Tag Archives: Labour

The people want a windfall tax on big firms’ pandemic profits. Why is Keir Starmer getting in the way?

Keir Starmer: yet another own goal.

I bet certain commentators will be doing their best to muddy this issue so let’s make it clear:

There are moves to increase Corporation Tax, forcing companies to pay more when they could be investing that money in (for example) employment of people who desperately need a regular paycheque. This is a bad idea.

There are also moves to levy a windfall tax on firms and individuals who have profited from the Covid-19 pandemic – such as Amazon and all those Tory cronies who won huge Covid-related contracts. This is a good idea and is supported by 70 per cent of the population, according to a Survation poll.

Keir Starmer and his Zombie Labour party oppose any increase in taxation for businesses.

There will be voters who are shocked that anybody claiming to be a Labour Party representative should plead against taxing corporations, and while there are good reasons for leaving Corporation Tax low at the moment, although it is likely that firms will need further incentives to keep them on the straight and narrow, there is no reason at all to back away from a windfall tax.

This decision is spitting in the faces of the voters – at a time when Starmer desperately needs to get them on-side.

Labour is falling increasingly further behind, at a time when – we were told – the party should be at least 20 points ahead of anybody else, having dumped Jeremy Corbyn.

Is it time his supporters’ club admitted that this wasn’t true and Starmer is a non-starter?

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Lavery demands working-class Labour MPs – but what do we get?

Telling it like it is: Ian Lavery.

Here’s another split between Keir Starmer’s Labour leadership and senior party MPs.

Ian Lavery was party chairman under Jeremy Corbyn and is a member of the Socialist Group of Labour MPs. I’m sure that, once upon a time, every Labour MP was a socialist but now there’s only a rump of around 30.

He was replaced as chair by deputy leader Angela Rayner so you can tell which way the wind is blowing.

Lavery is putting forward a viewpoint that will be particularly unpopular with the Starmer faction that currently has control: he thinks the Party of the Workers should have working-class representatives.

We have seen from the treatment of Anna Rothery in Liverpool that Starmer doesn’t like any hint of socialism in his Labour Party and will take extraordinary steps to stamp on it (his behaviour towards her also suggests he doesn’t like anybody who isn’t white and male, but that’s another story).

Lavery says:

Labour representatives cannot focus group their way to a better society. We need people with the heart and instincts that can only come from the bitter sting of personal experience. Parliament is desperately short of people who have claimed benefits, gone through life with disabilities or struggled day in day out in bad employment. This past year we have seen key workers carry the country on their backs, yet the green benches are sadly lacking in them too. We desperately need people with this experience to rebuild our country.

Labour has a history of promoting positive discrimination and it has an even longer history of championing the cause of working people. It is time that we remember our roots and embrace protected places for working class candidates throughout of our movement. If we do not trust in the power of people from our heartlands, why should they ever again put their trust in us?

Excellent points – although I fear the ideal of protected places for working-class candidates may not weather the reality of Starmer’s leadership, as Anna Rothery was standing for election to be Liverpool’s executive mayor as part of a protected all-female list and Starmer scrapped that when he realised she was black, a socialist, and female.

And I fear that Lavery only gets to make these point because he has held a senior post in the Labour Party.

I recently heard about an MP in Bristol who has given up positions as a junior shadow minister and as Starmer’s PPS “to concentrate on constituency work”. Maybe that’s true. But generally they only take a reduction in pay grade if they have serious disagreements with the leader.

It occurs to me that this MP cannot say as much, though, due to a lack of seniority. At junior grade they can’t speak their mind because the leaders will eat them for breakfast.

That’s how it seems to me, anyway.

It is no way for the Labour Party to behave.

But that’s Keir Starmer and all his minions for you.

Source: Ian Lavery on the Need for Working Class Labour MPs | Beastrabban\’s Weblog

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The Anna Rothery scandal suggests Labour is a sexist and racist institution under Starmer

Anna Rothery: her socialism is probably the reason she has been dropped as a Liverpool mayoral candidate. But the decision is also sexist and racist – and that is how Keir Starmer’s Labour party should now be described.

How is this an improvement?

Let’s go through the information we have, and please correct any errors.

There will be an election to fill the role of executive Mayor of Liverpool after Joe Anderson retired under a cloud.

The Labour Party held a selection process using an all-female shortlist which produced three candidates, including current Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Anna Rothery.

