It seems Keir Starmer’s Parliamentary Labour Party will leave no depth unplumbed in its relentless quest to alienate the whole UK electorate.
The latest travesty is the case of Shadow Tourism Minister Alex Sobel, who said in a podcast that, after being initially unwilling to talk with big businesses, he had swallowed his prejudices and started dialogues over climate change.
He went on to say that several of the companies he has met have “seen the way the wind is blowing” on climate, and “the private sector is ahead of the UK government”.
Then The Sun got hold of the story and twisted his words, claiming that he said businesspeople are “the enemy” now. This is the opposite of what he was saying; he actually stated that the private sector was advanced in its thinking and it is the government that is holding progress back.
And then Keir Starmer and his Labour leadership stepped in with their enormous jackboots and well and truly messed matters up.
It seems Starmer demanded an apology from Sobel. Then he went to the press and came out with this blood-curdling claptrap:
“Under my leadership, I’ve been very, very clear that the Labour party is pro-business,” Starmer said. “We’re more than pro-business, we want a partnership with business.”
He added: “Alex Sobel knows what he said was wrong. He has apologised. He’s apologised to me. The Labour party, under my leadership, is very clearly pro-business. We want a partnership with business. And Alex Sobel understands that.”
Labour says no pressure was put on Sobel, but This Writer can’t see any way he would have apologised otherwise; he had no reason to.
It is, however, very much “in character” for a Labour leadership that would apologise to its own shadow (if it ever stepped out of the shadows long enough to see one).
The obvious howler is the anti-Semitism “crisis” that Starmer spent months whipping up again after it had gone quiet.
Rather than stand up for his MPs, candidates and members who have been falsely accused, he persecuted them wholesale, while apologising to the world for them every having been allowed into the party.
Not a scrap of evidence ever seemed to be on display.
Sobel was referring to the past and making a point demonstrating how much he had changed his mind on business.
‘Leadership’ isn’t smiling at a camera, it’s having the back of everyone in your team. You don’t sense that with Starmer, he’d ditch anyone in shadow cabinet if had to. https://t.co/NTyjxJ5QVR
— Aaron Bastani (@AaronBastani) March 30, 2021
Contrast this with the way the Tories react when one of theirs is criticised… Priti Patel, for example.
Among her many transgressions is the way she shattered the Ministerial Code by bullying civil servants, not only at the Home Office but in the Departments for Work and Pensions and of International Development.
She should have been forced to resign. That is the rule. But Boris Johnson stuck by her and demanded that she had done nothing wrong and must keep her job.
So she did.
See the difference? Labour apologises and punishes its own at the slightest opportunity; the Tories stick together (until they start falling in the polls, of course, but that’s another story).
Smart minds in the Labour Party have spotted this and are making the only choice available to them.
So let us applaud James Osben, twice Labour’s general election candidate in Newton Abbot, who has not only resigned his membership but issued an open letter to Keir Starmer, explaining his reasons in no uncertain terms.
Here are some of the highlights:
“I am saddened, deeply disappointed and extremely troubled by the Labour Party’s current behaviour and actions in suspending hundreds of members from multiple CLPs.
“I stood as the Parliamentary Candidate in Newton Abbot in 2017 and 2019. Labour came second for the first time ever in this constituency in 2017… I and my friends and colleagues within the Party felt proud of what we achieved and we had hope, like never before, of achieving so much more for our local community.
“Any hope of this being achieved via the Labour party is now gone. You have suspended most of the Newton Abbot CLP officers and many have already resigned.
“Like my friends I will continue with community projects, supporting people who need help but I can no longer do this under the Labour banner when the Labour Party is failing to represent these people.
“I no longer feel that the Labour Party is representing me and the millions of people who need a government that is on their side.
“For the first time ever, I have felt uncomfortable, unsafe and unrepresented in the Labour Party. Why is this? My values have not changed nor have my principles. As Tony Benn once said, we should be signposts and not weathercocks. What has changed within the Labour Party?
“Why are members feeling unsafe, intimidated and fearful? Why does there appear to be a disturbing clampdown on democracy and free speech within the party?
“Thousands of members have resigned. You have suspended hundreds more. What is your aim? What is your purpose? What are your objectives?
“The Labour Party in Newton Abbot has now been severely crippled in the run-up to the May 2021 elections because of the actions of Keir Starmer and David Evans.
“Is it your aim to ensure a Labour Government isn’t elected in 2024? It certainly seems so.”
It’s a long letter and you can read it in full over on Skwawkbox.
This Writer can do nothing but endorse the sentiments Mr Osben expresses. They mirror many of my own feelings; long-term readers will know that I often refer to Tony Benn’s signposts and weathercocks comparison.
He also makes good points about the psychological harm being done to Labour Party members by Starmer’s totalitarian leadership.
Put this together with the treatment of Alex Sobel and we see a Labour Party that won’t even stand up for its own MPs and candidates.
And, in the run-up to the local elections in May, there is no reason to believe that Labour will stand up for any voters either.
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