The Reason Labour lost the Election and their Impending Suicide Watch

Ferrograd
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The 2019 General Election was a lot of things. It was one of the most polarising elections of our time, and indeed one of the most populist. Two populist candidates (yes, you can be a populist and a leftwinger, and Jeremy Corbyn is a massive populist) running head to head in a nation that is split between Leave and Remain.

It certainly was never going to be an easy election for Labour to win.

When the incredibly dissapointing results came in, the inevitable blame game instantly begun. Literally, within minutes, Andrew Neil had John McDonnell in the BBC studios, with McDonnell blaming Brexit on Labour's abysmal performance. This rhetoric was echoed in the days that followed, as pundits seized on the chance to give Corbyn's Labour one final grilling.

The answer, frankly, goes beyond Brexit.

The election result was not a vote for Boris, or a vote against Corbyn. It was a vote for Brexit. The massive majority of people who voted Conservative sent shockwaves through the Labour party HQ. Their northern heartlands had been lost to the Tories. For a while, it looked like they would have less than 200 MPs in Parliament. Fortuntely, it wasn't as bad, with 202 seats, but still, absolutely terrible if I may so myself as a Labour party member. I'm a member of the local CLP (Constituency Labour Party) group chat, and as the exit poll were released, to be frank, everyone was ****ting themselves.

I tried to encourage a false sense of optimism, maybe the polls would be wrong, massively perhaps. Maybe they really had got it wrong. A few hours later, it was clear that whilst the inital poll was slightly off (191 Labour compared to eventual 202), it was indeed a defeat - a massive one - for Labour.

The battle, was lost. But the war continues!

Brexit undoubtedly played a massive role. I believed it was a massive mistake for Labour to not honour the result of 2016. They did so in 2017, and we had a hung parliament. Granted, a much weaker Tory candidate was running, but we still did incredibly well compared to 2019's performance.

Instead, Labour was overrun by middle class hubris, the same that ensured that the Remain vote was obliterated in 2016 by Leave. The same hubris possessed by Labour leadership candidates like Emily Thornberry, who decry the national flag of England, and wear massive EU ones instead.

If Thornberry, Lammy, or any other remainer/liberal take charge of Labour, the party might as well be commiting suicide. If Labour is not dead already - and I sincerely hope not - it will be within a matter of minutes if one of these candidates take charge. Brexit will be done by 2024, but what's to say that one of these idiots then doesn't try and having another shot at calling a so called "People's Vote?" I wouldn't put it past them.

Labour ignored its Northern voters, instead it focused on gaining traction on the Lib Dems by appealing with a People's Vote. Whilst campaigning, I actually bought myself round to agreeing with this and Corbyn's neutrality policy, because at the time I felt it was the best way to unite both sides of the party without alienating one side. Clearly, this did not work, and the leadership should have realised this.

Labour should have simply said they would have honoured the result of the referendum. All they literally had to do. They should have also silenced Blairites, liberals and other people like John Ashworth who discredited Corbyn. Dianne Abbot, should have also not been spared from such a purge.

The Labour party must rebuild itself as a truly working class, socialist party. For its next manifesto, it should not think of a million and one things to offer the British public. It should be a simple message: Healthcare, Jobs, Education. They, after all, are the most important things to a functioning society, as opposed to free broadband or a few other gimmicks here and there.

Should they become "less" leftwing? Yes and no. They should not deviate from the position of a democratic socialist party. Absolutely not. If I had it my way, they would become more left wing. But that's me, and not the public, and its the public who are entrusted to vote for us. We must serve the public and not ourselves. Something that seems to have been ignored.

So, in terms of economics, they should remain the same, except stop chucking in another policy every five minutes. The public didn't - no pun intended - "buy" the idea of free wifi, that would have cost in excess of £40 billion. Many Labour party members who worked in BT discredited this idea and expressed their concerns, but were ignored.

However, it should elect a leader who doesn't have 35 years of history to throw at them. They should not be associated with any undesirable figures like Hamas or the PLO, even if it was in the context of reconcilliation and dialogue rather than praise and support as the Daily Mail would have you believe. That doesn't mean they should be pro Israel, although their electoral success could depend on it, but they shouldn't be associated with antisemites, like Hamas and many people in the PLO. They should be committed to patriotism - not rampant nationalism like some Tories and the far right, but maintaining a sense of pride in the country. Perhaps "Rule Brittania" would be more appropriate as opposed to The Red Flag. Actually, this is not something I would endorse, due to the colonial references in the former, but rather, Labour should reclaim the England flag from the far right so people like Thornberry don't have to criticise it, in the process alienating the white working classes.

