Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Corbyn, Trump, and a New Kind of Politics

 

_84586116_trumpcompThe Establishment is undone. The party’s “milquetoast defence of its economic record, its lack of direction … its bland, sputtering lack of passion” opened the door, and an utterly non-traditional politician walked through: outspoken, controversial, occasionally bizarre, willing to rip up long-held assumptions. Radical change has come – with 60 percent of the vote.

“I voted for a new kind of politics,” proclaimed Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters today as they made him leader of the British Labour Party. Corbyn’s appeal is anti-establishment, and leadership’s desperate pleas have gone completely unheeded. After the self-admitted folly of a few put him on the ballot, nearly every Labour MP opposed him. A drove of shadow cabinet members resigned today and say they will not serve under Corbyn. Tony Blair – the only Labour leader since the 1970s to actually win elections – urgently opposed him:

It’s a revolution but within a hermetically sealed bubble – not the Westminster one they despise, but one just as remote from actual reality … They’re making all those “in authority” feel their anger and their power. There is a sense of real change because of course the impact on politics is indeed real …

However, it doesn’t alter the “real” reality. It provides a refuge from it.

The once overwhelmingly popular leader begged the party to step back from the edge: If your “heart” is with Corbyn, Blair suggested, “get a transplant.” This didn’t work.

The far left and the unions are overjoyed. Sinn Fein is congratulatory. One of the few Labour politicians enthusiastic about Corbyn is the new Scottish Labour leader:

Today shows politics has changed. People are calling for radical change and straight talk … I’ve said I want my leadership to be about shaking up the establishment in Scotland, and Jeremy wants to do the same across the UK. What people want is real change – not just in their politics, but in their lives. Today offers the chance for that change.

She is right. People in the UK – and across the Atlantic – are desperate for straight talk and for change that really matters. But she is wrong, because the hope Corbyn is offering is a false promise.

What does this man want to do? He promotes a far-left wish list of socialist policies Labour abandoned years ago. Rent controls, printing money to “invest” in the economy, tax increases, ending what little private enterprise there is in healthcare, re-nationalization of whatever he can, maybe bringing back Clause IV, Labour’s pre-Blair commitment to public ownership of industry, and more. He wants to withdraw from NATO. He has not avoided anti-semitic associations, and has used the word “friends” of Hamas and Hezbollah. He wants unilateral nuclear disarmament.

Corbyn has a few flip-flops in his record and is decidedly fuzzy on EU membership: With a referendum looming, you’d think that would have been an important question in a leadership election, but at a certain fever-pitch of politics even matters of vital national importance are overlooked. He has a few other outside-the-box ideas: let’s consider all-female train cars!

Corbyn’s appeal is easy to see: He is no traditional Establishment politician. And, let it be perfectly clear, he fights.

The disenchantment that produced Corbyn is real, it transcends parties, and it exists on our side of the Atlantic. Jeremy Corbyn and Donald Trump are very different manifestations of the same phenomenon: a bitter disillusionment with established politics, a passionate rejection of old leadership, an enthusiastic embrace of something that seems new in pursuit of change. Their policies are of course different and their personal styles are not that alike, other than a certain curmudgeonly pleasure in shattering long-held presumptions. But both speak less to specific ideological issues than to a disconnect between the people and the ruling class. The only answer, of course, is true leadership, which Labour cannot provide. We are better off: We have conservatives who can — if they can communicate and will be heard and accepted.

There is nothing new under the sun. Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters think they voted for “a new kind of politics.” They did not. They voted for a barely repackaged set of old, dangerous, unpopular ideas.

I remember when Tony Blair was the fresh inspiring figure whose new kind of politics swept the nation before him. Today, Labour voters can see that he was a politician like any other. The bubble is burst; his triumph rings hollow. Someday in retrospect, the excitement swirling around Corbyn today will ring just as false and perhaps worse, the beginning of a greater disaster for party or country. Corbyn’s supporters forgot that any office-seeker, however different his style and promises, is another mere human politician. Very probably, they will face crushing electoral defeat and learn again why the Labour establishment and all those old tired politicians rejected outright socialism and fought Corbyn’s rise. If not – if, as is just possible, the Tories fail to hold their own coalition together – Britain will reap the whirlwind.

