Tag Archives: leak

The Labour Party founded the National Health Service. Why are its inheritors so keen to let it die?

Not for sale: the NHS shouldn’t be – unless you’re a super-rich Tory or a member of Keir Starmer’s new Labour Party, because they’re the only people who can afford privatised health.

Read this:

To This Writer, it is an act of shocking treachery for a senior member of the Labour Party – let alone its leader and Shadow Foreign Secretary – to hide evidence that a UK government is willing to sell the National Health Service, or at least all the parts of it that make it valuable to UK citizens, to foreign corporate interests for profit.

Labour founded the NHS in 1948, remember, based on the information in the so-called Beveridge Report, by the Liberal William Beveridge.

The Conservatives opposed its creation bitterly – although you wouldn’t know that to hear them talking about it today. It’s amazing how people’s minds can change when they realise they can make a huge wodge of cash, isn’t it?

And now it seems that Labour’s sell-out leaders are keen to jump onto the sell-off wagon.

It seems no matter which party the public support, we’re going to end up with a privatised health system that only the richest of us will be able to afford. If you want to know why you won’t be able to pay for health care, look up all my articles about the criminal US insurance firm Unum.

If you know anybody who voted Conservative in December, or for Starmer before April 4, why not ask them if they knew they actually intended to end their own entitlement to medical treatment?

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The great water privatisation disaster: Tory scheme means England could run out of drinking water

There’s a line in one of the Horatio Hornblower books in which the Admiral of the Fleet tells the young hero it’s every officer’s duty to leave the navy in better condition than when he found it.

That’s a good philosophy for any organisation.

What a shame the Conservatives don’t have the same philosophy – about anything at all.

In particular, we see their actual philosophy – “sell it off and ruin it” – in action in the UK’s water industry, which was privatised by the Thatcher government in 1989.

A new report by Parliament’s public accounts committee states that privatisation has been such an catastrophe that there is a serious risk that parts of England will run out of water altogether within the next 20 years.

The report says that “ponderous” water companies – 70 per cent of which are now owned by foreign businesses – have made “no progress” in reducing leakage meaning that more than three billion litres of water leaks out of the system every single day.

That’s one-fifth of the UK’s daily supply!

The committee says the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has failed to provide enough leadership in telling the private companies how to balance investment in infrastructure and reducing customer bills, but This Writer thinks that is nonsense.

The private companies are neither investing in infrastructure nor cutting costs – they are literally draining us dry.

We pay too much for the water we get and the lack of investment in the UK system by its foreign owners means soon we won’t even get it!

This is a problem entirely created by the Conservatives with their ridiculous lie that private firms are more efficient, more economical, and cost the consumer less. They aren’t, they aren’t and they don’t.

And by letting these firms fall into the hands of foreign business people, it seems our money is being invested into the systems in their own countries, rather than in ours. It’s certainly boosting the treasuries of the countries where these firms are based in tax – rather than our own.

This is an English problem.

Scotland receives its supply from the publicly-owned company Scottish Water, which is the most trusted public utility in the UK. It constantly invests in its system, keeps customers happy – and paying less, and is even reducing its carbon footprint.

In Wales, three million people get their supply from the not-for-profit firm Glas Cymru/Welsh Water which, according to surveys, has sector-leading levels of customer satisfaction.

Customers in Northern Ireland do not pay water charges to their publicly-owned water supplier, Northern Ireland Water.

England is less lucky.

Anglian Water is owned by a consortium consisting of Canada Pension Plan Investment BoardColonial First State Global Asset ManagementIFM Investors and 3i.

Northumbrian Water is owned by Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings.

Southern Water is owned by a consortium called Greensands Holdings Limited, comprising  JP Morgan Asset Management (40%), UBS Asset Management (22%), Hermes Infrastructure Funds (21%) and Whitehelm Capital (8%).

Wessex Water is owned by a Malaysian firm, YTL Corporation.

Affinity Water is part-owned by US firm Morgan Stanley.

Bristol Water is part-owned by Japanese Itochu corporation.

South East Water is part-owned by Utilities Trust of Australia.

And Sutton and East Surrey Water is owned by the Japanese Sumitomo Corporation.

Other water firms are still UK-based – and some are only part foreign-owned.

Across the board, bills have increased by 40 per cent on average. Considering the efforts made by the publicly-owned/not-for-profit firms, it’s likely that some English customers have suffered much higher hikes.

Shareholders have received at least £56 billion since privatisation in 1989.

Six water companies have been found to be avoiding millions in tax.

