Tag Archives: defeat

Grossly distorted report by Starmer supporters predictably blames Corbyn for Labour election defeat

The villain of the piece: Keir Starmer set Labour up to fail with a weak Brexit policy – and a new report has blamed that policy on Jeremy Corbyn. How hypocritical.

Why are the media making such a fuss about a right-wing report that blames Labour’s defeat in the last general election on the party’s then – lefty – leader?

It makes the blood boil to read the distortions in this so-called report, put together by a cabal of Starmer-supporting right-wingers with an anti-Corbyn chip on their collective shoulder who have the cheek to brand themselves “Labour Together”!

Labour backstabbers, more like!

It should be no surprise that all the major members of Labour Together now have prominent roles in the shadow cabinet of Keir Starmer: Ed Miliband, Steve Reed, Lisa Nandy and Jim McMahon. Other right-whingers writing the review included Lucy Powell.

The report claims that the biggest issue in the election was Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, which had fallen in popularity. It does not correctly describe the reasons for that fall in popularity.

So for example, the report – falsely, in This Writer’s opinion – claims that the departure of backstabbers including Luciana Berger and Chuka Umunna to form the unpopular and ill-fated Independent Group/Change UK/whatever-they-ended-up-calling-themselves led to a collapse in Corbyn’s approval ratings.

It does not state that this could have been because those now-former Labour MPs immediately went on media junkets trashing his leadership and spreading falsehoods about anti-Semitism.

In fact, after his success in the 2017 election, it is widely accepted that Jeremy Corbyn suffered the longest-running and most unfair hate campaign, possibly of any political leader in UK history – with a complicit media lapping up every lie.

Labour “went into the 2019 election without a clear strategy of which voters we needed to persuade or how”, and failed to settle on a coherent message with the power of 2017’s “For the many, not the few”, the report says.

It states: “It was unclear who was in charge” of the election campaign, and relationships were soured by years of infighting which had created a “toxic culture” and “significant strategic and operational dysfunction”.

And it says: Labour was outgunned by the Tories in the digital war, with messages poorly coordinated and most of them failing to reach beyond the party’s base.

All of these three issues can be related to a single cause: treachery against the party leader. We know this because it was very clearly highlighted in the leaked report on the way the party handled anti-Semitism allegations under Corbyn.

Party officers worked hard to present Corbyn as an anti-Semite, to undermine his leadership and to ensure that Labour could not win a general election with him as leader, that report stated.

Mr Starmer has launched an investigation into that leaked report, apparently with the intention of clearing those accused of treachery (and in many cases racism) and tarring the whistleblowers.

One criticism that rings true is the fact that the Conservatives’ “Get Brexit Done” message was more popular with voters than Labour’s offer of a new referendum on membership of the EU. But the report seems to forget that this particular policy was the brainchild of the current Labour leader, Keir Starmer. I wonder why?

Here’s a more accurate analysis of that part of Labour’s defeat:

Nobody with an ounce of knowledge about politics in the last five years has been fooled by this self-serving pack of distortions from Starmer’s new New Labour elite. See the responses for yourself:

https://twitter.com/JCisAntisemitic/status/1273957714583044096

This Writer was even tempted to respond to some of the usual suspects who have trumpeted this travesty as though it were the Word of God:

But media Toryism of the last 10 years has created a generation of ignorance, with most of the public happy to be spoonfed lies rather than think for themselves about the Age of Hypocrisy into which they have voted themselves.

The hypocrisy is strong in this report. How sad that the same people who lapped up the “Corbyn is a racist/Corbyn is a traitor/Corbyn is the devil” bull will be happy to do the same with this.

Source: Labour: dysfunctional ‘toxic culture’ led to defeat, major report finds | Politics | The Guardian

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Lords send Johnson down to a fourth defeat over his Brexit bill

Lords: They’ve just shown up Boris Johnson for a fourth time.

The House of Lords has delivered yet another amendment to Boris Johnson’s Brexit bill.

They insisted that measures be introduced to allow unaccompanied child refugees to be reunited with their parents – in the UK.

Boris Johnson has claimed he’ll reverse all the Lords’ amendments – because he’s a blind, bigoted fool.

But charities including the British Red Cross and Safe Passage have urged him not to strike out this provision.

It will be interesting to see what he does.

This Site said yesterday that someone should monitor times when Peers defeat Johnson’s government, to demonstrate how wrong-headed his ideas are.

Well, this is a great example of such a thing.

And if he really does reverse it, we’ll have even more evidence to throw against him.

