Posts filed under ‘Labour Party’
By the wonders of technology and the Labour Party website, I tuned in to see Ed’s speech. It contained very little that actually grated, but at the same time, very little that could be called ‘impressive’. Certain parts, including his paragraph on Iraq felt like the right message 5 years late, and the Palestine section was perhaps the only one to mark a significant shift. But what did he leave out, and where does this leave those contesting the cuts in their own communities?
This might seem like a very bizarre question. New Labour provided a huge wealth of issues on which to campaign, and saw several massive outpourings of emotion from numerous quarters, including Stop the War, Make Poverty History, and much of the previous “Jubilee 2000” initiative. There were part-privatisations and uncountable breaches of civil liberties, but was there something qualitatively different about the biggest issues under Blair and Brown?
I’ve been pondering this relationship for some time, looking to understand why I might feel at ease in supporting a political party during an election campaign, despite knowing full well I shall be approaching politics from the opposition no matter what happens. Some pretty big issues were thrown up, and I seem to have settled on the following model for understanding my attitude towards parliamentary and electoral democracy.
Its one of the problems of being on the go and doing stuff that you occasionally loose touch with the sudden newsflashes from the media, and today is no really noteworthy exception, other than the way little bits of info have dripped through. The story runs thus: Brown has been charming to a woman, got in a car and told his aides she’s a bigot. The media goes ballistic at Brown. One minor detail gets completely missed: the woman is, in fact, a bigot.
The Lib Dems are looking increasingly confident of squeezing out a majority government. There are many pros and cons to this state of affairs. True, Lib-Lab is better than Tory Majority government, but the situation with regards to Lib Dem votes and constituency boundaries is such that its very possible a massive surge for the Lib Dems might only give them a handful of Labour seats… and Cameron victory. This threat isn’t only theoretical as I wrote about before, its becoming real…
I had an interesting chat with a friend who works at Church today about the different parties and his main concern was Labour’s attitude on marriage, which he saw as uncommitted and against Christian interests. There were several things I said that feel like they should be noted down, so I’m going to do it here.
I was immediately struck by the Labour pledge to end rough sleeping by 2012. Its a very commendable effort, but I do think there’s a variety of reasons why this policy needs watching; great as it would be to actually end street-homelessness by in 2 years, there could be much “devil” in the detail. Lets start with one simple observation: they want to end rough sleeping in time for the Olympics.