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Sat Jan 28, 2017, 06:44 AM

Thank goodness I'm not a member of UNITE....

If I'm going to join a trade union, I'm going to avoid one whose leadership act like this.

Stupid, sectarian, counterproductive, and exactly the sort of bad practice you join a trade union to protect yourself from.

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/jan/25/len-mccluskey-disciplined-unite-rival-gerard-coyne-for-speaking-to-labour-mps

Len McCluskey, Jeremy Corbyn’s ally who is standing to be re-elected as head of Unite, disciplined his leadership rival, Gerard Coyne, last year as a punishment for addressing a group of Labour MPs in parliament without permission.

The head of Unite gave Coyne a “final written warning” for speaking at an event held by Labour for the Common Good, a group founded by Chuka Umunna and Tristram Hunt, two MPs who declined to join Corbyn’s shadow cabinet.

On 7 March, two months after the event and following a disciplinary hearing, McCluskey wrote a letter marked “strictly confidential” saying he had found that Coyne was guilty of a breach of trust and was giving him a final written warning that would sit on his record for 12 months.

In the letter, headed “A serious breach of trust”, McCluskey said Labour for the Common Good was a legitimate organisation but, “given that it is the brainchild of Chuka Umunna and Tristram Hunt who chose not to serve in a Corbyn shadow cabinet, it is clear that there are obvious differences with Unite’s political vision.”

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Arrow 22 replies Author Time Post
Reply Thank goodness I'm not a member of UNITE.... (Original post)
T_i_B Jan 2017 OP
Ken Burch Jan 2017 #1
T_i_B Jan 2017 #2
Ken Burch Jan 2017 #3
T_i_B Jan 2017 #4
Ken Burch Jan 2017 #5
T_i_B Feb 2017 #6
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #7
LeftishBrit Feb 2017 #8
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #9
LeftishBrit Feb 2017 #10
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #11
LeftishBrit Feb 2017 #12
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #13
LeftishBrit Feb 2017 #16
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #14
T_i_B Feb 2017 #15
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #17
T_i_B Feb 2017 #18
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #19
T_i_B Feb 2017 #20
Ken Burch Feb 2017 #21
Dworkin Feb 2017 #22

Response to T_i_B (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2017, 08:06 PM

1. Well, anything Chuka Umunna does is about trying to make Labour stand for nothing at all

 

If Umunna had his way on policy, Labour would be to the RIGHT of where it was under Blair...it would be led by someone like David Miliband, who wants Labour to have no significant differences with the Tories on policy at all(that's what being "centrist" means now...just endorsing the Tory manifesto and reducing Labour's pitch to "we'll be slightly less nasty about it". It goes without saying that if Labour went back to centrism it could never do anything to help working people, because working people have no real rights as long as Thatcher's anti-union laws stay on the books and both parties commit to a balanced budget and continued military intervention in the Middle East.

Any differences Labour had with the Tories after committing to that would be too trivial to matter.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #1)

Mon Jan 30, 2017, 02:20 PM

2. If this is how Unite treat other people in the Labour movement...

...then inevitably they will just drive more and more people away from the Labour movement. Which is pretty much all that McClusky is achieving right now.

Doesn't help when Unite are by far the biggest union and by far the biggest Labour donor either. All that power can go to the heads of some people.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 30, 2017, 04:14 PM

3. I didn't support what McCluskey did.

 

Last edited Mon Jan 30, 2017, 05:35 PM - Edit history (1)

Have to ask though...are people who want Labour to move massively to the right really in "the Labour movement"?

If you want the party to be Blairite again(or to be to the right of Blair, as people like David Miiiband do) as the person McCluskey disciplined does, can you really claim to care about working people?

Just getting something CALLED "a Labour government", in and of itself, isn't anything-especially if it means leaving most of what the Cameron-May governments have done in place. And let's face it, that's what Chuka(a "Labour" politician who feels that it's acceptable to refer to other human beings as "trash"wants the party to settle for-even though it's clear a party like that wouldn't even win significant number of additional votes. Labour couldn't do anything to help working people if it made a balanced budget(i.e., permanent austerity)commitment, continued to preserve Thatcher's anti-worker laws, and never stopped militarily intervening in the Middle East.

