Friday, 19 July 2019

Labour staff walk out, GMB Motion and Jewish Community Leadership respond to the Shadow Cabinet

The crisis faced by the Labour Party, anti-Semitism and it's treatment of staff never seems to end. Politics today reported that Labour Staff walked when their new boss arrived:

The protest took place on Jules Rutherford’s first day as Labour’s new head of membership on Wednesday.

Politics Home revealed how Ms Rutherford had retweeted a post which claimed anti-semitism allegations were "smears against the party leader".


Shortly after Labour were contacted about it, Ms Rutherford's Twitter account was deleted.

It is understood that her appointment caused anger among staff in Labour's Newcastle office, where the party's membership department is based.

A Labour source said: "On her first day, she went around desks meeting colleagues - only they all walked out of the office because they didn’t want to meet her."

One member of staff did remain in the office, but only to challenge Ms Rutherford on her views on anti-semitism and to ask why she had retweeted the "smear" video.

A Labour spokesperson refused to comment.


It seems Labour like the Socialist Party (see post below) treat their employees with disdain. At least the Labour staff belong to a trade union. They obviously need one. Their Branch passed the following motion as reported by Politics Home previously:

"Anti-semitism is a cancer which will spread if given the freedom to do so. It should be condemned and challenged wherever it rears its head

"Whistleblowers do so at enormous personal risk and should be commended and supported, never attacked – particularly not by the Labour Party

"All employees or former employees, regardless of the organisation, should be free to act as whistleblowers without obscene threats of legal action."

It "condemned the Labour Party’s official response to the Panorama programme and the attacks on former staff who we have found to be committed, principled and honest".

The motion went on to "demand that the Labour Party apologises to former colleagues for the attacks launched on them by both the Labour Party officially and approved “outriders” over the Panorama programme which highlighted the problem of anti-semitism within the Labour Party".

Meanwhile the Jewish Leadership Council writes:








































































Labour Against Anti-Semitism responded with the following statement:



Socialist Party witholding their staff's wages?

Socialist Party logo

The Socialist Party is facing a major split in it's Committee for a Workers International (CWI) due to a couple of their sections undertaking activities that involve things like women's rights.  Their small but surprisingly successful Irish section along with groups in Spain & Greece plus some others may see themselves expelled very shortly.

At the heart of the dispute is the vexed question of "Mandelism" (a reference to a deceased leader of the main Fourth International) which in this case means that Peter Taffe has accused his opponents of dropping workers rights in favour of petty bourgeois issue. The workers must always come first except when they work for the Socialist Party itself.

Of course the internal conflict has reached these shores as a small faction are now looking to be expelled by edict on Monday. Thing is several of their full time workers will be included in this forthcoming purge. 

Surprisingly or not the SP staff do not belong to a trade union and are now faced with the situation that their wages are being withheld.  Imagine what their newspaper would say about any employer who withheld wages before they sacked. Yet in this factional struggle their own staff are treated in this way.

I have no idea how much these people earn but in the old days of Militant their full timers got £50 on top of their state benefits.

Meanwhile in this weeks paper of the Socialist Party one of their members Jeremy Davidson writes:

....employees often get bullied by the incompetent management which chooses to blame the workers instead of taking responsibility for its countless mistakes.

We are employed in precarious working environments with no union recognition: in the hospitality sector, small businesses, and other workplaces of every type across the country. It can be easy to forget that people of all ages face the same struggles on a daily basis.

Oh the irony.

Yet another far-left group shows it's true colours. The SWP leadership covered up for a rapist. The Socialist Party starves it's workers.

That's the far left for you comrades.

Wednesday, 17 July 2019

Labour Peers advertise concerns about anti-Semitism and Corbyn's response (REVISED)

The following advert was issued by 65 Labour Peers and is reproduced here below followed by Corbyn's reply:








































It seems that Labour's actual response to this development was rather more hostile and the letter I found to Baroness Smith preceded the Peers attack.

According to The Guardian:

Responding to the advert, a Labour party spokesman said Corbyn and the Labour party “stand in solidarity with Jewish people and are fully committed to the support, defence and celebration of the Jewish community”.

The spokesman said Labour was taking decisive action against antisemitism “regardless of false and misleading claims about the party by those hostile to Jeremy Corbyn’s politics”.

“Jeremy Corbyn has made clear in interviews, videos and articles that there is no place for antisemitism in the party,” he added.

“Jennie Formby [the general secretary] has sped up and strengthened procedures and the rate at which cases are dealt with has increased more than four-fold. Since September 2015, the number of cases that have undergone disciplinary procedures relate to about 0.06% of members.

“The Labour party’s comprehensive rebuttal of the Panorama programme did not in any way criticise Jewish members who have suffered antisemitism. As we said after the programme aired, we will fully investigate any complaints alleging antisemitic incidents reported by party members in interviews in the programme.”


Corbyn's recent letter to Baroness Smith:



Tuesday, 16 July 2019

Summer Reading

The Sunday Supplements are full of recommendations about books to take on holiday which can range from crime thrillers, passionate love stories all the way to literary novels. Not entirely sure where the dividing line comes for fiction with the term "literary" which always sounds, well frankly snobbish to me.

These "literary" critics are the types that generally turn their nose up at science fiction and fantasy which is normally the main area of fiction I choose to enter. They are the same types who pointed Godzilla (the nineties version) was just a monster coming out and getting shot at by the military.  My girlfriend and I enjoyed it. Good fun. Not so sure about the new one but I'll watch the forthcoming sequel on DVD when it comes out.

Point is one of these critics recommended some film about gay men in a Turkish Bath slapping each other with towels. Not exactly what I want to see. I'm sure it has an audience but I would find paint drying more entertaining. Or Godzilla!


Still it's about time I caught up with my reading and had already started Maoism: A Global History by Julia Lovell (Bodley Head Hardback £30) when I picked up a crime thriller recommended by The Observer reviewers which captivated me from the moment I started.

The Chain by Adrian McKinty (Orion Hardback £12.99) is about a woman who has her child getting kidnapped and having to pay a ransom and kidnap another to free not just her child but that of the kidnappers. If she fails both children will be killed, The Chain must not be broken. She must then pass on the task to the next set of parents and so on.

A policeman is killed very early on in the story and our heroine gets warned by the kidnappers and someone else who was part of The Chain previously not to diverge from her task. The participants are all being watched by the originators of The Chain. Fascinating and gripping.

I'll finish this before returning to  Julia Lovell's tome on the world phenomenon of Maoism which in the age of emergent Chinese capitalism under communist control would seem worthy of some attention. Maoism never really took off in the UK. The only "major" figure was trade unionist Reg Birch who founded the still existing Communist Party of Britain Marxist- Leninist who publish The Worker magazine.

Most British Maoists have been tiny very strange cults like The Workers' Institute of Marxism–Leninism–Mao Zedong Thought who once told the workers that the Chinese Army was already here....it's founder and leader was one Aravindan Balakrishnan now in prison for slavery and abuse of his remaining female followers.

Nevertheless modern China has risen to become a serious challenger to US economic hegemony and I look forward to returning to this book which once read will inspire me to read Max Hasting's Vietnam: A tragic History 1945 to 1975 (William Collins Hardback £30) which was a Christmas present. Hastings being a journalist has a very readable style and I have several of his books which are all worth reading.

