Once again, the nominally Labour-supporting Mirror titles are having a dig at the current party leadership, perhaps because they would rather have a different Labour leader. But they are not in the position to tell the party who should lead it, Jeremy Corbyn has now won two leadership elections, and they are out of this particular loop. So there is only one thing left - get their pundits to whine about Jezza instead.
And today’s low moaning sound emanating from the pages of the Sunday Mirror comes to us courtesy of the paper’s resident Glenda, Carole Malone, who tells readers “Jeremy Corbyn should jump for joy at news Nissan will keep jobs in Sunderland”, going on to say “When I heard that Nissan was staying in the North East I did a little jig in our living room. Because it doesn’t just mean 7,000 people will keep their jobs. It means the families of those 7,000 men and women can celebrate Christmas knowing their lives are not over”.
But then she turns on Jezza: “it makes my blood boil to see Jeremy Corbyn and his sidekick John McDonnell ignoring all that and bellyaching instead about what kind of deal the Government has given Nissan to stay … Instead of being interested in the thousands of saved jobs, Labour’s leader seems fixated on scoring political points and demanding details of any deal he THINKS might have been done - even though Nissan is flatly denying there is one”. Nissan is flatly denying nothing. But do go on.
“If those 7,000 people had been thrown on the dole, along with thousands of supply workers, then it’s public money that would have been used to support them and their families on benefits for decades … Would Corbyn have preferred that?” There is more.
“And if, as he says, other car makers here will want the same ‘assurances’ Nissan has had (the rumours are the Government has agreed to pay any increased tariffs levied on Nissan as a result of Brexit ) then why the hell not? Surely it’s better for us to invest in keeping car companies here than letting them go elsewhere and condemning thousands of people to life on handouts?” We appear to have a research fail here (again).
Consider this line from the Guardian’s report on Corbyn’s response: “Corbyn said he was pleased there would be continued investment in Sunderland”. One wonders what part of that Carole Malone does not understand. One also has to wonder why she is unable to see that the “reassurances” may either go against EU and WTO rules on subsidies, or hem the Government in when it gets down to post-Article 50 negotiations.
Carole Malone may find such detail inconvenient, but it is as much an influence on the future of the workers she claims to champion as the Nissan deal itself. Unquestioningly saying “Yeah, why shouldn’t they have some kind of special treatment and just shut up asking silly questions” might sound good when there is no-one else in the room, but this kind of thing matters. The competence of the Government matters.
That is why we have a Parliamentary opposition - to ask those questions. If those questions were not asked, and the whole deal fouled up somewhere down the line, Carole Malone would be screaming blue murder about it. The least she could do now is to engage brain before opening mouth. Not that we expect such things from her.