If you were McCluskey, would YOU regard anyone in the Labour Right as an ally?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #3)

Mon Jan 30, 2017, 04:31 PM

4. Wrong

Last edited Tue Jan 31, 2017, 02:47 AM - Edit history (1)

You don't qualify as a member of the Labour movement by being "ideologically pure".You become a member of the Labour movement by being a member of a trade union or the Labour party, which of course was created by the unions to represent working people.

For instance, I am not currently a member of the Labour movement as I am part of neither. I have been in the past but not for some time now. Regardless of what you think of Chukka Umunna, he is very clearly part of the Labour movement as a Labour MP who has previously served in a Labour shadow cabinet.

Umunna came to Labour through his background in employment law, and most Labour MP's have backgrounds in, and extensive links to trade unions.

The whole matter of how left wing you may or may not be is irrelevant to whether or not you could be considered part of the Labour movement.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 30, 2017, 06:04 PM

5. It's not about "ideological purity", it's about who you fight for.

 

If someone loudly identifies as a "Labour moderate"a grouping that has become more sectarian than Trotskyism these days) , if that person wants to keep internal democracy suspended(as all of them do), if that person want to keep Thatcher's anti-union laws, if that person blames immigrants and not capitalism for unemployment, supports the benefits cap, supports a balanced budget above all else, still backs PFI, finds nationalizing the railroads unthinkable, opposes any significant increases in tax on the wealthy...well, in what ways could that person fight for working people at all? What differences could that person have with the Tories that are still even perceptible(and don't say LGBTQ rights...last I heard, even the Tories back those nowadays)?

I'm not disputing which party Mr. Umunna is a paid member of. I suppose I question why he is part of that organization, given that he doesn't seem to support anything that organization historically stands for.

And it's a fair question if Mr. Umunna and those allied with him are doing the party any good by being scorched-opponents of its current leader and by fighting to keep internal democracy suppressed? The man is a Labour MP, but it's hard to understand why, given that his whole political project seems to be to strip Labour of any semblance of its historical convictions.

If he got his way and Corbyn did just resign, with his successor to be chosen in a contest in which only people on the party's right-wing were permitted to stand(we can assume no one other than a Blairite would get enough MP nominations to make the ballot), how could whoever "won" in such a contest ever pull the party together and manage to win support among the electorate by 2020?

How could such a person win when we can assume that whoever it was would expel all Corbyn supporters(which means giving 250,000 people the boot) and impose a bland, poor-bashing, prowar policy offer from above? It goes without saying that no proposals any anti-Corbyn leader could offer could possibly be relevant to the UK's problems in 2020. And it goes without saying that there's no way Labour can win if everyone who wants it to be a party of radical change is crushed.

None of this is aimed at you(please don't take what I'm posting here personally), I just can't see anything good coming from what Chuka or Alan Johnson or Angela Eagle or any of the other anti-Corbynites are continuing to do.

If people like Chuka Umunna HAVE to keep trying to depose Corbyn, why don't they at least, at LEAST, stop making their fight against him a fight against his supporters and everything they support? Why don't they listen to them, try to understand what it is that animates them, and at least try to meet them halfway, rather than simply trying to erase them? Don't you ever find the ugliness and the arrogance of their approach troubling?

Do you honestly believe they COULD kick all of theses people out, move the party massively to the right as they were trying to do before the 2015 leadership election, and then still find some possible way to get left-of-center people to think electing a Labour government was in any sense worth doing?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #5)

Sat Feb 4, 2017, 09:38 AM

6. So you are supporting McCluskey's actions then.

Just to sum up, Chukka Ummuna doesn't actually want to expel everyone who's joined Labour since 2015, and these people are trying to listen to disgruntled folk from all sides in a bid to keep their jobs, which is why so many of them obeyed the Labour whip and (wrongly in my view) backed Corbyn in parliament and voted for Britain to leave the EU this week.