Finally somewhere between all this I need to read A Prophet Without Honour by Joseph Wurtenbaugh  an alternative history novel written in the form of memos and documents from fictional participants in The Second World War. I picked this up a while back via an ad on Facebook.

It was shipped from the USA so I have no idea if it was ever published over here and I've forgotten the price. Sorry. It wasn't that expensive, I'm a pensioner so have a limited budget.









































These are my choices for summer as I reduce my blogging for a while but don't go away I will still be posting just not daily so do check in and leave a comment if you wish.

Friday, 12 July 2019

Friday Night "18 Rated" Heavy Metal with Steel Panther





T




















Time to party on a Friday night with this heavy metal band Steel Panther who hail from the USA. I've pre-ordered their new album Heavy Metal Rules which is due out at the end of September.

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Momentum go all Mary Whitehouse!















It's all a bit "deja vu" this afternoon as Momentum launch an e-mail  protest to the BBC Panorama Programme. All a bit "Mary Whitehouse" harking back to the bad old days when Nuns were outside the cinema handing out leaflets urging people to boycott Monty Python's Life of Brian. It was "blasphemous" apparently.

Not that they had actually seen it.

And frankly neither has anyone in Momentum. All they know is that some people have torn up their Non Disclosure Orders to expose what is apparently/allegedly/actually going on inside Labour. One wonders what these people have/want to hide.

It's likely more people will be watching Panorama tonight precisely because of the fuss. A bit like the attempts to suppress The Satanic Verses backfired with lot's of people buying the book who normally wouldn't. Censorship never works.

Unless you want to send us all to the Gulags.

Oh wait......

The Momentum Witch Hunt continues.......



Tuesday, 9 July 2019

New Music: Deep Purple, New Collection: Kylie Minogue, News: Baby Metal



Deep Purple have released a "new" album from a concert recorded in Newcastle way back in March 2001. Limited to 2,000 double CD's and the same number of triple vinyl copies this should sell out fairly quickly.

he line up consists of Gillan, Glover, Lord, Morse and Paice who give a solid performance but this is no Made In Japan or even Made In Europe both of which are top notch albums, the former ranking amongst the best rock albums of all time.

One of my favourite performances is this satire on Mary Whitehouse who was an absolute pain in the neck complaining about Doctor Who being too violent and even attacked Tom & Jerry. Let alone sex... Censorious old bitch she was.  Audio only I'm afraid!



Official website: www.deeppurple.com

























Fresh from her performance at Glastonbury Kylie Minogue treats us to a collection of 20 selected hits including her classic duets with Jason Donovan and Robbie Williams. The diminutive Aussie Pop Princess always delivers. Available in multiple formats including picture disc though I chose to go with the light green vinyl edition.

Here's one of her hits from the latest collection to wet your appetite!





Official Website: www.kylie.com

Finally we find how the girls from Baby Metal will continue (for now) without Yui. Their new album will be released in October.



BABYMETAL

Official website: www.babymetal.com

Monday, 8 July 2019

Labour's attack on freedom of reporting















Ever since the BBC announced it was going to broadcast a Panorama special on "Anti-Semitism in the Labour Party" the Stalinist coterie around Corbyn has been having apoplectic fits about the possible content.  Allegations of bullying and the use of "Non-Disclosure Agreements" are at the centre of an on-going civil war within the Labour left.

Old Compo tweeted support for "whistle-blowers" but doesn't seem to like it when it's about...his party. Julian Assange was the same. Wikileaks dumping of info on the net led directly to the deaths of some Afghan interpreters. However when info about his own private life became public knowledge Assange cried wolf. Now it seems Labour's in danger of being seen to have covered up problems about alleged racism in it's ranks.

The Sunday Times reported (no link £):

Murphy and Milne received details of the hour-long Panorama programme last week and spent hours hunkered down in the party’s Southside headquarters. One party insider said: “They were clearly alarmed by what they saw and went into lockdown. It’s very possible that heads will roll.”

This weekend it was announced that Gordon Nardell QC, who was appointed by the party last year to help clear the backlog of outstanding anti-semitism cases, is rejoining his chambers next month. Multiple sources said he quit after the party became aware of some of the claims being made in the programme.


The Comrades are threatning legal action:

Image result for Labour legal letters on Panorama




One wonders what they have to hide.

Anti-Semitism is the "only" acceptable form of racism on the left. After all the Jews, erm Zionists control the media, the banks and are all apparently rich. I wish I was rich but still I'm happy in my tower block on an inner city estate with a small pension.....

An example of how the racists on the left see Jews. All pawns of Zionism, Mossad and Israel. All very National Socialist wouldn't you say, but then us Jews don't understand your "British irony"do we Jeremy Corbyn.




















Watch Panorama BBC 1: Wednesday 9:00. 
The programme Labour want to suppress.

Sunday, 7 July 2019

PCS: Janice Godrich arrested for stabbing

Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (Scotland).svg


The mystery of former PCS union President Janice Godrich's withdrawal from the hotly contested Assistant General Secretary election in the union surface in a report published in the Daily Record on Friday:

A wife knifed her partner of almost 30 years after a row about her drinking.

Union activist Janice Godrich, 56, picked up a six-inch kitchen knife before stabbing Daniel Williamson through his forearm following an argument over booze.

Paisley Sheriff Court heard Godrich, who struggles with her mental health, then nipped outside their home for a cigarette as cops raced to the scene in the town’s Corsebar Road....

An argument ensued between the parties about the level of the accused’s drinking.

“This resulted in both parties becoming extremely angry and they began shouting at each other.

“The complainer said he wanted to end their relationship.

“At which point the accused left the living room and went into the kitchen where she picked up a six-inch black-handled kitchen knife from the worktop.

“She returned to the living room, approached the complainer, stood at the settee with the knife in her hand and struck the accused on his body.

“As he raised his arm to protect himself, the knife struck the complainer on his forearm.”


Godrich has been referred at her pre-trial for reports. Her fate will be decided at her full trial on August 8th.

Friday, 5 July 2019

PCS: Hell hath no fury like the Socialist Party scorned!

PCS Broad Left Network


The Socialist Party or Militant, at least the larger fragment of it has been a major controlling force in the PCS for nearly two decades. That is until PCS Supremo and General Secretary Mark Serwotka got tired of his troublesome deputy one Chris Baugh and ran a campaign to remove him. This as regular readers will know led to a major split in PCS with the bulk of the SP's leading activists splitting to form PCS Socialist View.

In the subsequent internal squabbles of the Broad Left tent of which both Socialist View and the Socialist Party but not Serwotka were a part Baugh initially lost and only narrowly returned as the "agreed candidate" of the far-left alliance. The subsequent 3-way election which included a Serwotka lick-spittle saw Baugh lose and the Independent Left candidate take the post of Assistant General Secretary.

The Socialist Party are a somewhat unforgiving little sect, getting smaller by the day as they continue to shed their international allies (see Phil BC's Obsolete politics and Socialist Party) and have the audacity to complain about "union officialdom" without noticing the irony.  The SP were the unions bureaucracy ensconced in full time posts galore with the ear of Dear leader Sir Mark Vodka himself.

