Economics by homeopathy

January 15, 2012 12:53 pm

I didn’t see Ed Balls’ speech to the Fabian Society Annual Conference yesterday; I was a work.

Well, I wasn’t at work. Strictly speaking, I was asleep. But I did go to work yesterday and, anyway, I deserved a lie in.

Not that I have to give an excuse not to have been at a Fabian Conference. It’s just that this article, like most other articles appearing on political blogs this weekend, will at least make reference to the speech given by the Shadow Chancellor. In fact, most other articles about the speech will probably be written by people who weren’t there either. They might even be written by people who got their idea of what the speech said by reading other articles by people who weren’t there to hear first hand what the speech said. People who don’t even write political articles (I know, weird, right?) might read an article about the speech that is a fifth or sixth hand account of it.

This is economic alternative by homeopothy. Is it working for you? Do you feel better? Perhaps it’s just a placebo. Oh dear, some seem to have suffered from an allergic reaction. Dilute it some more. Make it seem like it’s saying what they want to hear. Then they might like it. Is this palatable for you now? No more than a drop of what’s actually there. Now it tastes like water. Now you’ll like it. It’s just water. It doesn’t mean anything. It’s water. Nothing will change. Water.

Usually, I feel more engaged with what’s happening. It’s because I want to be engaged. I’m interested. But as I groggily flicked through my Twitter timeline late yesterday morning, I felt removed. Not plugged in or turned on. Copped out. Not just in that I wasn’t there, but that the reality of the situation shifted depending on who was interpreting it. Ed Balls is a Tory now. He supports the cuts. He is a Blairite agitator. He’s not gone far enough. He has had a brush with reality. Nothing has changed. Water.

This fiscal conservatism will strike a chord with the public. Once the public recognise the nuanced clauses of his argument, they will respond. This muddled economics will leave the public dazed and confused. The public demand a socialist alternative. Water.

What to believe?

I feel out of the loop. This must be how the world looks from inside the Westminster bubble, wiping their suit sleeves on the glass to get a clearer view. What is this? A universe of contradictions. The paradox of a single moment. The elasticity of reality. What to make of it? What to believe? This is what Kafka warned about.

I know what I want to believe. I don’t know if it’s true. Someone let me know. Give it to me straight. No water.

  • Kernow Castellan

    It’s nothing new. A tiny drop of fiscal prudence diluted in a bucket of borrowing.

    The public are not going to fall for that again.

    • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

      Right, and given the Tories have delivered lower growth AND higher borrowing, you’re signing up anyway. Per your statement.

  • Anonymous

    I honestly don’t think it matters what Mr Balls says. I very much doubt that he will ever be in government

    • Anonymous

      But you have to be an opposition party even if you  just play the political game, you have to have somebody that can make Cameron lose his cool not laugh himself to death.

      I hate Blair but you cannot argue  during his Opposition he made the Tories look like idiots, problem is now and I know Miliband is a hell of a chap nice warm and cuddly he has not got the killer retort the put downs the voice, the  what ever you call it charisma Balls call it what you like.  

      If you lose the election or come close you might be allowed to stay, if your hammered as labour was under brown your gone.

      Today in Wales this is what two journalist stated , Miliband is nice, he is really warm and honest in a small room with a group, he takes you into his world and he really is a nice man.

      But is this what labour needs now a nice man, Miliband has to go back look at Blair in 1995/6 and see how to destroy what was really a poor Tory party, but that was what he had to attack and he did, his put down made the Tories look weak his attack and the wave of his arm in rejecting them was masterful, pity he turned out worse then Major with sleaze

      • Anonymous

        I think there is a great deal of truth in that old saying about oppositions not winning elections, but governments losing them.

        In 1997 the Conservatives were so deeply unpopular, you, me – anyone – could have led the Labour Party to victory.

        I sincerely hope another devisive figure like Blair never takes over (for that is what he did) the Labour party and turns it into the Conservative Party Mark 2. There is a danger of going down that road with Ed Miliband, but of course David Miliband would be a damned sight worse.

