Maghull – Comrades poke Corbyn in the eye with EU Flag?

Labour in Sefton Borough are keeping their heads down as their great party leader nationally seemingly argues more forcibly each day for a Brexit agenda that will inevitably lead to job losses, no extra NHS funding, the poor being made poorer and a crisis economy.

Yet maybe, just maybe they can see that Comrade Corbyn is leading them down a very sorry path because in full public view, if you look closely, Labour-run Maghull Town Council is still flying the EU flag on Maghull Town Hall!

A small act of defiance maybe and one that they would not like their Momentum masters to know about (so please don’t tell them) but is there just a chink of light following 4 Merseyside Labour MP’s breaking ranks to defy Corbyn recently?

Brexiters – Why do they rage against everything British?

www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/may/13/incontinent-fury-of-brexiters-who-rage-against-everything-british

The Guardian has the opinion piece on its web site – see link above

It is indeed utterly bizarre that many of those who made sure the House of Lords could not be democratically reformed are now attacking that very same institution because it’s trying to save the UK from a Brexit so dangerous to our economy, to jobs, to the NHS etc. etc. whilst the House of Commons falls behind May and Corbyn whilst not speaking out.

We live in very dangerous times when the House of Commons is so weak that only the unelected House of Lords is prepared to stand up for everything British.

With thanks to Roy Connell for the lead to this posting

Labour – Does anyone understand their muddled headed Brexit policy approach

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-43710728

The BBC has the story on its web site – see link above

The sad fact is that the Tories/DUP/UKIP have been given what is little less than a free pass by our Official Opposition over Brexit. As a progressive I’m ashamed to see a supposedly progressive party like Labour adopting almost childlike polity stances towards the biggest issue of our times.

Brexit will make is all poorer so the poor will suffer the most – what self respecting progressive party could possibly support such a process?

When the Right is controlling British politics – That’s most of the time!

It really is the majority of the time whether we on the left are willing to admit it or not.

There have only been 4 General Elections since the 2nd World war when the the left has had a significant majority in the House of Commons. Then again it could well be argued that whilst Tony Blair had a huge majority his was hardly a government of the left and probably it was only just left of centre. Could the same or similar be said of Harold Wilson’s Government?

What started this line of thought was that I happened upon a lecture by Vernon Bogdanor being shown on the BBC Parliament Channel recently. It was actually about the history of the Conservative Party. Now whilst I don’t care to be told about the regular electoral success of the Tories Bogdanor is always interesting, impartial and factual in his work.

One thing he mentioned has long been a matter of great interest to me and that is the working class Conservatives who have regularly helped put a Tory government in power. You could be forgiven for thinking that the working class (not a term a personally subscribe to but one that is widely quoted) will usually be voters of the left and therefore for Labour, but up to a third of them are not. What’s more many of them may be conservative (with a small c) or simply right wing whilst at the same time tribally aligned with the Labour Party.

I have regularly been fascinated by the group of Labour MP’s (and there have always been a fair number of them in each Parliament) who come over as reactionary, right wing, anti progressive politics or just Tories wearing a Labour rosette. I saw similar people in the trade union movement in my time as well. They must come from families that are loyal to Labour yet their stance on things such as equality issues, gay rights, crime and punishment, immigration etc. are firmly based on the politics of the right. Often these MP’s and trade unionists will be from the industrial midlands and the north and they will be utterly loyal to Labour, no matter what it stands for.

That loyalty will stem from the early days of the trade union movement and the need for trade unionists to stick together through thick and thin. It will have been inbred into them through families, trade unions and the Labour Party, yet often these people will be as far away from progressive politics as you can find. Sticking together is the most important thing, backing their leaders almost come what may is also big for them and I think it is what is in part driving the cult of Corbyn.

He’s either a very, very late political developer or he really is a second division politician of the left who has, almost by chance, found himself leading a political party. If you look at his history prior to being elected as Labour Leader he had pretty much no positions of responsibility in public life much at all. The Labour left will say that was because he had always been down-trodden by the right wing of the Labour Party (the Social Democrats) and held back and that he was always going to be a working class hero of the left one day. Well it’s a view but hardly a credible one I would venture to say.

Corbyn’s big problem is that he has some right wing tendencies and Brexit is the one that really stands out. Brexit has always been about internal battles within the Tory Party. UKIP was set up as those within the Tory Party who could not get the Tories to back leaving the EU felt they had to take a different route. Of course they succeeded in turning the Tories into a Brexit Party and they won over many people within Labour too. Remember the successes of UKIP electorally have often been in areas of England that are working class and where they won council seats they were often in Labour areas. Now UKIP has all but expired its supporters have drifted back to the Tory Party or indeed Labour. That Corbyn backs Brexit is bizarre to many of us on the left of British politics but he does and the Labour Party is backing him despite, we are told, the vast majority of Labour voters not backing Brexit.

