Is Mr Corbyn throwing away his main advantage?

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.

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49 Comments

  1. graham1946
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    My goodness, a leader reflecting the views of his party! Whatever next?

    I don’t understand your last sentence. Surely, supporting Trident and , exiting the EU are vote winners (not that Labour are electable) and I don’t remember any party asking the voters on their views re bombing the Middle East back to the stone age and thereby fostering Islamic State. Opposing the bombing won’t do any good. Since when does a government intent on its own proposals take any notice of opposition?

    I have always maintained too much power is in too few hands and as we have seen since Cameron left, very much in the grasp of the PM who just makes it up as she wishes and jettisons what was recently regarded as essential Tory Policy and introduces others for which there is no mandate. Haven’t heard of any Tory MP complaining about it, when just a few months ago the sycophants would hear no complaint about Cameron and Osborne policies. They were geniuses. Where are the Tory MP’s principles, since you ask about Corbyn’s?

    Reply Most of us understand and accept that large parties are coalitions, with constant debate about policy and expression. Each of us has a different threshold for what we will oppose to keep our principles, and what we will accept to be a team player. Mr Corbyn claims he is different, and does not have to compromise as he has principles which his members want and which therefore his MPs should accept.

    • Iain Gill
      Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      To Johns Reply:

      The Daily and Sunday Politics manifesto tracker is quite good (for the ever so biased BBC) showing 16 Conservative manifesto commitments on which there has been little or no progress, in other words the politicians were just telling porkies and had no intention of delivering on their promises. That is at the heart of the problem with our so called democracy.

      • Mark Watson
        Posted September 28, 2016 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

        To be fair the same tracker is showing that the 16 so far undelivered manifesto commitments are quite a small minority compared to those delivered and those on course to be delivered.

      • Hope
        Posted September 29, 2016 at 8:02 am | Permalink

        Ken Clarke seems to arrogantly equate the EU leave result as an opinion poll that he will not listen to. He might want to consider that it is the same sort of opinion poll that gets him in office! He needs to shut up and retire quietly rather than than fall asleep in Westminster during debates.

    • graham1946
      Posted September 28, 2016 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply.

      So it seems that there is not really any firm policy about anything much other than that which the Leader is set upon? So much of Cameron’s policies are being jettisoned, it is a direct insult to him although his MP’s were all supportive of all he wanted including Mrs. May whilst he was in charge and are prepared to kick him now he’s not? What’s the point of the upcoming conference – is it just to be told what you have to support from now on? Or is it just to let the plebs do the heavy lifting of more boring stuff that the Leadership has no particular opinion against?

      Why doesn’t Corbyn have to change his position if his half million or more members want him to? Ignoring them is is exactly what I mean about to much power in one pair of hands. Leadership is not dictatorship.

  2. Norman
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    Principles are one thing, and might well beguile the young and naive; but what’s the underlying script, and spirit, behind them? I suspect they fly in the face of the cherished sense of sovereign identity and freedom embodied, deep down, in Brexit.

  3. alan jutson
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    Mr Corbyn is an old fashioned Socialist who is trying to dress himself up in new clothes.
    But they do not fit, simples.
    He wants to borrow very many more, hundreds of Billions of Pounds.
    He wants complete re-distribution of wealth.
    He wants to tax the rich more (whoever they may be)
    He agrees at the moment with uncontrolled immigration.
    He would like unilateral nuclear disarmament, and I guess conventional (if it was ever possible)
    He would like to expand the NHS no matter what the cost.

    In short he would like a Communist type State run Country, even though such examples and also that of left wing Socialism have failed in the past and present, worldwide.

    I see it is reported in today’s press that his answer to the free movement of people problem, would be to have similar pay rates, right across the EU membership Countries.

    Perhaps a lofty thought, but only if the same tax rates, pension rights, pension rates, welfare rates, sickness benefit, unemployment benefit, employment law, and cost of living is the same throughout the EU as a whole. !

    Not sure if that means our wages go down, or Romainia’s go up !

    Does the EU then still take people in from the rest of the World ?

    He has his supporters of course, some of those who have little or nothing are always fertile ground for such promises of future riches.

    The sooner the Labour Party eject him and his followers, the sooner they may have a chance of being re-elected, in the meantime I can only hope that he and his policies are found out before too many follow his cause, which would mean a disaster for the whole Country.

