What sort of Brexit?

I’ll be taking a break from the blog over the next week while I have a summer rest (I may pop in if something interesting happens, but I’m going to try not to), but before I go a quick pointer to something I wrote over on the YouGov website on what the public think about Brexit.

The type of Brexit the public want is a tricky subject to poll. It will obviously be one of the dominant issues in British politics over the next few years, yet we also know so little of it. We don’t yet know with any confidence what the government’s aims or negotiating position will be, nor what other European countries will be willing to offer (or what they will want in return). Public opinion will be one of the limitations upon the government’s negotiations so it’s certainly important, but it’s hard to measure it at this stage when people have so little information about what’s on offer.

We tried to explore the issue in two ways. The first was to ask whether people thought various things would be acceptable trade-offs in exchange for continued British free trade with the EU. That suggests that the public would accept having to follow some EU trade rules, could be persuaded on immigration (33% think freedom of movement is desirable anyway, 19% a price worth paying, 33% a deal-breaker), but would object to Britain making a financial contribution to the EU (41% think it would be fine or a price worth paying, 44% think it would be a deal-breaker).

However, taking things individually risks being a little misleading. When it comes to it a deal will be a package of measures and will be judged as a whole. On that basis, I think the questions that present people with various scenarios and ask them to judge them as a whole are more enlightening.

By 44% to 32% people thought it would be bad for Britain if we simply left and had no trade deal with the remainder of the EU. A Norway-type deal, with Britain joining EFTA and maintaining free trade with EU in exchange for free-movement, a financial contribution and following trade rules is seen a little less negatively (35% good, 38% bad)… but perhaps more importantly, by 42% to 32% people would see it as not seen as honouring the result of the referendum. Finally, we asked about a Canada-type deal, where there is no freedom of movement or financial contribution, but only a limited free trade deal that excludes services. That was seen as both honouring the result of the referendum, and as positive for Britain.

Of course negotiations haven’t yet started and the actual deals that end upon on the table may very well differ from these examples. I suspect views are not very deeply held yet, and people may very well change their minds when deals start to take shape and politicians and the media start to debate them. The public’s starting point, however, seems to be that a limited trade deal is both the best solution and a solution that respects the referendum result. We shall see how that changes once the negotiations actually begin.

The full tabs are on the website here.


920 Responses to “What sort of Brexit?”

1 2 3 4 5 19
  1. I really expected something better than this

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/labour-mp-chi-onwurah-accuses-jeremy-corbyn-of-racial-discrimination-a7204081.html

    However, with apt he terrible news of booing it may just be enough.

    Whose turn is tomorrow morning?

  2. As to Brexit

    It is now nothing to do with referendum (or a second one as it won’t happen), but with the political process led by the government with all kinds of influences and constraints. The referendum was simply about (talk vent if it was not the cause and the outcome was not intended) authorising it.

    If the voters then refuse the outcome of the negotiations, they can throw out the government.

    I really can’t see a campaign on – uninformed voters/Tory trick/Corbyn’s laziness/UKIP negative campaign etc.

    It is a Brexit, whose outcome is uncertain and subject to future events, relationships, etc.

  3. ALEC
    Only when we actually know what that balance might be are we in any kind of sensible place to make a choise.

    I hope AW doesn’t regard this as heresy on a polling site, but why should May even consider what the polls say people want?

    I know you weren’t a supporter of Scottish independence, but at least the choice in the 2014 referendum was clear: retain the union of the kingdoms or resile it and become an independent state. Without doubt both sides made arguments which were less than accurate or even truthless, but the options were clear.

    That can hardly be said of the 2016 EU referendum, where the £350m/week claim was about the only “fact” which leave made consistently albeit inaccurately. In addition, we know from the Brexiteers themselves that there was no plan.

    Then there’s the problem of Northern Ireland. Making any change in the “status” of the NI population [eg: a “hard” border] would require either an NI-only referendum voting to agree to it, or resiling of the Belfast Agreement [an international treaty underwritten by the USA and EU]. Not to mention Gibraltar and Scotland.

    Unless May’s commitment to maintaining the “special Union” was only said for effect, she has two basic options:

    1. Agree an HK style “1 country 2 systems” deal for NI, Gibraltar and Scotland.

    2. Finding a deal which the 48% who voted remain plus at least 3% who voted to leave would accept.

    Full EEA would seem to fit the bill fairly well, unless she can negotiate a deal to reduce freedom of movement whilst remaining in the EU.