        • Peter Barnard

          @ Alan Giles, 

          “Old sayings” : here’s another one (well, there was in South Yorkshire when I was growing up in the 1950s) – “Money’s like muck – it’s no good unless it’s well spread around.”

          Sadly, Labour in 1997 was unaware of this, as it bought into – hook, line and sinker –  the then-prevailing “economic wisdom.”

          Even more sadly, in 2012, it appears not to have bought out of what it bought into all those years ago.

          • Anonymous

            Couldn’t agree more Peter.

            If I were Blair, or one of his apologists, the thing that would concern me most, and haunt me, was that with a landslide in 1997 and another in 2001 there would have been the ideal opportunity to instigate real social change for the better, but he and they preferred to stick with the status quo.

            He didn’t want to upset the Conservative voters he had gained, presumably, but, as history proves, Mrs Thatcher had no such qualms about upsetting Labour voters back in 1979.

            I have never heard or seen any of Blair’s friends attempt to explain that. There was virtually no excuse.

          • Anonymous

            But of course  if your still worried over those swing voters, we are never going to get a real labour government back, Labour is chasing more Tories but they are losing the  main stay of the labour movement, in the end all labour will be is a party who comes to power once the Tories are hated enough, not a party with meaning.

          • jaime taurosangastre candelas

            @ Peter Barnard,

            I’ve heard of that, and I certainly agree with it.  However, to put another interpretation on it, money is also no good without “velocity”, i.e. it moves around.  Money sitting in bank accounts is useless.  I think one of the M* measures used by the BoE measures the speed of money (Robert Peston mentions it frequently).

            I try not to be trapped by fiat money and to convert it into other things, but for those who do measure money, the speed of movement or “frequency of use” is important.

        • Anonymous

          Oh I agree but we were out of power for four terms last  time, it took a Tory in the Labour ranks to win three terms.

          So it’s not looking to cleaver to have a real labour government in my life time.

          The word in Wales Ms Cooper is moving up the Ranks..

          • Anonymous

            I honestly believe Ms Cooper would be Labour’s Iain Duncan Smith, she’d be an utter disaster – like Duncan-Smith she is a lightweight and has no charisma.

            Also, of course, the Tories and the Tory press would always be insinuating that Balls was the power behind the throne, pulling the strings, whether that was true or not. The perception would be there all the same.

            It is so sad to see a party, any party, repeating the mistakes of their rivals, so short a time after the original gaffes were made and we can all remember them. To quote Tony Hancock in “The Blood Donor” – ‘ let the shipwrecks of others be your sea-marks’

          • Anonymous

            Again I agree but as we all know  we are going to have a power battle of the right against the  slighter right, the Blairites and the, Miliband , and any other faction they have, I suspect the left is to weak to do much.

          • Anonymous

            I can’t disagree, but of course, if Labour ditch their current leader they are condemning themselves to losing the 2015 election. They may not have a great chance now (though we never know what might happen to the Coalition in the next three years), but there is a slight chance. If they go down the Tory road of looking at opinion polls, panicking, then ditching their leader to find somebody almost as poor as the previous one, but is lesser known to the general public, then they are in opposition until 2019/2020 – and do they really think the public will want to hear the pompous outpourings of David “As Tony Said…” Miliband, the bland Ms Cooper  or the boorish Balls?

            I’d think long and hard if I were a Labour M.P. and remember those three letters – IDS

          • Anonymous

            Gordon Brown?  never again.

            Power struggles happen and they seen to go forward with a power of their own.

            Miliband has to find a reason for people to look at the future with some hope. Or it will be the media and the people who will drive Miliband out not MP’s

          • Mike Murray

            Just as you say, It would be political suicide for us to change our leader in mid-stream. Anyway, the Labour Party is not about personalities, if we were we would never have elected the uncharismatic Atlee as our leader. That’s why we are going to stay with Ed as our leader depite Cameron’s running dog press and its brainwashing tactics.

        • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

          I disagree, it IS going that way right now.

