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.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thanks for the offer, but no thanks...

As a newly elected Labour NEC member I ought to be delighted when other people start calling for the NEC to have more power.

But I will be saying a polite "no thanks" to a suggestion which the Communist Party of Great Britain is supporting and says comes from soft-left faction Compass, that Labour's NEC should elect the Shadow Cabinet: http://www.cpgb.org.uk/article.php?article_id=1004131

They quote Compass as saying: "A more democratic way for the Labour Party to decide who should be in the shadow cabinet, and thus with more of a chance of being in the cabinet once the party gains government, would be for the party’s nominally highest elected body to be given the task".

The CPGB says: "This demand for the party’s national executive committee to be given the job of appointing the shadow cabinet is eminently supportable by Marxists."

Three reactions:

  • What business is it of the CPGB how another party's internal democracy functions?
  • They seem pretty categorical in quoting Compass as saying "a more democratic way for the Labour Party to decide who should be in the shadow cabinet, and thus with more of a chance of being in the cabinet once the party gains government, would be for the party’s nominally highest elected body to be given the task", even linking to the document they quoted from (http://clients.squareeye.com/uploads/compass/documents/Compass%20Transforming%20Labour%20WEB2.pdf) but when you look at the actual document that sentence isn't there. Has someone at Compass retrospectively edited it out because it's too daft even for them? Or did the CPGB imagine this Compass demand.
  • There's a good reason for the PLP electing the Shadow Cabinet. They know them and work with them. As an NEC member I don't have that kind of knowledge of the candidates so I don't feel qualified to make that choice.

Nice idea though. Wonder if they had me in mind when they wrote it.

7 Comments:

Anonymous Jon Lansman said...

"What business is it of the CPGB how another party's internal democracy functions?" - I might ask what a Labour NEC member is doing trawling through the CPGB's more esoteric publications.

5:44 pm, October 14, 2010

 
Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

I thought everyone read "Weekly Worker" Jon!

5:58 pm, October 14, 2010

 
Blogger johnpaul said...

It was pointed out that it was a mistake for Either Ken Livingstone or oona King standing for the Nec as they were standing for Laoburs choice for Mayor or Sam Tarry as he aws standing for Chair young labour ,standing for the NEC as it influeced their votes ,so If the were allowed to pick the shadow cabinet I'd have to think twice about theri vote, similar when alot of us voted for Walter wolfgang for the NEc after he was evicted by security gards for heckling Jack straw at the labour conference a few years ago,I'd agian think twice about voting for him knowing he'd have picked a potentiial shadow cabient too.

9:49 pm, October 14, 2010

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The CPGB are just mad trots (all thirty of them) and certainly not to be confused with the Communist Party of Britain (traditional CP) which has its roots in the British socialist party which was affiliated to the Labour Party

10:07 pm, October 14, 2010

 
Blogger Merseymike said...

I actually don't believe in an elected shadow cabinet. I think the leader should be allowed to choose who he or she wants

11:38 pm, October 14, 2010

 
Anonymous Delbert Wilkins said...

Hey Luke, any advice on the Unite gen sec elections? I'm at a loss as to the truth behind the election statements...

8:33 am, October 15, 2010

 
Anonymous spotter said...

anonymous - the CPGB aren't trots but more some kind of Kautskyists.

Delbert Wilkins - the runners and riders are:
Les Bayliss - righty
Len McCluskey - lefty
Jerry Hicks - ultralefty
Gail Cartmail - ???

10:02 am, October 18, 2010

 

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