I can appreciate the despair of the Labour establishment; they deserved their loss. Corbyn and his “new” politics may inspire thousands and be fun to watch if not taken seriously. But he is now Britain’s Leader of the Opposition, and those who put him there will feel the effect, one way or another, of the false promises they believed and the things they did not think mattered.

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  1. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    (Deleted — irrelevant programming note)

    • #1
    • September 12, 2015, at 4:34 PM PDT
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  2. Steve C. Member

    This situation requires a really stupid and futile gesture…

    Maybe the members of the Labor Party have accepted that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. They got nowhere with the bozos they have. Might as well try new bozos. Think about how frustrated and irritated the average American voter has become. Every 2 years the message is, elect Republicans to stop the President. The result: the alleged smart leaders of the GOP stumble from failure to failure. If they are having us on with “failure theater” they deserve Trump. If they are incapable of matching promises with capability (to me that’s the real problem: over promising and under delivering) they deserve an ignominious defeat and retirement.

    • #2
    • September 12, 2015, at 6:38 PM PDT
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  3. Fredösphere Member
    Fredösphere Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    This is bad for Labour (but who cares?) and bad for the Tories (their moderates are free to contemn the base even more). The really interesting question is: who will scoop up the defectors?

    Can UKIP pull more of the ex-Labour vote than the Lib-Dems? Can it simultaneously attract the resulting disaffected Tory right as well? Can it become the opposition to the Tories? And in the process can it remain a party classical liberals can root for?

    • #3
    • September 12, 2015, at 6:40 PM PDT
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  4. Tenacious D Inactive

    So how long until Iran has more nukes than the UK?

    • #4
    • September 12, 2015, at 6:50 PM PDT
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  5. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    Steve C.: Maybe the members of the Labor Party have accepted that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. They got nowhere with the bozos they have. Might as well try new bozos.

    But it’s not new. It’s old. Corbyn is offering nothing that has not been offered before. He is an outright socialist, as I hope I made clear. Socialism failed electorally because it failed in government. If Britain remembers that, Corbyn will fail electorally. If it forgets, he will fail in government.

    The promise of radical “new” politics is ultimately a false promise, whoever the politician. The answer, as I said, is true leadership, but that doesn’t come from rage against the establishment. It comes from clear conviction, firm grounding in reality and fact, and good policy.

    If we say “the old ways are failing, let’s try something new” and then give little regard to what that new thing is, we are very likely to end up with something worse than the old ways. History is full of demagogues who tapped into genuine legitimate frustration and rode to power on a promise of change. Some simply fell short. Some proved dangerous. When a politician’s appeal is driven by anger and a desire for something new and his background and policies are dismissed as irrelevant (it’s about the Establishment! he fights!), it should alarm us.

    • #5
    • September 12, 2015, at 6:55 PM PDT
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  6. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    Fredösphere:This is bad for Labour (but who cares?) and bad for the Tories (their moderates are free to contemn the base even more). The really interesting question is: who will scoop up the defectors?

    Can UKIP pull more of the ex-Labour vote than the Lib-Dems? Can it simultaneously attract the resulting disaffected Tory right as well? Can it become the opposition to the Tories? And in the process can it remain a party classical liberals can root for?

    I don’t know. If the Tories are likewise paying attention to what is happening here, they should realize that this anti-establishment sentiment and dismissal of electoral consequences can cross the aisle — though they will perhaps also see that it is not necessarily conservative in its demands — and they are all the more desperate to keep Corbyn out. Cameron now has the advantage of a governing majority, which means he effectively has more power than an American president. If he needs to deliver more wins to his base, he can.

    The other interesting question is how the Labour Parliamentary Party works with Corbyn. It’s a bizarre situation the British system isn’t built to handle: the Party Leader does not have the confidence of his MPs. The Labour civil war is not over.

