All posts tagged: UK domestic politics

In Praise of “Brocialism”

David Lindsay Recent events have redefined the political debate, and ongoing events are continuing to redefine it, in terms of economic equality and international peace through the democratic political control of the means to those ends. In the struggle for economic equality, the leading role belongs to the working class, and the leading role within the working class belongs to the trade union and co-operative movements. In the struggle for international peace, the leading role belongs to the working class and to the youth. It is possible to see that latter dimension in the movements around Jeremy Corbyn, Bernie Sanders, and Ron Paul. When seen in that context, then it is only to be expected and applauded that those youth movements are largely male. The eventual failure of the Ron Paul campaign was in no small measure due to its failure to locate the struggle for international peace within the struggle for economic equality, and vice versa. The Bernie Sanders phenomenon remains constrained by its failure to learn the lesson of Donald Trump’s victory, and …

Jeremy Hunt and his war against ‘fake news’

Kevin Smith INTRODUCTION I thought it would be helpful to explain my general perspective on the media and the endless warmongering by our governments. One of my observations about many independent news sites is that while you can see much of the readership is enlightened and knowledgeable on these matters, sometimes people feeling vindicated for their beliefs retreat back to their comfort zones. For example, this site may include many discerning ex-Guardian readers who’ve seen the light and are content they are reading articles which represent their views. But what’s next? My thinking is we need to reach out to others and the way to do that is appeal to the ‘lurkers’ reading this site. In my experience on a site like this the majority of readers are lurkers and never comment because they are slightly behind the curve and don’t feel knowledgeable or confident enough to join the debate. So my take on this is that to some degree we now need to take the next step, gather what we know and put this …

Warnings of protests at Grenfell Tower Inquiry as anger and frustration mount

Theo Russell Updated with latest developments 2/10/18 Warnings of protests at the Grenfell Tower Inquiry were heard this week as anger and frustration mount over the direction of the inquiry, at a meeting between the Fire Brigades Union and the local community close to the site of the fire. The community is increasingly concerned at the direction of the inquiry into the UK’s worst fire since the Blitz in WW2, where the presiding judge initially refused to take any questions from community members and survivors. Moyra Samuels of the Justice 4 Grenfell campaign received loud applause from the meeting on Monday night when she said “there should be protests outside the inquiry to show the judge that people are not happy with it”. Her call was backed up by Matt Wrack, Fire Brigades Union general secretary, who said “if a total ban on the use of external flammable cladding is not announced, maybe we should start protesting against the inquiry.” Samuels told the meeting “We are a tough community, but unfortunately we discovered that through …

Still Running Wild

W Stephen Gilbert The issue of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party has not gone away, nor will it. It first arose ahead of the local elections in 2016, the first electoral test of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership. The local elections of 2017 were subsumed under the general election campaign, but the matter recurred before the local elections this year. There are further such elections next May, when it may be expected to resurface with new supposed outrages from the past. There is a very simple reason why this will happen. As a means to damage Corbyn and to weaken his chance of leading the party into the next general election, it is a proven success. It is very tricky for him to refute decisively: denial is readily twisted into the ineffectual state of being deemed to be psychologically “in denial”. Corbyn’s long-established support for Palestinian self-determination is readily reframed as opposition to Israel and then parlayed into an existential threat to the Jewish state. His widely recognised reputation both as an anti-racist and as a straight …

The goal of propaganda is a population that polices itself…

Propaganda has reached its zenith when each member of the target population thinks the same; when they are afraid to think differently. At this point ‘leadership’ may commit whatever atrocities it sees fit…in the certainty that the population will either not ‘see’ it, or will view the expression of criticism as a more heinous crime than the act being observed. This is achieved through cementing a ‘false equivalence’ in the mind of the group. Such a false equivalence is being cemented in the UK right now – the idea that criticism of Israel’s persecution of Palestinians is an act of anti-Semitism.

Has Jeremy Corbyn “gone full Trump”? Well, what if he has?

David Lindsay Has Jeremy Corbyn “gone full Trump”? Well, what if he has? In 2016, the American Democratic Party was defeated in the person of the most economically neoliberal and internationally neoconservative nominee imaginable. The lesson needs to be learned. The workers are not the easily ignored and routinely betrayed base, with the liberal bourgeoisie as the swing voters to whom tribute must be paid. The reality is the other way round. The EU referendum ought already to have placed that beyond doubt. There is a need to move, as a matter of the utmost urgency, away from the excessive focus on identity issues, and towards the recognition that those existed only within the overarching and undergirding context of the struggle against economic inequality and in favour of international peace, including co-operation with Russia, not a new Cold War. Working-class white areas that voted for Barack Obama did not vote for Hillary Clinton, African-American turnout went down while the Republican share of that vote did not, and Trump took 30 per cent of the Hispanic …

Brexit Never Just Meant Brexit

by Dan Mallon “Brexit means Brexit” is one of the many cryptic slogans that constantly emanated from Theresa May’s shambolic – soon to be defunct – Tory Government. What it means is anybody’s guess. Many have speculated it is Theresa May opting for a hard Brexit over a soft Brexit, however these are not tangible constructs, they are mental constructs. The idea of a hard/soft Brexit are nothing more than negotiating positions and seeing as no one has sat around a table yet, nobody can say for sure what the consistency of Brexit will be once it’s finally baked. Considering the European Union (EU) wants to make an example of Britain so as to dissuade other countries from following suit means heading into a negotiation taking a soft approach, will only end in tears. The idea that EU super-state ideologues like Guy Verhofstadt, will simply roll over and allow Britain have an amicable divorce from their pet project, is naivety to the extreme. One thing is for certain though: May’s Tories sure as hell don’t …

General Election 2017 – the Tories “won” but spectacularly lost

Despite the two-year long rabid anti-Corbyn propaganda from the Murdoch tabloids, traditional Tory press and establishment at large. Despite the  shamefully lukewarm  and last minute semi-endorsement from the Guardian.  Despite the opinion polls that apparently predicted an increased Conservative majority and a collapse of the Labour voteTheresa May and her colleagues achieved the near impossible and contrived to be so incompetent, blundering, arrogant, vitriolic, greedy and estranged from reality they ended up with a tottering minority government, no mandate and – as a bonus –  a complete moral victory for Corbyn and his team and a rout for the Blairite wing of the Labour party.

General Election 2017 – Polling Day is Here

For the first time in my living memory a General Election is happening with a real choice on offer. Not just a political either/or, but a real moral decision. There’s no other way to put it, voting Conservative, on these issues with these policies, is immoral.

Sticking Your Neck-and-Neck Out

by W Stephen Gilbert Now we dare to hope. If the rain isn’t too relentless on Thursday…If the Momentum activists do their stuff and all those who’ve volunteered to phone voters with the free-to-use app do so…If whatever low stunts have been pulled by The Sun, the Daily Mail, The Times and The Daily Telegraph on Thursday morning can be laughed off…If nobody has a seriously damaging last-minute gaffe…And if the ever-unreliable opinion polls are a day or two behind the trend… Who imagined that this was possible seven weeks ago? Well, I did. Jeremy Corbyn’s galvanising candour and cool have worked miracles before. We saw it last year and the year before. Alone among Tories, Ken Clarke warned of its power two years ago. But a sense of righteous entitlement has misled smarter people than Theresa May. She never credited the possibility of failure. If he becomes Prime Minister on Friday or after a week or two of haggling or after a second election in the autumn, it will be Corbyn’s triumph way beyond …