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.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Compass - less than 300 active members

The results of the executive elections for soft left faction Compass are out here: http://clients.squareeye.com/uploads/compass/Compass1.xls

They reveal that it only has 274 members active enough to bother voting in its internal elections. You can - like former NUS President Gemma Tummelty - get on their executive with only 10 first preference votes.

Hardly a mass membership organisation poised to sweep to control of the Labour Party.

34 Comments:

Blogger Jackson Jeffrey Jackson said...

How many votes were cast in the last Progress elections?

And while we're on the subject, how many people participated in the selection process for the Labour First NEC candidates?

I'm sure all this information is online somewhere but I can't find it at the moment.

4:08 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Neither of those organisations claims to have internal elections. Progress is a political education outfit, not a faction.
Labour First is a network/mailing list. There aren't "Labour First NEC candidates" or "selections" for them. There were five candidates who were already up and running because they had chosen to individually, who it was obvious were the five candidates closest to Labour First politically, largely because they were not on the GRA slate, so we chose to recommend support for them.

4:24 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Blogger Jackson Jeffrey Jackson said...

I'd say Compass is nearer to a political education outfit than a faction as well, especially given that they don't have a Parliamentary group.

How can I join Labour First, by the way? They don't seem to have a website.

4:29 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Anonymous David Floyd said...

"Hardly a mass membership organisation poised to sweep to control of the Labour Party."

A straw man decisively floored.

Is it a much worse turnout - percentage wise - than the Fabians get?

6:19 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Anonymous Peter Kenyon said...

Dear Luke

"There were five candidates who were already up and running because they had chosen to individually, who it was obvious were the five candidates closest to Labour First politically, largely because they were not on the GRA slate, so we chose to recommend support for them."

We....being? Sounds rather regal.

7:27 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

I don't personally choose who Labour First should recommend all by myself if that's what you mean Peter.

8:05 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Blogger Merseymike said...

No, Progress is definitely a faction. I went to its early conferences and it was very clear then what it was there for.

8:35 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

It was intended to be - I was at its founding executive committee - but never really took on that role. Certainly doesn't have it now. Labour First is the only network on the moderate wing of the party addressing organisational questions such as internal party elections.

9:12 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anybody belonging to Compass should be expelled from the Labour Party. We have the rules and the procedures from the days of Millitant.

They are dangerous and are actively working for the Conservatives. A classic MI5 style infiltration. A core of probably 6 activists and the rest are dragged into it.

10:52 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Anonymous east end labour: said...

Just found a link to labour glasgow east blog. Support the cause by linking to it.

11:51 pm, July 11, 2008

 
Blogger Newmania said...

I love Compass and often pop in with helpful tips ...only today I was offering my sympathy...

...Polls are showing that Glasgow East may well fall to the SNP despite Harriet Harperon`s belated appeasement of Catholics over the embryology bill . If it does then Brown may well have to go. After Brown the challenge for the left is to start talking about what the state should ‘not’ do .Each Compass essay advising this or that twiddle of the knobs tell me that a period in opposition if not a reformed Party political geography will be required .

Be brave oh miserable lefties .The first instinct of we Tories having been cast from heaven was to cling to comforting fundamentalism. It will , I assure you , sink without trace carrying the Labour Party with it .

Pretty nice of me I thought ...:)

1:35 am, July 12, 2008

 
Anonymous Peter Kenyon said...

Dear Luke

"Labour First is the only network on the moderate wing of the party addressing organisational questions such as internal party elections."

How would anyone know it is on the 'moderate' wing? Have its candidates issued a joint statement? Members who have still to vote deserve to be told. I also think of myself as moderate and I'm on the Centre Left Grassroots Alliance slate.

So I think your claim that Labour First is the "only network on the moderate wing of the party addressing organisational questions such as internal party elections" is misleading. The CLGA network embraces both left-wing and moderate or centre candidates.

7:23 am, July 12, 2008

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

'fewer'

10:15 am, July 12, 2008

 
Blogger Merseymike said...

I think there is a difference between the 'moderate' wing and unremitting support for the failed new Labour experiment.

10:52 am, July 12, 2008

 
Anonymous dirty european socialist said...

HOT NEWS STORY

http://news.scotsman.com/politics/Former-SNP-figure--attacks.4273464.jp
A SNP former MSP has said she was bullied due to a cmapaign by the SNP canaidater in the seat. Yeah really classy you tories vote a guy that bullies nice old ladies. But anything goes in your sick minds even if you agree with nothing he has to say LOL.
Here is the lino to the story in two parts As long links to dont appear properly.
"http://news.scotsman.com/"
"politics/Former-SNP-figure--attacks.4273464.jp"

10:56 am, July 12, 2008

 
Anonymous Link to story said...

Here is link tio the story i mention.

10:57 am, July 12, 2008

 
Anonymous dirty european socialist said...

Sorry about my spelling it is early in the morning.

10:58 am, July 12, 2008

 
Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Peter

the 5 candidates that Labour First is recommending support for are running as individuals - who we then choose to recommend support for - hence we wouldn't expect them to have a common policy platform. They are not a "slate" in the sense that the CLGA line-up is. We don't and wouldn't want to have a policy platform ourselves as Labour First - our collective stance is limited to support for the union link, belief that the contribution played by councillors should be respected by the party, a broadly pro-European stance, strong line on defence, and hostility to the excesses of the Hard Left. As anyone who has read Dianne Hayter's book "Fightback" will know, Labour First has no intrinsic connection to the "new Labour experiment" mentioned by Mike, as we are a network dating back to 1988 when we were set up to carry on the work of the Labour Solidarity Campaign.