But Corbyn is loyal to his right wing working class supporters who of course were the part of the Labour vote that helped the Tories/UKIP give us our Brexit. His party prides itself, or at least it used to do, on being a very broad church. At one end true socialists looking to break up the capitalist system and at the other people who would be at home in a Bluekip type Party if only it was called the Labour Party. That is indeed a very broad church, you could say so broad that internal power struggles would be almost impossible to to stop. The Social Democrats within Labour have gone very quiet these days (with a few exceptions) especially those in elected public positions as their stance is particularly unwelcome in Corbyn’s Labour Party and they need to be seen to be complying with the wishes of Momentum if they are not to be deselected.

So at face value Labour is presently seen to be a party of the hard left under McDonnell and Corbyn but, with Brexit in particular, they are peddling a Bluekip line. Also the party is having more than its share of infighting over racial issues at present and this is another indication of people of the left holding what seem to be intolerant right wing views.

Across Europe in many counties Social Democrat and Socially Liberal Parties have been a part of the mainstream. Labour has tried to be that in the UK but the drag of having illiberal and far left members in the same party has meant that it has struggled far more more than it has succeeded. Many thought that the victory of Tony Blair signaled a new (or New) Labour Party with broad center ground and moderate appeal but the medicine did not work and now Labour is in the hands of both the socially illiberal and hard left at the same time!

The point of all this? To show that the right has a huge influence on UK politics and that’s not just in the UKIP and Tory parties. Labour has it’s right wingers too and it can be quite easily argued that even the Lib Dems all but ceased to have a Socially Liberal leadership during Nick Clegg’s unfortunate time as Leader. Thankfully and even slightly surprisingly, under Cable, it seems to be regaining its radical and socially liberal edge though.

Which ever way you look at it the right usually predominates in UK politics and its because, in my view, there’s no electorally successful Social Democrat/Liberal Party at the heart of our mainstream politics and I say that as someone who looks upon some Social Democrats as being too right wing.

Merseyrail – RMT Dispute over loss of Guards, strikes and Jeremy

Merseyrail’s new Stadler Trains, to be delivered in a couple of years time, are at the heart of the dispute about driver only operated trains.

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-43259075

The BBC has an article about the next round of strike action on its web site – see link above

Oh no you might say Robertson’s banging on about those interminable railway strikes again. Well yes he is but from Jeremy’s perspective! You see a couple of days ago I saw a tweet from JC which said this:-

‘This @RMTunion film shows why it is essential to keep guards on our trains. Please share and support this important campaign. #KeepTheGuardOnTheTrain’

Well no problem with the tweet in itself BUT just hang on a minute Jeremy, why did Labour-run Merseytravel order new trains for Merseyrail that are intended to be run without train guards then? The RMT are right about Keeping the guards, in my view, but Labour is complicit in the guards getting axed here on Merseyside.

May I suggest to Jeremy that he tells his comrades on Merseyside that the order for trains meant to run without guards needs to be revised so that they run with train guards, then his Merseyside chums will no longer be embarrassing him.

Brexit, Momentum & the Labour Party

It seems odd but the Brexit policy stance of our Official Opposition in the UK is providing cover for our Bluekip/DUP Government of the ever further right. And yes it’s very uncomfortable for those of us on the left of UK politics who are vastly Remainers, but sadly it is where we are.

In some ways I understand that moderate Labour MP’s (who make up a majority of the Parliamentary Labour Party) are in the main keeping their heads down over Brexit, even though they know it will be a disaster for the UK. They do so of course because they fear deselection and or trouble from a Momentum dominated Party membership. But the longer they keep quiet the more Labour allows our appalling Government to push ahead on Brexit.

I am convinced that a joint credible Labour/Lib Dem/SNP/Green push against Brexit would all but finish off a deeply divided Tory Party.

But it seems we need not only moderate Labour MP’s but moderate Labour Party members to rise up to try to force a change in the Labour leadership’s pro-Brexit policy approach.

What’s the point of Labour trying to win the next General Election if it can’t carry out its spending pledges because Brexit has broken our weak economy into pieces? Why doesn’t the Labour Leadership see this for itself?

Yes I know loyalty to the Party is everything in Labour but surely the many Remainers in Labour can get to grips with the fewer Brexiters.

And the bottom line, Brexit will lead to the loss of things that the trade union movement has fought for over generations. Brexit is a Loss of Rights Charter for the ordinary man and woman – it must be stopped.