    The latter would risk splitting her own party and making UKIP a real threat, so I would guess she’ll eventually go for EEA, presumably when the Chevening Three have failed miserably to negotiate the nirvana they promised.

  4. “Jeremy Corbyn plans to stamp his authority on the Labour Party by giving hundreds of thousands of party members a greater say on policy through regular ‘plebiscites’ on controversial topics, it is understood.

    In a move that would help sideline moderate Labour MPs, Mr Corbyn hopes to strengthen party members’ influence over policy if he wins the leadership by holding email polls of members. ”

    DT

    Labour’s Manifesto 2020 GR

    “Our Policies on everything will be decided by Labour Party Members-when we ask them what they should be.”

    Trust them-Vote Labour.

    If the MPs can’t stop this guy , they can wave goodbye to anything they would recognise as The Parliamentary Labour Party.

  5. BARBAZENZERO

    “The latter would risk splitting her own party and making UKIP a real threat, so I would guess she’ll eventually go for EEA, presumably when the Chevening Three have failed miserably to negotiate the nirvana they promised.”

    How do you square that comment with May’s very clear commitment to reducing immigration to the 10s of thousands. A Canada style deal would fit the bill better, as those polled seemed to perceive.

  6. THE OTHER HOWARD
    A Canada style deal would fit the bill better, as those polled seemed to perceive.

    Fair comment, if there are no service industries operating cross-border in NI, although it would depend also on the CTA continuing.

    In that event, NI would probably remain in the UK for now without a referendum. It would also probably be enough for Gibraltar.

    I suspect that indyref2 would still go ahead in Scotland, though, but possibly with less chance of success.

  7. Barbazenzero

    “It would also probably be enough for Gibraltar.”

    But the Spanish position remains that they would veto the broad outline of any Brexit negotiation if the UK insisted on including Gibraltar in the process.

  8. Colin

    To be fair, Smith proposed that all policies would have to be approved by the Conference and it would be binding to MPs and a Labour government.

    He also proposed a shadow of the shadow cabinet, made up by members to advise the MPs (then, he said, we would have avoided the Iraq war).

    So, they have to stop Smith too. :-)

  9. Good evening all from rural Hampshire.

    THE OTHER HOWARD
    TANCRED
    “I note that you continue to insult 51.9% of people who voted to leave the EU. I am informed and well educated with a degree and certainly wash, and yet I voted to leave the EU and would do so again. The same goes for millions of other people. How dare you insult us as you do. This is a site for reasoned debate on polling related matters. I suggest you take you childish rants elswhere”
    ________

    You’re wasting your time with this individual. A few nights ago we had quite a lengthy debate on NATO/Russia and Putin and some of us had quite strong views on the issue but the debate didn’t turn nasty and regardless of peoples views everyone put really good points across..

    That’s what happens when people like TANCRED are not around.

  10. New You Gov survey of the reasons why precious Labour supporters have moved away: https://yougov.co.uk/news/2016/08/22/labours-lost-voters/

    The word-cloud representation of their answers is quite powerful.

  11. BARBAZENZERO

    Both sides were economical with the truth in the referendum campaign. Remember Project Fear?

  12. D’oh, typo: that should have been “previous” – though come to think of it “precious” works too, given their rarity value.

  13. Apparently Lord Ashcroft calls anti Brexit remain voters…. “Remoaners”

  14. Muddy Waters

    I think, it is correct. However, the graphical representation (due to readable words) is misleading – it gives more presence to Corbyn than the 29% (which is high enough).

  15. Muddy Waters

    It is quite possible that some of the 18% also said Corbyn.

    The problem with word clouds can be demonstrated by

    “I wouldn’t have left the LP just because of Corbyn, but the fight between Corbyn and the PLP, and I don’t think either Corbyn or the MPs can win, leaving the LP in shambles.”

    You can see what would be in the word cloud.

    However, I don’t have any doubt that Corbyn turns off many previous Labour voters.

  16. I suppose this sample must be all Blairites.

    https://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/po6sxcblkj/InternalResults_160821_LostLabour.pdf

    ….and its only 200. Look at the millions flocking to sit at Jeremy’s feet.?

  17. Colin

    Muddy Waters shared it earlier (the 200 former Labour voters).

  18. I see the Scottish Labour leader Kez Doogdale has come out and supported Owen Smith. With such a colossus backing Smith ol Corby must be quaking in his Matalan shoes.

