Dan Hodges

A worthy goal, perhaps John Key might like to mimic it

Dan Hodges thinks that David Cameron and George Osborne are trying to wipe Labour off the political map.

A worthy goal to say the least, but they are now being helped by the election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour’s leader.

In the final days leading up to Jeremy Corbyn?s election as Labour leader, I received several calls from Tory ministers and backbench MPs. They were a bit like football fans whose team is on the brink of promotion, but still can?t quite believe they will secure the final extra point needed to go up. ?It isn?t really going to happen, is it??, one minister asked me. ?They aren?t actually going to do it??

?Yes,” I replied, ?they really are going to do it.?

And they did. Those who view Jeremy Corbyn as a divisive figure are being a touch unfair. There are few politicians who could have managed to get both Diane Abbott and David Cameron rooting for their election.

All of this analysis has been conducted along conventional political lines. How big a majority can the Tories now hope to secure in 2020? Can they grind Labour down so much that a Tory victory in 2025 is all but inevitable?

To which the answers are ?as big as they like? and ?yes?. But these are not conventional political times.

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Dan Hodges on the Left’s response to the “refugee” crisis

Dan Hodge is a former leftist who has seen the light and he rips into the left-wing for their response to the so called refugee crisis and also the whinging that has emerged after David Cameron unleashed drone strikes on the bad wogs in Syria, some of whom are British citizens.

I?m not sure if Reyaad Khan or Ruhul Amin – the two ISIS fighters killed by an RAF drone strike – were personally responsible for throwing two gay men off a roof in Homs two months ago. Perhaps they were part of the mob that waited below to throw rocks at their broken bodies.

Maybe it was them who doused Jordanian pilot Moaz al-Kasasbeh in petrol, locked him in a cage and burnt him alive. Or they were behind some of the rapes Angelina Jolie talked about in the House of Commons yesterday, rapes of girls as young as seven that she said were being used by ISIS as the ?centrepoint of their terror?.

Anyway, we?ll never know now, because they?re dead. And I?m glad they?re dead. I wish all the Isil butchers were dead. Drones. Smart bombs. The tip of a bayonet. It doesn?t really bother me how. The more of them we can kill, the better.

At least, that was my initial reaction when I heard about their deaths. ?Good?, I said to myself, ?they got what was coming to them.”

That wasn?t the reaction of quite a few other people. Over at the Stop The War Coalition, they took a short break from masterminding Jeremy Corbyn?s election campaign to post up an angry statement declaiming ?UK government rides to war killing its own citizens and on the backs of refugees?. In the Guardian, Gary Younge wrote ?Britain can now add extrajudicial killings to torture, rendition and occupation as tools in defence of ?Enlightenment values?. The human rights group Reprieve took to the air waves to complain ?the fact that David Cameron has bypassed parliament to commit these covert strikes is deeply worrying ? as is his refusal to share what legal advice he was given.?

Each to their own I suppose. Well, kind of.

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Dan Hodges tears Darren Hughes a new one

In one great big long sledge awesome pommy left winger points out a few facts about electoral reform in Britain.

He starts off with a good rant.

We can all spot the signs. The excuses. The false rationalisation. The denial. ?It?s OK. Just one more drink. I can handle it.”

This morning the Electoral Reform Society ? those alcoholics of constitutional renewal ? are back at the bar for one more (and only one more, you understand) late-night chaser. The last election was?the ?most disproportionate in British history?. Yes, they may have said that at the previous election. And the one before that. But this time they really, really mean it.

Then he nails Darren Hughes? outfit with some facts.

The first thing to do is make them face up squarely to their past behaviour. Four years ago we had a referendum on electoral reform. The electoral reformers told us this was the chance to say ?Yes to fairer votes?. In fact, it wasn?t just a chance, but a ?once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to improve the way we do politics in the UK?. So off we went to the polling stations, and we voted on it. Six million people (32 per cent) voted to change the system.?13 million (68 per cent) voted to keep it.

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Labour: The party that stares at goats

Dan Hodges is particularly brutal in assessing why Labour lost in the UK.

Many of?the?lessons apply to NZ Labour.

In the mid-Seventies, the United States Army established a new, highly classified programme, codenamed ?Stargate?. It was led by a Major General Albert Stubblebine III, who held rather unconventional views on modern warfare. Stubblebine believed future wars would be fought in the mind. Telekinesis. Thought control. Psychic spying. The basic laws of physics could be usurped, then pressed into the service of Uncle Sam, he explained to his superiors.