Water makes big money.

But you can see that most of it has been going abroad.

It certainly hasn’t been used to plug any leaks!

The message is clear: public ownership is cheaper, more efficient, and guarantees that customers’ taps won’t run dry.

It seems the private shareholders are swimming in cash while ensuring that, in a very short time, you die of thirst.

Source: England faces “serious risk of running out of water within 20 years” – Committees – UK Parliament

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Bungling Starmer is stumbling through one race-related fiasco after another

Dithering and indecisive: and we were told he would sweep Labour back into power!

Keir Starmer is now in serious trouble.

His tone-deaf description of Black Lives Matter as a “moment” – along with a series of other race-related mishaps – has upset a multitude of voters – not just black or from ethnic minorities but everybody – and heralded a mass exodus that he seems ill-equipped to stem.

And the mass media are full of stories about it.

Here‘s black, working-class woman – and now-former Labour member – Evie Muir in Metro:

When Starmer took over this year, I was open to the change in leadership. His voting record on social issues mirrored my values and I was hopeful that this would be reflected in his actions moving forward.

But over the past few weeks, I’ve found myself distancing from the Labour Party at an evolving pace.

Starmer … positioned himself as a leader who will not be exploring [racism] for the party’s constituents. He is not only gatekeeping a problematic institution, but also failing to recognise the nuances within the relationship between the police and Black communities in the UK.

His comments are neglectful of the most recent examples of incompetency in the sector, including the circumstances around 12-year-old Shukri Yahye-Abdi’s death by drowning, and the police officers who just weeks ago allegedly took selfies with Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry, two murdered Black women.

After the statement [on Black Lives Matter] went viral, former UKIP leader Nigel Farage, notorious for his unapologetic bigotry, right wing rhetoric and anti-multiculturalism stance, tweeted that he ‘heartily agrees’ with Starmer’s condemnation of the BLM organisation.

I immediately cancelled my Labour Party membership.

I am not the only one to abandon Labour. My social media feeds, WhatsApp groups and DMs sprung to life with likeminded friends telling me they feel equally betrayed.

Questioning the validity of the only organisation that advocates for Black people, questions the validity of all Black people.

If the Labour Party is not prepared to listen to the needs of Black people, unapologetically support these and advocate for our rights to be heard, then the party is no longer a safe place for us. You are either with us or you are against us, there is no room for debating our humanity, excusing our oppressors or talking over us. This only puts us in further danger.

Starmer’s statement othered us so completely that I no longer feel like we have a home in the party, and as an avid and loyal Labour advocate, this turnaround is humiliating.

I won’t be forgetting Starmer’s comments, and I won’t be returning to Labour under his leadership.

This article has been endorsed by at least one black Labour MP:

Black Lives Matter has published its own opinion:

If you click on the link to the article, you’ll see that BLM is asking Labour members to report anti-black racism within the party – including, presumably, that of its leaders – to their regional offices, with contact details included, hence Jackie Walker’s exhortation for people to do it.

Here’s a tweet identifying two more issues alongside the Black Lives Matter fiasco:

The first point refers to the way party officials allegedly defended “racist, sexist and abusive” messages about colleagues, as seen in the leaked Labour report on the party’s response to allegations of anti-Semitism.

Here‘s The Independent:

One third of the National Executive Committee’s members, including representatives from four trade unions, wrote to the Labour leader this week accusing his office of misleading them about how the party dealt with leaked WhatsApp messages by senior officials detailed in a controversial internal report.

The messages, which included senior officials saying they wished a prominent Labour activist would die in a fire, calling a left-wing staffer “pube head”, and commenting that female advisers had “stopped wearing bras” in meetings, provoked widespread anger in the party when they came to light earlier this year. The party’s NEC ordered an investigation, which is still ongoing.

However, last week Labour’s press office provided a statement to journalists covering the story that defended the comments, describing criticism as “po-faced” and stating: “These were messages exchanged between co-workers in the expectation that they would remain private and confidential and the tone of the language used reflects that.”

The comment outraged NEC members, who called for an apology and retraction at a meeting of the body on Tuesday, but Sir Keir’s office is understood to have told them that the statement was not intended for publication and said it had been provided by the party’s lawyers.

But the offending statement, which The Independent has seen in full, was sent to journalists at the OpenDemocracy website from the Labour press office’s main email account and refers to “the party’s lawyers” in the third person. Although clearly written in legal language, it has the subject line “Re: URGENT: Right of reply offer pre-publication”, suggesting it was issued in response to a request for comment.