    Also the entire Scottish Westminster parliamentary Labour party has come out and supported Smith. Tough times for ol Corby but I still reckon most of the 6.8 million Labour members will back him.

    .

  19. Lazlo

    Yes, fair points. It’s not especially nuanced. The headline volume of references can conceal a range of intentions in the answers.

    But still, a strong visual representation about what’s putting off potential Labour voters: the prominence of “Corbyn” (and, separately, “Corbin”), “Leadership”, and “Mess” tells an unsurprising story.

  20. ALLAN

    @” 6.8 million Labour members ”

    Blimey-have they done a late Buy One Get Ten Free offer ?

  21. In that latest YG table, the text of the question is –

    “Earlier in May, you told us you would vote for Labour but today you say you [PARTY]. Can you please tell us why this is?”

    Presumably, they are partying because of / despite / to ignore the Olympics.

    Seems reasonable.

  22. Colin

    “I suppose this sample must be all Blairites”

    In polarised discussions, debates the middle is often quickly destroyed, followed by the fragmentation of the two poles.

    By Smith saying essentially the same as Corbyn (with the exception of Trident and the addition of negotiating with ISIS) the polarisation is accelerated, because it creates Corbyn and ABC. I guess in the next debate in Glasgow Smith will accuse Corbyn with not being quick and radical enough (I’m quite sure that it will be one of his points). It is a standard technique, not unique to politics.

    Three things.

    One, the debate was necessary, inevitable in the LP.
    Two, it got out of hand in a number of ways, and it can seriously damage the LP.
    Three, if it can destroy the LP, then it was probably ready for destruction …

  23. COLIN

    “Blimey-have they done a late Buy One Get Ten Free offer ?”
    _______

    Clearly there has been some sort of offer. ;-)

  24. Allan Christie

    “I see the Scottish Labour leader Kez Doogdale has come out and supported Owen Smith. ”

    Just after Sadiq Khan did – what a coincidence!

    Cynics might think that the plotters were choreographing these statements around the issue of ballot papers. Mind you, those are the same cynics who made the unwarranted assumption that the resignations from the Shadow Cabinet were also part of a carefully orchestrated media campaign.

    When will those on the left, finally realise that those on the Right are right?

    And where is Carwyn Jones’ statement of support in favour of anyone?

  25. My visualisation of the LP is not word cloud, but a cliff.

    Essentially, because of the polarisation of the debate, the first lot to be pushed over the cliff are the genuine right of Blair people, then the Blair, then the rightist opportunists, then the opportunists – if it cannot be stopped, the cliff will be filled up, and then the leftists are pushed into the cliff on the other side of plateau, and as there are nobody else to be pushed down, the remain on the bottom.

    I do think that the primary driver of this is objective, however, I also think that it has already gone beyond the objective needs due to individual and group actions, so instead of pushing the first two groups over the cliff (and hence they would be in the bottom) it is driver further essentially on an emotional-vocabulary basis.

    It can be reversed, but for about two and a half months I haven’t thought that there was much chance for the reverse. If the Corbynites win, they must have an iron will, which they don’t, and competence (that they must have), otherwise the last phase of my visualisation will happen.

  26. @ Laszlo

    ‘Whose turn is tomorrow morning?’

    I’m plumping for Carwyn Jones .. and then in the afternoon, someone like Seema Malhotra… covering the Welsh and BAME constituencies.

  27. OLDNAT
    But the Spanish position remains that they would veto the broad outline of any Brexit negotiation if the UK insisted on including Gibraltar in the process.

    They have certainly said that. Whether they would act upon it is another matter. Now that they have a government after their GE I accept that’s somewhat more likely than it was three months ago.

    OTOH, if the UK deal overall is acceptable to Germany & France I doubt they’ll rock the boat.

  28. OLDNAT

    From the MSM to the wee potty cleaner at Labour HQ there has been an orchestrated vendetta towards ol Corby yet despite all that has been flung at him he’s still frustrating the naysayers. I even think Corby said he enjoy’s democracy within the Labour party….he’s relishing in it. I’m not a Corby supporter but parliament does need a leader with an alternative vision so all voters can be represented.

    And yes what of Carwyn Jones? Maybe he has secretly joined the Mormons in Welsh UKIP;-)

  29. PETE B
    Both sides were economical with the truth in the referendum campaign. Remember Project Fear?

    I certainly do. There’s no point in re-running those issues here and now. When and If indyref2 becomes relevant will be quite soon enough to examine those issues again.

    I only used it as example of a referendum where both possible results were meaningful.

