Saturday, 20 August 2016

AS comment on Corbyn

This is a comment from a friend on fb. That's probably enough context for you to find out who, if you really want to, and he put it on fb so it isn't exactly secret. I liked it, particularly the start, so I'll copy it here.

I'm going to have to reply in more detail later for time/life reasons.
In short, I think
(a) Corbyn is a lightweight stuck in student politics. He can't react to events beyond giving a standard angry student speech.
(b) Many of his simplistic views are just knee-jerk anti-establishment/anti-capitalism/anti-USA, and are nonsense in terms of actual national policy (apart from often being plain immoral).
(c) He often has to be prompted and helped to say vaguely sensible things because he has no skills beyond student-politics rhetoric.
(d) When he backtracks over some nonsense he has uttered, he does so in a completely dishonest way.
(e) He pretends to be peace-loving and in favour of kinder, gentler politics, but to the extent this is true at all, it is completely subordinate to his other naive associations. E.g., he really was friends with the IRA, Hamas, Hezbollah, Chavez, Maduro, Iran etc and really did sympathise with or defend Milosevic, Hoxha, Gaddafi, etc., and these people/organisations are worse than he would have you believe. Basically these sorts of accusations against him are largely true and it's all the denials that are stretching the truth.
(f) There really is some kind of Labour antisemitism problem, and Corbyn is part of it. He only cares about it to the extent that it makes him looks bad. In fact he encourages it by his friendships and associations with the worst kind of antisemites and his evasive and dishonest answers. He rarely gets questioned very accurately or strongly, which lets his devotees think he is a nice man being bullied. (This is a repeating pattern for other criticisms.)
(g) His EU referendum campaign was a disgrace, and he, or his team, probably actively sabotaged it. By his actions and inactions, he lost millions of working class voters to UKIP and then claimed a 63% vote for Remain out of the rump Labour vote that hadn't actually defected to UKIP was some kind of success. He wanted to invoke Article 50 immediately, which would have been a disaster (which even he admits now). Either he is completely clueless or he really wanted out of the EU. My money is firmly on both.
(h) After a year we don't actually have any concrete policies. E.g., he has intimated he wanted to withdraw from NATO, but then seemingly backtracked saying there wasn't the will. His left wing economic gurus have abandoned him saying that they had wanted to help, but his policies make no sense or are nonexistent beyond being "anti-austerity".
(i) Momentum has a thuggish element, and Corbyn will not clamp down on this because it is to his advantage.
(j) His close advisors are as bad or worse than he is, e.g., John McDonnell and the Stalinist-sympathising Seumas Milne.
Unfortunately it takes a long time to justify these statements in a way that convinces Corbyn supporters, because (in my experience) they won't believe anything bad about him that isn't proved to 100% certainty. This isn't helped by the fact that in true Orwellian style he has erased his past: he has purged all of his personal website from more than a year or so ago (e.g., his statement on how wonderful Venezuela is is now strangely absent), also seeing to it that the copies in were removed (so hard to argue this is just a Spring clean), and also purged the colourful back catalogue from the STWC website (he was the STWC Chair until recently). He has even removed the Labour policy document from last year. Since he wasn't particularly well-known before he become Labour leader, there aren't copies of his speeches lying around the internet. The most definitive remaining sources are YouTube videos of his speeches and direct quotations in newspapers and journals, but these are time-consuming to track down. (I could try to justify the above in piecemeal fashion, though this isn't really in the spirit of the Facebook timescale of a day or so.)

Not by AS, but notes on "traingate".

The story, as I recall it: Corbyn gets on a train, and is filmed sitting on the floor - man o' the people style - saying how terrible it is that trains are crowded. Fine you might say: just put the price up, though that doesn't seem to have occurred to him.

However, it then turns out he has been telling porkies. See Aunty. In very many ways.

* in the "original" Guardian article (archive) we have the headline repeated in the text "Corbyn joins seatless commuters on floor for three-hour train journey". Now even his people admit that's false: he only sat on the floor for the first 45 minutes.
* as the Beeb makes clear, he walked past empty seats.
* even his people now admit he did this, their only excuse being he couldn't sit next to his wife. Somehow, there was no space to mention that originally.
* From the Beeb again: Sir Richard's intervention prompted Mr Corbyn's leadership campaign manager Sam Tarry to tell BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "The bigger story here... it is quite astonishing that a tax exile of more than 10 years decides to lay into and make a political intervention which is essentially what this is on social media in a very public way." So what Corbyn is saying is that he should be free to lie about people, and they aren't allowed to reply. Scum.

FT: Jeremy Corbyn and the parable of the Virgin berth

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