Two years after the failed Chicken Coup, Owen Smith is reminding everyone why he lost

Owen Smith
Support us and go ad-free

In 2016, the so-called Chicken Coup saw Owen Smith trying to replace Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader. It followed several months of the media and politicians dismissing Corbyn and his supporters as ‘naive’, ‘trots’, ‘entryists’, etc.

The Chicken Coup was a disaster, and actually saw Corbyn increase his vote share. As it turned out, what people wanted were new ideas and actual policies. What they didn’t want was to be labelled ‘trots’ for daring to want something better.

This was obvious to most people. And yet, nearly two years after the Chicken Coup, Smith is showing he still doesn’t understand what went wrong.


On 30 May, Smith tweeted:

There’s nothing wrong with blocking people on Twitter. Smith has made a few mistakes in his approach, though. We’ll explain those mistakes in detail, so hopefully he can use this as a learning experience.

Firstly, the idea that the Labour Party was infiltrated by Trotskyist entryists hasn’t really panned out. As such, repeating the term ‘trots’ makes you look like a bit of a ‘tin-hatter’. It’s also seen by many as meaning ‘anyone who disagrees with me’; a notion that Smith has done little to disprove:

Read on...

Support us and go ad-free

Another problem is that it just looks a bit childish:


Twitter is notorious for dragging people down to its level. If you’re an MP who can’t manage to tweet without coming off like a low-level ‘troll’, maybe it’s time to log off? Especially as your constituents can see how you’re behaving:

It’s also worth remembering that drawing attention to your blocking will ultimately draw attention to the sort of people you deem blockable:

And another problem could arise from the following complaint:

A complaint which comes off the back of Smith recently accusing a Twitter user of being part of John McDonnell’s staff:

Moving on

As bad as this looks, there’s still a chance for politicians like Smith to turn it all around. Calling people ‘trots’ and acting tough on Twitter has got them nowhere: it’s time they actually come up with some ideas on how to improve the country.

After all, they’ve had nearly two years since the Chicken Coup. Has that not been time enough?

Get Involved!

– Join The Canary, so we can keep holding the powerful to account.

Featured image via YouTube

Support us and go ad-free

Do your bit for independent journalism

Did you know that less than 1.5% of our readers contribute financially to The Canary? Imagine what we could do if just a few more people joined our movement to achieve a shared vision of a free and fair society where we nurture people and planet.

We need you to help out, if you can.

When you give a monthly amount to fund our work, you are supporting truly independent journalism. We hold power to account and have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence the counterpoint to the mainstream.

You can count on us for rigorous journalism and fearless opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right wing mainstream media.

In return you get:

  • Advert free reading experience
  • Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
  • 20% discount from our shop


The Canary Fund us

Comments are closed