3:21 pm, July 12, 2008

 
Blogger Newmania said...

Splitters...

5:26 pm, July 12, 2008

 
Blogger E10 Rifle said...

There are many things silly and wrong about Luke's initial post, but none wronger than the headline itselt. "Less than" 300 members indeed. It should be "fewer than" FFS!

But then New Labour has always characterised itself by its inept and graceless mangling of the English language.

7:06 pm, July 12, 2008

 
Blogger E10 Rifle said...

Oops, typo in "itself" there. Sorry.

7:07 pm, July 12, 2008

 
Anonymous stephen said...

Oops, typo in "itself" there. Sorry

It is an ineluctable law of nature that if you point out a mistake in grammar or spelling, you will make some other mistake in the post that points it out!

10:28 pm, July 12, 2008

 
Anonymous Piers Gaveston said...

It is an ineluctable law of nature that if you point out a mistake in grammar or spelling, you will make some other mistake in the post that points it out!

Stephen. Would an example of this be your employment of a comma where a semi-colon would have been more appropriate?

10:05 am, July 13, 2008

 
Blogger Newmania said...

It really is astonishing how much the various parts of the New Labour world hate eachother. I cansee why they are so scared of open elections.
The Conservative Party is nothing like that the supposed divisions , say on Grammar schools are no more than friendly questions of emphasis.

People are saying Purnell will take over , take over what , I wonder ?

10:38 am, July 13, 2008

 
Anonymous Alberto Granado said...

Sorry, I've got a bit lost. Can anyone point me towards the Peoples' Front for the Liberation of Palestine (Marxist-Leninist Anti-Revisionist Fourth International Che Guevara Group)?

11:09 am, July 13, 2008

 
Anonymous Rob Shorrock said...

It isn't all that suprising. Compass seems to be a hotch potch of issue campaigns, often with an authoritarian slant; take the 'Commercialisation of Childhood' campign which, in places, reads like a Mail on Sunday supplement.

11:43 am, July 13, 2008

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But around 1000 went to the recent conference Luke.

What is the largest event Progress has put on in the last twelve months?

12:12 pm, July 13, 2008

 
Anonymous Dave Spart said...

The distance between Neal Lawson and the next placed candidates was pretty huge, suggesting it is little more than his 'fanclub'. Some of those who stood barely secured more than their own first preference vote, also suggesting that a Compass election is nothing more than ex-New Labour insider Lawson and friends seeking legitimation.

2:52 pm, July 13, 2008

 
Anonymous David Floyd said...

"The distance between Neal Lawson and the next placed candidates was pretty huge, suggesting it is little more than his 'fanclub'."

It suggests that Neal is the highest profile member of Compass, which he is.

It's unlikely anyone would be active enough in Compass to vote if they thought Neal was an idiot and disagreed with everything he said.

I don't think this is big news.

6:13 pm, July 13, 2008

 
Blogger Robert said...

Well since Tricket left after saying he would not vote or back the 42 day dentention, he left, then Cruddas who has stood as being left, what he means is left behind, he then voted for it, so he has now gone, well gone over to writing for the Mirror, but if compass has three hundred members it will soon have more members then New Labour.

I've just watched Brown telling us about his new plans for knife laws and it's a hotch botch of nothingness.

He is a waste of space but once he gets onto facts and figures he is good, once he gets onto leadership detail he makes a hell of a mess.

We know the army is short of highly trained killers, so why not send over a few hundred knife experts, then experts with hand guns, this way they can shoot the innocent people instead of kicking them to death.

12:02 pm, July 14, 2008

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Some of those who stood barely secured more than their own first preference vote, also suggesting that a Compass election is nothing more than ex-New Labour insider Lawson and friends seeking legitimation."

Actually all it suggests it that those people who "barely secured more than their own first preference vote" didn't have much personal support.

It is ludicrous assertion to draw the conclusion that the election was "nothing more than ex-New Labour insider Lawson and friends seeking legitimation."

Most elections (including general elections) have candidates who get sod all support.

6:49 pm, July 14, 2008

 
Anonymous Ben said...

Peter Kenyon has made a mistake in considering his own political position, confusing the words "moderate" and "muppet". This is an easy thing to do and an understandable typo does not in any way reflect poorly upon him.

Is newmania a Tory member? I think we should be told if eugenicists are joining them now.

8:33 pm, July 14, 2008

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just wondering if you and your Labour First mates support this, from an email I got from Compass a couple of days ago:

"Local government workers in UNISON and Unite are planning to strike on 16 and 17 July over a 2.45% pay offer, the latest in ten years of below-inflation pay awards. This will be followed on the 18 July by a day of protest for better pay in the NHS organised by Unite. We would urge you to give your support and show solidarity for all our public service workers taking action for fair pay"

Funny, I'm not sure I've heard what Progress or Labour First have to say on the subject...

9:16 am, July 16, 2008

 
Anonymous MichaelC said...

Funny how New Labour acolytes argue that low turnouts demonstrate general satisfaction when it comes to their re-election. Internal management elections hardly ever get a large percentage of members turning out. Look at how many shareholders bother to cast votes for the boards of companies. But when a left group gets a similar result, we're meant to be all scandalised?

And for an avowed electoral reformer to use the spurious arguments that a successful cnadidates got a relatively low number of first preferences it utterly absurd. Transfered votes are no less legitimate then first preferences.

3:23 pm, July 18, 2008

 

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