Keep Corbyn



I guess it would have been too much to hope that Labour’s PLP would be true to the wishes of a large majority of Labour Party members and actually support the democratically elected leader. But I was hoping that, after successful opposition leading to u-turns by the Government, good results in the local elections, great results in the mayoral elections and the fact that, whether the PLP believe it or not, Corbyn’s support for Remain helped to get a large majority of Labour Party members and a huge proportion of young people voting Remain, the PLP would be supporting Corbyn’s leadership.

Guess I should have known better…..especially considering the imminent arrival of the Chilcott Report and September’s NEC voting….

So, I will just have to reassert how I stand and post this again….


Labour and ‘the snoopers charter’


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Mass surveillance came in under the Tories, with ‘state of the art’ CCTV footage on the streets, but it was embraced with open arms under Blair and strengthened after 9/11, when the US ‘anti-terrorism policies’ led to snooping on a grand scale. It was like Blair’s Government not only watched with envy, but attempted to do even better with their surveillance on British citizens.
Today, and even after local authority cuts, I believe that the UK is still covered with more CCTV cameras than anywhere else in the World. They can track our every move. And even when the cameras are unavailable, the GPS on our mobiles does the job for them.

Mass surveillance is something that you imagine a totalitarian right wing government subscribing to, but that isn’t necessarily so.

The authoritarian nature of government in the Blair years was one of the reasons I, as a socialist, felt increasingly disenfranchised.

A PM who insists on taking the country to war, despite huge public outcry and strong evidence contrary to the reasons for the war in the first place, affirmed my misgivings.
Couple this with the strengthening (rather than abolition) of Thatcher’s trade union laws and the post-9/11 strengthening of the forces of the state against public assemblies, together with the loss of clause 4, plus the many measures put in place to tell families what to do, rather than actually helping them, and it seemed to me that Blair’s government was in no way supporting working class people and their rights to speak out and organise against injustice. Rather, it was seeking to control them.

To me, it seemed that a government that insisted on controlling the very class who historically supported them was not to be trusted to support their voters when it came to fair treatment in the workplace, or when it came to peaceful protests of any description.

But the ‘importance of surveillance’ argument carried on, and there were further discussions on how to ‘control’ information on the internet (always given as ‘ways to ensure public/family safety’).

I believe it was during Brown’s short premiership that laptops were given to poor families so that they too could have access to the world-wide web. These were the laptops given to school children whose parents were on a low-income and, on the surface, it seemed like a great idea. However, these laptops came with many blocks to places you were not ‘allowed’ to browse (not just ‘adult’ sites – many students were unable to access sites they needed to complete their homework and their parents couldn’t use these laptops to pay a bill, or visit their bank account, and FB and Twitter were definitely out).
Savvy parents found an ‘IT friend’ to help them permanently delete the blocking software; others simply threw the laptop away, or sold it on eBay to another unlucky customer.
This was a short-lived and not very successful attempt to control internet access under the guise of ‘safety’, but, some might say that suspicions about the ideas behind the ‘free laptops’ may have been correct….

And, although by now more and more people were getting worried about the implications of mass surveillance and the way it could be used against ordinary people, this implication that ‘we need strong surveillance for our own security and safety’ has prevailed as the overriding argument to oppose anyone who objects.

And even today, if anyone raises their head above the parapet and complains about increases in surveillance, they are likely to be met with the argument: ‘if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to worry about’, and if you go on complaining, you can be made to feel like ‘the enemy’ – ‘what have you got to hide then?’ is likely to be the (sometimes unsaid) question. So many prefer not to complain at all.

Of course, the Tory Government, returned in 2010, was never going to cut back on mass surveillance, despite some ‘libertarian’ claims from a few in their midst. No, what the Tories had (in coalition and now on their own) was a ready-made system of population control, backed up with laws passed and experiments already undertaken.
It fitted right in to their plans to make things even harder for the majority, with new bills on trade unions to control them completely, and with legislation they could put in place in case of mass public protest.

