Posts Tagged ‘change’

Wednesday News Review

09/06/2010, 07:39:06 AM

Count down

Abbott hoping to make the final cut

“Diane Abbott received a boost to her candidacy for the Labour Party leadership when Harriet Harman, the party’s deputy leader, nominated her yesterday. Ms Harman said she was doing so in the hope of helping to ensure there is a woman on the ballot paper, and will not cast her vote in the election this September.” – The Independent

“Mr Balls, the shadow education secretary, called on supporters to back Miss Abbott during an event held by the GMB trade union, saying that it was important for a woman to be in the race.” – The Telegraph

“BBC political correspondent Iain Watson said the three candidates so far are all Oxford-educated men in their 40s, and none of them are from the party’s left – unlike both Ms Abbott and Mr McDonnell. On Tuesday, acting Labour leader Harriet Harman said she was nominating Ms Abbott because she did not want to see a “men-only” contest.” – The BBC

 “Speaking on Tuesday Mr Burnham said he was confident he would gain the seven nominations he still needed, while Ms Abbott and Mr McDonnell – who failed in a bid to challenge Mr Brown for the party’s leadership in 2007 – did not appear close to a deal to transfer MPs to the other to ensure a left-winger made it on to the ballot.” – In the News


Facebook Twitter Digg Delicious StumbleUpon

Saturday News Review

05/06/2010, 08:09:59 AM

The candidates

“To read the two Milibands and Mr Balls was like staring with furrowed brow at an apparently fuzzy picture, focusing and refocusing your eyes, trying to snap the image into sharpness until your head aches — and you realise that it isn’t your eyesight: the picture itself is just a blur.” – Matthew Paris, The Times

Tom Watson MP calls on the candidates to "meet some real people"

 “All the frontrunners for Labour’s leadership are insipid-looking, clean-shaven boys from the suburbs. I can only get away with saying this because the nation knows we also have a prime minister and deputy prime minister who don’t yet shave. David Cameron and Nick Clegg are mollycoddled middle-class white men whose idea of an early shift is the Today programme radio car interrupting their morning cappuccino.”  Tom Watson MP, The Guardian

“The battle for the Labour crown has yet to start in earnest — nominations close next week. Yet there are already widespread fears among MPs and members about its conduct: that a rarified debate about the party’s future is leaving far behind the voters needed to return it to power; that the candidates so far — white, male, 40-something, professional politicians — lack diversity and life experience; and that in trampling over each other to distance themselves from the unpopularity of the last government they risk ditching the good bits of new Labour as well as the bad and the ugly.” – The Times

“LABOUR must return to its left-wing roots if it is to return to power in Westminster, one of the party’s most senior Welsh figures argued yesterday. Counsel General John Griffiths said his party must make it clear it is on a “moral crusade” and wants to redistribute wealth if it is to return to power. The Newport East AM claimed it is a mistake for Labour to hide its socialist ambitions in order to appeal to “Middle England”.” – Western Mail

“Mr Miliband also said Labour had failed during the election campaign to effectively communicate all its achievements over 13 years, which included the minimum wage and huge improvements to public services. Despite serving as foreign secretary under Mr Brown, he says Labour was “too timid” on the role of government in the economy.” – The Coventry Telegraph

Movement for change

Foreign Secretary David Miliband prepares to leave home for his summer holiday on August  2, 2008 in London. Earlier in the week Mr Miliband gave an interview that was seen as a clear challenge to the leadership of Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

David Miliband promises to double Labour membership

David Miliband will tomorrow present his blueprint for rebuilding the Labour party, announcing he is to channel a sizable portion of his campaign funds into retraining 1,000 Labour supporters as community organisers over the next three months. Attempting the first complete overhaul of a British political party with the techniques that helped Barack Obama into the White House, Miliband wants to turn the Labour party into a grassroots “movement for change”.” – The Guardian

“David Miliband will today set out plans to double Labour’s membership and give more powers to rank and file activists. The leadership frontrunner will say he wants to end the party’s previous era of “top down command and control”. If elected he will pledge to double the membership from 156,000 to 300,000 and hand members a greater say in the running of the party.” – The Mirror


“Pressure is mounting for a relaxation of Labour rules to allow a wider leadership contest than looks likely if the nomination thresholds are retained. Calls are expected to be made for an extension of the nominations deadline when members of the party’s ruling executive meet on Wednesday June 9, the day of the deadline itself.”- Tribune Blog