    • #6
    • September 12, 2015, at 7:06 PM PDT
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  7. Could Be Anyone Member

    I concur with your sentiment. Populism is more or less a left wing based concept as it posits that true leadership is only true leadership when it pleases the will of the people and acts as if it is doing what it commands of it. It always promises a utopia like world where everything was or will be right. At its foundation is not objective principles that always apply but merely relative will of the majority.

    As classical liberals we ought to resist such foolishness and realize the constraints of reality, even if we dislike it. Currently the House of Reps is fighting the Iran Deal by waiting till the President reveals every document related to the Iran Deal as prescribed by the Corker Bill. This could take forever assuming Barack doesn’t give the documents. So our support of the Republican Party isn’t wasted, but the results have not been perfect either.

    We should see Trump in that same light as Corbyn. They are mere men that rely on frustration to achieve power. I view it akin to Star Wars with Palpatine, he promises security and prosperity while destroying the “corrupt” and “ineffective” old order/republic (establishment) and replacing it with the “efficient and responsive” New Order/Empire (himself).

    He presents himself as being successful and outside of usual politics and that he will breath fresh air but categorically speaking no such air exists and politics is politics (of which he has been a long time influencer of).

    He is like the man that calls for anarchy against a system he does not like. The point isn’t to install anarchy but to install what he wants in the vacuum of anarchy. The fact is that all political parties in at least a two party system have vying centers of power. In the Republican Party you have the alleged “establishment” under Bush and McConnell and you have the more rightwing senators like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee and then you have the governor conservatives and then you have the populist Donald Trump. They each have some similarities and differences, Cruz supporters and Trump can get along in since both dislike Bush and are distrustful to a degree of the governor factions even though the Cruz supporters may dislike Trump’s history.

    The Democrats also have vying centers but there is no need to get into them. The point being as you said that their appeal is based on false premises, alleged clarity, and their conclusions are alleged to be true but logically speaking such cannot exist. Clarity may ease the feeling of being lost but you can easily give clear but wrong direction, as Trump and Corbyn do. People need to get used to the long run because every competition is long run and clarity shouldn’t be mistaken for truth.

    • #7
    • September 12, 2015, at 7:15 PM PDT
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  8. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    Oh, and this is fun. Donald Trump got trolled. He actually retweeted this:

    @HamishP95@realDonaldTrump My Dad is thinking of voting for the first time ever for you. pic.twitter.com/1u9qi8qUPc” Great.

    — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 12, 2015

     That’s actually a Labour nut of some kind who is having immense fun with this, and that picture of his “Dad” is… Jeremy Corbyn. 

    Obscure to most Americans, I know. But seeing he’s now the Leader of the Opposition of our closest ally – and that he basically wants to dump us – and that anyone paying any attention to world affairs has known this was coming for weeks – isn’t it something that maybe someone who wants to be President should be learning at least a little about? Enough not to fall for a silly Twitter prank?

    • #8
    • September 12, 2015, at 7:30 PM PDT
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  9. Dave Sussman Contributor

    England has Corbyn, America has Sanders. Ignore that eerie ghostly cackle… It’s just Lenin.

    • #9
    • September 12, 2015, at 7:51 PM PDT
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  10. Man With the Axe Member

    Are Americans so unserious that they would give executive power to a megalomaniac just because they like his style, because he “tells it like it is” or because he tweaks the noses of the establishment?

    Let’s ask the Venezuelans how well that works.

    • #10
    • September 12, 2015, at 8:44 PM PDT
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  11. Quake Voter Inactive

    Agree with David; the sad parallels are between Corbyn and Sanders: lifelong socialist politicians whose eccentricities and minor heresies are those of the leftest leftist who didn’t get the memo. Comparisons to Trump seem grossly unfair … to Corbyn. Did Corbyn advocate privatizing the NHS a few years ago and note how well private healthcare works in Singapore during the recent Labour leadership debates? Did Corbyn compliment William Hague as the greatest Foreign Secretary in recent British history? Was Corbyn a dues-paying Tory a few years ago? Has Corbyn recently proposed cutting taxes on upper-income earners?