However, examination of Ms Rothery by party leaders revealed that she is:

  • female
  • black, and
  • socialist.

It seems that these are considered undesirable elements in Labour candidates under Keir Starmer’s leadership.

This may come as a surprise to many, especially as he should have expected a selection process that demanded that all candidates are female to produce candidates who aren’t men.

The selection process has reopened. It seems clear that the aim is to parachute in a candidate who is as neoliberal-blue as Starmer himself – in denial of Liverpool Labour members’ right to a free and democratic selection.

But the fact is that he will have eliminated a black woman to do it.

Therefore it is possible to claim that Starmer’s Labour is prejudiced against women and against people of colour: he and his party are sexist and racist.

I am reminded that his forerunner as Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, suffered years of attacks, both in the media and by backstabbing right-wingers within the Parliamentary Labour Party, based on fabricated accusation of anti-Semitism.

So I ask:

How is genuine racism and sexism better than fake anti-Semitism?

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Starmer’s policy blitz will land like a damp squib if he can’t show strong differences from the Tories

Starmer: now he wants us to believe he has policies beyond waving a flag and wearing a suit. But the preliminary evidence suggests that he’s blowing smoke at us.

What a mess Keir Starmer is! Even when he gets the message, he refuses to act on it properly.

We’re told he is about to launch on a “policy blitz”, announcing what a future Labour government will do, after being roundly ridiculed over a briefing advising him to wear smart suits and rely on patriotism (“the last refuge of a scoundrel”).

Potentially, it is a good idea. Under his leadership, Labour has abandoned policy after policy until, today, it no longer stands for anything. People are sick of seeing Starmer either supporting the government or abstaining on major votes.

So he’ll be announcing Labour’s future direction of travel – the philosophy that fuels his politics and the practical ways he intends to bring it into effect in government. Right?

Wrong.

If the measures outlined in The Guardian‘s article are any yardstick, he’ll do nothing more than say what he’d do different from the Tories, now. Look:

An immediate focus will be financial support for business – particularly the hospitality sector – which Starmer will highlight has taken on unfeasibly high debts during the Covid-19 crisis.

Labour won’t have any power to help businesses until December 2024 at the earliest – by which time they may not need any support. Those that are under threat now will either have died or recovered!

It would be much better to provide an analysis of how Tory political dogma has failed the UK’s businesses – taking in not only the Covid crisis but also Brexit – and to put forward a positive plan to support existing industry and emerging commercial opportunities.

How will a Labour government support working people to get a better share of the profits from successful business enterprises? How will they stop the cash being bled out to tax havens by stockholders? How will they ensure working people can regain the rights they have lost since the 1970s?

It seems Starmer has nothing to say about these issues.

So the “source” who said the vaccine programme is relieving the immediate public health crisis, and

“That means we can start to focus on the bigger picture stuff and talk about systemic change,”

is not telling the truth.

But it is the “bigger picture stuff” that will win hearts and minds across the country – or alienate them.

All Starmer has offered so far is more of the same – support for Tory policies and for Tory incompetence. If he couldn’t tell that the Tories were wrong to reopen schools, then he doesn’t deserve the confidence of the public.

The Tories have failed – not just under Boris Johnson’s government of corruption but under Theresa May and David Cameron before him. They failed because their ideas were wrong.

If Starmer can’t prove that he has better ideas – or even different ones – then he won’t even get the chance to show us how wrong he is.

Source: Keir Starmer to launch fightback with Labour policy blitz | Labour | The Guardian

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Forde inquiry into leaked Labour anti-Semitism report delayed – but does it matter?

Jeremy Corbyn: the Forde Inquiry could have exonerated him from any implications of support for anti-Semitism but it seems to have been gagged from doing so.

Martin Forde QC’s report on the leaked report into the way anti-Semitism was handled by Labour Party officers has been delayed. But does it really matter after its focus was watered down to almost nothing?

Mr Forde told Labour’s National Executive Committee he was delaying his report to avoid prejudicing an inquiry by the Information Commissioner’s Office into whether the leak breached data protection laws.

But is this really likely, considering that the Forde Inquiry is apparently now focused only on examining “the structure, culture and practices of the Labour Party”.

It had originally been charged with some much more interesting and worthwhile purposes.

But in an all-but-ignored announcement last summer, Mr Forde announced that he would not, after all, “investigate and report on the truth or otherwise of the main allegations in the report”.

