The Daily Mail of the left

Submitted by AWL on 10 October, 2018 - 8:51 Author: Andrew Coates
Morning Star front page

[The French daily] Le Monde recently published a long article on what they call the “anti-immigrant/anti-migrant” left”: a “left” in favour of national sovereignty and closing borders.

The French daily cites the German Aufstehen movement of Sahra Wagenknecht, the “ambiguities” of Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s La France Insoumise, and Danish Labour and ‘populist’ left forces.

Lo and behold the Morning Star, Britain’s leading organ of the pro-Brexit left, has just published this (in the Saturday/Sunday print edition):

Title: “Time to get tough with the EU and our own anti-democrats”.

Blurb: “The benefits of being free of the EU neoliberal restrictions far outweigh anything else, writes Jacqui Johnson.”

Article: “What do we do when we are free of the membership fee and from the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice? Any of these things is complex, open to offers and counter-offers, stand-offs and compromises, but none overrides the ending of our EU membership.”

Johnson then proclaims, as a very prominent “benefit”:

“Leaving means freedom to control our own borders. Immigration policy can be part of a comprehensive employment plan based on equal rights for all who live and work here.

“The benefits of being free of all of these neoliberal restrictions on our economic prospects far outweigh anything else. Rebuilding and transforming Britain does not depend on trading arrangements, it depends on investment in our people to produce and transform society. You can’t trade if you can’t produce.”

The anti-migrant writer of this article, Jacqui Johnson, is former president of NATFHE, now UCU.

She is, by no coincidence at all, linked to the notorious “Trade Unionists Against the EU” which received funds from far-right millionaire Arron Banks.

At this year’s TUC fringe we find Johnson appearing again at this meeting:

“Embrace Brexit — rebuild and transform Britain.

“Brexit offers opportunities we never had while members of the EU. This is now being recognised by almost everyone, even the Guardian. Jeremy Corbyn said, ‘the next Labour government will … [take] advantage of new freedoms outside of the EU to allow government to intervene to protect our industrial base’. The speakers will explore the opportunities offered by Brexit and discuss how the trade union movement can take part in this most exciting phase in the history of our country. Contributions from the floor will be welcome.

“Speakers: Mick Whelan (General Secretary, ASLEF), Sarah Wooley (BFAWU), Kelvin Hopkins (MP), Professor Costas Lapavitsas (author of Left Case Against the European Union)

“Chair: Jacqui Johnson (former President NATFHE/UCU)”

Among her further comments we find this:

“It is no accident either that one of the most virulent asset-strippers of Greece, former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis, manages to drape himself in ‘left-wing’ colours . He wants to stay in the EU, “but not this EU’)”.

“It’s no accident”...

How that hackneyed phrase reminds one of the Stalinist origins of these horrible, nationalist arguments, promoted by the Daily Mail of the left, the Morning Star.

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