The issue here is that as a trade union, UNITE is meant to represent working people, both in politics and more importantly, to represent workers in the workplace. If the leadership of the trade union are more interested in playing internal Labour party power games then in doing the job that union members pay their subscription fees for then that is a very poor advertisement for joining a trade union.

If I were to join a trade union, I would want that union to be banging on the door of just about every politician they can find in order to persuade them of the value of improved pay and conditions for workers. Not just 40 or so "ideologically pure" Labour MP's.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #6)

Sat Feb 4, 2017, 05:20 PM

7. No, I'm not supporting McCluskey's actions

 

I'm saying the other guy is not an innocent victim. Were I in McCluskey's case, I'd have handled the situation a different way.

You can disagree with what McCluskey did here and still acknowledge that he has good reason to see Chuka as, essentially, an enemy.

Mr. Umunna devoted the 2015 campaign to attacking union and telling them they had no right to expect anything from a Labour government(he did this at a TUC meeting at one point).

He has called repeatedly for the expulsion of Momentum and spread the false media accusations that the group is a bunch of anti-Semitic Trotskyist thugs. Can you tell me why is it that anti-Corbynites can't accept that people could want Labour to be a radical party again WITHOUT being members of "The People's Front of Judea"?

Any push to expel Momentum will have to mean repeating the pointless Nineties strategy of driving almost all the remaining socialists out of the party, leaving, in this case, next to no one remaining within it. There's no way to expel Momentum and still have Labour be a party in which people who care about workers and the poor and peace are welcome.

And despite Corbyn's landslide re-election as leader, in spite of massive and totally unjustified vote suppression in the leadership contest by the Blairite party bureaucracy, Mr. Umunna has never stopped conspiring to replace Corbyn with a right-winger.

I disagree with the suspension(btw, do you disagree the suspensions or expulsions of hundreds of thousands of Labour members and supporters during the leadership re-vote? Can you honestly say that if Owen the Pfizer Lobbyist somehow won the leadership, and won it by a smaller margin than the number of suspended and expelled voters, his victory in that instance would have had any legitimacy? Those suspensions and expulsions were no more legitimate than this) but it's comprehensible why McCluskey might have been in the frame of mind to impose it. MPs like Chuka don't care about the workers. If they did they wouldn't be "moderates".

BTW, Iwould have voted Remain(as Corbyn voted and campaigned). And I'm disappointed that Leave prevailed. The problem is, there's no way to fight to keep Britain in the EU that isn't elitist and antidemocratic. And there's no reason to think THAT fighting to stay in the EU would result in anything but UKIP staying in business and continuing to gain votes in the North and Northeast of England.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #7)

Sat Feb 4, 2017, 06:59 PM

8. This is not about Corbyn, Umunna or McCluskey but about Remain/Leave and the RIGHT to fight against

Farage and his cohorts and his appeasers.

'The problem is, there's no way to fight to keep Britain in the EU that isn't elitist and antidemocratic.'

That is not true, unless you think that ANY protest against anything that was voted on is 'elitist and antidemocratic'.

Do you think (as some right-wing propagandists do indeed argue that there's no way to fight against Donald Trump and his policies that is not 'elitist and antidemocratic', as he was elected president?

Do you think that there was no way to fight against the Iraq War that was not 'elitist and antidemocratic', given that most Americans initially supported it?

Do you think that Swiss women of the 1960s should not have campaigned for the right to vote, because referenda among male voters had repeatedly denied them that right - until 1971?


'And there's no reason to think THAT fighting to stay in the EU would result in anything but UKIP staying in business and continuing to gain votes in the North and Northeast of England.'

And there was no reason to think that fighting for civil rights in America in the 1960s would result in anything but Democrats losing votes in most Southern states. As did indeed happen. It's even possible that Trump wouldn't have won the present election if the federal government had continued to pander to neo-Confederates and racists, and denied African-Americans their rights. But fighting for, and granting, civil rights was still the right thing to do.

You may think that leaving the EU is the better choice - some decent progressives still do, though fewer all the time; and I did myself (mistakenly; there was a lot I didn't know about the situation) until 2003-2004. You may think that EU membership, though desirable, is a relatively unimportant issue compared with many others; so did I until 2 or 3 years ago - again out of ignorance; but to some extent, Trump and the right-wing 'populists' are what make it more important to fight against Brexit. A united Europe is important to the fight against the truly terrifying rise of right-wing xenophobia, bullying culture, and Trumpism. There are reasons why Farage and Trump are so friendly with each other.

But one of the most important things in a real democracy is the right to fight for change; to fight for what one believes in; to push for one's cause even when things seem hopeless. The attitude that 'the people have spoken; that is set in stone; it's anti-democratic and elitist to demand anything different' is one of the most fundamentally anti-democratic attitudes one can have IMO. If all had taken this attitude, women would not have the vote virtually anywhere; African-Americans would be without civil rights; Britain would still have the death penalty; and gays would still be treated as criminals. If you think it undesirable or unimportant for us to remain in the EU, fair enough - we just have a different point of view on that; but please do not tell us that we are 'elitists' if we fight against the encroachments of UKIP, or that we've got to appease them in order to prevent them from encroaching still further. You would not, I hope, take that attitude to those who march against Trump; and this, for us, is part of the same fight.

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Response to LeftishBrit (Reply #8)

Sat Feb 4, 2017, 07:28 PM

9. As I said, I'd have voted Remain.

 

It's horrible to see this happening.

Not sure why you'd compare fighting for continued EU membership to opposing the Iraq war or fighting for civil rights. Leaving the EU is bad, but it's far from equivalent to Jim Crow or what the US and UK did to the Arab/Muslim world. And especially not
when(unlike the campaigns against Jim Crow in the US, apartheid in South Africa, and the unwinnable wars in Vietnam, Central America and Iraq/Afghanistan) the only possible outcome is a large gain in seats for UKIP?

And is there any way to create the conditions for any sort of progressive electoral victory by doing so?

All Corbyn was guilty of was admitting, during the referendum campaign, that people had legitimate grievances about the EU, especially about the economic consequences EU membership has had on the North and Northeast. If EU membership had created prosperity in those regions, Leave would never have had a chance.

But creating prosperity in the North and the Northeast would require state intervention in the economy, because the "free market" will always be trying to grind that part of the UK into the dirt for the crimes heavy trade union membership and die-hard opposition to Thatcherism.

What I think Corbyn is trying to do here is to save the best of the EU tie(ease of travel and the anti-discrimination policies) yet create the space for a future UK government to bring in anti-austerity economic policies. That is, he's trying to do what you want but simply using different tactics and trying to get Labour out of the constraints imposed by staying strictly in the Leave/Remain duality
Can you suggest any way to fight austerity and for workers' rights AND fight for continued membership in an institution that will never allow anyone any space for doing so? That would be the best possible way, but how could it be possible?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #9)

Sat Feb 4, 2017, 08:01 PM

10. Because at the moment leaving the EU is inextricably intertwined with anti-immigrant, racist policy

Last edited Sun Feb 5, 2017, 08:31 AM - Edit history (1)

and with support for Trump, Farage, LePen and the far right.

With wanting to kick out immigrants. With using the leave vote as an excuse for rejecting 'political correctness' and taking it as a green light for bullying, racism, violence to people heard speaking languages other than English, etc.

BREXIT IS FUNDAMENTALLY ABOUT REJECTING IMMIGRANTS AND FOREIGNERS! AND ABOUT REVERSING SOCIAL PROGRESS! Of course there are many people who voted Leave for other reasons; but this is what the Brexit *leaders* want.

