Dear Labour MPs and Members

Dear Labour MPs

I’m sorry that our party is in such a mess. I’m also sorry that it seems so hard to find a way forward – and I’m afraid that right now, you’re not really helping.

The thing is, Labour needs its members – so it really isn’t a viable option for you, as a parliamentary party, to either ignore what members want or to suggest that many members are somehow not really in tune with the party – suggesting that they’re all entryists, Trotskyists, or similar. There are, of course, some who are like that – but most really aren’t, and unless you understand that and pay a bit more respect to the members, the party is really in trouble.

That’s the thing – you really need to understand why so many members voted for Corbyn last year, and why, particularly, they didn’t vote for the three candidates arrayed against him. Until you understand that, and in particular that Labour members aren’t just stupid for doing so, but tap into that energy, that feeling of hope that Corbyn gave to people, then there’s little chance of your regaining the trust of the members. You need to understand why things like the abstention over welfare – even if it can be technically justified – alienated so many people, and why a principled stand is sometimes crucial even if it doesn’t make perfect parliamentary logic.

I hope that you can find a way. We really need to bring the party back together – which means members and MPs need to find a way to come back together.

With hope

Paul Bernal


Dear Labour Members

I’m sorry that our party is in such a mess. I’m also sorry that it seems so hard to find a way forward – and I’m afraid that right now, you’re not really helping.

The thing is, Labour needs its MPs – so it really isn’t a viable option for you, as a party membership, to either ignore what MPs want or to suggest that many MPs are somehow not really in tune with the party – suggesting that they’re all Blarites, Red Tories, or similar. There are, of course, some who are like that – but most really aren’t, and unless you understand that and pay a bit more respect to the MPs, the party is really in trouble.

That’s the thing – you really need to understand why so many MPs supported the vote of no confidence in Corbyn, and why, despite the clear support of the members, they still can’t really work with him. Until you understand that, and in particular that Labour MPs aren’t just stupid for doing this, but recognise why what MPs in parliament do that matters, and that MPs do work hard and are committed to the Labour Party, there’s little chance of Labour being an effective party or winning an election. You need to understand why what happens in parliament matters – even if it isn’t always clear.

I hope that you can find a way. We really need to bring the party back together – which means members and MPs need to find a way to come back together.

With hope

Paul Bernal


 

5 thoughts on “Dear Labour MPs and Members

  1. “I never quite understood what the term ‘neocon’ really meant. To my bemusement, people would say: It means the imposition of democracy and freedom, which I thought odd as a characterisation of ‘conservative’.” Tony Blair
    Do these MP’s imagine that telling lies about one of a handful of honest politicians in Westminster will give them credibility? Do they realise how ridiculous they appear to us who watch them on TV? Do none of them, obviously like Blair, realise that “The imposition of democracy and freedom” is an oxymoron? Who the hell is going to vote for these clowns, we already have a conservative party?
    cadxx

  2. At this point I don’t think the PLP and the Labour grassroots have enough common ground between them to move forward. I can’t foresee any situation in which Labour at her general election (too authoritarian) but it’s clear that if the PLP win they’ll cut the left out forever leaving much their base disenfranchised. However if Corbyn wins its likely there will be mass deselections leaving the centre and soft left labour members in the same place. (either way there will be calls for loyalty against the tories).

    And i doubt either side will make for a coherent moral vision…

  3. The mistake far too many people make is coming to a decision based on an abstract assessment of the situation, rather than looking at what’s happening at the moment and how their actions would contribute to it. If I were a Labour MP I would almost certainly prefer another leader – someone who would build on what Corbyn’s done so far while also uniting the party and throwing the media a bone from time to time – but that’s not what’s on offer, and it’s irresponsible to act as if it were.

    Borrowing from a comment I left recently at Mainly Macro:

    Nothing I’ve heard from Smith gives me any confidence in his stance on [EU] free movement, or on public services, or on austerity; he seems more hostile than welcoming to Labour’s new membership, and we know for a fact that he doesn’t observe Corbyn’s self-denying ordinance with regard to personal attacks.

    When the dust has settled some serious changes are going to be needed to the way the Labour Party works – possibly even including an *agreed* change of leadership this side of 2020. But for now we need to defend Corbyn’s achievements, which means defending Corbyn. A Smith victory would almost certainly roll back most of what Corbyn’s built, dumping Labour right back in the directionless swamp we were in after the 2015 GE.

  4. Endemic among politicians throughout Europe is a vacuous lack of ideas. Jeremy Corbyn had an idea: “Lets see what the rank and file want”? This, of course is anathema to labour MP plotters who have become Americanised neocon’s, who’s policy is to impose their will upon the electorate through the media:
    I found this on RT yesterday:
    ‘Corbyn doesn’t get patriotism,’ claims Owen Smith … while defending links to tax avoidance firm
    Labour leadership challenger Owen Smith MP claims Jeremy Corbyn does not “understand” patriotism. At the same time, Smith is defending himself against claims he took free advice from a firm linked to “industrial scale” tax avoidance. https://www.rt.com/uk/353337-corbyn-patriotism-smith-pwc/
    Had the roles been reversed and Corbyn had been the subject of the article it would have been headlines in all of the Tory press, but not a mention on the UK news I’ve seen. This is an example of neocon thinking: change the meaning of patriot, change the meaning of democracy, change the meaning of freedom and we can have it all our own way.

    According to Wiki: The movement had its intellectual roots in the Jewish monthly review magazine Commentary, published by the American Jewish Committee.[7][8] They spoke out against the New Left and in that way helped define the movement.[9][10] C. Bradley Thompson, a professor at Clemson University, claims that most influential neoconservatives refer explicitly to the theoretical ideas in the philosophy of Leo Strauss (1899–1973),[11] though in doing so they may draw upon meaning that Strauss himself did not endorse. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoconservatism

    There is a need for policies much more radical than those of Corbyn: nationalisation of energy banks and printing money; swinging legislation on speculation; making the offshore bank that calls itself The City pay it’s back taxes; a need to make the head of a company responsible for the crimes of his company; a need to be able to quote a Jewish politician without being called anti-Semitic; building affordable homes and getting shot of the bedroom tax – for starters.

    I recently saw a report on a Swiss politician who wants to pay people to stay away from work. Not popular with conservatives who force them to work at jobs they don’t want to do. Who are these employers who want to employ people who don’t want to work? We have been brainwashed with the idea that everyone must work. Watching the TV the other day a woman was saying that we can’t afford social security because there were five people at work supporting them when it was put in place and now there are only two. But the work is still being done by automation and the money is still being made, it’s just going to the wrong people due to a lack of political will to do anything about it.
    There is a desperate need for everyone to have a warm and comfortable home and enough to eat.
    cadxx

  5. It might be oh so important that Corbyn is backed by so many members, if he survives then we could see such an active and engaged party on a wave of popular support. Let us hope he can deliver the goods.

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