  30. Allan Christie

    “And yes what of Carwyn Jones? Maybe he has secretly joined the Mormons in Welsh UKIP;-)”

    That must be it!

    Surely it can’t just be coincidence that Own shares the same surname as the founder of the Mormon faith?

  31. ALLAN CHRISTIE
    Also the entire Scottish Westminster parliamentary Labour party has come out and supported Smith.

    Has Alex Rowley just switched sides?

    The BBC had him still supporting Corbyn this morning but have unpersoned him.

    The Courier’s Split at the top of Scottish Labour as MSPs defy Kezia Dugdale to back Jeremy Corbyn of today includes:

    In a statement co-signed by fellow MSPs Neil Findlay and Richard Leonard, Mid Scotland and Fife representative Alex Rowley slammed attempts by MPs to dislodge the UK leader from his post.

    They also have a photo of Dugdale & Rowley “in happier times”.

  32. ALLAN CHRISTIE

    Ooops. Just re-read your post and noticed your “Westminster” qualification.

    You’re 1/1 there!

  33. OLDNAT

    “Surely it can’t just be coincidence that Own shares the same surname as the founder of the Mormon faith?”
    ______

    I don’t know what it is with Smith and Mormons and misogynist’s.
    He said..

    “When I was younger, I thought Mormons were lucky because of that multiple wife thing. I thought it must be great to have as many sexy wives as they wanted.
    “Then I got married, and now I just feel sorry for them” ;-)

  34. @Lazslo – “I really expected something better than this…”

    I’m not sure why. Now we have corroboration from both parties, including now from someone who remains in Corbyn’s cabinet, of the details surrounding the complete mess Corbyn made of the reshuffle.

    When this was first raised, you claimed that it’s an easy mistake, pointing to the fact that Blair inadvertently ‘sacked’ Angela Eagle once by mistake. However, there is really no comparison between the two episodes. In the Corbyn case, we no know that both individuals spent two months trying to speak to the messiah and seeking a sign after the mistake, which rather elevates Corbyn’s leadership into the realms of farce.

    However, I do think the headlines in the Independent and Graun are a little ahead of what was actually said. Onwurah said a number of things,including there was “nothing socialist about incompetence” and “If this had been any of my previous employers in the public and private sectors, Jeremy might well have found himself before an industrial tribunal for constructive dismissal, probably with racial discrimination thrown in – given that only 5% of MPs are black and female, picking on us two is statistically interesting to say the least,”

    On a straightforward point of fact, I would say she’s probably right. That isn’t to say that Corbyn is actually prejudiced – he is the messiah, so obviously he can’t be – but in the real world if this did go to a tribunal I think it would have been extraordinarily difficult for him.

    That’s the trouble with being incompetent – it has all sorts of unintended consequences!

  35. @OLDNAT

    ““Now that’s what I call winning!!! Well done Team GB & all our Commonwealth friends, now for the Trade Agreements….”, she declaims.”

    What a daft cow. Does she still live in the 1920s?

  36. Interesting to see highly-regarded Owen Jones on TV talking about the Leadership debate. Owen has pointed to what he called some “uncomfortable questions” that Corbyn needs to answer.

  37. @THE OTHER HOWARD

    Careful now, watch your blood pressure……..

  38. @Barbazenzero – “I know you weren’t a supporter of Scottish independence, but at least the choice in the 2014 referendum was clear: retain the union of the kingdoms or resile it and become an independent state. Without doubt both sides made arguments which were less than accurate or even truthless, but the options were clear.”

    Can’t let you get away with that one!

    No clear idea on currency.
    No certainty on EU membership.
    Dispute over levels of debt to be inherited.

    Just three big areas where the Scottish public had no real idea what the choice was. Just like Brexit!

    The £350m a week claim by the Brexit camp is right in the same ballpark as claims that Scottish demographics meant pensions would be more affordable than in the UK, oil price projections, no additional cuts would be needed, etc etc.

    I saw no real difference in the quality of SNP claims and the Brexit claims, if I’m being honest, but I do find it curiously affirming the pro Scottish independence supporters have managed to convince themselves of the superiority of their campaign over the Brexit one.

    It fits with the recurring theme of the Indyref.

  39. Prof Howard

    “highly-regarded Owen Jones”

    Indeed, many do offer him high regard. However, so do many people have high regard for Jeremy Corbyn, Arlene Foster, Martin McGuiness etc.

