Will the Labour Party Survive and How?
Posted on September 27, 2016
Much has been said about the Labour Party being finished recently, but history suggests that like in events the sporting arena, politics is cyclical, and they can rise once again.
I have read, read some more, and some more again about the infighting between the idealists and the moderates within the Labour party, as well as how their actions are read by the general public and if indeed, the general public are swayed by the media that is dominated by right-wing media groups with a huge financial interest in keeping the Status Quo.
I have listed the following areas where I see where the issues lie and whether they can ever be healed.
The common perception of the vast majority of the British public have is that the Labour party cannot be trusted with money. Is that fair?
Now, let’s not try and pretend that they have not made mistakes in the past but the common austerity statement, “We are merely clearing up the mess left behind by Labour” must be the most classic example of ‘parrot phrasing’ in modern times.
The global crash of 2008 was down to a collapse in the subprime American mortgage market that went contagious and would have happened whether Labour, the Conservatives or The Monster raving Loony Party were in power; it was always going to happen, only the few who bet on it, saw it coming (watch the film ‘The Big Short’ it is excellent).
In the height of New Labour’s popularity, national debt of GDP was between 35% – 40%. After the crash it rose to alarming levels of around 60% which led to a coalition Government headed by David Cameron in 2010, with austerity being the ideology to take Britain forward.
The debt of GDP after 6 years of austerity, is now 90%. Not only has austerity caused hardship amongst the worst off who also rely on public services, it hasn’t worked either. Another crash and we are doomed, yet the banks have been bailed out and they are off and up to their old tricks again.
In my opinion, the only way to reduce the debt is to invest in the economy to create jobs and generate taxes. However, the emphasis of getting the revenue in must be aimed at tax evaders and avoiders who are costing the country billions, not those in middle England who are tired of propping up the economy with both taxation and spending.
Nearly everyone has been affected by tax evasion or corrupt banking by the richest 1% and it is time they paid their way. Sell that concept hard, and people will buy into it; how many people actually respect Phillip Green or Mike Ashley for instance?
Cancel university fees, abandon any talk of grammar schools and invest in education just like any other sensible nation does. Schools improved dramatically in the noughties under labour until the economic crash and the cancellation of academies.
Unfortunately, it makes sense for the elite to dominate the best education by keeping the masses ignorant and unfortunately, the Conservative party is full to the brim with MP’s who wish to maintain that. There can’t be anyone outside that circle who doesn’t believe that a good and free education should be available to every child that is born in this country.
Trying to price students out of the right to study is nothing short of scandalous.
Immigration has long been the hot potato of all recent governments as whilst there needs to be control, a country with strong economic growth will not survive without it. This is where coming out of the EU is going to hurt, as collaboration with the wealthier European countries was probably going to be the best way to share the load of the chaos that has unfolded in places such as Syria.
Taking the simplistic route of just turning people away and letting them drown or be massacred is inhumane and hardly the way to announce yourself as a great nation on the world stage. Hospitals and other public services would collapse without immigration into Britain, so simply building a brick wall across the channel is just sensationalist and moronic journalism saved for The Sun newspaper.
I have had countless European immigrants work for my company (the number has dropped recently) and there is just not an issue; I am loathe to say it but many of them have been more reliable than their British counterparts.
Exit From Europe
What a very British debacle this is. We are now in a situation where we will be negotiating a deal with a Union we used to have a good deal with. None of the ‘Out’ campaign can be achieved (who’d of thought it?) and we have David Davies attempting to oversee an exit strategy that is a good deal for the UK.
There isn’t one.
Try reading what it takes to exit and make new trade deals and your brain will be scrambled in minutes; the complexities of it all are beyond comprehension as all 27 member states would have to agree to any deal put forward by the UK.
The Conservatives were split over whether to leave the EU, now they are split over how to leave the EU, it is a farce. Personally, I would like to see a scenario where the cards were laid on the table in front of the British public, showing what aspects of the Leave campaign can be achieved in the real world and then taking another look at where we are heading.
£350 million a week for NHS: Can’t have it
Immigration: Strong economy demands it
If a reverse of the vote or another referendum is impossible, Labour have to come up with a unified exit plan and if they do, it will be a vote catcher, as the Tories will be forever divided as long as people like Jacob Rees-Mogg are in the party.
Whatever the deal with Europe is, it won’t be popular as there is no popular answer, but the only way forward that I can see, unless I am missing a trick, is to have continued freedom of movement as a member of the common market.
