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To stay in a political party I don't agree with 100%, or should I leave in protest?

(50 Posts)
notheretoargue Mon 11-Dec-17 12:04:53

I've been feeling less and less welcome in the Labour Party over the last few years. I'm not a Corbynista, although I'm not virulently against him. I just think he's a bit disappointing in lots of ways, quite ineffective, and I really don't understand what he's doing with Brexit. I'm also Jewish, and am concerned about anti-semitism within the party. And I'm quite disturbed by momentum, who seem to expect/ demand unwavering loyalty to Jeremy Corbyn, and don't welcome much debate or conversation.

Anyway. My AIBU is - should I stay in the Labour Party and try to participate, make it better, or try to effect change at a very local level? Or should I leave and put my money and energies elsewhere? Elsewhere is not likely to be in politics, as I don't support any of the other parties either.

MyBrilliantDisguise Mon 11-Dec-17 12:06:18

I'm having the same problem. I wish there was someone else/another party worth voting for!

notheretoargue Mon 11-Dec-17 12:10:56

Exactly! Good to know we're not completely alone I suppose ....!

samG76 Mon 11-Dec-17 12:20:31

I wouldn't expect to agree with any party 100%, 75% would do me, and it would also be ideal if the party weren't involved in overt anti-semitism. I don't know what to do either....

IrkThePurist Mon 11-Dec-17 12:24:31

I've left Labour for exactly the reasons you give. There isnt a party I can vote for now in all good conscience.
I live in a Labour safe seat and will consider spoiling my ballot paper in future elections.

TwoPoint Mon 11-Dec-17 12:28:55

I have a vaguely similar problem; I left the Conservative party a couple of years ago.

I don't think you'll ever agree with any party 100% but I find current Labour abhorrent and Conservative incompetent and think that floating voters tend to be the most able to consider difficult arguments as opposed to blindly siding with one.

If enough people leave a party then it gives them proof that they need to rethink.

I'm Jewish too and the antisemitism is worrying.

mousemoose Mon 11-Dec-17 12:42:56

Yes I agree and very much see your point about the Jewish angle. Very concerned about the whole position of women in the party - Tories however crap have still had TWO female PMs now - where is the credible Labour equiv? Was lucky as had a great Labour candidate that I 100% wanted to vote for in election but in general feel massively disaffected and just as though they don’t care about people like me. Hard to know what to do.

notheretoargue Mon 11-Dec-17 12:47:07

I don't expect to agree 100% either, but the Labour Party doesn't seem open to healthy debate or different opinions any more, so now my disagreements seem more fundamental.

During the Gordon Brown years and also under Ed Milliband, I would often have healthy discussions with other members about what could be done better. But these days to criticise the leadership is considered some kind of treason. And that includes criticising their silence on matters of anti-semitism.

On the other hand, if I leave does that just mean I'm willingly silencing myself? Absenting myself from politics ...?

TwoPoint interesting that you're having the same feelings with regard to the Conservative party. I wonder if it's a crisis of political parties more generally.

Nikephorus Mon 11-Dec-17 13:24:24

Maybe you join a different party that doesn't piss you off on the really important things (like anti-semitism) and try and improve the things you don't like about them from the inside instead? A party that gets the big stuff wrong like that isn't going to change that easily by having a few members talking quietly in its ranks - it needs a big kick up the backside that members leaving en-masse will do (because that costs them votes) because that's basic decency. But a party that gets the smaller (relatively-speaking) things wrong is more likely to be influenced from the inside because it's less of a change of mindset.

gurteenKnowledge Mon 11-Dec-17 13:26:43

I think it is a crisis of political parties. Without a viable alternative, the parties become too radical.

Labour frightens me most at the moment. It's like a cult where no one should dare doubt the leader and anyone who thinks differently is nasty, hates the poor, hates the disabled blah blah blah. At least the Tories have a healthy dose of disdain for their leader.

What we need is a splintering moderate faction from both main parties. At the moment, neither are electable. The irony is, with Brexit on the horizon, Corbyn is historically anti-EU and May campaigned to remain. I think that that sums up our current political landscape quite succinct

Asthenia Mon 11-Dec-17 13:40:14

Of all the words you could use to describe Corbyn, I just really don’t think “ineffective” is one of them. It’s just not true 😂

allegretto Mon 11-Dec-17 13:42:46

If enough people leave a party then it gives them proof that they need to rethink.

