THE BLACK OPINION: Jeremy Corbyn may not be a Jedi, but he may defeat the Empire
You may well have seen the image going around these last couple of days of Alec Guinness, in his Obi-Wan Kenobi garb from Star Wars, and the striking similarity Jeremy Corbyn bears to him. If you live in the UK, chances are unless you pay absolutely no attention to either politics or the daily news, you will know who Corbyn is. On Saturday he was elected leader of the Labour Party, by accepted wisdom the second biggest political party in Britain, in a 60% margin victory as voted by his peers and registered members of the party. Scratch a little further and you'll realise it has taken almost a feat of Jedi power to pull this off.
Why? I hear you ask. Who is this Corbyn bloke and why should I care? Well if you're not British, you probably shouldn't, and you certainly won't. I don't blame you. Brits only pay a passing glance at political news in the U.S. (laughing at almost everything Donald Trump says or does) or in Europe (going "oooh that's worrying" whenever Alexis Tsipras tells us the Greek economy is going bust, before we flick over to the The Great British Bake Off). In short, Corbyn has achieved what many would imagine the impossible, and you can be damn sure a TV drama at least, if not a movie written by Peter Morgan, will be on your screens in the next couple of years about it.
You see Labour were trounced in the General Election this year. Not as badly as the Liberal Democrats, who after five years of a 'coalition' with the victorious Conservatives were decimated (mainly because their leader was a lying c*nt). Labour nonetheless lost big time and the Tories routed them, seizing more control over Parliament than they had in almost two decades. Their leader, Ed Miliband (who looked like the awkward blend of an alien robot and Lurch from The Addams Family), resigned after he realised what everyone else had months ago - he was no Prime Minister in waiting. The party was thrown into chaos, with a few would-be leaders stepping up and another couple stepping down, the career savvy ones, who realised the next leader was basically a steward. They were designed to steer the party through choppy waters, rebuild a bit, lose the 2020 Election, allow the *real* winners to claim the throne, and then go for a title shot in 10 years. That was the plan. Yvette Cooper, Andy Burnham, Liz Kendall all stepped up, all perfectly decent at what they do, all leftovers from the Tony Blair victory years & all typically featureless just left of centre politicians. You know, the kind who show up on Question Time a couple of times a year and peddle the Same Old Shit.
Then, someone suggested putting Jeremy Corbyn in the mix.
It was meant as, basically, a political joke. Appeasement to the 'lefties'. You see in the UK, the Tories are centre to right wing, all about Establishment values & capitalist ideas, basically if you're rich "great! Welcome!" and if you're poor "fuck you! Scum!". Labour were, historically, to the left - socialist without going too far and becoming a bunch of mad, "let's starve everyone to death, that's equality!" Communists like Stalin or Mao. Only in the 80's, everyone wanted 'stuff'. Computers, TV's, holidays. Socialism, whereby people basically work for the good of the bigger picture, became unpopular. Labour leaders like Neil Kinnock ranted & raved. Old lefties like Tony Benn were left to shout angrily in union corners. The world moved on. Then Blair started 'New Labour', keeping some of the socialist values but also embracing capitalism, basically saying "you can have both! You lucky people!". And it worked... for a bit. Then they spent billions bombing the shit out of the Middle East, lost control of the banks, and ran out of money. Recession followed! Gordon Brown took over and had all the charisma of a lobotomised Chewbacca & the Tories/Liberals swooped in to 'save the day'.
All the while, like Obi-Wan in the caves of Tatooine evading Tusken Raiders and the eyes of the Jedi-exterminating Empire, Jeremy Corbyn and the lefties—long exiled to political oblivion—waited and watched.
You see the coalition didn't really save the day. They stated privatising everything. It's a wonder they haven't privatised *you*, yes YOU reader. They started letting off corporations from paying billions in tax, letting bankers get big bonuses, and all the while the poor started getting poorer, more food banks popped up, loads more people got stuck on benefits. 2015 came around and surely, we wouldn't want five more years of this?! Why would we vote them back in? Ironically enough our old enemies, the Scots, they warned us. We didn't listen. Labour weren't saying anything new, anything different, Miliband basically was saying "trust me lads, I've got an idea" like Michael Caine in The Italian Job, without explaining how he was going to get the van off the cliff. Millions of voters (those who did bother, which weren't many) decided 'better the Devil you know' and the Tories won by a landslide. Madness, you might say. Effectively akin to if, at the end of Return of the Jedi, the galaxy had gotten a vote as to whether they wanted Princess Leia or Darth Vader in charge... and they chose Vader. Even after all the trouble, struggle, strife and pain, they still let the Empire rule. That happened this May.
And all the while, Corbyn waited... and watched...
So when, getting back to the subject, when he ended up on the Labour election ballot, you might ask why anyone would think that was a bad idea? Surely a guy like him, who stands for such diametric opposite ideas to the Tories *and* New Labour, would be a breath of fresh air? That he might suggest a fairer, more equal society that isn't driven by the acquisition of wealth, austerity and corporate power? Thousands agreed. Almost none were in the Labour Party. They watched, stunned, as Obi-Wan Corbyn got on his Millennium Falcon and began to soar, creating a slipstream of followers buoyed by his older concepts yet almost feel like new ideas, certainly to a younger generation growing up in a world of unequal distribution of wealth. A 66 year old rebel backbencher, only put on the ballot as a joke, in just a few months has become one of the most influential people in British politics, right under the noses of the colleagues who simply laughed at the very idea of that ever happening.
Now if that's not a sign of Jedi mind powers, I have no idea what is. Anyway, you don't need to see any more information. These aren't the politicians you're looking for. Move along...