Corbyn Warnings

There’s nothing odd about spirited electioneering. But the level of attacks Labour Leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn is enduring is remarkable. From being the rank outsider at something like 100-1 he’s now firm favourite. This is despite spirited efforts by old ‘New Labour’ heavyweights – including two former Prime Ministers and other senior politicians associated with the Blair years – warning of disaster should Corbyn win the race to lead Labour.

Some of it has been quite comical. There’s a satirical ‘Twitter’ site called @CorbynWarnings. It appears to be poking fun at the apocalyptic pictures of doom which Corbyn’s detractors have painted should this left-winger assume the reins of power. Here are some of the Corbyn Warnings: Corbyn “obsessed with destroying the moon,” warns MP; Corbyn’s fangs inject a venom which is highly poisonous to humans warns MP; ’’warning about Corbyn only makes him stronger, warns MP; if Corbyn is elected, he will “become more powerful than you can possibly imagine,” warns MP; Corbyn may still be present in Lancashire water supply, warns MP; Corbyn “probably a ghost,” warns MP; and my favourite – Corbyn “potentially full of bees,” warns MP.

It does indeed seem that Corbyn is being accused of powers to evoke some kind of political Armageddon – as if his potential leadership is to be likened to the dark rise of Darth Vadar in Star Wars. But the thing is, Corbyn’s success is in part directly due to those who now criticise him. I’ve been told by one insider that his popularity gains from the reaction of ‘the manicured, sound-bite friendly breed who look and act like professional career politicians. Jeremy’s beard, open neck shirt and understated commentary on life, the Universe and everything has gained traction with people who want someone they can regard as authentic.

It is not for me, or anyone else outside Labour, to proscribe to Labour members whom they should elect. However, the outcome will be a clear barometer of the mood of the party, and, in a sense, the country. The other candidates are perfectly presentable. But if Corbyn wins, it could suggest those who dedicate their lives to being politicians for the love of the process rather than the love of a principle may be losing ground to a more earthy ‘traditional’ sort who, like real ale, fish ‘n’ chips and old MGB sports cars, still have a home in the hearts and minds of the Great British public.