The arrogance and intolerance of the Blairites is breathtaking. Faced with the prospect of a runaway victory for Jeremy Corbyn who has come from repudiated outsider to front-runner in scarcely more than a month, their sole response is to prepare a coup against Corbyn if he is elected leader under the section 47 procedure of the Labour Party rules. It is hard to exaggerate the folly and selfish indulgence of such a move. For the Party to spend 3 months in continuous debate and hundreds of hustings in accordance with the legitimacy of Party democracy, and then have an insider palace coup seek to overturn it via back-rooms intrigue within the PLP would be utterly disreputable. It would split the PLP and likely also the Labour Party as a whole. Maybe that is what they want: if they cannot get their own way, they would prefer to bust the Party rather than accept democratic choice. That has always been the way: the Right has always used the Party as a base for its own domination and access to government, while the Left has always remained loyal to the Party it seeks to represent.
Of course the Blairites think their clinching argument is that if the Party moves away from their chosen course – or as the obsessive and delusional Blair himself has said: “a millimetre from my path” – Labour will lose. They like to recite endlessly that Blair won three elections (though he lost 5 million votes along the way), but what they never draw attention to is that his regime, copying the Tory one of course, led to the most cataclysmic collapse of the banking system and the global economy for 100 years – not something to write home about, apparently, particularly when Blair himself played a major part in causing the collapse by his so-called ‘light regulation’ (i.e. let the markets rip and hands-off laisser faire).
What the Blairites can’t get their head around is that there is now a monumental continent-shaking tide of public opinion building up against the cruel ideology of austerity that the Right, including the Blairites, have inflicted on the public. It is happened in Greece, Spain, Italy, and even France, and it is now in full swell in Britain. Jeremy Corbyn is its champion here, and he has the further advantage, as his appearances have repeatedly shown, of manifesting conviction, principle, integrity and above all authenticity. Nor is this just about austerity alone, though that is central. It is also about sweeping away the Right-wing ideology of financial de-regulation, market fundamentalism, privatisation of all public services, and suppression of all institutions that truly represent real working people. The road to a Labour victory at the next election does not, repeat NOT, lie through continued austerity and an utterly discredited ideology; it lies through growth, the revival of wages, and the restoration of public services.