Saturday, January 02, 2010

Polly Put the Kettle On

Someone called Toby Flux (I kid you not) has responded to Polly Toynbee's Guardian article in which calls for Gordon Brown to be ousted from the Labour leadership if Labour is to stand any chance at the next election. Flux has written a piece for LabourList which is more of a rant than a response. You almost expect every sentence to start with the words "And another thing...".

Why am I highlighting this article? Because it is an example of the desperate thinking pervading the Labour Party at the moment. All it is is an attack on Polly for, well, being Polly. Fair enough you might think, but Labour needs to give people a positive reason to vote for them, and as Polly rightly identifies, Brown finds it almost impossible to do that.

UPDATE: John Rentoul has a rather aposite blogpost...

Polly Toynbee today launches a vicious, personal and entirely justified attack on herself. First she criticises Gordon Brown for destroying the Labour Party. Then ...

Remember them? The death-wish brigade that let him do it.

Yes, Polly, we do:

Every one of the dire predictions against him [Brown] has proved false. Blairites said he would never be agile enough, but in just three months he has coped with crisis after crisis and emerged all the stronger. They said people would never warm to his manner, but he has charmed and pleased with his blend of seriousness and sincerity.


Anonymous said...

Be fair, Dale. Polly was Gordon's biggest cheerleader during the late Bliar years - do you not remember her ranting about Gordon the Viking who would create a socialist utopia with his profligate spending?

Whatever Brown's shortcomings (and they are many), Polly is wholly complicit in them. Polly, more than any other single 'old media' commentator, championed the coup against Bliar.

She was wrong in backing Brown. She's been wrong on every major issue of the last decade. Why, in the name of all that's holy, should anyone on any side of the political divide listen to her now? Apart from anything else, is there anyone out there who is actually stupid enough to believe that the electorate will rally behind Labour if they only stage another and have another unelected prime minister?

Silent Hunter said...

I think the LabourLost lot are just sore because Polly has always banged on about how great Labour are at looking out for "the poor", from the safety of her Villa in Tuscany.

I think the word HYPOCRITE is appropriate.

Indeed; any mention of the "T" word on her threads usually gets you an immediate deletion if not a immediate ban from the laughably misnamed - Comment is Free.

It's actually a real shame that a complete tosser like Matt Seaton has allowed Cif to become a blatantly uncritical mouthpiece for Labour Party Propaganda.

Before he came along - it used to be honest about its coverage of ALL political parties. Maybe that's why the Guardian is in a downward spiral as far as its readership is concerned.

Tory Outcast said...

From Flux: "How on earth do you get voters out to mark an enthusiastic X for another five years of Labour, when the new Leader is a product of panic rather than what’s best for Britain?"

At least this is fresh thinking. Can't remember the last time a Labourite gave any consideration to "what’s best for Britain?"

Maybe they should make this Flux guy leader? He's already attempting to get rid of possible opponents: "how about Jon Cruddas for Polly’s job?"

Stepney said...

Ferrets. Sack.


Mark M said...

"Meanwhile in the real world". Is that a leftie catchphrase?

I hear it so often, normally when disagreeing with whatever the author over at Liberal Conspiracy has to say. "Oh look, a right wing troll", they say. "Meanwhile, in the real world...."

The thing I find funny is that there are so many lefties who just can't stand the thought they might get booted out in a few months.

jon dee said...

Wonder who/what Toby Flux is, apart from agitated, that is ?

Man in a Shed said...

This is a great game.

We attack Brown - but no in a way and with timing that allow Labour to replace him, untill its too late ( even the BBC's The Thick of it gets this -but not Big Ears and his fellow conspirators ).

Hague allows Harman to look good - now she's leading up their election campaign. (Result!)

And even sweat Polly is now the voice of reason that the Raving Rabbids of Labour politics want to attack.

You've got to hand it to team Cameron - Labour are precisely, and expertly, positioned where they want them.

Grumpy Old Man said...

John Rentoul has also commenced hostilities with La Toynbee in today's Indy; proof positive that even the socialist media believe the GE is decided. What we have seen in the New Year is the heralds Toynbee Rentoul and Flux calling the several groups in the Labour Party to battle, in which the GE will be, at best, a sideshow for 26% of the population, who have different priorities. We will have a Grandstand view and will just have to stay clear of collateral damage from the Decline And Fall of the Labour Party. I can't say I won't enjoy it.

denverthen said...

Slightly OT, but I enjoyed your comments on R4 this evening. Spot on.

Happy New Year and keep it up, Iain. Not far to go now before the worst government and Prime Minister this country has ever had inflicted upon it is gone, gone, gone! A hopeful prospect in the midst of the nation's gloom.

Ean Craigie said...

its just so much fun when they turn on each other. More I say more.

Silent Hunter said...

I see that the friendly mod's at the Guardian have called time on Polly's thread.

Perhaps it looks to bad for Labour to have all that negativity filling up the comments section LOL.

debris said...

"Polly Put the Kettle On"

Polly put the straight jacket on more like.

Infoholic UK said...

It can be funny to watch the defeated party tear itself apart after an election.

When it's the Government BEFORE an election, it's a tragedy for us all.

John said...

I can't take Polly seriously after Richard Littlejohn showed her up on question time when he brought up the fact that she flies to her Tuscan villa almost monthly while, at the same time, trying to tell us proles how to live our lives.

Unsworth said...

She put the kettle on?

I think it suits her.

Always thought she was a bit of an old boiler, letting off steam in any direction and entirely inconsistent. Any bets on her changing position yet again between now and the outcome of the General Election?

Tachybaptus said...

Jon Dee:

I was also puzzled by the name Toby Flux, and wondered whether it was an anagram of Foxy Blut, clearly a pro-hunting campaigner. However, Google reveals:

Toby Flux was a councillor from 1990-1998 [sic], and for a time Leader of the Labour [sic] on Kingston upon Thames LBC. He is currently the Editor of Labour Matters....

And also:

Toby Flux is a professional Web designer and developer. In 2003, one of his creations came third in the Future Publishing UK Internet awards for best UK ...

But when you try to follow up this link, you get:
This domain name expired on Nov 22 2009 04:54AM.

Which doesn't sound terribly professional. Also wondered whether Labour Matters; but I suppose it does, in an entirely negative way.

Anonymous said...

The trouble is that Nulabor +has+ given a lot of people good reason to vote for them.

One the one hand you have a burgeoning nomenklatura, many of whom would otherwise be shelf filling, and on the other a huge welfare vote.

When the lection comes, these people will form a sizeable block of support. You can see how Nulabor plans to gain their votes with all this talk about 'tory cuts'.

Ok, it may still not win them the election, but it could easily stop them losing too badly, and perhaps make a working majority for Cameron an impossibility.

I Squiggle said...

I utterly despise Ms Toynbee, and have done for over 30 years. From personal experience she is a shifty mendacious hypocritical vainglorious.. etc. (and then add your own noun). “Do as I say, and on no account aspire to what I do”

Osama the Nazarene said...

Iain, methinks you do exaggerate hugely or perhaps you just view this Labour bickering through "Tory tinted glasses".

I rarely bother to look at the actual Labour links you comment on but this time I went to read Mr Flux's so called rant. In my view (and in Labour terms) I would consider his article as quite well argued. As lots of other people have pointed out above Toynbee was complicit in Brown's "coronation", she is a hypocrite of the highest order and is totally inconsistent in her views.

Flux is wrong in a lot of his assumptions as the so called "good" things Labour did were based on a confetti economy of other people's money but he is correct in chastising Toynbee.

I really wouldn't concern yourself with internal Labour leadership machinations, just hammer them on their overall incompetence and inability to govern. Who cares what leader they put up, its their problem.

You can also bet that various Labour individuals will have their own prospects very much in mind when considering the leadership question and not that of the British people.

canvas said...

This bit made me laugh > "The problem isn’t Gordon Brown, but middle class journalists like you being fair-weather friends." :)))

WAH! WAH! Flux is throwing his toys out of the pram! I'm sure I heard Ben Bradshaw (self-serving 'Thick of It' type politician that he is )spouting off a similar party line today on the news.

Anyway, Flux is in denial. He is deluded. Gordon Brown is SO the problem. Fact. The decline started with Tony Blair and the illegal Iraq war and Gordon Brown sealed the deal. Labour are going down - it's perfectly clear for all to see. It's also clear that if Labour changed their leader (Alan Johnson or any Miliband brother) then MAYBE we could have a real choice in the next election.

However, that's not going to happen. We have no choice. It's David Cameron as PM. I like DC but I don't like most of his politics - or his colleagues. It doesn't matter - I have no choice. I won't vote Tory but I'll be relieved to see DC in charge - instead of Gordon Brown.

Shame on Labour for losing the plot in such a spectacular way.

Cynic said...

Gordon is as charismatic as Michael Foot's Donkey Jacket.

Anonymous said...

Its part of Zanu's Lielabor Sewer rats plan, to engineer as much as possible a split in the way real people vote.

I understand it will take about 40k+ votes to elect a Tory but less than 30k votes for ZanuLie Labor.This shower of kake are polling around 24% at present, so it won't take much IF the Real Voters are split between UKIP & BNP.
Zanu LieLabor & the madman will then sneak through again and what a fcuking nightmare that will be for everyone.

What is needed is some "real fire in DC's belly" to ensure he wins this critical election so the nightmare does not happen for all of our futures.....

raincoaster said...

Iain, you're a tease.

On Facebook you're all, "oh, raincoaster, I miss your comments" but when I comment, do I see it show up? Not in this thread I don't.

grumble grumble gonna comment on lefty blogs now, I am, you just watch me