Saturday, 21 April 2007

New Labour - Dead?

According to Martin Kettle in today’s Guardian,

This was the week the New Labour project died”.

From both right and left there are cries of, “Yeeeees!!!” but then reality kicks in. What does the future hold? Kettle leaves his readers with gobbledygook – not uncommon for Kettle who leaves sticky fingerprints of New Labour wherever he goes,

“New Labour may be dead, but the tough reality for Brown and his followers is that the party will slide slowly into the margins if it does not embrace the need to reinvent a different and better version of what it has lost.

Whatever the future, please let it be in plain English – unless it’s my writing in which case that is not a requirement. Back to school, Martin!

For those on the left, the future holds two unattractive options: right-wing policies with Brown and much more right wing policies with Cameron. I mentioned in a previous post, “What a choice! It’s like having to decide if I want dog poo on my left or right shoe. Each is equally repugnant. Well, perhaps not “equally”.

The future – short-term, at least - is definitely not left. Only John McDonnell offers the Labour party policies from the left but, unfortunately, he may not get the 44 PLP votes required to go forward to the ballot. Another article in the Guardian suggests he may be close now – within 5 MPs – but that Brown is attempting to stifle any challenge, including McDonnell’s, by signing up enough MPs. Already he has 217 MPs signed up (see Grimupnorth).

Of course, even if McDonnell made it through to the next stage he wouldn’t win but, at least, the Labour party would have had a proper debate about policy. This says a lot about the state of the left that their/our best outcome is for McDonnell to get through, have a debate with left-wing policies aired and lose.

I’ll need to go for the least bad option: Brown and Labour ugh!!

I wish I had the commitment and drive of Grimupnorth.


  1. New Labour may be "Dead!" but do not assume that Labour is dead and buried. The election is not in the Tories pocket yet.