  4. Bert Young
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    Corbyn depends on the support of his Party ; he will amend his views accordingly . Labour has lost its way and drifts from one extreme to another ; as things stand he hopes he will provide a stimulus that will re-unite his objectors and once again create a proper Opposition . Like all Political leaders his time will be short .

  5. lojolondon
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    John, you are absolutely correct, Parliament has become deeply non-representative of the people of Britain. The reason is that WITH A FEW EXCEPTIONS, MP’s are NOT selected from the local area, by concerned, loyal party members. The MP for an area is generally selected by the leader of the party and his close allies, and ‘parachuted’ in. This is especially true in the case of the safest seats, in fact, the safer the seat, the more likely a remote candidate.
    So that leads to MP’s – correctly – realising that their loyalty is to the leader of the party, NOT to their voters. Now most Labour party voters are against the EU, but most of Labour MP’s pro-EU. Most Labour party members against uncontrolled immigration, but most Labour MP’s pro-immigration. Similarly, most Conservative voters against the EU, but most of Labour MP’s pro-EU. Same with HS2, the Biased BBC and a host of other issues, MP’s share the same views as the previous leader did at the time they became MP’s. The only way out is to stop nominating loyal friends for cushy positions in Parliament, perhaps a good law to pass would be that one should permanently reside in the area where one is an MP.

  6. Richard Butler
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    Corbyn misses the point that people do not want a minimum wage, they want a maximum wage by way of limited supply of cheap labour. Corbyn has NOTHING to say to the millions of self employed traders that daily have their dignity and dreams trampled, on account of having to work for far lower rates.

    What would happen if Corbyn built masses of shiny new council homes and schools? Would this unbelievable resource attract fewer or more migrants to Britain? His throwing resource at areas of high immigration would thus not solve a thing.

    Comfy liberals never seem to have to compete with cut priced immigrants, funny that.

    I see so many downsides to mass immigration, even down to ‘silly’ things like the wildlife in my rural area being decimated by cats as more and more people move in. 15 years ago we had thriving colonies of wonderful grass snakes and lizards here, now all but gone. I’m sorry to those that think we’re short of Humans, and there’s no more to life than relentless consumption and Human expansion, but I feel magical England is being lost.

    On the one hand Corbyns idealists stand on stage bleating on about GW, the next they argue for mass immigration, taking low impact developing world citizens and transforming them into high impact UK consumer citizens, not to mention the devastating effects caused by trained Doctors & Nurses leaving these vulnerable lands behind.

  7. Lifelogic
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Indeed, in his old age, he is becoming as slippery as Cameron & Osborne. The one policy he was right on (the EU) went out of the window a while back. Still he is surely rather preferable to the dire Owen (lets stay in the EU anyway) Smith.

    The good news is surely that Labour in surely unelectable under almost any leader. Corbyn and McDonnell’s economic policies would clearly kill the economy. They live in an insane dream world of magic money trees. Their solution to anything is to throw more of other people’s money at it and more regulation at it too. The complete opposite of what is needed.
    Then again Osborne’s approach was essentially almost the same.

    Hammond still in hiding it seems and still no sensible sense of direction from him or May’s government. What are they playing at? Surely at least they can cancel HS2, keep the IHT promise and get on with some runways, what are they waiting for?

    • graham1946
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 10:07 am | Permalink

      Hopefully Hammond is working hard on his budget and will announce what he is doing at the Autumn Statement. We had enough of a part time Chancellor in Osbourne.

      Frankly, I’d rather hear less from all of them other than when Brexit is going to get started and assume they are actually working rather than posing is hard hats and high viz jackets, whilst causing chaos with their pet policies. The less they mess around with things the better off we will be.

  8. Antisthenes
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    The only virtue Corbyn could be said to possess was that he was a man of principle and now even that has been shown to be a sham (or has it). What ever next will he jettison; his hard left views to embrace more moderate opinions. His stance on immigration would not appear to indicate he will become more pragmatic to unite the party and bow to populist opinions to try and win an election. His U turns on other policies appears to suggest that he will. He has control of the membership but not the PLP or the NEC at least yet. The latter slipping further away from him.

    He could hardly be thought of as one of the brightest politicians but he does not lack cunning, patience and stamina. To those who observe and those who oppose him he is a most exasperating man as his behaviour is so erratic because it is controlled by his adolescent idealism. That sees social and economic governance in very simple black and white terms. So anything that challenges that irritates him and makes him more determined to impose his will.