Labour has launched an inquiry into the contents of the leaked report, but NEC members – rightly – pointed out that this was now prejudiced by the press release:

In their letter to Sir Keir, the 13 NEC members said: “The Labour Party’s statement was not only inexcusable in defending the racist, sexist and abusive comments in the WhatsApp groups, it also directly prejudged the specific issues that Martin Forde’s inquiry is considering. This prejudices Martin Forde’s inquiry and thereby undermines its independence.

“It is clearly unacceptable for party officials or officials in the leader’s office to politically interfere with or compromise the integrity of the independent investigation that the NEC has commissioned. As members of the NEC, we therefore ask that you issue an immediate apology for this Labour Party statement and retract it completely.”

No such apology or retraction appears to have been made. A statement that the quoted comments “do not in any way represent the party’s position in relation to the contents of the leaked report overall and do not prejudge the outcome of those investigations” is unconvincing; we can judge those words for ourselves.

The storm over the sacking of Rebecca Long-Bailey has been well-documented on This Site and elsewhere.

All in all, it seems Starmer has dug a hole for himself and seems determined to sit in it.

Perhaps he thinks this will all blow over and he’ll be able to carry on as though he hasn’t made a damn fool of himself and everybody who follows him.

It won’t.

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Why did Labour suspend members after anti-Semitism dossier leak – and keep quiet about it?

Labour: whose memberships has the party suspended?

This is peculiar.

The Labour Party has said it has suspended party members named in a leaked party report as having broken rules.

The claim, it seems, was not made voluntarily but in response to High Court litigation.

A party member named Mark Howell has brought a claim for breach of contract against the party, demanding damages as well as the expulsion of members who broke internal rules and a referral to the CPS for possible prosecutions.

He claims party funds and resources were deliberately deployed at the 2017 election, “not to win vulnerable seats presently held by rival parties but instead to increase majorities in safe seats of certain favoured party Members of Parliament.”

In other words, he says Labour breached its contract by sabotaging its election campaign in not trying to win enough seats to win a Parliamentary majority.

According to the Evening Standard:

The court heard three separate investigations have been launched by Labour since the report was leaked, while a written legal argument on the party’s behalf confirmed that members have been suspended.

“The party has promptly commenced an investigation into whether any members referred to in the Report have, based on the materials referred to in the Report, breached the Party’s rules”, it said.

“Some of the party members have been suspended from membership so far as it is necessary to do so to protect the integrity of the investigation.”

“To protect the integrity of the investigation” – to This Writer, that suggests the suspensions were of party officers who might have had a chance to interfere – such as those in the governance and legal unit, which investigates anti-Semitism accusations, among other complaints.

But it may also indicate suspensions of people suspected of leaking the report.

The party has faced multiple, insistent demands for suspensions over the allegations in the report but stonewalled – suggesting the latter is the more likely case.

Labour has insisted that no further hearings will be needed until its internal investigations – three of them – are concluded, around mid-July.

We’ll know the way the wind is blowing by then, in any event, depending on whether any of those accused of sabotaging the 2017 election or racially abusing Labour MPs end up facing expulsion or other punitive action – or if someone is named as the whistleblower who leaked the report.

And that should tell us everything we need to know about Keir Starmer’s position on this issue.

Source: Labour Party suspends members after anti-Semitism dossier leak ‘to protect integrity’ of internal probe | London Evening Standard

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If Black Lives Matter to Keir Starmer, why hasn’t he acted against Labour’s racists?

New direction: Labour leader Keir Starmer (right) and deputy Angela Rayner (left) spot Diane Abbott and Clive Lewis at a PLP meeting.

Labour seems slow to comment on anything lately, but these words seem to have struck a raw nerve:

It’s a good point, well-made. The Labour report that claimed party staff members had deliberately obstructed anti-Semitism investigations in order to make then-leader Jeremy Corbyn seem anti-Semitic himself, and that suggested the same staffers had conspired to prevent Labour from winning the 2017 general election (the 2019 election was not part of its subject matter), includes evidence of anti-black and minority ethnic racism too.

But new party leader Keir Starmer has not lifted a finger to investigate these claims.

Alleged anti-Semites are suspended the instant claims are made against them – true or false – and the allegations are now pursued with a fervour not seen since the Salem witch trials of the 17th century.

But Starmer’s – and Rayner’s – Labour seems to think it fine for staff members to persecute the UK’s first and longest-serving black female MP, who already suffers more than half of all the racist abuse directed at any MPs.

