Tag Archives: centrist

Dawn Foster: mainstream journalist blacklisted by The Guardian dies aged just 34

Tributes are being made to Dawn Foster, the journalist who was fired from The Guardian for – rightly – identifying centrists as the cancer in Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party.

Ms Foster has died at the tragically young age of 34, after a long battle with illness.

But it is not her illness that comes across as the most upsetting part of this. Scan down the tributes below and you will see that friends of Ms Foster are incandescent with outrage over the fact that she was blacklisted by The Guardian for writing something we now know to be a clear and demonstrable truth:

That was written about the 2017 general election result, which Labour very nearly won – and, it is believe, would have won if not for centrist saboteurs. They had better luck in the 2019 election, after having carried out two more years of wrecking. Read the full article via the link below.

It should be pointed out that there were some in the Labour Party who rated Ms Foster.

For This Writer, though, the extraordinary thing about her was this perception of her work (with apologies for the strong language, which is not mine):

 

She wasn’t; many, many journalists – including This Writer – criticised Watson continually after his agenda became clear. That was in 2015, so we spent many years doing it.

But we were on the social media and she was in the mainstream. Her blacklisting demonstrates the high degree of censorship carried out by the UK’s media giants.

They really do tell you what to think – and, critically, what not to think.

I’ll close with perhaps the best tribute that I’ve seen, and I hope that everybody reading this will support the sentiments it conveys:

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Labour officers spent years stabbing Corbyn in the back, according to suppressed report

“Straight talking”? “Honest politics”? Prove it, Lord McNicol; prove it.

Labour lawyers have stepped in to stop a report on the party’s response to anti-Semitism accusations being submitted to the Equalities & Human Rights Commission – because it shows that right-wing party officers spent years backstabbing Jeremy Corbyn.

The report runs to 860 pages and concludes that factional hostility towards Mr Corbyn amongst former senior officials contributed to “a litany of mistakes” that hindered the effective handling of the issue.

It provides evidence that senior staff “openly worked against the aims and objectives of the leadership of the Party, and in the 2017 general election some key staff even appeared to work against the Party’s core objective of winning elections”.

In other words, by the time Jeremy Corbyn became leader, it seems the organisational structure beneath him was riddled with individuals who hated the Labour Party and were actively working to ensure it would not win a general election.

Reading between the lines, it seems this means they misled the elected leadership about the number and nature of anti-Semitism allegations, hid documents to make some claims appear more credible than they were, and deliberately obstructed investigations to falsely make Mr Corbyn’s leadership appear incompetent.

Of course, there’s no way to know whether that’s true, until the report is published. I look forward to seeing new leader Keir Starmer order it, although I fear I may be waiting for some time.

What we do know, from a Sky News report on the document, is that it says there was “abundant evidence of a hyper-factional atmosphere prevailing in Party HQ” towards Jeremy Corbyn which “affected the expeditious and resolute handling of disciplinary complaints”.

It seems the anti-Corbyn faction ensured a lack of “robust processes, systems, training, education and effective line management”.

The report doesn’t find any anti-Semitic intent behind the behaviour, or that anti-Semitism complaints were handled differently to any other – but this should not come as any surprise.

The anti-Corbynites’ intention was to create an impression that anti-Semitism was a huge problem in the party – not to engage in it themselves. That would have been counter-productive.

And why should anti-Semitism complaints be handled any differently when the intention was to portray Mr Corbyn as incompetent?

In this context, the report casts doubt on the validity of claims made by the BBC in last year’s Panorama documentary, Is Labour Antisemitic.

Some of the stars of that particular film – which took their claims as cast-iron fact – are also heavily featured in the report, including the former General Secretary, Lord McNicol, and the former acting head of the governance and legal unit, Sam Matthews.

Lord McNicol and other senior figures are accused of providing “false and misleading information”on the handling of anti-Semitism complaints to Mr Corbyn’s office, which the report claims meant “the scale of the problem was not appreciated” by the leadership.

Note that we are not told whether this means anti-Semitism was more or less prevalent than Mr Corbyn was led to believe.