And increasingly it is associated with the economic right as well. If we leave the single market, we are likely to become a low-tax, low-regulation, low-welfare economy. That's what the government has told us. And even if Labour get in, they will have a very hard time dealing with the massive economic deficit that would result from Brexit. They will not be as ready as the Tories to balance the books on the backs of the poor, but they would have a hard time maintaining welfare and job security under the massive deficit and loss of trade and industry that would result. Especially if Trump is exerting all kinds of hostile pressures.


This is not BTW just about Corbyn - his original chief rival Andy Burnham has become worse than Corbyn in pandering to the Brexiters.

UKIP has ONE MP, and he is not from the North or Northeast. If people in the North (or anywhere) would truly turn to UKIP in droves under these or any circumstances, then basically all hope is lost for anything good in the world or at least in this country, and we're back to the 1930s, and I and all others like me have lived too long, and might as well just give up on all hope for anything good ever happening again. But I don't think this is the case. I think that the monsters of pure evil on the Trump/UKIP side can be defeated (at least, if the cancer does not spread elsewhere in Europe, i.e. if LePen does not win in France) What Labour need to do is to say, 'We have all lied to you over the years. There have been cuts and loss of industry and public services - but it is not due to the EU or to immigrants; that is just an excuse. It is due to Thatcherite policies, and our own failure to effectively fight and reverse them. If you elect us, we will introduce public works programmes and public service expansion; we will try to make sure that people don't just have jobs but have secure jobs; we will try to enable people to have access to the public services that they need -BUT we cannot do so easily if we are at the same time losing ties with our nearest trading partners, and if Trump is raging. Please let us have four years to make the changes, without Trump breathing down our necks. If in four years' time you still wish to leave the EU, we can revisit it then, when the international crisis is over.'

And then seek to put their promises into practice. That will deal hopefully with people's genuine economic concerns. Pandering to UKIP and xenophobia and racism will not do any good.



'Can you suggest any way to fight austerity and for workers' rights AND fight for continued membership in an institution that will never allow anyone any space for doing so? That would be the best possible way, but how could it be possible?'

I certainly cannot suggest any way to fight austerity and for workers' rights AND at the same time to leave an institution, which with all its own faults, is keeping us afloat economically, and is all that stands between us and far greater dependence on countries that do not value workers' rights at all: China; Saudi Arabia; the US under Trump. It was not the EU that 'never left us space for fighting austerity'; it was our own governments, which of course found it very convenient to allow people to blame the EU rather than them. (I am actually opposed to the single currency, but we are not in it, or ever likely to be.)


In any case: I would never tell YOU to give up the fight against something that you consider of desperate importance and danger to everything you value, and certainly I would never call you 'anti-democratic and elitist' for doing so; and I would be grateful if you did not do the same to us. Some of us are truly OUT OF OUR MINDS WITH TERROR of the right-wingers trying to take over in our country, just as I'm sure you are of those in yours!

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Response to LeftishBrit (Reply #8)


Response to Ken Burch (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 5, 2017, 07:13 AM

12. Was this post intended for me?

I don't have strong views one way or another about McCluskey. I just feel that those of us who oppose Brexit should have the right to campaign against it. The same for those who oppose Trump,

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Response to LeftishBrit (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 5, 2017, 02:06 PM

13. I should have sent it to the person who started this thread

 

What Len McCluskey did in response to his essentially-conservative challenger was the reason this thread was created. Sorry for misdirecting it.

You responded to what I posted in a string of exchanges on the McCluskey thing, and I inadvertently responded to you when I should have responded to the OTHER poster. I've now self-deleted my response to you there and reposted it as a response to the other poster.

I support the fight against xenophobia and against immigrant-bashing. Always have.

Not sure why you brought up the EU in this thread when this wasn't an EU thread.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #13)

Sun Feb 5, 2017, 03:29 PM

16. I was responding specifically to your remark

'The problem is, there's no way to fight to keep Britain in the EU that isn't elitist and antidemocratic. And there's no reason to think THAT fighting to stay in the EU would result in anything but UKIP staying in business and continuing to gain votes in the North and Northeast of England.'

This is why I brought up the EU.