Perhaps this is the reason Labour is allegedly haemorrhaging BAME support, as reported by the Huffington Post:

Labour Party voters are still reeling from the aftermath of a leaked Labour report that has fuelled allegations of anti-Black racism at the heart of the party – and many have told HuffPost UK that they now feel “politically homeless”.

It also did something else that was not on the tin: raised grave concerns of anti-Black racism, otherwise referred to as Afriphobia, which campaigners argue have not been adequately addressed by the party’s leadership.

Labour officials used a string of insults in private WhatsApp groups to describe senior Black MPs and officials including Diane Abbott, Dawn Butler and Clive Lewis, the lengthy document revealed.

For a number of Black voters it meant it was time to part ways with the party.

For many, this scandal is the latest let-down in a long list of concerns around Blackness and the Labour Party such as lack of representation.

Now we see Starmer and Rayner making a token display of support for the Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of the killing of George Floyd.

This Writer has contributed more with the articles published on This Site about that subject.

Could it be that Labour really has become as racist – under Starmer – as some complained it was under Corbyn?

And do we really have to wait until July, when an inquiry into the Labour report is due to release its findings, for that to become clear?

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Labour asks police to investigate death threats & abuse on staff said to have sabotaged election campaign

Keir Starmer: he has asked police to investigate death threats on Labour staff accused of sabotaging the party’s election chances – not to investigate whether they actually did work to arrange a Tory election victory.

The Daily Mirror seems to have headlined its story wrongly.

We’re told Labour has asked police to investigate claims that party staff worked for a Tory election victory – and against a win for Labour under Jeremy Corbyn.

But the article itself only states that

Death threats and abuse against staff involved have been reported and police called as the wide-ranging probe gets under way.

To This Writer, the article seems to be saying the exact opposite of the headline.

The investigation is about protecting the staff alleged to have sabotaged a Labour victory.

I should point out that it is perfectly reasonable and responsible for police to investigate death threats. Threatening to kill someone is a serious crime.

But people reading the article would have had reason to believe police had been called in to find out whether the claim – informing the leaked Labour report on the way anti-Semitism accusations were handled – was right.

I don’t think it’s an attempt to mislead the public but it does require an explanation.

Source: Labour ask police to investigate claims staff worked for Tory election victory – Mirror Online

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LabourLeaks: will party leaders take disciplinary action while inquiry is ongoing?

The scope of an investigation into the leaked Labour report on a right-wing faction’s interference will not stop party members being suspended and investigated for improper behaviour, it seems.

So it is entirely possible for Keir Starmer and his team to suspend the memberships of all those who are named as responsible for misconduct in their roles as party officers, investigate what happened alongside the investigation into the report, and finally expel them if necessary.

The investigation’s full terms of reference have yet to be published but a LabourList report states that:

  • “The inquiry does not preclude disciplinary action by the party… the new leadership team was not trying to discourage such action from being taken by the party in line with normal processes, and in fact “they’re encouraged” to do so.”
  • The person who leaked the report will be protected as a whistleblower. A Momentum spokesperson said: “While the report should not have been leaked unredacted, Labour is Britain’s largest political party and the contents were clearly in the public interest. Labour’s half a million members deserved to know what was happening at the top of their party, and those involved in bringing these actions to light must not be penalised.”
  • Sources say the independent investigation will not focus on the leaking of the report in terms of identifying the leaker(s), though how and why the leak occurred will be considered.

Of course, both Starmer and deputy leader Angela Rayner have said they support introducing an independent complaints system.

For the benefit of Labour members: this means the party, as data controller, would pass your personal details to somebody completely unconnected with it, who you may not wish to have information about you, without consulting you about it and without asking your consent. This runs contrary to the Data Protection Act.

A majority vote in Conference will not be enough to give the party legal justification for such a move. It will have to gain the consent of every single party member – and if just one of you refuses to allow it, then the party will be acting illegally in doing it.

That’s the law.

This Site will continue to report on this matter as developments continue to take place.

Source: Labour’s ruling body agrees scope of investigation into leaked report – LabourList

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Labourleaks: right-wingers on NEC try to suspend people they suspect – without evidence

Wow, the new right-wing-dominated Labour National Executive Committee really is something, isn’t it?

Apparently, at its meeting today, certain unnamed extremists called for the suspension of people they suspect of leaking the Labour report showing right-wing factional interference in anti-Semitism investigations and in general elections.

Did they have any evidence? No!

It’s like the run-up to the party’s leadership election in 2016, all over again.

We can only surmise that these specimens were engaging in exactly the kind of factionalism that the report highlighted. If anything were to show that its information was accurate, it must be this.

