‘My secret plan to turn students against Brexit’, Politico, 26 October 2017.

My name is Tim Bale and I’m an academic. I’ve been abusing Brexit for nearly a year and a half now, and I just can’t seem to stop. Not a day goes by without me thinking about it, even if I’m not actually doing it. It’s affecting my work life, my home life, and pretty much all my relationships.

The only thing it’s not affecting, it turns out, is my students. Try as I might to bend the minds of my supposedly vulnerable young charges to my Europhile will, the little blighters simply will insist on thinking for themselves. Honestly, sometimes I don’t know why I bother; I really don’t.

Just last week, I took a straw poll of my two second-year British Politics groups at Queen Mary University of London, the majority of whom belong to the 18-24 age group that was most likely to have voted Remain back in June 2016. I offered them a choice: Stay in the EU on current terms or crash out in 2019 with no deal.

Heaven or hell, right? So why, then, did a shocking 30-odd percent of them choose the latter — an option which, in my clearly considered view, any fool (and even, I’ve heard tell, some Cabinet ministers) knows would be a complete and utter catastrophe?

There are surely only two explanations. Either I am a total failure as a propagandist and a pedagogue (possible, but can I really be that bad?) Or else a pesky professional preoccupation with balance and objectivity continues to thwart my best and most malign intentions.

There’s also, I suppose, the fact that I am teaching highly intelligent, politically engaged adults (did I mention, by the way, that they were adults?), all of them possessing fully functioning bullshit-detectors and all of them continually reading, watching, listening to and talking about all sorts of stuff that stands in shocking contradistinction to my own toxic (yet I like to think still tempting) brew of paternalistic centrism, naïve internationalism and desperately unpatriotic defeatism.

Of course, maybe I’m trying to throw even the most perspicacious pro-Brexit columnists off the scent by focusing on the time I spend prancing around the lecture theater and sitting in the seminar room banging on about British politics. Maybe I’m at my most nefarious and insidious in my textbook, European Politics: a Comparative Introduction.

Or maybe not. True, the fourth edition was published this year, over six months after the U.K. voted to leave the EU. But the wheels of academia grind awful slow — so slow that I barely had time to insert more than a few lines (five index entries, I just checked) about Brexit and its impact at complex copy-edit and proof stages.

Agreed, the journal articles that probably make up the bulk of the reading we set for students are much briefer and can theoretically respond more rapidly to contemporary events. But these go through an even more painstaking peer-review process, which means that anything substantive (as opposed to speculative) on Brexit — apart perhaps from work that explores the intricacies of the referendum result — may well only appear in these texts after — rather than before — we leave the European Union.

These frustrating but inevitable leads and lags apply just as much to stuff published by scholars who spend their whole life studying not U.K. or comparative European politics but the EU itself. It seems that, far from being in the vanguard of our wicked collective endeavor to brainwash Britain’s students against Brexit, academic colleagues who specialize in the EU are unlikely to be of much help in that respect.

For one thing, like the EU member countries and Brussels bureaucrats they write about, Brexit (how can I put this so as not to offend Euroskeptics?) may not be the most important thing on their agenda right now.

For another, they tend — at least in my experience — to be pretty critical of the EU: after all, they of all people know how it operates. If students come out of these courses more committed to the ideal of European integration than when they went in — and frankly I’ve no idea if this is the case or not (has anyone ever tried to find out? Maybe they should) — then it’s because they’ve decided that, on balance, the upsides they’ve learned about outweigh the (often considerable) downsides.

Any idea, incidentally, that the U.K. will need fewer staff and students specifically interested in the EU is — if you’ll forgive me slipping into abstruse academic jargon for a moment — utterly bonkers. In fact, we’ll probably need even more of them.

Whatever you think of the whole enterprise, the EU is a trading and political powerhouse that, once we’re denied the more or less easy familiarity that comes with membership, we are going to have to work even harder to understand.

Ultimately, and rather ironically, though, I’m seeking to counter a dubious charge that it’s through our teaching and research that we, as academics, are hardening our students’ hearts and minds against Brexit.

If it’s substantiation for that charge that Conservative MP Chris Heaton-Harris was hoping to get when he sent out a letter asking universities to share a list of professors teaching Brexit-related material, then I say: Good, at least we’ll have some evidence.