But what the present government still struggles with is control of information via the internet. They can certainly try to monitor individuals and group suspects, but when they carry out legislation that will leave most of the population extremely angry, they face the prospect that all these people could be suspects! And it is not that easy to monitor everyone!

So, on 7th June ‘the Snoopers charter’ was placed before Parliament…
This is a description of the bill by The Canary:

‘On 7 June a bill passed in parliament that threatens the fundamental rights of everyone in the UK. But it seems that only around 25% of the population is aware of its existence, giving MPs the opportunity to take an axe to our autonomy largely without our knowledge.

‘The Investigatory Powers (IP) bill, more commonly known as the Snoopers Charter, passed through its latest stage in the commons by 444 to 69 votes.
‘Privacy is indeed at the heart of the IP bill, but it will destroy privacy rather than protect it. It is designed to secure immense surveillance powers for the UK’s security services, and other public bodies. The proposals include allowing bulk interception of communications, bulk collection of communications data – meaning ‘metadata’ which is essentially the data about data – and bulk equipment interference – aka hacking.

‘Indeed, ‘bulk’ gathering of information seems to be a major point of the IP bill. As Bella Sankey, Director of Policy for Liberty, explains:

This Bill would create a detailed profile on each of us which could be made available to hundreds of organisations to speculatively trawl and analyse. It will all but end online privacy, put our personal security at risk and swamp law enforcement with swathes of useless information.

‘As The Intercept has recently reported, even the UK spies themselves have warned that collecting too much information is dangerous. The publication released a secret report from the UK’s security service, which stated that MI5:

can currently collect (whether itself or through partners …) significantly more than it is able to exploit fully… This creates a real risk of ‘intelligence failure’ i.e. from the Service being unable to access potentially life-saving intelligence from data that it has already collected.

‘The IP bill aims to put these deficient data practices on a statutory footing, to legitimise them. But many argue that targeting specific communications, rather than scooping up information on everyone, is a better way to fight crime. It would also ensure that most individuals retain the liberties afforded to them under multiple human rights conventions.’
See the full article by the Canary here.

Now, you may think that Labour Members of Parliament would oppose this bill. It is not only extremely flawed, it also attacks our human rights on several levels.

And after all, isn’t the Labour Party opposing the Tories’ attempts to change our access to human rights, by opposing the extremely suspect Tory-proposed ‘British Bill of Rights’?

But of course, you only have to look back at the recent history of the Labour Party to realise that this wouldn’t necessarily be the case…

However, under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, with his strong belief in human rights, I was hoping that there would at least have been a virulent opposition to ‘the snooper’s charter’ and a good debate among Labour MPs about whether or not to support it.

But this didn’t appear to be the case…

Three parties did vote against the bill: the SNP, the Green party and the Liberal Democrats.

But many Labour MPs appeared reasonably happy to vote for the bill as long as concessions were made, including ‘a privacy clause’ and protection for trade unions from being targetted. They also received assurance that there would be a ‘double lock’ on warrant approvals.

However, they did not challenge the ‘mass surveillance’ part of the bill, and yet that is at the bill’s core.

Knowing the history of recent mass surveillance in the UK and the strong support from recent Labour Governments for this, although I am dismayed to learn that Labour MPs allowed this bill to pass ‘in principle’, I am sadly not surprised.

Now, I know that the Labour Party are deeply involved in getting a ‘Remain’ vote right now in the EU referendum, but that can be no excuse for taking their eye off the ball with this bill.

It is draconian. It will be used to target individuals, even if trade unions are considered ‘safe’, and it will be used to target protest groups and protest posts.

And that’s not even to mention the way that mass surveillance of the UK population, once a shady business or the work of commercial search engine ‘algorithms’ with ‘privacy clauses’, is now being legitimised for state use.

Surely, as a Corbyn supporter I should be dismayed, not to mention disappointed….?