Incidentally, while we have more than 850 pages of evidence indicating misconduct by right-wing Labour officers, it seems their colleagues on the NEC have a blind spot there; no action was proposed against the alleged wrong-doers.

Fortunately for sanity, the proposal was not agreed.

If it had been, then Labour’s more than half a million members would have had grounds for an immediate vote of no confidence in the committee. I urge all party members to watch these representatives closely.

Source: Labour right trying to suspend suspected leakers without evidence while those implicated in report carry on as normal | The SKWAWKBOX

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Who is the worst threat to Labour over the leaked report on right-wing factionalism?

For the many: it seems Labour’s apparent failure to live up to its slogan could do more damage to the party than a few defamation/data protection claims.

How surprising to see The Guardian reporting on a financial threat to Labour after a report was leaked alleging misconduct by party officers that meant the party lost the 2017 general election!

Instead of stating that rank-and-file party members were getting together to demand their subscriptions – that they could argue were taken under false pretences as party officers were working against winning the election…

I found that the people accused of the misconduct are planning to sue the party for defamation and data protection offences.

On one hand I am encouraged by this. I have taken Labour to court over data protection offences after (false) information about me was leaked to the national press by a party officer.

The fact that others are considering the same suggests that I was well within my rights to accuse the party (because, as data controller, it has ultimate responsibility for leaks).

On the other, it is doubtful that any defamation claims should be allowed to go anywhere – at least, not yet.

The information about party members in the report is taken from emails and WhatsApp messages that were placed in the hands of party investigators legitimately and it would be premature for anybody to launch lawsuits on the basis of it, until evidence is brought forward that disproves it.

Also, consider the words of the lawyer concerned, Mark Lewis. He said: “For four years, people in Labour have said there is no antisemitism in the party, it’s just a smear. Now they say that of course there was antisemitism, ‘but it just wasn’t us’. They have not noticed the absurdity of their change of position.”

Nobody in Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour leadership said there was no anti-Semitism in the party. I haven’t said that. None of the other higher-profile members who were accused has made that suggestion (to my knowledge).

So who, exactly made that claim? I notice that Mr Lewis did not elaborate on its origin and that is another reason to doubt the usefulness of these threatened lawsuits.

Are they just an attempt to bully the current Labour leadership? Why would anybody expect that to work?

On the other hand, going back to the wider party membership, it seems far more likely that action brought by rank-and-file members would succeed in restoring their subscription money to them.

If enough people do this, then it could put Labour in serious financial difficulty.

And it is entirely possible that the party would deserve to be put in that predicament – if the allegations in the report turn out to be accurate.

Source: Labour party faces financial peril over leaked report | Politics | The Guardian

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How many Labour members will follow this councillor’s example – and demand refunds?

Labour now has an existential problem.

More than half a million members have heard that party staff spent years working to stop the party from winning at elections, and to foment distrust by – for example – failing to do anything about anti-Semitism.

They have been told that the party they joined – and into which they paid subscriptions – has been actively working against their wishes.

And over the last week, they have seen the new leader of that party doing his very best to protect the perpetrators of this monumental betrayal.

So it seems likely that many of them – huge numbers, in fact – will follow the example of Sarah-Jane McDonough and demand the return of the subscriptions they rightly feel were taken under false pretences.

If enough of them do that – and many may band together to demand it through the courts if the party tries to deny them what they want – Labour will run out of money and cease to function.

So Keir Starmer is likely to be facing a choice – either now or in the near future.

He can make explicitly public efforts to clean up the Labour Party – or he can learn to live with being the disgraced leader who killed the Party of the People. It’s up to him.

A Labour councillor is demanding that the party fully refunds all her membership fees and donations following the revelation that senior HQ staff conspired to sabotage Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.

Stevenage councillor Sarah-Jane McDonough has written to request a refund of payments from May 2015 to the present day on the grounds that they were taken “fraudulently.”

Her letter was sent after an internal Labour report, titled The Work of the Labour Party’s Governance and Legal Unit in Relation to Antisemitism, 2014-2019, was leaked last weekend.

Management and staff on the right of the party were found to have used abusive language in WhatsApp chats to disparage Mr Corbyn and his supporters, along with other left-wing MPs and party employees.

The culprits also boasted of doing no work for months and conspiring to sabotage election campaigns and Labour’s attempts to deal with anti-semitism complaints.

Source: Labour councillor demands refund from party after leaked report exposed sabotage of Corbyn | Morning Star

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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