By Conrad Landin in Britain:
BLAIR: Tears of a Dodo
Monday 31st August 2015
Warmonger ex-PM’s third bid to derail Corbyn meets a chorus of contempt
TONY BLAIR railed against Jeremy Corbyn yesterday for “telling it like it is” — but the warmongering has-been was abruptly derided as having “nothing useful to say.”
Hoping a Jabberwocky-esque tirade in a Sunday newspaper would do better than his two previous attempts, the former prime minister told voters to reject the “Alice in Wonderland” appeal of Labour’s left-wing leadership frontrunner.
But in chastising Mr Corbyn’s clear vision while failing to name anything positive about his rivals, Mr Blair inadvertently took on the role of Lewis Caroll’s dodo — whose “caucus race” in the famous novel is designed to ensure there is no winner at all.
Fire Brigades Union general secretary Matt Wrack, who is supporting Mr Corbyn, suggested the former PM might be better suited to the “circles of hell” than the tale of a determined dreamer talking truth to paper-thin politicians.
“Blair doesn’t like Alice in Wonderland?” he quipped. “Perhaps Dante’s Inferno was more his style?”
Mr Blair moaned in the Observer: “The explanation for this parallel reality is something to do with people feeling empowered by their ability through it, to ‘fight back’ against ‘the system,’ the traditional ways of thinking about politics with all its compromises, hard decisions and gradual increments.
“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.
“The Labour Party is now effectively a changed political party over the space of three months.”
Centrist rival Andy Burnham echoed his former boss yesterday, claiming to “understand” the rise of Mr Corbyn in contrast to Mr Blair, but adding Labour would have “lost the plot” if it refused to listen to the fake-tanned fibber.
Unite political director Jennie Formby however hit back yesterday on social media site Twitter. She said: “Sorry Andy Burnham, I totally disagree that neoliberal multi-millionaire warmonger Blair has anything useful to say.”
Mr Blair’s rant went so far as to compare the rise of Mr Corbyn and socialist US presidential candidate Bernie Sanders with that of fascist Marine Le Pen in France.
He complained: “Anyone listening? Nope. In fact, the opposite. It actually makes them more likely to support him.
“So the question is: what to do? Do we go full frontal and take it on or do we try to build a bridge between the two realities? I don’t know.”
Mr Corbyn is now the bookmakers’ solid favourite to win the leadership on September 12.
But right-wing MPs have pledged to kick off a Mad Hatter’s tea party if they judge him to have under-performed by the end of next year.
Sources told the Sunday People they would seek to make a “deal” with Mr Corbyn whereby radical policies would only be approved with the consent of the shadow cabinet, and they could seek to depose the leftwinger after just 18 months.
But the former Middle East peace envoy surprised his critics in taking a trip through the looking glass — and acknowledging that his previous intervention had spectacularly backfired.
TORIES and Labour rightwingers were accused of “bankrupt politics” yesterday after they attempted to smear Jeremy Corbyn by suggesting he sympathised with Osama bin Laden: here.
By Michael Meacher in Britain:
Blair is living in a state of deluded denial
Tuesday 1st August 2015
Blair describes his opponents as trapped ‘in their own hermetically sealed bubble,’ when this applies exactly to himself, writes MICHAEL MEACHER
THERE never was a truer example of “when you’re in a hole, stop digging.”
Tony Blair’s article in the Observer at the weekend was a gift to his opponents, but it did even more damage to himself.
He revealed himself as increasingly deserted by even his previous closest followers — an utterly broken man watching everything he stood for swept away before his eyes.
He has gone from opposition to delusion, from hysteria to denial.
But what is perhaps most disturbing of all is that he can’t, as he himself candidly admits, understand why the Corbyn earthquake is happening.
He just blankly refuses to acknowledge the passionate resentment which he and New Labour created by laying the foundations for the financial crash of 2008-9 and making the squeezed middle and brutally punished poor pay for it, by taking Britain without any constitutional approval into an illegal war with Iraq, by introducing into politics the hated regime of spin and manipulation, by indulging now his squalid lust for money-making and by clearly having no more overriding desire than to strut the world with George W Bush.
Blair describes his opponents as trapped “in their own hermetically sealed bubble,” when that applies exactly to himself.
If what he says were really true, why has the Labour [members and registered supporters] electorate swelled to over 600,000 — 50 per cent larger than he managed even at the height of his pomp when so many were glad to be rid of the Tories on May 1 1997?
Why is he so unfeeling and unapologetic about aligning New Labour alongside the Tories in pursuit of austerity from 2010 onwards, especially since George Osborne’s policy — to shrink the state — has been so dramatically unsuccessful in reducing the deficit?
Why did he urge the Blairites to support the government’s welfare Bill which opposed every tenet of the real Labour Party?
Why did he push for privatisation of the NHS and other public services?
Why did his acolyte Peter Mandelson say: “New Labour is intensely relaxed at people becoming filthy rich,” then prove it by letting inequality balloon to even higher heights than under Thatcher?
So after doing all those things, how does Blair expect Labour members and the country to treat him?
After a 20-year temporary hijacking of the party, taking it down a route utterly alien to its founders in order to ingratiate himself with corporate and financial leaders on their terms, how can he imagine that anyone wants him back? He has a lot to learn. Less egoism, more humility.
• Michael Meacher is Labour MP for Oldham West and Royton. For more of his writing visit www.michaelmeacher.info/weblog.
The entire full-time staff of the Labour Party, along with constituency party branches and university Labour Clubs, is now exclusively occupied in investigating those who have paid £3 to become Labour supporters to vote in the leadership contest. The declared purpose is to ensure that all who have signed up subscribe loyally to the aims of the party. The real aim is to exclude from membership as many as possible of those who intend to vote for Corbyn: here.
ROGER BAGLEY surveys the life of a former Labour chancellor who was a thorn in the side of the party left – yet sided with them when it came to Blair’s war crimes. DENIS HEALEY was a tough bruiser of a politician who fought against the left in the Labour Party but ended up a critic of Tony Blair: here.