The Labour Party is facing a crisis. Not an existential one, but one of relevance for the next few years.
In a world where solutions are sought in markets, Labour feel like a throwback that no one believes in. A problem of course is that no one knows clearly what Jeremy Corbyn believes in so what is it a throwback to exactly? We talk and shout and yet no one can hear us or understand us. Promises made are contradicted the next day, a lack of strategy, vision and basic competence meaning we will pay the price inevitably in 2020.
But you don’t need me to tell you that. You already know that. The polls have been screaming it for over a year now. Labour were the Tories before Corbyn – a reminder that problems existed before him – but are right now in such a state of peril that it’s hard to see what can be recovered. Jade Frances Azim from Open Labour recently blogged that the brand of Corbyn has tainted the ideas. It doesn’t matter what Corbyn proposes, and a lot of it isn’t rejected by the public, because he will never be accepted. His deep unpopularity is dragging down the party and his cult continue to blindly follow him and take us all down with him.
This was something easy to foresee. We took offence when David Cameron labelled him a terrorist sympathiser but how else would you describe a man who is warm about Hamas, Hezbollah and the IRA? How else would you treat a man who wishes to scrap Trident – in the vain hope the world will follow suit? A man who campaigns for peace but lost his voice over Syria?
Never mind his weak showing over Brexit, the infighting and the constant u-turns are killing the party. He’s trying to appropriate Trump’s fake news garbage and still failing.
Labour Party is in a heavy decline. Moderates and hard left members are warring with each other. The toxicity is staggering, abuse and vicious criticisms exchanged, Facebook groups devised to poke fun at the other side with memes and screenshot. The hard left have not dealt with the obscene misogyny and anti-Semitism emanating from their side. On the part of the moderates, a sneering contempt for genuine Labour socialists has left the concept of the broad church in disarray.
Make no mistake, there’s no equivalence between the abuse we are seeing, but the behaviour of some moderates is unfathomable. At a time when Corbyn is teetering on the edge, we show a middle finger than open our arms. Yes, we should be annoyed, but it isn’t constructive in laughing and sneering at fellow members. Capped off with Owen Jones walking away. Whatever you may think of him, and my opinion of him has changed negatively increasingly at times, if the left cannot even communicate with someone like him we are doomed.
Right now it doesn’t matter what side of the party you are on, we have become a calamitous joke. The sneering and bile can leave someone exhausted. I’ve been a Labour member since I was 2012 and I am exhausted- finding myself angry and bitter with people I don’t know and left feeling either miserable, diminished or perpetually pissed off. I’m resigned to life under the Tories and facing a constant struggle as a working class Muslim just to get by. Crap wages. Insane debts. High rents. And I can’t even travel to Europe for free now.
I wanted Labour to change all of this. No one should have to wonder if a dream that might have been attainable ten years ago is now unreachable because life is too expensive in Britain. If anyone could change this it’s Labour – the party of progressive principles, social justice and equal opportunities. But I’m less sure this party will do that anytime soon, at least while foolish dogma holds sway. And I’m not going to waste any more time fighting with Corbyn supporters or shaking my head at the moderates. I’d much rather prioritise my final year of uni than continue this. So would many others.
We haven’t stopped fighting since the last General Election. The theme of our arguments have shifted, but we remain aggressive, poisonous and not fit for government in 2020.