To sum up; less free broadband, less Remainers, more Brexit, more working class!
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Smack
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One of Labour's principal problems for a while now is that they have two key groups of people to win votes from, and it is very difficult, maybe even impossible, to appeal to both of these groups simultaneously. These two groups are the young, urban and educated, and the traditional working class in industrial areas, and there are little similarities between them other than both being nominally against conservative/free-market economics. If Labour want to gain back their traditional working class vote they have to STFU about identity politics, Palestine, and remain, and be more socially conservative, which would likely turn-off a lot of their young, educated and urban support. As I said, it's difficult to see how Labour can appeal to both at the same time. This election, Labour were the party of North London rather than the North of England. Some of the traditional working class gets the impression that Labour actively dislikes them!

Another of Labour's principal problems is that they haven't given any illusions of being a competent party of government since at least 2015. They are fortunate that the Lib Dems have been decimated recently - you only have to look up here at Scotland to see what has happened when a more competent centre-left party is available to vote for.

Brexit gives the current Labour leadership an excuse to avoid blaming themselves. It's easy to say that it was Brexit that cost them their northern English seats but polling data indicates that they lost approximately the same amount of remain votes and leave ones, perhaps even a little bit more. Corbyn was deeply unpopular with the electorate, and this election result was what was expected in 2017.
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Justvisited
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(Original post by Smack)
Corbyn was deeply unpopular with the electorate, and this election result was what was expected in 2017.
Which forces us to ask why 2017 wasn't like 2019 (which of course would then have meant no need for a 2019), and the answer is overwhelmingly, TM's cackhandedness in the campaign (the poll predictions of a big Tory win came before her ineptness came to light). If JC himself were such a liability that would have had effect in 2017, but instead it was dwarfed by the TM factor. So, how comes TM became PM in the first place? Why didn't BJ (the leading Leave campaigner) naturally emerge as the front runner back then? Looks like it was his lieutenant Michael Gove's doing, for whatever reason - which thereby let in TM with the sorry results of the next 42 months. So blame Gove.
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Arran90
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(Original post by Smack)
One of Labour's principal problems for a while now is that they have two key groups of people to win votes from, and it is very difficult, maybe even impossible, to appeal to both of these groups simultaneously. These two groups are the young, urban and educated, and the traditional working class in industrial areas, and there are little similarities between them other than both being nominally against conservative/free-market economics. If Labour want to gain back their traditional working class vote they have to STFU about identity politics, Palestine, and remain, and be more socially conservative, which would likely turn-off a lot of their young, educated and urban support. As I said, it's difficult to see how Labour can appeal to both at the same time. This election, Labour were the party of North London rather than the North of England. Some of the traditional working class gets the impression that Labour actively dislikes them!
A theory I have long held is that the majority of voters who want anti-capitalist economic policies are not the voters who want progressive social policies, and vice versa. There really is very little consumer demand for a broad left political party that combines anti-capitalist economic policies, with progressive social policies, with internationalism. Labour failed to latch onto this and how since 2000ish broad left political movements including the Socialist Alliance, Respect Party (after factoring out Muslims voting for other Muslims who aren't socialists), Left Unity, and TUSC have fallen flat on their faces, and utterly failed to appeal to the working classes.

After factoring out housing and tuition fees (and possibly free broadband!) the 20 something graduates from London and the trendy cities aren't really into socialist economic policies or those which appeals to the blue collar working class of old. They are a highly consumerist and image conscious demographic with a sense of entitlement to a 'cool' and handsomely paid job in the capitalist economy. They don't want to grind away in a factory or a coal mine like the blue collar working class of old did - and often wants their children to do. They are however solidly into progressive social policies.

This might be a bit of a bold thing to say, but IMO the vociferous policies towards supporting LGBT and the decriminalising abortion may well have turned off sizeable number voters from the working classes who view these policies as ideological whims of the progressive left rather than pragmatic policies. The C2 and D socioeconomic groups hold the least favourable views towards LGBT and are the most pro-life.

I'm not confident that the anti-Semitism turned off all that many voters from the working classes. Whilst they might have no enthusiasm for Palestine, defending Israel and the interests of the Jewish communities are low down on their list of priorities, and very few would cross the street to meet a Zionist or a Jew. I'm inclined to say that all the anti-Semitism row was bait and trap to divert Labour away from issues that the electorate saw as more important. After all, Labour and Jeremy Corbyn support a two-state solution (which means they support the existence of Israel); oppose the boycott of Israeli goods; and have adopted the (controversial) IHRA definition of anti-Semitism.
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Napp
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For a populist he seemed to be rather unpopular
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Arran90
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(Original post by Napp)
For a populist he seemed to be rather unpopular
I have referred to Jeremy Corbyn as being a Marmite populist. You either love him or hate him and hardly anybody is in between.
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the bear
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the British Public realised that they were being played for fools by the Stalinist Multi-Millionaire and told him where to stick his gulags.

