Friday, 28 June 2019


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
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:

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. 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. 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.


**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.


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:

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



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.


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

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.”

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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.