“Labour MPs have so far refused to heed calls from unions and left-wing pressure groups to help the outsiders gain enough backing. Many of the about 80 MPs yet to declare are from the new intake, making their nominations hard to predict.” – The Independent

“West Yorkshire’s Labour MPs are split over who to back for the party’s leadership contest. Shadow energy secretary Ed Miliband has won the support of 47 MPs including two from Leeds – Hilary Benn (Leeds Central) and Rachel Reeves (Leeds West).” – The Yorkshire Evening Post

Facebook Twitter Digg Delicious StumbleUpon

Monday News Review

31/05/2010, 07:45:59 AM

The candidates

Diane Abbott makes pitch to Sun readers

“”They all look, sound and think the same. I want to ask the difficult questions. The sort of questions Sun readers want asked.” But she faces a battle to win enough nominations to get her name on the leadership ballot.” – Diane Abbott, The Sun

“All that the contenders have to offer are their political skills, they are all creatures of New Labour. That makes them likable, good communicators and very clever; but the drawbacks are equally evident. They are all youngish men who have grown up inside the distortions of the adrenaline-fuelled life of government.” – The Guardian

“Ed Miliband said that he and David never fought during childhood because “we are both too weedy for that”. He said that he chose to stand for election so party members had a diverse choice. “The one thing about opposition is that it gives you the chance to renew,” he said. “It was an incredibly hard decision for me to decide to run against my brother. It’s unusual, to put it mildly.”” – The Telegraph  

Scotland & Wales make play for NEC seat

Iain Gray calls for NEC seats for Scotland & Wales

“Scottish Labour leader Iain Gray has said he wants greater influence in the UK party, after calling for a place on its ruling body. Mr Gray told BBC Scotland the time had come to give Labour’s Holyrood leader a seat on the national executive committee to “bind” the party together.” – The BBC

“LABOUR’S Scottish and Welsh leaders should have a say on how the party is governed by gaining a seat on its National Executive Committee, according to Iain Gray. The Scottish Labour leader said he had urged the party leadership challengers to allow him and Welsh leader Carwyn Jones to join the body that formulates policy” – The Scotsman

“Labour’s Scottish and Welsh leaders should have a say on how the party is governed, Iain Gray said. The Scottish Labour leader revealed that he has urged the leadership contenders to give him a seat on the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC).” – Press Association

Uniting the Union

“Mr Simpson and Mr Woodley are due to retire, and will be replaced by one general secretary, who will have a major influence on the Labour Party, of which Unite is the biggest financial backer. The odds are not in Ms Cartmail’s favour, because within each of the two unions that made up Unite there was an efficient vote-garnering machine.” – The Independent

“A moment of truth is approaching for Thigmoo – “this great movement of ours”, aka the UK’s once mighty trade unions, now facing their biggest test for 30 years as the Con-Lib coalition prepares public spending cuts that could threaten at least 500,000 jobs.” – The FT

Brown down

 “Gordon Brown has “good days and bad days” but is coming to terms with losing power, ex-Labour spin doctor Alastair Campbell said yesterday. Mr Campbell told the BBC the former Prime Minister was “reconciled to the fact that he didn’t win the election”.” – The Mirror

Facebook Twitter Digg Delicious StumbleUpon

Anthony Painter warns us off the non-existent centre ground

21/05/2010, 08:02:10 AM

Change is everywhere. And what could be better than change? It makes people wealthier, more free, more educated, enhances our status and opens boundless opportunities for all. Time for a change? It’s always time for a change.

The problem is that for a good portion of people ‘change’ is not something to celebrate. It is rather something to be anxious about. It makes you work harder. It means that a family needs two incomes rather than one. It generates insecurity and consumer demands that become increasingly impossible to meet. Not without maxing out on credit anyway. And suddenly not only your work but the entire financial structure of your life is at risk. Global financial crises tend to be local in their impact.

Change or change fatigue? Well, actually this election was a mixture of both. One Britain – change and comfort Britain – largely stuck with Labour. AB support for the party declined by a relatively modest 6% according to Greenberg, Quinlan, Rosner and by 2% amongst C1s. Amongst C2s it fell by 13% and by 11% amongst DEs. The country was divided in two. (more…)

Facebook Twitter Digg Delicious StumbleUpon