Dead Men Left

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Devouring his own children


No such anti-Labour coalition now exists to [Labour's] right...

...because New Labour is the anti-Labour coalition, well to the right of where "Labour" is thought to be. Completing the circle of blogging self-reference, Jamie at Blood and Treasure writes:

As a point of minor sociological interest, it may be that certain media types are feeling ready, for the first time in their lives, to vote Tory should the right candidate appear. At least the thought of doing so gives them a kind of illicit thrill: shall we get out the pink fluffy handcuffs tonight dear? Or shall we vote for David Cameron at the next election?

This jouissance helps explain New Labour's appeal to a similar group: it is an obscene, fantastical version of "Labour": nasty little Tories acting out a fantasy of hating the Tories, covering their still-deeper hatred of Labour by becoming Labour. Blair's contempt for his own party appears bottomless, and when speaking to a business audience about Labour's most reliable supporters he lapses into visceral language. Criticisms of New Labour as "Old Tories" have always fallen short of the mark; they miss New Labour's necessary obscenity.