Political boffin, keen fisherman looking forward to retirement.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Battle for Labour's Soul

Newsnight ran an excellent piece last night relating to the growing row over Labour’s asset stripping cash. The debate between Sion Simon and John McDonnell clearly showed that this issue could become a battle for the soul of the Labour party.

What’s most interesting from a Welsh perspective is that of the figures at the heart of the scandal Sir Ronald Cohen is Gordon Brown’s equivalent of Blair’s Lord Levy.

Labour in figures in Wales are huge supporters of a Brown succession. Guilt by association therefore means that they not only favour his right wing policies, but also support his clear backing for these firms which are described as ultra capitalists.

In Wales we have already seen the Trade Unions dishing out letters to their members in support of Labour’s campaign. The irony is plain for all to see.

It’s the incoherence of the whole thing I don’t get. On the one hand you’ve got the Trade Unions throwing their formidable weight behind a Labour party in Wales that openly supports a London regime that is funded by the very sort of people the Trade Unions were set up to fight against.

Instead of peddling spin and smear for the Labour party, the Trade Union leadership in Wales should concentrate on protecting their members. My father was an Union shop steward all his working life and joined Plaid when Kinnock started the New Labour revolution and they turned their backs on working people. It’s about time the Trade Union membership rose in revolt against a docile Union Leadership in Wales whose only loyalty is to a party that has long forgotten the principles which founded it.

I have a lot of time for John McDonnell and other principled Labour MPs. The tragedy of the current make up of the Parliamentary Labour Party is that it is unlikely that John or Michael Meacher will get the necessary support to launch a leadership election against Brown.

Those of us who come from the South Wales valleys, from traditional socialist families, know that we are in our natural home with Plaid.

1 comment:

bethan said...

well said. If the values of the Labour Party have shifted so dramatically over the years, I cannot see why people remain in the party- especially trade union members. They want the labour party to represent them as workers, but until it stops promoting big business and the rich, I don't see how the labour party can even feign any socialist connections.