Because at the moment, the best Brexiteers can come up with is a list of clearly earnest, though hardly subtle, and arguably self-interested interventions by scholars who have either gone over to the dark side (university management — run for the hills!) or else are indulging in perfectly legit extracurricular political activity.

None of these, I’m sad to inform the world, are likely even to be noticed by the average (or even above- or below-average) student, let alone persuade them to set fire to the Union Flag while draping themselves instead in the glorious blue and gold stars of Brussels.

Originally published at https://www.politico.eu/article/secret-brexit-plan-to-turn-students-against-leaving-eu/

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‘Ten lessons for Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil from Tory election disaster’, Irish Times, 20 October 2017.

The dust might not have settled but the data is in. Thanks to research conducted by various pollsters, we have a pretty good idea of what happened and why in last June’s UK general election. And there are some relevant and thought-provoking take-homes for both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil.

First the good news. The combined share for the Conservatives and Labour was just over 80 per cent. So, as polls suggest might be the case in Ireland, too, perhaps the conventional wisdom that the two biggest parties are somehow bound to bleed votes to smaller, more radical alternatives no longer holds.

A note of caution for both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil. If voters don’t see the need for an election, they do not take kindly to whichever party is seen to have opportunistically triggered it for its own advantage – whether it’s an opposition suddenly pulling the plug on government or, as was the case with the Conservatives, a government transparently trying to capitalise on an opinion poll lead over the opposition.

3 Widespread scepticism about whether campaigns make much of a difference may need to be revised. Labour started way behind the Tories yet came close to finishing level on vote – if not on seat share. Surveys show voters are less and less tribal and more and more consumerist. Surveys also show that more and more of them are making up their minds later and later, so losing momentum can be very costly.

4 A word of warning to Fine Gael. Don’t, as the Tories did, try to make the campaign all about who’s in charge. You might, like they did, find that your leader doesn’t do as well against that opponent as you’re expecting, especially if he’s an experienced electioneer. And research on this year’s UK general election confirms what we already know, namely that voters aren’t stupid and they’re suspicious: are you focusing on your leader because that’s all you’ve got to offer or, worse, because you’ve got something to hide?

5 Voters may be be tiring of negative campaigning. They’re feeling pretty negative themselves, with a majority in the UK, for instance, worried that kids today aren’t going to enjoy a life as good as their parents’. Obviously, they don’t all want pie-in-the-sky promises from the opposition, and Labour’s platform was regarded by too many people as too good to be true. But at least it was positive and hopeful, in marked contrast to the “misery manifesto” and personalised attacks put out by the Conservatives.

6 Despite its best efforts, the government doesn’t get to decide what the election is going to be about. The Tories assumed they could make it all about competence and Brexit. But the voters wanted it to be about the bread and butter issues that mattered most to them and their families rather than some abstract idea of what was best for the country. That suited Labour, as it was seen to be keen to talk about precisely those issues and to have the best policies on them. If the Irish are anything like the British, then, Fianna Fáil is right to shout as loudly as it can about the need to move beyond austerity, the shortage of affordable housing, and (most importantly, surveys show) the crisis in healthcare.

7 What you’re willing to talk about speaks volumes about your brand, and brands still count. One reason the UK general election didn’t turn into a total disaster for Theresa May was partly because the Conservatives were slightly ahead of Labour on “Competent and capable” and way ahead on “Willing to take tough decisions for the long term”. But that was it. Labour had huge leads on “Wants to help ordinary people get on in life” and “Fairness” and “Opportunity for all”. Judging from their ardfheis slogans and soundbites, Fianna Fáil seem to have taken note.

8 That ardfheis was also a reminder of a lesson that emerges from research on this year’s general election in the UK, namely that enthusiastic foot soldiers matter. Work for the Party Members’ Project I run makes it clear that not only did Labour’s grassroots outnumber their Conservative counterparts by a factor of five to one, most of them did more campaigning, too.

9 Crucially, Labour’s members also did a lot more for their party on social media. Facebook (and to a lesser extent Twitter) really are crucial campaign spaces nowadays. Clearly, both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil need to make sure they aren’t (like the Tories were) behind the curve here. But they also need to appreciate that the most effective memes and clips – and research suggests that positive and genuinely witty stuff works far better than negative, fact-based material – weren’t produced by Labour HQ but organically by the party’s younger supporters on the ground.