According to Sky News, the report quotes:

  • Conversations in 2017 which appear to show senior staff preparing for Tom Watson to become interim leader in anticipation of Jeremy Corbyn losing the election

  • Conversations which it is claimed show senior staff hid information from the leader’s office about digital spending and contact details for MPs and candidates during the election

  • Conversations on election night in which the members of the group talk about the need to hide their disappointment that Mr. Corbyn had done better than expected and would be unlikely to resign

  • A discussion about whether the grassroots activist network Momentum could be ‘proscribed’ for being a ‘party within a party’

  • A discussion about ‘unsuspending’ a former Labour MP who was critical of Jeremy Corbyn so they could stand as a candidate in the 2017 election

  • A discussion about how to prevent corbyn-ally Rebecca Long-Bailey gaining a seat on the party’s governing body in 2017

  • Regular references to corbyn-supporting party staff as “trots”

  • Conversations between senior staff in Lord McNicol’s office in which they refer to former director of communications Seamus Milnes as “dracula”, and saying he was “spiteful and evil and we should make sure he is never allowed in our Party if it’s last thing we do”

  • Conversations in which the same group refers to Mr. Corbyn’s former chief of staff Karie Murphy as “medusa”, a “crazy woman” and a “bitch face cow” that would “make a good dartboard”

  • A discussion in which one of the group members expresses their “hope” that a young pro-Corbyn Labour activist, who they acknowledge had mental health problems, “dies in a fire”

The report was drafted as a submission by the Labour Party to the EHRC’s ongoing investigation into “institutional anti-Semitism” in the Labour Party, and contains passages that refer to that organisation or address it directly. It therefore seems strange in the extreme that the party is now refusing to submit it, and claiming that it is out of the scope of the EHRC’s inquiries. Here’s Sky’s Tom Rayner:

The quoted extract says, “We hope the EHRC will focus on the documentary, primary-source evidence that the Party has made available to it… rather than the personal accounts of staff or former staff.” How is the EHRC supposed to do that if Labour won’t hand over the report?

Mr Rayner went on to say that a Labour source who worked in Mr Corbyn’s office said the report showed the leadership had been “sabotaged and set up left right and centre by McNicol’s team”.

Now read the quotes he had from McNicol himself, and from Matthews:

From McNicol we get whataboutery: party officers have been “trawling 10,000 emails rather than challenging anti-Semitism”. Of course, it would not have been necessary if he had done his job properly, right? And, really, an issue affecting only 0.06 per cent of party members (some of whom have been falsely accused, like This Writer) doesn’t merit the attention of every single person working for Labour.

Matthews simply attempts to divert blame. But here’s the thing: the report asks for the primary evidence – the documents – to be considered, rather than the comments on those documents by interested parties. The data doesn’t lie.

https://twitter.com/UmaarKazmi/status/1249283358305198080

The report’s non-publication has scandalised those of us with a stake in the issue – and should upset anybody else with an interest in justice. Many in the media leapt on the fabrication and treated it as real, without any reason to do so.

For example: remember Phillip Schofield demanding an apology for the anti-Semitism crisis in Labour, on live TV during the general election campaign? Now we see evidence that it was cooked up by backstabbers, will Mr Schofield be issuing an apology for sabotaging Labour’s election campaign?

Twitter has been alive with outrage:

There is already a mechanism by which anybody who is concerned about this issue can demand that the report be published for all to read, including the EHRC. Here it is:

Please visit the site and sign the petition. I have!

Source: Report in to antisemitism in Labour Party concludes that Jeremy Corbyn and senior leadership were stitched up – Dorset Eye

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MPs from both sides of the Commons in talks about new party. Jumping before they’re pushed?

Chuka Umunna and Anna Soubry: Party on?

Don’t let the headline get your hopes up. Chuka Umunna was supposed to be quitting Labour last Thursday and didn’t have the guts.

Michael Rosen mocked him brilliantly on Twitter:

Still, Mr Umunna may well be thinking about announcing that it’s possible he could consider something along those lines again at some point in the future.

Also involved in discussions about forming a new party, we’re told, is Chris Leslie – who has been castigated in a letter by representatives of his Nottingham East Constituency Labour Party.

“We believe that the views expressed in your most recent email to constituents are likely to damage the reputation and electoral prospects of our party and give the impression that you are doubtful that a Labour government would be the best outcome for Britain,” they wrote. “This email crossed a line and we believe it is unacceptable for a sitting Labour MP to attack the party in this manner.”

The letter also stated: “You are happy to attack the party leadership, other Labour MPs and party members; giving the impression that our party is divided as we approach the local council elections in May and a possible general election.