Source: Brexit: Boris Johnson suffers new Lords defeat over bid to scrap protections for child refugees | The Independent

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Lords defeat the government in three votes on Brexit

The House of Lords: Peers can’t stop the Tories from wreaking injustices on the nation – but they can highlight them.

The Tories have lost three votes on their Brexit plans – in the House of Lords.

Peers passed an amendment giving EU citizens in the UK the automatic right to stay, rather than having to apply to the Home Office, and to ensure they can get physical proof of their rights.

They voted to remove ministers’ power to pick and choose which EU Court of Justice rulings should be honoured by UK courts and tribunals.

And they removed proposals for the courts to ignore EU case law after Brexit.

It means nothing in the short term – the Tories will simply reverse the moves when the legislation returns to the Commons.

But it highlights injustices that the Tories wished to enshrine in UK law.

Let’s hope someone is keeping a record of them.

And that enough democracy is left to hold the Tories to account, at some point in the future.

Source: Brexit: Government loses first parliamentary votes since election – BBC News

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Bad day for the Brexit deal as Theresa May loses another vote

Theresa May: This is the only “facepalm” shot of her that I have, so I’ll keep using it wherever I think it is appropriate.

If the first of the five Brexit deal debates is any yardstick, the Tories are screwed seven ways from Saturday.

Not only did they become the first British government ever to be found guilty of contempt of Parliament, but they lost the right to dictate the Brexit process in a major rebellion by Tory MPs.

Previously, if MPs voted down Mrs May’s deal, the government would have 21 days to return to the Commons, and declare what it planned to do next. MPs would be confined to taking note of the new plan.

Now – by a vote of 321 to 299 against – if MPs vote down the deal, the government would still have 21 days to set out a new plan, but MPs would be able to vote on that, too.

It shifts the balance of power back where it belongs – with Parliament having superiority over the government.

This fact was proved in the “contempt of Parliament” debate; the government was right to lose because it had tried to overrule the will of Parliament and Parliament is sovereign.

In practical terms, this means Mrs May’s deal is even more certain to land at the bottom of the circular file, leaving MPs clear to push for a “Plan B” alternative that will also end the likelihood of a “no-deal” Brexit.

And that’s only the result of day one.

Who knows what the rest of the week will bring?

It seems those who claimed Mrs May might withdraw her entire plan before the weekend may prove correct after all.

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Tory MP endorses violence to defeat enemies. He means HIS enemies, not ours

Oppressor: It seems Johnny Mercer wants young people to join our armed forces so a Tory government can order them to brutalise others in the name of far-right-wing political dogma.

What kind of twisted mind does Plymouth’s Tory MP, Johnny Mercer possess?

He has started a huge debate with a claim that there is nothing wrong with killing to defeat the enemies of a nation.

Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to him that, to many of us, he is an enemy of the United Kingdom.

By his own reckoning, would I not be well within my rights to gather a few dozen like-minded people, track him down and beat him brutally with baseball bats wrapped in barbed wire (for example)?

No, of course I wouldn’t. He doesn’t mean it like that.

We’re told he made his comment in a tweet encouraging young people to join the army. It stated: “The application of violence to defeat the enemies of the nation has become worryingly unpopular. Nothing wrong with fighting (yes killing) for values/what you believe in. The oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve it. Join the fight; best thing you’ll ever do.”

So he wasn’t discussing “the application of violence” for “values you believe in”. He meant he wants young people to enlist in order to apply violence in the name of values he believes in.

And what about the line that “the oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve it”? If you think he means they deserve protection, think again!

Mr Mercer means the oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve to be oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless.

If you don’t believe me, just look at Conservative policies regarding sick and disabled benefit claimants since 2010.

It’s a philosophy you can see espoused in the movie (and, I suppose, novel) Starship Troopers. Author Robert A Heinlein had imagined a future civilisation in which far-right politics had conquered the world and in one scene, a character states that violence is “the supreme authority from which all other authority is derived… Naked force has resolved more issues throughout history than any other factor. The contrary opinion, that violence never solves anything, is wishful thinking at its worst. People who forget that always pay.”

This is what Johnny Mercer believes – but notice that he doesn’t want to put himself at risk in the application of that “naked force”. He wants the plebs to do that for him.

Note that he served in the Army as an officer, not in the ranks.

Officers are the people who decide how troops should be deployed, and send them out – often to their deaths. But they don’t often put their own lives on the line, and I wonder how often they expect to be asked to take the lives of others, as Mr Mercer is clearly asking others to do in his tweet.

My point is that it is easy to sign orders for other people to die, and to expect other people to carry out those orders. But it is less easy to actually do it oneself.