Now they are sidelined with just 2 members of the National Executive and fewer activists on the ground. Militants head honcho and unchallenged leader for centuries Peter Taffe had to be sent to PCS conference to rally the sects remaining adherents.

Now we see a new faction arising out of the ashes of the old. As Mark Serwotka announced his decision to remain General-Secretary-for-life reelection campaign the old Militants are to stand against him by running Maid Marion Lloyd against him. Baugh it seems is too tainted to use and the comrades have decided that Left Unity isn't very "wimmin friendly".

Socialist Party logo

The Socialist rag complains:

Serwotka and his supporters in Left Unity claim concerns about the under-representation of women in the union. They line up behind the slogan of 'Step Aside Brother' - a top-down, artificial process. But even within the limitations of this approach their commitment is shown to be a complete sham.

At the June national executive committee Socialist Party member Marion Lloyd was removed from the union's key lay body - the policy and resources committee.

At the Midlands regional committee in June they challenged Sian Ruddock for the chair position with a male Socialist Workers Party member.

At the Department for Work and Pensions committee meeting in June they removed Rachel Heemskerk from the PCS trade union-side team, resulting in an all-male delegation.


Nothing to with sex, just a purge of the Socialist Party methinks. More sectarian than sexist really "comrades" but by all means use all weapons at your disposal to undermine your erstwhile allies.

The new faction has somehow developed a twitter link established in 2009 with a few thousand followers which means they've hijacked something or had access to the Tardis to set up a faction before any of this happened. Their Face book page is probably more accurate in terms with just 111 followers at the time of writing.

The Socialist Party now campaigns for "an independent voice for PCS", that is themselves and want a "Corbyn led government" except they won't join the others in the labour Party and even the Labour left laughed at the suggestion by SP guru Taffe for an electoral alliance.

Politics aside Marion Lloyd is quite a personable individual but a committed disciple of the Taffe Tendency. She won't beat Serwotka even if she gets the backing of Left Unity which is by no means certain even if there isn't another candidate. Left Unity will probably decide to back Serwotka.  This could mean another three way split though it is far less likely an Independent Left candidate will sneak through like in the AGS election.

Monday, 1 July 2019

Blogging not going to plan?

When I retired I always imagined I'd be busy blogging everyday on both this and my comics blog. Mind you I also thought I'd be doing other things that I never seemed to have the time to do whilst working including watching films during the day both on TV and at the cinema.  Things haven't gone to plan as I retired early due to serious illness which has left me unable to do certain things like sit through a film in the local multiplex.

That coupled with the state of British politics has left me bored shitless with what's happening in the UK.  The thought of Boris or Corbyn running this country fills me with dread. Neither are suitable let alone capable of steering us through Brexit.  The political parties have failed.

I devote more time to listening to music and developing new culinary skills with Indian, Chinese and Middle Eastern recipe books. I've even got lazy with reading. I have a pile of books and a pile of comics and annuals to read which means I have to think about reorganising myself a wee bit.

Trouble is I have this habit of dozing off in the armchair no matter what the time of day. It takes me ages to listen to my Doctor Who audio adventures as a result. In fact I already feel like a nap and both the cat and the missus will need feeding soon......

Still there was Glastonbury on TV not that I liked a lot of it. The modern British music scene is dire in my opinion which is why I listen to Planet Rock and Radio Caroline for good tunes..from the past though some new album music does get played.

I cannot see the attraction of the fake "radical" Stormzy or his music. Even The Charlatans a band I do like let us down with a dire performance though I was impressed with Jeff Goldblum's jazz  band. Then of course there was the pop Princess herself, Kylie Minogue whose set made up for so much crap all weekend.

One band that appeared and I sadly missed was Baby Metal from Japan. Big fan me. The Japanese music scene is actually quite vibrant and regular readers will have noticed I do post more than a few videos of Japanese artists. Today is no exception, so whilst I get my thinking cap back on to blog a bit more here's a new song from the girls.....



Friday, 28 June 2019

Weekending..

It's not often I feel sorry for cyclists. I generally see them as a pain in the neck but when one was lumbered with a legal bill for nigh on a hundred grand for knocking into a woman who crossed the road without looking staring at her mobile phone (another of my pet hates) I did think that was wrong.  People are raising money for him, most of which goes in legal fees to the bloody lawyers rather than the so-called "victim" who just wanted to fix her teeth.

Frankly cyclists and zombies walking down the street staring into their phones oblivious to the world around them are two modern menaces which I have noticed even more since becoming disabled. Cyclists on the pavement and jumping traffic lights should be fined. They are road not pavement users. They don't seem to think the Highway Code applies to them.

I actually find car users far more helpful when trying to cross the road especially if there isn't a zebra crossing in sight. More than a few will stop and allow me to cross safely. Cyclists still blitz passed, one nearly knocked me over. Other than calling him/her a cunt there was little else I could do. Time to give these bastards some form of number plate so we can report them.

Mobile users are less of a problem though when they have headphones it is often necessary to ask them to move especially when I'm on the bus. Why do people insist on standing around the bloody door especially when there's plenty of seats. I have learned the hard way that using a four-wheel walker means avoiding the rush hour is better for me . Less people about. Better to shop and use banks whilst people are at work.

Meanwhile there remains a blank spot in my now totally free mornings. No Jeremy Kyle to watch. I know why it was taken off the air, sadly someone committed suicide but I can't help but feel a certain hypocrisy as Love Island (which I've never seen) continues despite two suicides. Given the tiny number of participants who have appeared on Love Island that's quite a high percentage compared to one out of the twenty thousand who have appeared on Jeremy Kyle's show.

Don't get me wrong it's sad anyone feels they have to kill themselves but there seems to be a certain hypocrisy in all this. Lots of people have condemned the Jeremy Kyle Show for being what it is. Most of them middle class snobs who like to control what us proles watch on daytime TV.

There's much less concern about those good looking people parading around mostly naked on a tropical island than the unwashed ill educated lumpen-proletarians with rotten teeth who spend twenty minutes on a stage shouting at each other.

Morality? Whose morality are we talking about? Everyone has their own moral standards. I wouldn't ban either programme, though would enforce strong aftercare on the participants of both shows.

As for the validity of "lie detectors" these are well known to not always be accurate but don't seem to have failed often on Jeremy's watch. Usually the culprits fess up anyway as if we didn't know they were lying in the first place.

And at the end off the day no one is forced to go on either of these shows and whilst I can see the attraction of Love Island which could lead to earning lots of dosh I have always failed to see why people want to air their very dirty laundry on TV at 9:30 in the morning. Still it's a free country.

And finally....some "new" music, at least it's from a new album by Ena Fujita, a gravure model. horror movie actress and singer song writer. This number is actually the theme tune to  Japanese TV series Arita Generation. Sadly her album, Iromono is only available in the UK in digital format. Her previous "mini album" Bikini Riot (which I do have) is still available check out JPU Records who distribute a number of Japanese bands in the UK including Scandal, Lovebites, Aldious and Ladybaby.

Note: It's blocked here so click on the link they provide to watch on You Tube. 



Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Labours anti-Semitism problem deepens....