Time for Labour Party Members to Speak Out


When I browse articles, or Twitter and Facebook, if I see something I like, I re-post it, re-tweet it, or ‘like’ it and often comment on it as well.

But just lately for Labour Party members, that has become increasingly difficult.

Since April, there has been what some call ‘a witch hunt’ in the Labour Party.  Members who are passionate about politics and about particular issues are finding themselves suspended, often without immediate explanation as to why.

A lot of the suspensions appear to be on the grounds that the member has been accused of saying or posting something ‘anti-Semitic’, or even, in some cases, of re-tweeting or ‘liking’ something of this nature. It is usually described as ‘not being in line with Labour Party values’ or something similar.

Of course, if the accusations were true, this would be very understandable. But often the accusations appear to be based upon a reading of ‘anti-Semitism’ that says that it is wrong to criticise political Zionism, or the activities of the state of Israel. And yet, this is not included in the description as used by the Labour Party, or, indeed, by any of the usual definitions of anti-Semitism or racism.

Another accusation of anti-Semitism, which led to the suspension of anti-racist activist, Jackie Walker, was based upon a disagreement by some parties with her reading of a fairly long-standing and highly controversial argument between historians and others, about the nature of the sugar and slave trade, who was involved, and in what numbers.  And, as that argument still goes on today among historians, I wonder how on earth anyone from Labour’s ‘Compliance Unit’ could possibly be expected to make a definitive assessment on the issue. Luckily, common sense prevailed and Jackie Walker’s suspension has now been lifted.

Nevertheless, on the same day, another left-wing Labour Party member was suspended.

And so it goes on….

Along with this are suspensions of other Labour Party members who have been described as ‘to the left of the Party’. In this case, it is often for supporting political parties (usually left wing) other than Labour before they were Labour Party members, which to me appears ridiculous when we have seen it published that ex-Tories have joined with no fuss and even some fanfare.

And it seems to me that the majority of the suspensions, whether for ‘anti-Semitism’ or another reason,  have been of this type of member – to the left of the Party and usually a Corbyn supporter, even more so if they are also a member of and active in Momentum.

I’m a member of Momentum also. In the run-up to the council elections, I was standing as a Labour candidate. I was aware of what was happening with the suspensions, but in the last few days of campaigning, I kept my head down and got on with the job.  I thought that the suspensions were suspect and worrying, but I hoped that people in the Party would realise that I was ‘a good Labour Party member’, in that I was doing my utmost to get elected for the Party.

And afterwards for a few days, I found myself checking what I was posting, re-tweeting, or even ‘liking’.

But then, with more time to think, I realised that the person I was becoming wasn’t me.

I am a political activist because I feel very strongly about issues that affect us all and I want to do something to change things. I am a socialist and I am proud of that.  I am also a reasonably good writer, who can write passionately about political issues.

And I hate injustice and I need to speak out about it wherever it occurs.

If being careful of every single word I say or write, or even ‘like’, is the way I am expected to behave as a Labour Party member, when I know I am a caring person who hates discrimination and who cares about all human beings, then there is something wrong with the Labour Party, not with me.

I hope that the Labour Party as a collective body will realise that the present regime of instant suspensions is not doing the Party any good and is causing a great deal of anger and uncertainty among ordinary members – the grass roots and the bulk of the Party. And I hope that in the days to come, ordinary Labour Party members begin to feel safe again in their ability to speak out without the threat of immediate suspension on suspicion.

Either way, it’s time to speak out again.

Otherwise, what’s the point?

Sorry Nicky, I’m out.

If you care about children’s education, please read this blog post. And then ask yourself why this Government thinks it is necessary to teach children this way and to undermine teachers so badly.


Dear Nicky Morgan,

Please accept this as written notice of my resignation from my role as Assistant Head and class teacher. It is with a heavy heart that I write you this letter. I know you’ve struggled to listen to and understand teachers in the past so I’m going to try and make this as clear as possible. In the six short years I have been teaching your party has destroyed the Education system. Obliterated it. Ruined it. It is broken.

