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Labour in battle with Momentum for its future, says Watson

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Yoda-, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    Unfortunately this reminds me of battles fought in the past....

    "An apparent plan by the leftwing Momentum organisation to take control of Labour amounts to “a battle for the future existence” of the party, Tom Watsonhas said, urging Labour members to combat the threat.

    The party’s deputy leader said he was unaware of the extent of the plan before hearing comments by Momentum’s founder, Jon Lansman, who was secretly recorded addressing supporters at a meeting of a new branch in London this month.

    Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Watson said Lansman had “outlined a hard left plan to control the Labour party after Jeremy’s departure”.

  2. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

  3. bonkers 704

    bonkers 704 Lead commenter

    Momentum want ordinary members to play a far larger role in the selection of election candidates, the election of the Labour leader and over the policies to appear in the Party manifesto. More power to their elbow. If Labour is to survive it has to be democratised. Tom Watson is defending a situation where Labour MPs and party officials had too much say/power, and ordinary members too little. Momentum are seeking to re-balance the Party in members' favour and I support their aim. They are NOT a new "Militant Tendency".
  4. bonkers 704

    bonkers 704 Lead commenter

    What's "hard left" about wanting members to have a say? Tom Watson represents a failed, comfortable oligarchy that has delivered only election failure since 2007.
    grumpydogwoman likes this.
  5. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    If momentum get more power in electing Labour MPs/leaders, the only hope will be for a breakaway party. That would mean a generation or more out of power, but the alternative is Tory government forever.
  6. bonkers 704

    bonkers 704 Lead commenter

    Momentum want OMOV (one member one vote), which is actually what we've got.
  7. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    Does the Labour party have a future ?
  8. bonkers 704

    bonkers 704 Lead commenter

    Labour is up against many enemies determined to destroy it, and has been throughout its existence. I'm confident it will see the latest crop off just as it did other "existential" threats. At the end of the day Labour is the party of ordinary British people, and is the only Party that has their interests at heart, It has struggled with its record in office under Blair and Brown, and for all those Governments' achievements, they also made it difficult for current Labour leaders to justify an economic policy too close to the Tories' and a record on constitutional reform which, while radical in some areas, failed to address basic burning injustices like the second Chamber of Parliament and the Westminster electoral system. However, when it comes to coming up with policies that benefit the many not the few, they are the only real choice in British politics., With the Tories, you know you are voting for their corporate backers. With UKIP, you don't know who you're voting for because of the epic battle between Farage/Banks and Nuttall/Carswell. The Lib Dems have chosen to defy the expressed majority will of the people and haver forfeited any right to respect, never mind pretensions to be called "democratic".
  9. inky

    inky Lead commenter

    Momentum? What a sinister name. It has no political meaning of its own.
  10. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I think elections are usually won on 'least worst' rather than 'best'. Except perhaps in immediate post-war periods when we get all high-minded and "right on".

    So Labour have a good chance in 2020. They could have a trained gibbon at the helm. As long as May and Hammond screw us right royally then it's Labour's turn. And who'd bet against May and Hammond making a balls of it? Not I.

    I wouldn't guarantee it but you can't say they definitely won't.
  11. elinhammar

    elinhammar New commenter

    Unfortunately it is no longer the 1960s. As we saw at the last leaderhip election, Labour is the party of the middle-class, public sector and left-leaning metropolitan liberals.
  12. Didactylos4

    Didactylos4 Star commenter

    Constitutionally only labour party members can select Labour MPs and only Labour Party members can elect leaders of the party.
    Are you suggesting that the Labour Party should reduce suffrage?
    Or just that the members may select people you're not keen on.
    (Genuine question coz I can't remember - are you a member of the Labour Party?)
  13. Burndenpark

    Burndenpark Lead commenter

    As a Unite member I got a press release though this morning

    Responding to the claims made today (Monday 20 March) in the national media by Tom Watson MP, deputy leader of the Labour party, Unite’s acting general secretary Gail Cartmail said: “Tom Watson has made claims about Unite and its general secretary Len McCluskey which are entirely inaccurate.

    “As Unite has made it clear it is exclusively for our executive council to determine which organisations we affiliate to. There are no plans for Unite to affiliate to Momentum. For the record, Len McCluskey has never met Jon Lansman to discuss this or any other matter.

    “It is extraordinary that the deputy leader of the Labour party should interfere in Unite’s democracy in this way, and it is very disappointing that he was allowed to make his unsupported claims without being challenged, and that the BBC ignored the Unite statement with which it had been provided well in advance.

    “Mr Watson’s latest, and misguided, campaign is part of an unprecedented pattern of interference in the current Unite general secretary election by elected Labour politicians who should, frankly, be concentrating on their own responsibilities.

    “Mr Watson is a Unite member with a right to a vote and a view. But he should remember that, first, he is deputy leader of the Labour party with the obligations that this senior post imposes, and second that Unite is not a subsidiary of any political organisation.”

    Unite has complained to the BBC Radio 4 Today programme that the statement the union provided in good faith last night was only used in part and following representations from the union this morning. The union has also complained that Mr Watson was allowed to make his extraordinary claims about Unite and its general secretary without being subject to any demand for evidence

    - See more at: http://www.unitetheunion.org/news/u...s-on-momentum-and-unite/#sthash.nsfk1Jou.dpuf

    I'm not sure what's going on
  14. bonkers 704

    bonkers 704 Lead commenter

    And yet we are living in a global capitalist world, a world that has been transformed since the 1960s. In this brave new world, it seems there is precious little room for sentimental old twaddle like "workers' rights" or "trades unions". Instead we must all suck up being told what to do by massively, obscenely overpaid executives and know our place like naughty children who don't know what's best for us.

    Well, actually there is an alternative to the above scenario followed meekly by every party except Labour. In their refusal to bow to the dictates of global capitalism and to abandon workers to their fate lies the salvation of the party.
    Geoff Thomas and grumpydogwoman like this.
  15. Didactylos4

    Didactylos4 Star commenter

    I have nasty and dark suspicions though.
    Positioning for the next sequel probably
  16. elinhammar

    elinhammar New commenter

    Globalization is manufacturing with slaves to sell to the unemployed.
  17. Jude Fawley

    Jude Fawley Lead commenter

    As someone who has voted Labour since 1978 with a break of not voting while Blair was in power, I see Momentum as a right wing middle-class movement.

    I know people who were in Militant Tendency and they were all champagne socialists.

    I don't see Momentum as any different.

    If people want to help Labour they should join the Labour party and not get involved with some second tier organisation.

    I'm not really happy about pressure from the unions. They should stay out of Westminster politics and dedicate their efforts to helping the workers in the workplace.

    We need proper socialist M Ps working full-time to get voters concerns heard and acted upon.

    And I don't want posh Labour M Ps. People who have worked in physically laborious jobs please.
    red_observer likes this.
  18. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

    It is my experience that the ordinary 5/8 rarely gets a say but finds his voice swamped by the 'activists' who wanted more say for the ordinary member. I think that union leaders should look to their members' interests regardless of who is in government otherwise the ordinary Joe becomes a Boxer.
  19. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

    This is my only quibble.
  20. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    Unfortunately the public will see this as a group taking over Labour. Will this help Labours election prospects? Probably not. No power then. Lost decades in the shadows. Shame. Be truthful and form your own party momentum.

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