So what does Mr Mercer’s tweet actually mean? As indicated, this has been the subject of heated debate.

An article in The Independent has published several responses which make good points, as follows:

“Noelle Moysi said: “Is this really what you mean? You’re an MP and words matter. Jo Cox was killed by someone fighting for what they believed in. Jo Cox’s murderer saw her as an enemy of the nation and shouted the words Britain first as he did it.”

“Helen Troup‏ said Mr Mercer’s remarks were “exactly the justification used by the IRA of course”.

“Lavendar Luke said: “I believe synth music is better than guitar music. Yet when I kill and fight for my beliefs I’m ‘a psychopath’ apparently. Thanks for standing up for me Johnny.””

My own suggestion about the meaning of the tweet would be this:

It means he wants he wants the young people of the United Kingdom to put themselves at risk of death in order to subject the oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless to the worst far-right-wing domination possible, while he and his fellow Tories sit back and call the shots.

No thanks. If he wants to go around bullying other people – at home or abroad – he can damn well try it on his own and see how far his “values” get him then.

These Tories always talk big when the odds are stacked in their favour and it’s your life on the line.

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London Tories threaten break from main party ahead of local election wipeout

[Image: The Agitator/Twitter].

This Writer agrees with Matt Thomas on Twitter, who said: “A. The Tories are in chaos. B. The Tories will stab each other in the back during a chaos.”

Let’s all leave them to it, then.

And hope any breakaway group elects Zac ‘Islamophobic campaign’ Goldsmith as its figurehead.

The Conservatives in London have reportedly held secret discussions about a potential breakaway from the national party, amid fears of an electoral wipeout in the local elections next month.

Senior Tories have hosted a series of meetings over the past year in order to draw up plans for a separate party which would boast its own brand, ­policies and figurehead separate to Theresa May.

The disclosure is deeply embarrassing for Mrs May, who is braced for the party’s worst performance in the ­capital in its 184-year history, when the ballots are cast next month.

Source: London Tories threaten breakaway from main party ahead of projected local elections wipeout


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Theresa May vows to ‘defeat socialism’ and Jeremy Corbyn’s ‘populist politics’ – at exclusive banquet for the very rich

Theresa May: “Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party are exploiting populist politics” [Image: Pool New/Reuters].

She just can’t stop putting her foot in her mouth.

I wonder that nobody questioned the wisdom of attacking the so-called “populist politics” of Mr Corbyn at an exclusive dinner to which only very rich people are invited.

Mr Corbyn’s Labour Party states repeatedly that it is “for the many” – but Mrs May made her speech at an event that was open only to those who could afford the £15,000 admission fee.

That’s more than most people earn in a year.

The “free trade” and “economic liberalism” extolled by Mrs May are Tory myths. She is taking the UK into an era of highly-taxed trade, thanks to Brexit.

And what about her “rules-based order”? Tories belong to the party of deregulation. Their relaxation of the rules allowed the Grenfell Tower fire to happen, and it is on their orders that Carillion collapsed.

Mrs May’s claim that a Labour government will cause a run on the pound is rich; she has started several, simply by making speeches.

Her claim about capital flight – businesses and wealth deserting the UK – is already coming true due to Brexit (so, again, the Tories are responsible).

And Labour’s plans for re-nationalisation will return the profits from water, energy and rail companies to the United Kingdom after decades in which we paid for other nations to prosper.

She could not have made a better case for electing a Labour government.

Theresa May has pledged to “defeat socialism” as she attacked Jeremy Corbyn for exploiting “populist politics”.

Amid an increasingly divided Tory party, the Prime Minister has attempted to rally flagging Conservatives by turning her fire on the Labour Party.

Speaking at the Conservative Party Black and White Ball on Wednesday night, May was expected to contrast Labour’s left-wing agenda to her party being champions of “free trade, economic liberalism and the rules-based order”.

Source: Theresa May Promises To ‘Defeat Socialism’ And Jeremy Corbyn’s ‘Populist Politics’


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Defeat for far-right Austrian politician – has right-wing populism had its day?

Austrian far-right Freedom Party (FPOe) presidential candidate Norbert Hofer waits for the first projections in his office in Vienna, Austria [Image: Leonhard Foeger/Reuters].

Austrian far-right Freedom Party (FPOe) presidential candidate Norbert Hofer waits for the first projections in his office in Vienna, Austria [Image: Leonhard Foeger/Reuters].

It’s far too early to say, of course.

