Some pundits struggle to connect with the world outside the media bubble. Others struggle to connect with the world within it. In the latter category, groping fruitlessly for some strand of originality which he can grasp in order to salvage what remains of his reputation is the Mail on Sunday’s not even slightly celebrated blues artiste Whinging Dan Hodges, who is ranting hopefully about the Labour Party while all around have moved on.
He's desperate, Dan
Desperate Dan has had all week to devise an original sermon to put before his adoring flock, whomsoever they be. Sadly, all he can manage is to whinge about “the Corbynites’ crushing takeover of the party’s ruling National Executive Committee, and the wave of deselections that would reportedly follow”. Yes Dan, “reportedly” being the operative word, because there haven’t been any, except in floor-crossing pundits’ fevered imaginations.
Still, he is in no doubt that we must be frightened of “Jeremy Corbyn and his army of fanatical followers … the Corbynite White Walkers … last week’s surrender”. Er, WHAT? There was a surrender last week? Yes? Yes yes? Yes yes yes? Who dunnit? Actually, there wasn’t a surrender last week. Three Left Slate candidates were elected - it’s that pesky democracy thing once more - to Labour’s NEC.
What, then, is Hodges driving at? Ah, but he is convinced that these alleged “moderates” are enabling Very Bad Things in the Labour Party. And he has an example to give to us: “Before the Election, the moderates were able to mask their complicity. As their party became a safe-space for anti-Semitism”. Yes, he’s on his anti-Semitism hobby horse once more. And once more, Desperate Dan is plain flat wrong.
This is, after all, the pundit so desperate that he sniped at one Jewish Labour member “if you want to be Jeremy Corbyn’s useful Jewish idiot, you go right along”. The pundit who asserted “Sorry to be repetitive, but it’s a binary issue. You can oppose anti-Semitism. Or you can be a member of the Labour Party. But you can’t be both”. Jewish Labour members have not been backward in coming forward to denounce the smears.
Adam West’s response was typical: “As a Jewish socialist and Labour member, it’s impossible to find the words to describe how offensive this tweet is. But I’d recommend Dan has a think about it himself”. Heather Mendick pointed out that Hodges was on very shaky ground himself: “This is offensive to the many Jewish members of Labour who include my mum, my brother, my aunt, my cousin, many friends and comrades and me. It positions us as self-hating Jews which is itself an antisemitic trope”. Quite.
And one Tweeter had to point out to The Great Man “The evidence does not support his claims. According to the latest YouGov survey, you are more likely to be anti-semitic if you are a Conservative/right wing than Labour/left wing”. That link was from the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism’s Anti-Semitism Barometer 2017.
So perhaps Dan Hodges will embrace reality and seek out the anti-Semitism where it has always been - out there on the right. Nah, I’m kidding. He’s the Pundit Establishment’s equivalent of a stuck record, and will just keep on whinging to no purpose.
But he’s being paid a shed load dosh to write this drivel, so that’s all right, then.