The first thing I learnt when I started teaching in 2010 is that teaching is bloody hard work. It’s a 60 hour week only half of which is spent doing the actual teaching. It eats into the rest of your life both mentally and physically. If it’s not exercise books and resources taking over your lounge and kitchen table it’s worrying about results or about little Ahmed’s home life keeping…

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Why We Must Support Junior Doctors And Student Nurses In Their Struggle


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It was good to see that Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell gave their full support to the Junior Doctors’ Strike last Tuesday. Not only was this the first time in my memory that a Labour Leader and Labour Shadow Chancellor had openly and unequivocally supported a strike, but it was, without doubt, the correct thing to do.

The fight by Junior Doctors for fair treatment at work and by nurses and all NHS workers to retain their bursaries is not only their fight; it is ours too.

Of course, this is about wages, and working hours, and payment for training, but it is also very much about patient safety. And at the heart of the struggle is the fight for something we all hold dear: our Free National Health Service.

Without doctors and nurses we would not have a health service, and without the hard work and dedication of doctors, nurses, and all health support workers and practitioners, our NHS would certainly not be free.

And the issue of ‘free’ is important when we look at the creeping privatisation of our NHS and how it affects not only doctors and nurses, but all of us.

The NHS Privatisation plan:

There are 3 main factors to this:

Soon there will no longer be a ‘national’ health service.
This has already happened in Manchester, and very soon we will have ‘regional health services’ all over the UK, with NHS funding subsumed within local authority funding. And we all know what has happened to local authority funding…it has been cut, and cut again!

The Private Finance Initiative or ‘PFI’:
Since 1992, most large scale public capital investment in the UK has used PFI procurement, whereby a consortium of investment banks, builders, and service contractors raises the finance, and designs, builds, and operates the facilities for the public authority through a project company

Now on the surface, this sounds good – after all, it appears that nothing has been sold off and that the private sector is contributing to the NHS.

But that of course is not the case….

Through the PFI scheme private companies have built NHS hospitals and leased them back to the NHS. They also run support services as part of these contracts. This has of course been highly profitable for the companies involved, otherwise the scheme would not have worked, but it is now becoming crystal clear that the PFI model offers very poor value and is, in fact, draining our NHS of desperately-needed funds.

A number of NHS hospitals are struggling to cope with the cost of meeting their PFI debts. South London Healthcare Trust was the first to be put into administration after being put on a growing list of trusts burdened with PFI debt.

In the early 1990s, hospitals paid no charge on their land, buildings and assets, but today many PFI-run hospitals are paying a substantial percentage to PFI investers just to keep going. And the percentage they pay is rising all the time. At the moment, when new government money is injected into the NHS, most of it goes directly to private investors because of PFI.

We are told that we can no longer afford to pay for universal healthcare, but that simply wouldn’t be true, if only we stopped using NHS funds to pay back the banks and other financiers who control the PFIs.

The Five Year Forward View:
On 1st April 2014, NHS England’s new chief executive, Simon Stevens, laid out his plans for the NHS, and on the surface they sounded positive enough. For example, he talked about:

“Unleashing the passion and drive of the million plus frontline NHS staff who are devoting their professional lives to caring.”

The problem was, that Stevens had a different idea of how to ‘unleash that passion’ than most users of the NHS would have wanted to hear.

By October, 2014, Stevens had published his ‘5 Year forward Plan’; a 39-page report which sets out ways the NHS in England needs to change over the next five years to ensure (and I quote) “it remains affordable in the face of increasing demand and finance pressures.”

On the surface, this ‘plan’ was welcomed by members of the NHS, as it outlined a way of dealing with patient care to fit a more modern age.

However, it has now become apparent that the ‘5 year forward plan’ was based more on business strategy than on patient need (In fact, when talking about his plan, Stevens described it as ‘NHS England’s Business plan’, first and foremost).

