Tendance Coatesy

Left Socialist Blog

Jeremy Corbyn: Nick Cohen goes Barking

with 24 comments


Why I’ve finally given up on the left. Nick Cohen.


‘Tory, Tory, Tory. You’re a Tory.’ The level of hatred directed by the Corbyn left at Labour people who have fought Tories all their lives is as menacing as it is ridiculous. If you are a woman, you face misogyny. Kate Godfrey, the centrist Labour candidate in Stafford, told the Times she had received death threats and pornographic hate mail after challenging her local left. If you are a man, you are condemned in language not heard since the fall of Marxist Leninism….



I leave it at that.

If I claim that Nick has serious mental heath issues I will not doubt be accused of wishing to intern him in a old style Soviet psychiatric  hospital






Written by Andrew Coates

September 18, 2015 at 10:52 am

24 Responses

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  1. If only it were true! I don’t believe for one minute that Nick Cohen has “given up on the left”. He has had nothing to say for years other than how dreadful the rest of the left is, and how it simply isn’t worthy of him. He will continue recycling the same old schtick, because that is what pays his fees and salary.


    September 18, 2015 at 11:52 am

  2. I think Coatesy and Francis are both being a bit unfair to NC. He (NC) has written some good stuff over the years (and continued to do so up until very recently) and told the left some uncomfortable truths about itself. If he really has “given up” on us, then it’s our loss.

    Jim Denham

    September 18, 2015 at 1:57 pm

  3. I can see NC’s concern in that para. Those of us who have been LP members for a reasonable amount of time (particularly those of us who ditched Trotskyist activism a long, long time ago for a more pluralistic organisation where people can have open, grown-up arguments without being “denounced” as neocon, Zionist, neoliberal imperialist whatevers…) are a little worried by the rather fervent, simplistic and dogmatic nature of some of the new intake. Less of an issue for me, as my branch is rather sedate. But I’d hope that Labour retains its pluralistic, “broad church” character – and that new arrivals respect that tradition.

    alex ross

    September 18, 2015 at 3:04 pm

  4. Jim, I often hear this about Nick Cohen. It would be interesting to know what good stuff he has done and quite what uncomfortable truths he has come up with. I suspect his ‘good stuff’ is entwined with his very obvious bollocks. Given how he has been a shit for years now I personally have no desire to pile through it to discover a few pearls.


    September 18, 2015 at 5:55 pm

  5. Of course, if JC’s opponents were to desist from calling him a Nazi, a fascist, an anti-Semite, a Stalinist, an apologist for jihadism, a lunatic etc. etc., then Nick Cohen’s plaintive wails about being called a Tory might evoke sympathy rather than a faint nausea…


    September 18, 2015 at 7:54 pm

  6. I find Cohen interesting in that he is absolutely obsessed with the left — hence my dubbing him the Cohen-o-Matic: he can hardly describe his dinner or his holiday or the neighbour’s cat without getting into an unholy rant against us.

    Perhaps there’s some psychological explanation. Is he actually a former member of a left group, who still can’t get over his youthful folly even by perpetually reminding us of our unwholesome ways. We all made mistakes when we were young, but I’m sure we don’t feel the need to bang on about them to the world up to, and his case way past, the point of obsessiveness.

    Dr Paul

    September 18, 2015 at 11:25 pm

  7. Francis…have you much evidence of people *actually* calling Corbyn a “Nazi, a fascist, an anti-Semite, a Stalinist, an apologist for jihadism, a lunatic etc. etc.,” …as opposed to people questioning why he spends time **voluntarily associating** with known anti-semites, Stalinists, Jihadis etc. (with none of the “dirty hands” excuses that a politician with a Foreign Policy remit might have for dealing with such people)? It’s an important distinction, and the defensive reactions of the far left to perfectly sensible questions are not very edifying, in my view.

    alex ross

    September 19, 2015 at 12:10 am

  8. Alex – click on the link to Harry’s Place (right hand column), take a look at the comments threads there. There’s all the evidence you need.


    September 19, 2015 at 12:26 am

  9. To Cohen’s lasting credit is his denunciation of the SWP and SWP-influenced left’s alliance with clerical fascism (aka Islamism) and the same current’s repeated and systematic apologism for brutal tyrannies and barabaric movements (The Taliban, Assad, Putin’s Russia, etc etc). Cohen, by his own account, was born into a CP household, which may account for what Dr Paul describes as his “obess(ion) with the left.” He clearly never expected any better from the Tories, but when the left panders to dictators and fascism there is indeed, a particular sense of outrage and betrayal that can, indeed, appear to be an obsession.


    September 19, 2015 at 12:13 pm

  10. Except Charlie that this Blog and Shiraz Socialist have been remorseless in denouncing this alliance with Islamists, going back to the creation of Respect and the dubious politics connections of the Stop the War Coalition.

    In the AWL publications and in Chartist (in my case) we have made these views, which span this spectrum of the democratic socialist left and include a lot more people I could mention, perfectly clear.

    That does not mean that we ‘giving up’ on the left.

    We are part of the left Cohen is screaming about.

    Andrew Coates

    September 19, 2015 at 1:22 pm

  11. Despite having little time for dogs,’Nick Cohen goes Barking’ is too cruel an insult, even for them.

    The bit where NC talks about the left inexorably moving to the right … hilarious.

    redkorat☭ (@red_korat)

    September 19, 2015 at 2:24 pm

  12. Nothing is too good for the enemies of the ‘hinternational working class!

    Andrew Coates

    September 19, 2015 at 4:41 pm

  13. “That does not mean that we ‘giving up’ on the left. We are part of the left Cohen is screaming about”

    I don’t disagree, Andrew.


    September 19, 2015 at 6:47 pm

  14. “To Cohen’s lasting credit….”

    Cohen has no lasting credit. He burnt his bridges years ago. Just because he is against violent Islamism and the odd leftists who tolerate them does not make him a saint. He is a prick and that is why he is paid.


    September 19, 2015 at 6:55 pm

  15. I think more insults utilising lampreys are required – ‘Nick Cohen is a big arse lamprey’ or some such — it’s pretty hard to feel any empathy for their reputations being traduced by association with NC.

    redkorat☭ (@red_korat)

    September 20, 2015 at 3:46 am

  16. ” if JC’s opponents were to desist from calling him a Nazi, a fascist, an anti-Semite, a Stalinist, an apologist for jihadism,”

    I’m an opponent and don’t call him such things and no sane opponent would but I get very sick of what are real concerns about rising antisemitism in Europe being dismissed like this. Though not a a fascist, an anti-semite etc he is very attractive to such people. Jenny Tonge for instance, has decided she likes the cut of his jib:-


    Islamists see him as a hopeful sign. From 5 Pillars, the fairly disgusting Islamist site run by the fairly disgusting Dilly Husain:-

    “More than anything else, in the eyes of British Muslims, Corbyn may be the one politician who might talk some sense about extremism, terrorism and foreign policy. To British Muslims, Corbyn appears to be the floating, buoyant lifebuoy in the near distance water that is needed to keep afloat the drowning community. Burdened by the onslaught of the ‘thought police’ being prepared as part of the new extremist and counter extremist five-year policy. The one where ‘Penguin’ says we have got to be more ‘intolerance to tolerance’. !.

    Corbyn’s vociferous challenge to Channel 4’s questioning about his reference to Hezbollah and Hamas as ‘friend,’ signals the danger of trying to navigate through foreign policy issues in the light of a strong world Zionist lobby which stifle debate and vilify those who attempting to engage into dialogue with the perceived ‘enemy’. “



    September 20, 2015 at 10:46 am

  17. Rising anti-Semitism, rising nationalism, rising racial/ethnic/religious intolerance and exclusivity etc. etc. are all serious problems. There are lots of politicians out there stoking them for political advantage. Is Jeremy Corbyn one of them? I see no evidence for that.

    As for what Islamists think – so what? Thinking has never really been their strong suit. Much the same can be said of most Lib-Dems, come to think of it…


    September 20, 2015 at 11:49 am

  18. “Dubious connections of the Stop the War Coalition”… of which Corbyn was chairman until yesterday!


    September 21, 2015 at 5:45 am

  19. kb72 opposes Corbyn? Is that because she’s either supporting, or abstaining from opposition to, ‘austerity’, a million people being dependent on food banks, cuts, bankers bailouts, privatisation of services to benefit Tory mates, grannies freezing to death in their flats, [snip] the ongoing ‘national security’ scares to justify war without end, and the deliberate monetisation of all spheres of human interaction?

    redkorat☭ (@red_korat)

    September 21, 2015 at 6:36 am

  20. Tory PM shown his face yet today? Nick cohen shud write a column supporting his sex act with a dead pig and criticise CORBYNISTAS AND THE LEFT%%@!!!! for being prudes and shit like that.

    m_jelly (@monsieur_jelly)

    September 21, 2015 at 9:38 am

  21. A source, who is now an MP, is also quoted in the book as saying that during Mr Cameron’s initiation into the society he “put a private part of his anatomy” into a dead pig’s mouth.


    Andrew Coates

    September 21, 2015 at 12:22 pm

  22. Andrew Coates

    September 21, 2015 at 12:28 pm

  23. Andrew Coates

    September 21, 2015 at 12:36 pm

  24. Chinese whispers. It was actually a dead Trot.

    John R

    September 21, 2015 at 1:00 pm

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