The right-wing media are absolutely gung-ho in their propaganda to suppress dissent about the EU, and about immigration and refugees, by smearing anti-Brexiters in precisely these terms as elitist and anti-democratic; and for example calling judges who insisted on a parliamentary vote on Brexit as 'ENEMIES OF THE PEOPLE'. They are indeed intimidating many Labour politicians as well as almost all Tory ones. I know that you are not in this country, and cannot be expected to be aware of some of the implications and origins of certain debating points; but you - no doubt inadvertently - used the same arguments that our RW media are using to suppress dissent; and that is what I was protesting against in my posts.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 5, 2017, 02:34 PM

14. Two things I think came into play with what McCluskey did(I don't support suspensions, period)

 

1) According to the link, the meeting of some Labour MPs Coyne spoke was not concerned with the EU fight OR an occasion on which Coyne was there to fight for the needs of working people: It was a meeting of an organization, "Labour for the Common Good", that has been seen by many on the center-left and left as a potential second-SDP-in-the-making. Would you really expect any real union leader to think a new "radical centre" splinter party could possibly fight for working people or the poor or to want to see his deputy giving aid and comfort to such a group?

2) Coyne is challenging McCluskey from sharply to his right, on a "labour management cooperation", or unconditional surrender to the bosses platform. Given that labour-management cooperation pretty much always leads to union negotiators agreeing to every concession management ever demands, how is such a concept ever a way to fight for higher wages ad better conditions for the workers that union represents?

Are you sure McCluskey isn't just trying to defend his membership here?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #14)

Sun Feb 5, 2017, 02:56 PM

15. Thank f**k you aren't my union rep

As you seem to have a bizarre idea of what Trade Unions are there to do and why you would join one. I have worked in one place where the industrial relations are poor because the union took the view that working with management to improve matters would be unconditional surrender and I have no wish to repeat the experience.

Coyne's actual position is that he wants UNITE to concentrate more on improving matters for its members in the workplace than on trying to run the Labour party. There's been a few things he's said during the contest that I profoundly disagree with but on this point he is actually right. You join a trade union to fight for improved pay and conditions at work, not to play silly power games at Westminster.

However, I very much doubt that he will come anywhere near toppling McCluskey. The question then becomes more about how long McCluskey goes before losing faith with the Labour leader he's been propping up.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #15)

Sun Feb 5, 2017, 07:51 PM

17. Is there any way to improve matters for UNITE's members..

 

...by speaking to a group that is prepared to divide the anti-Tory vote if the Labour leader they dislike isn't forced out of his position, or to keep sabotaging their own party's chance for victory until he is forced out?

It goes without saying that a party led by the sort of person Chuka Umunna would accept as leader would never do anything to help working people. How pro-worker can you be when you refer to other human beings as "trash"? You can't help working people and make a show of being "pro-business" and while doing even more privatization, just as nothing pro-worker would have been done by an SDP-Liberal government.

BTW, it's not as though Corbyn would have to stand down and be replaced by a right-winger if only it weren't for UNITE. Most Labour supporters and members don't want him to go, and he was just re-elected leader by increased majority in the last leadership vote

And I'll ask this again...if the anti-Corbyn crowd really wants Jeremy to stand down, why don't they make it clear that they don't want Jeremy's supporters driven away and everything he and his supporters want in terms of policy repudiated?

How do they think they could ever get Labour elected if most of the Left in the UK was once again made to feel as totally unwelcome in the party as it was after 1992?

These are important questions, because it goes without saying that there would be no influx of people into the ranks of Labour sympathizers once the left was once again driven away. There's no huge bloc of people in the UK who'd get right to getting the Tories out if only Labour became a socialist-and-activist free zone again.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #17)

Sat Feb 11, 2017, 05:45 AM

18. The answer is by building coalitions

Last edited Sat Feb 11, 2017, 02:06 PM - Edit history (1)

UNITE pretty much automatically have a dominant position in the Labour movement due simply to the size of the union. That much has been the case ever since Amicus and TGWU merged to form UNITE. However, if they continue down the current path of behaving more like a monopolistic business then a responsible organisation concerned primarily with the welfare of their members then all that they will be achieving is the death of all their ambitions to reverse the decline of trade unionism.

