Anyone remotely familiar with British politics won’t be surprised to learn that Jeremy Corbyn, Labour Party leader, isn’t particularly well-furnished between his ears.
A new book, Dangerous Hero, sadly aping something more fitting for a Steven Seagal title, confirms everything one already knew about dear Jeremy.
It also confirms the sad state of British politics. On the morning of its release, the book had already gathered a blizzard of one-star reviews. Given that the tome numbers some 400 pages, one suspects that these verdicts were made comment-section style—“I haven’t read the article, but . . . ”
Across 400 pages, one learns that Jeremy is radiantly dull. That his translucent thin-skin isn’t old-age curmudgeon masquerading as teenage angst. That his platoon of brain cells shuffles lonesome and listless across an arid landscape, having never gathered as one.
Corbyn’s first wife, the book tells, endured four years before breaking away from socialist marital dudgeon. In that time, she says, he never once read a book. Which is, perhaps, a snobbish charge. But Jeremy is meant to be our next prime minister.
Raised by academic parents in an ornately middle-class home, educated at a fee-paying private school where preschoolers gabble French, Jeremy wheezed two E grades at high school level. Which, by rough calculation, is a 0.7 GPA.
The author neatly sums up a worldview in which pension-aged Jeremy has ambered since his teens: “He came to loathe high-achievers, especially undergraduates with ambition to get to the top. Most of all, he hated the rich and successful, and identified with losers.”
Of course, not everyone is academic. Of course, not everyone plans on running the country. One would hazard that such lofty ambition steep in a book or two.
Perversely, whatever chance Jeremy had of becoming prime minister withered this week. Having suffered defections from nine of his lawmakers, Jeremy heeded to the cosmopolitan blob within his party to back a second referendum.
But Corbyn, a lifelong Euroskeptic, and correct in his prosecutions that the EU serves only the Davos set, now backs a rerun, despite promising to see Brexit through.
The arithmetic doesn’t lie: one-third of Labour voters backed Brexit. And still do. Labour heartlands in the North, across the Midlands, and stretching down to South Wales, all backed Leave. They still do.
But the new Labour Party, long-resentful of the people it was founded to defend, doesn’t care.
As Theresa May’s deal to leave the European Union still whiffles its noisome fumes, Remainers busy themselves with one last stand against the people who elected them. They have fewer than 30 days to overturn the biggest mandate in our history in favor of the banks, the corporations, and the business lobby. Modern progressivism bubbles a confusing broth.
What was once a battle between a poor deal, and a no-deal Brexit, is now: May’s poor deal, or no Brexit at all. The ERG holds the key. If they back down, May’s deal goes through. And we at least leave the European Union.
As mentioned previously, what clogs Brexit arteries is the “Irish Backstop”—an arcane detail within May’s withdrawal deal, which if triggered, would tie us to EU rules and regulations in the event that a deal remains absent after the two-year transition period.
The 100-or so ERG members see this as a trap. And given the EU’s tendency to ignore democratic will, such paranoia is perhaps reasonable. After all, the French rejected a similar vote. They voted again. The Irish did the same. They voted again.
Which is why Jacob Rees-Mogg is climbing down—telling media this week he “could live” with assurances that the backstop would not be permanent. Rather than his previous demand to “rip up” the backstop entirely. A slice of the loaf, it seems, is better than nothing at all.
Such a shift means May’s deal, set for a crucial vote on March 12, should pass through the House of Commons, and Britain will leave the European Union on March 29, as planned. If it doesn’t pass, well, we will probably never really leave. Which I suspect, for some, is the point.
But that scenario is merely the start. Brexit slashed open suppurating wounds. Those who’ve gained from the last thirty years of globalization still pummel pieties on those they’ve left behind—those on the periphery of Global London, or what Americans call “flyover country”—those they still insist didn’t understand what they were voting for. Those unfashionable wretches.
Those whom Jeremy Corbyn, until this week, feigned to care about most.
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