Voting in the Labour leadership election closed at midday yesterday, with it looking very likely that a Corbyn victory on an increased majority will be the result announced at conference this Saturday. I was on BBC Radio Wales yesterday morning to talk about where this leaves Labour. Does it have any prospects as a party of government under Corbyn? Can the soft left and centre hope to regain control of the party? And is Labour ever going to confront the political fragmentation of the Union?
That last is a question I’ve been thinking about a lot, partly because I think Labour’s difficulty with articulating a positive idea of statehood, and consequent vulnerability to to electoral pressure from nationalists, is probably intimately connected to the left’s susceptibility to anti-Semitism (and, given Dworkin’s analysis of the conceptual intimacy between anti-Semitism and misogyny, its sexism too). I haven’t thought this through entirely yet, but since Labour looks in no danger of pulling itself together imminently, I’m sure I’ll have plenty of time to work on it. Anyway, follow the link below to hear me on Good Morning Wales.
Listen on iPlayer (from 00:05:55)
The BBC One religion and ethics discussion show Sunday Morning Live hosted a discussion this week about the Nottingham Police initiative to record misogynistically motivated offences as hate crime (a subject I wrote about last week for the New Statesman). Melanie Jeffs of Nottingham Women’s Centre was there to explain the background and intent of the strategy; and Jon Gaunt was there to railroad the discussion into wolf-whistling, because violence against women is just no fun to bloviate about. I supplied some feminist side-eye, and the whole show is on iPlayer now.
Watch the show on iPlayer (sexism package starts at 20:00)
BBC Radio Wales invited me on this morning to help dissect last night’s Labour leadership debate – the first in a series of nine face-offs between Jeremy Corbyn and Owen Smith, and one that set a combative tone for the contest to follow. With Smith pitching himself as “the socialist who can win” as opposed to Corbyn as “the socialist who can’t”, policy differences crystalised in some hard fought scraps about Tribent, the EU and anti-Semitism in the party. Did either of them do enough to change Labour voters’ minds?
Listen on iPlayer (from 00:07:20)
Hillary Clinton has won the Democratic nomination so the glass ceiling is O-V-E-R – OR IS IT? I spent an hour yesterday evening fielding calls on Stig Abell’s LBC show about whether the wage gap exists (yes), whether women really are as good as men (yes), whether feminism should be renamed “equalism” (oh my God shut up), and whether it’s fair for women to be given the same opportunities for career advancement as men (uh, yes). Fun for me, and a treat for all fans of me telling men to stop talking because it’s my turn.
Download the show as a podcast (subscription required)
The Labour Party continues to be ridiculous, and BBC Radio Wales continues to ask me on to talk about it. Yesterday, Labour Party donor and Corbyn-critic Michael Foster lost a High Court bid to overturn the NEC’s decision that Corbyn should automatically have a place on the leadership ballot. Follow the link below to hear me discuss that, and what it means for the deep divisions in Labour, with host Oliver Hides
Listen on iPlayer (from 00:43:00)
5 Live’s Afternoon Edition invited me on to discuss whether Hillary Clinton winning the democratic nomination really does represent the shattering of the class ceiling, with Mara Rudman (former national security official for the Obama and Clinton administrations). It was a really enjoyable piece to do – because this does feel like a genuinely celebratory moment, and because Rudman’s measured career politico style couldn’t cover up her own joy in it. There’s a really interesting semi-disagreement/finessing of the point about rights, privilege and honouring the work of the women before us towards the end of the segment that I’ve been thinking on since we recorded it, too.
Listen on iPlayer (from 01:12:00)
On Monday morning, I was on BBC Radio Wales to talk about the Labour Party leadership contest and the travails of the party in general. In brief: Corbyn will win, the party is sexist, and can we all stop pretending that being “opposed to austerity” is a meaningful thing please.
Listen on iPlayer (from 02:05:00)
I was on Phil Hammond’s BBC Radio Bristol show on Saturday morning, with the wonderful artist Alex Lucas, talking – almost incredibly after the week we’ve all had – about things that make us happy. For the full skinny on swimming in cold water, dogs with eyebrows, and songs that sound exactly like fancying someone, have a listen.
Listen to the show on iPlayer (from about 01:00:00)
I talked about the EU referendum on BBC Wales’s breakfast show, Good Morning Wales: Harry Phibbs (of Conservative Home) argued the Leave case, and I did the talking for Remain. Actually I went into a long complaint about the paucity of leadership and vision in the Remain campaign, but I did manage to say a few positive things.
Listen to the discussion on iPlayer, from 35:00
BBC Radio 4’s The World Tonight hosted a discussion between me and Yasmin Alibhai-Brown about Glastonbury’s women-only tent the Sisterhood (actually an area for anyone who “identifies as a woman”). Act of cowardice that bizarrely imitates Islamist segregation, or a noble vision made necessary by the terribleness of men but doomed to failure by gender identity politics? (It’s the last one, obvs, but have a listen anyway.)
Listen to the discussion on iPlayer, from 39:00