In shocking news this afternoon it appears that Chris Williamson has been re-admitted to the Labour Party with a "written warning" for being "in breach of party rules". The move forced through by Keith Vaz himself a disgraced MP was purely because Williamson represents a "marginal seat" and Labour is forcing through measures to reselect it's MP's ahead of an anticipated general election.

Chris Williamson readers may recall claimed that "Labour had done more against racism than any other party" and should stop being apologetic over charges of anti-Semitism. It is clear that Williamson's re-admittance rather than face full disciplinary charges as recommended by Labour Staff is an insult to this countries Jewish Community.

Keith Vaz is a disgrace who should be kicked out of the party with Williamson.

Meanwhile Labour Against Anti-Semitism (LAAS) has issued the following statements over holocuast denying in Labour circles:



Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Labour: The Purge Begins!






















The fate of Labour's MP's is now formally to be considered by the party following the decision of their National Executive Committee to ascertain the "intentions" of sitting MP's. The far-left are about to launch a purge of as many non-conforming members of parliament as they can.

I just loved the friendly and quite impersonal tone of the letter to people who have been working for the Labour Party for decades in some cases. Not very nice at all. Similar letters sent to employees in the civil service when I was working caused outrage and protests from the unions.

This is the moment Momentum has been waiting for as the largest organised force inside the Labour Party. How many will go or stay will be the main fight inside the party between now and the general election. It will be a fight for the very soul of Labour which has been hijacked by Communists misleading Utopians.

Could a massive purge be at hand? How will Tom Watson and his opposition react? They will fight for survival but many will lose and then there will be decisions to be made. Accept defeat or fight on under a new banner.

Monday, 24 June 2019

Party Political Speech....

If there is one thing I can say without (almost) fear of contradiction is that British politics is in crisis and has become bloody boring mainly due to the two "B's", Brexit and Boris. Never a day goes by these days without either of these two being referenced in the news. Sick of it I am.

It's one of the reasons my blogging has been erratic to say the least over the last couple of weeks. Heck I've even started listening to the BBC World Service news and buying the occasional copy of the international edition of The New York Times to get away from these two.

And failed today. There's an article in The New York Times today by a Brit, Tanya Gold of Harpers Magazine something I've never read. Tanya doesn't think much of Boris and wrote an excellent hatchet job on the twat. Brexit gets a mention which is hardly surprising since Boris jumped on the bandwagon in his desire to become Prime Minister.

Personally I don't think he is suitable for such a high post. Boris is intelligent to a large degree but has untidy thinking and frankly isn't the most honest of people. Say what you like about Theresa May who did try her best but was shafted by "those bastards" that John Major once warned us about but at least she had some decency.

Then there's that quisling fool Corbyn and his Stalinist coterie still ensconced in the Labour Party avoiding what he always said the party should do listen to it's members and act. He hasn't. Labour members are mainly remainers and want a second referendum especially those younguns' that joined up for something different. Old Compo remains as he always has been, staunchly anti-EU.

Then there's the anti-Semitism crisis. It's got so beyond a joke even I've cut down on the amount I either read or post about here or on Facebook. Labour is not for the many or for the Jew. 

So thank-god for alternative news programmes on the BBC World Service. I can hear about coup attempts in Ethiopia, Indigenous peoples campaigns to defend their environment. Greenland is at the forefront of this campaign as the ice melts. There's things going on in the Sudan and Mauritania where the Defence Minister has won the election for President despite his opponents calling foul over electoral fraud.

Which reminds me Erdogan got buggered over his recalling an election in Istanbul. Hopefully this will be the beginning of the end for him and his corrupt so-called Islamist Party who rely on religious bigotry & fanaticism to cover their money and power grabbing.

And if you get bored of that there's always Radio 4 Extra with it's Morcombe and Wise Radio Show's adaptions of Dad's Army and much else to do with British comedy & drama it has to be said. June Whitfield plays Miss Marple on the radio version of those stories.

But still, left hand down a bit. Here's a party broadcast by Peter Sellers on behalf of politicians everywhere....


Friday, 21 June 2019

In Defence of Equality in Birmingham Schools: Public Meeting 27th June

Southall Black Sisters


Southall Black Sisters joins Feminist Dissent in a show of solidarity with schools in Birmingham and elsewhere that are struggling courageously against religious fundamentalist led mobilisations. These protests have nothing to do with religious freedom and everything to do with undermining the equality principle and capturing education for political power.

Please show your support by attending the public meeting and /or signing the statement by SBS and Feminist Dissent.

Public Meeting 27th June 7pm Birmingham

Thu, 27 June 2019 19:00 – 21:30 

Main Meeting House
The Priory Rooms
40 Bull Street
Birminghham
B4 6AF


About This Event

Since the beginning of April 2019, abusive and intimidating protests have taken place outside Anderton Park Primary school in Sparkhill, Birmingham. The focus of the protest is the work the school has done to incorporate the 2010 Equalities Act into the life of the school, particularly the way it has positively addressed issues of LGBT equality. The spotlight was turned on Anderton Park after similar protests about the ‘No Outsiders’ programme at Parkfield School in Alum Rock were brought to a halt.

While the work at Anderton Park has sought to teach equality, challenge stereotypes, reduce discrimination and prejudice, protest leaders claim that LGBT inclusive lessons mean that children are being ‘sexualised’, a deliberate falsehood which characterises the misinformation on which their campaign is based.

While some Muslim parents have joined the protest, the protest leaders appear to be part of a Fundamentalist Muslim movement, with the clear intention of seeking to impose their ultra-conservative political agenda on the curriculum within Muslim communities, and within schools in Muslim majority areas. As well as misinforming parents about what is taking place at local schools, they have sought to intimidate anyone who disagrees with them and to garner the support of fundamentalists in other religions, as well as racists like the journalist Katie Hopkins. Despite months of this aggressive campaign, Anderton Park School has refused to bow to this patriarchal and homophobic pressure.

This public meeting has been called by ‘Feminist Dissent’ and the South Asian LGBT group ‘Finding A Voice’ to show solidarity with the brave stand taken by the school, and to call on all schools to continue in their duty to teach about all equalities and encourage a non-discriminatory and inclusive school environment. We must not allow these narrow, divisive and bigoted voices to define the education our children receive.

Panel Details:

Chair: Pragna Patel  Speakers: Jess Philips MP, Khakan Qureshi, Saima Razzaq, Sarah Hewitt-Clarkson and Stephen Cowden.

------------------------------------

Jess Phillips is a Labour MP who was elected to Parliament to represent Birmingham Yardley in 2015 and re-elected in 2017. Before being elected Jess worked for Women’s Aid, supporting female victims of domestic abuse.

Khakan Qureshi is the founder of Birmingham South Asians LGBT – Finding A Voice – Birmingham’s first independent non-funded social/support group for South Asians who identify as LGBTQI+ regardless of faith and culture. He is also Co-administrator for British Asians LGBTI and Gay Muslims United and serves on the multi-faith advisory panel for the National “Impact on Faith and Sexuality”. He is also a speaker writer and activist and was shortlisted for the British LGBT Awards 2019 and listed in the Top 100 LGBT on The Independent Rainbow List 2015.

