Visit ArabTopics.com

Book review: Game Changer: Eight Weeks That Transformed British Politics by Steve Howell

Book review: Game Changer: Eight Weeks That Transformed British Politics by Steve Howell
by Ian Sinclair
Peace News
August-September 2018

Achieving 40 percent of the vote – a record breaking 10 percent increase on its 2015 performanceJeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party carried off one of the biggest political upsets ever at the 2017 general election, dealing a serious blow to the Tory government and broader neoliberal ideology.

Steve Howell, the Deputy Director of Strategy and Communications in the Labour leadership team, gives a detailed and engaging insider account of this game changing campaign. Diplomatically written, there are no big reveals. However, there are many interesting nuggets of information that will be of interest to activists.

Though Corbyn’s team defines itself in opposition to New Labour, much of the political methodology of the Blair era continued to play a vital role: focus groups were used to road-test soundbites, media contacts carefully cultivated and communications agencies employed.

Social media strategy was central to Corbyn’s success, Howell argues, allowing Labour to bypass the mainstream media. They advertised on Snapchat, invested significant energy in Twitter and Facebook and purchased Google Adwords, meaning a Labour advert would appear next to Google searches of terms such as “Dementia Tax” and “Shoot-to-Kill”.

Howell also emphasises the influence of Bernie Sanders’ popular campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, which he witnessed first-hand in California. Though Corbyn’s large ‘Feel the Bern’-style rallies were derided by many commentators for preaching to the converted, an LSE study found the Labour vote share rose by almost 19 percentage points in constituencies visited by the Labour leader. Imitating Sanders’s strategy, Labour even employed a “narrative consultant”, with Howell seeing the effective deployment of emotive “narrative arcs” highlighting Labour’s positive and “transformational” offer to the nation as the key to victory.

One note of caution appears during the BBC Question Time Leader’s Special, when Howell notes Corbyn looked uncomfortable answering questions about whether he would ever use the UK’s nuclear weapons (retaining Trident is Labour Party policy, even though Corbyn himself is a lifelong anti-nuclear campaigner).

With the Tories bound to focus on this potential weakness at the next election, this is an critical issue where peace activists have the knowledge and organising skills to make a positive intervention. Because while Howell’s book naturally focuses on the role of the leadership team, it is important to understand it is the mass movement/s behind Corbyn that played the decisive role in getting him elected Labour leader, protected him from attempted coups, underpinned the extraordinary 2017 election result – and will likely be the deciding factor at the next election too.

Game Changer: Eight Weeks That Transformed British Politics is published by Accent Press, priced £15.99.

Source: 
Ian Sinclair

Dear friends of this aggregator

  • Yes, I intentionally removed Newsbud from the aggregator on Mar 22.
  • Newsbud did not block the aggregator, although their editor blocked me on twitter after a comment I made to her
  • As far as I know, the only site that blocks this aggregator is Global Research. I have no idea why!!
  • Please stop recommending Newsbud and Global Research to be added to the aggregator.

Support this site

News Sources

Source Items
Pass Blue 19
Dilyana Gaytandzhieva 12
John Pilger 408
The Real News 367
Scrutinised Minds 27
Need To Know News 1463
FEE 2897
Marine Le Pen 214
Francois Asselineau 25
Opassande 53
HAX on 5July 220
Henrik Alexandersson 454
Mohamed Omar 223
Professors Blog 10
Arg Blatte Talar 37
Angry Foreigner 15
Fritte Fritzson 11
Teologiska rummet 32
Filosofiska rummet 64
Vetenskapsradion Historia 107
Snedtänkt (Kalle Lind) 168
Les Crises 1692
Richard Falk 105
Ian Sinclair 74
SpinWatch 50
Counter Currents 5680
Kafila 322
Gail Malone 33
Transnational Foundation 221
Rick Falkvinge 86
The Duran 6214
Vanessa Beeley 91
Nina Kouprianova 9
MintPress 4421
Paul Craig Roberts 1039
News Junkie Post 44
Nomi Prins 21
Kurt Nimmo 191
Strategic Culture 3119
Sir Ken Robinson 16
Stephan Kinsella 59
Liberty Blitzkrieg 776
Sami Bedouin 61
Consortium News 2078
21 Century Wire 2790
Burning Blogger 272
Stephen Gowans 66
David D. Friedman 125
Anarchist Standard 16
The BRICS Post 1445
Tom Dispatch 384
Levant Report 17
The Saker 3226
The Barnes Review 461
John Friend 348
Psyche Truth 146
Jonathan Cook 135
New Eastern Outlook 2919
School Sucks Project 1725
Giza Death Star 1492
Andrew Gavin Marshall 15
Red Ice Radio 559
GMWatch 1698
Robert Faurisson 137
Espionage History Archive 34
Jay's Analysis 672
Le 4ème singe 86
Jacob Cohen 197
Agora Vox 9740
Cercle Des Volontaires 415
Panamza 1527
Fairewinds 103
Project Censored 683
Spy Culture 337
Conspiracy Archive 57
Crystal Clark 11
Timothy Kelly 469
PINAC 1482
The Conscious Resistance 494
Independent Science News 65
The Anti Media 5195
Positive News 820
Brandon Martinez 30
Steven Chovanec 61
Lionel 258
The Mind renewed 207
Natural Society 2401
Yanis Varoufakis 775
Tragedy & Hope 121
Dr. Tim Ball 62
Web of Debt 121
Porkins Policy Review 332
Conspiracy Watch 174
Eva Bartlett 547
Libyan War Truth 270
DeadLine Live 1895
Kevin Ryan 61
BSNEWS 1949
Aaron Franz 179
Traces of Reality 166
Revelations Radio News 119
Dr. Bruce Levine 103
Peter B Collins 1291
Faux Capitalism 205
Dissident Voice 9242
Climate Audit 219
Donna Laframboise 332
Judith Curry 1039
Geneva Business Insider 40
Media Monarchy 1893
Syria Report 70
Human Rights Investigation 90
Intifada (Voice of Palestine) 1685
Down With Tyranny 9723
Laura Wells Solutions 26
Video Rebel's Blog 407
Revisionist Review 485
Aletho News 17247
ضد العولمة 27
Penny for your thoughts 2579
Northerntruthseeker 1976
كساريات 37
Color Revolutions and Geopolitics 27
Stop Nato 4567
AntiWar.com Blog 2600
AntiWar.com Original Content 5941
Corbett Report 2029
Stop Imperialism 491
Land Destroyer 1087
Webster Tarpley Website 894

Compiled Feeds

Public Lists

Title Visibility
Funny Public