Labour Party

Johnson's Brexit: Thatcher reloaded

Published on: Wed, 04/12/2019 - 18:38

On 3 December Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab squirmed when asked why he’d advocated that the NHS should follow the model of Germany, where “two thirds of German hospitals are run privately or not-for-profit”.

It was “a snippet from a pamphlet written a long time ago [it was 2011!], but I can tell you categorically I’ve never advocated privatisation of the NHS.”

He was, he protested, only one of five authors. The other four are all core members of the Johnson team: Trade Secretary Liz Truss, business minister Kwasi Kwarteng, Home Secretary Priti Patel, and junior minister Chris Skidmore.


After 12 December, what?

Published on: Wed, 04/12/2019 - 18:36

If Labour wins a majority government, some activists will think or semi-think “job done”.

There will be a feeling we have navigated deadly rapids to a place of a safety. But in fact the struggle will likely intensify, and become harder.

Labour’s manifesto only moderate higher taxes on the best-off, and nationalisation with compensation of selected sectors, not a democratic seizure of the productive wealth currently held by the plutocrats. But we should not assume Labour’s manifesto will be implemented easily.

There will be many Labour MPs and leading party figures hesitant about or hostile to

A mess on antisemitism

Published on: Wed, 04/12/2019 - 17:55

Sacha Ismail

On ITV’s This Morning, 3 December, Jeremy Corbyn finally apologised for antisemitism in the Labour Party, after a week in which he had resisted calls to do so following Orthodox chief rabbi’s Ephraim Mirvis’s statements.

Politically, the delay signals uncertainty at best.

Worse, in the 26 November interview with Andrew Neil where he first refused to apologise, Corbyn was asked repeatedly whether the phrase “Rothschild Zionists run Israel and world governments”, tweeted by a Labour council candidate in Liverpool, is antisemitic. (Apparently the tweeter remains a candidate, for now, after his

Slates in the Momentum election

Published on: Wed, 04/12/2019 - 17:03

Katy Dollar

Momentum, the Labour left organisation set up by people from the Jeremy Corbyn leadership campaign in 2015, will be running elections for its National Coordinating Group (NCG) in early 2020.

Momentum shut down almost all its internal structures in early 2017, and since then has been pretty much run by electronic communications “trickling down” from its office. It has focused heavily on mobilising people for internal Labour Party elections and the general elections in 2017 and this year, rather than creating space for political debate.

However, it still claims 40,000 signed-up members, and some

No backlash in PCS

Published on: Wed, 04/12/2019 - 15:44

John Moloney

Our intervention in this election is unprecedented in the history of PCS. In previous elections, the union has run a neutral campaign called “make your vote count”.

Some in the union were worried that our stance would provoke a negative response from members, and maybe even resignations from people who wanted the union to remain strictly apolitical, but this hasn’t materialised.

The previous line proceeded from the premise that all parties were objectively the same, and our job was simply to provide members with information about their various policies, especially those affecting the civil

Labour should tell the truth on Brexit

Published on: Fri, 29/11/2019 - 09:37

Martin Thomas

If you want to convince people, you have to argue what you believe to be true, and be seen to be convinced yourself.

If your message is: "Tell us what you want to hear, and we'll play it back to you", you will be seen to be shifty and unreliable. And rightly so.

Labour-aligned people who have back Leave should be treated with respect, and given honest arguments. They know that Labour has been pushed, bit by bit - by steady rank-and-file pressure on the reluctant leadership - into a de facto Remain position. Labour opposes the actual deals negotiated with the EU and supports a referendum which

Labour: the manifesto, the movement, and us

Published on: Wed, 27/11/2019 - 20:16

Sacha Ismail

What Labour's 2019 manifesto promises is, in itself, moderate. But the rich and owners of capital did not get where they are by being generous and easy. They got there by being the most ruthless in pursuit of greed, exploitation, trampling down and squeezing the working class.

After decades of almost everything their own way, they are in no mood to concede. They will fight, aggressively and effectively.

The resistance of capital to a Labour government with this manifesto, and the risk of capitulation or retreat, can be overcome only by a strong and militant labour movement.

Despite its gaps on

What if a hung parliament?

Published on: Wed, 27/11/2019 - 19:56


On 25 November Jeremy Corbyn reiterated his opposition to a coalition with the Lib Dems if the Tories lose the election but Labour does not win a majority.

He did not respond to a question about coalitions versus forming a minority government. Mostly Labour’s leaders have rightly said they oppose a coalition and that, if Labour comes out from 12 December ahead of the Tories but short of a majority, they will go for a minority government. The Lib Dems have gone even further and said they will not vote to make Corbyn prime minister, let alone join a coalition.

However, on 19 November the

The Rabbi and the real issue

Published on: Wed, 27/11/2019 - 19:37

Daniel Randall

Jewish identity and history is a profoundly important aspect of my life. But I’m not a communalist. I think the idea of a unitary interest for ethnic groups is dangerous, and I think official community leaderships, especially in faith groups, are basically reactionary.

An anti-communalist, secularist, anti-clerical critique of the role in Jewish life, and in social and political life in general, of people like the Chief Rabbi has been developed by Jewish radicals over many years, finding perhaps its most exuberant expression in the work of people like Benjamin Feigenbaum. Equivalent critiques

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