“The support you give constituents and party members in Nottingham East is well below that of other local Labour MPs… Members and residents are much more likely to have seen you attacking the party and its leadership than representing the views of local residents.”

Draw your own conclusions. While the MPs already mentioned, together with Gavin Shuker who lost a vote of “no confidence” in his own CLP last year, and Angela Smith might say they are frustrated with pro-Brexit policies and issues over anti-Semitism, their real reasons for wanting to take their allegiances elsewhere seem clear.

So the right-wing newspapers are full of rumours that these people will help set up a new “centrist” (read: neoliberal) party alongside Conservatives (possibly Anna Soubry) and Liberal Democrats who may be desperate for public interest after their five-year dalliance with the Tories.

Intense discussions are taking place at Westminster that could lead to the emergence of a new centrist party consisting of six or more disaffected anti-Brexit Labour MPs along with the involvement of some Conservatives and the backing of the Liberal Democrats.

Apparently some of the ringleaders have lobbied backbench colleagues they thought were sympathetic, with an invitation to join in. It seems Clive Lewis was among them – and here’s his response:

The message – to the Labour MPs implicated, at least, is clear: If you want to go, push off.

Sadly it seems this is the very attitude that is keeping them where they aren’t wanted.

Here’s the reason ‘centrist’ commentators are pretending to be upset about Labour’s Brexit policy

It seems the year in politics is to end with the same kind of story we’ve seen all through – manufactured outrage at a false claim about Jeremy Corbyn.

It has been Labour’s policy to respect the result of the European Union membership referendum ever since the votes were counted in 2016.

Labour set six tests for any decoupling deal with the EU, and it is in accordance with party policy that its MPs must vote against Mrs May’s deal; it does not pass those tests.

If the deal is voted down, Labour would then seek a general election on the basis that the vote showed Parliament has no confidence in the Conservative government – and with the aim of negotiating a new Brexit deal on a different timetable.

That does not mean Mr Corbyn’s Labour would not support a second referendum, or that it would support leaving the EU if one happened. If Labour fails to secure a general election, all options remain on the table – and if Labour wins a general election but fails to secure a deal that meets its six tests, again, all options remain on the table. It will be for the party’s membership to decide national policy.

Yet this was the headline in The Guardian on December 22:

The comment by Ealing Labour for Jeremy Corbyn is accurate with regard to the same newspaper’s earlier article.

So, in addition to my comments above, let’s remind ourselves of a few more facts about Labour’s policy on Brexit:

https://twitter.com/James4Labour/status/1076425195391455232

This is worth remembering, also:

But look at the reactions, and the people who are reacting. Here’s a centrist Labour MP:

An anti-Corbyn journalist and author:

Hugo Rifkind:

Professor Brian Cox:

And others. We’ll get to them after we consider the criticisms the story has attracted:

https://twitter.com/ToryFibs/status/1076496115263045632

As the wave of manufactured outrage rose, other news outlets joined in the attack on Mr Corbyn:

https://twitter.com/ToryFibs/status/1076499516642217984

The similarity between these stories was pronounced – down to the use of the same photograph and the fact that only a superficial effort was made to change the wording of the headline – that some have suggested that there has been a co-ordinated effort to discredit the Labour leader:

<em>Sky News</em> also got in on the act:

https://twitter.com/Wirral_In_It/status/1076400391015804929

So the ‘centrists’ (if that’s what you want to call them) who attacked Mr Corbyn have found themselves attacked in turn – but commentators keen to promote the facts, rather than their nasty fiction.

So Guardian hack John Harris had the following welcome for his comments:

Former Liberal Democrat press officer turned SNP supporter James Melville came in for particularly strong criticism (and the reason is clear – he was claiming to have supported Mr Corbyn when this is highly questionable):

https://twitter.com/Wirral_In_It/status/1076455046869594112

Carole Cadwalladr should have known better (we’ll discuss the validity of her criticism later, though):

Author (and Mastermind winner) Emma Kennedy earned this withering put-down by Tom Clark, author of Another Angry Voice:

And this from Owain Gardner:

Anti-Brexit campaigner Mike Galsworthy won himself this response:

But Harry Potter author JK Rowling deserves an article of her own for making this story about her. She reckoned the people who took issue with her for attacking Mr Corbyn were unreasoning supporters of the Labour leader, when in fact they were simply pointing out the facts about Labour Party policy. Her attempt at a Biblical writing style, to match her claim that Mr Corbyn’s supporters had turned him into a religious figure, attracted considerable scorn…

https://twitter.com/SeemaChandwani/status/1076501195546607616

… but she still managed to attract an article of her own:

https://twitter.com/JackDunc1/status/1076536988235370497

You’ll have to look up that one for yourself!