    • #11
    • September 12, 2015, at 8:55 PM PDT
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  12. Franz Drumlin Member

    Quake Voter: Agree with David; the sad parallels are between Corbyn and Sanders: lifelong socialist politicians whose eccentricities and minor heresies are those of the leftest leftist who didn’t get the memo. Comparisons to Trump seem grossly unfair … to Corbyn. Did Corbyn advocate privatizing the NHS a few years ago and note how well private healthcare works in Singapore during the recent Labour leadership debates? Did Corbyn compliment William Hague as the greatest Foreign Secretary in recent British history? Was Corbyn a dues-paying Tory a few years ago? Has Corbyn recently proposed cutting taxes on upper-income earners?

    You get to the point, my friend. If Trump were as reliably conservative as Corbyn is a leftist I wouldn’t be quite so troubled by his commanding lead in the polls.

    • #12
    • September 12, 2015, at 9:32 PM PDT
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  13. J. D. Fitzpatrick Member
    J. D. Fitzpatrick Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    In ages like these, a war usually comes along to smack people upside the head and return them to reality.

    • #13
    • September 12, 2015, at 9:37 PM PDT
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  14. Z in MT Member

    It really is an interesting populist moment in the English speaking world. Too many people believe that the game is rigged. Populists of a leftist bent are convinced by the “inequality crusaders” that rich are getting ahead at the expense of the little guy. Populists of a conservative bent see their electoral victories in 2010 and 2014 as useless because of a political elite that barely even pays lip service anymore. In both cases, the issue is that a large fraction of the population on both sides of the political spectrum no longer trust our institutions.

    This is the direct result of the trends identified in Charles Murray’s Coming Apart. The political, academic, media, and business elites have lost touch with common everyday Americans and can no longer hold their trust.

    The conservative pundits like George Will, Mona Charen, and Charles Krauthammer don’t see it because they live in places like NoVA. The only pundits that do are the ones the live outside East Coast and West Coast enclaves. Mark Steyn who lives in NH gets it, VDH who farms in the Central Valley of CA gets it.

    • #14
    • September 12, 2015, at 9:44 PM PDT
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  15. Could Be Anyone Member

    @ David Sussman – I would argue that it’s Karl Marx. The sad thing is that the conflict will continue forever, there will always be those that are enthralled by the concept of man made utopia and will ignore whatever and do whatever they think is needed to accomplish it. The simplicity of socialism is probably it’s biggest factor in why some people love it.

    • #15
    • September 12, 2015, at 10:30 PM PDT
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  16. James Of England Moderator
    James Of England Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Leigh: But it’s not new. It’s old. Corbyn is offering nothing that has not been offered before. He is an outright socialist, as I hope I made clear. Socialism failed electorally because it failed in government. If Britain remembers that, Corbyn will fail electorally. If it forgets, he will fail in government.

    I think Corbyn goes further. Supporting calls to attack British troops, for instance, goes farther than Kinnock or Foot, the two previous left-most candidates in recent British history, and his affection for the IRA goes further, too.

    My sometime Green Party candidate and husband of an ex-Green Spokeswoman brother knows him a little and despairs of his hard line approaches. We haven’t seen Labour party splits like this since 1981, when the Social Democratic Party was formed by Labour splitters (it later joined with the Liberal Party to become the Liberal Democrats).

    Leigh: The promise of radical “new” politics is ultimately a false promise, whoever the politician. The answer, as I said, is true leadership, but that doesn’t come from rage against the establishment. It comes from clear conviction, firm grounding in reality and fact, and good policy.

    I don’t think that this is true. Unless it’s backed by a coup, radical new politics tend to shift the future of the country strongly in the direction opposed to the radical group. It’s how Nixon did as well as he did, how Thatcher did what she did. Wilson was unusual in really proclaiming his radicalism loudly when he was in government, which allowed Harding and Coolidge to do what they did.