10 The final lesson follows from this, but it’s a tricky one. We know from all the research that age was a major factor in June, largely because younger voters have a more liberal, more progressive outlook on a whole range of issues. We also know that the referendum that took place the year before helped (re)structure people’s political preferences.

Fine Gael and, perhaps particularly, Fianna Fáil, which needs to do better in bigger places, need to take note. Although by no means all young Irish people want to see the end of the Eighth Amendment, and although there is a huge issue of conscience at stake, neither party wants to get trapped on the wrong side of what in Ireland, too, may be becoming an increasingly crucial demographic divide. There will always be a place for a party that represents small-town, small-c conservative Ireland. But that place may not be the future.

Originally published at https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/ten-lessons-for-fine-gael-fianna-f%C3%A1il-from-tory-election-disaster-1.3262168

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‘Tim Bale: Inside Labour’s massive membership base’, LabourList, 6 October 2017,

People who join political parties are abnormal.  Even if we take into account the phenomenal growth of Labour’s grassroots support since 2015, fewer than five per cent of British adults are party members.

That doesn’t mean, of course, that people who join political parties are weird. Despite a stereotype that sees them as either ideological zealots or crazed careerists, most of them are simply folk who are interested in politics and enjoy mixing with people who, like them, believe in their chosen party’s values and would much rather see them govern than the other lot.

True, there are big differences in how the members of different parties view the same issue – whether we’re talking about austerity, immigration, law and order, or Brexit.  But we need to be careful that those political differences don’t blind us to the fact that, demographically-speaking, the members of different parties may have more in common than they might care to admit.

The ESRC-funded Party Members Project that I work on with Paul Webb, from Sussex University, and Monica Poletti who, like me, is based at Queen Mary University of London, has enabled us, with the help of YouGov, to survey samples of party members immediately after both the 2015 and 2017 general elections. As a result we hope we have a pretty good idea of what Labour members, in the aggregate, look like and how they compare to members of other parties.

Our research suggests that, like it or not, Labour’s membership is not much less middle-class and less white than the memberships of its two main rivals.  Three-quarters of Labour members fall into the ABC1 category, and while this is by no means an ideal measure of class – objective or subjective – it doesn’t throw up a huge difference with the Tories and the Lib Dems, nearly nine out of ten of whose members fall into the same category. As for ethnicity, white British members make up over 95 per cent of the total in each and every one of the three parties.

That said, Labour does stand out from its counterparts when it comes to gender. Partly because of those who have joined it since 2015, the party has far more female members as a proportion of its total membership than do the Conservatives and the Lib Dems. Indeed, Labour is getting close, probably for the first time in its history, to gender parity among its members.

When it comes to where Labour members live, there is an interesting – but, given the importance, of London, by no means total – mismatch between the party’s electoral heartlands, which are in the north, and where nearly half of its grassroots supporters are located, in London and the south.

And finally, age – the thing that seems to excite so much interest, not least because it was such a big deal when it came to voting in this year’s general election. In June, the Conservatives did badly among “young” voters, those aged between 18 and 44, and where Labour performed poorly among more “middle-aged” and “older” voters.

Labour’s membership, however, doesn’t exactly mirror that split. Although the post-2015 narrative has been all about a flood of younger people into the party, the reality appears to be a little different. Sure, some young people have joined, but so too have many middle-aged people, many of them folk who left the party in the Blair era but who have now re-joined under Jeremy Corbyn.

But while the Labour membership’s age profile (28 per cent 18-44, 42 per cent 45-64 and 30 per cent 65+) might not meet the expectations of those members who would prefer it to project purely youthful idealism and energy and look “better” than that of the Lib Dems, it is at least healthier (no pun intended) than that of the Conservatives, getting on for half of whose members are at or nearing retirement age.

Now, there are bound to be caveats and criticisms of all this, arguing, for example, that way more Labour members live in London or are younger than our research suggests. And they might have a point. Even though YouGov’s work on Labour leadership elections suggests it has a pretty good handle on the party’s membership, the surveys it conducted for us will never be perfect and, given how much churn there is in parties’ memberships, it can only ever be a snapshot of a moving target.

Moreover, we would love to be able to compare and weight our data to the data on members held by the parties themselves, presuming of course that they hold it accurately and comprehensively, which in the Conservatives’ case is open to serious doubt. But, thus far, they have all proved rather reluctant to make it publicly available.

Any readers who feel we’ve got it wrong are most welcome to visit our website and email us – and, if they’re members, who knows, they might feel like putting forward resolutions at conference encouraging their parties to publish the figures themselves!

Originally published at https://labourlist.org/2017/10/tim-bale-inside-labours-massive-membership-base/

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‘OMG Britain’s Tories are SO OLD. Conservatives are right to be worried about their lack of popularity with young Brits’, Politico, 5 October 2017.

The Tories have an age problem. In June’s general election, some two-thirds of British voters aged 18-25 voted Labour. Only one in five voted Conservative. That’s got the party worried — and rightly so.

Once upon a time, statistics like these were easier to dismiss. Young people might lean left rather than right, but since so many of them couldn’t be bothered to actually turn up at polling stations on the day, did it really matter? And weren’t they bound to see sense as they got older anyway?

Well, no actually. There is some evidence that people become slightly more conservative as they get older, but this “life-cycle” effect is potentially offset by a “cohort effect” — the idea that, since generations carry their early political preferences with them as they age, any party that loses young voters will pay a high price as time passes.

Seen from this perspective, last summer’s election is even more worrying for the Tories than it appeared at first glance.

True, they beat Labour hands down (59 percent to 23 percent) when it came to the over 65s, and comfortably (47 percent to 33 percent) when it came to those aged 55 to 64.

But among those aged between 45 to 54, Labour drew level (taking 39 percent to the Conservatives’ 40 percent). And what’s most alarming: Among 35- to 44-year-olds, Labour won by 50 percent to 30 percent, and among 25- to 34-year-olds, it led by 58 percent to 22 percent.

Admittedly, younger people — and not only in the U.K. — still vote in significantly smaller numbers than older generations. But in the 2017 election, the gap between young and old narrowed noticeably.

Wandering around and talking to people at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester, it’s obvious that a fair number of Tories know they have a problem and are beginning to wonder what they can do.

And yet, just when you think the Conservatives might figure something out, along comes a minister — in this case, self-sabotaging failed leadership contender Andrea Leadsom — to provide yet another face-palm moment.

Speaking about the brave new world that Brexit apparently constitutes for Britain’s young people (most of whom voted against it), she reassured them that “For some of you it may feel scary. But for me, on your behalf, it’s really exciting.”

If that weren’t patronizing enough, she went on to remind them of “the incredible advances in medical science, where your generation will have things fixed by robots — isn’t that extraordinary? Not only that, but probably your raspberries will be picked by robots.”

Perhaps some young adults — yes, they are adults, not toddlers — can’t wait to munch on machine-harvested fruit while recovering from android-assisted surgery. But knowing a few of them as I do in my day job as a university lecturer, I doubt that such a vision will prove sufficient to assuage their anxieties about securing a decent job.

Nor will it do much for their paramount concern: getting on the country’s increasingly unaffordable — some would say broken — housing ladder.

They’re also understandably concerned that NHS waiting lists are getting longer and longer, and primary and secondary schools are losing resources.

The Tories will have to come up with something convincing to offer people in their 20s, 30s and 40s on bread-and-butter issues if they are to have any hope of clawing back some of the support they have lost to Labour in recent years.

And doing something about university tuition fees, as the government announced it would this week, won’t cut it. Drill down into post-election survey analysis, and you will see that young people have fled the Tories because they are anxious about their future — not just because they are current or former students.

Changing how the Conservatives look and sound — and, quite frankly, are — as a party might help too. Research by the ESRC-funded Party Members Project run by Queen Mary University of London and Sussex University, suggests that nearly seven in 10 grassroots Tories are men and nine in 10 are middle-class, as opposed to working-class. It also suggests that close to half of the party’s grassroots members are older than 65, while only a quarter are aged between 18 and 45.

Attracting younger members, as well as more working-class and female members, might help address another of the party’s challenges: their members’ ability to assist the party on social media compared to their Labour counterparts.

But, crucial as it is, upping the party’s game on Facebook and Twitter won’t be enough to win back young voters on its own. Neither will scrambling to set up some half-arsed equivalent to Labour’s Momentum. Nor, by the way, will replacing Theresa May with Boris Johnson or Jacob Rees-Mogg do the trick.

True, as Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn has shown, the right leader can help enthuse and mobilize young people. But in the end, a party needs to persuade them that it’s on their side. For the Tories, that prospect still seems an awfully long way off.

Originally published at https://www.politico.eu/article/omg-britains-tories-conservatives-party-are-so-old-demographics/

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‘How the Tory party can solve its membership crisis, in three easy steps’, Guardian, 3 October 2017.

The Conservative party no longer seems capable of winning elections by a convincing margin. Nor does it attract as many members as its main rivals. Arguably, the two things are related. A successful campaign requires cash, as well as an attractive offer to voters. But it also needs members capable of selling that offer on the ground.

The fact that the party hasn’t released membership figures since 2013 (when it was apparently around 150,000) doesn’t suggest they’re very healthy. But it’s not just numbers that matter. It’s also about who those members are and what they’re prepared to do for their party. And the findings for the Conservatives aren’t great, according to research by the Party Members Project (which I help to run, and is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council).

For a start, Tory members don’t look much like voters in general. Over two-thirds are men and nearly nine out of 10 are middle class. Meanwhile, getting on for half the party’s membership is over 65, with only about one in 20 in the 18-24 age group. That helps to account for the fact that, as well as being significantly more Thatcherite on the economy than the average voter, they are socially very conservative.

The same skewed demography also contributes to the fact that Tory members seem to have done less campaigning than their counterparts in other parties at the 2017 general election. They were much less active on Facebook and Twitter, and only half as likely to display a poster. When it came to canvassing, honours were more even, and on leafleting they actually did slightly better than Labour members (though way behind the Lib Dems in that department).

But perhaps the most alarming fact is that more than four in 10 Conservative members admitted to having spent no time whatsoever helping Theresa May deliver the party’s message to voters during the election. Perhaps this dovetails with the finding that when talk turns to politics in social or work situations, Tory members seem more reluctant than members of other parties to open up to friends and colleagues about their political affiliation.

So much for the problems. What about the solutions? How does the Conservative party bag itself more boots on the ground? Our research, because it took in both members and people who strongly support the party but don’t belong to it, offers a few clues.

First, the party needs to work hard to dispel a number of pervasive myths about membership. Far too many potential members wrongly believe people join parties for essentially self-interested reasons, or simply because they belong to a certain family or social milieu – and that they end up spending huge amounts of time on mind-numbingly boring tasks.

Second, the party needs to do more to persuade people that its members are respected by the leadership and can actually play a part in determining its direction. Currently, a third of Tory members (compared with well under 10% of Labour, Lib Dem and SNP members) don’t believe – and they’re right not to – that they are respected, and more than half of them would like to see the membership have more influence on policy.

Last, the party needs to avoid giving the impression that, in an ideal world, it would really rather not involve its members even in choosing its leader – something that’s happened in two out of the past three Tory leadership contests. Around one in six of those who strongly support the party but don’t actually belong to it said it might be worth joining to have a say in who got the top job next time round. Sure, balloting the grassroots introduces more uncertainty into the process. It also involves revealing to the world just how many (or how few) members the party really has. But if it helps bring in fresh faces, then that’s a risk very much worth running.

Originally published at https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/oct/03/tory-party-membership-crisis-members-conservatives

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‘Is capitalism at a crossroads?’, Observer, 1 October 2017.

Seen from space, capitalism seems to be ticking along quite nicely. Globally, at least, the markets and growth they promote have pulled millions out of absolute poverty. Zoom in, though, and the picture is more worrying – and not only in those post-colonial nations whose resources continue to be exploited by unscrupulous businesses and the kleptocratic despots and pseudo-democrats they rely on. Even in developed countries, the belief that things can only get better and that a rising tide lifts all boats is increasingly being exposed for what it is – an assumption based on a kind of capitalism constrained by unions and governments, as well as by technology.

Thanks to technological progress, the decline of organised labour and politicians who think the easing of those constraints would promote faster growth, capitalism is failing to generate social mobility and even basic welfare provision for those who need it most. But the extent to which that is the case varies considerably between countries, and that comes down to political choices. Britain has always sat somewhere between the more managed, corporatist capitalism of, say, Scandinavia, and the devil-take-the-hindmost, liberal version practised in the US.