  • Mike Murray

    Well, I have read Ed’s peech and I thought it was brilliant.It  simply reiterates our current excellent policies and sets out the consequences of the Tories’ and their Lib Dem stooges’ failure to balance the books by 2015 because of unnecessary austerity and ideologically driven cuts. It also debunks many of the traditional myths about Keynesianism promoted by the rabid right.
     
    Ed has made it quite clear that he is not going to lead us into the Tories’ trap by declaring what we are going to cut or tax before the next general elction. There are three years to go before then and it would be tactical suicide for us to bow to pressure from the Rabid Right’s press and commentators to provide details of our tax and spending plans. The more we refuse the more frustrated they become.  Why? Because they want advance warning so that accountants for the the top ten per cent who own the wealth can start arranging for their clients to squirrel it away and avoid their responsibilities to the nation for what the bankers and speculators have done.
     

    • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

      It’s accepting the cuts and accepting their ideology, refusing to accept any alternatives. There can be no even moderately bold moves like rent caps, only shadow boxing.

      The 1% will do just fine under a Milliband administration.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=36910622 Edward Carlsson Browne

        You haven’t read the speech, have you? These are the most relevant paragraphs:

        “The question for Labour has never been about ‘whether’ to get the
        deficit down but ‘how’ and ‘when’, who carries the greatest burden, and what kind of country we leave behind for our children.

        And while we would not have started from here – a fairer and more balanced approach to deficit reduction would not have choked off recovery and thrown borrowing plans off track – we are where we are.”

        and

        “As I said at Labour’s annual conference, we will set out before the next election tough fiscal rules that the next Labour government will have to stick to – to get our country’s current budget back to balance and national debt on a downward path.

        In our manifesto we will commit to do the responsible thing and use any windfall gain from the sale of the government’s stakes in RBS and Lloyds to repay the national debt – not for a giveaway.

        And, however difficult this is for me, for some of my colleagues and for our wider supporters, we cannot make any commitments now that the next Labour government will reverse tax rises or spending cuts. And we will not.

        Because we don’t know how bad things will be on jobs, growth and the deficit. But we do know that the next Labour government will have to sort out the deficit where this government failed and deliver social justice in tougher times.

        And as we make the argument that cutting spending and raising taxes too far and too fast risks making the economy and the deficit worse not better, it is right that we set out where we do support cuts and where we would be making the tough but necessary decisions.”

        This can be summarised as:

        1) We don’t know exactly what our finances will be like in 2015, so we won’t make commitments we can’t guarantee we’ll be able to;
        2) We recognise we need to reduce the deficit and will therefore announce what cuts we do agree with.

        That does not mean all cuts are accepted – in fact the speech several times states that is not the case. Nor does the speech reject ideas like rent caps – in fact it doesn’t refer to rent at all, so I think you’ve taken that idea from your imagination.

        Criticise the substance if you like, but what’s the point of criticising Balls for things he didn’t even say?

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=36910622 Edward Carlsson Browne

        You haven’t read the speech, have you? These are the most relevant paragraphs:

        “The question for Labour has never been about ‘whether’ to get the
        deficit down but ‘how’ and ‘when’, who carries the greatest burden, and what kind of country we leave behind for our children.

        And while we would not have started from here – a fairer and more balanced approach to deficit reduction would not have choked off recovery and thrown borrowing plans off track – we are where we are.”

        and

        “As I said at Labour’s annual conference, we will set out before the next election tough fiscal rules that the next Labour government will have to stick to – to get our country’s current budget back to balance and national debt on a downward path.

        In our manifesto we will commit to do the responsible thing and use any windfall gain from the sale of the government’s stakes in RBS and Lloyds to repay the national debt – not for a giveaway.

        And, however difficult this is for me, for some of my colleagues and for our wider supporters, we cannot make any commitments now that the next Labour government will reverse tax rises or spending cuts. And we will not.

        Because we don’t know how bad things will be on jobs, growth and the deficit. But we do know that the next Labour government will have to sort out the deficit where this government failed and deliver social justice in tougher times.

        And as we make the argument that cutting spending and raising taxes too far and too fast risks making the economy and the deficit worse not better, it is right that we set out where we do support cuts and where we would be making the tough but necessary decisions.”