Defence and World Affairs
To abandon Trident and start the process of unilateral disarmament may be the desire of the idealist but if that is implemented as policy, Labour can kiss goodbye to a return to Government. Most sensible people would love to see the eradication of nuclear missiles as a deterrent, but only as progressive multi-lateral agreement.
The electorate is sick of seeing death and carnage in the Middle-East so the opportunity of a policy of ‘Jaw, Jaw, not War, War’ is definitely palatable but a campaign of unilateral disarmament isn’t, at least not in the foreseeable future.
There is perceived weakness in the Labour party when it comes to defence, so it is vital that they have a defence minister who is seen as a strong orator who can stand up to people like Putin rather than shriek when he enters the room. Fail to show a committed attitude to defence and Labour will fail to govern.
Reaching out to the Centre Ground
If there is one thing I don’t understand about the more Left-wing activists in the Labour party, it is their self-righteous hatred of everyone who doesn’t fully subscribe to their ideology, including floating voters who may have voted Conservative in the past and those in their own party with centrists views.
If these people want to continue ridiculing, abusing and ignoring opinion, they are no better than than right-wing Tories who just seem to shout a lot without any substance. If Labour spend their days agreeing only with themselves and not listening to others, they may as well condemn themselves to a future as a marginalised protest party.
The supposed left wing of the party need to extend a hand of friendship to the centrists and equally, the centrists need to accept it rather than bleating on about the previous success under New Labour that is now consigned to the history books.
Anti-Semitism and Internal Harassment
I find it hard to get my head around the allegation that the Labour Party is rife with anti-semitism. I may be wrong but I am certain this must stem from Israel’s campaign against Palestinians which has been described by many as carrying the same values as South African apartheid?
That is not anti-Jewish, it is anti the domestic policy of Binyamin Netanyahu against Palestinians….I think?
That is not to say this type of thing has not happened before, with Oswald Moseley evolving from a hard left campaigner of nationalisation in the Labour Party into the leader of the BUF (The Blackshirts). There is a history of left turning fascist as well as right, which I find fascinating in a morbid kind of way. Far right does tend to end up in the same place as far left.
If fellow members in a party are threatened with violence for not towing the line of the leadership, you are erring towards dictatorship, so both the issues with anti-semitism and harassment need clearing up quickly as there is nothing uglier in politics than that, as history tells us.
Unless you are an aristocrat, a media baron or any kind of plutocrat, the fundamentals of the Labour Party are hard to dispute. Education and health free at the point of delivery and a welfare state system that you pay for in good times and benefit from in bad.
Individualism and opportunism fed by loosening of banking regulations put an end to all that and it became a start in working life for most of brought up in the 80’s that meant self-employment or working in industries where if your back was turned for five minutes, you would need a surgeon to pull out all the knives. I have been there, it is awful going on holiday knowing that a colleague will be doing you a disservice whilst you sunbathe.
The problem that has evolved from aggressive capitalism and privatisation is that greed took over to an extent that power was available at a price, with all the influence coming from those 1% who own 90% of the wealth. How did it get to a point where corruption and biblical fraud in the financial sector could only be solved by rewarding them for their losses?
That’s the problem with privatisation and unregulated lending; there is always a group who will use it to its extreme and ruin everything.
Cooperation and collaboration are what made the human race succesful, not individualism and selfishness. The modern epidemic of loneliness and suicide in men stems from the fact that that are working against the instincts of collaboration and finding themselves lost and lonely as retirement approaches and they realise they have no friends because the brutality of their environment didn’t allow it.
Labour, if they are to succeed again, have to reach out to the working people who earn between £30-£100k a year and convince them that they will no longer carry the burden of tax evaders. They need to know that the money the exchequer will generate to secure the NHS and free education will come from the billions of lost revenue stashed away from the UK by the likes of Phillip Green. It is not just a few quid, it is billions, one Phillip green transaction alone, cost the revenue £250 million in lost corporation tax.
The debt of GDP in Britain is now 90%, if the financial sector is allowed to carry on and repeat 2008 and get away with it, this time, there won’t be anything left.
It won’t be easy, because the billionaire media tycoons like Murdoch and Dacre won’t let go without a fight, neither will Google, Starbucks and Amazon.
However, the pitchforks will come sooner or later and surely it is better sooner before for it is all too late.