Left of the line

This is my truth. Now tell me yours.

A facebook critique of the Corbyn project

“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen”. It’s been a big week. As with many posts, I’m adapting this from a facebook comment, and hoping to preserve it so I can remember what the hell I was thinking. If you’re reading it, know that you are secondary, puny audience. I more »

SNP – a party that attacks from the left

There are countless examples of right-wing policies which emerge from the SNP, some intentional (such as cutting corporation tax), some not (such as destroying their own revenue-raising capacity with full fiscal autonomy – a sure precursor of massive cuts). Whilst this is the fact of how they administrate and would plan to govern, it is more »

Labour’s problems: some structural aspects

A million people have written a million things about the problems Labour faces, with some quite simplistic responses from several knackered looking leadership contests. The main surface aspects are simple. In polling, we lost certain groups of voters, notably at the older end. In terms of political geography, we desperately need to win back a more »

Tackling a shift

This graphic is from the Government’s newly announced CSR paper for this November. We are now at a 2004 level of spending but with slightly lower income. We should be concentrating on raising that income, but the basic point is that our deficit has gone from being at ‘crash’ levels to ‘New Labour’ levels. We more »

Fairer representation and recall must become core demands of the left

There is a strong traditional case for ditching our traditional voting system. Like many British traditions, is basically doesn’t work as the tradition apparently intends. Whatever people think elections are, constitutionally and objectively they are about picking MPs who are representative in a parliament, which then decides whether to support a given government. It’s more more »

The Labour leadership – some initial thoughts

Wow. What a thumping. There are clearly some exacerbating factors. Our complete collapse in Scotland (and the hammering in England we took for its consequences, unable to change the narrative) being some key ones. The Blairites are placed in an ideal internal situation by Ed Miliband’s defeat. They are therefore making the running whilst the more »

Labour’s challenge and the ‘big lie’ tactic

There are two very strategic and very effective political ‘big lies’ routinely levelled against Labour. Both have much wider support of significant sections of the public than they did before 2010, which is interesting, because Labour before 2008 was largely pretty fiscally conservative. In England and Scotland respectively, each lie has gained significant currency and more »

Dear political hacks: please be more normal

Maybe it’s because it’s election time, but politics really annoys me these days where it used to inspire me. It seems to have such a humanity deficit, and often as a starting point, as an accepted norm. There is so little respect for others or behaviour which reflects it. And maybe I’m not cut out more »

We need to talk about solidarity

This looks like a massively important piece of work. One of the chief reasons that the left has spent so long on the back foot has been the retreat among many working class people of values of solidarity – partcularly but not only among workers who are white. Usually in these cases, it has been more »

Labour: ‘grow the offer’!

Some of the coverage of the recent letter from think tanks and others to Ed Miliband has been typically opportunistic press nonsense. I’m not sure that the timing of the letter was superb, and the technocratic language feels like hitting yourself with a frying pan. That said, the letter made good constructive proposals, and the more »