“but theresa may isn’t part of the right wing of the conservatives afaik”
Which is true but that isn’t an absolute measure, since she is still right of the EU, regardless of how left of the conservative party she is. It’s fuzzy logic :)
So here’s the thing. Brexit, and I’ve said this before, is not a political topic. It is a set of apolitical fields (science, tech, law, economics…) that we have allowed to be hijacked under the banner of politics. That’s not the same thing. Politicians don’t have the foggiest what’s going on and the UK civil service in particular doesn’t possess nor retain enough skill in the necessary topics compared to the private sector and worse, compared to the aides and advisors helping on the EU side. I definitely agree that we can be “more wrong” but in reality, as with all systems and processes, we need two things:
- Initial condition(s) — what is our starting position. The closer the starting position, the better the outcome (less to negotiate)
- Process [competence] — The process to get from the initial condition to the desired optimal outcome on both sides.
The Corbyn left, as sh*t as it is, is closer to the EU left, so has the greatest promise, except, he couldn’t organise a team nor create a robust position without distraction, he starts from an initial condition which is closer to the EU, but has no inclination to use it and is a Eurosceptic anyway. This is almost exactly the opposite of May.
So we’ve got two folk:
- May — Even in her initial position as furthest left of a mainstream party, itself significantly right of the EU, has a bunch of incompetent ministers and no skilled negotiators. So she cannot translate that position into anything but abject failure. She loses on initial position and process.
- Corbyn — Much closer to the EU on an initial condition, but doesn’t have the process nor inclination to tackle it. So he cannot translate that position into anything but abject failure. He loses on initial condition and indeed, he throws it away (but no deal and a bad deal are the same thing).
The reality is that the EU is left leaning centrism, the one group we don’t want is right wing anything at the start and our centre is right of their centre. So even if May held a centrist line, which she has never held as it happens (she’s always been right of centre in her attitude as Home Secretary and her votes in favour of extremist political measures in austerity), she’d be unable to translate it. Neither of them could.