This was the inquiry’s most important purpose. The report had produced a mountain of evidence which, if true, cleared Corbyn of claims that he had been complacent on anti-Semitism.

Instead, it implicated party officials who had been among his fiercest critics with claims that they actively worked to prevent the party as led by Corbyn from winning a general election.

If the claims were found to be true, then claims that Corbyn and his supporters were soft on – or even supported – anti-Semitism would have been exposed as primarily a witch-hunt.

But now, nobody is checking the basic accuracy of the report at all.

Also ditched was the requirement to investigate why the report was written and how it was leaked.

So it seems there is little point in being concerned about when the Forde Report will be released. It simply won’t provide any information worth waiting for.

Source: Labour: Report into anti-Semitism dossier leak delayed – BBC News

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Concern over Starmer prompts Labour special conference call. Media attack ‘ruthless Corbynites’

It’s ludicrous. But people believe it – and that makes it dangerous too.

Yes, left-wingers in the Labour Party are calling for an emergency party conference – possibly to take place in June alongside the Women’s Conference.

But their reasons are perfectly rational: Keir Starmer’s lurch to the right – appealing to voters by waving the flag, wearing a suit and sporting a pretty haircut – isn’t working.

Poll results make this perfectly clear.

And this Huffington Post report spells it out:

The motion… reads: “Discussion in local Labour Party meetings has been suppressed; motions banned; scores of activists suspended; and anger and disillusionment is exploding across our lay membership across the party.

“Members are leaving in droves and many more are expressing frustration and dissatisfaction at the attack on democracy and free speech. Many members are saying it doesn’t feel like the Labour Party anymore.”

There is also frustration after several ex-officials suspended over the contents of a damning leaked report have been let back into Labour. 

Starmer faces criticism from the left over plans, reported in the Sunday Times, to woo businesses ahead of May’s local elections.

The Guardian also last week revealed a strategy document which said Labour was considering refocusing on patriotism, the Union flag and veterans’ causes to win back “Red Wall” seats captured by the Conservatives in 2019.

Reporter Rachel Wearmouth couldn’t resist claiming that Labour had seen a “massive improvement” at the polls – but this is not borne out by any evidence.

And she also claimed that Labour feared a “vaccine bounce” in the polls for the Tories, in the belief that the UK’s rollout of injections is one of the best in the world.

The problem is, the Tories are leaving the job half-done for most people, with only one of the two jabs they must have actually being administered and the second being delayed until up to 12 weeks after the first.

Pfizer, creator of one of the vaccines, has stated categorically that the second injection should happen no later than six weeks after the first. Otherwise there is no point having either.

It all adds up to another attack on the Labour Left – that could be accurately described as victim-blaming.

Left-wingers have been ruthlessly targeted by Starmer and his cronies – the most prominent being his immediate forerunner as party leader, Jeremy Corbyn.

And of course no mention is made in the media to the years of backstabbing from centrists when Corbyn was in charge.

Will the call for a recall conference succeed? I doubt it.

The Parliamentary Labour Party is stuffed with “centrists” (read: right-wingers). It was a policy of the Blair/Brown years and Corbyn was unable to reverse it, despite a long-running debate over whether constituency parties should have the power to choose their own candidates rather than having people parachuted in by head office.

With so many “centrists” at the top of the party, it seems extremely unlikely that a poll of the entire membership that may lead to the removal of a “centrist” leader will be allowed.

See if I’m wrong.

Source: Exclusive: Demand For Special Labour Conference As Pressure Mounts On Starmer From Left | HuffPost UK

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Better late than never? Labour demand end to Tory ‘crony contracts’ SEVEN MONTHS after they were reported

Should we be applauding Labour’s demand for the Conservative government to stop handing contracts to firms with links to the Conservative Party?

If so, it should be the slow, mocking handclap that denotes disapproval. This move comes no less than seven months after the so-called Tory ‘chumocracy’ was revealed to the nation.

Did Rachel Reeves have to wait for a focus group to say it was okay to talk about this?

I think so.

And her words ring hollow.

She has said that a Labour government would overturn government outsourcing, bringing contracts back into the public sector, reform Freedom of Information rules to include companies who are awarded government contracts, create an ‘Anti-Corruption and anti-cronyism commissioner’ as a check on government contracts.

But we don’t have a Labour government. And the earliest we can now expect to get one is December 2024.

By then, knowing that Labour is now ruled by focus groups and by politicians who might as well be Tories themselves, we must expect all the policies to be different; Starmer Labour changes to reflect whatever it thinks will get it into power.

