Kinnock v Benn: Labour’s Final Battle of the 1980s

In 1988, Tony Benn challenged Neil Kinnock for the leadership of the Labour Party. The story of the campaign often overlooked by historians. -------------------- Rumours began in January 1988 that Kinnock would face a challenge from the left of the party. Tony Benn claimed Kinnock was ‘increasingly intolerant’ and ‘authoritarian’ in his manner and ‘gave a … Continue reading Kinnock v Benn: Labour’s Final Battle of the 1980s

Will Corbyn be Prime Minister by Christmas? History Would Suggest Not…

It was in the Summer of 2017 - at the hedonistic setting of Glastonbury - that Jeremy Corbyn predicted he would be Prime Minister by Christmas. He later claimed he would do it within twelve months. Experts now agree that October will be an 'Autumn of Discontent' for the Tories. The door could indeed be opened for … Continue reading Will Corbyn be Prime Minister by Christmas? History Would Suggest Not…

Punch and Judy: In Defence of Prime Minister’s Questions

"And we need to change, and we will change, the way we behave. I'm fed up with the Punch and Judy politics of Westminster, the name calling, backbiting, point scoring, finger pointing." David Cameron's Conservative victory speech, December 2005. It's over a decade since Tony Blair left Downing Street and forewent the weekly ordeal of … Continue reading Punch and Judy: In Defence of Prime Minister’s Questions

Prisoners of the Past: Nostalgia and the Post-War Labour Party

Whether it's the collective imagery of Dunkirk, 1945, Thatcherism or the Iraq War, our political discourse remains wedded to the imagery of the past. The stories we tell ourselves are the glue that hold us together. But as Richard Jobson's new book argues, it is also holding us back.  CONTENTS 1. Introduction - Labour, nostalgia and 'nostalgia-identity' … Continue reading Prisoners of the Past: Nostalgia and the Post-War Labour Party

“Precisely the sort of candidate who ought to be able to stand, and lose harmlessly’ – Is Corbyn the modern day Thatcher?

Margaret Thatcher was the most successful Prime Minister of the 20th century.  In the beginning though her party didn't want her. She only stood because nobody else was brave enough and in 1975 she became leader by accident. Events would take her all the way to Number 10.  Is Jeremy Corbyn on the same path? This … Continue reading “Precisely the sort of candidate who ought to be able to stand, and lose harmlessly’ – Is Corbyn the modern day Thatcher?