But the defeat of Norbert Hofer in Austria indicates that Europeans are less willing to be swayed by the anti-fact, emotion-driven, right-wing populism that is propelling the UK out of the European Union and will shortly see Donald Trump enter the White House in the USA.

Some anti-EU activists in the UK have been hoping the rise of the alt-Right (who some believe are more correctly described as neo-Nazis) would lead to the collapse and dissolution of the European Union, with new European leaders following the UK’s lead and choosing to go it alone.

Now those hopes have been dashed as, it seems, our cousins on the Continent have more common sense than has been displayed by certain voters in the UK and across the Atlantic.

It isn’t enough to suggest that the neo-Nazis, fascists, Kippers – and all the other political flotsam and jetsam who’ve been turning up lately – are ready to slither off the political stage again. Time will tell.

But those of us who want sanity in our politics can take comfort from it.

The candidate vying to become Europe’s first freely elected far-right head of state since World War Two conceded defeat in Austria’s presidential election soon after polls closed on Sunday evening.

The result is a blow to populists who had hoped a wave of anti-establishment anger sweeping Western democracies would carry Norbert Hofer to power after Britain’s Brexit referendum and Americans’ election of Donald Trump as president.

Hofer, of the anti-immigration and anti-Islam Freedom Party (FPO), conceded he had been soundly beaten by former Greens leader Alexander Van der Bellen.

Austria’s president traditionally has a largely ceremonial role. But the election, a re-run of a May vote that was overturned due to counting irregularities, had been seen as another test of populist sentiment in Europe ahead of elections in France, Germany and the Netherlands next year.

Voters may have heeded Van der Bellen’s increasingly strident warnings that Hofer wanted to follow Britain’s lead and pull Austria out of the European Union.

Source: Far-Right Camp Concedes Defeat In Austrian Presidential Election

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Iain Duncan Smith suffers court defeat on benefits cap

Vindictive animal: Iain Duncan Smith.

This is a reprieve, not a victory, I fear.

Iain Duncan Smith is a vindictive animal and, where victimising the vulnerable is concerned, he takes any setback to heart.

We – and I include myself in this because I am a carer – can expect him to come back with another attempt to penalise people who help the sick and disabled.

And he’ll probably rig the timing so it happens when we’re least able to respond.

We must be vigilant.

Iain Duncan Smith suffered a major defeat today when the High Court ruled the benefits cap should not apply to unpaid carers.

The Court has ruled that family carers who receive Carer’s Allowance should be exempt from the benefit cap – which limits the amount of benefits a family can receive to £26,000 a year.

Under savage new welfare cuts, the cap is now set to reduce even further to £23,000 in London and £20,000 elsewhere.

Mr Justice Collins found that the decision not to exempt carers was “discrimination” and not lawful.

Source: Iain Duncan Smith suffers court defeat on benefits cap – Mirror Online#ICID=sharebar_twitter#ICID=sharebar_twitter

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Voting with the Tories on ‘welfare’ will end any credibility Labour has left

George Osborne is a liar, from a party of liars - one only has to consider the UK's secret bombing of Syria - after Parliament voted against it - to see the truth in that.

George Osborne is a liar, from a party of liars – one only has to consider the UK’s secret bombing of Syria – after Parliament voted against it – to see the truth in that.

What an amazing piece in The Guardian about George Osborne’s call for “progressive” Labour MPs to support his entirely regressive changes to social security (the only people who call it “welfare” are Tories)!

Will people believe this pack of lies?

The article starts by saying he has urged “progressive” MPs in the Labour party to back his cuts in a major Commons vote today (Monday) on the Tories’ Welfare Reform and Work Bill.

He wants Labour MPs – but more importantly, the electorate, to think that the plan to cut child tax credits (among other measures) is what the public wants, and also builds on “mainstream Labour thinking”.

This is moonshine.

Labour believes that the profits of all our work should be shared out to ensure a decent standard of living for everybody, including those who cannot work but contribute to society in other ways. For example, if you have children, then you get child tax credits because their contribution to society has yet to be made.

Removing the tax credits and lowering the standard of living – as the Conservative chancellor’s plans would do to many people – is therefore the opposite of “mainstream Labour thinking”.

Osborne also calls on Labour to “stop blaming the public for its defeat”. This is typical Tory gaslighting. As a party, Labour has not blamed the public. The prevailing mood in the party is that Labour needs to draw the correct conclusions from the election result and create policies that acknowledge what the public wants, while fitting Labour values.

That’s real Labour values – not George Osborne’s fantasy.

