Daily Archives: September 29, 2015

Did Corbyn’s speech confirm the main argument of his critics?

This Writer doesn’t agree with any of what follows. It was written by Ian Dunt for politics.co.uk – but does he have a point?

I was glued to the television while Corbyn was giving his speech, and each new policy revelation was a delight. Not only that, but Mrs Mike liked it too. Doesn’t that suggest Mr Corbyn was hitting exactly the right notes to win the approval of the vast majority of ordinary people?

Mr Dunt doesn’t think so. He writes:

Of all the speeches Jeremy Corbyn could have made, this was the most predictable and the most useless. There was no thematic content, no idea unifying what he was saying, no quality in delivery, no attempt to speak to the public outside the hall, no plan for the future and no sign he is prepared to work with the media to communicate his appeal more widely. It was the speech of someone who either doesn’t care or isn’t capable of speaking to anyone outside of his immediate supporters.

Source: Corbyn’s speech confirmed the main argument of his critics

What do you think?

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If David Cameron believes in the “northern powerhouse” why has he abandoned the Redcar steelworkers?


According to politics.co.uk…

It is the government’s duty to step in and secure the steelworks so that we do not lose the industry on Teesside for good. The industrial marvel that is Redcar blast furnace cannot be allowed to collapse because the government is turning its back. It is a national asset for British steelmaking which needs to be properly mothballed so that when the global market turns, we can start producing again.

David Cameron has a clear opportunity here to show he believes in the future of UK industry. If he truly wants to see a ‘march of the makers’ and a ‘northern Powerhouse’, he must step in and secure our steelworks.

The Tories claim state aid rules prevent them from acting but other countries in Europe including France, Germany and Italy have all taken action to support their steel industries. We need to see the same positive approach by the British government.

Source: If David Cameron believes in the “northern powerhouse” why has he abandoned the Redcar steelworkers?

So, what do you think will happen? It’s time for a poll.

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Labour promises to renationalise English railways

The Labour conference has formally committed itself to the renationalisation of the English rail network as it pledged to oppose another round of “unneeded, unwanted and ill-thought-through privatisation”.

Labour’s national executive committee agreed a statement that paves the way for the rolling renationalisation of the rail network.

“Conference opposes another round of unneeded, unwanted and ill-thought-through privatisation,” it said. “We believe there is a better way.”

Source: Labour promises to renationalise English railways | UK news | The Guardian

So Labour is returning to policies of nationalisation, to protect British assets. This is a welcome change from the neoliberal policies pursued by the party during the late 1990s and 2000s.

But the Grauniad, reporting the new policy direction, couldn’t resist another dig at Jeremy Corbyn. The report said the decision was “a significant boost for the party leader… who has suffered a series of setbacks over the EU and Trident”.

Watching his speech today, you could tell he wasn’t a man suffering from setbacks!

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Daughter of ‘fit for work’ suicide man takes human rights case to UN

Excellent news. This Blog was calling for Anne-Marie O’Sullivan to take further action after the facts about her father’s inquest became known.

Now the UN will need supporting evidence to show that it is unlikely that Mr O’Sullivan’s was an isolated case.

If you have a late relative who was mistreated by the benefits system, please get in touch with the United Nations investigation.

THE grieving daughter of a disabled man who took his own life after being wrongly declared fit for work is getting help from Scottish disability rights campaigners to take his case to the United Nations over human rights violations and also make an official complaint to the General Medical Council (GMC).

Medical adviser Dr Stephen Carty, an Edinburgh GP and medical adviser for the Black Triangle campaign group, is helping Michael O’Sullivan’s daughter Anne-Marie compile a complaint against the GMC’s handling of her father’s assessment and their failure to act.

As part of the UN’s investigation into Iain Duncan Smith’s welfare reforms, they are putting together a dossier of information about the 60-year-old’s tragic case.

Details of a coroner’s report, which ruled that father-of-two O’Sullivan died as a direct result of being found fit for work by the UK Government’s disability assessors, was exposed by the Disability News Service investigative journalist John Pring last week and it’s the first time the UK Government’s ruthless welfare cuts have been blamed for the death of a claimant.

Source: Daughter of man who committed suicide after being found fit to work takes human rights case to UN | News | The National

Contact details for the UN Human Rights team are as follows:

United Nations Human Rights
Jorge Araya
Secretary of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Groups in Focus Section
Human Rights Treaties Division
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
OHCHR-Palais des Nations,
8-14 Avenue de la Paix,
CH-1211 Geneva 10,
Switzerland.

E-mail: [email protected]

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Fresh Labour v Tired Tories in a war of the words

—Bright, fresh and popular: Jeremy Corbyn and deputy Tom Watson meet the public on their way to the Labour Party conference in Brighton.

—Bright, fresh and popular: Jeremy Corbyn and deputy Tom Watson meet the public on their way to the Labour Party conference in Brighton.

The contrast is so strong it is painful – and for the Tories, the worst of it is that they have set themselves up for the fall.

On one side we have Jeremy Corbyn. In his speech to the Labour Party Conference, the new leader made a joke of commentators who have been trying their hardest to talk down his success.

