 27, 2015 at 4:59 pm #

      You’ve made my day, Perkin…

  7. ANOTHER JUDE September 27, 2015 at 1:41 pm #

    Labour lost the last election because the Tories spooked the horses and told the working class English voter they would be ruled by the Scottish Nationalists, unfortunately Ed Miliband played into that scenario and the thick English electorate agreed. They played the modern day Scottish equivalent of the Orange card which they have played in regard to Ireland over the centuries. The likes of Cooper and Burnham have scuttled away from their leader, simply because he isn`t a Blair clone. Shame on them. I wish Jeremy Corbyn all the best, he is preferable to the Bullingdon boys,who have made a pigs ear (and other bits) of running the UK since sliding in on the back of the unlamented Nick Clegg`s lust for power and ministerial perks.

  8. Mary Jo September 27, 2015 at 1:45 pm #

    Neil, maybe the UK is ready for the politics of honesty and justice and human decency. I was shocked, reading the Guardian’s account of the Labour leadership election, at the totally venal politics of “establishment” Labour figures. ( Apart from Corbyn, candidates and their supporters cared only for what would make the party popular and electable. Principles did not enter into their thinking when voting – or not voting, for example, on the Conservatives’ obscene Welfare Bill.
    I believe that human beings are posessed of an innate sense of decency and a desire for fair play that has been mocked and made seem contemptible by right wing and neo-liberal media and politicians. The groundswell of support for Corbyn may be the onset of a demand for a new politics based on principles of justice and humanity; a rejection of the selfish, mean-minded politics of rich unprincipled oligarchies.
    I am naive enough to hope so.

    • neill September 27, 2015 at 7:07 pm #

      Idealism is a wonderful thing, all you need is someone rational to put it to proper use.

  9. jessica September 27, 2015 at 6:54 pm #

    What happens in 2017 could lead to another Scottish referendum, and maybe this time they will have the courage to go that extra mile to break free of the ball and chain and take control of their own destiny in a way more fitting for scots, no trident etc….

    Labour would need to take back Scotland from the SNP which they may never again do.

    The Tories might very well be the right party for England.

    Change is coming.

    Scottish independence may not have succeeded first time around, but it may well have already changed things more than we yet realise.

    England’s relationship with the EU will definitely be changing.

    Lets hope Scotland will not be part of one of those future elections you refer to.

  10. Wolfe tone September 27, 2015 at 7:09 pm #

    Tell a lie often enough and people will eventually believe it. I am guessing that is the decided attack mode of the British establishment re Jeremy Corbyn won’t win elections.
    If the British media that is owned by Tory toffs and their ilk are truly convinced that Corbyn is unelectable as prime minister and that he is a godsend for the conservatives then why oh why are they undermining him? Surely they should let him roll on with his policies after all according to the experts he is ‘guaranteeing the Tories win the next general election? Surely that suits the Tory loving owners of these newspapers etc?
    To say labour lost the last general election because the public didn’t trust miliband is stretching it a bit(the newspapers told you that). More likely the British public viewed labour as the other cheek of the same ass in that their policies didn’t differ any from the Tories? Added to the fact the media highlighted the bumbling attempt by miliband at eating a sandwich(yes some people are that fickle) and it perhaps dawned on people if he can’t eat a bloody sandwich what hope has he of running the country. I would guess a large percentage of the public are completely turned off by the politicians that are available as they never rock the state and truly change things and so they don’t even vote. Much like here in the north. Now along comes Corbyn who by possible mistake ends up being leader of a major party and he’s got all the establishment ball bags gunning for him even those within the Labour Party. Why? In the eyes of the establishment in my opinion Corbyn must not succeed as he could indeed threaten the interests of those who are truly milking the state. It’s a bit like the Scottish independence campaign when all sorts came out from under their rocks to prevent the establishment losing its power. For that reason only Corbyn will more than likely fail to win elections as he will be up against a machine that uses every trick in the book to maintain its grip on society. He’s up against it big time and his only chance is if he manages to convince those turned off by corrupt politicians to come out and vote.

  11. Séamus Ó Néill September 27, 2015 at 7:23 pm #

    Mary Jo , I don’t think you’re naive in the slightest……I believe that that the absolute majority of people are honest ,kind ,friendly and want to live in peace and co-operation with their fellow human beings.It has always been a policy of England to divide and conquer , an imperialist policy that has led them to become one of the most despised countries on earth,,,,,,but fortunately that has run it’s course…they got themselves into an intractable position , where British citizenship was granted willy-nilly around the world, when transport to England took months and cost a fortune…. nobody was able to come from those far distant shores ,,,,today it takes hours and very little money and they arrive demanding their rights in a country that manufactures very little, can’t afford them ,and is in debt to the hilt …..then they do what worked in the past,,,,,,create more wars ,but that generates more animosity ,more hatred and unfortunately more misery stricken refugees……The West is collapsing under t’s own capitalist arrogance but Jeremy Corbyn seems to be a man of vision amongst the lunatics…..perhaps he can show England a way out of her madness.

