Monday, 12 October 2015

Momentum: The birth of a new "Militant Tendency"

 File:Hammer and Sickle Red Star with Glow.png

In an extraordinary and unprecedented move Jeremy Corbyn has turned his leadership campaign into a permanent faction signalling the beginning of a major factional conflict inside the Labour Party.

Their new website declares:

Formed as a successor to the Corbyn campaign, Momentum is in the process of setting up governance arrangements to represent its supporters amongst the Labour Party membership as well as the wider social movement which is springing up. As it grows, Momentum will develop democratic governance structures at every level of the network.

At the same time it states in a somewhat contradictory manner:

Momentum is the successor entity to the Jeremy Corbyn for Labour Leader campaign but it is independent of the Labour Party's leadership. It will work with everyone who supports Jeremy's aim of creating a more fair, equal and democratic society.

Unlike existing pressure groups such as Progress and Labour First, Momentum is clearly an attempt to set up a "party within a party". According to The Times Luke Akehurst said:

We find it strange that the winning candidate in a Labour leadership election would sustain the life of the campaign after winning rather than seeing their role now as having responsibility  to unite the whole party.

Momentum are now on record as saying that they seek links with people outside the party, which will no doubt include the likes of former Militant supporters such as Dave Nellist and their hostile Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition.

Many Labour MP's see this as the beginning of a campaign to seize control of the party and purge all non-hard left elements.

As arguments erupt over the Syrian conflict in the Labour Parliamentary Party (PLP), the Corbynite appeasers will no doubt use this as the catalyst to begin the process of deselection of moderate and more mainstream MP's.

How the forthcoming internecine conflict will end may depend ultimately of the major trade union leaders. They are the ones who stymied the lefts attempt to end Trident due to the threat of huge numbers of job losses.

Once again the hard left is playing into the hands of the Tories as they will be the only ones to gain from the demise of a credible Labour Party.


  1. Progress is just as much a 'party within a party' as this.

    "Progress, Labour’s new mainstream, aims to promote a radical and progressive politics. Founded in 1996, we are an independent organisation of Labour party members."

    They have links with people outside the Labour Party too.

    The Left has every right to be organised. The advantage of such organisations is that they delineate the different strands of thought within the Party, meaning that people know where others stand.

    This is also nothing like Militant. While I in some ways identify with the Militant 'tradition', they were a secretive, centralised Trotskyist organisation. Momentum has openly declared itself from the beginning.

    In closing; stop talking bullshit.

  2. Militant was hardly a secret in the old days with it's "members" selling the newspaper, holding branch meetings, brazenly taking control of the Labour Party Young Socialists and holding an enormous rally at the Royal Albert Hall. It was also highly bureaucratic renowned for stitching it's opponents (left or right up) until the Millies finally got quite rightly kicked out of the Labour Party.

    When they reconstituted themselves they managed to take over the PCS union through a front body known as PCS Left Unity. The methods used by them inside Labour to push aside all opposition (helped by an idiotic move by Barry Reamsbottom) is already being repeated by the new Corbynista current. The parallels are frightening. If you're not with them you are right-wing or a Tory.

    Momentum is not about organising the so-called left some of whom are just preaching a new red-fascism but taking over the Labour Party turning it from the necessary broad church it needs to be to win and retain power into a party of permanent protest and opposition in order to maintain political purity.

    It is the far-left that is talking bullshit "comrade".

    Momentum or Militant no diffference to the end result. The end of Labour.

    1. Entirely correct, in my estimation. Labour was already tottering under the leadership of Miliband and Balls. Under Corbyn and McDonnell, it is heading for an absolutely disastrous election result in 2020. I wouldn't be surprised to see Labour lose 100 MPs, and the Tories end up with a majority that would make Tony Blair's 1997 landslide pale in comparison.

      This hunt for ideological purity will reduce Labour to a pitiful rump of shouting hard-left campaigners, braying into their echo chamber. In electoral terms, they will be quite, quite irrelevant.