    He is now in a position that he cannot impose that will on all of his party so conflict between him, the party membership and the PLP is inevitable. His vacillations I believe are his opening tactics. See which way the wind blows and lull the opposition into a false sense of security and patiently wait for god and boundary changes to do the rest. All the while introduce policies that are less controversial(for the rest of Labour that is but an anathema for us the non leaning left) like Mcdonnell economics.

  9. Iain Gill
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    The labour heartlands are going to vote UKIP in large blocks if labour keep on with the open doors immigration policy. They as well not bother standing for election.

    Although its got to be said the Conservatives are in similar danger.

  10. ian wragg
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    Corbyn probably has no principles really deeply held. He is a student protester who likes to go against the grain.
    He will be for large scale immigration because the majority of the population are against it. he is well aware that being anti EU is anti free movement so this won’t fit with his narrative.
    Momentum is a throw back to the 70’s and probably supported by 5% of the population.
    The other 95% are a little more grown up.
    let the labour party wither and die.

    • graham1946
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      I’m inclined to agree. There is an old school of thought that in your twenties you are likely to be a socialist, but if you still are in your forties there is something wrong with you (professionals excluded, of course as they make money from it).

  11. Lifelogic
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    David Gauke, Chief Secretary to the Treasury was on the daily politics now.

    He was very unimpressive. He sounds very like another dire remainer & socialist to me. Is he really the best Hammond and May can find. Or does he just reflect their real views?

  12. agricola
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    There are three elements to the Labour party, Labour party membership, Labour Mps in the H o C, and those who might vote Labour. At present they are irreconcilably divided.

    On the nuclear deterrent, the arrivista membership is at odds with Labour Mps, those who might vote Labour, and the unions involved in the nuclear deterrent.

    On EU membership the arrivistas and Labour Mps are on the whole for it, but those who might vote Labour are by and large against it because they have most directly felt the adverse consequences of it.

    As for the Middle East, I would not like to guess what the collective support for Labour think. They cover every scenario from tea and sandwiches with ISIS to bomb them to extinction.

    Should Labour Mps find their cojones, I predict trouble ahead for Mr Corbyn because the pressing of his agenda supported by some of the nastier elements of his party will divide them irrevocably. The split will be between those who believe in a pragmatic, art of the possible socialism and those wedded to an impractical socialist utopia. The sort that China and Russia have given up on.

    From a Conservative point of view it would be dangerous to gloat over the opposition in disarray. The electorate are too well informed to suffer the excesses of capitalism we have suffered in the past and for too long.

  13. Lifelogic
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    Also the Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (and it seems also for International Trade) thinks the UK is a net exporter of gas! So he is clearly on top of his brief.

    We could be of course with fracking but he is against that. What have we done to deserve such dire people in parliament?

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted September 28, 2016 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

      Lifelogic. In the meantime and while fracking is banned the scandal of subsidies for all manner of renewables goes on. Many farmers around our way are getting biomass boilers (very big ones for the subsidies) and then putting them in their barns and turning them up to the highest setting for as long as possible to get the subsidies that are paid out. One farmer has even installed a tap connected to the boiler and a tank to heat the water. They open the tap on a permanent basis so the boiler has to work 24/7. Yes, it’s you and I that have to pay the generous subsidies for this waste of energy and even worse, the poor have to pay for people to get paid for nothing. Scandalous!! This is fact and not fiction.

    • graham1946
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 10:17 am | Permalink

      Well, its probably the old adage that a poor manager never appoints someone who is more able than they are, which is why we get so many duffers in charge and the gifted and hard working (like John, here) are left on the shelf.

    • Atlas
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

      Possibly the apparent contradiction is resolved by noting that INEOS are importing the gas Ethane, whereas we are exporting the gas Methane?

      As for fracking – provided the owners of the land above it get a fair cut – then go ahead with it.

  14. Paul Owen
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Why do you keep calling Owen Smith Mr Owen? You sound like a 1920s butler.

  15. Mark B
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    Good afternoon.

    He is buying time and trying to unite the party.

  16. Denis Cooper
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    Given that Labour is unlikely to get back into power for at least a decade my only real concern is that Labour MPs and peers might align themselves with the anti-democratic faction which is seeking to impede or prevent our withdrawal from the EU. They could do that if the courts decided that the government did not have the legal right to serve the Article 50 notice without further authorisation from Parliament, or the government itself unnecessarily and foolishly conceded that legal point before the judges delivered their final verdict.

