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Fri Nov 10, 2017, 01:24 AM

 

Any theories as to how long May can delay a new election?

Also...does anybody know enough about N.I. politics to judge whether the DUP might lose seats for helping perpetuate all of this?

58 replies, 5610 views

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Reply Any theories as to how long May can delay a new election? (Original post)
Ken Burch Nov 2017 OP
T_i_B Nov 2017 #1
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #2
LeftishBrit Nov 2017 #3
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #4
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #5
T_i_B Nov 2017 #6
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #7
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #8
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #11
T_i_B Nov 2017 #12
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #13
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #23
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #28
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #29
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #20
T_i_B Nov 2017 #37
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #40
T_i_B Nov 2017 #41
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #42
T_i_B Nov 2017 #43
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #44
T_i_B Nov 2017 #45
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #49
T_i_B Nov 2017 #50
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #51
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #53
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #46
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #14
T_i_B Nov 2017 #15
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #21
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #16
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #17
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #18
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #19
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #22
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #24
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #25
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #26
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #27
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #30
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #31
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #32
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #33
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #34
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #38
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #39
LeftishBrit Nov 2017 #35
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #36
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #47
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #48
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #54
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #55
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #52
The King of Prussia Nov 2017 #9
syringis Nov 2017 #10
Soph0571 Nov 2017 #56
Ken Burch Nov 2017 #57
Soph0571 Nov 2017 #58

Response to Ken Burch (Original post)

Fri Nov 10, 2017, 03:07 AM

1. Until the government collapses

Unbelievably, the collapse of the government does look possible, but who could say when?

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 10, 2017, 03:15 AM

2. As much as I want the Tories out, I also want the DUP to face electoral punishment over this

 

They've always been the most horrible party in Northern Irish politics-it looks like they are STILL trying to undo power-sharing and essentially restore direct rule, which would once again make the minority community totally powerless there and cause a massive upsurge in Republican and Loyalist violence-is it asking too much for a snap election to cost THEM some seats?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #2)

Fri Nov 10, 2017, 11:40 AM

3. I don't think the DUP would be punished by voters for this

Anyone who'd vote DUP in the first place wouldn't object to their teaming up with Tories, especially as they got extra funding ('pork' as you'd say) for NI in the process. There are local problems in NI politics at the moment, which might possibly harm them electorally; but since I don't live anywhere near, I don't really know what would happen.

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Response to LeftishBrit (Reply #3)

Fri Nov 10, 2017, 05:05 PM

4. Well, times change, but this was from 2010:



At the time, the DUP were running on the claim that the UUP were in the pockets of the Tories and would take the Tory whip at Westminster.

I'd imagine it's a bit like the Scottish Conservatives - trying to have their cake and eat it, neither the fowl of UK Conservative lackeydom nor the fish of showing much backbone when push comes to shove under a confidence and supply arrangement. Whether the electorate buy it is another matter.

AFAIK, the £1 billion bribe still isn't signed and sealed, and given how crazy things are at the moment in Parliament, it might never be.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #4)

Sat Nov 11, 2017, 04:56 AM

5. A snap election can't come soon enough.

 

At the moment, the Tories answer to the DUP.

Or, to put it another way, Westminster is under Direct Rule from the Shankill.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #5)

Sat Nov 11, 2017, 06:20 AM

6. I wouldn't credit the DUP with that much

I don't think the DUP will be the ones who would be the most upset if Boris Johnson were to finally get the chop for instance.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #5)

Sat Nov 11, 2017, 09:11 AM

7. I'd like to see quite a bit more clear water between the Tories and Labour

before I felt like that.

It would potentially be a mould-breaking election when all bets are off, but the conventional knowledge is that because of the way our electoral college works, Labour needs a lead of around 7 points to at least be able to form a majority, let alone a substantial one.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #7)

Sat Nov 11, 2017, 04:33 PM

8. I'm for even more clear water than there is, although there's a lot more than previously.

 

Last edited Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:02 PM - Edit history (1)

(on edit: when I wrote this, I didn't know Denzil was talking about Brexit when he referred to "clear blue water". Didn't realize all of you were still that focused on Brexit.)

You'd see more of such water(by which I mean policy differences) if there wasn't still a significant faction of the Labour bureaucracy working against it's now-popular leader and expelling people for the horrible crimes of supporting said leader(sometimes by making what the bureaucracy KNOWS are false accusations of anti-Semitism and even false claims of Holocaust denial against people whose only "crime" is being post-Zionist or in some cases of simply being critical of what the Israeli government does to Palestinians).

But I would not tell YOU who to vote for, Denzil. Not in a million Hogmanays.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:06 AM

11. The latest poll I've seen showed Labour 3 points ahead.

That's usually within the margin of error, so may in reality be no clear water at all.

That all might change if Labour run as effective a campaign and the Tories run as pathetic a one as happened last time, but there are no guarantees of that, especially if there was the prospect of a change in Tory leadership.

I've no idea what you're referring to by "a significant faction of the Labour bureaucracy working against it's now-popular leader and expelling people for the horrible crimes of supporting said leader(sometimes by making what the bureaucracy KNOWS are false accusations of anti-Semitism and even false claims of Holocaust denial against people whose only "crime" is being post-Zionist or in some cases of simply being critical of what the Israeli government does to Palestinians)".

I was under the impression that a lot of that had died down after Labour avoided a bloodbath, but then I don't follow Labour's interminable internal convulsions at all closely, as life's too short.

What would really help would be if there was clear water between Labour's (let alone Corbyn's) stance on the EU and the Tories'. If I've witnessed any unrest within Labour in recent months, it's focused on that aspect, but as I said, I don't pay it close attention.

