• Labour

    Jeremy Corbyn isn’t a “nice guy” – he’s an apologist for racists and bigots.

    This is a guest post by James Hamblin Imagine, for a moment, that David Cameron had repeated the ancient antisemitic myth known as the “blood libel”, the idea that Jews murder non-Jewish children in order to use their blood for ritual purposes. Or what if he had said that Jews were “the chief financiers of the slave trade”. What would be the reaction? At a minimum he would be universally shunned, shamed and discredited. If he were still Prime Minister, he’d have been hounded out of office. Certainly the only people who would share platforms with him after that would be people who either agreed with his sentiment or were…

  • Labour

    Shami Chakrabarti is Disappointed

    The Mail picked up on the story that Shami Chakrabarti had described Moazzam Begg as “a wonderful advocate he is for human rights and in particular for human liberty“. This is her response: I have always spoken against anti-Semitism and all forms of racism. I long campaigned for the release of Mr Begg and all other detainees from Guantanamo Bay. I have never spoken about Israel-Palestine. These three facts are completely consistent and I am disappointed that anyone should attempt to suggest otherwise.’ The point is not that these positions are inconsistent. It is that she is has very poor judgement. That poor judgement manifested itself in praise for a…

  • Anti Muslim Bigotry,  antisemitism,  Labour

    Shami Chakrabarti praised Moazzam Begg as “a wonderful advocate for human rights and in particular for human liberty”

    Shami Chakrabarti, who has recently joined the Labour Party, is the Chair of its Independent Inquiry into Antisemitism. The scope of the Inquiry has been expanded to include other forms of racism, and Islamophobia. It is perfectly possible to oppose the actions or political beliefs of Zionist organisations and Israeli politicians, or the conduct of the Israeli Government without resorting to conspiracism and bigotry. However, when the line is crossed, and those criticisms become tinged with antisemitism, it is right that action be taken. The same is true of criticism of Islamist organisations, politicians, and Muslim-majority countries. It would be shocking to discover that a Labour councillor or activist were…

  • Labour

    Sadiq Khan and Denry Machin

    If Sadiq Khan was a fictional character, I’d suspect his creator had used Arnold Bennett’s The Card (1911) for inspiration. Bennett’s hero, the engaging opportunist Denry Machin, was born in humble circumstances, and his mother worked as a seamstress – as did Sadiq’s.   Sadiq’s past behaviour (as widely documented here and elsewhere) is open to some question. Denry begins his career by taking advantage of a master’s absence to  alter the marks on his exam results, thus winning a scholarship to a superior Endowed School, and never stops being a bit of a chancer.  His entrepreneurial flair enables him to rise to prosperity via rent collecting, journalism, tourist boat…

  • Labour,  UK Politics

    Corbyn’s (literal) lack of backing

    I’m no expert on British politics, but would I be correct in assuming that this photo tells us a lot about about the utter disaster that is Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour party? I suppose it’s reassuring that so many Labour MPs want nothing to do with him– that the entire party hasn’t gone mad. Can he really remain as leader until the next election? Something’s got to give, hasn’t it?

  • Labour

    A Corbyn victory would betray Labour’s heritage

    The possibility that Jeremy Corbyn– who never misses an opportunity to express “solidarity” with repressive and undemocratic regimes of the Left– could actually end up as the leader of the UK Labour party ought to remind anyone with a sense of history how this would betray the party’s great anti-totalitarian heritage. Can you imagine Corbyn saying, as Aneurin Bevan, then the leader of the Labour party Left, said in 1951: “The Communist party is the sworn inveterate enemy of the socialist and democratic parties”? Or can you imagine him reacting to Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev as Labour party leaders did during his visit to the UK in 1955 (from a…

  • Labour

    Mugged by Labour

    So, Ed Miliband’s team have sparked “iMUGration-gate”. Some of Labour’s most high-profile MPs aren’t impressed, and for good reason. All modern countries have immigration controls and defend their borders. If ever a point was moot, it was this one. It is disappointing then that Labour have stooped to what amounts to obvious dog-whistle politics on this issue rather than simply explaining that it is in fact not controversial that a modern country – particularly social democratic welfare states – have a compelling interest in controlling their borders. Show me a state without border control and I’ll show you a failed state. Clearly Ed M is keen to distance New-Old Labour…

  • Islamism,  Labour

    Yes he can, can’t he?

    Good grief. Is Ed Miliband crowd-sourcing his speech writing to people taking the day off from brain-farting hippy platitudes on Comment is Free? Here’s a sample of his column for The Independent which leaves one with the feeling he doesn’t entirely understand who these Isis chaps are. If he did, he wouldn’t be peddling even softer versions of the anti-extremism strategies supported throughout the last decade as Left/Liberal articles of faith but which (surprisingly) failed, and failed spectacularly. Here is a sample of thinking so wooly and so muddy that it resembles the intellectual equivalent of a football jumper left in the park after a wet Sunday morning kickabout. Laughably,…

  • Labour,  Labour Party

    Labour’s “EDL Problem”

    Imagine the furore if it turned out that a local Conservative Association had selected, as its candidate for the upcoming General Election, a man who had been an active and senior member of the EDL or BNP. Imagine that this man also had a record of saying outrageous things about various matters of public concern; things that clearly marked him out as a dodgy extremist? That Tory candidate would be an ex-Tory candidate – and probably also an ex-member of the Tory Party – sooner than you could blink. This is not so on the Left in general, when it comes to our own lunatic fringe. It is not so…

  • Humanitarian Intervention,  Labour

    Will Labour discuss humanitarian intervention?

    If I were British, I would almost certainly be a member of the Labour party– not just because I mostly agree with its social and economic policies (although I probably lean slightly to the party’s right) but because of its proud history of standing for genuine democratic socialism and social democracy as opposed to Communism. I especially like this account of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev’s visit to Britain in 1955 (from a book called The Fifties by Peter Lewis): Mr K, as the headlines called him, was pleasantly enough impressed by the hospitality of [Conservative Prime Minister Anthony] Eden’s dacha, Chequers, by tea with the Queen, and by learning from…