So the unit was set up, and testing began. A member of Stubblebine?s team would sit in one room, a second next door, and they would try thinking to each other. In a separate test, a man would sit opposite a goat and try to stare it to death. Stubblebine himself would try to walk through the wall of his office.

Unsurprisingly, these experiments failed, and the unit was quietly wound up. It subsequently became the subject of a book by Jon Ronson. He called itThe Men Who Stare At Goats.

For the past five years the Labour Party has been staring at goats. When Ed Miliband was elected leader he claimed he could recast political physics. He would construct a ?new politics? and ?rewrite? the conventional political rules. And then at 10pm on Thursday evening, he got up from his desk and walked slap-bang into his office wall.

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This is what is happening to Labour here

All political parties ? particularly parties of opposition ? have to have some basic philosophical core.

That?s because if they don?t, they simply wander around aimlessly trying out every passing political fad, and entertaining every passing political snake-oil salesman, when they should instead be settling on a clear path to power.

Dan Hodges explains:

Before Saturday I?d come to the view that the Left had won the battle for control of Labour. I was wrong. No one has control of Labour. This is one of the fundamental problems facing Miliband?s party. Unlike in 1981 (the Bennites) and 1985 (the Kinnockites) and 1994, (the Blairites) there has been no definitive political settlement.

This morning it?s just been announced that?Tony Blair is preparing to make a ?big contribution? to Labour?s coffers, to offset predicted loss of income from the unions. What the hell is that all about?

Ever since Miliband was elected, we?ve been told his entire political plan revolved around moving Labour beyond the Blair/Brown years. You may agree with that plan, you may disagree with that plan. But it sent a clear signal about Labour?s direction of political travel. As did Miliband?s stated desire at Saturday?s conference to open politics up to ?ordinary people?. How does that fit with the news that Blair is about to become Miliband?s sugar daddy?

Some people will claim this is evidence Labour is a ?broad church?. It doesn?t. It shows Labour isn?t a church at all. It?s just a large room with lots of people shouting wholly contradictory things at one another, while people huddle around saying ?Hell yes, I agree with that! Oh, wait, hang on a minute. What did he just say?? ? Read more »

The truth about unions

? The Telegraph

The best leftie in britain, Dan Hodges, points out that unions hate Tories.

Her challenger is Len McCluskey, the leader of the ?super-union? Unite. His vision of modern trade unionism is crystal clear. He wants to use it as a giant club to hammer David Cameron and Nick Clegg into the ground.

Why any Tory ever pretends the unions are anything but the enemy is beyond me.

Dan Hodges is awesome

UK Labour is experiencing the same implosion that is going on here. Basically the left is eating their own and it is extremely funny to watch.

I have blogged about Dan Hodges before and his byline:

Dan Hodges is a Blairite cuckoo in the Miliband nest. He has worked for the Labour Party, the GMB trade union and managed numerous independent political campaigns. He writes about Labour with tribal loyalty and without reservation.

Today he explains why everyone is laughing at the left:

There have been times in Ed Miliband?s leadership when he?s been ignored. That?s not unusual for a new leader of a party consigned to the wilderness of opposition. There have also been times when people have disagreed with him. Like when he?s claimed we should try to understand the rioters or listen to the St Paul?s protestors, or said just about anything on the economy. But now people are openly laughing at him. And for any politician, that is the most dangerous moment of all.

At least, that?s what I thought until I was rudely awoken by my humorous convulsions. And then, at that moment, the truth dawned. People aren?t laughing at Ed Miliband. They?re laughing at all of us. The entire British Left has ceased to become a political movement. We are now a giant comedy sketch. A strange, surreal montage of Monty Python, Citizen Smith and the Thick of It.

On Wednesday I followed a Twitter debate between best-selling Left-wing author Owen Jones, and Sunny Hundal, editor of Liberal Conspiracy, recently voted the most influential Left-wing website in the country. They were debating the deficit, the cuts and Labour?s approach. Hundal?s advice, and I am not making this up, was that the Left should say nothing about them. Coming up with a credible line was just too hard. So we should not talk about the cuts at all. Labour should shift the debate to jobs, the NHS, fly fishing ? anything. But a bit like Basil Fawlty, under no account must we mention the cuts.

Snigger. There are some harsh lessons there in those three short paragraphs that Labour in New Zealand and indeed other leftwing organisation need to understand. They won’t though and because they won’t we will keep on laughing at them….like the Maritime Union.

If only our columnists could be so honest

Check out the tagline of this columnist, Dan Hodges, ?at the Daily Telegraph:

I wonder what Brian Rudman’s would read like, or Bernard Orsman, hell imagine Vernon Small’s and John Hartevelt’s?

Such refreshing honesty…from a journalist.