That particular clear water isn't there, despite wishful thinking among some of those who voted Labour last time (and Labour would do well not to take those voters for granted in any future election) and the utter chaos in government. I'm no closer to understanding what Labour would do about it all if in power than I was back in the spring. I suspect I'm not alone in that.

I know you've taken a lot of persuading (I suspect unsuccessful) from many of us who live in the UK that Brexit is the key overriding issue on which most, if not any, prospects of future social progress in the UK hinge. If you're not convinced by now, I doubt anything can be done about that.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #11)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 12:22 PM

12. In theory, Labour should be much further ahead in the polls

On that point I agree with Tony Blair.

However, Labour would need to sort themselves out for that to happen. As it is they don't look a whole lot more competent than the Tories, many of the problems that I see with the Tories also apply to Labour and they aren't doing enough to hold the Tories to account.

There are not nearly enough people out there who see Labour as a government in waiting.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #12)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 12:51 PM

13. I think at times recently Labour have been providing a more effective opposition.

But faced with the open goals provided by May et al. and the whole Brexit debacle, it's disappointing (if only too predictable) that they really haven't been going for the jugular.

Blair got into power largely by promising not to change too much the Tories were doing (I won't deny some of the social improvements under New Labour, but given the political environment and their length of time in power, not to mention the sputtering to a standstill under Brown, the political landscape wasn't changed enough to avoid the Tories and the Tory agenda gaining the upper hand again), but to do it better.

If Labour's future election platform is simply to enact Brexit, but do it better than the Tories, well (a) that's not a particularly high bar to set (!), and (b) I don't know how appealing that's going to be where they really need to keep and win votes.

Given the ever-shortening timescale and how little meaningful preparation for Brexit has apparently been done to date, the only way I could see it working would be if they said they were going to reset the whole Brexit process and start again with proper preparation (or, as things pan out and the impossibility of the contradictory ambitions they've declared so far becomes even clearer, eventually abandon the whole thing as unworkable). Whether the electorate or the EU would wear that is another matter, of course.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #13)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:13 PM

23. OK, somehow I hadn't see this earlier. I'll respond now.

 

From what I've read, Labour has the dilemma, in a way neither the Tories nor the LibDems do, of a deep split among its supporters on Brexit). Corbyn was a Remainer, and campaigned for Remain extensively in the referendum-it wasn't his fault that Leave won, it was simply a horrible campaign by the national Remain campaign)

Most of Labour is Remain, but a large chunk of working-class Labour supporters in the North and Northeast-not everyone in those regions, but a large enough chunk to matter-are solidly Leave, largely because they see the EU as the cause of the unemployment and poverty there.

Corbyn and his advisors probably fear that, were they to go all out "stop Brexit", they would lose all of those Northern and Northeastern votes-as Ed Miliband lost them in 2015-and not gain any significant number of votes anywhere else-a result that can only benefit the Tories.

If there were some way for him to fight on a position of "Remain and Reform", or "Remain and Remake", that would be the best choice. At this stage, fighting to stay in essentially seems to require agreeing to accept the EU staying exactly as it is, exactly as hopelessly Thatcherite and austerian as it currently is, for the forseeable future.

I think it's possible that, with the way the process is playing out, Brexit might simply collapse under its own dead weight. I think that, at that point, Corbyn, if Labour has made it into power, could then be in a position to propose a Remain and Remake position.

But for that to happen, the Tories must be defeated. If they win a majority the next election, even if Brexit is prevented, the NHS will be abolished. Once that happens, everything is over. There won't be at reason to even try electing a non-Tory government if the NHS is gone-what could even be possible once that has happened?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #23)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:46 PM

28. I've addressed pretty much all this at quite some length below.

I'd rather not have to spend any more time dodging around these threads addressing issues from hours ago because you hadn't seen my earlier posts for some reason.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #28)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 12:35 AM

29. I thought I owed it to you to respond to this post when I saw it.

 

I wasn't dodging it-truly somehow hadn't seen it. My bad. Sorry.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #12)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 10:45 PM

20. You would agree that any continued anti-Corbyn efforts, including expulsions of his supporters,

 

should stop, right?

That it's pointless for anyone to keep trying to replace him with a right-winger?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #20)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 09:04 AM

37. No.

We need to be able to take on rising right wing anti-semitism (Farages latest hobby horse) and we can't do that if we are also mollycoddling the likes of Jackie Walker.

And Labour has done the right thing by suspending Kelvin Hopkins over sexual harassment and Jared I wish I were a misogynist I'd smash her in the face O'Mara. Labour does need to be firm on that sort of behaviour on its own side in order to credibly challenge the Tories over recent revelations.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #37)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 04:17 PM

40. To clarify, I wasn't condemning every single expulsion. Misogynists should be expelled.

 

Jackie Walker and probably Livingstone had it coming.

Corbyn willingly expelled O'Hara and the other misogynists, btw...he didn't have to be forced to accept those.

The prohibitive majority of expulsions were based on the excessively rigid definition of anti-Semitism the NEC just adopted that allows virtually ANY criticism of the Israeli government's security policies, OR even support for a single secular democratic state if you've come to believe that too much land has been stolen for the illegal settlements to make a separate Palestinian state possible anymore.

If a person is a committed antiracist, they shouldn't have to prove they are also an opponent of anti-Semitism. There's almost no one who says "I'm against hate-except for this ONE group".

Also, no one should have ever have been expelled or be simply for calling someone a "Blairite", or for being a member of the pro-Corbyn CLP of an anti-Corbyn MP(an MP who probably got her or his start by being imposed as candidate years earlier against the wishes of the CLP and has treated the CLP with no respect at all since), or simply for being part of Momentum, a legitimate organization that has as much right to be part of Labour politics as anyone else..

And the 200,000 people who were kicked out on spurious grounds during the 2015 leadership revote should be readmitted. They weren't thugs, they weren't misogynists, and they didn't deserve to be kicked out just because of who they were likely to vote for.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #40)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 05:05 PM

41. Wrong

There's almost no one who says "I'm against hate - except for this ONE group


If you actually believe that utter bollocks then you really don't have much experience of people in the real world.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #41)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 06:01 PM

42. OK...you can't seriously argue that there are people who are antiracist AND antisemitic.

 

Antisemitism is hatred of or prejudice towards Jewish people, any of the various Jewish cultures, and Judaism as a set of religious traditions.

It is one of a variety of forms of hate. While it is horrible, why should we treat it as though it matters more than all other forms of prejudice? It's not as though there's MORE anti-Semitism in the UK than there is Islamophobia, prejudice against African, Caribbean or Asian immigrants, or prejudice against Roma/Travellers.

It is bad, but all the other forms of bigotry are equally prevalent and equally worth fighting.

It simply doesn't apply to the opinions progressive, antiracist people might have about what the Israeli government does to Palestinians.

If it did, there wouldn't be Jewish antizionists.


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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #42)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 01:51 AM

43. You really don't have experience of people in real life do you?

Human beings are flawed and rarely fit political theory.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #43)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 02:25 AM

44. I have plenty of experence in real life.

 

Ok, maybe a tiny number of people in general could be against bigotry towards some yet defend bigotry in other situations-but antiracist ACTIVISTS?

It was absurd to equate, as those doing the expulsions did, post-Zionism or even criticism of what the Israeli government does to Palestinians with hatred for or prejudice towards people who are Jewish. In one case, they actually expelled the son of a rabbi whose only real offense was supporting a democratic, secular state in which everyone lived as equals.

I assume you'd concede accusations of anti-Semitism for reasons as flimsy as those were unjustified.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #44)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 02:55 AM

45. Given that you keep posting the same old theoretical bollocks

And by your own admission you don't properly read what other people are posting here I think it's safe to say that at very best, you don't notice the behaviour of people around you. And that's a kind assessment.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #45)


Response to Ken Burch (Reply #49)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 02:39 PM

50. I haven't mentioned the EU once on this thread

But thank you for providing yet more evidence that you can't be arsed to read the posts you are replying to.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #50)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 02:46 PM

51. I have read the other posts...I'm sorry I misdirected that response to you.

 

All I did was start a thread that asked whether an election might happen...it was civil for half the way through...then it turned.


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Response to T_i_B (Reply #45)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 02:53 PM

53. Christ, have you never ever misread something?

 

n/t.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #42)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 11:23 AM

46. I've met some.

People - and certainly not least activists - can have blind spots in the most unexpected and disturbing places sometimes.

Give it a rest, Ken. There's only so many hours in the day, and although it's easy to click away and go do something else, it's hard to let counterfactual statements stand unchallenged repeatedly.

And, BTW, to respond to a cry of yours elsewhere on this thread, I don't think anyone is seriously trying to stop you posting here.

But when most of this post has been taken up with revisiting issues that have been thrashed out repeatedly in the past - often involving you - and your posts have dominated - yet again - in terms of length and frequency if not sense and veracity, it's rather wearing and it's hard to avoid the conclusion that we'd all be better spending our time on something else other than having to remind you over and over and over again:

(a) what's been discussed here over the last couple of years, since you sometimes don't seem to bother to read responses properly, let alone remember them;

(b) the fact that we on DU who live in the UK tend to see things differently and are usually more familiar with the issues and social dynamics at play than those who don't.

You started this post with a question.

As usual, the discussion widened, generally into areas that have a direct bearing on what might happen if there was an election soon. You often took what people were saying as a criticism of the sainted Corbyn before anybody'd even mentioned him! Just as you took my earlier comments as being driven by SNP partisanism when I was simply pointing out the dynamics at play in current polling and the hole Labour are digging for themselves (it was very late on before I mentioned the SNP myself, and that a self-evident observation about party funding and the prospects for their whittling away at Scottish Tory seats).

I think you can take it as read that we know how you feel about Corbyn and Labour by now. Maybe try saying something new?

If you don't want people to chime in with opinions, don't ask questions.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #11)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 05:03 PM

14. Oh...to clarify...by "clear blue water", I thought you meant policy differences.

 

Didn't realize you meant polling results.

Even though the election is over and there's no reason for this to still be happening, a lot of the Labour Right types are STILL expelling Corbyn supporters(often on what they KNOW are bogus accusations of anti-Semitism-I assume you'd concede that it isn't anti-Semitism simply to be a post-Zionist) and are doing that


As to Brexit, I think it should be avoided if possible-not sure it still CAN be avoided, but yes, I'd rather not see it happen-but asking Labour to take an strong anti-Brexit position now is asking them to let UKIP come back from the dead-a revival of UKIP can only help the Tories and can only make bigotry worse-is not the way to do that. What matters first is getting the Tories out of power, which can only be achieved by electing Labour(after the last election, there's no place where voting LibDem is the way to the way to beat the Tories)and THEN lobbying hard against it.

It goes without saying that if Labour goes all-out anti-Brexit now, that guarantees another Tory government and THAT guarantees Brexit. It's not possible for any party to win the next election by making "stop Brexit" the dominant issue, though.

Also(and I know you are angry about what Labour did in Scotland and actually agree with you that the decision to form a common front with the Scottish Tories), Labour did much better than "avoiding a bloodbath". They increased their vote share by 10 percentage points, gained thirty seats, and deprived the Tories of a majority-and did so while their leader was subjected to a level of sabotage no other party leader in UK politics has ever experienced-At the beginning of the campaign 12 Labour MPs gave up their seats in what was clearly a coordinated effort to humiliate the man into resigning-Labour held 11 of those 12 seats-and despite that, Jeremy Corbyn ran an amazing campaign. Now, Labour is in the lead-a small lead, but a lead-for the first time since he was elected-which strongly suggests that, had the right wing of his party simply accepted him in the job in the first place rather than spending years savaging him and treating the overwhelming majority of Labour members and supporters with sneering, anti-democratic contempt, that the Tories would be out of office by now and the chance of avoiding Brexit would be much greater.


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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #14)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 05:31 PM

15. Do you not actually read anything anybody posts?

It's like you are just copying and pasting bollocks off Skwawkbox.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #15)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 10:51 PM

21. I read what he posted.

 

At the start of it, he wasn't even talking about Brexit.

Not sure why that was even brought up

I'd like to see it prevented and encourage people to keep campaigning against it, but what's the point of trying to push Labour into an official anti-Brexit stance for the next election or try to press it to fight Brexit in parliament when the issue is dead there, given the current Parliamentary makeup.

If Brexit were stopped, but the Tories were kept in power as a result, that would pretty much be the end of history. The NHS would then inevitably be abolished and nothing positive could ever be done once the healthcare system was privatized.

Also, I don't make Labour policy, so why are you lashing out as me for decisions I didn't make and have no power to change?


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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #14)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 06:59 PM

16. In that particular post, I was plainly referring to clear water in terms of polling.

Hence my comment "... Labour needs a lead of around 7 points to at least be able to form a majority, let alone a substantial one".

It ain't there.

In my subsequent reply, I extended that to clear water in terms of policies on Brexit between Labour and the Tories.

It ain't there.

I think we're all pretty clear by now how you feel about Labour, Jeremy Corbyn, Brexit etc. etc., so if you'll forgive me, I'm not up for another endless diagonal thread of pointless circular bollocks that is no doubt terminally boring for any onlookers, as I have an inescapable date to cut my toenails, and I think T_i_B may want to have words with you anyway.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #16)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 08:39 PM

17. You seem to think I'm a closet Leaver

 

I'm not. I'd like to see it prevented, it's just that I don't see how it can be and how Labour could go all out "Stop Brexit" without bringing UKIP back and thus helping the Tories.

It can't serve any progressive good to put stopping Brexit first when any party putting stopping Brexit first would have to lose the next election. Labour would lose votes and seats on an explicitly "stop Brexit" platform and the Liberal Democrats are still doomed to stay low in votes and seats, and can't gain seats from any party other than Labour-they won't take any seats from the Tories for decades to come. It's impossible for a "stop Brexit" strategy to create clear blue water for any decent party in the UK or to lead to the election of a progressive government.

I'd like to see Brexit stopped...but it can't be stopped by insisting on pledges to stop it during the next election.
What is so indefensible about focusing first on getting the Tories out, and THEN pushing to stop Brexit(especially since the May government is on tenterhooks and could fall at any time)?

As to Corbyn, while I recognize why you personally have an issue with him(an issue you'd have had with any possible Labour leader going into that election, given that we can't any alternative figure would have made different choices) I won't apologize for standing with the first decent, principled human being who's led the Labour Party in decades-the first one who has cared about working people and the poor in decades(the party stopped fighting for them after 1987 when Kinnock started "modernizing" or, if we're honest, Toryizing the party), the first ever to challenge the morally indefensible alliance with the House of Saud, the first in a generation to acknowledge that there is no longer any justification for the Bomb and no civilized case for ever using it again.

Not sure why it's offensive to you that people in the rest of the world might admire someone like that, the first leader of a UK(rather than Scottish)party in decades who has actually supported a clear break with the Thatcherite consensus.

Or why it wouldn't bother you that, had Corbyn been deposed, Labour would have gone right back to Ed Miliband's policies or, indefensibly, gone to the RIGHT of those policies-even thought there are no positions to the right of Ed Miliband that can be called Labour in any recognizable universe.

You weren't going to get a better hearing for Scottish independence from Owen Smith OR from Yvette Cooper, Andy Burnham or Liz Kendall.




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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #17)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 10:02 PM

18. Bleedin' Ada.

We've had almost verbatim this same "debate" numerous times now, Ken.

If you actually read and try to digest what I've written in my posts above this very evening, you'll be able to see what I think about the current situation (a little pointer: read from "... the only way I could see it working" onward; it's not a long explanation), so kindly quit attributing opinions to me that I don't hold.

I'm not exactly retiring in my views at times, and I do my best to express myself clearly. If you can't read beyond your own projections and whatever fits your world view, that's really not my problem.

I'm not convinced, and I'm not interested in rehashing yet again whatever it is you think about the UK political situation, no matter how often you repeat it and how much you now enlist "people in the rest of the world" to support whatever it is you think you're achieving here.

Let them pipe up for themselves if that's the case, rather than serving as their unelected spokesman, and at least we'll read some different voices for a change.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #18)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 10:34 PM

19. I'm only speaking for myself, and am not trying to convince you personally, Denzil.

 

I accept that you put stopping Brexit first. fine.

And that you're going to keep voting SNP and that's fine.

I didn't realize you were talking about Brexit when you referred to "clear blue water".

BTW I'm not a Leave supporter. I'm simply a Remain supporter who thinks other issues matter as well.

Nothing I posted was about trying to get you or anyone else to stop fighting Brexit.

I'll just ask this:

Why shouldn't we assume that Labour's support would plummet it if went all-out "stop Brexit"? Why shouldn't we assume that that would give the Tories a huge lead and give them a chance to regain a majority in a snap election?

It's not as though they'd gain anywhere near enough votes to make up for the massive losses they'd face. It's not as if there are any large groups of voters who would rally to a party with an all-out "stop Brexit" stance.









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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #19)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:09 PM

22. Now you REALLY are trying my patience, as if you hadn't already.

I haven't even mentioned in this thread the SNP or the situation in Scotland or how I would vote - you have!

And this thread wasn't even about Brexit, so I don't know why you brought it up.


This is your perennial fucking problem right there.

The issue of Brexit would be absolutely inescapable in any "snap election" such as you seem so keen on. That's why I brought it up.

It overshadows the lives of we who actually LIVE in the UK, rather than having the luxury of observing and passing opinion on it from an ocean away.

Everything else hinges on it, and Labour has no answers to the problems we face at the moment, which is why people like T_i_B above feel "they don't look a whole lot more competent than the Tories".

That's a major problem, as even with the utter clusterfuck among the Tories at the moment, Labour is barely polling ahead, no matter how rosy you imagine the situation.

You and Labour can produce wishlists of all these lovely social programmes, nationalization, de-privatizing the NHS (in England and Wales, that's already almost a lost battle, BTW) etc., but if the economy's on the rocks because we don't have a pre-Brexit strategy as a country, let alone a post-Brexit one, and crops are literally rotting in the fields (as they already are) because of shortage of labour, then none of it can happen and the country faces unprecedented economic disaster and being at the mercy of the likes of Trump and any number of predatory overseas investors and prospective trade partners.

And - as with the 2008 crash - guess which party might have to carry the can if there is another election before final Brexit. Only this time, the blame might be more fairly attributed.

All these pressures are only going to get worse as Brexit approaches ever closer by the day and neither of the parties with any prospect of taking power shows any sign of getting to grips with the many, probably irresolvable, challenges it poses.

Hell, my brief suggestion earlier up there about seeking a justifiable reset to the Brexit process by a new government so that the proper preparations can be done (I suspect the EU would be all in favour, as the EU negotiators' incredulity and impatience at the lack of any plan at all from the UK beyond "no deal is better than a bad deal" and "we want to have our cake and eat it" is obvious) is a hell of a lot more coherent than anything I've heard out of Labour.

I don't expect coherence from the Tories, but then they don't need it, as they're in power, and at the moment show signs of being quite relieved at the prospect of not being in government as the shit finally hits the fan.

Labour can only fudge this issue - as it did at the last election and has done since - for so long before it starts to drop in the polls again. It can't rely solely on Tory incompetence to be elected. If it could, it would be rocketing ahead of them at the moment. It isn't.

Deal with it. Oh. You don't have to, because you live in a different country.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #22)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:16 PM

24. OK, a reset is a good idea.

 

I'd support that.

And I can see Corbyn backing that idea-it tracks with what he seems to have been doing.

I only mentioned the SNP because you support then and you are angry(justifiably so, in my view)with Scottish Labour doing an anti-SNP deal with the Scottish Tories. I agree that that shouldn't have happened.




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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #19)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:17 PM

25. It would also help if you'd stop making major edits to your posts after you've written them.

Most of us edit, but it's usually to deal with typos or add a brief afterthought, rephrase to avoid repetition etc.

Your post #19 above is rather different to the one I was originally replying to (significantly edited four times), which isn't exactly helping a sensible discussion. If you have major afterthoughts, I suggest it would be better to put them in a new post.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #25)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:19 PM

26. Fair enough.

 

I make those edits when I see that others have raised valid points or that there were ways I could have phrased things better. Will try a different approach in future.

I agree with you on the Brexit reset idea. It wouldn't surprise me if Labour's current policy evolves into that soon.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #26)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 11:23 PM

27. Well, it mattered a bit more this time because you added questions to the end.

I have no intention of answering them anyway, because we've been over this same old ground so many, many times! Really. Read back over our numerous previous exchanges on earlier threads about these issues. This is so repetitive, and it's not changing my mind.

ETA: You also deleted "And this thread wasn't even about Brexit, so I don't know why you brought it up.", which makes my reply seem a bit weird(er than usual).

For the record (and to explain to others my somewhat heated response), this is your original post I was replying to:

I'm only speaking for myself, and am not trying to convince you.

You're going to keep voting SNP and that's fine.

And this thread wasn't even about Brexit, so I don't know why you brought it up.

We only disagree about tactics an prospects on Brexit-I don't WANT to see it happen, but simply don't think any party can win an election by running to prevent it.

What I've asked is...what good comes of stopping Brexit if the result is a Tory victory at the next election? If the Tories get even one more majority, the NHS will be abolished and if that happens history ends in the UK. No future progressive government after that, or even a Blairite government would be possible.

Get the Tories out, by any means, and THEN Brexit might be stopped.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #27)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 12:47 AM

30. When I started this thread, I never meant to get into Brexit.

 

And Brexit hadn't been mentioned in it until about halfway through.

I largely agree with what you're talking about here...in fact I support your idea of a reset of reboot of the Brexit process, which it strikes me is what Corbyn and Labour seem to essentially be calling for anyway(they should use that term, in fact and work along the lines you suggest).

When you brought Brexit up, I initially thought you meant that Labour should switch to an all-out "stop Brexit" position and switch to it immediately. That was an honest misunderstanding on my part and that was why I responded as I did.




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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #30)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 02:14 AM

31. I didn't say that I thought a reset was a great idea.

I said, and I'll quote the whole passage for context:

If Labour's future election platform is simply to enact Brexit, but do it better than the Tories, well (a) that's not a particularly high bar to set (!), and (b) I don't know how appealing that's going to be where they really need to keep and win votes.

Given the ever-shortening timescale and how little meaningful preparation for Brexit has apparently been done to date, the only way I could see it working would be if they said they were going to reset the whole Brexit process and start again with proper preparation (or, as things pan out and the impossibility of the contradictory ambitions they've declared so far becomes even clearer, eventually abandon the whole thing as unworkable). Whether the electorate or the EU would wear that is another matter, of course.


That last sentence is the crunch. If you're worried about UKIP (a worry I think is misplaced as it's disintegrated beyond revival by now amid vast recriminations) or a resurgence in militant Leavers (they haven't gone away, but how much the bluster would translate into concrete action or a concerted campaign again is an interesting point), I doubt very much they'll be happy with it.

They're not bothered about having a workable or sane Brexit, they just want it to happen, and to hell with the consequences (some in that camp even seem to think the UK's gotten too soft and we need and deserve a major, prolonged shock).

If you think Labour should be pandering to that sentiment, then it's going to be in even worse shape in the future, internally and electorally, than I believe it is now.

The current problem is that nobody knows what Labour's position on Brexit is from day to day. Message discipline from the shadow cabinet has been appalling.

There is no coherence to the idea that the UK can have access to the single market without accepting the four freedoms. It's just not going to happen.

But so much damage has been done by now - to the UK's standing in the world, EU workers deciding to move away because of uncertainty and being made to feel generally unwelcome, major firms moving their operations, financial services that make up so much (too much, but that's an old fight) of our economy relocating, an almost endless list - that options are closing down by the day. There's no sense of urgency, and waiting for the Tories to fall on their faces just isn't good enough.

Things may come to a head when/if the secret impact reports are released in the next week or two (if it happens), but I don't trust our media to maintain a focus long enough for it to make much difference.

Labour could be much braver than it has been.

It's long astonished me that Labour hasn't made hay out of what is likely the main motivator for backing Brexit among the millionaires and billionaires: the EU's Anti Tax Avoidance Directive.

It's part of a long-term strategy by the EU to clamp down on tax havens and money laundering.

The directive comes into force on 1 January 2019. Hence, no doubt, some of the screeching from wealthy Brexit backers at the idea of an extended transitional period when the UK would still be subject to EU regulations.

However, even after Brexit, the UK could still face challenges on this score from potential EU trading partners, e.g.: Netherlands 'will block UK-EU deal without tax avoidance measures'. Which could explain why the idea of "no deal" is so popular in some quarters.

These are the sorts of issues - complex as international monetary affairs are - that Labour could be capitalizing on on class and anti-fat cat lines if it had a clear agenda to counter Brexit.

The fact that it doesn't is one thing among many that raises suspicions - rightly or wrongly - about its leaders' true motivations.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #31)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 02:22 AM

32. I don't disagree with a single thing you've said there.

 

Labour could stand to have a clearer policy on the EU question.

And the tax-haven thing could be a potent issue.



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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #32)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 02:41 AM

33. Well, to return to my entry to this discussion,

this is why I'm not in a hurry for a snap election at the moment, despite the urgency I mentioned.

I brought Brexit up in your thread about "how long May can delay an election" because it's inevitably going to be a key battleground if and when any election before final Brexit is called.

Labour needs time to get its act together, if it can, and the electorate evidently need time to get even more fed up with the Tories and their shenanigans.

To add to the complications, I suspect if an election's called, it won't be with May as party leader.

The losses of MPs in the last one hurt. The prospect of more losses means the Tories are going to want a more effective leader to fight it (Christmas is coming, and given the unpredictable results last time, many of their MPs are going to be worried they're the turkeys who'll get stuffed), and one who's not apparently agoraphobic (I genuinely suspect May has that sort of problem, and I'm not trying to trivialize it) and unable to participate in debates, respond on the hoof with more than robotic soundbites or interact in a human way with voters.

This all leaves aside the issue of financing the election. I imagine if UK Labour's membership's held up, it's not too badly placed (it'll have to bail out Scottish Labour, as ever), but the SNP, for instance, will probably struggle after the succession of elections it's had to fight over the last couple of years (that may not bother you, but the SNP can win in seats where Labour's got no chance, potentially keeping Tories out; the Tories have plummeted in the polls up here since the last election), and the Tories and allies have always been better at channelling dark money.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #33)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 02:57 AM

34. OK.

 

And I'm not the mortal enemy of the SNP, for whatever it's worth-it might be worth working out a strategic arrangement between Labour and the SNP on some ridings-there would probably have to be an agreement not to push for a second Indyref for at least a couple of years, in exchange for which Labour would probably be expected to grant the kind of powers to Holyrood it has so far consistently refused to devolve.

The Tories could oust May...but who've they got who'd do better?

Boris and Gove are, if anything, less popular with the electorate than May is.

And while Ruth Davidson would probably be the possibility you'd suggest, do you think a party as Anglocentric and homophobic as the Tories could ever bring itself to choose a Scottish lesbian who's not currently an MP as their leader? They'd probably have to call an immediate election if they did choose her(the DUP would almost immediately withdraw its support, for obvious religious/ideological reasons). Do you think they could channel enough dark money to chance it?




