It is significant that Starmer is following the example of Johnson a year ago when he (Johnson) expelled the likes of Dominic Grieve, Philip Hammond and Ken Clarke. Subsequently, he enforced a compulsory commitment to his Brexit plans from every Tory candidate. Not one refused.
It would appear that Starmer is pursuing a similar course. He has sacked Rebecca Long-Bailey. He has introduced the politics of abstention. And he (or, as he has argued, his unelected General Secretary) has suspended Jeremy Corbyn.
What’s more, he (or, as he has argued, his unelected General Secretary) has forbidden Labour members to discuss these issues. And he (or, as he has argued, his unelected General Secretary) has suspended members and officials who have gone ahead and discussed the implications of his actions.
Further, peevishly, he has now withdrawn the whip from the newly reinstated former leader. And posted on Twitter a crass and lengthy thread which is ill-written, inaccurate and self-serving.
I cannot judge whether this attack on the left and campaign of self-aggrandisement has reached its climax. If not, it must be pretty close.
I am, however, unconvinced that his determination to purge the party of those who are not of his persuasion (you may think as I do that this is a form of the factionalism of which he accuses the left) has come to an end. Despite the huge numbers of resignations and the even greater numbers of subscription cancellations, there are still many of us remaining. And we will not go quietly.
He has a name which is revered in the party. (Had I had a son, he would have been called Keir also.) He was a human rights lawyer. He was elected on a series of pledges, all of which have been forgotten or contradicted since the election itself.
It is clear that his agenda is and has been to take back control of the Labour party.
His machinations during the General Election campaign leave no doubt that his plan was to undermine the party and its leader and seize the opportunity. And it came to fruition.
As leader, he has abstained a great deal and whipped his MPs to do the same. He has, in his words, exercised supportive opposition. Only after months when the conversation amongst members centred on the growing evidence of cronyism and corruption has he mentioned it in Parliament.
His actions, rather than his words, have been exclusively against the left. Just as Johnson’s were against the Remainer Tories.
But the events of last weekend have shown that Johnson has seen the error of this approach. Cummings is going. Cain is no longer enabled. The spin is now of a new, more mellow leadership from Johnson, a new, more compassionate conservatism. Yeh, right!
Perhaps Johnson or Carrie sense that, despite the propaganda of the mainstream press, the Cummings strategy is fatally flawed in the long term. You cannot govern when your party is “like rats in a sack”.
And Starmer should watch, listen and learn. Because Labour is not his party. It is ours.
Today from the everysmith vaults: A friend sends me a link to a magazine article which lists the best Ry Cooder albums in order of merit. I didn't agree with any of the placings. But it did remind me of one album which was placed somewhere in the mid-30s out of 50. The soundtrack to Performance, with jagger and Anita Pallenberg, directed by Nick Roeg. I had not listened for decades, but I should have done.