    Since you know that as well as I do, and normally use words wisely and carefully, I suspect that you are extracting the urine! :-)

  40. That YG poll is rather significant. Only a poll, and these can be wrong, but it certainly gives some support to those arguing that Corbyn is a liability, although caution is always needed with questions of this type.

  41. Alec

    Since the YG poll also “gives some support to those arguing that” the dissension caused by the plotters has been the liability, you are wise to say “caution is needed”.

    That you also assert that the “YG poll is rather significant” seems strangely inappropriate, therefore.

  42. ALEC
    Can’t let you get away with that one!

    There will be plenty of time to re-examine those claims from both sides if and when indyref2 comes along.

    The point was simply that [at least until the “vow”] the choice was between no change and independence – something plenty of nations have transitioned to,

    The EU referendum had the status quo option but no specification of what “leave” meant.

  43. @Oldnat – why strange? By quite a considerable margin, Corbyn comes out as being the biggest single issue causing Labour voters to leave. That is significant.

    The caution is required because questions of this type can sometimes mislead, but here, only 10% responded to the Labour is disunited statement, which suggests that the plotters are well down the list when it comes to reasons why Labour is losing voters.

  44. MUDDY WATERS

    New You Gov survey of the reasons why precious Labour supporters have moved away:

    https://yougov.co.uk/news/2016/08/22/labours-lost-voters/

    The word-cloud representation of their answers is quite powerful.

    The trouble with these semi-qualitative surveys (the sample size is only 228, it can hardly be called a poll) is that they tend to reflect what is in the media at the time. Given the unanimity of their attacks on Corbyn, it’s not surprising that his name comes top:

    https://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/po6sxcblkj/InternalResults_160821_LostLabour.pdf

    The only odd thing is that it only scores 29% in the circumstances – about the same as those complaining about the state of the Party (‘mess’ + ‘divided’) or less if you include some other options. It suggests that either he’s not as toxic as his detractors claim, or that leaders aren’t as important as is conventionally claimed. Certainly May becoming PM does seem to have had much effect either among this group.

    The other thing that fails to register much is the EU Referendum with only 7% giving it as the reason – and there could be a number of possible ones depending on whether people were Leave or Remain. Given that the reason to try to depose Corbyn is alleged to his performance in that (though there’s not much detail on what he should have done), it suggests that the public don’t agree.

    The only cross-break we are given is for Leave/Remain, so there’s no detail of where the respondents were from or any other demographic info. The article states that these were drawn from “nearly 1,000 members of the public who told us earlier in the year that they would vote for Labour in a general election” while the table is more ambiguous “228 adults who said they would vote for Labour in an election in May, but now say something else”. Whether this means they are drawn from unpublished polls or just from the few that were put out (mainly Scottish ones) may distort things as many in Scotland who voted Labour (on constituency) may have been doing so tactically and so you would expect them to now support another Party

    The actual article gives a number of very sensible provisos in addition to what I have pointed out and as far as I can tell the ‘word cloud’ is actually no such thing but simply an illustration. A proper word cloud would involved transcribed interviews and so on, while this seems simply based on an extra question with predetermined options slipped into the regular commercial YouGovs asked over a period at the start of the month.

  45. ALEC

    @CA – “Its fair to say that its slightly risky for him to throw away his non blairite credentials…….”
    Ah! I understand. In your world, you either support Corbyn or are a Blairite.
    How very Soviet.

    You’re missing the very obvious point that Khan (and indeed Dugdale) didn’t have to say anything. Both could have said that, as effectively leaders of the Labour Party in their particular parts of the UK, they would happily work with either of the two excellent candidates etc etc… The only person who seems to be demanding that people come down on one side or another is you. Which is apparently Soviet (though that would surely be insisting everyone came down on the same side?).

    But Rachel is right in that, even before his election, there was a certain scepticism about Khan among a lot of Labour activists in London, he was seen as perhaps more interested in personal advancement than anything else (maybe you could argue that s ‘Blairite’). So by choosing to align himself with one side rather than remaining a statesmanlike distance, he may well lose friends. Unless he does something really stupid, it probably won’t make a difference, but it’s still a risk and at the least might make it more difficult to ‘do a Boris’ in a few years time.

  46. Alec

    Or to put it another way, 29 out of 200 mentioned Corbyn as the reason, whereas 171 didn’t with 45 mentioning things like mess, divided, no confidence in party and so on. So maybe if the PLP had got behind Corbyn from the beginning and supported him, we wouldn’t be in this position at all. Even those giving Corbyn as the reason might have thought differently if the PLP had got behind him.

    Incidentally, Alec, I can’t understand why you have such a fixation with Corbyn as demonstrated over the last few weeks. Did he do something to you in a previous life?

  47. Alec

    40% of the 200 responses were categorised by YG staff as being “Labour are a mess / shambles” or “I’m not confident in Labour at the moment” or “Labour are too divided”. Those are not mutually exclusive categories [1]

    Some of those will blame Corbyn, some the plotters, some the lot of them. Some won’t give a damn because they don’t pay much attention, but they’ve seen news headlines.

    It would be very incautious to draw your preferred conclusion, and claim it is significant!

    [1] As anyone who has coded open ended responses to a survey will know, it can be very hard to allocate responses to categories that only have a nuanced difference.

  48. Alec

    I suggest you should reflect. For example:

    ” Corbyn comes out as being the biggest single issue causing Labour voters to leave. That is significant”

    You are making the assumption that an organisation has eternal attributes, i.e. that that LP and this LP are the same or that should be the same, or they should represent the electorate.

    None of these are warranted. One could argue that the membership composition of the LP changed to such an extent that triggered Corbyn’s election (we have plenty of evidence for this) and this, in combination with other factors, triggered votes by formerly Labour voters to vote another party or do not vote. But it is actually quite normal. Parties go through these changes, LP itself, but also SNP, or the LibDem party.

    Irrespective to Corbyn’s personal or political qualities (I would say that I’m a more consequent critique of the latter than you are, and many of the “moderates”) there is a fundamental, and I believe flawed, assumption: Labour is “the” opponent of the conservatives, and hence if Labour can’t win with Corbyn, he has to be replaced.

    I believe it is a visual picture of the past that is still conveyed by the HoC of the two sides. It is dated, and outmoded.

    Now, to make it clear: I don’t think Corbyn can do what he set out. However, it is not an argument for not doing it, and it is not an argument for replacing him. The reason he can’t do it is simply – the Labour Party (including the Corbynista, even if they are a majority). The task he set requires such a hard work, probably lasting for 15 years that his followers seem to be reluctant to undertake (and I don’t blame them. After all, one of the French socialist songs from 1946 said “we will turn the world around by tomorrow” – well, no.).

    It doesn’t mean that it won’t happen, just it will take a much longer time, objective circumstances pushing individuals to take a stance (Khan did it on Sunday and I wouldn’t condemn him for it, only that it was the part of the plot).

    It is really a business problem. There are 40% who didn’t vote in the last election, and there were 6% whom the Tories took (I’m generous here), and then the UKIP.

    My argument is very simple. To talk to the majority of the 40%, the LP has to change. Such a change would enable autonomy to the local organisations, and the movement (there is very little at the moment, in spite of the headlines). The route to the 6% is through capturing the majority of the 40%. So, the LP can have a very simple central message, and the complexity of it is resolved through localisation.

    It may be enough for Labour to win alone, but it is not the point. The point is being the leader of a heterogeneous voting base voting for different parties on the basis of values, convenience, traditions, etc. It could mean a coalition, it could mean Labour alone.

    I don’t think this question would be resolved by this leadership election (which can still go either way), unless there is a strong coalition behind changing the LP and accepting a setback (almost certain). However, my interpretation of the social changes (especially the fact that those who were 19 in 2012 will be 27 in 2020 and 32 in 2015) mean that these changes will be forced through.

  49. Roger Mexico

    “Which is apparently Soviet (though that would surely be insisting everyone came down on the same side?).”

    In the last topic, on the last page, after editing out the party name, faction names and years I put out an excerpt from the “History of the Communist Party. Short Course”. The parallels with the current labour debate are quite strong.

    In any case, these sort of debates, struggles were constant in the CPs (which you would expect in one-party states, only that the proceedings didn’t make to the public – with exceptions).

    However, there is some sort of cultist attribute on both sides. Labelling everyone Blarites is a convenient way to create demarcations, which is cultist. On the other hand people saying that they would Smith, although they don’t know what he stands for (as they didn’t get free ice cream) apart from knowing that his surname is not Corbyn is also cultist, and it is also based on creating demarcations.

  50. Laszlo

    Isn’t “creating demarcations” precisely what political parties (and any other type of brand marketing) set out to do?

    There may be minimal differences between their aims, and the policies they plan to use to achieve those aims.

    However, unless perceptions of difference are created, then there is no space to sell your product.

1 2 3 4 5 19