A more mature approach based on building coalitions with other trade unions and other groups on the left is the only way forward, but unfortunately it requires bigger men than McClusky and Corbyn in charge to make it happen.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #18)

Sat Feb 11, 2017, 03:14 PM

19. The members of the PLP who still want Corbyn out aren't PART of the left, though

 

They want Labour to go back to where it was heading before the 2015 leadership vote-to the RIGHT of Tony Blair.

These were the people who wanted the party to endorse the benefits cap and the budget charter, while keeping Thatcher's anti-worker laws in place.

Can you not see that if Labour did those things, it could never do anything compassionate or pro-worker or pro-human decency again once in office? That those policies would commit Labour to the permanent austerity policies that have made every social democratic party on the European mainland unelectable? The policies that turned all of those parties into enemies of the labour movement in their countries?

That's why McCluskey would have no patience with his deputy doing these things. He was wrong to suspend the guy, but would you really expect McCluskey to be cool with him giving aid and comfort to people with no positive intent, people whose only motivation is to make Labour indistinguishable from the Tories on all major issues?

Ask yourself this...if Liz Kendall had won the leadership, could you think of any good reason for any union in the UK, or anyone there who cared about progressive change of any sort, to even bother to work to try to elect a Labour government with her as the leader? This matters because Kendall is the person most of the PLP wanted as leader.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #19)

Sat Feb 11, 2017, 03:58 PM

20. They absolutly are 100% part of the left

If you don't think that somebody like Clive Lewis is part of the left because he has resigned from the shadow cabinet then quite frankly you belong in a psychiatric institution. If you don't like the fact that Labour MP's consider Jeremy Corbyn to be a useless waste of space, consider the reality of the situation.

It's not all about Jeremy fucking Corbyn. Grow up and start looking at the real world.

Oh, and don't come bleating on here about Labour MP's not being ideologically pure enough. We are sick of repeated failures in the name of left wing anti-capitalist purity putting our human rights and freedoms at stake. Including the employment rights that trade unions used to fight for.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #20)

Sun Feb 12, 2017, 01:29 AM

21. I've got nothing against Clive Lewis. Clive Lewis supports Jeremy as leader.

 

He reaffirmed this when he resigned from the Shadow Cabinet. He disagrees with Corbyn's strategy on Brexit, but he doesn't want Corbyn to resign.

And you know perfectly well the PLP would never allow anyone as far to the left as Clive to be on the leadership ballot if it was left up to them.

And I've made suggestions as to how the PLP might be able to persuade Corbyn to go if he's really that much of a problem:

1)They could commit to making sure at least one other left-wing candidate was nominated in the leadership vote to replace Corbyn;

2)They could agree that all the suspensions and expulsions imposed on left-wing people during the last leadership vote being lifted, since all of those people should have a right to vote.

3)They could commit to restoring full internal party democracy.

Instead of offering anything remotely close to those proposals, they've offered nothing but a proposal to invent a pathetic, meaningless position as "party president". In that position, Jeremy would have no say in policy and would be expected to unquestioningly support the restored Blairite agenda the PLP wants to impose. And he would be expected to support every act of retribution the party imposed on his supporters.

Why would you ever expect the man to go under those circumstances? You wouldn't, if you were him.

And it's not about "purity". It's about fighting for the people. You can't do that and support the benefits cap, the budget charter, bombing Syria and Thatcher's anti-worker laws(the agenda the anti-Corbynites insist on, from all that I've read).

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Response to T_i_B (Original post)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 06:00 AM

22. Unite HQ

Hi,

Coincidentally, my wife and I often have lunch in the Unite HQ. We are not members, but it's no problem and they do a good baked potato. There is plenty of reading matter spread around and it is refreshing to be in a political environment completely at odds with the world outside, just for a lunchtime. It's actually a kind of time travel.

D.

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