By William Hallowell | Editor
"Jeremy Corbyn - Caricature" by Donkey Hotey
Now that the former Labour leader’s place in British politics has been consigned to history, what is left of his legacy?
Die-hard Corbynites – in the Commons and the public alike – still push Labour’s incumbent leader, Sir Keir Starmer, to reinstate the now disgraced has-been. Particularly, Corbyn’s closest allies and prominent members of his would-be government, Diane Abbot and John McDonnell, are doing as much as possible to create further division in Starmer’s already divided party. In their own minds, they are defending a man who they see as wronged by the media, the government, and the public. In the minds of the rest of the us, we see an opposition to democracy, and like Corbyn, a desperate attempt to cling onto their chance of power, because divisive figures such as these two have no place in a centre-left shadow cabinet. They say Corbyn is a victim of a ‘character assassination’ as if there is still a fight to be won, or a cause to depose Starmer and replace him the former leader, glorified by those who could not bear to put their party’s dark days behind them.
Most Labour affiliates want to move on – if they want a chance of defeating the Conservatives in the next election they must, but currently they are begging for forgiveness. Much like the Republican Party with Trump, the majority are leaving their former leader to fight what will only be his undoing. 2019 Labour voters are acting like the henchmen of the school bully once he has been caught and punished, as if they are innocent and falsely led; but as the party stands now, the remnants of the ‘best Prime Minister we never had’ are seeking as much division as possible. These Corbynite politicians don’t care for the people or the party. They care for themselves and their own attempt to increase their power, which will only happen under a Corbynist regime. They are doing Boris’ job for him.
If these constant attacks on Starmer continue, the party will fall. Whilst also dealing with Corbynite rebels, Starmer is battling the unions, – who also support Corbyn – leadership challenge threats from those such as Ian Lavery and grieving party members, 57,000 of which have left since Starmer took the reins. The way some of these people are behaving is embarrassing. They act as if they are mourning the loss of an idol or hero. Of course, in an age where our leaders showed strength by prowess in battle, Corbyn would have been hung, drawn and quartered, and his head placed on a spike on Tower Bridge – and suitably so.
Corbyn fancied himself as a twenty first century Macbeth – a legend in his own mind. But as all leaders are, Macbeth and Corbyn were deposed, because he couldn’t be dignified. He couldn’t resign when it would have been respectable. Had he announced his leadership departure after election defeat, that would have been the statesman-like response, but no. Corbyn never considered this. Instead, he decided to painfully drag out his self-inflicted defeat, damaging himself and the party alike. If he actually had any thought for the ‘party of the many, not the few’ he would have peacefully resigned.
Instead, he eventually gave way to a party leadership election – but even then, he couldn’t bring himself to be dignified. If I were in his position, I would have resigned leadership peacefully and given way to my seat. As David Cameron once compared Corbyn, the remains of Corbynism in British politics are personified by Monty Python’s Black Knight. He’s had his arms cut off. He’s had his legs cut off. Yet, he does not accept defeat. “Alright, we’ll call it a draw.”
Essentially, Corbyn’s legacy is nothing. He did absolutely nothing for British politics, and still he is treated as a great leader. Trump and Corbyn are so opposite in ideology, but so similar in character. Neither are willing to accept defeat, and even with Corbyn’s permanent suspension from the party – meaning he now sits as an Independent MP – he has no power and little support.