        This can be summarised as:

        1) We don’t know exactly what our finances will be like in 2015, so we won’t make commitments we can’t guarantee we’ll be able to;
        2) We recognise we need to reduce the deficit and will therefore announce what cuts we do agree with.

        That does not mean all cuts are accepted – in fact the speech several times states that is not the case. Nor does the speech reject ideas like rent caps – in fact it doesn’t refer to rent at all, so I think you’ve taken that idea from your imagination.

        Criticise the substance if you like, but what’s the point of criticising Balls for things he didn’t even say?

        • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

          He could have replaced it with two words: “I surrender”.

          It’s another hard lurch to the right, accepting without question the wrecking job done on the NHS, and of the hatchet job done on universities, ensuring plummeting graduation figures and absolutely *deverstating* research.

          We know precisely what the economy will be like in 2015 – in tatters. Refusing anything but the Tory’s reading of the situation and refusing to consider any alternatives is exactly what he’s spelt out. In detail.

          • Mike Murray

            “The Left need a new party, stick a fork in this one, it’s done”

            Surely, to decide that we need to see our  manifesto in 2015?If the Tories and their liberal Democrat stooges hadn’t locked us into a fixed term parliament there would be a good reason, at this stage with the economy tanking, to up the ante and press all out for an early general election. This puts us in new territory. We are in one of those difficult, frustrating  games that has to be played long. The difficult part  is to do that and still convince the core vote (many of whom abandoned us last time) that we really do  represent their interests.  And that when we do come to power we will never abandon them.

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            No, because it’ll take some time to form a new organisation. You’re asking for that work to wait until it’s too late.

            The core vote who left are generally to the left. Labour are moving, rapidly, in the other direction. The party is NOT in any conceivable way representing their interests more than at the previous election, when they did not vote for them…they ARE abandoned.

            (For example: Labour came up with ATOS, I remind you. The Tories have followed through, but it was a Labour project!)

            Sure, some will vote on a “no more Tory” basis. But that percentage isn’t going to be radically different no matter what Labour does, and if anything I’m seeing an appetite among “Labour thinkers” for moving even further right.

            Your “long game” is 15-20 years, minimum, assuming that the Tories don’t manage to lock down the elections for good with their gerrymandering and individual mandate and so on. Certainly even in the short term their attack on the Union is likely to cause the political landscape to change utterly and irreversibly in their favour.

            You want to sit around and let it happen. Not to think of *alternatives*. To have ANSWERS for the cuts (to provide *solutions*), rather than passively accepting them as the new baseline, with the misery that causes.

          • Mike Murray

            “You want to sit around and let it happen.”

            I was in my thirties when Thatcher came to power. Then as now, her cuts were resisted locally and nationally. Whenever our leaders articulated their socialist principles and gave the Tories all our plans (even the fully costed ones) they were decribed as “the enemy within” and Labour was characterised by the media as completely unelectable. And you know what? The electorate came to believe it and we were out of power for 18 years. The most depressing years of my life. Yes, it was even worse than being under New Labour. The senior figures in our party still bear the scars of those years. They don’t want to see it happen again.  Sometimes it pays in politics to keep your mouth and box clever. That’s all I’m saying.

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            The media will hammer labour *anyway*.

            This just ensures they can compete with the organisations who will be fighting them all the way from the left.

            And bluntly, I don’t believe I saw such a large load of **** since a manure truck went by last week.

          • Anonymous

            The media tends to be like that, unless of course you become the  god fathers of the Mafia kids.

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            ‘xactly.

            Not doing the right thing because of fear of the media is…well, it’s cowardly. Bluntly.

          • Mike Murray

            No, not cowardly, intelligent.

        • derek

          Lets talk about jobs, lets talk about fuel poverty, we’ve had the low energy light bulb, now lets talk about low energy appliances, lets talk about the sector that can produce appliances that use the lowest need of energy. Ooops! sorry for being positive.

          P.S. Newsbot9 two threats dealt with….Thanks.