“Some media commentators who’ve spent years complaining about how few people have engaged with political parties have sneered at our huge increase in membership,” he said.

“If they were sports reporters writing about a football team they’d be saying:

“’They’ve had a terrible summer.

“‘They’ve got 160,000 new fans.

“‘Season tickets are sold out.

“‘The new supporters are young and optimistic.

“‘I don’t know how this club can survive a crisis like this!’”

In response, according to fellow blogger Alex Little, Tory Chief Whip Michael Gove put out the following statement:

“Labour have confirmed that they are a threat to our national security, our economic security and to the security of everyzzzzzzzzzzzzz…”

Sorry – nodded off there for a moment. The last bit was going to be “family in Britain”, one feels sure – as it’s the same dull drone that the Tories have been using to bore us ever since pig-fancying PM David Cameron used it in response to Mr Corbyn’s election victory more than two weeks ago.

Tired Tories.

Fresh Labour.

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At last, a politician who appreciates the social media

150929corbynsocialmedia

Jeremy Corbyn was keen to ring the changes in his speech to the Labour Party conference – not just regarding politics.

He took a few swipes at the mainstream media response to his election as Labour leader, before going on to praise the social media as an instrument of information – and change.

“You might have noticed in some of our newspapers they’ve taken a bit of an interest in me lately,” he said.

“Some of the things I’ve read are this. According to one headline ‘Jeremy Corbyn welcomed the prospect of an asteroid “wiping out” humanity.’ Now, asteroids are pretty controversial. It’s not the kind of policy I’d want this party to adopt without a full debate in conference.

“Another newspaper went even further and printed a ‘mini-novel’ that predicted how life would look if I were Prime Minister. It’s pretty scary, I have to tell you. It tells us football’s Premier League would collapse, which makes sense, because it’s quite difficult to see how all our brilliant top 20 teams in the Premiership would cope with playing after an asteroid had wiped out humanity.

“And then the Daily Express informed readers that – I’m not quite sure how many greats there are here, but I think there are three or four – great-great-great grandfather, who I’d never heard of before, was a very unpleasant sort of chap who apparently was involved in running a workhouse. I want to take this opportunity to apologise for not doing the decent thing and going back in time to have a chat with him about his appalling behaviour.

“But then there’s another journalist who had obviously been hanging around my street a great deal, who quotes: ‘Neighbours often see him riding a Chairman Mao-style bicycle.’ Less thorough journalists might just have referred to it as just a ‘bicycle’, but no. So we have to conclude that whenever we see someone on a bicycle from now on, there goes another supporter of Chairman Mao. Thus, the Daily Express has changed history.”

So much for the mainstream media!

What about the social media – blogs, Twitter, Facebook and the like?

“Our new members want to be active and involved – want to have a say in our Labour Party’s policies; want to lead local and national campaigns against injustice and the dreadful impact of Tory austerity; want to work in their local communities to make people’s lives better,” said Mr Corbyn.

“They don’t want to do things the old way. Young people and older people are fizzing with ideas. Let’s give them the space for that fizz to explode into the joy we want of a better society. They want a new politics of engagement and involvement. Many of them are already active in their communities, in voluntary organisations, in local campaigns. And we’ve convinced them now to take a further step and join our Labour Party.

“What a tremendous opportunity for our Labour Party to be the hub of every community! The place where people come together to campaign; to debate, to build friendships, to set up new community projects; to explain and talk to their neighbours about politics, about changing Britain for the better.

“That’s going to mean a lot of change for the way we’ve done our politics in the past.

“Our new Deputy Leader, Tom Watson, is well up for that challenge. He’s leading the charge and leading the change of the much greater use of digital media as a key resource.

“That is the way of communication. It is not just through broadsheet newspapers or tabloids – it’s social media that really is the point of communication of the future. We have got to get that.”

This Writer couldn’t agree more.

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‘Criminalisation of protest’ must be fought – Gilmour

David Gilmour [Image: MJ Kim/Getty].

David Gilmour [Image: MJ Kim/Getty].

Vox Political applauds when celebrites have something real to say about politics. Here’s David Gilmour:

David Gilmour told BBC Radio 4 … the title track of his new album was “about suggesting that people might stand up and be counted against the criminalisation of protest in this country”.

“It is saying, ‘don’t allow this to become the norm’. I think this Government has stamped down on normal protest in a way that is heinous.

“The whole way of kettling people who have committed no crimes, imprisoning people who have committed the minorest of misdemeanours and using catch-all laws and charges to imprison people is a terrible thing and it’s becoming more widespread under this Government,” he said.

Source: Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour says ‘criminalisation of protest’ must be fought | UK Politics | News | The Independent

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21 broken promises by the Tories – one for every week they’ve been in government

To mark 21 weeks of all-Tory government, the party has revealed 21 broken Tory promises – from tax credit cuts to protecting the disabled.

David Cameron made a string of pledges in his May manifesto as he sold a Conservative message to the nation.

The nation bought it, returning Mr Cameron to Number 10 with a stronger majority and freed from Lib Dem shackles. But what did they buy? And have they been short-changed?