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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #34)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 10:07 AM

38. The problem is this:

While even a lowly poster on DU can try to come up with a constructive (though far from ideal) way out of the urgent conundrum that faces Labour over Brexit, Corbyn was still banging this old discredited Bennite drum a month ago:

Corbyn reignites Labour debate over EU rules on state aid and socialist manifesto

Jeremy Corbyn reignited a decades-old debate inside the Labour party this week when he claimed a socialist manifesto might be blocked by the European Union’s rules on state aid if the UK tried to stay in the single market. ... Corbyn told the Andrew Marr Show the single market “has within it restrictions in state aid and state spending. That has pressures on it through the European Union to privatise rail for example and other services.”

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/sep/29/corbyn-reignites-labour-debate-over-eu-rules-on-state-aid-and-socialist-manifesto


So rather than paving the way for a "reset" as you seem to imagine, he's bolstering the case against the EU in terms that will come back to bite him in the arse if he tries to backtrack.

From the same article:

Anand Menon, professor of European politics at King’s College London, said the argument that EU state aid rules would constrain Labour’s manifesto pledges on nationalisation is “nonsense”.

Two lawyers expert in EU state aid law, Andy Tarrant and Andrea Biondi, say they have tested 26 economic proposals in the 2017 manifesto to see if they fall foul of any EU law. They conclude most do not even potentially fall within the scope of the state aid rules.

...

Lord John Monks, the veteran trade union leader, said: “There are no strict rules binding Corbyn, but there is a philosophy [in Brussels] that nationalisation is a bad thing. That said, we never noticed anyone being stopped from doing anything.” He pointed to a German scheme to protect jobs during the financial crisis and France, “which has done what it’s always done”.


More detail at the link about this debate. (Also take a look at the Guardian's links to other stories at the bottom of that article for a snapshot of Labour's disarray on all this during the course of this summer.)

I'm left in the same dilemma I am about Corbyn's attitude to Scottish politics: is he just ignorant of the inconvenient nuances of the argument, or does he know the truth and is lying?

We've been through your other suggestion above before as well.

There's more prospect of a squadron of porkers swooping down on No. 10 and crapping in formation on Theresa May's head than Labour making a pre-election deal with the SNP. Add it to the long list of things that just aren't going to happen.

We've also discussed who might fare better than May as Tory leader before, and there just hasn't been much polling about it, certainly among the electorate outside the Tory Party, so all bets are off for me. Though I reckon Ruth Davidson taking over the Tory leadership is another to add to that list of things that aren't going to happen. I only mention it when I do it because it makes me boggle at the desperation and paucity of talent within the Tories! It might be fun to watch her try, though ... Having said that, these are strange times, and weirder things have happened.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #38)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 04:06 PM

39. Denzil, I'm not trying to persuade YOU to vote Labour.

 

I'm simply responding to some of the things you and others have said. We aren't going to agree, I know that-but that doesn't mean I have to stop posting.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #19)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 05:37 AM

35. Why do you think Labour's support would plummet if it supported Remain?

Two-thirds of Labour voters voted for Remain in the Referendum.

Younger voters, who are the most likely to vote Labour, but the least likely to get to the polls, are overwhelmingly Remain voters. If they had voted in the referendum in the same proportion as older voters, Remain would have won. A Remain-supporting Labour party would be likely to attract more under-25s to the polls, than one not committed to Remain.

Also: it seems somewhat strange to me that you condemn every compromise with the Right that Labour has ever made in order to get elected, EXCEPT this one. If you think it is wrong for Labour to compromise on the nuclear 'deterrent' or on privatization of public services, why is it OK for them to compromise on Brexit, which, for starters, will undoubtedly reduce availability of funding for public services?

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Response to LeftishBrit (Reply #35)

Mon Nov 13, 2017, 07:14 AM

36. I DON'T condemn Labour's support for Remain in the referendum.

 

And I'm not saying that anyone should stop fighting to prevent Brexit if they still think it can be prevented.

I do think it's time that people stop blaming Corbyn for the Leave victory when it clearly wasn't his fault, or implying he could personally have prevented that result but simply didn't want to.

The reason I've thought it would be political suicide for Labour to take an all-out "stop Brexit" position at this date was that it looks like it would cost them a lot of seats in the North and Northeast of England, the Leave heartlands-that, while UKIP might not come back, it could simply throw those seats to the Tories, without gaining them any votes or seats anywhere else.

As to "soft Brexit" being a compromise with the Right, I'm not sure it's that simple. The EU is half progressive(on human rights and borders)and half reactionary(the budget constraints and deficit limits that have forced evert EU member state to slash the social wage and the insistence on "labor market flexibility" that is making those same states to weaken unions and reduce job security and workers' rights in general). The Social Charter has essentially been rendered moot by the fixation with privatization, austerity, and "free market" economics, no longer offering any real social guarantees at all. If Labour were to take a "Remain and Remake" position...tying continued EU membership to a real fight to end the compulsory Thatcherism the EU imposes on its members, that might hold some of them but would it hold enough? And is there, in your view, any possibility of changing the EU, of persuading its leadership to allow member states to have the flexibility to restore social benefits and re-empower unions to defend the working class?

The question remains...where would such a change gain Labour any voters or any significant number of seats? The only "pro-European" party in the sense you're thinking of is the LibDems, and that party's vote share and seat count is already about as low as it can get. The SNP is pro-EU, but votes aren't going to switch from them to Labour on that issue...if the people who voted SNP wanted out of the UK in 2015 and 2017, would any significant number of them give up on independence simply to stop Brexit?



As to the compromises I did condemn...they went to a basic question: Is Labour going to be a party of change, or simply a slightly more humane Tory government? Is it going to fight for a different vision of life, or is it going to be the enemy of those who do?