The message is clear: Mr Corbyn was reiterating a Labour policy that has been known for years and his critics – both writing the news articles and commenting on them – were trying to pretend it was a change of direction dictated by the Labour leader. The scorn they have received is, therefore, justified:

That being said, let’s return to Carole Cadwalladr’s concern about the legality of the EU referendum. She has a point – as do the following two commentators:

They are right. The EU referendum was a stitch-up and, to be honest, once even suspicions about this became evident, the whole process of leaving the EU should have been suspended, pending a full criminal investigation and a decision on whether the result is legitimate or not.

As this has not happened, I can only conclude that someone has a vested interest in ensuring that Brexit goes ahead before any decision is made. Someone in the Conservative government, that is. Labour has no power in this matter.

That is the real story.

But it will go unreported in the mainstream media, as long as the public can be persuaded to oppose Mr Corbyn on the basis of a flimsy lie.

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Will Theresa May be saved – again – by so-called Labour ‘centrists’? If so, when we they be expelled from the party?

Jeremy Corbyn: He has been far too tolerant of the backstabbers on his back benches.

Theresa May’s Brexit deal is in serious trouble. She doesn’t have enough support in her own party – and her buddies-due-to-bribery, the DUP, won’t help because of her proposals for Northern Ireland – to get it past Parliament.

And it will be seen as a vote of confidence in her government. If she loses, the Tory government could fall.

But she does have a glimmer of hope. The so-called Labour “centrists” may roll through the “Aye” lobby to save her.

Let’s just have a think about that. Here’s Tom London to concentrate our minds:

That’s not just cynicism; it’s hypocrisy and – above all – treachery.

The Labour Party line on this crucial matter is that the proposed deal does not meet its six tests, so Labour MPs must oppose it.

So, what will happen?

I hope everybody can see the contradictions here. Labour “centrists” (they really belong to the far right of the party and would be far more at home in the Liberal Democrats if they can’t bear to join the Conservatives; the only reason they are in Labour is they think the party’s name carries a higher chance of them being elected into office and onto a government gravy train) have accused Jeremy Corbyn of facilitating Theresa May’s Brexit but seem set to launch it themselves – and are then likely to blame Mr Corbyn for their actions.

What do you think the party should do with these betrayers – if they go through with the plan as laid out above?

I agree with Bevan Boy:

Evolve Politics seems to think it’s all on, too:

But I have a doubt.

Labour’s internal procedures are a corrupt mess.

The party recently expelled me on a charge of anti-Semitism, having proved that one or two people had complained about content I posted on this website which they said may be regarded as abusive and offensive for reasons of their own which were not explored. As you can see, that is not proof of the charge. It is proof that somebody said something nasty about me.

Given that a valuable member of the Labour Party can be expelled for no valid reason, it seems logical to believe that members who actively work to harm the same organisation will find a way to remain in positions of power.

So the question arises: What can we do to stop it?

It seems clear that, as this is such a crucial matter, Labour MPs will be issued with a three-line whip – an order to vote against the Tory government. Those defying the whip need to be warned that, as this has the potential to bring down a Tory government and replace it with a Labour administration, any support for Theresa May should be considered an act of treachery against the party (and indeed the United Kingdom as a whole).

It is not enough to threaten MPs who express such support with temporary removal of the party whip, nor will the possibility of deselection be enough to deter them.

It should be considered to be unacceptable conduct for a Labour MP and anyone carrying out such an act should be expelled from the party.

Perhaps the possibility that they will be thrown off the Westminster gravy train will keep these traitors on the right track.

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Labour’s ‘institutional’ problem isn’t racism – it’s right-wing, authoritarian MPs

This is deliberate needling by Chuka Umunna. He’s trying to provoke an aggressive reaction from among the membership of the Labour Party – as he was with his dehumanising tactic of calling us all “dogs”.

