As various media types were coming to grips with the UK election results I actually heard something I agreed with (not common when I listen to CNN, Sky or BBC which isn’t often for that very reason). I don’t remember who said it but it went something like this:
“It seems like this is the results that we expected in 2017.”
And I realized, yes. Exactly that. It had been expected that the election would be devastating for Labour and May would get a big victory and be able to do some version of Brexit (essentially all the downsides of EU membership and none of the benefits).
Instead, the Tory victory was much smaller than expected, they had a work with a nasty Unionist party in Northern Ireland and Labour surprised everyone with a much better than expected second place.
Then the world was treated to parliamentary deadlock and the UK spectacularly failing to leave the UK until Boris Johnson called elections and…. that was all she wrote. The Remainers have shut up about a “People’s Vote” (for a few minutes at least) and Labour failed in truly impressive fashion to build on their 2017 breakthrough.
But back in 2017 Corbyn managed to speak to real concerns people had based in some kind of class consciousness and social solidarity while this time he’d been co-opted by woke idiots and refused to support the idea of Brexit (strongly supported by traditional Labour voters). Instead he treated the world to his pronouns and failed to deny being anti-Semitic in any kind of believable way.
Now everybody’s blaming him (with good reason) but in retrospect his failure is part and parcel of the collapse of the Center(ish) Left in Europe which has thrown its support fully behind international capital and open borders and can’t pretend to care about working class citizens which are held in the deepest contempt. He stalled the process in 2017 but gave way to it in 2019.
If Johnson manages to get Brexit done then he’ll have a bunch of problems to deal with and he’ll probably fail. With any luck, Labour will manage to extract its head from its collective ass and learn from this and be ready to lead again…. but I’m not gonna hold my breath.