I think that whatever people’s actual view on something, the trait I really value is their self-consistency. Someone who believes Y because they believe X. Someone who will most likely believe Z because they believe Y. You get your basic values right, and everything follows from there. I don’t believe it actually matters what their beliefs are, as long as people are consistent with them. Most differences are merely a matter of priority in any case – A over B? or the other way? But I remember things and after they are inconsistent, their word means nothing to me and I don’t pay attention.

Just like with justice, the best politicians should be blind. If you believe in one thing, then you don’t put that belief to one side when the next issue comes along.

At the moment, therefore, I have a lot more time for some right-wing personalities than many left-wingers. I think Corbyn himself is highly principled, but I don’t get the impression that many of his followers are. I really don’t think you’ll get very far by saying what you’ve been told to say, by interrupting people so as to prevent them conveying their own message, and by simply making your own message louder each time. I have always been interested in current affairs, and have always leaned to the left, but that doesn’t stop me admiring some right-wingers. Whether I’d vote for them is a different kettle of fish.

And on the subject of Brexit, when I was a boy in the 1970s it was just a fact of life that this issue could split a party down the middle – that’s just how it was and we all just accepted it. So it remains a mystery to me why modern parties feel that they must show a unanimous view to people. I especially regret that each side is so intolerant of the other’s viewpoint. Plenty of decent, honourable people from all walks of life have highly principled views on this matter. Even though they might not share my view, it doesn’t make them any less decent or honourable.

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