A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Reg Freeson Obituary in Guardian

The Guardian carries an obituary of Reg Freeson, Housing Minister under Wilson and Callaghan.

Freeson was a Labour leftwinger, but, like Frank Dobson, this did not stop him being knifed by Ken Livingstone who had him de-selected to create a parliamentary vacancy in Brent East for Ken to fill.

It's a shame that someone who made a fine contribution to Labour as an MP and Minister is now mainly remembered for the humiliating and gratuitous way they were shoved aside to make way for Livingstone.

Of course, I am sure that Ken's acolytes would argue that the ends justify the means, as now we Londoners live in a socialist paradise which enjoys great fraternal relations with Chavez and Castro, where bourgeois deviations like Routemaster buses have been abolished for proletarian triumphs like the bendy bus and the oyster card, where the Standards Board for England's remit apparently does not run, where Labour Party membership is something that can be traded in from one election to the next, and where not noticeably qualified workers can get six figure salaries as GLA commissars providing they have previously served as members of the central committee of the International Marxist Group/Socialist Action.

A great unanswered question is who will our great leader Ken support for Labour Party Leader? He doesn't get on with John McDonnell having sacked him as GLC Deputy Leader back in the '80s for being too left wing (which was quite an acheivement for McDonnell given Ken's own politics). And he hates Gordon Brown, having called for him to be sacked as Chancellor in the late '90s, and in turn Brown trying to block his readmission to the Labour Party (which is a big plus point in Brown's favour as far as I am concerned).


Anonymous Adele said...

Cruddas perhaps? No one! Himself?

10:49 am, October 11, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ken always believed he should/would be leader, it is true.

Knowing Ken he will trade his support for something. After all, he did once describe Neil Kinnock as the "greatest leader of the Labour Party since George Lansbury" - the most gratuitous insult imaginable if you ask me, but Ken was at the time being Kinnock-friendly and joining the LCC, so proving himself ideologically highly-flexible.

Where is Trevor Phillips when you need him?

12:14 pm, October 11, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

By the way, if Ken knows his history he won't be backing Cruddas for anything. Cruddas was the prime moving force behind the idea that - instead of being open about why Ken's politics made him unacceptable as the Labour candidate - the party opeted for the bothched stitch up.

5:42 pm, October 11, 2006

Anonymous Adele said...

Ken's politics have made him a good labour mayor. I generally think he has done a good job and stuck to his principles. Just shame about the fact he is a splitter.

10:34 pm, October 11, 2006

Blogger Bob Piper said...

Where is Trevor Phillips when you need him?

I doubt if anyone would ever ask the question.

As for Ken, Luke and other arse-licking toadies have never quite forgiven him for winning! Tough. Live with it, it will ease your pain. I am always amazed at the amount of vitriol the right of the party heap on Ken (for standing against a Labour candidate) but then fawn and faint at the prospect of Tories crossing the House or the SDP right-wingers crawling back on their bellies.

4:24 pm, October 12, 2006


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