The Corbyn machine keeps going, and it seems he has taken an almost unassailable lead in the recent YouGov polls. The other candidates have been soporific to the point that just the mention of their names makes me want to go for a nap. Andy ‘i like football’ Burnham, Yvette ‘I’m always serious’ Cooper, and Liz ‘ I am a striver’ Kendall have all come up woefully short to lead in both ideas and charisma to lead an effective opposition party which is in desperate need of revitalisation. To cry about Jeremy not being able to lead a party to victory is not enough, the strategy has failed as it rests upon the assumption that the Corbynites care about the election prospects or look at polls without thinking the 35% who don’t vote will come flocking to the socialist cause.
Kendall has an excuse, she’s a new MP who has risen through the ranks very quickly. Her plans on education are by far the best of any of the other candidates, her plan will seek to address the startling unfairness which plagues our system. Something which the other candidates haven’t addressed, either they don’t know about it, or it doesn’t make for sexy policy so aren’t talking about it. This issue should be at the front and centre of her campaign, how can Britain become more prosperous, and how can people ‘get on in life’ without a prospect of a fair opportunity to make the best of what they have? Why isn’t Kendall going after Corbyn’s monumental waste of £10 billion on eradicating tuition fees, rather than focusing on the much harder but much more necessary reformation of preschool and early schooling. Why are too many Kendall supporters allowing her to be described as the Tory light candidate when she is the real progressive.
On Tax Corbyn is also weak, he talks about ‘people paying a bit more’ tax for better public services without ever specifying exactly how much tax that means. Why not force an answer from him on income tax? Given that he wants to buy back the railways, create a national education service, and start a mass nationalisation process then this a central pillar of his strategy and he will need to collect a lot of tax. Even his nationalisation fetish itself needs to be challenged. The railways are a good example, buying them back would be hideously expensive in the short-term and would reap little to no gains in the long-term. Why are the candidates either pandering to him? (like Burnham) or not getting stuck in to why his plans are a bad idea? (Like John Mcternan).
On Foreign Policy he’s extremely vulnerable. He seemed amenable to the idea of appearing at a conference with an Assad apologist whose claims that the Syrian gas attacks were faked by the opposition. He also seems to think we should start respecting other nations in the world. This statement is in of itself good, the problem comes when it’s stated on Russia Today the Putin broadcasting machine.If Mr Corbyn wants us to have better relations with Russia that certainly needs questioning, and if he thinks Russia Today broadcasting is not biased as he claimed over Libya then that’s also slightly worrying. He also believes not renewing Trident will give us a chance to reinvest in industry, infrastructure, and innovation, even the most cursory glance shows that by cutting trident you save a couple of billion pounds a year at most. Then you add in the withdrawal from NATO which deserves an article of its own for abandoning a military alliance which adds protection, power, and logistics for operations. His arguments on ISIS seem to ignore that the organisation has become one which is financially self sufficient, indeed the isolationist perspective of ignoring conflicts has created the nightmare of Syria today.
The question i have to ask is why is more not being done by going after him? He’s weak on a great number of areas and the only time he has been questioned on an uncomfortable subject he lost his temper on channel 4. There is a month to go until the ballots and with Corbyn surging ahead there needs to be a period where we scrutinise Mr Corbyn and his policies. Question his chairmanship of the stop the war campaign group. His policy of nationalisation and his sweeping plans for big projects without costing them out needs to be vocally challenged and challenged a lot. This isn’t a debating society. Yes we still need to talk about electability as Tony Blair has tonight, but i have come to realise that is no longer enough.
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