Left of the line

This is my truth. Now tell me yours.

Category: Politics

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 »

America’s insurgent ‘centre-left’?

Among some centrist Democrats, the response to the rise of the insurgent centre-left has been sputtering rage. In a widely-discussed op-ed published in the conservative Wall Street Journal, the leaders of the neoliberal think tank Third Way (whose very name is a reference to the “Third Way” movement of Bill Clinton and Tony Blair) denounced more »

Reform of Labour Students elections is long overdue. It is right to campaign to change it.

What’s good enough for the Labour leader (as well as the Fabians and the bulk of Young Labour) is “sexist” according to the Labour Students’ paid officers. To the extent that they will break their own constitution to avoid debating it. In any event, roles are already gender balanced by the constitution. That’s the definition more »

Solidarity and political violence

The ethics of solidarity are an interesting thing when it comes to violence. It’s weird enough that I come to it from the position of ethics rather than dried out economic relationships, which immediately cuts against more vulgar elements of Marxist thinking about the term. I think this is important however, because we’re talking about more »