    Incidentally the media are creating a lot of confusion about a “second referendum”, which can mean either a) a repeat of the June 23rd EU referendum, or b) a referendum to decide whether the finally negotiated new post-EU settlement is acceptable.

    Few people are now still arguing for a), a re-run of the June 23rd referendum, while some are arguing for b), a referendum on the outcome of the withdrawal negotiations. I would not dismiss b) out of hand, but I can see difficulties about what choice could be offered in such a referendum.

    It seems unlikely that after wearisome negotiations on a new treaty or treaties the other governments would be willing to say “OK, you don’t like this, so we will just back to where we were before you said you wanted to leave”, and it also seems unlikely that they would be willing to re-open the negotiations.

    • Oggy
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      A second referendum on exit terms would never work, because there are in the main 3 present opinions –
      1) those who don’t want to leave the EU
      2) those who want a ‘soft’ brexit and
      3) those who want a hard brexit

      whatever exit negotiations the Government takes and if put to a second referendum, voters supporting 2 out of the 3 options will always vote down the other, thus a second referendum on EU exit terms would NEVER get approval which would ensure our continued membership of it. Which is probably what those people who are asking for a 2nd referendum are hoping for.

    • Oggy
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 9:02 am | Permalink

      PS – This is exactly what Tim Farron said at the Liberal conference -‘ having a second referendum on exit terms is ‘our’ only hope of staying in’. (the EU)

    • rose
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      I can always tell a Remainiac because they say “no-one knows what to do.” This is infuriating as so many of them seem to believe it. What they mean is they don’t know what to do and they project it on to Brexiteers.

    • graham1946
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 10:25 am | Permalink

      I don’t disagree on the ‘second referendum’ if it is merely to support the outcome of the negotiations, as long is it is just that and not an excuse to overturn the first one. This would put pressure on the Government and the EU to get the best deal possible, rather than, as I am afraid an old cynic like me fears, some sort of cobble up to keep the Remoaners in the Tory Part happy, whilst not really leaving at all.

      As far as the second referendum is concerned, it need not be difficult to organise, just a straight choice of ‘do you agree with what has been negotiated or not?’. In the case of ‘Not’ we just leave and ignore all of it and let the EU come to us with better proposals. Otherwise it would be never ending.

    • ChrisS
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

      The decision to leave has been made and there is no going back on that.

      The choice at a second referendum would therefore have to be either the negotiated deal or no deal at all and WTO terms.

      The outcome would seem to be an almost certain acceptance of the deal, unless Mrs May foolishly agrees to keep budget contributions and FOM.

      If she were to attempt to push through any deal involving ongoing budget contributions and FOM, the two issues which were at the very heart of the campaign, I suspect she would lose the referendum.

      I don’t think she will even attempt that, unless parliamentary pressures force her to do so. The Remainers will get another bloody nose

  17. Mitchel
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    I thought it rather surprising too;he will be looking hopelessly compromised if he carries on like this.

    There is a brilliant skewering of the central tenets of Marxism in a lengthy,erudite review of a well-regarded new biography of Karl Marx(by Gareth Stedman Jones)by Fredinand Mount in the current (23 September) edition of the TLS.

  18. Ed Mahony
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    If it wasn’t for the Iraq War, there would be no Corbyn and no Brexit.
    Lots of Labour voters really hated the Iraq war and they now associate moderate Blair with Iraq. Therefore they want to move away from moderate politics to Corbyn’s fantasy socialism.
    Many traditional Labour voters only voted for Brexit as some vague protest against moderate Labour. If it wasn’t for them, the Leavers would have lost the referendum. Plus the Conservative Party would have remained more central were it not for the Labour shift to the left and the vacuum left in the middle of politics (a space which the Conservatives should be taking ownership of and not drifting further to the right).
    It’s now possible that the Conservative Party could split as many moderate Conservative Party voters feel alienated by the way the Conservative Party has shifted to the right.
    Let’s be under no illusions. Most voters in this country are moderate voters. And one way or another, the electorate will come back to bite the Conservative Party in the ass if it shifts too far to the right. Either they will vote more for the Liberals or else a new moderate, protest party will emerge, which could boot both the Labour and Conservative parties out to touch for good, and we will then be left with some new kind of party system, reflecting moderate voters on both the left and the right. And this could also have an important impact on the future of the UK’s relationship with the EU.

  19. James Munroe
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

    Surprised to see an article dedicated to the ‘Dead Parrot’ that is the current Labour Party.

