The campaign of MP Jeremy Corbyn, based on anti-austerity program, and opinions polls which credit him his strategy, annoys the major part of Labour leaders, who raise the spectre of "chaos" if the representative of the left wing of the party would became the new chief of the Labour party.
For the first time since the 90s, the right wing of Labour is competed by the left wing. After the defeat of the party in the last general elections on May 7th, with only 230 deputies for the House of Commons (the fatest failure since 1987), Ed Miliband resigns as leader of the party. A new direction has to be elected in September, establishing the opposition in front of the conservative governement, led by David Cameron. Among the four candidates for being the leader, Jeremy Corbyn stands out.
Against New Labour
This man is a MP, member of the left wing of the Labour. He's known by British people for his opposition towards all governements since the 1980s, even Tony Blair and Gordon Brown's ones, who belong to the same party. But they represented the right wing of it, called New Labour, which padlocked the direction for more than 20 years and the coming of Blair. A famous example is the war on Iraq. Corbyn was a member of Stop the War coalition, an association which criticized Blair's decision for participating in that war with the US led by George W. Bush at that time, and for the false reasons called by Western belligerents. And now, an anti-austerity program, with more investment in the public sector, more rights for workers and unions (the contrary of the actual governement in fact), and backed by several economists, who consider he's not an extremist.
The senior executives of Labour and the other candidates, coming from the New Labour, threatened by Corbyn's campaign, react only by unresting the fear of "chaos" within the party if Corbyn takes the leadership. Blair himself calls to Labour activists for not voting Corbyn, otherwise, Labour could live again hours of internal divisions as it was the case in the 80s, while Tory n°10 Margaret Thatcher said: "There is no alternative!". Thus, the slogan of Corbyn's competitors is: "Anyone but Corbyn". Not so original because in France, the French Socialist party in 2008 used the same thing against Ségolène Royal ("Tout sauf Ségolène". In English: "Anyone but Ségolène"). However, Mrs Royal was more right-wing than the other candidates for the leadership and the left wing, with Jean-Luc Mélenchon, prefered leaving the party and form its own party, the Left party (Parti de gauche in French).
New Labour = copy of the Tories
The heirs of Blair and Brown consider that an election of Corbyn as leader of the Labour party is the wrong lecture of the defeat on last May, because they think the party was too leftist during Miliband's leadership, loosing middle-class voters, the only target of the party since the 90s. Pretending that would be dishonest, for several reasons:
- The differences between Labour and Tories are vanishing. They defend a program of budgetary stability (othr name for austerity). They target the middle-class and the City, in order to give trust. They consider capitalism as the single economic system that would be efficient for everybody (but mainly for a few persons, the dominating class). But the only difference between both is Tories are converted to capitalism for a longer time than Labour. And thus, middle-class and upper class prefer the original to the copy.
- Labour forgets the working-class vote for more than 20 years. Thus, working-class voters in England, Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland have 3 choices: abstention, voting for far-right parties (Ukip for instance), voting for parties leftist than Labour. And the last case explained a lot the historic success of the Scottish national party, with 56 of the 59 seats reserved to Scotland in the House of Commons on last May.
Battle of Europe
After the election, the future Labour chief will have to position about the referendum of June 2016 - if I remember well -, when British voter will indicate if they wanna keep on within the European Union (EU) or stop it. And if the scenario is a victory of the "No", meaning Britain would leave the EU, a new referendum would be organized in Scotland about independance since everybody knows that Scottish people are pro-european, whereas English people are more eurosceptical. For the moment, wait and see...