I'm not sure this is true. I think it is far better to campaign for what you want from a party while being a member.

mareemallory Mon 11-Dec-17 13:56:34

Please stay. It's your party too. If you have the time a bit of enthusiastic volunteering can make a huge difference at a local level and from there there are lots of opportunities to influence things nationally.

Biber Mon 11-Dec-17 13:58:25

Hmmmm. Yes. I'm doubtfully holding onto my LP membership membership for all the reasons you mention but to my shame have not been following the Anti Semitic issue assiduously enough. Any links to a summary would be very much appreciated. Corbyn has blown it on Brexit as far as I'm concerned. Corbynism seems to have become a cult which I find rather disturbing to say the least.

Trying2bgd Mon 11-Dec-17 14:01:27

i don’t have a massive problem with Corbyn as his recent performances have been half decent. However I am unimpressed with his inability to deal with antisemism and misogyny in his party. Also it’s interesting how people are willing to ignore these things and vote for them anyway rather than vote for one of the smaller parties.

Julie8008 Mon 11-Dec-17 14:01:55

I am not really sure what the difference is between Jeremy Corbyns Momentum and the Labour party? Is Momentum not where all the decisions are made these days.

MissionItsPossible Mon 11-Dec-17 14:04:32

Social media, especially Twitter, has ruined politics, not just in this country, but worldwide. It's an echo chamber where everything they say is right because every response they receive agrees with them and the few comments people leave that disagree with them; they are shouted down by the echo chamber mob, reinforcing them that they are right and that everyone else is a raging bigot.

I read through a couple of the Trans threads sometimes and the hypocrisy of some posters complaining about being shouted down or labelled as a bigot or a transphobe disagreeing yet would quite happily insult and use the bigot/racist/snowflake label to someone because they are on opposite sides politically.

There's no actual debating anymore. It's each side shouting at each other and trying to make the other one look foolish.

FWIW I didn't vote in the last election. Nobody for me to vote for.

thatstoast Mon 11-Dec-17 14:55:01

Stay and make your voice heard.

My logic is that if Corbyn was able to survive the Blair years then I can get through this momentum nonsense.

gurteenKnowledge Mon 11-Dec-17 14:59:15


I don't understand your post.

Momentum loves Corbyn.

PinkHeart5914 Mon 11-Dec-17 15:01:57

Does anyone agree with a political party 100%? I doubt it. No matter what party you support you will never agree with every single policy they want to make or agree with everything they stand for.

Unless there is another party you completely agree with, then you stay and voice your opinion surely?

20nil Mon 11-Dec-17 15:13:49

Another party member with real reservations about Corbyn and momentum here. I'll never forgive Corbyn for his failure to campaign against Brexit but I also genuinely think that this current government is the worst this country has seen in decades. I like the Labour manifesto but I don't like the leadership. I want the Tories out but don't trust Corbyn not to mess up either. Luckily my local MP is fantastic so am happy to campaign and vote for her.

Sorry, that's really unhelpful. I'm hanging in because I believe in Labour's core values, but I don't rule out leaving if too many lines are crossed.

iboughtsnowboots Mon 11-Dec-17 15:25:53

gurteen I think toast means that Corbyn managed to hang out for decades in a party whose mainstream views were very different to his so she could maybe do the same now the party's mainstream views have changed to Corbyn's.

I don't think it's unusual to have disagreements with some party views , it depends how important the disagreements are to you. Europe is very important for me and Corbyn's unclear and lukewarm stance is a deal breaker for me, if social justice was your key issue I can imagine being able to get past this. If Kier was heading up Labour I could imagine voting for them.

makeourfuture Mon 11-Dec-17 15:35:11

Tory ideology targets poor, disabled and the sick. It is a terrible Social Darwinism aimed at those least able to fight it.

makeourfuture Mon 11-Dec-17 15:36:50

Tory economics strangle growth.

curryforbreakfast Mon 11-Dec-17 15:39:28

Expecting to agree with any political party 100% is naive, its not even possible, nor should it even be a goal.

What else are you going to do? Nothing? Vote for no-one. That'll help.

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