And this, for me, is one of the big problems with Jeremy Corbyn as a leader; his failure to take responsibility. Responsibility for the bad stuff, that is; he, or his supporters on his behalf, are plenty willing to take responsibility for the good stuff, so that a recent You Gov poll showing Labour making small gains on the Conservatives can be hailed as a victory for Jeremy Corbyn, despite the fact that the same poll showed his standing as a future prime minister with those polled at a woeful 19℅, 3℅ behind the 22℅ who picked “Don’t know”, making Jeremy Corbyn effectively the electorate’s third choice for Prime Minister out of a field of two. (This, of course, was not included in the post hailing the poll gain as ‘Jeremy’s’ [sic] victory, demonstrating that his supporters are not above a bit of selective spin themselves, new politics or no new politics.)
No, I am talking about responsibility generally, for the things that have happened on his watch. If you listen to his supporters, none of this is Jeremy Corbyn’s fault, all can be laid at the door of others, the naysayers, the media, the plotters, the right wing, and so on, and so forth. Again, if Jeremy Corbyn had any cojones, or any idea about what a leader* does and is, he would take some responsibility for this. For he must have some responsibility.
A moment’s thought reveals that in any human interaction there are two sides to the story, two parties interacting, and that the behaviour of each party affects the other. Just as, in a broken marriage, there is never someone who is totally right and someone who is totally wrong, so in any kind of relationship, including that of a political leader both with his party and with the wider electorate. This article by Owen Jones is interesting as constructive feedback on Jeremy Corbyn’s first ten months as leader, from someone who knows the situation well and is widely accepted as a knowledgeable and responsible political commentator of the Left.
*ie, an effective leader. Someone who actually leads, as opposed to being followed.