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            To be fair, derek, Labour have been very bad on fuel costs too. FIT’s and the like are a tax on the poor, and work on insulation and so on has been allowed to drag (and landlords have been allowed to ignore it for rented houses).

            It’s not as important as the LHA/rent crisis, though. Which is going to force people into unfit habitation. Which they dare not report to the council, because they’d end up without ANYWHERE to live!

            I’m not sure what you mean by threats. But anyway, sure thing!

          • derek

            Yeah! LHA/rents crisis, another major issue.

            Sorry, Computer threats from the scan I carried out. 

          • derek

            I think the constructive economic argument should be if wage can’t rise then the cost of living should come down, utility bills, rent, mortgages and the price of food  should be reduced by utilising technology.

          • Anonymous

            Again that’s up to the market, the market will decide cost and we only need another flood in Australia for wheat to go through the roof.

          • derek

            Never again should we allow house price escalation, house prices should fall and rent and mortgages should be calculated on the new economics of living longer, gone should be a mortgage over 25 years, it should be something like 48 to 50 years, payments longer but less, same type of principle for rents, living longer paying less for longer.

          • Anonymous

            Still will not help the people who cannot get a mortgage because their job are seasonal or low paid, we need to have council housing for people at the bottom end, who may never be able to get a mortgage in today climate.

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            Council Housing is at best a medium-range solution. To stop the Tory and now Labour social cleansing, we need a rent cap.

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            Except Labour are on the Tory bandwagon and will do nothing about it.

          • Anonymous

            Low energy appliances again this would knock the price of the goods up, and right now  even if we had those  devices your talking about knocking the goods up double.

            One way of saving money is to stop stand by on goods like TV’s video’s/

          • derek

            Yes, there would be an additional cost and it would generate more investment but the extra cost would be offset by the savings in utility bills.  

          • Anonymous

            No it would not, because it would interfere with profits of private company’s , come on we all know that for ages the cost of gas has been falling, the cost of Oil dropped and yet the cost of fuel did not drop, people  make profits.

            If you had a cheap way of producing a car which would travel  six hundred miles on a charge of electricity and cars were produced by the million are you telling me the price of electricity would not go up or the price of car tax to offset the loss in petrol revenue.

          • derek

            What about cell battery operating TV’s that can be recharged at a low cost?

          • Anonymous

            cell batteries are expensive, the way to do this of course is take the Power utilities back under Government control or into Coops but profit making is causing the problems.

            If power cells worked and if you then charge these from the mains you gain nothing

          • derek

            In all fairness I don’t think you read the post correctly?

          • Anonymous

            I did and I’m an electrician by trade, so I think  the problem is your thinking green which Brown was in love with and sadly they are not the best method of making energy cheap, it would put up the price and if we are going to make power cells and I was doing it, it would not be in the UK, to make profits China would be a good place to go.

            And like it or not profits are the end game

          • derek

            I’m talking about the concept of reducing the cost of living? If you pay more for a house hold good but the exgratia payment of the good is offset by the reduction in bills, then there’s a reason there.
            I think the reality is,that we have to challenge the cost of living by producing more hi-tech goods that lower our overall costs. 

          • Anonymous

            Yes but they will cost more for the first few years and who the hell is going to buy these new ideas the people who are now repaying the debt that kept labour going in the so called good times.

            Look at the so called Power panels cheap so cheap Labour had to offer massive discounts, now they have gone  they are expensive again and not worth buying.

            Stop excessive profits of the power companies.

      • http://twitter.com/gonzozzz dave stone

        I think you’re jumping the gun.

        The cuts are now a fact. Their consequences were widely predicted and, like an unfolding nightmare, the austerity programme is only deepening the crisis it was meant to cure.

        The latest fashion is that growth is a priority. Yet if growth is to occur, demand must be present. But how far will production costs have to fall in the demand-free desert of the European Austerity Zone  if, as Osborne has suggested, we are to reverse the established flow of commodities and achieve significant exports to the developing world?

        That is the question.

        The Tories have already signaled their intention to drive down production costs with an all-out assault on working conditions – hence Cameron’s recently announced campaign against Health and Safety and the on-going opposition to Trade Unions.

        Mike (above) has hinted, with his “avoidance of responsibilities” comment (last sentence), at the route Labour should take: a social justice agenda.

        An awareness of such a priority has already been indicated by Ed Mili on numerous occasions. Therefore, while facts have to be faced, to do so doesn’t indicate a surrender to the dodgy ideology that produced them.

        • Anonymous

          But you have to believe in social justice, it’s no good thinking OK we will do this because it looks or sounds good it will win us a few votes, it’s hard to believe in something when you have not been through it or you have seven million in the bank or your earning £65,0000 a year

        • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

          No, it’s worse than a surrender, it’s a co-opting. Labour are indicating that they will only work within the framework the Tories are setting. This naturally massively favours the Tories. There can be no social justice when you’re tied into cuts which ensure that anything you do can and must only be hand waving.

          Again, as an example, committing to rent caps means that HB costs can be brought under control and even sharply lowered, compared to their spiral which can only under the Tory and now Labour plan be controlled by social cleansing.

          Handwaving a few thousand exceptions will do nothing. And that’s all they’ll be able to do, again.

          The left need their own party. Labour isn’t it.

          • Mmurray200

            The cuts are a reality. The only party of the mainstream left that is going to command enough support from the workers  to re-instate all that the Tories have decimated  and
            give the workers the social justice they deserve  and more is Labour.  But in order to do that we have to get back to power. Leading off into the wilderness as Williams and the gang of four did in the eighties is a road to nowhere. But they successfully split our support and kept us out of power for eighteen years. That did a lot to help Thatcher’s lost generation didn’t it?  People seem to forget that even Blair’s imitation of a Labour Government gave the Tories plenty of meat to cut.  Imagine what a Labour Government of the left could do.

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            Labour is, at present, NOT a party of the left (it has a left fringe – not the same thing). They were, and may be again, but none of their current platform reaches out to the left.

            (They’re to the left of the Tories – again, not the same thing as being to the left!)

            Labour have split their *own* vote, abandoned the core. Recovering the left core vote would easily give them a general election victory…and their abandoning it is how the Tories will win.

            That’s the reality. At this stage, organising a party of the left won’t hurt Labour significantly because those voters won’t go for it anyway!

            “Imagine what a Labour Government of the left could do.”

            I create game worlds for clients. I don’t get caught up in unrealistic ones myself.

          • Mike Murray

            There are plenty of people that I know in the Labour Party who don’t live in imaginary worlds and are of the left. They also know that the only way to achieve anything is with a mainstream labour party. If Labour are not going to do it for you, who do you think will?

          • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

            Then they’re wasting their time.

            Labour WILL NOT do it for me, and its moving to the right, so it’s time to form a party which will.

          • Mmurray200

            Good luck!

          • Anonymous

            You mean as they did last time altering all the anti Union stuff, see that’s a problem for people who remember labour and the way they work, if they came in would they say to the disabled ok we are going to help you, we are going to help people with  social housing,  I just think all we get is Labour saying we must carry on with the Tories spending and people wondering why the hell we bothered voting for them again

    • Gsm_london

      Change a few words and this could be from the North Korean school of anti capitalist running dog propaganda

      • Mike Murray

        Stooges or running dogs, the Liberal Democrats are all the same to me. Or would you prefer cynical opportunists?

        • Anonymous

          prefer cynical opportunists?
          You mean like doing deals to take power….. is that not part of politics these days.

          • Mike Murray

            At least we never went into power with the duplicitous Liberal Democrats. The finest decision Gordon Brown ever made. The Liberal Democrat stooges are like those weather ornaments I saw as a kid, where one sort of man comes out when it’s sunny and another comes out when it’s raining. When the Liberal Democrats are talking to Tory voters one sort of Liberal Democrat comes out: when they are talking to Labour voters another sort of Liberal Democrat comes out. When Liberal Democrats  talk to other Liberal Democrats they make pledges that they know they are never going to keep.

    • Mike Slater

      Mike,

      Staying quiet on what we would do cannot be an option.

      Unless we offer a an alternative to the tory cuts now how is any voter to understand the alternatives?  Offering platitudes and sound buites isn’t enough. If we agitate now we can begin to get a groundswell of opinion against the cuts. Refusing to say anything now just leaves the field open to the tories.
       

    • Anonymous

      Well that fine but who is taking the money away from the poorest it was not Cameron that took away the 10p for  the poorest it was labour.

      labour are not the great socialist party people keep going on about, it’s only labour in name ,

      • Mike Murray

        Yes, the removal of the 10p rate was a colossal blunder but Labour MPs quickly realised it and reversed it thus ameliorating its worst effects. I don’t see any of Cameron’s MPs clamouring to have their viscious cuts reversed, do you? Are you really saying that Gordon Brown’s foolish mistake over the 10p tax can be equated to Cameron’s viscious assault on workers’ living standards and those on benefits?  I think that if you went to any Labour CLP meeting anywhere in the country you’d find that the majority of people there were socialists and trade unionists and that it was very much the Labour Party.

        • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

          Yes. And frankly, the 10% tax rate was always a mistake in the first place…

          • Mike Murray

            Well, as I said, I think most Labour people  realized that pretty quickly.

  • Rallan

    You’re confused because you’re dealing with two contradictory political streams that only masquerade as a single party. 

    Those who seek  democratic change by adapting to the electorate, versus who seek radical change by adapting the electorate to the demands of  socialism. There’s not going to be any long term co-existence, because no-one hates like a lefty.There are many on the left who are proud that Labour did not go into a civil war, but you’ve only delayed it.
    You can’t go on like this for ever.

  • Anonymous

    The question again what makes this bunch Labour.
     

    Detention Labour had to run to the Tories to ensure it got through, then Brown as leader wanted 90 days and went to the Tories again.

    Welfare OK I know I’m crippled so I should not be saying anything, but to get Welfare past Labour  Blair and Brown went to the Tories.

    In the end people asked OK Welfare, Social housing, the NHS was being attacked by labour with sell off of cleaning, postal and goods, dental, yes we had new hospital but at what price.

    The  we had house building we had none for god sake private or social it was left to the private sector to build as land  got more expensive we had more people living in hotels, or B&Q or in shelters because labour had rejected social housing, I know of one family in my area living in a hotel of a cost of £1000 a week. B&B was cost £800 day.

    The simple question except for bending over backward to the Banks what did Labour do for people we gave them the Min wage, which we should be proud of, so your proud to give a million people at the bottom the min wage, then you took 10p off the same people in a so called tax fiasco  and gave it to the middle class.

     But worse now the labour party are saying look we have to accept wages will  not go up if your poor and working in the public sector, this from MPs who only a few years ago were demanding £100,000 because of an attack on expenses, MP’s who had a 60% pay rise and argued to firemen that you most spend of the day in bed, just before some of them died looking for  immigrants in a factory.

    I have asked it so many times  but nobody ever has a go at answering.

    Is the only difference between labour and the Tories, the pace of cuts, is that it…

  • Anonymous

    The question again what makes this bunch Labour.
     

    Detention Labour had to run to the Tories to ensure it got through, then Brown as leader wanted 90 days and went to the Tories again.

    Welfare OK I know I’m crippled so I should not be saying anything, but to get Welfare past Labour  Blair and Brown went to the Tories.

    In the end people asked OK Welfare, Social housing, the NHS was being attacked by labour with sell off of cleaning, postal and goods, dental, yes we had new hospital but at what price.

    The  we had house building we had none for god sake private or social it was left to the private sector to build as land  got more expensive we had more people living in hotels, or B&Q or in shelters because labour had rejected social housing, I know of one family in my area living in a hotel of a cost of £1000 a week. B&B was cost £800 day.

    The simple question except for bending over backward to the Banks what did Labour do for people we gave them the Min wage, which we should be proud of, so your proud to give a million people at the bottom the min wage, then you took 10p off the same people in a so called tax fiasco  and gave it to the middle class.

     But worse now the labour party are saying look we have to accept wages will  not go up if your poor and working in the public sector, this from MPs who only a few years ago were demanding £100,000 because of an attack on expenses, MP’s who had a 60% pay rise and argued to firemen that you most spend of the day in bed, just before some of them died looking for  immigrants in a factory.

    I have asked it so many times  but nobody ever has a go at answering.

    Is the only difference between labour and the Tories, the pace of cuts, is that it…

    • http://twitter.com/Newsbot9 Newsbot9

      Not EVEN the pace of the cuts any more.

  • Hamish

    Conor, do tell what this job is that pays you to sleep.
    Not surgeon I trusr or bus driver.  Perhaps cruise ship captain or something in politics.

  • ian

    and in other news, Luke Bozier has jumped finally to the tories.

    Hardly a surprise given some of his posts here and now lets re read them in the light of him now being a tory 

    • Daniel Speight

      How very interesting. So maybe those who supported him and attacked the criticism of his pro-business articles on LL should also look to see if this is really where they want to be. Maybe a good time for some PLP members to jump ship too. For anyone to hold up Cameron and this government as reformist is in denial of the biggest attack on the poor since Thatcher.

      *Not even a LDP stepping stone. From South Wales council estate to supporting a public school educated government in one go. Oh, hang on, he was a Blair supporter, so there’s the stepping stone. Who’s next I wonder.

      • Peter Barnard

        @ Daniel Speighy,

        Re Luke Bozier : I wonder what Alex Smith (previous editor of LL) thinks about that – they were collaborating on some project or other?

        • Peter Barnard

          @ Daniel Speight, 

          Apology tendered for mis-spelling your name – genuine “typo.”

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZPXYLRVP4XOIGGDJWAL6HUO7U4 David

            Surely you mean “ytpo” or maybe even “yupo”, depending on your typing style…  :)

          • Peter Barnard

            @ David,
             
            (Chuckle re “typo” comment).
             
            Mornin’, an all that. I enjoyed your comment on the Ed Balls speech page.
             
            The way I see Labour at the moment is that there’s an indelible perception in the mind of the public that Labour is wholly responsible for “THE DEFICIT!!!” It’s a time with many similarities to 1979 (for Labour) and 1997 (for the Conservatives).
             
            My second thought is that the Opposition front bench has too many people with their backsides parked on it who were in government 2005-2010, and it will take a new generation unassociated with “THE DEFICIT!!!” to stand a chance of any resonance with the public.

          • Anonymous

            Peter
            In my view your second thought is entirely apposite.. See Hague, IDS and Howard for the Tories.

            Of course with Ed Balls being the remaining major player left in the Shadow Cabinet (Miliband was a minor one)  – and also being fiercely ambitious, any chance that he would happily resign/take an exit quietly from the Shadow Cabinet.. are risible.

            So I think Labour are stuck with Balls as a Shadow Minister until 2021..

            And Balls = Deficit in many minds.

          • Anonymous

            few others would be looking at doing the same, others are moving towards the NEC control labour from that area.

    • Anonymous

      I was waiting for it with cuts to seats coming and people like Peter Hain and others looking for safe seats within Labour, Bozier had no chance of moving in as an MP, few others who come here and write Tory drivel  should do the same.

      I think another who writes on here who has been rejected by people who is another Blairite may disappear soon

    • Anonymous

      Luke Bozier? Who could possibly have guessed that this fanatically pro-private sector opinionated little fellow, who never missed an opportunity to “big up” his heroine Caroline Flint, was, under the skin, all along, a crypto-Tory? 

      Birds of a feather…

  • Anonymous

    http://uk.news.yahoo.com/barclays-boss-could-net-10m-payout-132114229.html

    America this year will have a bonus pay out of 18.5 billion within Banking.

    Bob Diamond is to get £10 million bonus

    We will know the billions British banks will be paying out.

    Labour and the Tories have done little or nothing to stop this, they have to do something because the workers of this country will only accept we are in it together if we really are.

  • Anonymous

    Hi Conor, by analogy to homeopathy, do you mean uncertainty?

    Interesting take on “news” anyway.

    Jo

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