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 10, 2010

Kinnock on Kampfner

From the Guardian letters page:

"My friend John Kampfner (I want to vote for a progressive Labour platform. So I'm backing the Lib Dems, 9 March) is amnesic and myopic. His memory of Labour "changes for the better" omits the highest level of employment in UK history, the massive increases in NHS, education, science and overseas development investment, child and pension tax credits, and several other large contributions to social justice.

He evades the current reality of a government fighting against recession instead of fatalistically surrendering to it as the Tories did in the 80s and 90s, and will – if they get the chance – in a future of nominal market regulation. He ignores the future choice between Labour's measured halving of public debt over four years and the Conservative fiscal slicing "from day one", despite the expert warnings that such a course would inflict economic recession and social regression.
And then, having recognised the reality that Margaret Thatcher's best result was won with 44% of the vote because the rest of the electorate was divided (mainly) between Labour and SDP/Liberals, John campaigns for Liberal votes in 2010 – not tactically, but everywhere! No anti-tribalism can justify that inconsistency – especially when "a more pluralist politics" is only realistically likely to come through implementation of Labour's proposals for the alternative vote.
John Kampfner calls the memory and values of Robin Cook in aid. Robin was an inveterate, lifelong opponent of dilettante self-indulgence and always a principled, gutsy democratic socialist, never a sunshine soldier. He would see John Kampfner's "platform" as a scaffold, not a launch pad, for progressives.

Neil Kinnock"


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sorry - Kinnock's largesse, and faliure as EU Commissioner renders him unable to attack anyone who wants to support a party committed to redistribution of the gross inequalties in the UK.
He lost all credibility, along with his successor, Blair, in his rush to get his nose in the trough

7:43 pm, March 10, 2010

Anonymous Only Tory in Hackney said...

The Welsh windbag and another ginger to$$er

9:15 pm, March 10, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kinnock the Welsh windbag who paved the way for right wing shit like Blair and Brown!

1:29 am, March 11, 2010

Anonymous nicky said...

A good letter and a well deserved bollocking. Kinnock has really got Kampfner's number.

2:43 pm, March 11, 2010

Blogger Merseymike said...

What I find bizarre is why anyone would want to support the LD's under Clegg's leadership, when they have very clearly hurtled to the right, at least on economic and public spending issues

I think there is plenty wrong with NL but I don't regard the LD's as any sort of viable alternative. May as well vote Tory

12:56 am, March 12, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kampfner is a pillock of the highest order.

In 1999 he was about to be appointed the Labour Party's director of communications until the party asked some journalists what they thought of him: "the pardigm of pomposity" was the answer.

Looks like the party dodged a bullet on that one.

11:35 am, March 12, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice to see that Kinnock has still got it.

1:39 pm, March 13, 2010

Blogger Bevin_Boy said...

"Kinnock the Welsh windbag who paved the way for right wing shit like Blair and Brown!"

...or the bloke who saved the Party from tearing itself to bits and set it back on a course to being elected again. You can hardly blame him for what came after. If you want to see real 'right-wing shit', follow Kampfner's advice and vote Lib Dem, a party who's social democratic wing has been emasculated by the worst kind of classical market Liberal.

11:41 pm, March 15, 2010


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