Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics

Mr Blair provoked anger when he said in July that those who thought their hearts lay with Mr Corbyn 'need a transplant'

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Tony Blair has made a fresh attempt to steer Labour Party members away from voting for Jeremy Corbyn as their next leader – even though he himself admits that the left-winger’s supporters are not listening to warnings.

In an article for the Observer newspaper, he rails against what he calls Mr Corbyn’s ‘Alice In Wonderland’ politics and reveals his clear frustration that so many members seem to have ignored the advice and experience of three party leaders by choosing to support him.

“There is a politics of parallel reality going on, in which reason is an irritation, evidence a distraction, emotional impact is king and the only thing that counts is feeling good about it all,” wrote Mr Blair. “So when people like me come forward and say elect Jeremy Corbyn as leader and it will be an electoral disaster, his enthusiastic new supporters roll their eyes. Neil Kinnock, Gordon Brown and I have collectively around 150 years of Labour party membership. We’re very different. We disagree on certain things. But on this we’re agreed. Anyone listening? Nope. In fact, the opposite. It actually makes them more likely to support him.”

He added: “It is like a driver coming to a roadblock on a road they’ve never travelled before and three grizzled veterans say: “Don’t go any further, we have been up and down this road many times and we’re warning you there are falling rocks, mudslides, dangerous hairpin bends and then a sheer drop.” And the driver says: “Screw you, stop patronising me. I know what I’m doing.”

 

This is not Mr Blair’s first intervention in the contest. He provoked anger when he said in July that those who thought their hearts lay with Mr Corbyn “need a transplant”. Mr Blair’s former communications chief Alastair Campbell, former home secretary David Blunkett and ex-foreign secretary David Miliband have also taken turns in warning members against choosing Mr Corbyn.

In a speech earlier this month, Gordon Brown warned that Labour risked becoming a “party of protest” if it made the wrong choice in the leadership contest. Although he did not mention any leadership contender by name, it was digested as a plea to reject Mr Corbyn’s run.

The repeated attacks on his campaign, however, have not altered Mr Corbyn’s position as the surprise bookmakers’ front-runner ahead of Yvette Cooper, Andy Burnham and Liz Kendall; nor apparently have they had much impact in braking his surging support among those who say the party needs to return to a left-wing, anti-austerity agenda in the wake of May’s general election defeat. Voting is ongoing with the winner due to be announced on September 12.

Mr Blair added in his article: “Someone else said to me: “If you’re writing something again, don’t blah on about winning elections; it really offends them.” It would actually be quite funny if it weren’t tragic… It’s a revolution but within a hermetically sealed bubble – not the Westminster one they despise, but one just as remote from actual reality.”

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