Well, every dog has its day, and ours is coming.

Here’s Mr Umunna’s latest outrageous claim:

Notice that Sophy Ridge asked a leading question, allowing Mr Umunna to wax lyrical on this theme. He immediately goes off-course and crashes. He claims that the Labour Party has met the Macpherson report’s definition of “institutional racism” – but fails to elaborate on what it is.

Allow me to fill in the blanks. According to the report by Sir William Macpherson to the Stephen Lawrence inquiry, “institutional racism” is “the collective failure of an organisation to provide an appropriate and professional service to people because of their colour, culture or ethnic origin”. And it does not apply to the Labour Party at all.

Labour, as an organisation, has always provided an appropriate and professional service. Where party members have been found to have been exhibiting racist behaviour, it has not been in their capacity as members or officers of the party – it did not reflect Labour’s policies or procedures. And we know that the vast majority of accusations that have been levelled at Labour members have been false. Right?

Mr Umunna, a supporter of Labour Friends of Israel – an organisation that has now been proven to have been supporting the interests of the Israeli government in UK Parliamentary affairs (right?) – went on to say that Labour had failed to address “the racism known as anti-Semitism”. But Labour has been addressing it since 2016; it is the intervention of MPs like Mr Umunna (whose questioning of Ken Livingstone over anti-Semitism that year clearly showed he had already decided on the senior Labour member’s guilt) that induces the public wrongly to believe otherwise.

He demands that Labour should have adopted the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism, rather than its own code of conduct, failing to mention the fact that the IHRA document is vague, allows critics of the Israeli government to be falsely labelled anti-Semitic (because he’s involved with Labour Friends of Israel?), and was intended to be a tool to help investigations – not as evidence, or indeed proof, of claims against any party member his gang would like to accuse.

The dishonesty in his next comment is staggering. He claims that, if Labour had adopted the IHRA working definition, the party could have moved on to discuss the big political issues of the moment. This is not true. He knows – and we know (right?) that the accusations of anti-Semitism will not stop while Jeremy Corbyn is leader of the Labour Party. The Israeli government does not want a supporter of peace between its country and Palestine in line to be the next Prime Minister of a country as influential as the UK still remains, and that is why these claims continue. One was made the very morning after Labour adopted the IHRA definition, if I recall correctly.

His claim that there are still outstanding complaints is false, as you can see from this tweet by NEC member Claudia Webbe:

That being said, This Writer has been facing action under Labour’s disputes procedure since May 2017 and at the time of writing I am yet to be given details of the date and location of the first hearing at which I will be allowed to give evidence, which indicates that the process up to now has indeed left much to be desired – especially as I am utterly innocent of the charge against me, including all its particulars.

I am currently crowdfunding to carry out legal action against all my accusers and you should be able to find information on how you can help me, at the end of this article.

I cannot discuss the claim that Labour has not told MPs about threats of violence to them. I do know of a claim that a supporter of Joan Ryan MP threatened to kill a youth member who intervened when he tried to pressure a female vote-counter and then tried to assault the same young man on a second occasion. The Metropolitan Police has said it was ‘assessing’ the complaint.

Labour organisations, MPs and officers have made their opposition to Mr Umunna’s claims clear:

The mention of Trevor Phillips refers to a former chair of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission who has claimed that Labour “is led by anti-Semites and racists, who basically want to essentially eliminate anyone who disagrees with them” – in a staggering reversal of the facts. It is right-wingers like Mr Umunna (and, one must conclude, Mr Phillips) who want to eliminate anyone who disagrees with them. I make no comment about whether they are racist in any way.

This is true. Many have questioned why Labour right-wingers seem able to come out with any old claptrap and go unpunished for it, while rank-and-file members such as myself can be suspended – and indeed expelled, as happened to Marc Wadsworth – on the basis of similar claptrap, sometimes uttered by other Labour MPs (Ruth Smeeth in the case of Mr Wadsworth).

So, what can we say about this? Let’s start with Clive Lewis’s excellent comments to BBC News:

He makes a strong point: Labour members have exercised their democratic right to express their dissatisfaction with the behaviour of the right-wing MPs (like Joan Ryan, in the case under discussion) and to demand better.

