Tuesday News Review

Goodbye Alan, it’s been emotional

I, for one, am fed up with the media myth which suggests that the Blairites were the cool dudes in the dull Labour gang, that they were popular and/or adored, and that they singlehandedly won general elections for the party. Did anyone ever say to themselves, “I’m voting Labour because of Alan Milburn”? Did people take to the street in protests when Blunkett was sacked from the cabinet? Did the likes of Patricia Hewitt, Geoff Hoon and Stephen Byers help or hinder the Labour re-election effort earlier this year, when they were outed by Channel 4’s Dispatches grubbing for cash? And did anyone really doubt that the ultra-Blairites like Milburn and Hutton were closer to the Tories, in their pro-market, pro-privatization, pro-rich ideology, than to the Labour Party, new or old? – The New Statesman

On Wednesday, he will deliver a speech on social mobility and confirm the disclosure in yesterday’s Sunday Telegraph that Alan Milburn has been appointed an independent adviser to the Government. John Prescott‘s furious denunciation of Milburn as a “collaborator” tells you all you need to know about the political symbolism of this coup: the former Health Secretary and one-time Labour leadership contender joins his fellow Blairite, John Hutton, and Labour’s star thinker on welfare, Frank Field, in the coalition’s Big Tent. David Blunkett is reported to be next on the list of invitees. Just as Blair wooed senior Lib-Dems and One Nation Tories to New Labour — what Alastair Campbell called “Operation Hoover” — so Cameron and Clegg are recruiting disenfranchised Blairites. – The Evening Standard

The party lost its way

The former chancellor will use the Donald Dewar Memorial Lecture to set out a staunch defence of his handling of the economic crisis, while at the same time criticising the failure of his party colleagues to tackle the question of how to cut the UK’s vast budget deficit. Mr Darling, who has announced he will step down from frontline politics after a new Labour leader is elected next month, will claim his party counterparts “lost their way” in the election campaign, in the latest broadside against the direction pursued by the party hierarchy in the run-up to the May poll. – The Scotsman

LABOUR crashed to defeat in the general election because they failed to “understand people’s lives,” a senior party MSP and MP admitted yesterday. In a damning analysis of Labour’s slump, which saw Gordon Brown dumped out of Downing Street after the loss of 91 seats, Margaret Curran said voters felt the party were “no longer on their side”. The Glasgow MSP and MP said Labour’s next leader must accept the party had lost touch with the people and needed to “be more representative” if they are to stand a chance next time round. – The Daily Record

Enthusiastic Nick takes the reigns

Britain’s coalition government has proved more radical and reforming than the “insipid mush” that critics predicted, Nick Clegg said today. If anything, the administration is “doing things too quickly”, he claimed as he took temporary charge of the Downing Street machine during David Cameron’s holiday. Clegg’s assertion that the Liberal Democrats have helped ensure that the coalition’s actions are “as fair as we can” was immediately challenged by the former chancellor, Alistair Darling, who accused the party of joining Conservatives in “dismantling the public sector, not with reluctance but with enthusiasm”, and providing the Tories with “the cover to go further and faster”. – The Guardian

Get over it

Ed Miliband today accused his critics in the Labour leadership race of “New Labour nostalgia”. In a hard-hitting response to former home secretary Alan Johnson and others, he accused them of resting on their laurels and failing to realise how angry core supporters had become. “Because of my rejection of this New Labour nostalgia I am the modernising candidate in this election,” he wrote in a Fabian Society article. Mr Miliband and older brother David are the frontrunners to succeed Gordon Brown. – The Evening Standard

Tags: , , ,

3 Responses to “Tuesday News Review”

  1. paul barker says:

    Darling was by far the most impressive figure in the last Government – why didnt he stand for the Leadership ? Why is he now retiring from Frontbench politics ?

  2. Mike says:

    expel them just like Militant
    Milburn, Hoon, Hoey, Fields,

    they just care about next pay cheque

  3. cashado says:

    Can’t we expel the rest of the “disenfranchised” blairites? Hazel Blears anyone? Took a £10,000 donation from notorious union-busting ’employment consultants’ Peninsular. Pigs, troughs and a disgrace to this once proud party!

Leave a Reply