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, March 14, 2007

Good result

Clem Attlee and Ernest Bevin - who took the decision that Britain should become a nuclear power - would be proud that a Labour Government has decided to renew that deterrent.

As Attlee and Bevin took their decision in secret, without even consulting the Cabinet, they might however be a little surprised to see it subject to a vote in the Commons. But times change.


Blogger Owen said...

I'm sure they'd be ecstatic that, over fifteen years after the end of the Cold War, a Labour Government had relied on the votes of the Tories to defeat its own backbenchers in order to waste tens of billions on these WMDs.

At least the "serious moderates" of the British Conservative Party can be trusted on touchstone issues like this - unlike over a quarter of the PLP.

You're right. What a proud day for the Labour party.

8:18 pm, March 14, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

You had better get used to it Owen. There never has been, isn't and never will be majority support for your views in the country or the Commons. For a few years your opinions managed to hijack the Labour Party - the consequence was 18 years of Thatcher and Major. Has it ever occured to you that the reason why your position gets rejected when tested at the ballot box is that you are wrong? Sorry if that causes an existential crisis but I hate to see younger comrades waste their political energy chasing chimeras.

8:36 pm, March 14, 2007

Blogger Owen said...

Hijack? The implication there is that some sort of coup took place. Did the left "hijack" the party, or did it win the argument democratically, causing a large portion of the right to secede and form a new party (having realised they couldn't win democratically within the party) therefore splitting the Labour vote and ensuring that the Tories were swept back to power?

Are you also telling me that elections in the 80s were effectively referenda on nuclear weapons? And are rebels like Stephen Pound (PPS to your dream candidate) born again Bennites?

Polls on Trident have revealed that a majority of the population oppose rearmament - see: http://www.cnduk.org/pages/polljuly06.pdf

You're stuck in a Cold War timewarp, Luke.

This government relied on the Tories to invade Iraq, marketise education, and now to spend billions on WMDs. Hardly something to boast about, is it?

And I'm glad you raised the ballot box - because we're going to be battered at the polls for this. I'm sure thousands of Labour supporters are joining you tonight and cracking open the bubbly to celebrate.

9:14 pm, March 14, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Yes, elections in the 80s were effectively referenda on nuclear weapons.

And yes the left did hijack the party - using bullying, intimidation and procedural ploys to silence moderate voices in CLP after CLP - in the case of Militant actually using physical violence. That's why the left always argued against OMOV -once ordinary members get balloted, the party membership is revealed to be more moderate than the activists.

Who are all these people that are anti-nuclear and won't vote Labour? They don't show up in opinion polls and they didn't show up on the pathetically small CND demos in the last few weeks.

Give up - McDonnell and his views are a busted flush before he's even started. He won the prize for dullest speech in today's debate.

I'm off to crack open the champagne and toast the proper defence of the realm by a Labour, repeat a REAL LABOUR, government.

Hasta la vitoria siempre!

9:23 pm, March 14, 2007

Blogger Owen said...

Before you do, why not drop an email to Dave Cameron thanking him for staying true to the spirit of Clem Attlee, unlike all those far left extremists such as Stephen Pound and Nigel Griffiths?

His email is camerond@parliament.uk, by the way.

Enjoy the champers!

9:29 pm, March 14, 2007

Anonymous Duncan said...

I don't think I've ever come across a more unreconstructed Old Labourite than Luke Akehurst! It's like the years since approximately 1977 never happened. Strangely enough even all the people who agreed with you then - those who are still alive - have moved on!

11:17 pm, March 14, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Duncan you are about 14 years out -actually it's the years since 1963 when Gaitskell died that have disappointed me - and the rot set in in 1956 when the TGWU General Secretaryship fell to the left.

7:36 am, March 15, 2007

Anonymous Duncan said...

Haha! Fair enough, Luke! I wasn't suggesting you'd have liked everything that happened in the party before '77, just that your rhetoric reminds of the Labour Right of that era... But yes, I can see the Gaitskellite tradition well enough. What's your Europe position, Luke?

Anyway, there's nothing wrong with wishing for historical re-writes! Funnily enough, I'm not mad keen on much since '51 (that's not to say I don't admire many of the positions of the Bevanites, nor that I'm not the enthusiastic Bennite I always was, just that I wish we could have applied some of it in government).

George Lansbury would have made a good Prime Minister (when he was younger... imagine him instead of Ramsay Mac...)

8:17 am, March 15, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

I'm a pro-European.

9:45 am, March 15, 2007

Blogger Chris Paul said...

Don't think you have ANY CASE that either pairing would support you on this one. Ridiculous! Another dodgy dossier. You are making the LP look bad by the rush to do this when there is loads of time and priorities may change. Or some LP person may realise that Ger and Bel and Ned and Nor and Fin and Swe and Spa and Por and Ita and all sorts re just fine without bombs ...

3:53 am, March 16, 2007


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