One of Steven’s most controversial measures is the call for more ‘super hospitals’, which are, no doubt, more cost-effective in a business sense, but are in actual fact dangerous for some patients living in rural areas, whose access to hospital emergency care and follow-on care will be severely restricted (especially when we take note of cuts to our ambulance services).

But that’s just one example of the problems with this ‘5 year plan’.

The main problem is that it has been designed with profitabilty in mind, rather than patient need.

Now, when you combine these 3 strategies – Devolution, Privatisation, and the ‘5 year forward plan’, you begin to see how much our Free and Public National Health Service is being put under pressure and is already being privatised.

Add to that the ‘profitability factor’, so beloved by PFI investers and by Stevens, and you see where the perceived need to change Junior Doctors’ contracts and to end Nurse’s Bursaries come in. Wages and personel costs being a huge part of the cost of any large ‘enterprise’, something has to be done about them to make them more ‘affordable’ for private investors.

The present scheme of work and pay for Junior doctors is not profitable enough when considered as part of a business plan for investors, and neither of course are bursaries for training NHS staff.

When you take all these things together, it becomes clear that our NHS is not only under threat of privatisation; it is already being privatised.

And this is why it is so important that we all support the junior doctors, student nurses, and in fact all NHS and health care workers.

We may not have access to the boardrooms of private companies, or be able to take part in meetings of private investment consortiums. But we can sure as hell let this government know that we know what they are doing, and that we intend to make them stop doing it!

So, we need to support our Junior Doctors and we need to support our Student Nurses and all NHS workers hoping to train within a free NHS.

Their fight is a fight that all workers and students are having to make – for fair treatment at work; for a living wage; and for free education.

If we as workers let Jeremy Hunt force the junior doctors to sign up to a new contract, how can we expect this Government to be fair to us when we call for decent wages and safe working conditions?

If we as students let this government force all health care workers to pay for their training, we are effectively saying that it is okay to pay for education, and we are therefore giving up the right to call for an end to student loans and for the right to free education for all.

And, if we, as users of the NHS, do not support Junior Doctors and Student Nurses in their fight for fair treatment by Mr Hunt, we are effectively saying “It’s okay Mr Hunt – you go ahead and make their services more profitable to the private sector.” And by doing that we would be giving up our right to demand that our NHS is saved from privatisation.

So we must support our junior doctors, our student nurses and all of our NHS workers.

And as for the Tories, we need to tell them in no uncertain terms “get your thieving hands off of our Free and National Health Service!”

Single parent? Attend the Jobcentre and get referred to social services as a troubled family. New trial at Ashton Jobcentre.

Very worrying report that single mums are being labelled as the heads of ‘troubled families’ by JSA staff under a new ‘incentive scheme’.

The poor side of life

Yesterday I heard something very disturbing. A lady contacted me, she was very upset. She attended the Jobcentre for her signing on appointment and was confronted with something totally unexpected. She’s a very intelligent lady and thankfully she acted quickly and appropriately. She said hello to the advisor or job coach as they call them now. I don’t know why because they don’t coach you into anything except desperation. She’s been attending a mandatory work related course and had despite this completed all her Job searches correctly. The meeting then took a totally different atmosphere. The advisor suggested to her that she should be willing to get involved with a trial that they are running with Tameside Council. They are asking single parents to be assigned a social worker and a key worker so they can keep an eye on her… The reason for this? Because they said she hadn’t…

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The establishment are ‘frit’ because Ed Miliband is the biggest threat to the status quo we’ve seen for decades

As the article says: “the media campaign, aimed at attempting to undermine Miliband’s credibility as a leader, arose precisely because Miliband is the biggest threat to the UK power base and status quo that we’ve seen for many decades.”

Politics and Insights

10424302_677497562319775_766713150422913861_n“We’re in a fight not because our opponents think we’re destined to lose the election. But because they fear we can win. And between now and the election they are going to use every tactic to try to destabilise, distract us and throw us off course. Our task, the task for every person in this party, is simple: To focus our eyes on the prize of changing this country.” Ed Miliband.

