New Labour turns to dross

When Blair had been prime minister for about 3 months in 1997, the Daily Telegraph carried a huge picture of Thatcher with Blair standing in front of it.   The caption underneath says it all: ‘to Thatcher, a son’.   It was the start of the Labour pseudo-Tory interregnum which has allowed Right-wing rule to prevail continuously in this country for the last 35 years    That Blairite brand is now utterly toxic, made worse by his own insatiable lust for money and publicity.   If Labour is still too craven to make a clean break with prolonged Tory austerity – though that is far and away the party’s best chance of opening up a big lead over the Tories and also stopping the haemorrhaging to UKIP and the Greens in England and to the SNP in Scotland – surely Labour has the guts to slough off its biggest mistake and regain a new identity, as Ed Miliband  has repeatedly indicated he wanted to do, which portrays Labour as genuinely concerned with voters’ needs rather than with the inward-looking selfies of the Westminster bubble.

Almost everything New Labour touched has turned to dross.   Examples abound everywhere.   New Labour 13 years ago put the final nail into Barbara Castle’s State Earnings-Related Pension Scheme, the best and fairest pension scheme this country has ever had.   It replaced it with so-called stakeholder pensions, outsourced of course to an extremely greedy and manipulative pensions industry.   Here is predatory capitalism in the raw.   SERPS would have ensured that after its 20-year run-in period nobody would have entered retirement in poverty.   Now millions do, largely because the annual 2-3% fees charged by avaricious companies have gouged out huge holes in pensions, particularly for women, hundreds of thousands of whom having contributed all their working lives endu below the poverty line.

Another bright, but little known, New Labour innovation 15 years ago was the limited liability partnership (LLP).   It has subsequently become the corruption vehicle of choice for organised crime.   It allows partners in accountancy firms to limit their liabilities for dodgy audits while keeping the tax advantages of being a partnership.   It allowed international criminal gangs to have anonymous offshore shell companies as the only ‘members’ of the ‘partnership’, with no real people as directors for law enforcers to chase.   By last year there were 12,000 LLPs, each with just 2 corporate members located in the British Virgin Islands, the Seychelles, Belize, the Marshall Islands or Panama.   They were used for everything from sanctions-busting arms deals with Libya and creaming off multi-million pound corrupt contracts in Ukraine to siphoning bent money out of Russia and shipping weapons to Syria. A real New Labour success story.

6 thoughts on “New Labour turns to dross

  1. To true micheal to true but is ed going to listen has parliament has
    become far removed from its people are you all going to listen has
    it seems only a little is getting through that you deny those ninty nine percent who aint rich but vote but getting em back that really up to ed
    to show no more austerity no more fraudulent banksters taking the poor to the cleaners and a fair welfare system were those on benefits aint persecuted for it had I posted earlier on another site that I went to work mostly seven days a week with occasionally a day off now and then but paid my nearly quarter of my wages taxes into that pot didnt
    wonder were it went I didnt care how government spent it but paid I did a round forty one yrs I think but to see peoples saying how can they get this and that is wrong people standing outside pubs whilst I came or went from work at odd hours I didn’t think my taxes were filling their glasses up my thoughts poor souls caught in a web so why oh why pick on those who are poor its just another tory way of blaming the poor for their mistakes of being to greedie jeff3

  2. To true micheal to true but is ed going to listen has parliament has
    become far removed from its people are you all going to listen has
    it seems only a little is getting through that you deny those ninty nine percent who aint rich but vote but getting em back that really up to ed
    to show no more austerity no more fraudulent banksters taking the poor to the cleaners and a fair welfare system were those on benefits aint persecuted for it had I posted earlier on another site that I went to work mostly seven days a week with occasionally a day off now and
    then but paid my nearly quarter of my wages taxes into that pot didnt
    wonder were it went I didnt care how government spent it but paid I did a round forty one yrs I think but to see peoples saying how can they get this and that is wrong people standing outside pubs whilst I came or went from work at odd hours I didn’t think my taxes were filling their glasses up my thoughts poor souls caught in a web so why oh why pick on those who are poor its just another tory way of blaming the poor for their mistakes of being to greedie jeff3

  3. Miliband needs to make it crystal clear that the current Labour Party is very, very different to Blair’s New Labour. Perhaps they should come up with a new name? Many people are still reluctant to vote Labour because of Blair’s wars, etc, so Labour really does needs to distance themselves from this. Labour really does need to win the next election, as the Tories are ruining the country.

  4. Recent articles from the writer indicate a push to get the Labour leadership to defend their position adequately against tory misrepresentations, and to put up a good alternative case for being elected again. Good luck with that.

    While here I’m probably being very niave, but cannot the Labour backbenchers just ask their leaders why not?

    So after all of the whys, then what is the answer to that why question? What indeed is the reason, or reasons, for the Labour leadership continuing to keep holding back? When the country is thirsty for a viable electable alternative, and a strong message of support for the ordinary struggling individual. It is hard to comprehend.

    It was Blair, with not one socialist bone – so how he was he allowed to happen? – who laid the foundation for what is now the outright attack on the security of anyone without a well-paid job, which is increasingly difficult to obtain; and on the assault, or even culling, of the weakest members of our society.

    Always represented as doing something respectable. As is making money from the suffering of others. (I’ve always found respectable citizens, or those who imagine themselves so, to be far more frightening than any honest rogue.)

    Labour need to say it out loud – that they got it wrong, and they’re now going to do something about putting it right. That greed is vile and damaging to the fabric of society, and that caring and serving others is what is worthy, and should also be respected and paid a proper wage, which is for the benefit of all.

    That the benefits to the wealthy and businesses are far greater and far more fiddled than the small ones to the poorest, and that removing money from those who keep it circulating, and giving it to those who take it out of circulation, can never fix a deficit. It makes no economic sense.

    Depressively, strategically, we here probably will be voting Labour, even though they still look far too tory-lite; because of the vague straw of hope that surely it can’t be quite as bad as the tories (and for sure better than UKIP). That’s not good enough, we know.

    When what it looks like is that the Labour party itself is also only pulled by the strings of the puppet masters of the corporations, and has forgotten it’s reason for being. When we don’t need those money-blood-sucking corporations, they need us tied to them.

    So the question also becomes, to emphasise, how to awaken the leading away – the cutting of the corporate strings – from what is becoming a really nasty right-wing country?

  5. A rather bitter rant. At any point in time your draw a line and look forward not back. The Blair/Brown years were good, bad and often very ugly. But so what? That’s history. We have a political shambles at the moment and it is far from clear that old-fashioned Bright Red Labour is the way forward. The inherited debt that the Coalition has added to cannot be shrugged off. There has to be a solution or we will be bankrupt as a Nation. The rise of the Right in the form of UKIP is an affront to our national prestige and decency. They must be fought tooth and nail and you won’t do that with unfunded spending commitments or electoral giveaways, you’ll do it by telling the truth. And can we please stop fighting old battles? Most of us don’t give a toss about Blair and Brown any more. We don’t want Ed to be Red, but right. And to tell the truth to the people. Electors know eventually when they are being conned. The snake oil salesmen have taken over our politics. Ed must not join them.

  6. Paddy, you are making the classic mistake (I hope) of repeating false tory propaganda – regarding the economy. An economy with a sovereign currency (as the UK is, with the pound) CANNOT be made bankrupt. It just can’t happen, the BoE will pay debts and create currency to fulfil such obligations, regardless of how the economy of the government is doing.

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