    It lies on the bottom of the cage, in rigor mortis, while other Party politicians poke sticks at the poor dead creature, to confirm its demise…

    • Margaret
      Posted September 28, 2016 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

      Bring on John Cleese

  20. acorn
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

    It is getting confusing, trying to work out who is batting and bowling for which team! Reason and reality seem to have been replaced by identity politics and populism.

    Assuming that the centre ground is still where the voters with money are, political parties normally try and drag themselves to this area of voters. Mr Blair did it with Labour; today’s Blairites want to do the same. I don’t see Mr Corbyn even trying to do it. He appears to want to drag the centre, toward the near Marxist left. Good luck with that one.

    I read “Boris Johnson: UK will help Turkey join the EU”; and, “Michael Fallon said Tuesday that Britain will “oppose any idea of an EU army”. Now, I maybe wrong here but these are two Cabinet Ministers, talking as if we are not going to “leave” – as in Brexit – the EU, anytime soon, if at all?

    PS. “British Eurocrats scramble to avoid Brextinction” of their EU mega pensions. (Politico.eu)

  21. Prigger
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    “Is Mr Corbyn throwing away his main advantage?” Yes.

    It can be worrying when members of political parties appear confused. Confusion within individuals. When an intelligent individual has a particular view of an issue using inconsistent criteria. As though Mr Jeckyll and Mr Hyde do not *just* take turns in manifesting themselves. But occupy and argue within and from the same mindset simultaneously. Professional politicians more than sometimes deliberately speak dualistically trying to evade giving a proper answer and hoping the general voter does not have an equally clever ear.

    The British National Party (BNP ), the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP),and the Green Party have quite a number of people, not deliberately evading proper answers, who display minds through their arguments which are unintentionally duumvirate or is it biumvirate? The Scottish National Party’s duumviratism I feel is quite deliberate and meant to mislead. They are often accused quite rightly of “Wishing to have their cake AND eat it ”

    The Point:
    Mr Corbyn is not a dummvirate, intentional or unintentional. He has made his views clear in the recent past. His apparent change of opinion is obviously to accommodate the positions of MPs within the Labour fold who bear little resemblance to any known definition of Socialist.
    One can respect youngsters with lovely idealistic views about for instance “Trade Union Participation in the UK”. They have absolutely no experience whatsoever of the inner workings of trades unions where a very narrow clique of people manipulate and control the many easily from extremely poorly attended branch, city and regional meetings. Mr Corbyn has been a professional trade union official. Single-minded aged 67.

  22. a-tracy
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

    In my opinion socialists like Corbyn were some of the biggest supporters on unsecured mortgage lending, it allowed many of their supporters to buy their own homes. Labour’s Brown and Blair made Goodwin a Knight for his services to this cause and N Rock were a big North East miracle bank if you listened to the news around at that time. When I had an ex-colleague making a mint signing people up to mortgages who didn’t even have to organise payslips to secure them, on interest only repayments, I knew the whole house of cards would tumble down at one point, when I discussed it with a large bank who was trying to secure our business at the time he laughed and said it was as safe as houses. So to hear Corbyn decry the banks whose rules were relaxed by the very party he now leads over this money moving shenanigans makes me laugh.

    Then he discusses scrapping tuition fees. I’ve come to bitter terms with tuition fees being a graduate tax of 9%, 15% if you dare to take a masters degree, for ENGLISH students only, until debts of near £50,000 are repaid. So a graduate tax to pay for a lifetime for most English students entering education post 2012 and about 26 years for those before. Will he be scrapping those tuition fee debts too? Fees started let’s not forget carried on the vote of Welsh and Scottish MPs whose constituents weren’t affected by the Labour Party policy and continued in the most damaging way by Osborne. Or will those poor graduates be paying for their own tuition, their parent’s generation tuition and the following generation’s tuition fees through greater taxation just on them alone?

    Then he discusses the self-employed, if the self-employed want the same benefits as employees then they must pay Employer’s NI for themselves and their own SSP as SMEs do plus NEST, plus compulsory 28 days holiday so their rates reflect these social costs.

