Topics about the Labour Party
:sunglasses: 42.1 % ❤ 5.3 % :thumbsup: 5.3 % :grinning: 36.8 % 😟 5.3 % :cry: 5.3 %
Tubby Isaacs wrote:Some clown who used to write speeches for Blair has popped up.
But Philip Collins, a former speech writer to Tony Blair, warned that Labour was in danger of handing the political initiative to the Tories, as polls showed strong support for a crackdown on welfare. In his weekly column in the Times, Collins wrote: "This week the tanker of politics started to turn. The benefit cap – which limits welfare payments so that no family can receive more than average after-tax household earnings – was introduced. Housing benefit cuts began to bite.

"Then the grotesque Mick Philpott became the stooge embodiment of all that is said to be wrong with a culture in which the idle take the rise out of the working population. We may look back on this as the week in which the coalition began to speak again to the British public while the forgetful Labour party slunk back on to the sofa."
Yeah, because trifles like feeding Philpott's children can be overlooked. Anyway, what did your man do? Same as Ed Milliband, wasn't it?
Collins is an arse-clown. This is what I hate about Blairism, particularly its current variant as embodied by people like Hodges and Rentoul. They say they want to win elections, but to no particular end. Power without principle. If Labour can't even stand up to the disgraceful stuff that's being bandied around about Philpott and the welfare state then what's the point?
Last edited by new puritan on Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
If Labour can't even stand up to the disgraceful stuff that's being bandied around about Philpott and the welfare state then what's the point?

New Puritan I seem to recall several Labour MPs including Ed Balls criticizing Osborne for what he said about Philpott." onclick=";return false;
National Anglia wrote:Think np is referring to the Dan Hodges/Phillip Collins types.
I was. I just can't see any aim in their politics at all. Obviously they've made decent careers peddling this stuff, but it's just so wishy-washy. There would really be no point to the kind of Labour party they want to see.
Oh look, it's another 'major intervention' from the Vicar. He's got a piece in the New Statesman. The first paragraph sets the tone, and there are no surprises here: ... ples-anger" onclick=";return false;
The paradox of the financial crisis is that, despite being widely held to have been caused by under-regulated markets, it has not brought a decisive shift to the left. But what might happen is that the left believes such a shift has occurred and behaves accordingly. The risk, which is highly visible here in Britain, is that the country returns to a familiar left/right battle. The familiarity is because such a contest dominated the 20th century. The risk is because in the 21st century such a contest debilitates rather than advances the nation.
It would be a bit baffling, after yet another failure of economic liberalism, if people weren't willing to listen to more interventionist suggestions. This is rather lacking in substance. What's debilitating the nation is a crippled economy and an increasingly frayed social fabric, likely to be frayed further by the cuts.
The Labour Party is back as the party opposing “Tory cuts”, highlighting the cruel consequences of the Conservative policies on welfare and representing the disadvantaged and vulnerable (the Lib Dems are in a bit of a fix, frankly).

For the Conservatives, this scenario is less menacing than it seems. They are now going to inspire loathing on the left. But they’re used to that. They’re back on the old territory of harsh reality, tough decisions, piercing the supposed veil of idealistic fantasy that prevents the left from governing sensibly. Compassionate Conservatism mat­tered when compassion was in vogue. But it isn’t now. Getting the house in order is.
But the Tories aren't getting the house in order. The economy is, at best, bouncing along the bottom. Unemployment remains elevated, as does underemployment. Even the deficit, which they've practically fetishised, is going nowhere when you take Osborne's accounting tricks out of the equation. The Tories are floundering around in the low 30s in the opinion polls, where they've been for the best part of a year. They're not the machine they were. They're a party without a purpose - they're boxed in by Thatcherism, and even though its failure is comprehensive they can't bring themselves to ditch it.
For Labour, the opposite is true. This scenario is more menacing than it seems. The ease with which it can settle back into its old territory of defending the status quo, allying itself, even anchoring itself, to the interests that will passionately and often justly oppose what the government is doing, is so apparently rewarding, that the exercise of political will lies not in going there, but in resisting the temptation to go there.
I really don't understand this argument when it comes from Blairites. I mean, what Blair is arguing for is the status quo - clinging even more tightly to the New Labour blueprint. It's not 1994 anymore.
The guiding principle should be that we are the seekers after answers, not the repository for people’s anger. In the first case, we have to be dispassionate even when the issues arouse great passion. In the second case, we are simple fellow-travellers in sympathy; we are not leaders. And in these times, above all, people want leadership.
Meaningless guff I'm afraid.
On the economy, we should have one simple test: what produces growth and jobs? There is roughly $1trn (£650bn) of UK corporate reserves. What would give companies the confidence to invest it? What does a modern industrial strategy look like? How do we rebuild the financial sector? There is no need to provide every bit of detail. People don’t expect it. But they want to know where we’re coming from because that is a clue as to where we would go, if elected.
These are precisely the questions which are already being asked. But to be honest, the questions about reconstructing the financial sector and developing an industrial strategy were dodged for pretty much the entirety of Blair's reign. It says a lot that he still isn't prepared to offer any answers to the questions he poses.

He does at least point out that it wasn't public spending which caused the crisis in the first place. But then he advises against tacking left on tax and spending - so reading between the lines, he wants to see cuts. But the next Labour government, assuming we get one in 2015, will inherit a steaming pile of shite. Public services are likely to be inadequate, the workforce will still be low-paid and low-productivity, the population will be ageing, and it seems unlikely that there'll be any sustained economic rebound by then. I don't see how the next government is going to begin to tackle any of those problems without spending lots of money, to be honest.
This argument also fatally fails to understand the politics of this particular moment. In a way that’s understandable – Blair has been out of power for nearly six years, and living in a rarified environment for sixteen years – but it also means that his advice should be taken with a pinch of salt. He speaks with the dispassionate detatchment on what one might called the Davos Left. ... chnocracy/" onclick=";return false;

'Davos Left' - love it. Might have to nick that one.
new puritan wrote:Oh look, it's another 'major intervention' from the Vicar. He's got a piece in the New Statesman. The first paragraph sets the tone, and there are no surprises here: ... ples-anger" onclick=";return false;
Labour should be very robust in knocking down the notion that it “created” the crisis. In 2007/2008 the cyclically adjusted current Budget balance was under 1 per cent of GDP. Public debt was significantly below 1997. Over the whole 13 years, the debt-to-GDP ratio was better than the Conservative record from 1979-97.
Agreed Tony so why don't you get behind your party and go out there and argue it, instead of writing self serving articles. Thats what Alistair Campbell does for all his faults.
Don't agree with the way this is being reported as Blair offering 'advice' to the Labour leadership. He isn't. Look at the timing - the last great Blairite hope has just exited stage left. Blair's trying to gee up his remaining faithful within the PLP and beyond to defend what he sees as his legacy. It's pure vanity. I wish he'd just piss off and count his money or something.
Further reaction ... 68148.html" onclick=";return false; ... ed-Ed.html" onclick=";return false;

I see the Sun's resorted to calling him 'Red Ed'
This could be the shape of things to come ... ttles-come" onclick=";return false;
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You beat me to it, Arrer :)

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