It would be welcome to believe that now the dust has settled and Boris has firmly planted his feet under the oakwood cabinet table, a moment of calm would envelope the country as we display that stiff upper lip we are famous for, irrespective of political opinion.

Whatever your views on the recent general election ­— call it a second referendum, a sham or a procession ­— either way it matters not, as faces old and new are cast into the political dustbin of history with little chance of recycling the wastage.

So why the annihilation for Labour? I wrote a few months ago as to how debate has been shut down in this country: how those who attempted diatribe about issues that grown-ups should talk about ­— the economy, Brexit, the NHS, immigration ­— have been for years cast aside.

Mild mannered folk, voicing opinion opposing the far-left rhetoric have been attacked in the most disgusting, vitriolic manner I have ever witnessed by the new radicals. Many of us have been personally attacked for daring to highlight the nasty tactics of the hard left (despite sitting in neither the red or blue camps) with the intensity of insults hurled magnified by the day.

The shout louds, despite their pummelling at the ballot box, have however won one mantle: social media. It is crammed to the rafters with those who believed Corbyn was the messiah, and that his extreme brand of jealousy politics was the fillip the country needed, while they dismissed his questionable past and his party's abhorrent inability to deal with anti-Semitism.

Immediately after the election vote count, those who were incapable of accepting defeat in good grace, were arguing that the election was a fix by ‘the rich’ to keep the working classes down. Owen Jones and Kevin Maguire were visibly incandescent with rage as they refused to concede that their leftfield views, and support for such a front bench team had been counterproductive in their aims of the reds reaching the corridors of power after a decade-long hiatus.

It was a rerun of Brexit: long term friends cast others aside as they continued hell bent in their summation that they could not possibly be wrong, that Abbott was stateswomanlike in her quest to be Home Secretary, despite not being able to put on a pair of shoes correctly. They defended Labour's inability and unwillingness to tackle the scourge of racism, Corbyn’s refusal to show a modicum of patriotism, his inability to criticise the criminalisation of former servicemen who are being hounded in court to prove a political point. They skipped over the pictures of him with the IRA top brass and other such undesirables, the quotes of his support for dubious causes and his voting record.

It was too much for the average Joe and eventually did for him, despite the chants of ‘Oh, Jeremy Corbyn’, which lend a cultish tinge to their proclamations, continuing as he tried to style it out at a vote count in a sports hall.

To be annihilated in the manner they have been, especially in their northern heartlands, against arguably the weakest Tory administration in generations tells you all you need to know. The left and the country need, nay, demand, a strong leader to hold the ruling party to account.

Sadly, in my view, they missed a trick when they let David Miliband slip through their fingers. However, the problem now is thus: all the apparent contenders to fill Corbyn’s Hush Puppies backed him and his brand of radicalism, which tried and failed twice to take us to the promised land of socialist nirvana.

These leadership contenders, including Starmer and Long-Bailey, did not speak out against him and publicly backed his policies, no matter how perverse, which has left us asking how can we trust them or their judgement ever again?

The answer is we can’t, and wont. What is required is a fresh, new face: one who has opposed Corbyn and his less than merry band of renegades, and who can give the left the new lease of life that it is desperate for, while clearing out the timber yard full of dead wood.

Corbyn, despite acting like the drunken uncle at a kid’s birthday party as he outstays his welcome, should fall on his sword with immediate effect closely followed by his disciples. Despite advocating radical change in their manifesto, it seems such change does not apply to the shadow cabinet, as the Labour party lurches into more of the same as they head toward another beating in five years’ time.

So, in the end, the consensus was as clear as it was damning. This was not so much a mandate for the Tories who, through their ravenous social reforms have brought public services to the brink, but another protest vote. This was a protest against Corbyn’s Labour for their extreme views and continual blocking of Brexit. The Lib Dems also did not escape unscathed after ill-advisedly flicking the bird to 17.4 million people.

It’s time we all took a break from politics until the new opposition leader is announced on the April 4. Those who backed the wrong horse should accept defeat gracefully and look inwards toward themselves as to why the outcome was as it was. Could they have ceased the attacks and attempted rational debate? Did they have to castigate others as Nazis and scum at every turn? Could they have at least tried to control the emotive response to differing opinion?

Only when some contrition comes, and a new level-headed opposition leader is secured, will the Labour Party come back from the brink to anywhere near what it should be. In its current guise they are not fit for purpose and if change is not forthcoming, and soon, they may find themselves, like Corbyn, as a political footnote in history.

  • Brett Ellis is a teacher