My tests of leadership are –
1. to make people “see the stars”; i.e. vision that compels;
2. relishing the opportunity to use the mass media to convert people to our cause;
3. demonstrating the ability to convert people through the media;
4. working out what the country needs, and putting meeting the need into a form that people can relate to; (unlike our list of 104 pledges);
5. Socialist, Internationalist and Green, cos it’s what we are; and no need to diss previous Labour governments, cos they all did loads;
6. Condemning of the use of barbarity in political dialogue and
7, an expectation of full compliance with action needed to rectify the loss of trust from Jewish people.
From the 1995 Oliver Stone film, Nixon: (Nixon wakes up in the middle of the night.) Manolo (Nixon's Cuban butler, joins him and ) moves to a cabinet on the far side of the pantry. Takes out a bottle of Chivas, puts ice into a tumbler. NIXON Do you miss Cuba, Manolo? MANOLO Yes, Mr. President. NIXON We let you down, didn't we. Your people. MANOLO That was Mr. Kennedy. NIXON You don't think he was a hero? Manolo pours Nixon a drink. MANOLO (shrugs) He was a politician. NIXON (swallows the drink) Did you cry when he died? MANOLO Yes. NIXON Why? MANOLO I don't know. (then) He made me see the stars ... NIXON (looks outside, to himself) How did he do that?
The Leadership event didn’t really ask the questions that I think are pertinent.
The 40 seconds per answer format may be all you can do for a fair opportunity for everyone.
But it never felt like someone could find the space to impress. Save the final 2 minute statements, which Keir Starmer did the best at helping people “see the stars” (pt. 1).
Jess Phillips was combative on tackling anti-Semitism (pt. 7), but for Rebecca Long-Bailey to celebrate Ralph Miliband, but not Ed Miliband (former leader) or David Miliband (former Foreign Secretary) spoke volumes.
As for a Boris Johnson style oft repeated mantra, only Long-Bailey tried it and she went for “democratising the economy”. Nottingham was the home of the Institute for Workers Control, but it’s not a demand I heard anyone try to sell during the last election, not called for from the doorstep. The nature of work has changed, is less factory orientated, and the intellectual property more internationalised. Perhaps it can work in a legal office, but very challenging for the huge numbers of people employed caring for others in their homes. Difficult to see how the demand for this has been created (pt 4).