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imlikeahermit
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Quite simply, Labour have fallen well out of touch with what normal working people want. They don't want a benefits system which rewards and encourages people not to work, they don't want increased taxes, they don't want everything nationalised. They want to work hard, for an honest pay and be able to spend that honest pay without a sizeable chunk been taken off them by the government. That is where Labour slipped up. They have absolutely no idea what their core vote wants anymore.
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anarchism101
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(Original post by Arran90)
After factoring out housing and tuition fees (and possibly free broadband!) the 20 something graduates from London and the trendy cities aren't really into socialist economic policies or those which appeals to the blue collar working class of old. They are a highly consumerist and image conscious demographic with a sense of entitlement to a 'cool' and handsomely paid job in the capitalist economy. They don't want to grind away in a factory or a coal mine like the blue collar working class of old did - and often wants their children to do. They are however solidly into progressive social policies.

This might be a bit of a bold thing to say, but IMO the vociferous policies towards supporting LGBT and the decriminalising abortion may well have turned off sizeable number voters from the working classes who view these policies as ideological whims of the progressive left rather than pragmatic policies. The C2 and D socioeconomic groups hold the least favourable views towards LGBT and are the most pro-life.
Your post isn't entirely without merit, but I think you're working on quite outdated class sterotypes. For instance, given you mention coal miners - the classic deep coal mine no longer exists in the UK. The UK is set to become coal-free this decade. Coal is a particularly dramatic example, but the principle applies across the board: to the extent "working class" can still be identified as a meaningful social category, it's increasingly not composed of miners and factory workers, but of call centre workers, checkout assistants, etc.

That said, to me it seems clear that we're dealing much more with a generational divide than a class one.
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Ferrograd
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I don't think social conservatism was really an issue, certainly not an issue in the UK compared to say the USA or even Australia. We don't have a massive religous population, and many Labour members are actually more socially conservative in private compared to tories. There are a lot of labour catholics, indeed RLB is, yet she still has a progressive agenda. I don't like the poltiical correctness though.
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Quady
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(Original post by Ferrograd)
Whilst campaigning, I actually bought myself round to agreeing with this and Corbyn's neutrality policy, because at the time I felt it was the best way to unite both sides of the party without alienating one side. Clearly, this did not work, and the leadership should have realised this.

To sum up; less free broadband, less Remainers, more Brexit, more working class!
So you thought it was the best idea but they should've known better?

Surely the NHS is more complex is more difficult than broadband....
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Ferrograd
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(Original post by Quady)
So you thought it was the best idea but they should've known better?

Surely the NHS is more complex is more difficult than broadband....
Yes, but nobody cares about free broadband. people care about the NHS.

Labour were in a catch 22 with brexit, they risked alienated either side of their party. that said, i would have rather alienated blairites, liberals, and trotskyites than the working class that our party is built on. Of course, starmer was the architect of that decision, and as a result I certainly won't be voting for him in the leadership elections. It'll be either RLB or Ian Lavery.
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Arran90
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(Original post by anarchism101)
Your post isn't entirely without merit, but I think you're working on quite outdated class sterotypes. For instance, given you mention coal miners - the classic deep coal mine no longer exists in the UK. The UK is set to become coal-free this decade. Coal is a particularly dramatic example, but the principle applies across the board: to the extent "working class" can still be identified as a meaningful social category, it's increasingly not composed of miners and factory workers, but of call centre workers, checkout assistants, etc.

That said, to me it seems clear that we're dealing much more with a generational divide than a class one.
Have a read of the following posts - or even the entire discussion:

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho...php?p=86537944

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho...php?p=86541100

I'm well aware that there are (at least) two separate working classes.

As for coal mining. The coal industry isn't completely dead. The coal is still in the ground and has been since the Carboniferous period - so what difference will a few decades make following the closure of a mine?. A few years ago some UKIPpers told me that coal mining will be a cornerstone of the future British economy and employment after leaving the EU!
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Arran90
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(Original post by Ferrograd)
I don't think social conservatism was really an issue, certainly not an issue in the UK compared to say the USA or even Australia. We don't have a massive religous population, and many Labour members are actually more socially conservative in private compared to tories. There are a lot of labour catholics, indeed RLB is, yet she still has a progressive agenda. I don't like the poltiical correctness though.
There's definitely a not very religious social right in Britain and people in the C2 and D socioeconomic groups are on average significantly more socially conservative than the Labour party has been since the early 1990s. These phenomena were driving forces behind the BNP, and to an extent UKIP after 2010, as its voter believed that the Labour Party had well and truly sold out to social liberalism of the progressive left and SJW types in London and the trendy towns.

What is intriguing is that although the proportion of indigenous white British people who are religious has declined year on year, the majority of ethnic minorities are religious in one way or another. A much lower proportion of ethnic minorities identify themselves as social liberals than indigenous white British people do. So far this doesn't really seem to have crossed paths with Labour in a similar way to what happened with the indigenous white British people in the C2 and D socioeconomic groups supporting the BNP and UKIP because of the sell out to social liberalism. There have been a few isolated examples like the Muslims protesting against the promotion of LGBT in schools and black Christians supporting the CPA, but that's really it. The far left in Britain is almost completely devoid of ethnic minorities and their support.
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