  23. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

    JR you do put your case so precisely in such a circumscribed manner. It is hard to think of anything in reply except tangentially as you are usually as spatially correct as anyone can be.
    The Rt Hon Mr Corbyn, Leader of HM Opposition: Time is not on his side. Momentum cannot continue indefinitely. If 171 MPs can fall out then so can many times that number in the Labour Party. Nothing to do with politics, of course, of course not, or the Way of the World ( I still somehow search The Telegraph for an article by Auberon Waugh, stupid I know! ) but a very large percentage of Momentum will be pregnant or mothers and fathers before the next General Election. Youthful enthusiasm no doubt. Which will leave Mr Corbyn with Angela Eagle for a comradely buddy.
    He will not be PM , nor Ms Eagle nor any of those having shotgun weddings.

  24. Bob
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

    @Mr Redwood
    How much longer are we going to continue with the ninesense of changing the clocks twice a year? Why can’t we just leave them on BST?

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted September 28, 2016 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

      Bob, It might be ok for the clocks to stay the same in England but not in the northern areas of Scotland or indeed in the South of Scotland for a few weeks. Our children would be going to school in the dark. In the darkest months it doesn’t get light until after 8am now so if the clocks were not changed it would not be great.

    • graham1946
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 10:27 am | Permalink

      Mrs. Sturgeon wouldn’t like it.

    • miami.mode
      Posted September 29, 2016 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

      Bob. My sixth sense tells me that you mean nonsense and not ninesense.

      Doubtful that you have much experience of driving to work at 7am in mid winter!

  25. Graham
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    JR I know you like to inform on all matters and do them well but please please use your precious time to push us towards the EU door asap,

    Please

  26. Margaret
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Apart from the fact that my upbringing was conservative living next door to our conservative MP and a father who cried at the death of Churchill I remain a floating voter . Principles float over from party to party . Directions and what people say are not consistent, so I also go with the flow .No one as far as I can see goes against party members and gets elected ..that is all there is to say about that..

  27. ChrisS
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    I see the Telegraph is reporting that in the unlikely event that Sarkozy wins the French Presidency again, he wants to offer Britain a new deal and a second referendum in order to get us to stay.

    This smacks of desperation and surely has a lot to do with the risk of losing French exports if a majority of the 27 won’t agree to a free trade deal – not to mention the loss of our net contribution of almost £10bn pa.

    I suspect that the electorate are getting used to the idea of Brexit and are coming round to feeling good about the UK becoming a fully autonomous country again.

    After all the crap from Cameron and Osbourne et al and the lack of any of their dire predictions coming true, another referendum could well produce an bigger majority in favour of leaving.

    Juncker, Schulz, Verhofstadt and Co are very keen for us to leave so they can get on with building their EU army and gaining the remaining few trappings of a country the EU currently doesn’t have.

    They might prefer it if we were staying, but the German Government believes Brexit is irreversible.

    Let’s hope Merkel is right for once.

  28. Brigham
    Posted September 28, 2016 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

    I can’t understand why people say that Corbyn and Denis Skinner are nice and honest. In my opinion they are both nasty old men. Corbyn in particular will do anything to hang on to power, even if it means breaking up his party, and that is not soon enough for me. A huge majority for the tories at the next election, will enable us to get the countries finances out of the red.

  29. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted September 29, 2016 at 12:53 am | Permalink

    I think that his retreat on these three issues will be purely tactical, for the benefit of the Labour conference. Mr Corbyn will do nothing to stop his adoring 600,000 members from deselecting his hard core PLP opponents. He doesn’t need to urge this; it will happen quite naturally.

    What will cook Labour’s goose is the combination of Mr Corbyn’s let-them-all-come immigration policy and Mr McDonnell’s £10 per hour living wage. This combination will make the UK a huge magnet for unskilled labour, with really unpopular consequences. They seem to lack all sense of self preservation.

  30. Excalibur
    Posted September 29, 2016 at 5:31 am | Permalink

    Congrats on that line, JR, as they ‘tacked to the media’s winds’…..

  31. rose
    Posted September 29, 2016 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    But that nice Mr Corbyn has got principles: he is going to arrange for everyone in Europe to be paid the same and have the same working conditions. Then they won’t need to move about. What a brilliant idea! Why hasn’t anyone thought of it before?

    I know, why not extend the scheme to Africa and Asia? Then no-one need cross the Mediterranean. And wouldn’t it be a nice gesture to throw in Central and South America so Mr Trump doesn’t have to build that wall?

    The only thing that worries me aobut the scheme is that he doesn’t mention harmonisation of welfare states. Surely if he were really principled he would arrange for everyone in the world to have an NHS free at the point of use, and free housing, education, and medicine, all topped up with tax credits, child benefit, housing benefit, attendance allowance and PIP?

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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