13 September 2008

Desperate Times Call For Blair?

I knew it would happen sooner or...
later. Someone in the labour party calling for the return of Blair. This article on LabourHome may seem laughable but how many in the party who wanted Blair to go a year ago, now wish he hadn't. Quite a lot would be my guess.

Unlike Polly Toynbee, I was opposed to Brown being leader right from the start. It seemed pretty obvious to me he was going to be an electoral disaster. What I didn't quite realise was how poor a decision maker he would prove to be.

The public are generous souls and they gave Brown a window of opportunity that a stronger leader would have took, but he bottled the election that never was and his reputation will never recover.

If Labour are to stand any chance in 2010, it will be without Brown at the helm. Thankfully a few brave MPs are putting their head above the parapet (hopefully this will escalate) and facing Brown's bullyboy henchmen and now the commentariat seem pretty united in thinking Brown must go (even those who praised him as a saviour a year ago).

Of course it will take more than a change of leader to save Labour from electoral destruction, but without it there is no chance. The whole party has a rotten spine or to be more accurate lack of spine running right through the middle of it. Those decent few who have not left the party are now outnumbered by charlatans and inept head nodders. It is time to take this party back from these corrupt few. The party has been hollowed out just as it was in the late sixties, but the membership actually has more power than then - at least now they can choose the leader, if only MPs give them that oportunity and a decent range of candidates. One can only hope!

1 comment:

  1. Brown is pretty useless and, like you, I thought that he was going to be no good well before he became leader. But you have no alternative. The party will not tolerate another coronation, so there will have to be a leadership campaign and that means a real debate about policy. Blair effectively suppressed policy debate for 11 years so it is all going to come out now. The party will go to war for a few weeks, which will drive its polls even lower, and then it will elect a leader who will try to heal the divisions made manifest by the leadership contest. Then he will try to restore public confidence.

    Do you really think a new leader can do all that in 18 months?

    The only hope for you is that in changing leader you might get a short honeymoon period in which you could hold an election. But it's a big risk. The electorate might just as well perceive it as an utterly cynical manoeuvre and it does you no good at all. This is why the bulk of Labour MPs are being so diliatory over Brown. They KNOW that they really don't have a choice this late in the electoral cycle.

    What surprises me is that anyone is surprised by this. Strong autocratic leaders inevitably screw up their party for the next generation or two. Thatcher did it for the Tories. I suspect that the Tories might have lost the 1992 election were it not for the Gulf War, which kept them together. But after the 1992 election they had five years in which to disintegrate as a party in an orgy of recrimination and bitterness. The existence of Thatcher suppressed the development of nw competent leaders, just as the Blair/Brown axis has done in Labour. Who are the likely successors to Brown? Second raters like Milliband, Straw, Balla, Alan Johnson. It's not a pretty picture is it.

    All in all, I think you are better off as you are. Pray for Cameron doing soemthing really stupid. It's your only hope.

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