Saima Razzaq is the co-founder of SEEDS (Supporting the Education of Equality and Diversity in Schools) a campaigning group set-up in the light of recent protests outside schools. Saima is also the founder of Birmingham’s only floating hotel. She is also involved in filmmaking and volunteers for Hidayah, a support and social welfare organisation for LGBTQI+ Muslims.

Sarah Hewitt-Clarkson is the Headteacher of Anderton Park School in Sparkhill, Birmingham. She is a passionate Brummie, mother, Shakespeare fan and a warrior for equality. She provides training to many schools and other organisations on Equality of the Sexes and the importance of dismantling stereotypes. She studied Philosophy at university in the late 80s. She loves a good quote. ‘Lord, we know what we are but not what we may be ‘.

Stephen Cowden
is a member of the Feminist Dissent Collective. He works at Coventry University where he researches the impact of religious fundamentalism on social policy.

Pragna Patel is a founding member and director of Southall Black Sisters’ advocacy and campaigning centre. She has been centrally involved in some of SBS’ most important cases and campaigns around domestic violence, immigration and religious fundamentalism. She is also a member of Feminist Dissent and has written extensively on race, gender and religion.

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

New Music: Ladybaby

Apologies to readers for posts being a bit tardy of late. A lot of distractions and rethinking going on at the moment but music still plays large in my mind! Normal service will be resumed shortly.

In the meantime here's a number from the Japanese band Ladybaby who first came to my attention when they were a novelty act when Ladybeard (a cross dressing Aussie wrestler) was a member. They were shall we say bizarre but oddly entertaining. There is only one of the original girls left, Rie Keneko, who is joined by three others Nana Ikeda Emily Arima and Fuka Karasawa in the latest lineup of the band.

This style of music is defined as "kawaii metal" in Japan as a fusion of metal and J-Pop.

See what you think.



Go to their official website for more information: https://www.ladybaby-fc.com/

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

The Liberals cannot achieve change on their own

Liberal Democrats logo.svg


Since the ascendancy of Corbynism inside Labour thousands of members have left and similar numbers have ceased supporting the Party. Most remain unaffiliated though some did gravitate to the new centre part Change Uk which has now found itself in hiatus as the organisation has to go through another name change and has lost six of it's eleven MP's one of which has joined the Liberal Democrats.

His decision came as little suppose though did cause some bemusement amongst his erstwhile colleagues in both the Labour and Change UK parties.  Chuka has obviously decided that since Change UK did not take off in the Euro-elections his chance of remaining an MP resided in becoming a Liberal Democrat.

A number of people have followed him though  at the time of writing none of the other "Independent" MP's have done so though Heidi Allen is widely expected to do so. Liberal Democrat activists, including a number of the newly converted have been extolling the need to join the Liberal Democrats on every Change UK platform they can get on.

Several of these individuals have been excluded and others told that these forums are not for recruiting to other parties and that includes the Liberal Democrats. One or two remain. Some quietly some biding their time for what can only be described as sectarian intervention.

Mike Gapes was forced to call out a Lib Dem activist for that reason a couple of days back though the culprit later "apologised" and others say he did not speak in their name there is a definite co-ordinated train of though from a section of their party who are determined to undermine Change UK and recruit.

Even Chuka decided to state upon his appointment to a leading role amongst the Liberal Democrats much depleted ranks of MP's to state that he now thinks there is no room for another centre party, a comment aimed squarely against his former comrades in Change UK . Such a statement would no doubt have been cleared by his new superiors amongst the Lib Dem grandees. 

Those remaining in and around Change UK still number in the thousands though no doubt with the split and lack of internal organisation are disillusioned. However many, if not the largest proportion of these will be ex-Labour members or supporters. The Liberal Democrats accuse them of "tribalism" or "intellectual" sectarianism in their attempts to woo over waverers.

What the Lib Dem's need to realise is that ex-Labour members are not "Liberals" and never have been, or will be. They are social democrats a qualitatively different political tradition. In addition many will have had run-ins with the Lib Dems in local politics where the Liberals are quite often far from the picture they like to portray of themselves.

Then there is the coalition. Besides the innate hostility to the Conservative Party that many hold and that government in particular the mistrust remains. Now in my case I accept that the Liberal Democrats were numerically the only group in a position to bring a majority government to this country. Labour just did not have enough seats. They should have delivered support on the basis of certain policies being delivered rather than a formal coalition.

Two issue blighted them. Tuition Fees and proportional Representation. They sold out on both despite promises and long time campaigning. They allowed the Tories to propose a PR system that even the Liberals didn't want so it was lost. Bad moves on their part.

Now the Liberals were punished by the electorate but times have moved on and their support has indeed risen. For now. It's still only 19% in the polls but enough to ensure a greater number of Lib Dem MP's to get elected if they maintain their level of support.

It is unlikely that the Liberal Democrats will ever be in a position to form a government on their own. In order for the main two parties to be challenged one of them needs to decline. The Tories are more likely to pull together than Labour which remains fiercely divided. For the time being Labour remains unified and the recent experience of Change UK will not look appetising to the bulk of MP's who oppose the far left.

The need for another centre party is predicated on the need to organise the former Labour Party members and perhaps some "one nation" conservatives none of whom are likely to join the Liberal Democrats. In the short term this will be an extremely difficult task.

It will need a very long term project to bring a new party in the centre of political affairs with members on the ground and organised around constituency associations or parties. This will require patience from both those who choose to participate and an end to the undermining of the project by Liberal Democrat activists unsanctioned or otherwise.

The Liberals are not new and there are ideological reasons why so many will need to be organised separately. The Liberal Democrats must be reminded that they cannot achieve power alone, especially if they are committed to proportional representation which by it's nature will lead to a multi-party system

Saturday, 15 June 2019

Golden Oldie on a Saturday: Terry - Twinkle

After a disappointing couple of weeks on the political front I thought it time not just for a short musical break but one with some interesting related trivia.  This song from Twinkle (Lynn Ripley) reached number 4 in 1964 and was her sole hit.

This single was banned on BBC Radio and ITV's Ready Steady Go but not by Top of the Pops. The song was championed by the pirate Radio stations London and Caroline. Twinkle was apparently the only female pop star ever to be allowed to stay overnight on Radio Carolines ship Mi Amigo!

Her pop career failed after her second single Golden Lights reached just number 21 and the other four failed to chart. However Lynn went on to marry that chap from the Milk Tray advert. Sadly Lynn died of cancer at the age of 66 in 2015.

Twinkle will be remembered not just for this song but as the image of the sixties woman.


Friday, 14 June 2019

Change UK in trouble

















Change UK has been in news but not in a good way.  Former Labour/Change/Independent MP Chuka Umunna has finally joined the Liberal Democrats not that surprises anyone. This will help him keep his seat in Streatham where the local Labour Party has been infested by Momentum who drove him out of Labour. Frankly if I lived in Streatham I would vote for him as the Labour candidate will be one of the Corbyn cult.

It's rumoured that Heidi Allen former leader of Change UK is also considering a similar move and at least one of the other six "independent" MPs will go with her.

Change UK has been in crisis since it's failure to make any impact in the Euro elections which is why the six MPs split away. Frankly the main reason for Chaneg UK's failure so far is because no organisation was ever established on the ground. It has no members. Supporters can only donate. Hardly a healthy basis for a new party.

