McDonnell States Labour Will Take Back Rail, Water, Energy and Royal Mail | Beastrabban\’s weblog

John McDonnell, delivering his speech to the Labour conference.


A good video find – and great words to accompany it – from my brother, the Beast:

I’m giving this clip from RT’s coverage of the Labour party conference a massive thumbs-up. It’s a short clip of McDonnell stating that they intend to back rail, water, energy and the Royal Mail to give them to the people, who actually use and work in them. They aim to save the country and industry from the Tories’ mixture of belligerence and incompetence. And their commitment to a fairer society does not end at Dover. Just as they want a Britain for the many, and not the few, so they want a Europe for the many and not the few. This means, while respecting the results of the Brexit referendum, they will be working with our European partners during the transition period. And they will stop the Tories’ brutal treatment of immigrants.

Now we’re going to hear the screams and angry wailing from the neoliberals – the Tories, the Lib Dems and the Blairites. They’ll all start ranting now about how this is just discredited ‘Trotskyism’, that will wreck the wonderful, strong economy nearly four decades of Thatcherism has created. And, of course, the Tories, whose cabinet is stuffed with toffs and millionaires, will immediately start claiming that it will make working people poorer.

It’s none of these things. It’s good, solid, traditional Labour policy. The type of policies that gave this country decades of economic growth and higher standards for working people after the war. This was a Labour party that ensured that there was a real welfare state to look after the poor, that unions did represent the working man and woman against exploitation by their employer, and that an increasing number of young people could go on to uni without worrying about acquiring tens of thousands of pounds of debt at the end of it.

And if Labour does, as I fervently hope, renationalize those industries, I would very much like a form of workers’ control implemented in them. One reason why the Tories were able to privatize these industries was because, when Labour nationalized them after the Second World War, the party was too timid in the form nationalization took. The state took over the ownership of these industries, but otherwise left the existing management structures intact. This disappointed many trade unionists and socialists, who hoped that nationalization would mean that the people, who actually worked in these industries would also play a part in their management.

I’ve no doubt that if such plans were drawn up, all you’d hear from the Tories and the other parties would be yells about surrendering to the union barons, along with Thatcherite ravings about the Winter of Discontent and all the other trite bilge. But as May herself promised that she would put workers in the boardroom – a policy, which she had absolutely no intention of honouring – the Tories can’t complain without being hypocritical.


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4 thoughts on “McDonnell States Labour Will Take Back Rail, Water, Energy and Royal Mail | Beastrabban\’s weblog

  1. 61chrissterry

    I have lived with the nationalised industries and also of course what they are now in a privatised state.

    While there are of course many major problems with those in private hands, there were also major problems in their nationalised state. As they were used as a political tool by all the Governments since they were nationalised.

    But they were in a very poor shape before they were nationalised and then the correct course could have been to nationalise them so that they became under a total UK banner.

    If I take the railways, yes they were improved on being nationalisd, but as I was not born until 1949 I did not have first hand knowledge.

    Unfortunately the investments did not continue on a regular basis, well not near myself on the Midland line through Sheffield. When our rolling stock was replaced, invariably it was from cast offs from other lines, So our service was old stock, dirty both inside and out and they never ran on time. We now have the East Midlands line and when I have used them over the last ten years or so the rolling stock have been vastly improved and in many instances their timings have improved. Now I realise that this is not so all over the UK.

    I have seen nationalised industry in the UK and I do not wish to return to these industries being kept short of investment as was the case previously. Now it depends on the terms of the renationalisation and if continuous investment was guarranteed then this would be great and we would have the finest industries and be proud of them.

    But can this be guaranteed and you could say that this could and does not occur within the private industries and the profits are not reinvested, but paid to shareholders and directors who may not even be in the UK.

    To renationalise this has to be done to ensure they all move forward and not regress due to lack of investment and anyother areas that could cause regression.

    Not easy as in some respects you may need a crystal ball, but to hold renationalisation as the great to come may be wrong for if it is not done correctly the industries may not even stay the same but could get worse as politics can cause good, but also bad.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      Re-nationalisation would not entail a return to anything. The past is the past. If you don’t want nationalised industries starved of investment, then you don’t want a Conservative government. Tories give national assets to millionaires – for nothing – and starve the nation of the investment it needs.

  2. marcusdemowbray

    Great news. I knew from the start that Neo-Liberalism/Thatcherism/Reaganomics/Privatisation/Selling Off/Out-Sourcing was wrong, like the The Emperor’s New Clothing, many people were convinced all was well. There can be no doubt now that it has failed in every way, meeting NONE of its promises and massively damaging our economy and ability to control our infrastructure and national resources.

    I think Tories are also starting to realise it’s a failure but do not have the guts to admit it, or the strength of character to resist the bribes, back-handers and career opportunities they get from Big Business.

Comments are closed.