So what does our media – the Beeb and the Grauniad included – do in such circumstances?
It makes it up. Helped (and encouraged) by the likes of Tristram Hunt and Simon Danczuk, they fill their column inches with stories of chaos within the party. It is being taken over by Trots. It is filled with crazy leftists who wish to revert to something called ‘the politics of the 80s’. It is ‘unelectable’.
So I attended the first North Leamington branch meeting since the election with some trepidation. The Warwick and Leamington CLP supported Corbyn for the leadership. It was clearly full of ranting weirdos - bearded, sandal-wearing, vegetarian.
Of course, it was nothing like that. It was a meeting devoted to education, and the speakers were nursery teachers, secondary school teachers, FE lecturers and a particularly impressive sixth form student from the Trinity School in Leamington. Over the course of a two hour meeting, almost every aspect of the education system was examined and analysed in a lucid, constructive and coherent fashion.
As someone who graduated some 45 years ago, and whose children have long completed their education, my core interest was in the current state of nursery and primary education as it is affecting and will affect my grandchildren. In this context, I was appalled to learn of the new baseline assessment programme which is being imposed on children as young as four!
For those who, like me, were profoundly and disgracefully ignorant of this policy, it is yet another example of this government’s fixation with testing and the narrowing of the curriculum.
But this time, it applies to children of four and five years old. And the tests will take place within three weeks or so of their first attendance at reception class.
In other words, kids of four and five years old will be reduced to a number, a number which may well follow them throughout their education, because this will be used as a means of measuring their progress throughout primary school. It will be imposed top-down into nurseries. It reduces teachers to scorers.
You might think that in a meeting of Corbynistas, this would provoke angry and emotional outbursts. It didn’t. It stimulated detailed and rational debate about the nature of education itself, and structured opposition to policies which defy the views of those involved day-to-day with the care of our kids.
Because this is the new Labour Party, the new politics. Not sound bites about ‘education, education, education’; rather, principled and intelligent discussion of real issues.
I left the meeting significantly better informed of course. But also proud to be a member of this party, this movement, these people.
Today from the everysmith vaults: Still fascinated and intrigued by the parsing of popular music by Yo La Tengo. And that's where I am heading this minute, to see them live tonight.