I am going on record as saying I think the Jeremy Corbyn campaign for Leadership of the Labour Party is the most exciting thing to happen in English politics for a very long time.The man is a proven dedicated and honest polician. He is a social democrat. I hope he wins and his campaign galvanises the Labour Party to become social democratic again and move forward.
The other three candidates are not social democrats --they are party clones with no new ideas. It's like listening to two Stepford Wives and one Stepford husband. Even the smiles are fixed!
I say in poetry, if you have the feelings and passion underneath your work, you can build on that. I call it emotional muscle. Without it no amount of language of music will make a good poem -- it's simply a necessary condition. It's the same in politics -- honesty and passion are essentials. Corbyn can get the Labour party to help him update his policies to suit today. In a sense those policies are timeless anyway --it's a matter of new examples of how to be progressive, new instances and technologies, new methods and approaches. Or working out what is a service and needs cooperation but not collusion, and what is business and thrives on a mix of non-hostile competition and working together.
On what needs regulating and who takes responsibility for what. On what is contemporary democracy.
To those who say this campaign is a suicide note for Labour, I say this is life-support for Labour and might lead to recovery. Blair and New Labour wrecked havoc on the soul of the Labour Party --they are shameful because they betrayed our trust and turned us into unwitting accomplices to torture and mass murder. Ed Miliband's policies were also NOT socially democratic but tory-lite. Austerity is a scientifically proven failure.
For those who say Corbyn is too old at 66, I shout 'ageist, how dare you!' Churchill became Prime Minister for the second time at nearly 77, and was only 66 the first time-- and this is decades ago. We all live much longer now.
For those who warn about the eighties and Militant --I was in the Labour Party then. The Militants (Trotskyites) were a constant irritant but we defeated them. What scuppered us numerically in General Elections were the people who split and abandoned the Party to form the SDP, later the Lib Dems.
The model to think of here is Scotland, which is run very sucessfully by a social democratic Party, the SNP. And we could link up with them, the Greens and Plaid Cymru. This might in time develop into the federal model we all need so badly. And in time for us to get down to serious work to save us all from climate change!
I will not, however, be paying up £3 to Labour to get a vote on this. New Labour broke my heart -- I remember how thrilled I was when Blair got in. How we sat up all night. How embarrassingly despicable he became, crawling around George Bush, so eager to please him. I also tried to get Ed Miliband to come out with policies for years -- any policies -- in letter after Guardian letter.
Now I am cautious. I want to know what Labour and Jeremy Corbyn will do on climate change. I support the Greens on this issue. Caroline Lucas has also been very honourable and personally brave. A lot of good research has already been done. I don't agree with the Greens on copyright issues, but to me sustainability is the most important issue for us all.
However, I wish Jeremy Corbyn's campaign all the best wishes possible. I will watch it with interest. And if he wins, I'll begin to get hopeful. Even now, a tiny bit of hope stirs. 8--)