The current Labour leadership understands that this is democracy – but the MPs under the spotlight – including Mr Umunna – don’t. The reason for this is explored very thoroughly in a Twitter thread by Ben Goren:

So these people – Mr Umunna, Ms Ryan, Mr Phillips, Ms Smeeth, and the others not mentioned above – believe that Labour should be ruled from the centre, with the wider membership only allowed to service the needs of the privileged few in the PLP, NEC and other positions of power. That is why they believe Jeremy Corbyn can “call off the dogs”, as Mr Umunna unappealingly (indeed, unacceptably) described it.

But Mr Corbyn cannot. He did not set these “dogs” loose. And the right-wingers only have themselves to blame for their current predicament.

Indeed, their accusations may be considered victim-blaming of the lowest kind. Consider:

What next? Well…

Yes it does. But we cannot descend to their level because we know that they have an advantage – a set of privileges – that the rest of us do not: They can say what they want with impunity but if we put one word out of line, they’ll use it as a stick and beat us with it. Like dogs.

https://twitter.com/ToryFibs/status/1038445403841220608

This is a debate that requires the ultimate in restraint from those of us who are in the right. We must be polite. We must be accurate. We must be forensic.

And when the other side changes its tactics, we must adapt. For instance:

Back in 2016, during the so-called “Chicken Coup” that led to the second leadership election that Jeremy Corbyn won, Ms Eagle accused supporters of the Labour leader of vandalising the window of her constituency office. This was a lie. The broken window led to a staircase and not the office, and a police investigation showed no evidence that supporters of Mr Corbyn were responsible.

Now she is adopting a conciliatory tone. But note that she is trying to take the lead. We can unite to take on the Tories – if we follow her lead and that of her group within the Labour Party.

No, thank you, Angela. You had your chance and you attacked us.

If you hear someone attacking Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour leadership, using accusations of anti-Semitism against him and the membership at large, or claiming that the members are somehow traitors for using the party’s own mechanisms to stop them… these are the people to oppose.

Politely.

But firmly.

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Labour usurper Tony Blair gets schooled on what the party REALLY stands for

Tight-lipped: Tony Blair probably wishes he’d been like this during his Nick Robinson interview.

If he had any sense, Tony Blair would be wishing he had kept his mouth shut.

The right-wing former Labour leader took part in a radio interview with former Young Conservatives chairman Nick Robinson in which he moaned about the current direction of Labour.

His question: “Can it be taken back?” is nonsense.

The fact is, the Labour Party has been retaken after Blair turned it away from its socialist background and forced its members to put up with an elitist, centrally-led hierarchy in which our wishes were steamrolled and leader-approved yes-people were parachuted into safe seats, to provide a cushy livelihood for the favourites, no matter what the rest of us may have been suffering.

The backlash was immediate, and severe:

Current Labour backbencher Chris Williamson told the BBC about the current Labour Party in no uncertain terms:

Reporter Paul Mason took a stronger line:

And Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn had this to say:

Others, including high-profile figures, were far less compromising:

The fact is that Blair’s politics was regressive, not progressive.

I’m giving the last word to Evolve Politics, who provided the following perceptive analysis of Mr Blair’s mistake:

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Labour centrists face their own racism row today, and they have no one to blame but themselves | The Canary

Oh dear. How sad (for the Labour so-called ‘Centrists’. In fact, they’re right-wingers).

They actively colluded with the Conservatives to support the Immigration Act of 2014 that enabled the racist “hostile environment” policy that resulted in the Windrush scandal.

Remember, the Tories have done nothing to ease the severity of this policy; it is still victimising people now.

But Labour ‘Centrists’ think it is far more worthwhile to ignore their role and that atrocity and to lie about their party leader.

For over two years, Labour centrists have promoted antisemitism smears against the left with scant regard for the opinions of left-wing Jews. But now, they are engulfed in their own racism row, as it’s emerged they all backed Theresa May’s 2014 Immigration Act. This act enabled the “regime of harassment” being suffered by the Windrush generation today, just as the left warned at the time.

Source: Labour centrists face their own racism row today, and they have no one to blame but themselves | The Canary

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Labour’s far-right fringers are plotting again. Time to boot them out

A gathering of nobodies: Stephen Kinnock, Chuka Umunna and Liz Kendall.

What a pathetic shower.

These right-wingers – not centrists – tried a coup once before and it didn’t work. But they are opportunists so they will try again.

