‘Why the hell doesn’t Corbyn put the bell around the cat’s neck?’
No. It’s the Aesop’s fable that springs to mind when I read the various Princess and Princeling (elected or not) posturings and complaints about Corbyn and Copeland:
The mice call a conference to try to decide on how to stop the cat catching and eating them. One ‘princeling’, or it might have been a ‘princess’, got up and announced that the solution was to put a bell on the cat. At first, the other mice were all pleased and excited to have a solution. Then someone asked ‘How are we going to put a bell on the cat?’ ‘Oh’ said the prince/essy mouse ‘If you’re not going to listen to my advice, I’m off’. And with that, she/he flounced off.
Like all the rest of the mice, I’m left wondering if I’ve missed something … but no. That really is the sum of it.
In fact, there is another fairy story which fits … The Emperor’s New Clothes.
There are two fraudsters who manage to persuade the Emperor that they have tailored him a magnificent set of clothes which only the intelligent can see.
The Emperor doesn’t want to admit that he can’t see a thing. So he pays the men a huge amount of gold and wears his new ‘clothes’ in a procession down the High Street. The people, suitably primed that they must be stupid if they can’t see the wonderful clothes, ‘ooo’ and ‘argh’ about the magnificent appearance of their King.
All that is except for one little boy who shouts out that the King is as naked as the day he was born.
No-one ever says what happened to the little boy. I guess that he was pilloried by the combined weight of the press and BBC… and by right wing MPs of all political parties. The entire weight of the establishment would have come down on the little boy’s head.
And the people in the crowd? Well, I imagine that like all groups of people, they won’t all have thought the same thing.
Some will have persuaded themselves that they really could see the non-existent robes. Others will be more cautious and want to give the fraudsters the benefit of the doubt. Another group will have seen exactly what is happening but won’t want to be pilloried like the little boy and decide that it’s better just to play along with the fraud because it’s too difficult to go against the establishment.
Then there will be those who see the fraud as good thing… good for them that is.
However, there is a final group. These will be those brave and honourable souls who will gather around the little boy, standing up against the fraudsters regardless of the jeers of the press and public. Those who realise that it is better to see the world as it really is rather than as they fear or want it to be… because it is only by recognizing the lies, the frauds and the sleights of hand that they will be able to fashion a better world which works for ordinary people and not the vested interests of the establishment and global finance.
It speaks volumes that there is more reality to be found in the words of Conservative journalists like Peter Oborne or in the comment threads on ConHome than there is from a majority of the PLP.
I will finish with an except from a Danny Finkelstein article about Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters: