The waves are lapping ever higher around Gordon Brown – yet many figures on the left have reacted by becoming ever more strident in demanding we cling to New Labour’s wreckage.
This week Jon Cruddas MP wrote that voters in Brighton Pavilion should back the Labour candidate rather than the Green Party’s Caroline Lucas in order to “see off the Tories”.
Yet Lucas can win the seat and has an excellent record in opposing war, racism and neoliberalism. Cruddas also voted for 42 days’ detention without charge – presumably because he felt that to do otherwise would imperil Brown’s premiership.
A more unlikely recruit to the “Rally Round Labour” camp is George Galloway MP who used his column in the Daily Record to declare that “Glasgow East should send [Labour’s] Margaret Curran to Westminster on 24 July”.
The urgent priority for the left is to build resistance to Brown’s pay cuts and to create an alternative to his free market agenda that threatens the homes and livelihoods of millions. Doing that requires breaking from the “rally round Labour at all costs” approach.