I thought the whole point about Jeremy Corbyn was his different stance to the Blairites and Brownites. They compromised socialism and tried to trim and alter their views as they tacked to the media’s winds. His second convincing victory seemed to give him the platform to try a new approach, to stick to principles and to offer something very different to the disaster that Mr Brown created by cosying up to the Bank of England and the commercial banks.
I always thought Mr Corbyn was principled and different to establishment Labour on three big issues. The first was his lifelong opposition to the UK having a nuclear deterrent. In his first year as Labour leader it looked as if he was fighting to make that the position of the party he leads, or at the very least to preserve a strong body of anti nuclear opinion by offering a free vote. With his re election just a few hours old, he now decides to sweep aside the principles of a lifetime and to accept that his party does support the renewal of Trident. It appears that a combination of Union and Blairite MP pressure has forced a re think.
The second area of difference was membership of the EU. As a backbencher he seemed to see the EU as a corporate lobbyists plot, with the EU unelected government working closely with big business, leading to social and economic consequences he hates. He is no natural supporter of Euro austerity policies. He seemed happier with the idea that we should leave, or avoid ever closer entanglement. Yet in the referendum he was forced or persuaded to offer lukewarm support for staying in. He went round saying he was fighting to keep EU labour protections. This was bizarre as all parties involved agreed we should keep them, whether in or out. Now we see him moving even more in the direction of wanting to impede the very Brexit he said we needed to implement. It seems he does want to lead his party away from the Leave camp, despite the fact that very large numbers of Labour voters in the cities of England voted to leave and are alienated from their party by its unthinking support for all things that come from the EU Commission.
The third area of disagreement in the past has been over UK military intervention in the Middle East. It looks as if here, too, he is watering down his opposition. There is no pledge to campaign to stop the UK raids over Syria and Iraq, no passionate speeches about the outcomes of interventions in Libya, Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.
It looks as if he is exhausted by his victory, and moving towards the Brown and Blair supporting MPs who have been trying to get rid of him. If he compromises too much with them he will surely lose that very socialist stardust that his many Labour supporters admire. I had thought Mr Owen Smith would be better from the Conservative point of view, but a Mr Corbyn shorn of his principles will struggle for support.