By Craig Murray, former British ambassador to Uzbekistan and Rector (i.e. president) of the University of Dundee. Craigmurray.org.uk.
The priority now of the political “elite” is to ensure voters never again get the chance to make a choice the political class do not want. Jeremy Corbyn is the thing the political class want least.
Do you remember when 184 Labour MPs refused to vote against the Tory benefit cuts that ruined lives and caused suicides? They did so on the grounds that their focus groups showed the public wanted benefit cuts, and so it would be wrong to oppose the Tory Welfare Reform and Work Bill.
Well, I can promise you that the 172 Labour MPs who voted to no-confidence Corbyn are exactly the same people who would not oppose welfare cuts. The net effect of the Corbyn year has been that 12 Labour MPs have decided that they have a purpose in politics which is not just personal gain. The vast majority would vote to push the unemployed off a cliff if they thought it would get them career advancement. Or adapt the John Mann anti-immigrant agenda.
Make no mistake. If Corbyn is deposed, the people of England and Wales will be back to having a choice between two colours of Tory. Labour will go full on anti welfare, anti immigrant and pro-nuclear weapon. Because Jon Cruddas will tell them that is what will get them elected.
In the UK, 78% of people do not know the name of their MP. With Labour MPs it was 82%. The idea that they have a “personal mandate” is rubbish. People vote for the party. In Blackburn I stood as an Independent against Jack Straw and all the main parties, and got 5% of the vote. Not one of those 172 Labour Party MPs would get 5% if they stood as an Independent.
The SNP has mandatory reselection for every MP and MSP for every election. It is a fundamental democratic need. The mainstream media are now trying to generate horror at the idea that the Labour MPs should be accountable to their local members, in whose name they wish to stand again. It is a ridiculous argument that people who have behaved like Simon Danczuk should have the right to represent the Labour Party for life. Yet it is the democratic alternative which the media are seeking to demonise.