13 May, 2021

No Jeremiad Will Obstruct This New, New Labour

Britain’s demoralised public and confused political flailings are sought to be given a spine of principled, socialist steel by Jeremy Corbyn

On Principle
Jeremy Corbyn on June 9, after poll results came out
Photograph by Getty Images
No Jeremiad Will Obstruct This New, New Labour

To the much-spoken-of Rightward lurch in politics everywhere, attested to by the rise of a whole roster of hard-hat figures across the globe, there is a corollary. There was a time, not too long ago, when a Bernie Sanders campaign would have been unthinkable on the American landscape. And now, there is the Englishman with a beard that’s been equally derided and good-naturedly feted. Jeremy Corbyn, till the other day, would have been seen as a politician so far out on the left as to be simply unviable. But here we are in the summer of 2017, with Labour pulling up just a whisker or two away from a majority in a snap poll and young supporters greeting him everywhere with a joyous pop anthem, a reworked version of Seven Nation Army.

The arrival of Corbyn as a serious politician, a stunning makeover during the course of which he won over many sceptics, was marked by the unexpected results thrown up in the recent parliamentary polls. In a sense, it had to do with the logic of the times—the anxieties over Brexit, a general gloominess. But it’s the way...

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