    The last UK election results were terrifying. The left stopped splitting its vote; they lost, and that matters for five years, but they left a real chance that they’d be able to consistently win in the future with even mediocre campaigns; Thatcher never won majorities, but she didn’t have to because of the splits. With the Liberal Democrats gone, we’d never have seen her like again. Thankfully, there appears to be every chance that Corbyn has either resurrected them or will cause another split in the Labour Party to replace them. If that happened, he may have set Britain on a path to multiple decades of prosperity and decency, just as would happen if we got the Green Party in the US to the level where it received public funding, or the opposite of what would happen if the LP gets it.

    • #16
    • September 12, 2015, at 11:29 PM PDT
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  17. Quake Voter Inactive

    Maybe I am unfairly picking sour cherries here, but the point seems to be that Bobby Jindal, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Scott Walker and Carly Fiorina are part of a remote elite, and Mona Charen, George Will and Charles Krauthammer (and John Podhoretz and Jonah Goldberg no doubt) are privileged and enclaved.

    While Donald Trump is Pappy O’Daniel!

    By the way, wasn’t Dr. Murray’s chief lament in Coming Apart that accomplished, intelligent, culturally refined and fundamentally decent people were too timid to preach what they practice?

    Ask Dr. Murray who “gets it”: Mona Charen or Donald Trump?

    • #17
    • September 12, 2015, at 11:29 PM PDT
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  18. jetstream Inactive

    Steve C.:This situation requires a really stupid and futile gesture…

    Maybe the members of the Labor Party have accepted that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. They got nowhere with the bozos they have. Might as well try new bozos. Think about how frustrated and irritated the average American voter has become. Every 2 years the message is, elect Republicans to stop the President. The result: the alleged smart leaders of the GOP stumble from failure to failure. If they are having us on with “failure theater” they deserve Trump. If they are incapable of matching promises with capability (to me that’s the real problem: over promising and under delivering) they deserve an ignominious defeat and retirement.

    Are you sure it was over promising and not bait and switch?

    • #18
    • September 13, 2015, at 4:06 AM PDT
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  19. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    James Of England: I don’t think that this is true. Unless it’s backed by a coup, radical new politics tend to shift the future of the country strongly in the direction opposed to the radical group. It’s how Nixon did as well as he did, how Thatcher did what she did.

    I don’t see where we disagree. I said that, too — he’ll almost certainly lose. He’s offering his followers something he will never be able to deliver. Most likely, that’s because Blair is right and the nation as a whole has no interest in his politics. If on the chance he does take power (and I’ll completely grant your point about him being even worse than Foot and Kinnock), his policies will fail to deliver their promise.

    I’ve sort of tried to see Corbyn’s inevitable disaster from the perspective of a Labour voter — which of course is hard for this conservative to do. But from that angle, if Corbyn leads to extended conservative dominance, yesterday will have been an utter disaster, and not the bright new dawn of politics he promised.

    • #19
    • September 13, 2015, at 4:31 AM PDT
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  20. Profile Photo Member

    Trump is a clown.

    In better national circumstances no one- no one, not even Trump himself, I think- would take the idea of a presidential run by him seriously. Plainly if he’d had some longstanding ambition to be president he’d have behaved more like Mitt Romney.

    But he didn’t, and we aren’t in good national circumstances. It is astonishing to me that (for example) merely by voicing what should have long been the openly stated position of the Republican party about immigration and the border Trump has been able to knock the GOP presidential campaign completely off the rails. It is even more astonishing that his endless series of gaffes hasn’t wrecked his campaign- assuming that they’re actually gaffes, and not carefully chosen acts of social engineering.

    In any case I take the success of Trump as a sign that the GOP establishment is terribly weak and unpopular. If the leadership was aligned with the base this never could have happened.

