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Saturday, 10 September 2016

Choose your battles



Never contend with a Man who has nothing to Lose; for thereby you enter into an unequal conflict. The other enters without anxiety; having lost everything, including shame, he has no further loss to fear.
Baltasar Gracian - The Art of Worldly Wisdom (1647)

Why did Theresa May choose to resurrect the battle over grammar schools and selective education? She may feel strongly about it as many do, but the issue is controversial and Jeremy Corbyn should have no trouble making political capital from it.

Unfortunately for May, she has now engineered a situation where she must contend with a Man who has nothing to Lose

10 comments:

Michael said...

Quite a good way to divert Brexit discussions.

A K Haart said...

Scrobs - maybe, but it could just as easily add to her tactical problems instead of changing the focus.

Sam Vega said...

He may have nothing to lose, but on this issue, he has nothing to gain, either. May's battle will be against unions, recalcitrant professionals, mouthy academics, and (most importantly) the inertia of the system. Whatever Corbyn says on the matter will be irrelevant. The hard left have already made up their mind to support him, and he has already alienated everyone else.

wiggiatlarge said...

Difficult for Corbyn to toe the Labourline on Grammar schools when he went to one himself as did a large part of his front bench, not a strong position from which to argue, mind you as with most things on the left they don't normally have a lot of trouble being hypocrites, his "doorblocker" the Abbopotamus being a prime example where schools are concerned.

James Higham said...

Afraid she's not very good at what she does.

Sackerson said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K4anNb2jS4Q

A K Haart said...

Sam - Corbyn's only personal asset seems to be his demeanour which is not threatening. Given a series of divisive moves by May, habitual Labour voters could take the trouble to vote where at the moment they wouldn't.

Wiggia - as you say, they don't normally have a lot of trouble being hypocrites and they have to take what they can get.

James - this move suggest not.

Sackers - reminds me of a sketch about a guy trying to jump across the Channel. Corbyn's task is easier but not much.

blissex said...

«Difficult for Corbyn to toe the Labourline on Grammar schools when he went to one himself»

What a revolting comment: that was chosen for him by his parents.

As to his own choice, he divorced because he wanted to send their children to a comprehensive:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3127962/Labour-leadership-hopeful-Jeremy-Corbyn-left-wing-divorced-wife-refused-send-son-failing-comprehensive.html
«Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn has admitted that he divorced his wife of 12 years – because she refused to send their son to a failing comprehensive school.
Mr Corbyn, speaking about the split for the first time since making it onto the Labour leadership ballot paper this week, admitted that he felt 'very strongly about comprehensive education' and could not agree to send his son to a grammar. [ ... ]
He said: 'I don't like dragging personal things into my political life. And I think it's very sad when that happens. I don't criticise anybody else for what happens with their children, and I don't expect people to interfere with my children's lives.'»

Compare with:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/rachel_sylvester/article6853007.ece
«A No10 aide admits that Brown does not have the natural empathy with the middle classes that Blair did. "The moment Tony sent his son to the Oratory those voters thought - 'he gets it'," he says.»

wiggiatlarge said...

blissex
What is revolting about a true fact, his wife wanted to send the kids to a better alternative than the "failing" comprehensive he wanted to send them to on a purely idealistic basis ?

And when has he said that their subsequent education was pants or condemned his then lovers choice of schools for her kids as being the wrong choice or any other of his front bench for the same thing, as usual with the left an argument for not publicly haranguing colleagues for making the wrong political choices and then telling the country the opposite is good for them is the highest form of hypocrosy, and do they have form.
A bit like his supporting Brexit for all his political life and then feebly telling the country for fear of tearing the party apart ha ha ha the opposite

A K Haart said...

blissex - see reply by Wiggia.