Here are the broken promises:

1. No child benefit cuts
2. No child tax credit changes
3. Support for working families]
4. Tax-free childcare this autumn
5. An electrified Midland Main Line
6. An electrified Transpennine route
7. A budget surplus by 2019
8. A greener government
9. Three days’ ‘volunteer leave’
10. Achieving NHS targets
11. A care cap by 2016
12. Cutting ‘productivity weakness’
13. No change to Sunday trading
14. Pledges on child poverty
15. Protecting the most vulnerable
16. Building more affordable homes
17. Transparent government
18. £1 trillion in exports
19. Public chance to buy Lloyds shares
20. Money for the Cancer Drugs Fund
21. No plans to privatise Channel 4.

Now visit Labour reveals 21 broken promises by the Tories – one for every week they’ve been in government – Mirror Online for the full details.

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Capita assessors STILL refusing to disclose qualifications | jaynelinney

This neatly follows a discussion in a Vox Political comment column today. The commenter was discussing the qualifications of the ‘health care professionals’ carrying out work capability assessment medical tests, and This Writer pointed out that many refuse to divulge their qualifications.

Some use the request as an excuse to close down the interview – although that is not suggested in Jayne’s article.

Despite the DWP informing Capita it is a “requirement” that PIP assessors must reveal qualifications, it transpires that in Leicester at least, this information has not been passed down.

Source: Capita assessors STILL refusing to disclose qualifications | jaynelinney

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Accusations face indignation over disability-related deaths

Dominic Raab: An overprivileged, lazy rich boy who wants to bully minorities including the sick and disabled.

Dominic Raab: An overprivileged, lazy rich boy who wants to bully minorities including the sick and disabled.

More Conservatives have voiced their indignation at comparisons between their attitude to the disabled and that of the Nazis in Germany during the 1930s and 40s – despite the fact that there are clear parallels.

The latest outburst was in response to claims by Sioux Blair-Jordan at the Labour Party conference, that if David Cameron enacts plans to scrap the Human Rights Act and replace it with a Bill of Rights, the disabled and sick “might as well walk into the gas chamber today”.

As explained in a Vox Political article yesterday, Ms Blair-Jordan’s criticism is accurate; clear comparisons can be made between the Conservative attitude to illness and disability and that of the Nazis.

Three examples are the adoption of ‘chequebook euthanasia’ in the work capability assessment ‘medical’ test, with people who have mental illnesses being asked if they have ever considered suicide – those who answer in the affirmative are then challenged over why they did not go through with it, provoking the claimant to consider suicide again; the fact that, after visiting the Auschwitz extermination camp, Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith adopted the slogan over its gate “Arbeit macht frei” (work makes you free) and has used it several times since, to sum up his attitude to claimants; and the fact that, despite many Freedom of Information requests for the number of people who have died under the Conservative Party’s current benefits regime, the Tories – like the Nazis – have hidden the full effects of their policies from the public.

In the light of these facts, the indignation professed by some Conservatives at Ms Blair-Jordan’s comment can only be regarded with contempt.

Look at Dominic Raab. This creep co-wrote a book entitled Britannia Unchained a few years ago, in which he claimed that British workers are “among the worst idlers in the world”, that the UK “rewards laziness” and “too many people in Britain prefer a lie-in to hard work”. At the time, his record of attendance at Parliament was among the worst of all MPs, at a meagre 79.1 per cent.

It seems Mr Raab is the one who prefers a lie-in to hard work – but he would clearly reopen the workhouse for the sick and disabled, given half a chance. It’s just one step from there to turn it into a concentration/extermination camp.

Yet he wants us to accept that “It is delusional, and shows extraordinarily bad taste, for Labour conference to applaud the delegate who equated the government’s common sense human rights reforms to Nazis sending innocent people to the gas chambers. Jeremy Corbyn should apologise immediately for embracing rather than distancing himself from the delegate. It points directly to his unfitness to lead.”

On the contrary – it is Mr Raab who is delusional. Let’s face it, he even describes his government’s fascistic plans to eliminate our human rights as “common sense”. It is hard to accept protestations that the Tories are not behaving like Nazis from someone who is upholding a policy demonstrating that they are.

Bizarrely, a spokesperson for the Campaign Against Antisemitism got on this bandwagon:

“Sioux Blair-Jordan’s reference to gas chambers was gratuitous and offensive. Over six million Jews as well as others, including the disabled, were murdered during the Holocaust, many of them in gas chambers.”

That is precisely the point. Perhaps this person should be joining Ms Blair-Jordan in opposing the Conservative Party’s behaviour, rather than siding with the oppressors. Perhaps this person should be reminded of the now-too-often-quoted words of Pastor Martin Niemoller, before the Tories come for him, and he finds out there is nobody to stand up for him.

Jeremy Corbyn is to be applauded. He is standing up for the sick, the disabled, and anyone else facing oppression from the overprivileged, spoilt brats who have conned their way into control of the UK.

Source: Disabled Labour Activist Launches ‘Gas Chamber’ Attack On David Cameron#f3f9928bb#f3f9928bb#f3f9928bb

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