Sunday, 5 April 2020

Welcome Keir Starmer

 It is a relief that the Labour Party has chosen Sir Keir Starmer as their new leader.  Thank goodness their members   have put electability purity of dogma.  

That is not to say that I think Jeremy Corbyn is anything other than a decent man with reasonable ideas and a record of being right.  Unfortunately It was too easy for the hostile press to distort his past record so that, for example, support of the Palestinian cause was too easily twisted into anti-Semitism, and dialogue with the IRA was turned into support of terrorism.

I've no doubt that it won't take long for the press to discover items from Starmer's past with which to smear him.  He was, after all, a human rights lawyer and I'm pretty sure he'll have defended someone at sometime whom the right wing find unsavoury.  However, Starmer is a gifted man who rose to the top of a profession outside politics and is probably as capable as anyone of mastering the difficult tasks ahead.

I think these are three.

Most immediately he must co-operate with the government on finding the best measure to take to combat the coronavirus without at the same time allowing himself and his party to be dragged into sharing the blame for the mess the government has made so far.  This will be a difficult tightrope to walk.

There will be plenty of time for criticism later and the facts wills peak for themselves.  

As of last week China has all but stopped the spread of the virus with 3,322 deaths or just 2 per million population. The death rate in South Korea has also slowed with just 174 deaths or 3 per million population. In Britain deaths are still rising with 3,605 so far or 53 per million population.  

And we had three months to prepare.

Second, he must sort out the fratching within the Labour Party itself.  The great fault of the Labour party is that, collectively, it thinks it has the one unique solution to the ills in our society, and that those of us with different views should get off their patch and leave them to it.  Starmer's problem is that inside it the Labour Party has several factions each with its own unique view of the unique solution, and he needs to get them to pull together.  Good luck.

Thirdly Starmer needs to persuade these these unique possessors of the one true way that, if the Conservatives forces are to be defeated , then they must learn to accommodate to working with others.  

What might loosely be called the progressive forces in the UK, Liberal Democrats, Greens, most of the nationalists, the Women's Party are, along with Labour,  in the majority.  The major stumbling block to our working together has, in the past, been the Labour Party, especially the clause in their constitution which rules that there should be a Labour candidate to contest every parliamentary seat.  Getting rid of that could be Starmer's "Clause four" moment.


  1. dialogue with the IRA was turned into support for terrorism.

    He did support the IRA, as did his cronies like John McDonnell.

    He was, after all, a human rights lawyer and I'm pretty sure he'll have defended someone at sometime whom the right wing find unsavoury

    Which shouldn't be held against him, because (due to the cab-rank principle and for good reasons) lawyers don't get to choose who they represent. Of course this also means that he shouldn't be claiming credit for some of the cases he's taken on, which he has been, so it's his fault for legitimising those attacks.

    As of this week China has all but stopped the spread of the virus with 3,322 deaths, or just 2 per million population

    If you think those figures are within an order of magnitude of the reality I have a great bridge over the Irish Sea to sell you.

    1. I've copied the figures in good faith from a source I think reliable. What evidence have you that they're wrong? what do you think they are> (UK total has gone up to over 4 000 now: source BBC News at 4pm which I think is reliable. )

  2. What evidence have you that they're wrong?

    The Chinese Communist Party has never released a truthful statistic. They've been lying about their economic performance for decades. If they knew the truth they'd lie about it. However in this case…

    what do you think they are

    … I don't know and the truth and the Chinese Communist Party doesn't even know either, because — as in any communist society — the officials on the ground are terrified that if they let those higher up the chain know how bad things really are they will lose their jobs or perhaps even their heads, so they have been lying and saying everything is fine.

    The figures are necessarily inaccurate because if the CCP knew the truth they would hide it, and they don't even know the truth.

  3. I note that Wuhan has just admitted to 50% more deaths than previously (1,290 which takes it to 3,869 in Wuhan alone).

    Now obviously that's (a) just the tip of the cover-up iceberg in Wuhan; there are clearly thousands (or tens of thousands) more deaths that have been covered up, and (b) just one province, but already the correction makes the death toll in that one province bigger than what had previously been reported for all of China.