If Labour really cared about £2 billion of public money going into the hands of amateurs who did nothing with it, Reeves (or whoever) would have spoken out about it last July, when I did.

Doing it now only lays bare the cynicism at the hollow heart of Starmer Labour.

Source: Labour call for clean up of ‘crony contracts’ as £2bn in deals handed to Tory pals – Mirror Online

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Labour courts celebrities after flag-shagging failure

After last week’s farcical attempt to attract knuckle-scraping nationalists by having flags hanging behind them wherever they go, Labour’s leaders have found another way to distract from the fact that they have no policies distinct from the Tories.

Keir Starmer was instantly denounced as a “flag-shagger” after details of a Labour Party briefing urging representatives to wear suits and be seen with the Union Flag were leaked to the public.

I don’t know the origin of the phrase. I wonder whether it has something to do with politicians who have their wives standing behind them when they make a speech (Donald Trump comes to mind).

Now consider this:

(I know, it’s from The Times, which is not considered a bastion of the left-wing press.)

“Labour tells MPs to woo stars and influencers ahead of local elections” the headline proclaims.

And the picture caption adds: “Labour has previously won endorsements from music and film stars such as the actor Martin Freeman, the singer Dua Lipa and the rapper Stormzy.”

I don’t know what you think, but This Writer can’t see any of the three stars named there being particularly keen for Starmer to shag them – even if only figuratively.

Facebook has been a goldmine of comments on this. For instance: “I’m wondering which celebrities will come forward to endorse Keir Starmer. All the celebs who endorsed Jeremy Corbyn will understandably still feel a bit sore after the PLP turned cannibal on its own members. Robert Webb and Hal Cruttenden (who he?) tore up their membership cards.”

This is true, and it means that Labour would probably have to offer something to any “name” before getting their endorsement.

In other words (and this is from another Facebook comment): “‘We want you to whore out and whore out hard! You saw what Miliband did with Russell Brand? Yeah. That!'”

No political party should ever put itself in a position where it is comparable with a prostitute – selling itself for short-term gain.

Think about it. What message does that send out to the public?

It says Labour is available for hire and will do what it is told. It doesn’t stand for anything and certainly won’t represent the best interests of anybody but Keir Starmer and his cronies.

 

 

Fake Labour: Starmer should know obsequious flag-waving and a haircut won’t fool voters

Fake: Jeremy Corbyn had authentic Labour policies; Keir Starmer has a flag, a haircut, and a face that looks more like Frank Spencer than Gavin Williamson’s.

A leaked internal strategy presentation suggests Keir Starmer’s Labour Party is hoping to win back voters with exaggerated patriotism, smart suits (and haircuts), and the exploitation of veterans.

There seems to be no suggestion that Starmer should try to present his hollowed-out sub-Tory party as actually standing for anything. “Labour” seems to be be nothing more than an old title that no longer has any significance at all.

The presentation itself is based on the findings of focus groups, showing that the general public no longer has any idea what – or who – Labour is supposed to represent and thinks that Starmer’s position on any subject is to sit on the fence.

And he’s considered to be the party’s “biggest positive driver”!

It seems Starmer is trying to find a way to present himself and his fake Labour as “authentic”. In short: it’s a blueprint for lying to the nation.

Obsequious flag-waving nationalism isn’t going to cut any mustard with Labour’s core voters, though – for reasons that Clive Lewis, an MP who served with the armed forces in Afghanistan, has made clear:

“It’s not patriotism; it’s Fatherland-ism. There’s a better way to build social cohesion than moving down the track of the nativist right.

“The Tory party has absorbed Ukip and now Labour appears to be absorbing the language and symbols of the Tory party.”

His critique is mild. Here are a few more:

And here’s an answer to the whole sorry mess:

Source: Leak reveals Labour plan to focus on flag and patriotism to win back voters | Labour | The Guardian

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is still available in either print or eBook format here:

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Bad timing: ‘Baloo Labour’ beats Starmer’s party political broadcast in public imagination

Keir Starmer: yet another own goal.

He only has himself to blame.

Today, Keir Starmer’s Labour Party released a party political broadcast. Here it is, but you don’t need to watch beyond the point where the focus puller wakes up and sharpens the image because it seems everybody had switched off by then. There’s a reason for that…

It’s because everybody was watching THIS:

It really is the best thing to come out of 2020s politics so far.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook