Socialist found in Labour party

Shock horror. Apparently a socialist has managed to conceal himself within the Labour Party. He kept himself unobserved by being a member of the party and an MP for the last 32 years.

He has now revealed himself to the wider world by standing for election as Labour leader and daring to show he has support. He has some shocking views according to his Blairite or “mainstream Labour ” critics. They worry because  he opposed the Iraq war and opposes other Middle Eastern military interventions, and does sometimes criticise the EU. He dares to point out that the extreme austerity policy in Greece has done substantial economic and social damage.

I hasten to add that I would not wish to see his UK economic policies implemented, and do not agree with all his views on foreign affairs but then I am not a socialist.

Labour should have a good debate between the four candidates and decide who they like best. That will define what they want to offer the public in the next general election. It is strange to see some of them complaining already that one of the candidates is not allowed to be poplar and maybe his popularity invalidates the electoral process or the electoral list. Surely it is up to the candidates who disagree with Mr Corbyn to enrol people and gain the support of people who are members by showing why their vision of the future is better for the UK.

Some of the dafter commentary says the leadership election shows Labour is split. The whole point of a leadership election is to allow the different strands of opinion and support within a major party to run their views and seek to show support for them. Labour started all this ridiculous briefing that a party cannot govern if it contains different opinions and groups. It is the ultimate irony to see this myth come back to haunt them when they are having an entirely proper leadership election. The Wet /dry conflict under Mrs Thatcher during Conservative government and the big Blair/Brown row under labour always showed it was nonsense to claim split parties cannot govern.

 

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76 Comments

  1. RB
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:06 am | Permalink

    This is driven by the BBC who insist Labour and Torys must look identical, PMQs should be abandoned on the grounds its offensive and rude while simultaneously Cameron makes war on sectarianism (discernment). The end goal is obviously we all become unthinking borg, all of one mind, subdued by consumerism.

    • A different Simon
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      Has anybody noticed that the establishment has quietly faced down UKIP and the fledgling resistance movement ?

      – UKIP is now officially far right wing and extremist .

      – Questioning the benefits of immigration is now officially a sign of bigotry .

      The above assertions are never challenged . Being heard questioning them in the work place , whether public sector or private is career suicide and may soon become a crime like in Sweden .

      The establishment has won .

      • libertarian
        Posted July 29, 2015 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

        A different Simon

        Thats not entirely true, I just been listening to a very interesting phone in on BBC Radio 2 Jeremy Vine show which started by asking what sign should we put up at Dover to deter immigrants.

        I’m about to do a radio programme at 2pm for BBC discussing the implications of illegal immigration via the channel tunnel when more than 1500 people invaded the tunnel from the French side last night and what we must do to stop it.

    • Kenneth
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      Agree.

      The BBC has forced most politicians into a narrow left wing mindset.

      The BBC has made extreme policies such as ‘equality’ and absurdly high taxes appear to be mainstream.

      We now have the madness of a Conservative government passing wage control laws.

      The UK has been groomed into extremism by the BBC.

      Luckily, the support for the likes of Mr Farage and Mr Corbyn shows that not everyone is affected by this propaganda.

      • RB
        Posted July 29, 2015 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

        That is exactly right, the BBC have shaped politics and forced everyone on the Left. If you want to know the future just observe the BBC social conditioning, at the moment they are pushing the idea people do not like conflict and PMQs is precisely what has to go next, then after that it will be people do not like opposing political parties as its confrontational and people are sometimes rude to each other. What is worse is people are lapping it up. We have had Question Time after Question Time with rigged audiences all effectively demanding polite consensus (a one party State).

    • zorro
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

      Guard: Don’t fight it son. Confess quickly! If you hold out too long you could jeopardize your credit rating.

      It reminds me a bit of the film ‘Brazil’ from 1985 where the powers that be sustain their dictatorship by threatening people with their credit rating. That’s the paucity of political polemic these days…….

      Red Tory/Blue Labour – just one amorphous me-co supporting mush!

      zorro

      • zorro
        Posted July 28, 2015 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

        Neo con supporting mush I meant

    • Hefner
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

      Oh, come on! Do you think people are so daft. Far from all people in this country listen or watch the BBC. Don’t you think you are a bit of a Borg yourself by peddling this type of nonsense?
      If you really think that the BBC is so powerful, how do you consider the press, from the Guardian to the Daily Telegraph/Daily Mail/Sun?

  2. DaveM
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:26 am | Permalink

    I heard a vicious rumour that there were one or two Tories in the Conservative Party. I had a good look at the Cabinet though, and I can confirm it is just a rumour.

    • Lifelogich
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 11:42 am | Permalink

      Indeed, I too am rather more concerned with the socialists running the Tory party particularly in light of the recent essentially socialist budget. More and more tax borrow and waste and more and more endless regulation and tax complexity. The opposite of what is needed.

      Courts, I see today, now think they should decide what happens to your estate after you die and not you through your will. Should be a very nice little earner for the legal “profession” and very damaging to nearly everyone else. What law gave the Judges those powers I wonder? Or did they just invent it to suit themselves?

    • APL
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

      DaveM: “I heard a vicious rumour that there were one or two Tories in the Conservative Party.”

      Ha ha ha! A gross exaggeration.

  3. The Prangwizard
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    I understand there is a report of some stagnation in the labour market. It would not surprise me that this is caused in part by socialist theory put into practice through state control of wages – minimum wage and now a ‘Living Wage’ – with the Conservative party and government.

    As I have written before this leads to laziness all round, and much frustration among individuals no doubt – there’s not much point in moving jobs if most jobs pay the minimum wage after all. Employers can easily use it as an excuse to keep wages down.

    And rather than seek less state intervention when things don’t quite work out we get demand for more controls. It applies in all state interventions – system not working very well, lets have more controls then, through regulators and regulation. Just how free is the free market? There are too many examples to be listed here.

    • Iain Gill
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 9:13 am | Permalink

      Its also caused by the immigration situation, the way intra company transfer visas are uncapped and out of control, the way indefinite leave to remain here is so easy to obtain, the open doors to EU passport holders, the way we allow our best intellectual property to be moved to lower cost base economies to undercut us, our extreme anti-pollution regime which makes it far too expensive to run production here, the cost of our power, the high cost of supporting our state sector.

    • Hefner
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

      Prang-wheez-hard, I hope you realise that the minimum wage (or however living it is called) has not yet been increased. You really have a gift of foresight to be able to link whatever now happens in the labour market to what might/should possibly happen in April 2016.

    • libertarian
      Posted July 29, 2015 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      Prang wizard

      Nope the Labour market is STILL growing, 2 million new jobs in last 18 months 1.7 million still to come. Unemployment falling month on month now the second lowest to Germany in Europe. The living wage rules haven’t been implemented yet & don’t come into full force until 2020, The NMW doesn’t go up again until October this year

      Iain Gill

      27,000 intra company visas issued in total. You clearly either lost your job to one, or the boss you hate is from overseas. There are 31 million people in work, there are 750,000 unfilled job vacancies i.e. less than 0.1% of the workforce….

  4. Dame Rita Webb
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    Eh and what about Dave the crypto socialist? He cannot stop deficit spending. He cannot stop entangling businesses with things like NEST pensions. While he is just itching to get stuck into “a right to protect war” in Syria so the UK can fulfil its internationalist duties.

  5. eeyore
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    As Labour leader, Mr Corbyn would be sworn of the Privy Council and therefore trusted with state secrets. His record is one of independent judgement carried sometimes to the point of perversity. HMG does not comment on security. Can the rest of us be confident he is a good risk?

    • acorn
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 11:08 am | Permalink

      Actually, he would abolish the Privy Council. That is if he got into leadership, he would bring back the “Commonwealth of Britain Bill”, that he and Tony Benn launched back in the nineties.

      Some may remember, the Bill contained a requirement for a devolved parliament for England, along with Scotland and Wales! (I think jurisdiction over Northern Ireland was to be ended by the Bill.)

      It would certainly be a bit of fun in 2020. Particularly if a Corbyn Labour party got itself educated in Modern Monetary Theory. That is, actually found out how a fiat currency system works and how you can use it to maximise resources. The thing is; will it be the Pound or the Euro, both currently misunderstood by mainstream politicians and the media.

  6. Richard1
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:45 am | Permalink

    It will be remarkable if Labour elect a dinosaur like Mr Corbyn. He believes in wide scale nationalisation, govt intervention at every turn, imposing the highest taxes in the free world and regards terrorist groups such as Hamas and Hizbollah as his ‘friends’. It will be back to the 70s and early 80s for Labour, and reminds me of what I thought was one of the great benefits of the EEC at that time – it would have acted as a restraint on the quasi-soviet socialism of the Labour Party had it ever got into office.

  7. JoeSoap
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    Well you can see why he is popular. People daft enough to think Blair was a “man of the people” got what they deserved and would have done so with Miliband. At least Corbyn genuinely believes in what he espouses. He would be the first major party leader to radically change the political system, and it’s crying out for that.

    • A different Simon
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 10:33 am | Permalink

      Corbyn seems normal but has never done a proper days work in his life .

      His upbringing sounds relatively privileged ; his family evidently had enough financial security for him to go away for a couple of years of voluntary service overseas .

      If he can hasten Cameron’s departure and make way for normal David Davis who has excelled in business rather than establishment Boris or treasonous Mrs May then I’m all for it .

    • Hefner
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

      JoeSoap, Are you believing in what you write? Haven’t you seen what the EU authorities have done to Tsipras? Do you really think that if Corbyn were to be chosen as next Labour leader and be subsequently elected Prime Minister (two huge ifs), there would not be some “pressures” on him. Just think what happened to Edward VIII.

  8. fedupsoutherner
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    One advantage of the whole mess is that Labour are less likely to be elected in the future giving the Conservative a better chance of staying in and getting things done. Much as I like the fact that Corben says what he thinks and there is less spin I am concerned about his left wing views and the effect that would have on the country. Another concern though involves Scotland. Scotland needs an alternative to the SNP and at the moment none is available because of their senseless hatred of the Conservatives. Scotland is a one party state and will be for along time.

    • Vanessa
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      If you can trust the Conservatives to be “conservative”. Some say that the latest budget is one of the most leftist socialist budgets ever by a Conservative Chancellor. Since when did Conservatives dictate what companies should pay their employees ? Fair ?

    • Hefner
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

      SNP, one party state: yes, could that be thanks to the beautifully “democratic” FPTP?

  9. alan jutson
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    The huge mistake (another by Miliband) was in allowing new members (who have voting rights) to be able to join, after the nomination closing date.

    Given the above, of course you will get some candidate support from a whole range of so called new found £3.00 Labour supporters.

    Mr Corbyn is a breath of fresh air, (in many ways like Mr Farage, other than the policies) in that he actually answers questions put to him, is not afraid to say what he thinks, and uses simple uncomplicated language to get his views across.

    Labour needs to have a sensible debate about its future direction.
    Indeed I think the Conservatives could do with one as well (but perhaps in house) even though they won the general election, due mainly because of the appalling opposition at the time.
    The only Party which seems united at the moment is the SNP !

    Funny old World Politics.

    • A different Simon
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 10:25 am | Permalink

      In an effort to be united the SNP go through a formal process of agreeing their policy among them all before announcing it .

      Conservative and Labour on the otherhand are very much controlled by dictatorial executives .

    • alte fritz
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

      And Labour used to call itself a broad church.

  10. Bob
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Has David Cameron finally realised that money from our foreign aid budget is finding it’s way back to London to fuel the property price surge?

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-33684098

  11. Ian wragg
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    There’s no need for a Labour Party now CMD and Gideon are in office. Tax borrow and waste being order of the day. Blind deference to Brussels and continuing to Balkanise England like Prescott. Whats not to like.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted July 29, 2015 at 6:37 am | Permalink

      Indeed it is indeed essentially just New Labour in drag.

  12. Douglas Carter
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    It seems lost on three of the Leadership candidates, and many observers of the matter (including those senior Labour figures who have chosen to make observations) that Mr. Corbyn has found common cause with a very significant part of the wider Party membership. In short, his candidacy is that of (what seems to be) the actual grassroots membership. I’ve never voted Labour, and I wouldn’t give a Labour Party under Corbyn a single second of consideration, to qualify.

    But these self-same observers also miss something very considerably bigger – that Blair\Mandelson and New Labour made any future notion of ‘modernisation’ or reform so toxic to the membership that the barricades to Labour becoming a proper organised electoral force have become unbreachable. The alleged contemporary modernisers – Umanna, Hunt, even Kendall – don’t seem to have any awareness of the actual party they are members of. They seem to want to lead a different party, and resent (even openly) the curious militant rabble who appear impervious to reason.

    To me, this genuinely has the feeling of Journey’s End for Labour. Rather than a spectacular renaissance as per the mid-90s, I think far more likely is a Scotland-style collapse due to the relentless shrinkage of their core votership. Their safe seats beginning more to represent isolated islands of tribal voting rather than a national movement. Their vanishing membership resembling a pairing of the Lost Tribe of Coronation Street, forever frozen in 1964; and the ageing survivors of the Sloan Ranger set from 1988. I suspect yesterday’s Utopia will always prove too seductive for them to part with.

    • libertarian
      Posted July 29, 2015 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

      Douglas Carter

      Maybe but the vanishingly small number of grassroots members of the Labour Party don’t elect governments only party leaders. Corbyn wouldn’t last a week as leader of the Labour Party. He would be torn to shreds

  13. Rob K
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    Jeremy Corbyn is a breath of fresh air. For far too long our politics has been devoid of true ideas, so some polarisation of opinion should be welcome. Like JR, I would not like to see Mr Corbyn’s ideas implemented in government, but a properly socialist voice would be a much more authentic way to challenge the current government’s orthodoxy than the Blair-lite mush that the other Labour leadership candidates are promoting.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

      I too tend to prefer a proper socialists rather than the usual fake ones. People who garner votes by augmenting envy and hatred at every turn. While so often really aspiring to send their children to private schools and then get a place in the House of Lords (while fiddling their expenses along the way).

    • Lifelogic
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      At least with the real left (either intellectual but totally misguided or just the usual rather dim ones) you can see them for what they are.

      Everyone could at least see how bonkers and unworkable Corbyn’s, Foot’s, Benn’s, Lord Healey (98% income tax was it), Heath and Lord Kinnock’s economic policies are (or were). It is rather funny watching the battle in the Labour party though.

      Labour is a party largely for the state sector unions, the work shy, the envious, hypocrites and chip on the shoulder “it’s just not fair” people.

      Just get over it, life was never was fair and never will be – just get on with it.

    • libertarian
      Posted July 29, 2015 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

      Rob K

      If you think Corbyn is a breath of fresh air then either you are very young or you were comatose during the 1970’s when every single one of his policies was implemented by Labour and almost completely destroyed this country.

  14. Tom William
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    Surely the main argument about the validity of an election which might elect Corbyn is that his supporters consist of a large number of people who, until his name was announced, were not Labour Party members. They are far to the left of the Labour Party and have joined because they want to destroy it and replace it with their policies.

    This is “Entryism” and is not democratic. Corbyn is as democratic as Trotsky.

    • Hefner
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

      “Entryism” from Daily Telegraph readers?

    • scottspeig
      Posted July 29, 2015 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

      While this sounds good, it is not true – it is something along the lines of 250,000 members (who were fully signed up before nominations) vs 60,000 new members (a lot from the unions, and not guaranteed to vote Corbyn).

      From my experience of family members, they would agree with Corbyn quicker than Blair. Plus, Corbyn sounds convincing. Probably because he actually believes in it rather than spouting soundbites that they think will win power!

  15. ChrisS
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    Surely the mistake Labour makes is allowing the general membership and unions a significant role in electing the leader ?

    The Leader and potential Prime Minister has to command the respect and support of MPs and, as we saw what happened with Brown and then Miliband E when he or she doesn’t.

    Miliband made things even worse by selling votes on the open market for £3 a head !

    Then we have the choice on offer which, even following on from Miliband is an insult to the electorate. Ms Kendall is totally out of her depth and Mr Burnham and Mrs Balls are too weak and scared to take on Corbyn. Because they don’t want to upset his supporters, all they are doing is allowing him to set the agenda !

    They are reaping what he has sewn and good luck to them !

  16. petermartin2001
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Whatever our different political opinions I would say that we all might agree that there should be as much freedom of choice at election time. We can choose from a socialist Labour Party as advocated by Jeremy Corbyn, a centrist Lib Dem or a right leaning Tory or UKIP parties.

    What’s wrong with that?

    I’m pretty sure we need to have a few transfers. There’s Lib Dems in the Labour Party, and there’s Lib Dems in the Tory Party too. They really should move into their natural party. What’s their problem? They are always claiming that elections are won from the centre ground. The Lib Dems are in the centre ground. If they are right the Lib Dems should be the natural party of government.

    Reply On dear energy, government spending and tax the Lib Dems are well to the left

    • forthurst
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

      Peter, you are unlikely to get a realignment of politics with our existing electoral system. I suspect that JR is closer to Douglas Carswell than CMD on many issues, but this is not relevent under fptp.

      Reply to reply: Cheap energy requires polluting the atmosphere with toxic CO2; Amber Rudd is on the case. Jeremy Corbyn’s brother is a notorious Climate Change Denier who purports to predict the weather by observing terrestrial and extra-terrestrial phenomena and who might be afforded more opportunities to put his dangerous views in a public arena should his brother be elected.

      • Ted Mombiot
        Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

        CO2 is not toxic
        Simple scientific fact.

        • petermartin2001
          Posted July 29, 2015 at 9:28 am | Permalink

          Ted,

          I would agree that “toxic” is probably not the right word. CO2 is an important GH gas and if there were no CO2 in the atmosphere the whole of the European continent would be virtually uninhabitable due to the extreme cold. The GH effect would virtually disappear leading to a global temperature drop of about 33 degC.

          But, on the other hand, we can have too much of a good thing. Fortunately the warming due to an increase in CO2 levels isn’t linear. Otherwise we really would be in trouble! A doubling is expected to increase temperatures by about 3 degC. This may seem attractive but it’s still a serious rise in temperature.

          The warm period before the last ice age, the Eemian period, was just 1.5 deg warmer than now. Sea levels were 6 mteres higher though. There could be a lot of cheap properties in London if we see that again!

          • Edward2
            Posted July 29, 2015 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

            Well I agree that too much of anything can be bad.
            But since 2000 there has been further increases in CO2 but no rise in temperatures.
            This conflicts with the central pillar of the theory.

            Also looking at the data the relationship between temperature rises and CO2 rises seems too sensitive to my maths.
            It seems me that the correlation is claimed to be about twice as sensitive as current data is showing so claims of several degrees of future rise in temperatures seems unlikely.

          • forthurst
            Posted July 29, 2015 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

            “Fortunately the warming due to an increase in CO2 levels isn’t linear.”

            I think, fortunately, that it is linear, in the form of a horizontal straight line, since there is no evidence that CO2 has a significant effect on climate; I suggest you look at Piers Corbyn’s website WeatherAction where you will note he has rather more scientific qualifications or understanding of climate than you do.

          • Hefner
            Posted July 29, 2015 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

            It is just unfortunate that Piers Corbyn is so busy with his WeatherAction business that he stopped doing any scientific work apart from his 2005 paper.

            The world has been expecting some follow-up work, specially in terms of World Meteorological Organization verifications of his forecasts. Unfortunately, apart from what is said on his website, no proof of his multiple successes is available, nor any mention of his failures.

          • petermartin2001
            Posted July 30, 2015 at 10:12 am | Permalink

            there is no evidence that CO2 has a significant effect on climate …

            The GH effect has been known since the 19th century starting with arguments by Joseph Fourier in 1824. It’s been accepted since at least the middle of the 19th century that CO2 is the major non-condensing Greenhouse gas. It’ s semi opaque to IR radiation and reduces the heat loss to space from the Earth. If the temperature of the Earth is measured from space by its Infra Red emissions in the same way as an infra red camera works by measuring the heat radiation, the temperature is about 30 deg less than is measured on earth.

            We notice this when make temperature measurements on Earth they fall as we rise in altitude until a height of about 10000 metres, then they start to rise again.

        • Margaret Brandreth-J
          Posted July 29, 2015 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

          Pedantry….glucose isn’t toxic in itself , but an ability to adequately utilise it physiologically has toxic-like side effects. Don’t apologise.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted July 29, 2015 at 6:42 am | Permalink

        Toxic CO2 what on earth are you on about? C02 is a harmless odourless gas that is an essential food for plants, seaweed and trees and is breathed out by us with every breath we make.

        Perhaps you are confusing it with carbon monoxide?

        • forthurst
          Posted July 29, 2015 at 9:02 am | Permalink

          I had assumed that the use of the word ‘toxic’ would have been sufficient to indicate the use of irony; apologies if that was not clear.

      • petermartin2001
        Posted July 29, 2015 at 9:36 am | Permalink

        Cheap energy requires polluting the atmosphere with toxic CO2

        Not if its generated by nuclear power. If there’s one area that needs international co-operation its the development of a a safe fourth generation reactor that can be built anwhere. We also need portable reactors which can be delivered by ship to less developed countries and then returned for replenishment and servicing at regular intervals.

        • Hefner
          Posted July 29, 2015 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

          This development of small-scale reactors is happening, but quite slowly and it might still take 15 years for them to be readily (and safely) available.
          Then, maybe, these 15 years will also give a solution to the waste problem.

    • petermartin2001
      Posted July 29, 2015 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

      On dear energy, government spending and tax the Lib Dems are well to the left

      There’s no reason that dear energy should be considered a “left” policy. The scientific advice that we need to reduce CO2 emissions shouldn’t be politicised this way. The use of the market to reduce those emissions by Carbon pricing is something the right should agree to also.

      Neither is the difference between what government receives in taxation revenue and its spending levels a straightforward left or right issue, once we understand that this has to equal the ££ saved in the domestic economy plus the amount saved by our overseas suppliers who do not wish to spend the ££ they earn form their sales to the UK.

      But of course the size of government, the nature of the spending, the nature of the taxation are rightly regarded as political matters.

      Reply Global warming theory is very clearly a preoccupation if the left whilst having sufficient cheap energy to combat poverty and de industrialisation a preoccupation of the right in the UK. That’s how it is.

  17. agricola
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    As you would seem to say, all parties are broad churches from which a consensus for leadership eventually emerges. Often for all the wrong reasons.

    I tend to question the need for parties, preferring all MPs to be independent. Chosen by their constituents as likely to represent their views, but not necessarily slavishly.

    The resultant MPs can then choose who they wish to lead them and who might be competent as a Chancellor or Foreign minister. We might then get support for ideas backed by sound logic rather than poor ideas backed by blind obedience to a party.

    I wish the Labour party well in their deliberations and hope that they realise that they need to produce a product that they can sell to the electorate at large.

    • Cliff. Wokingham.
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

      I tend to agree and indeed, have argued for many years now that the party system is the biggest obstacle to democracy in this country.
      The problem has grown and become more acute with our current trend towards presidential style Prime Ministers.
      The whip system is a major problem, especially for young ambitious MPs who rely on the benevolence of their leader for promotion.

      I too feel candidates, if we stick to the constituency idea of representation, should be chosen on their own ideas and ability to get them across to the local public rather than, on the basis of a coloured rossette.
      The party machine can effectively block a candidate by deselection if they “step out of the party’s official line” and this must be anti democratic in my view. This is a problem because many people vote for the party rather than the person.

      Our host would still get my vote if he were a non party representitive because, on the whole, I believe in his politics which are far more Conservative than most at the party’s top table.

  18. Atlas
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    Cameron is just plain lucky he is faced with a collection of pygmies in the Labour Party – a re-run of the ’80s where Thatcher stayed in power because of a divided oppposition.

  19. Iain Gill
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    In my view it would be good if the labour (and Conservative) parties split into smaller parties. The Labour party and Conservatives are so far removed from what ordinary decent people think and believe in so many ways from immigration to speed cameras, to switching the street lighting off at night, to international “aid”, to our defence approach, to our approach to our workforce, to our schools and lack of choice in the citrizens hands, to the massive subsidies and state aid thrown around, to the way the public sector is run. The short simplistic soundbites of the main parties are far removed from the simple common sense people are screaming for. I hope the current political class get a kicking from somewhere anywhere.

  20. Mike Stallard
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    I have just been on three of the top Labour blogs. Not a squeak about the EU.
    In the new constitution
    http://www.eureferendum.com/documents/fundamentallaw.pdf
    the following things are planned for 2017:
    Anti-terrorism laws, the police, the army, foreign policy, extradition, ECHR, ECJ all under the firm control of the Commission which is, let me remind you, unelected and unaccountable and secret.
    European citizens allowed to vote in British Elections.
    And – most important of all – Associate Membership or “Pre Euro” status leading eventually to full membership of the Federal Democratic Republic of Europe, due in 2017 just as pour referendum is planned…

    PLEASE can someone tell the Daily Telegraph? Or the Guardian?

    • ChrisS
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

      This is a truly terrifying document !

      Just the introduction is enough to make most people vote No !

      Quote 1 below is just a continuation of the existing Brussels policy of ignoring the wishes of voters and bulldozing on regardless. In this case they are going to try to get through via treaty change what they know they cannot get through democratically :

      ” In the face of hostile public opinion, the national governments of its Member States fear to give the EU the powers and resources it needs. National parties and parliaments fail to embrace the European dimension of politics.

      So the European Union needs to assert itself. European challenges can be met
      only in a European way.”

      Quote 2 reveals the ultimate power grab. They say the commission will be the EU’s “democratic constitutional government.” Nothing could be further from the truth !

      “This proposal for a Fundamental Law of the European Union is a comprehensive
      revision of the Treaty of Lisbon (2007). Replacing the existing treaties, it takes a
      major step towards a federal union. It turns the European Commission into a democratic constitutional government in which the Commission drafts laws which are then enacted jointly by the Council, representing the states, and the European Parliament, representing the citizens.

      All the reforms proposed are aimed at strengthening the capacity of the EU to act.”

      This stuff is dynamite. No wonder Cameron wants the referendum before this lot lands on his desk !

  21. alan jutson
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Bob

    Perhaps Mr Cameron should realise that having a massive foreign Aid budget that is ring fenced and has to be spent up to the limit, is the real problem in the first place, as the incentive to just spend it without proper due process of what it is spent on seems to get forgotten.

    Foreign Aid is not just about sending out cash, it is about appropriate help, which is fit for purpose.

    The sooner Our Government learn this the better.

  22. Paul
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    I would love to see Jeremy Corbyn elected as Labour leader. His views are nowhere near as extreme as the media/Blairites would have you believe. He is real Labour, a man who actually believes in something and is in politics for the right reasons. Just look at his three opponents – all cardboard cut-outs. I’m not a Labour member or supporter but he is a breath of fresh air and would inject some life back into politics that it desperately needs. Imagine PMQs – Burnham/Cameron (no difference between them). Corbyn/Cameron – it might be worth watching.

    • Dame Rita Webb
      Posted July 28, 2015 at 11:09 am | Permalink

      There is a lot a hardline conservative like me has in common with him e.g. no more EU, no more war and no more money on Trident. Remember Cameron only won because he was up against a joke Labour candidate that managed to make him look credible as a PM. However there are enough things bubbling away in the international economy at the moment that could come into play and make 2007/8 look like a mini heart attack in comparison. This time its the big one with multiple organ failure. Dave, as everything from his past track record suggests, fails to control the situation and JC and Labour voted into government.

  23. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 9:18 am | Permalink

    Well Mr Corbyn uses lefty terms. It causes a fright to some up-jumped Labour MPs who call meat paste: Pate, bits of toast: Croutons and plonk: A cheeky little wine.

    Nationalisation/state control/government intervention has nothing to do with Socialism. If it had then an ancient Chinese Emperor thousands of years ago who nationalised his coalmines was a communist, somehow. And the US state of Pennsylvania is a Soviet republic for it owns the pubs within its boundaries and always has. Of course the state owned and controlled British Army, Navy and RAF should have a hammer and sickle on their caps using such flawed analysis.

    It would be refreshing if the Labour Party were to present a manifesto and candidate which its members approve on the basis they actually agree with his views. Instead its professional politicians would rather tell any lie, anything to get into power. As if the Middle Ground as they put it was the sacred text of some great British philosopher. Well the Middle Ground in politics is on shifting sands and to change your political clothes according to the fashion of the day is dishonest opportunism and the mindset of the sex industry. Come to think of it, such thinking is now the very essence of the Labour Party. They are anybody’s…

  24. Bert Young
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    I am not surprised that some responses have questioned whether there are “real Tories”in the Conservative Party . To come out and be counted is a test of genuine character and something to be proud of . So far I have seen little evidence of a co-ordinated campaign to say “No” to our membership of the EU , this , surely , ought to happen soon and it ought to come from the Conservatives .

    Our host has been a voiceful opponent of the EU and I suggest he now takes on the mantle of this role . It needs someone of his background and integrity to lead the case and , if necessary to defy the edicts that come from the leadership of his Party . Nigel Farage seems to have disappeared from the horizon and UKIP to have melted down ; Farage would not have been the right man to lead the case for many reasons anyway .

    I have no doubt that the BBC will continue to support the EU some way or another , this place of advantage needs to be neutralised . Equally voices that are biassed like the CBI need to be silenced by their own members because the smaller companies who are members have not been given any credibility so far . As for the Universities I am gob-smacked , as someone who is involved to some extent , all I can say is no-one consulted me !

  25. Know-Dice
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    Whilst I’m never going to vote for any of them, he comes across more straight forward and would do what he says rather than the screeching banshees…

  26. Kenneth
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    It’s an age old dilemma.

    A broad church delivers a large, more powerful grouping. However, it means that its members will often be at odds over the details.

    Labour/BBC took advantage of this by highlighting these differences in the Conservative Party. However the differences within the Labour Party were rarely reported and certainly not highlighted in the same way.

    The sad thing about this, apart from the obvious bias, is that when appearing on the media, politicians have been bland and evasive. Because people can video anything on their phones, this has now spread to public meetings as well, even when not being covered by the media.

    Politicians cannot win. They are either evasive or if they are frank, they are labelled as mavericks (or if they are Conservatives as freaks).

  27. Glenn Vaughan
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    Older readers may remember the science fiction series that was “The Twilight Zone” created and presented by the late Rod Serling.

    Fast forward to the Rose Garden at the White House in 2020 where U.S. President Donald Trump is shaking hands with British Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn.

    Even Rod Serling would throw away that storyline – wouldn’t he?

  28. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Certainly within your lifetime JR and that of Mr Corbyn it was the normal and indeed fully legal practice of pub beer to flow over the top of a previously used glass handed over the bar by a customer for a refill and that excess beer to flow directly back into the barrel in the cellar. Similarly for fish and chips to be served in folded old used newspapers brought in my local customers.

    Mr Corbyn would make a good Labour Leader and as good a Prime Minister as a Labour leader could be. The others have experiences but not enough bad experiences. etc ed

  29. Anonymous
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    “The Wet /dry conflict under Mrs Thatcher during Conservative government and the big Blair/Brown row under labour always showed it was nonsense to claim split parties cannot govern.”

    The poor state of the country they’ve left behind proves otherwise.

    Any idiot could have done it for a fraction of the price they charged.

  30. DaveM
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    I wrote the other day that JC came across as quite honest and likeable, and received a few replies which were in agreement. I also quite like the bloke who runs the local kebab takeaway but I don’t want him to run the country.

  31. Tad Davison
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    No names, no pack-drill, but I know a lot of Labour MPs who have deep concerns about the EU, because they have told me so, and they’re not just the usual suspects. They realise how damaging the EU is to ordinary people right across the European continent and beyond. With TTIP, they have also come to understand how powerful the corporations have become, and wish their power were not increased even more, rather, reduced to a more reasonable level.

    There was a time when Labour were opposed to the EU, and they were right to take that position. By then taking the pro-EU position, they found they were out of step with public opinion and a lot of the blue-collar vote went elsewhere. They had effectively alienated great swathes of their core supporters, just as their weak position towards crime alienated lots of people.

    It is time Labour left behind the trendy Notting Hill liberals who are so out of touch with reality. Fancy theories that don’t work in practise, and again, I know a number of Labour MPs who agree with that statement, so they’re not all bad, just the headcases.

    I eagerly await the conversion of the rest, and for them to come back down to planet Earth, and re-connect with ordinary working people.

    Tad Davison

    Cambridge

  32. Richard1
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    Off topic but I note the German govt has said it is prepared to contemplate a eurozone finance minister with his / her own budget and extra tax raising powers.

  33. Margaret Brandreth-J
    Posted July 28, 2015 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    Do you deny the existence of conservative socialism , which is where I probably fall; in fact it is something which is practiced wherever you put a label to describe other.
    I have lived my life as an individual and it has been hard and not something I would have wished for.I would have liked support,but all I have had is negative competition , so have had to fight.It certainly has made me a survivor,but I would not wish the same on everybody. I have had the luck to have the dynamism to give me that’ something inside so strong’ but nothing makes you fight harder than being a mother fighting for your children.I welcome Jeremy and hope he does well.

  34. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted July 29, 2015 at 12:12 am | Permalink

    By the same logic, a challenge to Mr Cameron’s leadership this Autumn, on the grounds that he is not asking for sufficient repatriation of powers in his negotiations with the EU, would be entirely legitimate. Why do you think he is keeping the negotiations secret?

    Mr Cameron has been a strong man in the grip of many wrong ideas – the Gay Marriage Act, the attempt at ‘reforming’ the House of Lords (if there are too many peers, ask Her Majesty to sack some of the Labour and Liberal peers, starting with Lord Kinnock), uncritical retention of the Barnett formula etc. He clearly makes policy on the hoof and thinks he is right all the time.

    Your colleague Dominic Raab has suggested slimming the State by reducing the number of Ministries to 11. Good. That will give an opportunity, when the number of MPs is reduced from 650 to 600, to reduce the size of the government payroll vote by 50, thus retaining the same back bench input to parliament.

    The Conservative Party has always been authoritarian in nature, with hero worship of the leader. It would serve the country better if it adopted the style of the ruffians party. What is wrong with dissent?

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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