And when that doesn’t work, they are planning to prevent Labour from forming a government by quitting the party and forming a new one of their own.

I cannot think of a better reason for the Labour leadership to withdraw the whip.

No wonder Unite the Union is said to be planning to support a motion for mandatory reselection of MPs at this year’s Labour conference.

We’ve had enough of this treachery.

A seat in Parliament should not be an automatic right of the incumbent – it should belong to the person chosen by the people, especially if the person currently occupying it is planning to betray those who put them there.

The sooner these nobodies are gone, the better.

As Labour‘s divide over anti-Semitism continues to grow, a number of anti-Corbyn MPs have been meeting to discuss how to “take back control” of the party, it was reported.

Around 12 MPs were said to have met in a Sussex farmhouse to discuss policy and prepare to “step in” after the leadership’s “collapse”, sources said.

The group is said to include Chuka Umunna, Liz Kendall, Stephen Kinnock and John Woodcock, among others.

Many Labour MPs have clashed with the leadership on the party’s policy towards Brexit, with centrists preferring to fight against it or advocate a second vote.

One attendee said pro-Remain Tories and Lib Dems had expressed interest in a new centrist party. Vince Cable, the Lib Dem leader, was previously found to be attending a meeting about such a new group during a vote on a crucial Brexit amendment.

Source: Labour centrists meet to ‘take back control’ of Labour from Corbyn

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Corbyn’s Scottish trip shows he means it when he says he’ll win back support

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“Gotta feel sorry for Corbyn. “Don’t mention Scotland! Drink this! Just Drink. The. Irn. Bru. Try to look happy.”

That’s SNP councillor Mhairi Hunter’s opinion of Jeremy Corbyn’s trip north of the English border – but it’s one that doesn’t seem to reflect the actual state of affairs at all.

Sure, we have the photographs of Labour’s new leader brandishing a bottle of Irn Bru and claims like that in The National, that Scottish Labour has told him not to mention the word ‘Scotland’ for fear of “playing to the nationalist agenda” (it seems he was advised by senior party insiders to refer to towns and cities rather than the country).

Others have been taking the visit more seriously. According to the FT, “Some Labour members think that his left wing views will make it harder for the ruling Scottish National party to portray itself as a champion of socialist values while pursuing centrist policies” (Scottish Labour’s opinion seems to be that the SNP are “New Labour in kilts”).

This, of course, suggests that moving Labour to the left of the political spectrum leaves more of the middle ground for the SNP. Won’t that imply a visible shift in that party’s policies, away from what the electorate thought it was, though?

Mr Corbyn himself seems to endorse that view. Asked how Labour’s anti-austerity stance differs from the SNP’s, he told the Daily Record: “We mean it.”

“We’ve learned the lessons of the economic strategies of the past and the way they haven’t worked. It does mean rebalancing our economy, it does mean maintaining the 50p top rate of tax, it does mean not cutting tax credits for the poorest people in our society.

“We want to invest in a growing, expanding economy across the UK and we fully support the powers in the Scotland Bill, and we are going to be working closely with the Labour Party in Scotland to try to defend the people of Scotland from the worst effects of the Trade Union Bill and, of course, the Welfare Reform Bill.”

Mr Corbyn warned that the SNP plan for “full fiscal autonomy” would lead to “very, very heavy” austerity – implying that the nationalists have been misleading their electorate about the effects of their policies.

He told the Record: “If you go for fiscal autonomy, I don’t know what kind of austerity you are going to have but all I know is it would be very, very heavy. I want to see an end to austerity across all of the UK and that is what the Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell did in his speech at the party conference on Monday.”

He made it clear that he rejects SNP claims that they are the only effective opposition to the Tories, and pointed out that Labour membership in Scotland it at its highest in years since he took over as leader.

“I believe we’re going to continue to gain support,” he said. “We’re going to do lot of campaigning and point out that what really matters to people is housing, is education, jobs, opportunities and opposing what the Tories are doing in the Welfare Reform Bill.

“We will do our best to get sufficient powers to the Scottish Parliament to try to reduce the impact of the disastrous welfare reform bill on the people of Scotland.”

And he repeated his position on Trident, saying his belief that it should be scrapped had been well known for years and would win popular support in Scotland.

Hmm. That’s six mentions of ‘Scotland’, just in the comments quoted here. Perhaps Ms Hunter and The National were mistaken?

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