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The perpetual crisis of Labor: why nothing can save the British left?

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Kuldeep Singh
Kuldeep is a Journalist and Writer at Revyuh.com. He writes about topics such as Apps, how to, tips and tricks, social network and covers the latest story from the ground. He stands in front of and behind the camera, creates creative product images and much more. Always ready to review new products. Email: kuldeep (at) revyuh (dot) com

Just a year after becoming the most popular opposition leader, Starmer could now be forced to resign. Labor is going through a deep crisis that is moving it further and further away from power. The decline of social democratic parties

There are three basic rules for any opposition leader. The first, not to make any serious mistakes in the first interventions, during the little honeymoon that everyone enjoys after being elected. The second, not to screw up during the general election campaign. Even if they are not won, a worthy campaign can guarantee the position. The third, do not commit anything stupid in the long period that elapses between the first and second rule.

British Labor leader Keir Starmer embroidered the first pattern. No one doubts that. After being elected in April 2020, in the midst of the pandemic, his calm and elegant style, with quasi-forensic examinations in the sessions of the Government control, left the ‘premier’ Boris Johnson completely unsettled. He became the most popular opposition leader since Tony Blair in the 1990s. What’s more, the author of the successful ‘Bridget Jones’s Diary’ even had to deny that the character of the handsome lawyer Mark Darcy (played in the movies by Colin Firth) was inspired by him.

But just a year later, his position is on the line and everyone is taking it for granted that Labor will lose the next election for the fifth time in a rowThey are scheduled for 2024, but, seeing that the wind is blowing in his favor, Johnson could advance them a year to guarantee himself an absolute majority again. Despite the fact that the ‘Tories’ have been in power for eleven years, it is as if the current tenant of Downing Street has rejuvenated them.

The problem with Starmer is that he has violated the third golden rule. His leadership is not at stake for failing May’s local elections or losing the Hartlepool district, an iconic Red Wall stronghold in northern England that Labor has held since 1974. What has really jeopardized his position within the party is his wrong decision to immediately want to carry out a restructuring of his ‘shadow cabinet’ without weighing the consequences.

Intestate struggles

“Labor reaped the worst results in the last generals since 1935. It was clear that Starmer had it complicated. But after the results of these last venues and what happened with Hartlepool, it was necessary to reflect and reconsider. Trying to change the team was very stupid. Among other things, because he did not take into account that there are others more popular than him,” a source from the Labor environment assures El Confidential.

Starmer underestimated her number two, Angela Rayner, and the only reason she aborted her plans was that she was warned that she might respond with a ‘coup’ to overthrow him, as she had enough support to stand up to him.

Since being elected 1st and 2nd Labor, Starmer and Rayner have formed one of the strangest couples in Westminster. He (58 years old), a renowned human rights lawyer, educated in the select Oxford, always greased. Ella (41 years old), a social services worker who left school at the age of 16 after becoming pregnant, with a tattoo on her leg that she wears with the same pride as her platform shoes. She became a grandmother at age 37. She has only been formally in politics for six years. She has practically all her life linked to the unions, with enormous power in training. By the way, Rayner has Starmer’s number saved on his phone as “Mr. Darcy ”, referring to the ‘Bridget Jones’s Diary’.

After a resounding defeat harvested with Jeremy Corbyn (representative of the most radical left), the bases considered that the strange couple could offer a good balance. Although, as happened with Boris Johnson, Starmer was chosen as a leader not because he had a strong group of loyalists in his party, but because Labor MPs saw him as the best way to win the next elections.

“At the moment he remains in office. But if Labor does not keep its seat in the next Batley and Spen by-election, I don’t think it will survive politically,” say sources close to the party. The by-elections in this district that has traditionally voted for the left will take place next July.

New primaries could further weaken the formation. But the sources consulted see them as “inevitable”, since they assume that there will be more than one candidate. Aside from Rayner, another strong ringing name is Andy Burnham, the popular Mayor of Greater Manchester. He already appeared in the 2010 and 2015 primaries. He did not win because he was considered “too far to the left.” But the third time could be the final one. It is never too late for persevering. There is the example of Joe Biden.

“Things would be different now if he had won the 2015 primaries,” Burnham recently stressed. “If the Labor Party, after not electing me twice, reaches a point where it believes that, as things have evolved, I am the best option, I will come forward to lead it,” he added.

At the moment, the picture is not looking good for Starmer. According to the polls, if general elections are now held, the conservative absolute majority would increase from 80 to 122. Labor approval ratings have dropped to a low and a third of those who voted for the formation in 2019 are now calling for the current leader’s resignation. However, after the catastrophe of 1983, under Michael Foot, Labor was able to reinvent itself so that it could now also rise from its ashes. Although the underlying problem goes beyond the leader.

The sources consulted consider that, in general, “the social democratic parties in Europe have suffered a decline in recent decades as the industrial sector, where the majority of voters were, has been transformed into the service sector.” 

“In the factories, we had the voters and the unions and that connection with the rank and file has been lost. We have to reinvent ourselves, they clarify.

Along these lines, in an essay published in ‘The New European’, analyst Peter Kellner points out that the typical Labor voter is no longer a labor unionist working in a mine, shipyard, steel mill or factory. 

The “emotional connection” to Labor, built-in one-industry cities and reinforced by active workers’ clubs and union branches, will not return. The “collectivist workers,” says veteran journalist and expert polls, are now less than 3 percent of the electorate. Yet much of the left still lives in a pre-millennium fantasy world where it doesn’t sound ridiculous to address your colleagues as “comrade.”

Alex Niven, a professor at Newcastle University, believes that Labor should now focus on the northeastern suburbs and smaller towns, where younger workers and families are already relocating in search of cheaper housing, maintaining the party’s support in the big cities. 

“It is in this newer demographic of the 21st century that Labor must continue to place its trust, not in an outdated and unimaginative vision of a Red Wall in northern England that no longer exists,” he says.

The ‘third way’

For his part, former Prime Minister Tony Blair, who led Labor to its glory days with the so-called ‘Third Way’ has published this week in the New Stateman a devastating analysis of the center-left eclipse whose conclusion is as follows: “the Labor Party needs a total deconstruction and reconstruction”.

His article makes three key points. First, Labor lacks a compelling economic message: when the right is willing to spend “whatever it takes” – as Treasury Minister Rishi Sunak has put it, for pandemic recovery – Labor’s message of conservative austerity seems obtuse. 

Second, the left has little or nothing to say about the technological revolution. Two of the most common occupations among Labor voters, retail and transportation, will be transformed by robots and artificial intelligence. Yet the party is content to let Mark Zuckerberg and Nick Clegg define the digital future. 

Third, it condemns the left’s weak response to identity-based movements like ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘Extinction Rebellion’. Blair believes that Labor, in particular, has adopted his slogans “uncritically and thoughtlessly”.

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