If Corbyn is actually going to make a go of it, and if all of the new members are people (re)joining the Labour Party because they believe in him and his policies, then he is going to have to be utterly ruthless.
Local parties - seemingly more pro-Corbyn than the party’s MPs - are going to have to deselect Blair/Brown New Labour standing MPs (and just imagine how bitter that fight will become), and replace them with candidates who Corbyn could work with in a shadow Cabinet and in a Government - people with whom every simple thing isn’t going to be a struggle of compromise and barely contained hostility.
The real test would then come at the 2020 polls. Corbyn wins Islington comfortably (and I’m delighted he does, he’s my MP and he’s very good) - but will Corbyn-like MP candidates have any chance at winning new seats for Labour - or even in some constituencies, retaining the party’s current seat?
That’s the gamble I think. The current polling suggests that in the wider electorate, outwith the core of Labour’s membership, Corbyn is absolutely not well received. To have such a negative rating so early in his leadership term is worrying; that he polls less well than bloody Farage is a sad reflection of the state of the country’s politics as a whole. I hope he can turn it around, but I don’t think a Corbyn-like Labour has had a chance of winning in (particularly) England for a very long time now. It’s a huge task.
It would genuinely be all-or-nothing for Corbyn’s vision of the Labour Party. If he does that and wins, then bloody hell, we’re suddenly in brand new territory. If he does that and loses, then he has to go and Labour will need yet another wholesale back to the drawing board reimagination of who they are as a Party and who and what they actually represent.
If he does anything other than that, then Labour seems determined to remain a party riven by disagreements that are absolutely fundamental for the next few years, and I fear that means the Tories will win in 2020 by default.
The collapse of Labour is both sad, but it’s also scary. The prospect of not just another 4 years of Cameron, Boris, Osborne and their poisonous ilk, but another 9 years, is terrifying.