  12. billy September 27, 2015 at 10:07 pm #

    england knows all about invading countries,the invasion of the migrants,foreign aid being doled out,deporting illegals,are higher up on peoples minds than corbyns tree hugging policies these thing will be a big decider in 5 yrs time.if it comes to a vote to leave euro land watch him somersault.

  13. neill September 27, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

    The West is collapsing under t’s own capitalist arrogance but Jeremy Corbyn seems to be a man of vision amongst the lunatics…..perhaps he can show England a way out of her madness.

    Do you actually believe that or are you naïve?

  14. Séamus Ó Néill September 28, 2015 at 12:37 pm #

    Neill ,the complete opposite…I am a very down to earth realist…I know that the only reason England is still here is because we are still a net contributor to her exchequer….we donate more than we get back ,it’s not because of “disloyal” loyalists constantly threatening mayhem, or a belief in fair play…if that scenario changes or they become completely pissed off they will extract themselves from here quicker than greased lightening regardless of the consequences….to them we are a very troublesome colony full of impetuous “Paddies”…more trouble than they’re worth !

    • jessica September 28, 2015 at 1:09 pm #

      Really, I was under the impression after our taxes the cost to GB was around £10 billion per year. Britain have no interest in remaining here.

      They dont want to leave until the peace process is settled.

      If the general English tax payer get wind of the huge expense, they may not have a choice.

  15. Séamus Ó Néill September 28, 2015 at 3:21 pm #

    Jessica , the facts and figures have already been stated a couple of weeks ago on this blog…England/Britain is not subsidising us at all … for having no interest here ,beware of perfidious Albion…they may have stated that but instinct coupled with 846 years of brutal domination and several attempts at the obliteration of my people have taught me differently ….I certainly don’t believe that they are a benevolent neighbour trying to bed down a Peace Process but rather a ruthless bully with dark ulterior motives

    • jessica September 28, 2015 at 4:24 pm #

      So is this just porkies then?
      I wouldn’t be surprised to be honest. They did the same with Scotland and its oil.

      5.2 Table 5.1 summarises the fiscal positions of NI and the UK. In 2011-12 the estimated net fiscal balance for the public sector in NI was a deficit of £9.6 billion (33.1 per cent of GVA).

  16. Séamus Ó Néill September 28, 2015 at 6:59 pm #

    Jessica ,here is part of a blog on this site 19/08/15
    “According to a document by HMRC from October 2014 showing the disaggregation of the tax receipts of the UK regions ( N.Ireland gives a fair amount back. From the HRMC figures in table 3 we are shown receipts from N.Ireland in 2012/13 of £10,328 million and in 2013/14 £10,670 million. So in 2012/13 the UK Treasury gave us £10,717.8 million but took back £10,328 million and in 2013/14 gave us £10,707.7 million but took back £10,670 million. So arguably it’s only a few hundred million more (yes I know it’s not that easy) the Treasury gives us as a grant than they actually take out so we don’t cost them that much. On a side note the same figures show Scotland give much much more than they get back. In this aspect we may have the answer as to why we don’t have exact figures made readily available by Westminster.
    Is the North of Ireland really just an economic drain? by Seamas Óg
    page 4 August 19th

    • jessica September 28, 2015 at 8:01 pm #

      This only covers the tax revenue taken in against partial benefits paid out.

      The benefits here are the highest cost to the UK coffers. In order to make the NI state as weak as it is, the public sector had to top up the economy.

      This means the public sector here was deliberately bloated to sustain some form of economic stability while britain ran its military operations here.

      The result is an unsustainable public sector costing the UK exchequer around 10 billion every year which makes the tax revenue figure look like peanuts. That is a fact.

      On top of this, britain neglected to invest in the infrastructure which is now decades behind. The water and sewage infrastructure, roads and many other areas have suffered.

      Britain need to pay to repair the infrastructure here and we should focus on not letting them off the hook.

      One way or another, they are going to need to pump billions into the economy here before they can leave.

      The best way to hit britain is in its pockets.

  17. Séamus Ó Néill September 29, 2015 at 7:12 am #

    Totally agree with hitting them where it hurts ,lives are immaterial to the English government in the scheme of things….the Baltic Exchange ,Downing St ,Bishopsgate, etc bombings brought them to the negotiating table almost instantly whereas the lives that were ,very regretfully, expended over 30 odd years seemed to matter so little….Oh they made political capital from those deaths like the vultures they are but have been exposed as hypocritical parasites ,being themselves engaged in loathsome murder .Yes indeed ,MONEY,is the international language and will eventually lead ,when the financial burden becomes too much, to the re-unification of our country.