The first half of this strategy is going to prove very hard to deliver. It isn't easy to govern effectively and come up with a coherent set of post Brexit policies when you are leading a disunited party without a simple majority. Nevertheless I think it is more likely than not that they will cling on. Damaged by revolts and awkward defeats. Unable to inflict the most extreme version of Brexit on the country because of those revolts. Weakened by bad news on the economy and a stubborn failure of the public finances to balance. But bolstered by the conviction of the far right that if they can just get through this then they'll be free to remake Britain as a low tax, low regulation, clone of the worst of Donald Trump's America.
So we would be wise to expect that every effort will be made to steer us through the next 18 months or so with nice noises about a moderate common sense Brexit and a period of sensible transition. Any reasonable democrat would then put the deal to the British public in a General Election so that we could decide whether we wanted the realities of leaving or not. I don't think for one second that the Conservatives will voluntarily do that. Instead I expect that May's last act will be to sign a Brexit deal without proper scrutiny, resign and then allow a new leader to go to the country once we are saddled with actually having left.
Labour's attitude to all this is going to be critical. Many of the young people who voted Labour at the last election are firmly anti Brexit. The party is not. Nevertheless Corbyn's has every chance of continuing to gain in popularity. All he has to do is simply to attack every bad deal that comes out of the Brexit negotiations, point out the many bad economic indicators that are going to emerge, and energise his supporters around the conviction that it is all going to be so much better once he gets in.
When a tired, weakened and divided government is dealing with phenomenally complex issues and a strong opposition is on the attack there is usually only one winner. I therefore expect Brexit to go through but for it to be a Labour government which has the job of implementing it.
So for me the really important question of the next decade is what a post Brexit Labour government would do and whether it would be a success. If Labour comes to power on the back of huge expectations of change and then messes up badly the damage will be immense.
It seems to me that there are two ways it could fail. The first is to copy the path of Hollande who promised huge change and then delivered blandness. That finished off the French soft left every bit as effectively as Tony Blair damaged the British soft left and I don't for one minute think Corbyn and his team will make that kind of mistake.
The second way it could fail is to do a Venezuela. If Labour decides to embark on a re-run of Soviet style economic policies it will produce a crash and burn that will delight the far right and do permanent damage to progressive forces in this country.
I believe that there is a muddled battle going on in much of the thinking in the current leadership of the Labour Party. Those who were utterly disgusted by Blair's bland vision of a social democratic liberal free market economy essentially fall into two groups. One still holds far too much to the thinking of old fashioned Marxism and the heritage of the Soviet Union. It has a vision of society that is still expecting to find an industrial working class working in large factories and to get them to unite together to resist oppression and build a socialist state. This is an utterly out of date vision. It is simply impossible to construct an effective command economy of this nature in an era of fast moving small enterprises operating in a global society.
Fortunately there is a very effective alternative. Instead of indulging in nostalgia and relying on traditional Marxist thinking there are plenty of people who are trying to think afresh about the future. I believe that any progressive government in the modern era needs to construct policies that demonstrate the following characteristics:
1. Economic policy focuses on helping our country to be one of the first to switch away from fossil fuel and plastic technology. The government helps to foster industry that makes high quality sustainable products that people around the world want to buy. It also encourages the development of a high knowledge economy and a creative economy and stabilises the financial industries so that we restore international trust in their operation.
2. The focus is on improving lives of all groups within society. The lived experience of women dominates at least 50% of government time and thinking. There is a determination to construct a strong and diverse society which is confident enough to challenge illiberal practices even when they are defended as an important tradition for one group of that society.
3. We move beyond nationalism. We are happy to share sovereignty over decision making with other countries to take on international problems like the huge environmental challenge or tax avoidance. We balance this with a serious focus on localism. Power is restored to local government and there is a strong regional policy to balance the economy.
4. National, local and international government is prepared to strongly guide and influence the market in every area of its operation from housing through to farming but it doesn't try and tell the market which delivery options will work
5. We are prepared to challenge privilege and to transfer resources from the wealthy to make sure that all sections of society are able to contribute to the full. The dominance of corporate lawyers over policy makers is overcome by using the power of the reasonable opinion of a jury. If a jury thinks the overall effect of a company's actions has been to dodge legislation then a punitive fine is applied.
6. We dump the belief that good ideas can only come from one political party and open up our democracy to new thinking by reforming the voting system.
Clearly this is a pretty quick and simplistic statement of a different vision. Equally clearly many genuinely progressive thinkers would come up with a somewhat different list and place the emphasis differently. What is important is that people recognise that this kind of thinking comes from a radically different tradition to that of much of the Labour left in Britain in the past. It is also a vision that will work.
For me the critical question of the next two years is how far we can get policies of the new kind accepted by the members of any incoming progressive government and worked up in sufficient detail to be ready for rapid and effective implementation. If that happens then all the optimism that is being invested in the hope of change will have been well justified.
I remain really fearful that not enough of this new thinking has been thoroughly understood by Corbyn's team. We have one chance in a generation to achieve radical change. We need to make sure that chance isn't ruined by muddled old fashioned thinking and to question every policy proposal hard and long. It is not healthy for anyone on the left to simply cheer loyally from the sidelines. We don't need one monolithic party of the working class leading us without question. The only genuinely loyal approach at the moment is fierce criticism of every wrong step.