Even now though one of the MPs (I forget who) has been charged with setting up membership there is still nothing. In fact the only e-mail of late has been about yet another set back because of legal action over the name of the party:

We’re determined to do politics differently – which also means being transparent and straightforward with you as our supporters.

You may recall that lawyers for the company Change.Org disputed our right to register as ‘Change UK’ with the Electoral Commission ahead of the European elections.

Change.org said they would sue each of our MPs individually unless we signed a legal agreement that would prevent the permanent use of the name Change UK. With no time left to register a new party name ahead of those European elections, our leadership at the time felt we had no option but to agree.

Change.org say we must register a different name by 15th June or we as individuals risk being taken to court by them. We have asked them for more time to find a solution, but sadly they insist we must alter our name without delay or face legal action.

So that is why today we are making a formal application to the Electoral Commission proposing to amend our registered name to be ‘The Independent Group for Change’ and we now await the Electoral Commission’s decision on this.

This situation reflects the difficulties that new and smaller political parties can encounter. Of course, this does not in any way alter our determination to build and grow as a political party and movement. Our values and the reasons we founded our party remain the same.

That is why with the Conservatives leaning further towards their right-wing and Labour lurching to the left, we will continue to focus on the biggest challenges for our country, changing Britain’s broken politics and avoiding a disastrous no deal Brexit.


I have to say the name doesn't help the party's cause at all. It's messy.The window of opportunity for a new centre party around Change UK is steadily fading.

A number of Liberal Democrats have been trolling Change UK's unofficial Facebook groups. There are three of these and it's caused much ill-feeling towards the Liberal which includes myself even though I am prepared to have some kind of electoral arrangement with them come a General Election.

There does remain a need for a new centre party but time is running out for this project though it shouldn't be written off quite yet.

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**Before anyone writes in saying the tweet is fake. I know but it amused me to take the piss out of Chuka so it stays.

Wednesday, 12 June 2019

Boris: A short trip to power?


Photo:By Arp (Image Number 6514 at Mushroom Observer)

The election for the new leader of the Conservative Party has turned out to be slightly more interesting than originally anticipated as several candidates admit to drug taking. Makes them all seem a little more human, especially in Michael Gove's case which I thought would be particularly difficult.

As for Boris we still have no idea though I amuse myself with the notion he might have eaten a few magic mushrooms which might explain his bizarre behaviour.  Still old "shagger Johnson" has a reputation of his own.

The front runner of course is of course Boris. He may get a serious challenger but short of making a major blunder that upsets his core Tory supporters I still think he is likely to win by a mile. Pity really given his desire for a No Deal Brexit which would be a bloody disaster. Tax cuts are the least of our worries.

Polls are suggesting that Boris would easily beat Corbyn's Labour Party and undermine the Brexit Party completely. The Liberal Democrats would have a modest revival and Labour will continue to eat itself.

Regrettably the more level headed Tory candidates Rory Stewart and my own preferred choice, Sajid Javid are not serious contenders inside the Tory party or the country as a whole.  I regret to say whilst London may be ready for a Muslim Mayor, the country is not which is a pity as Javid is a much better politician and role model than Khan will ever be.

Still maybe next time...

Monday, 10 June 2019

Difficulties of organising the political centre



I took a break from blogging over the weekend (though not from discussions on Facebook) to both rest after a difficult week politically and gather my thoughts after the split in Change UK. That this has caused difficulties and undermined the project at hand is of course undeniable. The main steam media and our opponents on line have been gloating at what they see as the end of a short lived party.

That many have given up or joined the Liberal Democrats has been obvious from the three Change UK Facebook groups I belong to. The Lib Dems have been trolling trying to recruit even before the departure of the six MPs. Slowly these individuals have been given the proverbial boot or muted as in the case of one particularly odd individual Marx de Morais who having joined the Liberal Democrats is establishing a TIG faction in it. Not many takers I gather but the Lib Dems may live to regret recruiting this bloke.

I have appealed for people to hold the line as we have been sent an e-mail by the remaining MP's which states quite clearly that the organisation is to be formally established with membership and policy groups. Providing this proceeds with due haste there remains a chance that we can salvage the situation though it will now be more difficult to establish the group as a serious contender than before.

However I'm up for it and so are more than a few others from what I see on social media so it is going to be worth a try.

However I have been involved in organising a moderate/centre political grouping before I am well aware of the problems involved. For all of my working life I was involved in the civil service unions which merged changed names and eventually became PCS which I belonged to until a year before I retired.

PCS is led by Mark Serwotka a hard left activist in conjunction with an alliance of activists from the various far-left groupings including the Socialist Party (Militant), Socialist Workers Party, Communist Party, Socialist Appeal and Labour left-wingers. There was a time when I was involved in this milieu in the days of the CPSA even very briefly serving as National Organiser of the CPSA Broad Left when I was a member of the Socialist league (IMG for older readers).

Promotion ended that quite quickly but I learnt first hand how sectarian Militant (as they were called then) was in relation not just to other socialists but had little interest in the members except as tools for their political purposes. Like all Marxists they care about the amorphous "class" but not a jot about the individual or his or her rights within that class so long as the "right" line was enforced.

Fast forward by the end of the eighties I had broken with the left which isn't that easy. All sorts of relationships and friendships had been predicated on a political basis for over a decade. Eventually it became a total wrench to move away both physically and mentally. I can only liken my feelings during that period as akin to the Catholic "guilt complex" that others might understand.

Eventually this led me into conflict with the far-left but other than argue with the SWP et al at Branch level I needed to find others of my ilk. That eventually came after the collapse of the National Moderate Group in the CPSA/PCS after an ill thought out (and frankly undemocratic) attempt to oust the newly elected General Secretary Mark Serwotka.

A new grouping arose which eventually became called 4themembers which was a nice branding and allowed for a house style of bulletins and newsletters. By chance rather than inclination I became the groups National Secretary for almost the entire existence of the group. It was never a large grouping and had a network of at most 150 activists at it's peak but declined over the years as people retired.

Despite issuing weekly e-mails (sometimes more)  called 4TM Notes & Updates to supporters and our periphery there were always only a limited number willing to actually do things. Everybody had an idea of what I should be doing as National Secretary (despite everything I was doing) but didn't volunteer themselves.

Now trade union factions are qualitatively different to political parties. There was a limited PCS membership which due to both cuts and people just leaving was continually declining and the pool of activists attracted to the group limited especially as our reach was restricted. Eventually both events and arguments led to the decline and demise of 4themembers.

Firstly our numbers declined as key activists in friendly branches started retiring in numbers that effected the groups operations whilst other left with new jobs or on exit schemes, An argument of how the group was to be organised resulted in a split between the three of us who held the group together. I resisted attempts (rightly or wrongly) to go to a membership based organisation preferring a loose network organised via social media as physical meetings proved too small to represent the groups decisions.

I did publish an internal bulletin, 4Discussion which ran for 62 issues (going public as of #27) which allowed quite in depth debate and for the network itself a voting process around a separate bulletin 4Decision. However this was not enough and there reached a time when  I was unable to organise a slate of candidates that could even have a majority on the unions NEC even if elected.

4TM never managed more than 4 NEC members at any one time and more often than not just had the one. Even a merger with the remains of the old National Moderate Group failed to change our electoral fortunes.

It was at this point I felt the organisation had become untenable. The group was now too small and with no recruitment in the civil service that was not about to change. I decided to quit the group in 2014 which collapsed a year later. The problem has always been that people with moderate views are not always prepared to give up as much time as hard-left activists and ordinary members gradually disconnected with the internal affairs of the union.

Membership of the PCS union is now at an all time low as a result of the hard-left control and their failed policies. The opposition has ceased to exist. Barely 10% voted in the recent election for Serwotka's deputy and only around 7% in the largest section of the union in the PCS.

There was a battle with the hard left that eventually wore me down and despite remaining an annoyance with my e-mail lists and eventually this blog which Serwotka tried to censor on one occasion I felt time was up and joined the Prospect union instead. A modern union led by proper trade unionists not political activists sadly my involvement was cut short by an aneurysm and subsequent retirement.

The takeover by the Labour Party by the sort of activists typified by Serwotka and his cronies is the reason I cannot abide the thought of a Labour led government. These people are not just duplicitous and dangerous they are also incompetent on every issue you can think of. We need a new centre party that is an alternative to the Labour party which is strong on the economy, on welfare and defence.

If "One Nation" Tories can be persuaded to join us that's fine to but I'm not a bleeding heart Liberal.  An electoral arrangement fine but Change UK is needed as a distinct and separate party. It will be difficult but I'm up for the challenge and ready to report for duty.

Friday, 7 June 2019

Peterborough: The worst of all possible results?


Outline map

The result of the by-election in Peterborough was never going to be my taste. It seemed like a two-horse race between the Brexit Party and Labour who already held the seat. The possibility that this might revert to the Conservatives was highly unlikely though they polled better than expected.

In the end Labour won with a small majority with a candidate who has distasteful views on Jews and it's not just anti-Zionism when she "likes" a post that accuses the prime Minister Theresa May of having "Zionist slave masters". Such wild eyed conspiracy theories are the realms of Nazi's and other anti-Semites especially in the Islamist world.

Corbyn was already cooing on TV this morning as he gets a boost to his otherwise failing leadership.  Praising his new acolyte who survived against the odds despite the racism demonstrated in her social social media likes he avoided answering a question about a second referendum by waffling on about  general election that the Tories are not going to risk at this stage.

It's total hypocrisy that his supporters who have spent the last few years trying to enforce their views on reluctant MP's in the name of "democratic accountability" and want a second referendum are not demanding the same from Corbyn. It shows the left is not as democratic as it claims to be not that anyone outside their rarefied circles ever believed that.

The ability of the Labour Party machine to throw so many activists into the maelstrom is something they will not be able to repeat at the next general election. It also has to be said that the large local Muslim community also rallied to Labour's cause. 

I shed no tears over the defeat of Nigel Farage who stormed out of the count when he realised he lost . The one-issue Brexit Party has no organisation on the ground and couldn't match Labour's ability to deliver voters on the doorstep.

The Tories were down (mainly due to the Brexit Party) but were not out coming third. The two main Remain parties returned to their normal positions lower down the feeding order. This was not natural territory for either "remainers" or the Liberal Democrats.

The Renew Party which I backed yesterday polled appallingly with a mere 45 votes. The window of opportunity for a new party including Change UK did not exist in Peterborough and is a lesson that the organisation must take note of if it is to survive in the coming months.

Thursday, 6 June 2019

Peterborough by Election: Vote Renew Party Today (Endorsed by Change UK)



The by-election in Peterborough takes place today. There are 15 candidates standing and since Change UK is not standing the party has endorsed the Renew Party candidate Peter Ward.

Renew co-operated with Change UK during the Euro-elections and several candidates on our list were from Renew including their leader Annabelle Mullins.

Renew

Peter will be a passionate advocate for diversity, the environment and sustainability for Peterborough. His story as a community champion for tolerance and a barrister specialising in anti-discrimination law is a great example of how Renew is helping people from outside politics to give voters an exciting new choice at the ballot box.

Renew launched in late 2017 as a vehicle for ordinary people supporting radical political reform. We currently have a shortlist of over 120 candidates nationwide ready to run at the next general election. All are ordinary people ready to put ideology aside to achieve the practical political reform that we need.

More information on Renew from their website: www.renewparty.org.uk

Wednesday, 5 June 2019

An Appeal to Change UK Supporters

When Change UK was launched I was one of thousands who signed up as a result on the opportunity being given to break with the major political parties. No one said it would be easy especially as the bulk of the MPs we needed to defect from Labour hung on then and are hanging on now despite the growing threat of a coup against Tom Watson for building an opposition group around him.

Many Labour MP's face deselection from Corbynite extremists. Meanwhile moderate and pro-European Conservative MP's are facing deselection by a move to the right in many constituency parties led by many who were previously in UKIP. When three Tory MP's joined the group my hope rose further. The time was at hand to build a new centre party.

Of course yesterdays split by six MP's has been a major blow to this project and many supporters have given up already with others joining the Lib Dems. However they are not a centre party but an alternative party on the left in my view. A mixture of sandals and anti-Trident views that are not to my taste I am not a Liberal.

I stand in the tradition of Clem Attlee and Harold Wilson bringing social justice and resisting both fascism and communism in equal measure.  Parties change and people change, needs change. That's why I joined Change UK because what we need a return to the level headed political centre. Strong on social justice, strong on defence and strong on the economy.

Ex Labour or ex Conservative we are none of us "Liberals", we are something different who will offer something different to the people of this country. We have made errors, we have stalled in our work, however the need for Change UK still exists. We can survive this setback,. We can move forward against the established parties. It will take time. It will be far from easy. We will argue. We will fret. We will sweat. But in the end it will be worth the effort as over  the coming months and years a new party develops to replace the old.

Politics remains broken. We have been set back but we can fix this. Let's build a new party and fix this country.

Tuesday, 4 June 2019

Statements on Change UK

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Editorial

Following the publication of my previous post urging the Change UK group of MP's to stick with the programme it seems the wishes of most rank & file members (or should I say supporters as there is no formal organisation to belong to) are somewhat shattered by the news of a split.

The bizarre decision to become "independents" makes little sense to me given Heidi Allen's overtures to the Liberal Democrats during the Euro-elections.  However what they now do is their own concern.

What happens next is what supporters on the ground will be asking. The need for a radical party of the centre has not disappeared just because of the actions of a few. Those of us who orientated towards Change UK are not Liberals or we would have gone straight to them. There are thousands of ex-Labour Party members and a good few "One Nation" Conservatives out there looking for a new home. There are others who like myself just want something new.

How this will develop over the next weeks will remain to be seen. The new leader must turn to the task of creating a membership based organisation with constituency organisations as a matter of priority.

This blog will continue to support Change UK and keep readers informed of developments. The game is afoot!

Statement from Change UK MPs

Challenging the established political parties was never going to be easy. But we remain determined to fix Britain’s broken politics and we are in this for the long haul.

You may have heard the news that some of our MPs group have decided to leave Change UK, which is saddening and disappointing just at the moment we need to roll up our sleeves, challenge the Brexit emergency and champion sensible evidence-based policy-making in the face of the main parties drifting to the ideological fringes.

We regret their decision, but it is vital we continue to lead and look forward to future elections – and get started on building our policies and party across the country.

We have a responsibility to our amazing European election candidates and 100,000 supporters and the near 600,000 people who voted for us – as well as a duty to the country – to continue this task. The British people need more than regrets about the state of our politics, they need solutions.

We are delighted that Anna Soubry has taken on the role as our new leader, and our hope is to quickly broaden out our nationwide leadership to include some of our key supporters and activists from across the country. Change UK doesn’t just belong to MPs. It belongs to the country and those looking for a sense of hope and leadership to genuinely change our politics, not simply settle for the existing party status quo.

We hope that you agree this is a cause worth fighting for – and we will need your help and support going forward. While British politics slips into chaos around us, now is the time to stand firm in our beliefs and champion the mainstream centre ground values we articulated when we left our former parties in the first place.

Best wishes

Anna Soubry
Chris Leslie
Ann Coffey
Mike Gapes
Joan Ryan

Letter sent to Change UK MPs: Do not let us down! Change UK has a future!

Reports have appeared across a number of websites indicating that there is a possible split amongst the Change UK MPs. Whilst Guido might on it's own be disregarded, the e-mail from the new Statesman and other reports cannot.

Thousands of ex-Labour Party members and more than a few "One Nation" Tories are looking for a new political home following the takeover of their respective parties by the extremes. I refuse to support a Labour Party led by incompetent old communists and anti-Semites. The need for a new party has never been greater.

This blog has committed to Change UK and will also honour the alliance with the Renew Party on Thursday in the Peterborough by-election.


Dear Change UK MPs,

A report appeared in Guido Fawkes "Order order" website declaring that splits were ahead for our fledgling party Change UK. Guido is not always to be trusted and has an agenda of his own that certainly is to say the least hostile to us . However reports are springing up in other media websites and I have just received a New Statesman e-mail which suggests a "split" or "future" of Change UK is in doubt.

Change UK has been to be polite extremely tardy in establishing itself and has existed up until now as a group of MPs with supporters donating time and money to establish a new political party without any direct ability to influence events. Given that setting up a party is a difficult enterprise in itself I and others have been patient especially as the Euro-elections needed to be fought.

That we fared badly is frankly of no surprise. Many opportunities have been lost by the failure to establish a proper organisation on the ground. We have no constituency associations or any of the normal trappings of a political party. There are still thousands of us, many including many ex-Labour Party members and others out there wanting a new political home.

We are not "Liberals" otherwise we would have joined them and cut out Change UK completely. The centre ground is more than just the Lib Dems. There are social democrats, One Nation Tories and freethinkers like myself wanting to get involved to make a difference>

I urge you you to take up the cudgel and cease any squabbling at the top table in order to start the process of building Change UK as a membership based organisation and create the necessary party that can really lead to Change in the UK.

Shalom,

Howard Fuller

(Retired Trade Unionist and Blogger)

Monday, 3 June 2019

The Star Spangled Banner flies in London

I woke up to the news on Radio 4 that the visit of US President was to face some demonstrations tomorrow. They were interviewing two women one of whom was a US Republican and then introduced as "the keeper of the Trump balloon" or some other nonsensical title. This one sounded like a 11 year old girl who should stick to reading The Bunty and having lashings of ginger beer and cake.

Trump is an individual who amazes, amuses, impresses and horrifies me in equal measure. Whatever you make of this man he doesn't give a shit which in this day and age is rather refreshing. We have got used to mealy mouthed, hypocritical and virtue signalling politicians and political activists.

It is an important state visit. Everyone has a right to protest but I fail to see the point of this demonstration. Trump is well who he is and democratically elected President of our strongest ally. It does not escape me that in three days we will be celebrating D-Day which would never have happened with the support of American soldiers, sailors and airmen who laid down their lives alongside our armies so that not just this country but Europe could be free once more.

Our "special relationship" may be a wee bit one sided (and always has been) but the USA is our ally and the strongest force in the free world. It is right we should have the strongest relations possible with the USA without becoming the "51st" state. I'm British and proud of my country and it's people. Not perfect but then no nation is or ever has been. We all sit at our keyboards freely typing today because of the sacrifices of the previous generations some of whom are still with us to return to the beaches of Normandy on Thursday.

Those that hit the streets tomorrow are led by some of the worst this country has to offer. the quislings, communists and pacifists who would overthrow or sell out our freedoms for dead ideological dreams.

Sunday, 2 June 2019

Board of Deputies of British Jews/Labour Against Anti-Semitism: Statements on Labour's Peterborough Candidate

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The Labour Party's anti-Semitism crisis never seems to end. Hot on the heels of the suspension of Peter Willsman a member of Labour's National Executive Committee for his appalling remarks and not for the first time now their candidate in Peterborough has been exposed for her racism. Her apologies are frankly transparent and not accepted by this blogger for one.

The British Board of Deputies of Jews has issued the following statement:


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Marie van der Zyl, President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, Simon Johnson, Chief Executive of the Jewish Leadership Council and David Delew, Chief Executive of the Community Security Trust, said:

“The revelation that Labour’s Peterborough candidate Lisa Forbes liked a racist Facebook post accusing Theresa May of having a “Zionist Slave Masters agenda” as recently as April – and previously welcomed a post indulging the bizarre conspiracy theory that Mossad and the CIA are behind Daesh – brings in to question her suitability for public office.

Ms Forbes has now apologised, saying she had not seen these words, but this stretches the limits of credulity, especially given the high profile problems in Labour and the previous antisemitism scandals in Peterborough Labour circles, such as Alan Bull and last November’s resignation of two senior councillors, who said they had been pressured against when trying to complain about antisemitism.

Ms Forbes also says she will seek antisemitism training. This is somewhat ironic given her previous rejection of the IHRA definition of antisemitism.

We are fed up hearing that Labour opposes antisemitism while repeatedly hearing excuses that its members accidentally missed the racism that was staring them in the face.

Unless Labour disowns Lisa Forbes as a candidate, it will only confirm the Party’s shameful descent into the racist mess for which they are now being investigated by the EHRC.”

Image result for Labour Against Anti-Semitism (LAAS)

Labour Against Anti-Semitism: Statement on Lisa Forbes, Labour Candidate for Peterborough
The revelations that Lisa Forbes, Labour candidate for the Peterborough by-election, has allegedly and repeatedly endorsed antisemitic conspiracy theories are shocking, but not surprising. Evidence also suggests she opposes the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance working definition of antisemitism. It appears to be simply par for the course in Jeremy Corbyn’s seemingly institutionally racist Labour Party, when day after day more evidence emerges of what looks like a toxic culture of prejudice and discrimination.

If Mr Corbyn was in any way interested in upholding decent British values of tolerance and fairness, he would have immediately demanded that Ms Forbes stand down as Labour candidate when this information emerged yesterday.

Instead, he travelled to Peterborough and campaigned for her in person - a tacit endorsement of her apparently appalling racist views.

We are once again witnessing an example of the Labour establishment failing to show moral leadership on the issue of anti-Jewish discrimination. Is it any wonder the Equalities and Human Rights Commission have opened a full investigation into the Labour Party? While Jeremy Corbyn and his team remain at the top of the Labour movement the entire party is charged guilty for letting down the best interests of the British public.