In a change from talking to each other on Twitter, online-lefties are getting together this weekend to work out how they can break-out from their hitherto introverted conversation. True to their ideals Netroots will be their Central Planning Committee. With TUC money behind it the more bonkers elements of the unpopular side of the blogosphere are having a get-together to work out the best way to republish lines from Tom Watson’s attack unit and make it look like an organic, genuine grassroots operation. It will probably turn out to be a frothing, righteous but ultimately meaningless circle-jerk.
Guido has some advice for the on-message bloggers of LabourList, Next Left, Liberal Conspiracy, Left Foot Forward, Political Scrapbook et al. Today shows just where you are going wrong. So blind are you in your partisan tribal loyalty that not a single one of you could bring yourself to report on a convicted thief because of the colour of the rosette he once wore. This head-in-the-sand mentality is why you are only preaching to the choir. The coordination which is evident in some of the simultaneous choices of subject matter is transparently obvious – it doesn’t do your readers any service to all be saying the same thing about an issue simultaneously – in fact it is a turn off for readers to see the same thing that they have read elsewhere.
ConservativeHome looks at issues of concern to Tory activists entirely differently to the panglossian way the Labour blogosphere by and large treats internal issues. Tim Montgomerie is respected by the Tory body politic because he is candid. Even forgiving its McBride-directed past, LabourList will not really be respected by the Labour Party machine so long as it reads like a fanzine. Political Scrapbook, which like Guido aims to cover politics in a more entertaining and accessible way, invariably ignores Labour bad news stories. Is that really best for their readers?
The online left are well to the left of ordinary Labour voters, in America the “nutroots” online crowd was quietly despised by the Obama campaign’s operation because they were flaky lefties. The more influence the UK nutroots crowd have on Ed Miliband the better as far as Guido is concerned, they will drag him to the left and away from the voters. The nutroots crowd’s support for the counter-productive violent student demos shows they just can’t see what a turn off lefties are to the voting public. So all power to the nutroots, may they succeed in dragging the Labour Party as far to the left as they can…