Labour's mask slips

There are good people, and others who are less so, in all the political parties. There are also divisions in all the parties.

In Labour's case though the pendulum swings from left to right on a regular basis the largest divide is between, on the one hand, the pragmatists such as Tony Blair or Sir Keir Starmer, who are willing to make some compromises between their views and reality (or the wishes of the electorate) but can come over as lacking in principle or being unclear about what they stand for. 

And on the other hand the fundamentalists and idealists, of whom Jeremy Corbyn is probably the most extreme archetype, whose dedicated followers may revere them as men and women of principle but who are all too often completely out of touch with the real world.

The present Labour leadership is in the former camp. And an interesting window was opened last night into whether the perception of a lack of principle and authenticity applies to them,

Last night a leaked party document revealed Labour’s plans to present their values and rebrand themselves.

Anyone involved in politics has to develop a certain capacity for cycnicism but it did seem to me that this Labour document took it to a new level. 

  • Set out in a strategy presentation to help change the party’s ‘body language’, Labour’s plans have been criticised as ‘patronising and totally inauthentic’.
  • In a plan to rebrand themselves, they cynically recommend the ‘use’ of the flag, veterans and ‘dressing smart at the war memorial’ in a shameless attempt to play pure politics; as the presentation reveals voters struggle to describe what Labour stands for. 
  • Values run deep and are absolutely fundamental to who you are – and they cannot be put on and off like a disguise in an attempt to hoodwink voters.  


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