Tuesday 1 August 2023

Five Most Popular Posts in July

Where did that month go? Politics-wise it was a bit of a wash out, certainly not as fast-paced and as eventful as this time last year. But whether the flow is lackadaisical or rapid, I'm here chronicling what I can. And here's what you folk read the most in July.

1. And Then They Came for the Soft Left
2. Strong on the Weak
3. Making Sense of Tory "Corbynism"
4. Beyond the July By-Elections
5. Along Comes Another New Left Wing Party

Going back to the start of the month, news that long-time Labour member and advocate of progressive alliances, Neal Lawson, was under investigation for a two-year-old tweet excited more fretful comment about Labour's authoritarian turn under Keir Starmer. And so it was almost this blog's duty to step in and consider the issues. And yes, it should have been clear to anyone that when Starmer turned the dirty business of organising the party and fixing elections to Labour First, their attacks would inevitably extend to the soft left. Sticking with Starmerism, Labour ditched its promise to get rid of the two child benefit cap all because Starmer wanted to look "tough". Funny how toughness in politics always equates to dumping on the weak, never taking on the strong. In at three was some reflections on John Rentoul fretting over the likely right wing direction the Tories are going to head in after their electoral pummelling. I felt duty bound to put any such move on sociologically sound footing, and not evaporate the causes away into "madness" so mainstream writers and commentators don't have to think too hard about it. There were also some by-elections in July that were very bad for the Tories. But as the one they retained was partly thanks to negative campaigning about Ultra Low Emission Zones, I forecast this would become the centrepiece of their political strategy from now on. And so it has proven. And bringing up the rear is news of another new left party, or rather regroupment of existing outfits, under a new banner. The barriers to success appear insurmountable, but aren't helped either by not having a clear purpose separate from the already-existing extra-Labour left groupings that already exist.

What did the fickle audiences pass over this month? I'm going to put two posts out there, because it's my blog and I'll plug if I want to. The first is another rare Tony Blair intervention, this time on the NHS. Thinking about what he's proposing and the politics that come tangled up in it are very important to grasp how the NHS will continue to provide capital guaranteed markets under a future Labour government. And last night's piece on Tory fossil fuel mania deserves a punt as it won't be immediately apparent on the side bar.

Have to day I am getting well suited to this more sedate pace of posting. Reading books and doing other things in the evening is quite nice, so don't expect 30 more missives in August - unless real happenings happen, or something. If you haven't already don't forget to follow the free (mostly) weekly newsletter, and if you like what I do (and you're not skint), you can help support the blog. Following me on Twitter and Facebook are cost-free ways of showing your backing for this corner of the internet.


1729torus said...

This article might be of interest, concerns the an internal report the the Irish Labour Party commissioned concerning their time in power from 2011 to 2016.


Anonymous said...

So that's what Yezhov looked like? I had no idea he was such a weedy shrimp. I suppose the Yezhovshchina was compensation . . .