Compromising on privatization and worker rights were unforgiveable betrayals...if Labour wasn't going to commit to holding onto "the family silver", to preserving some space in which decisions weren't made on the sole basis of what might make a profit for the few, if it wasn't going to defend working people against corporate greed, if it WASN'T even going to commit to opposing all or at least MOST future cuts in benefits-which is what Harriet Harman was dragging the party towards as interim leader by having them abstain on proposed benefit cuts rather than voting against them-if all that had been left unstopped, wasn't it very quickly going to reach a point at which, with Labour ending up not disagreeing with the Tories on much of anything but MAYBE LGBTQ rights, that the party simply had no reason to exist?

If Labour had gone even further, as many in the PLP wanted, and ended up endorsing the benefits sanctions policy-a policy that has immiserated huge numbers of people, especially the disabled-more than a few of whom died due to arbitrary "fit-for-work"-what could the party ever have done after that that could have been anything but Thatcherite? In what other possible areas could there have been any humane, compassionate values at all?


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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #36)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 11:39 AM

47. "I do think it's time that people stop blaming Corbyn for the Leave victory"

Nobody, but NOBODY, else on this thread has even mentioned Corbyn's role during the referendum!

You're the only one who's brought it up.

The focus - rightly - is on what he and Labour are doing and not doing NOW.

If you want Labour to have a chance of taking power, you'd do well to stop drowning people living in the UK who have something to add to the debate in endlessly verbose posts that go off at tangents into defending past perceived wrongs and passing opinions that are often not be borne out by evidence and experience on the ground, and actually pay them the courtesy of reading, reflecting on and digesting what they're saying.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #47)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 02:06 PM

48. Look, this all started because I honestly misunderstood what Denzil meant by "clear blue water".

 

I was a simple reading mistake.

I get it that that the small group of you that post in the UK group put the EU above everything else. You reacted as though I was telling you to give up on fighting to stop Brexit. I wasn't.

It simply hadn't occurred to me that you'd bring up the EU again in this particular thread.

Or that you'd take my thread as me campaigning for Labour when I was simply asking whether you thought an election might happen.






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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #48)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 06:30 PM

54. Jeebus. This "small group of you that post in the UK group"

is pretty damn representative of what's going on in the UK at the moment.

We're a hell of a lot larger than you are where you're sitting, Ken!

If we "put the EU above everything else", it's because - FOR THE FUCKING UMPTEENTH TIME - it's by a clear country mile the most important and urgent issue the UK faces, and - FOR THE FUCKING UMPTEENTH TIME - everything else in our politics and how we live our lives hinges on it.

It's absolutely unthinkable that we could have any meaningful conversation about the prospects of a snap election without it being a major focus.

Take a good look over this thread.

A gazillion words from you raking over old coals about Labour and "The Purges" and Corbyn this and Corbyn that - all in the past tense till you were dragged kicking and screaming to the present and what Labour might constructively do in the future.

You didn't simply ask whether (or when) we thought an election might happen.

Nobody's been able to open their trap and venture an observation without you coming across like you know better than all of us and banging the drum for Corbyn and Labour at endless length. It's a decadent luxury we simply don't have.

Until you understand and respect all this, every time you start a thread and lecture us all when we tell you how we see it as people from the broad left from within the UK, it's going to be inflammatory.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #54)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 07:18 PM

55. Wasn't meaning to lecture...I respect your views on the EU and truly wasn't challenging them.

 

And I wasn't telling you to stop fighting against Brexit. OK? Go right ahead. If anything stops it, it will be strictly citizen pressure.

In fact, I AGREE with you that the Opposition could express itself better on this issue.

I meant no insult when I said "small group"-I could have worded that differently. All I meant by that was that there aren't a huge number of people posting in this group. Never meant that those who did didn't matter or anything.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #16)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 02:51 PM

52. OK...I misread it. In terms of UK politics, I'm used to seeing the term "clear blue water"

 

refer to the idea of there being major differences between the government and the opposition on policy.

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Response to Ken Burch (Original post)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 07:03 AM

9. She'll call an election

when she thinks she can win, or when she is required to by law. S0 2022.

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Response to Ken Burch (Original post)

Sun Nov 12, 2017, 10:05 AM

10. I thought she would have done it around october

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Response to Ken Burch (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 07:08 PM

56. Ok. I live in England and from NI so I have opinions on both these things.......

May is toast. I give it six months before there is a coup. However that will not trigger a new election. We will get a new PM and until there is a vote of no confidence in the new PM that carries a majority of Parliament an election will not be triggered. One thing is for sure, the Tories will not give up power easily. It is a mess of shit, but the right wing are loving Brexit and austerity - they will always put their nasty before country.
On the DUP they will not loose a single seat. In NI we vote on Green and Orange and that alone. No-one gives a fuck on position on anything other than are you unionist (DUP) or Republican and / or nationalist (SF). It is was it is. People are more likely to leave their seats in NI cause there is no functioning government at the moment as neither the DUP or SF have the ability to act like adults.

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Response to Soph0571 (Reply #56)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 08:41 PM

57. Thank you for that. there's a fair amount of things in there I didn't know.

 

I'd hoped that the GFA would at least create the conditions for people to move past the damn tribalism.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #57)

Fri Nov 17, 2017, 04:15 AM

58. Unfortunately the community is divided and always will be

One side wants a united ireland and one side wants to stay in the union. It is a fundamental difference that colours everything that happens. People do not vote based on the best policies for education, health etc, they vote purely on the issue of the Constitution - that is why we have complete idiots in power - they never get interrogated about anything that matters during election time. It is tribal all the way.....
Now do not get me wrong - things are much better than they used to be. No-one has an appetite to go back o the way things were before the GFA, but we are certainly not a united country.

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