Labour is so shifty it won’t commit to help anybody

Clueless: when Starmer was talking up Labour’s barely-scraped-together win in the Batley and Spen by-election, who knew that this gesture was his explanation of his policies – a shrug.

Isn’t it the job of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition Party to say what it would do if it was running the UK?

Here’s Labour’s Shadow Financial Secretary to the Treasury – also known as James Murray – taking nearly two minutes to avoid giving a straight answer to a straight question: whether Keir Starmer’s newly right-wing party would reinstate the £20/week Universal Credit uplift:

He said: “I’ve been really clear.. it’s really important to be clear about this.”

Then he said three times that Labour opposed the cut, but he wouldn’t say if the party would reinstate it. That’s shifty, not clear.

His problem is that Labour is now sympathetic to the miserly billionaires who store all their cash in offshore tax havens, and this means it has no tax option to fund the £6 billion/year that would be needed to make it viable.*

For the same reason, Labour can’t commit to a higher-than-inflation public sector pay rise after Tory Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced that he was ending the current pay freeze:


It makes Labour look like the Tories poorer little sister – unable to offer even a more imaginative alternative to big brother’s failed plans.

*We all know that the UK government can use the Bank of England to create as much money as it needs, but to be responsible it must prevent inflation via tax, right? Labour’s normal policy is to redistribute the nation’s funds (all money belongs to the government via the Bank of England, remember) by taxing the rich to pay for large-scale public services, but Keir Starmer wants to change that to a Conservative approach, and this means no cash for badly-needed social changes.


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9 thoughts on “Labour is so shifty it won’t commit to help anybody

  1. SteveH

    Surely the point is that Labour have pledged to replace UC with a better and fairer system Below are the policies that Jonathan Reynolds (Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary) committed Labour to at this years conference

    ▪️Scrap the five-week wait for Universal Credit.
    ▪️End the benefit cap.
    ▪️End the two-child limit.
    ▪️Replace Universal Credit “with a better system”, including a change to the taper rate so “people keep more of the money they earn” and assessments “focused on what people need to succeed rather than one that treats them with suspicion”.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      That’s not replacing UC – it’s just tinkering around the edges. Rishi Sunak has already announced that the taper rate is changing, so what will Keir Starmer do now?

      1. SteveH

        The rest of the policy announcements.
        Reynold’s speech came before Sunak’s half- arsed copy-cat contribution.
        I’m puzzled by your tinkering remark, what additional changes would you make to the benefits system that would constitute a new system in your mind.

      2. Mike Sivier Post author

        That would be the subject of an entirely new article – or series.

        Universal Credit is a mockery of a benefit system. You betray yourself by trying to defend it.

      3. trev

        Unemployment Benefits are so paltry and recipients so poor that it needs to be paid weekly not monthly, and from day one of the claim not 5 weeks later.

        The obligation to accept part-time/zero hours jobs needs to be abolished.

        The online journal needs to he scrapped because so many people don’t have internet access at home.

        Benefit Sanctions should be abolished because they do not help people into work, they just create greater poverty.

        The amount that people get needs to be increased to £400 per month exc. Housing Benefit, which should be paid separately by local Councils.

        Under 25s should get the same amount as everyone else.

        . All of the above are ways in which Universal Credit needs to be changed, no matter what you want to call the system (Social Security was always good enough in the past). I am one of the long-term unemployed still in receipt of ‘legacy’ JSA.

      4. SteveH

        `Mike – I don’t need to defend UC and/or its implementation, Labour have very clearly stated that they will Replace Universal Credit “with a better system”,………..
        …….. “focused on what people need to succeed rather than one that treats them with suspicion”.

        Whatever it ends up being called (I favour going back to calling it what it should be Social Security) there is obviously a need for a payments system to provide state support for the unemployed, low waged and disadvantaged.
        As intimated by Reynolds throughout his speech (link above) it is how that system is implemented that will make the difference, The biggest change that needs to take place in the DWP is a cultural one.

      5. Mike Sivier Post author

        Labour said it would replace UC – and THEN went back on that and said it would tinker with the current system instead. A certain amount of ambiguity has been left in the statements to allow apologists like you to get away with comments like this.

        It’s like Ed Miliband talking about re-nationalising the energy companies. Before the Labour conference he made it clear that Labour would re-nationalise them, then afterwards he said he meant “public ownership” and listed a series of ways that phrase could be applied, then said any firms taken back into “public ownership” would be re-privatised after public money has been used to make them fit for purpose again.

        We cannot trust a single damned word these might-as-well-be-Tories are saying. Frankly, I want my party back.

  2. disabledgrandad

    DUH, tell us something we don’t know. This fool thinks he can slime his way through well he will fail like all the other smarmy wideboys that relied on non-exestant personalty before.

    Maybe they should stop listening to the yes men and ask the public? Nah, silly idea!

    Que the sockpuppet popping up to defend his Boss…

  3. trev

    To be fair though, Labour have said they will “scrap” Universal Credit by altering some of the finer detail and renaming it something else. So that’s clear then.

Comments are closed.