It is always fascinating as a reader to observe a columnist on a “journey” moving across the ideological spectrum. Prompted either by a dramatic development, or just by reading and thinking, they begin by questioning nostrums to which they or their newspaper signed up to. Sometimes they end up switching sides entirely.

Such a transition is terrific entertainment and indicates that the columnist concerned uses their brain properly. Anyone on the left, right or in the centre who has lived through the last 15 years, from 9/11 through the financial crisis and the Brexit vote, who has not changed their mind on anything is either too much of an ideologue, or an idiot, or sometimes a combination both. For some reason Jeremy Corbyn’s face popped into my brain there.

It is too early to say definitively that Owen Jones – the celebrated Corbynista, author and writer of Socialist columns for the Guardian – is shifting. Jones is always worth reading, for his fluency and style, but his tweets of late in particular suggests something interesting is happening.

Jones was an enthusiastic Corbyn supporter in the early days (last year) of the “Jez we can” movement. Disappointment seems to have set in when it became clear that Corbyn polls off the charts (badly) with the voters of England. Owen Jones is now recommending a rethink by the Corbynistas when Jez wins on Saturday. For this thought crime Jones is being accused of selling out by some Corbynistas, mainly because he suggests that to win Labour might have to appeal to voters who don’t vote Labour. His suggestion that it might be worth trying to woo the self-employed (around 4.6m people) was deemed beyond the pale.

His tweets suggest a growing frustration with the cultists of Corbynland. The young hordes are being lied to. The hard left leadership has always wanted to destroy Labour and is getting its way. The hard left is actually pro-Tory (seriously) because it wants a Tory government there to get the blame when the supposedly inevitable collapse of capitalism comes. Then there can be a revolution. Jones seems to have realised that this is not an advisable strategy.

I wonder – pure speculation this – if seeing the far left close up, and their inability to organise anything other than destruction and persecution of opponents, has prompted a rethink? If you believed in a state-run command and control economy, in which, say, supermarkets, all housing and airlines were run by the government (this has been tried, not successfully) and then you encountered the people who eventually want to do the running after the revolution, and you are bright like Jones, wouldn’t doubts start to percolate? Would you want Team Corbyn to run anything? I wouldn’t send them out for a loaf as the old saying goes.

Of course, many thinkers on the mainstream left went through an earlier version of this process. The “Blairite scum”, as they are called by Corbynistas, that won three elections were supported by a cadre of people who had begun far out to the left in the 1960s and 1970s but who realised that Socialist economics was unworkable. They were mugged by reality. Socialism is simply a daft way to attempt the production and distribution of food or cars. The market is a marvel, imperfect but meeting the needs of hundreds of millions of people as the result of hundreds of millions of individual decisions not centrally directed by government. The mainstream left accepts the market and is interested in how it is regulated, and harnessed for revenue, its proceeds redistributed. That’s the mainstream centre-left or it was under Blair. Is Jones moving there? I’ll keep reading to find out.

They’ll make a Blairite out of Owen Jones yet…