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From Pfizer lobbyist to Citizen Smith

by Calvin Tucker

“THE economic circumstances demand that we seek more fundamental solutions than tinkering around the edges of capitalism.”

Not my words, but the words of Angela Eagle.

And then we have Owen Smith and his 20-point manifesto of borrow and spend — which even includes a wealth tax which the Morning Star pointed out was lifted straight out of the programme of the Communist Party.

I’m perplexed.

Two weeks ago the narrative was that Labour could never win on a left-wing ticket.

Now, it seems, the people’s flag can’t be red enough.

The Bitterites, as John Prescott dubbed them, have overnight metamorphosed into the Moderate Popular Front, and the Pfizer lobbyist and Welfare Bill abstainer has recast himself as Citizen Smith.

Except this time round he’s shouting: “Power to the PLP!”

You couldn’t make it up if you tried.

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so let’s take Smith’s Damascene conversion as a tribute to Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership in moving the centre of political gravity to the left.

These moderates talk about winning elections. Yet despite their disloyalty and sabotage, Jeremy has won four out of four by-elections, four out of four mayors, and finished first in the local elections.

And we were drawing ahead in the polls when they began their choreographed resignations.

I’m a big fan of fair elections. As a way of resolving differences, they sure beat staging a coup, banning meetings, disenfranchising 130,000 members, and pricing the poor out of a vote.

Seven years ago, I was travelling with the first lady of Honduras during a military coup.

The army stopped our convoy and threatened to shoot us. But the first lady got out of her car and began walking towards the line of soldiers until we were quite literally looking down the barrels of their guns.

Then an extraordinary thing happened. Like the Biblical parting of seas, they fanned out and let us pass.

As we went through, she said to me: “They are scared of us because we are not scared of them.”

Whether the gun held to your head is a real one, or in the case of the Labour Party, a figurative one, the lesson is the same: never give in to threats and intimidation.

So cast your vote with pride for the undefeated leader of our party: man of steel and integrity, Jeremy Corbyn.


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