You can tell that Labour isn’t doing as Osborne claims. Nowhere in the Guardian article is any factual evidence provided to show Labour has blamed the electorate for its defeat. Harriet Harman is paraphrased as having said the party needed to recognise that the electorate had sent Labour a message – which is quite the opposite.

Osborne also fails to support his claim that the majority of the electorate support his cuts. The majority of the electorate voted against the Conservative Party on May 7, with the Tories managing to gain only a 24.3 per cent share of the possible vote and a tiny 12-seat advantage in Parliament. That does not indicate majority support for the cuts programme.

The article states: “Osborne sprung a surprise in the budget by proposing cuts to the level of tax credits, but balanced these in part by a rise in the minimum wage to more than £9 an hour by 2020 for those over 25.” Notice that the tax credit cut is immediate, but the minimum wage will only rise to more than £9 per hour in five years’ time. How are people supposed to survive in the years between?

Also, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, the cut in tax credits, along with the other cuts that ‘Slasher’ Osborne wants to make, will remove £12 billion from the economy – but the minimum wage rise – when it finally happens – will only add £4 billion.

So the Conservatives want Labour to support an £8 billion cut in living standards for the people who can least accommodate it.

Osborne’s argument that the responsibility for ensuring decent living standards should be rebalanced, from the state handing out subsidies towards employers providing decent wages, falls because he has no intention of making employers pay decent wages.

Osborne also writes: “Three in four people – and a majority of Labour voters – think that Britain spends too much on welfare.”

Are these the same people who think 41 per cent of the entire social security budget goes on unemployment benefits, when the actual proportion is just three per cent?

Are these the same people who think 27 per cent of the entire social security budget is claimed fraudulently, when the actual proportion is just 0.7 per cent?

Are these the people who believe George Osborne’s lies, and the lies of the Conservative Government?

In case anybody is wondering, the figures quoted above are from a TUC poll that was carried out a couple of years ago. It seems that, with the help of compliant media (such as The Guardian?) the Conservatives have succeeded in continuing to mislead the general public.

Osborne continued: “For our social contract to work, we need to retain the consent of the taxpayer, not just the welfare recipient.”

People receiving social security payments are also taxpayers; indirect taxation accounts for around three-quarters of the taxes received by the UK Treasury from the 20 per cent of people in the lowest income group.

The lies keep coming: “For those that can work, I believe it is better to earn a higher income from your work than receive a higher income from welfare.” If this was true, then he would have forced the minimum wage up to a point at which people would no longer need to claim tax credits in order to receive the same amount. He didn’t; he lied.

Osborne goes on to praise interim Labour leader Harriet Harman for capitulating to the Conservatives over child tax credits. There is only one reason he would do this – to undermine support for the Labour Party by suggesting that it really is ‘Tory-Lite’. Shame on Ms Harman for allowing this to happen!

His claim, “She recognised that oppositions only advance when they … recognise that some of the arguments made by political opponents should be listened to,” would be reasonable if the argument for cutting tax credits was sound, but it isn’t – people will be worse-off in this instance. If people were to become better-off afterwards, he might have a point. As it is, it is drivel.

His very next point confirms this: “A previous Conservative opposition realised [this] 15 years ago when it accepted the case for a minimum wage.” The Conservative Party only accepted this case in 2008, under David Cameron – a Tory leader who, when campaigning unsuccessfully for the Stafford constituency seat in 1996, had said it would “send unemployment straight back up” (The Chronicle (Stafford), February 21 1996). Even now, many Tory supporters despise the minimum wage.

Osborne ended with an appeal for “moderate” Labour MPs to vote with his party.

That would be the end of any credibility Labour has remaining, as a party of Opposition.

According to The Guardian, Osborne said: “The proposals are part of a common endeavour by Labour and the Conservatives to implement difficult welfare reforms.” Again, he is trying to make the public think Labour and the Tories are the same. Labour MPs would have to be complete idiots to help him.

Some of the complete idiots in Labour who have already helped him are, according to Osborne, “New Labour work and pensions secretaries such as John Hutton, David Blunkett and James Purnell [who] all tried to reform the welfare system… Alistair Darling [who] says tax credits are ‘subsidising lower wages in a way that was never intended’ [and] Frank Field… [who] agrees the system as it stands is simply ‘not sustainable’ and the budget represents a ‘game-changer’.”

Wouldn’t social security be a little more sustainable if George Osborne spent less time obsessing about wringing more money from those who can least afford to lose it, and more time getting his extremely rich corporate friend to pay up more of the £120 billion a year they are believed to owe in unpaid taxes?

Why isn’t Labour making this point, whenever Tories like Osborne start bleating that anything is “unsustainable”?

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