The alternatives offered by Corbyn and May, then, are neither so stark nor so unfamiliar as they seem. If capitalism here is at a crossroads, it’s more likely to stumble hesitantly straight on than to turn sharply left or right, whichever party wins the next election.

Originally published at https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/oct/01/is-capitalism-at-a-crossroads

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‘Labour in Brighton: it’s not a cult, it’s too big for that now’, The Conversation, 27 September 2017.

If you’ve ever been to a party conference – maybe any conference actually – you’ll have experienced that disconcerting feeling you get when you walk out of the building it’s being held in and re-enter the real world.

Sometimes the contrast can be alarmingly stark: I particularly recall the discombobulation I felt as I emerged blinking from wherever it was that the last Conservative Party conference was staged in Blackpool to streets that could easily have served as the backdrop for a supposedly gritty drama about “left-behind Britain”. Who knows, maybe that’s why the Tories don’t go there any more?

But Brighton and the new model Labour party: that’s a different story. As long as you avoid the buses, betting shops and arcades of West Street, you can slip out of the Brighton Centre, or any of the various venues in which events are being held, and find yourself in the Laines, where you quickly discover that, in this city, there’s not really that big a difference between the delegates and the denizens.

That’s not just because the Laines are chock-full of folk who’ve decided to eschew the main hall and the official fringe for the delights of Momentum’s World Transformed events, which really are, it should be said, every bit as packed and as popular as the organisation (many of whose key people are Sussex University graduates, incidentally) claims.

It’s also because so many of those who’ve chosen to attend #Lab17 – a lot of them for the first time – look and sound like the kind of people who anybody familiar with the studenty/boho bits of Brighton (as opposed to, say, the city’s Whitehawk estate) will have seen in their coffee bars and retro shops. They’re caring; they’re concerned; they’re outraged; they believe another world is possible – and many of them are already living in it.

Little wonder, perhaps, that a grumpy Blairite friend of mine who’s been coming to conference for decades tells me he hardly recognises it (or indeed anyone) anymore – apart, that is, from a handful of hard-left activists he thought he’d seen off in the 1980s.

Speaking as someone who’s been to a few Green Party conferences, he’s stretching it when he says this is like one of them. Contrary to what you might read in the right-wing tabloids, there are a fair few quote-unquote “normal” folk around. And there are still a few young thrusters roaming around in suits, even if most of them are lobbyists and journos – oh, and trade unionists, who are still very much a moving presence here.

But that Blairite friend is right when he says – as columnists including Owen Jones (very much up for it) and Marie Le Conte (not quite so sure) have noted – that, even if he still belongs to the party, the party no longer belongs to him.

It’s going to stay like that for a while. The left currently controls many of the big unions. Moreover, unlike the early eighties, they can boast about a general election result which convinces many in the party that Labour can win it next time round.

And after this conference, the Corbynistas have control of the leadership, the rulebook, the machine and the membership. Yes, the leadership has fudged Brexit – but its followers, who are overwhelmingly Remainers and want to stay in the single market and the customs union, don’t seem, to me anyway, to be prepared to make that much of a fuss about it. Cognitive dissonance? Not so much.

“Is it a cult?”, some ask – especially if they were sitting in the hall as the party leader approached the platform for his closing speech. That’s when adoring delegates, fresh from clapping along to an LGBT choir’s acapella version of “Something Inside So Strong”, stamped their feet as they belted out the now obligatory “Oh, Jeremy Corbyn”. Ironically, perhaps, we’ve not seen the like of it since Margaret Thatcher (the mention of whose name by Corbyn was, naturally, booed and hissed like a panto villain’s) took the Tory conferences of the mid-1980s by storm.

But I’d say no, not a cult. It’s now too big for that. The main hall in Brighton resembled nothing so much as an American mega-church with a congregation of wildly enthusiastic true believers. Whether some of the more agnostic folk going about their daily business outside it – or the voters in constituencies that look nothing like this city and never will do – can be made to share that enthusiasm remains, of course, to be seen.

Originally published at https://theconversation.com/labour-in-brighton-its-not-a-cult-its-too-big-for-that-now-84802

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