    But it isn’t. Complain about him all you want, but it seems like he has more political skill in a few out-of-place hairs on his head than the entire witless GOP establishment. Which has managed, I note, to lose rather thoroughly to one of the worst individuals ever to occupy the White House, and doesn’t even seem to notice.

    • #20
    • September 13, 2015, at 4:37 AM PDT
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  21. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    Quake Voter:Agree with David; the sad parallels are between Corbyn and Sanders: lifelong socialist politicians whose eccentricities and minor heresies are those of the leftest leftist who didn’t get the memo. Comparisons to Trump seem grossly unfair … to Corbyn. Did Corbyn advocate privatizing the NHS a few years ago and note how well private healthcare works in Singapore during the recent Labour leadership debates? Did Corbyn compliment William Hague as the greatest Foreign Secretary in recent British history? Was Corbyn a dues-paying Tory a few years ago? Has Corbyn recently proposed cutting taxes on upper-income earners?

    Truly funny and all good points.

    But I’m not making a policy comparison — only noting a striking, disturbing parallel in the political phenomenon. (I did neglect to bring Sanders into that discussion. He is of course relevant; it’s bipartisan here too.)

    Read that first article I linked, the one by a Corbyn supporter. I find it eerily reminiscent of arguments I’ve seen for Trump. The Party is a disaster and out-of-touch (true). Just as Trump supporters do with some of his bigger flip-flops, she acknowledges his worst connections — but it doesn’t matter, because the rest of the party are worthless. Her arguments against Blair’s points are not arguments, they’re an emotional reaction to elitist condescension.

    We won’t nominate a Red — but the parallels between the passions should give us pause and cause us to think well what we’re about.

    • #21
    • September 13, 2015, at 4:43 AM PDT
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  22. ctlaw Coolidge

    James,

    In addition to the leftist split, is there the possibility of a Tory/UKIP merger?

    If the referendum is decisive either way, what purpose does UKIP serve?

    • #22
    • September 13, 2015, at 4:45 AM PDT
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  23. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    Z in MT: Too many people believe that the game is rigged.. Populists of a conservative bent see their electoral victories in 2010 and 2014 as useless because of a political elite that barely even pays lip service anymore. In both cases, the issue is that a large fraction of the population on both sides of the political spectrum no longer trust our institutions.

    I agree.

    But there’s a heavy responsibility for those populists to act wisely, not with blind passionate fury. The desire to shake up politics at any cost can destroy a movement, or a country. The failure of the political elite has sparked the reaction, but the reaction is dangerous. And above all, we need to realize that those trying to take advantage of that — Corbyn, Sanders, Trump — are power-seekers too, and must be considered as such. We cannot suspend the things we once thought were important in order to punish the elite — because those things are still important.

    Corbyn’s supporters followed their impulses. They will probably just lose, and what will they have accomplished? If not they will experience Corbyn’s actual policies, the things they thought mattered less than their hatred of Blair and the Labour Establishment.

    Those things don’t matter less.

    Being conservative, I can hardly say what Labour should have done. I can see what we need to do: to choose wisely one of those leaders from 2010 or 2014 who has stood on principle.

    • #23
    • September 13, 2015, at 4:51 AM PDT
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  24. Deep State Doc Member

    The disenchantment that produced Corbyn is real, it transcends parties, and it exists on our side of the Atlantic. Jeremy Corbyn and Donald Trump are very different manifestations of the same phenomenon: a bitter disillusionment with established politics, a passionate rejection of old leadership, an enthusiastic embrace of something that seems new in pursuit of change

    Spot on. Corbyn’s election assures conservative political hegemony and cedes any effective leftist leadership to moderate Tories. We could easily end up in the same position with an unwise but cathartic selection for the GOP nomination and be left with Hillary as the most electable “conservative” on the ballot.

    • #24
    • September 13, 2015, at 5:05 AM PDT
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  25. ctlaw Coolidge

    Z in MT: This is the direct result of the trends identified in Charles Murray’s Coming Apart. The political, academic, media, and business elites have lost touch with common everyday Americans and can no longer hold their trust. The conservative pundits like George Will, Mona Charen, and Charles Krauthammer don’t see it because they live in places like NoVA. The only pundits that do are the ones the live outside East Coast and West Coast enclaves. Mark Steyn who lives in NH gets it, VDH who farms in the Central Valley of CA gets it.

    Perhaps 20 years ago the Belmonters could have been operating in ignorance of illegal immigration and the like. Today, that’s impossible. It’s intentional duplicity or self-delusion.

    Did Murray break things down beyond Belmont and Fishtown? In distinction to the Fishtown where VDH lives there is a large but diminishing rural white area where people are not daily subject to marauding holders of Obama phones. They can be misled into voting for Dems. We’re not merely talking all-white rural Fishtowns a la Appalachian stereotypes. There are still many (although diminishing) rural middle class areas.

    Steyn lives in such a place. I believe his town went more than 3:1 for Obama over Romney. He doesn’t “get it” because he lives there, but despite living there.

    • #25
    • September 13, 2015, at 5:23 AM PDT
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  26. Larry3435 Member

    Obama threw the bust of Winston Churchill out of the Oval Office. Now, at last, Corbyn gives him a British politician whose image he can proudly display on his desk.

    • #26
    • September 13, 2015, at 6:10 AM PDT
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  27. Leigh Member
    Leigh

    One other point on Corbyn. The leadership didn’t “get” it. Tony Blair himself admits this:

     I confess they’re right. I don’t get it, but I’m trying hard, and I read with care Rosie Fletcher’s passionate piece in praise of Jeremy Corbyn in last week’s Observer.

    That’s the piece I referenced above. Blair doesn’t “get” it. But he does “get” certain things Corbyn and his supporters do not. He understand the country as a whole better than they do. He understands some things about winning elections — he did rather spectacularly well at it, not so very long ago. He understands to some degree that those who do not learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat it, and he understands that his party is rushing headlong down that path.

    He gets these things only to a certain extent, of course — he’s a liberal. But he has a greater attachment to reality — especially political reality — than the movement that swept his party. Even though he’s “out-of-touch,” even though he doesn’t get it. Blair is — for not quite the only time — right.

    • #27
    • September 13, 2015, at 6:15 AM PDT
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  28. Gazpacho Grande' Coolidge

    Leigh:

    But there’s a heavy responsibility for those populists to act wisely, not with blind passionate fury. The desire to shake up politics at any cost can destroy a movement, or a country. The failure of the political elite has sparked the reaction, but the reaction is dangerous. And above all, we need to realize that those trying to take advantage of that — Corbyn, Sanders, Trump — are power-seekers too, and must be considered as such. We cannot suspend the things we once thought were important in order to punish the elite — because those things are still important.

    I’m really happy about the idea about “shaking up” politics, because it hasn’t been shaken in a long, long time. The Republican party can and should be shaken up, or even destroyed, considering its inherent nature to roll over and whiz itself anytime Barry walks in the room and wants to, oh, say, give Iran the bomb.

    Those people do not lead us. They lead themselves back into their jobs in the next election. For the most part that’s all they care about.

    Oh, and the country isn’t going to be destroyed because a political movement shakes things up – the country doesn’t live in DC, no matter what the majority of the people there think. When the govt “shut down”, did chaos reign in the streets? No. The country is not Congress, the Supremes, or the Presidency.

    • #28
    • September 13, 2015, at 6:28 AM PDT
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  29. Skarv Coolidge
    Skarv Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Post of the week in my opinion!

    • #29
    • September 13, 2015, at 6:39 AM PDT
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  30. JCM Member
    JCM

    I agree with Xennady #20.
    I would think that pundits such as Mona, who I love, would say less about the symptom and more about the disease. Or maybe they think the Republican party at the federal level is in fine health, that, all things considered, it’s doing quite well. I think it actually has some form of sclerosis, but I’m not a doctor, nor a pundit.

    • #30
    • September 13, 2015, at 7:43 AM PDT
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