Posts Tagged ‘unity’

Labour is ceasing to exist

05/11/2015, 02:09:03 PM

by Atul Hatwal

It’s not often that the election results for Labour’s backbench PLP committee chairs are notable, but today’s announcement lays bare the scale of division within the parliamentary party.

via the New Statesman

e-mail to MPs announcing the result, via the New Statesman

The majority of the chairs have ruled out serving under Jeremy Corbyn on the frontbench and specifically oppose key tents of his positions on the policy areas that their committees cover. They are taking their fight to the backbenches.

This is just the latest development in a rapidly accelerating process.

Labour is slowly ceasing to exist as a political party. Like those images of Marty Mcfly’s relatives in his photo, it’s fading away.


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Corbyn’s calls for unity are rank hypocrisy. Don’t be surprised if they go unanswered

20/08/2015, 10:54:07 AM

by Sam Dale

“Unity is our watchword,” says Jeremy Corbyn on his campaign website as he sets out his plan to heal the party after a bruising leadership contest.

On the site he has a “unity statement” and calls on members to sign the pledge that aims to bring the party back together after months of in-fighting.

“The leadership election should be conducted with one thought in mind: our objective is to be a united party focused on winning the general election and campaigning across the country, day in day out,” he writes.

He has also penned an article for the New Statesman claiming the party must unite after the contest is over and how he’ll do it if he’s leader.

By way of example, he insists the main reason the party lost in 1983 was because it was divided.

“The Labour left was fighting a passionate but often inward-looking campaign for party democracy and several figures on the right of the party spent much of that election denouncing the manifesto,” he writes. “It’s no surprise we lost.”

It is astonishing to read these words coming from the pen of Jeremy Corbyn. And astonishing he can do it with a straight face.

If only we were more united then there is nothing we can’t achieve, he seems to argue.

This is hypocrisy.


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If Jeremy Corbyn wins, we need to make it work

07/08/2015, 09:43:54 PM

by Brian Back

Let’s face it: with so little time left before members vote for a new leader, it is time that we stopped the shouting, insults and dire forecasts for the future.

It is time to face the facts.

It is time that we took a calm, pragmatic view of the possibility of a Corbyn win. Whilst we should not stop campaigning for the other candidates, we have to face the fact that a Corbyn win is a real possibility. That being the case, how should we deal with this prospect?

So far, everyone seems to be asking the wrong questions regarding the possibility of Corbyn becoming the new Labour leader.

Some have asked whether those in the centre-ground of the Labour party should split, and start a new party, if Corbyn wins. That is not a sensible question, because forming a new party would just split the left-wing vote, thereby guaranteeing a Tory win at the next election. Also, most members would stay with the Corbyn-led Labour party, as would the unions, so the new party would have few members or activists, and very little funding, as well as a very short life-span.

Others have asked whether the centre-ground MPs should stage a coup and force another election contest. This is not sensible either, as disunity and conflict are the biggest problems we face; problems which, if not dealt with, always spell electoral disaster, and a coup would only make things much worse. Furthermore, the next contest would probably be won by Corbyn again, but with a bigger majority, as Labour members react with fury against MPs who are seen to ignore members’ wishes.


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Would Corbyn really lead us back into the political wilderness?

17/07/2015, 11:19:35 AM

by Brian Back

Let me make this clear from the start; I am backing Liz Kendall for the leadership of the Labour Party. I believe that she has the vision, the strength, the passion, conviction and charisma that we require in a leader, if we want to be successful.

When I read that Jeremy Corbyn was ahead in the polls, I was understandably dismayed. However, my dismay came; not at the thought of Corbyn leading the party, but at the thought of how members of the party would react to this news.

I was right to be dismayed, as various explanations of how Corbyn would be a disaster for the party soon surfaced and the predictable spats on social media dutifully followed. This has clearly demonstrated to me, that the biggest danger we face within the party, is not the issue of going too far to the left, right, or centre, but the problem of disunity.

It is division, rather than political position, which should be our primary concern.

All Labour members must remember we are defined much more by what unites us, than what divides us. We all want the same thing- a fairer society; only our methods for achieving this differ.

As long as we are guided by the values and principles we profess to hold- those of fairness, equality and democracy, then any of the candidates should be able to do a decent job of leading the party.

Every one of the candidates has grown and bloomed, because of the demands of the leadership contest and they have all shown themselves to be very worthy of our support.


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Thursday News Review

23/09/2010, 07:58:50 AM

It’s almost over

The five-month long contest for the Labour leadership ended tonight as the ballot closed, leaving the two Miliband brothers, David and Ed, waiting until Saturday afternoon to discover which of them will be given the task of leading the party. The result, which is said to be too close to call, will be announced at the opening of the party’s annual conference in Manchester, giving the new leader two days to prepare his set-piece speech to the conference. Both camps exuded private confidence that they had won, but also stressed that the victor would reach out not only to his brother, but also to rival supporters to heal any wounds inflicted during the contest. – The Guardian

The 109-day leadership election is over. On Saturday 25 September, the 20th leader of the Labour Party will be announced at its annual conference in Manchester. His name will be Miliband. Whether the victor is David or Ed – and we have made clear our preference for the latter but also our admiration for the former – the challenge facing the new leader will be the same. How will he rebuild a party that slumped to its second-worst vote share since 1918? How will he refresh and re-energise Labour, which left office after 13 years demoralised, fractious and hollowed out? And how, above all, does the new leader persuade the electorate that the party can once again be trusted to form a government and manage economic policy? – The New Statesman

What now?

David Miliband made a plea for unity yesterday as the ballot closed in the contest for the Labour leadership. Mr Miliband, the slight favourite ahead of his brother Ed, said the contest had been “hard and tough”. He added: “Whatever the result on Saturday, we have all said we will unite behind the party’s choice and turn all of our energy into exposing the new government and presenting a strong Labour alternative. “This is a vital time for the country, which needs a strong Labour opposition.” – The Mirror

Four long months after it wheezed into life, the Labour leadership contest has proved one thing beyond doubt: for all the ideological gymnastics of the New Labour years, the party’s political centre remains much where it ever was – on what used to be called the soft left. Spurning the most laissez-faire aspects of the Blair and Brown years has been obligatory. Ahigh pay commission and living wage are the season’s policy must-haves. Equality is all the rage; even David Miliband has been chided by the Times for looking dangerously social democratic. What has happened to the party’s right? Most of its remaining number are clustered around MiliD, and aside from the odd pop at “Red” MiliE, keeping shtoom. But do not be fooled: they are as fired up as ever, and preparing for a return once the membership gets back to leaflets and balloons. – The Guardian

Waiting game

Plans to inform candidates 30 minutes before the announcement, after removing mobiles, reminds me of the TV carry-on surrounding the 2007 deputy leadership. Sky did a deal with Alan Johnson’s enforcer, Gerry Sutcliffe, to receive a signal as the hopefuls left a briefing room before entering the hall – if Sutcliffe departed wearing glasses, Johnson had won. Reeling at a narrow defeat, Sutcliffe forgot and emerged four-eyed. So Sky News wrongly reported that Johnson had triumphed. The BBC reached an understanding with one of Hattie’s entourage under which arm a handbag would be carried. Thus the Beeb correctly predicted that Harperson would be crowned. Look out for unusual nose-scratching in Manchester. – The New Statesman

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