Ed Miliband has pledged to take on “vested interests” and “powerful forces” in his bid to win the next general election. Not even the Crosby and Murdoch-orchestrated media campaign, which was aimed at demoralising, undermining and monstering Ed Miliband can disguise the fact that the Tories are in a state of panic.

In fact the media campaign, aimed at attempting to undermine Miliband’s credibility as a leader, arose precisely because Miliband is the biggest threat to the UK power…

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Why I Will Be Voting Labour


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People who read the first posts on this blog will be wondering where all of my thoughts on writing have gone. Well, they will be coming back soon. But for now there is something that I am finding to be much more pressing to write about and that is Politics, and British Politics in particular at this point in time.

And the reason why I feel this way is because I am thinking about the future for my children. However successful I am (or perhaps am not) at writing, it will make no difference if my children grow up into an uncaring World.

I don’t want them to live in fear of losing a job or being sick and having nowhere to go for help. I don’t want them to grow up thinking that the only thing that matters is money: not hard work; not being a caring person; not even being a creative and thoughtful person; but being someone who is valued by society by the amount of money they can amass.

I want my children to grow up feeling that they matter, whether they are rich or poor; healthy or disabled. And I don’t want them thinking that there is no point in caring: that only the wealthy 1% matter and that there is nothing they can do about it.

And that is why I am doing everything I can to ensure that the next UK Government will be a Labour one.

I have been a Socialist since even before I was old enough to vote. Over the years I have felt marginalised by all the leading political parties. I was just old enough to vote when Blair came to power, but I hadn’t voted for him. To me, he was not a Socialist; he was a Centrist with Tory leanings. And for a long time I felt disenfranchised because no one I could vote for in my political ward spoke for the values I held dear.

So what has changed? Why will I be voting Labour in the upcoming General Election?

Because to ignore what is happening to our society would be a crime. All over the World, it is the small percentage of wealthy people who hold the power. These people are rapidly skimming off our money to fill their own pockets. In Britain, our Welfare State is being decimated by so-called ‘austerity reforms; our NHS is being sold off into private hands under the guise of ‘reorganisation’; and our Education system is being taken over by money-making ‘enterprises’.

To be unemployed or sick is something to be dreaded unless you are very rich, because, even if you think you are just getting by now, there will come a time when you discover that all help has run out.

Ed Miliband’s Labour Party is not perfect. But it is the best option we have right now and, I truly believe that a strongly-supported Labour Government will be able to bring in changes that will set us on the way to being a more caring society.

Even though I consider myself to the left of the current Labour Party, I still feel that my vote for them counts. And it is the only vote that will get us anywhere near to kicking this current uncaring government to the sidelines.

So, there will most likely be a few more political writings on this blog leading up to the General Election, and probably afterwards too. But if you feel as I do about the current state of British Society and you want a better future for your children like I do, I’m sure you’ll understand.

Labour’s Dilemma: How To Appeal To Enough Voters To Gain Political Victory


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The Labour Party appears to have a dilemma with who they appeal to, and on what platforms it is best to appeal in order to win the upcoming General Election.

The Tories assume they have the majority of ‘the grey vote’ and Labour appear to be taking them at their word.

So Labour are going after the younger person’s vote.

Will this work?

On the one hand, appealing to Tory-voting pensioners would probably be a waste of time as it would fall on deaf ears.

But on the other hand, many younger people are refusing to vote, as they feel that not only have they been marginalised by all parties, but that all MPs are sleazebags and don’t deserve their vote.

Appealing to either of these groups is going to take a real onslaught just to get the attention of closed minds, and then the likelihood of persuasion is low.

And time is running out.

Labour needs to convince hearts and minds NOW and continue to add more hearts and minds to the list right up to and beyond the impending General Election.

So, as well as going all out to convince new voters and fight off the conditioning of Tory voters, they need to be concentrating on the middle ground. And by that I don’t mean middle classes alone, or middle-aged voters alone (although these groups certainly come into it), but those voters who feel ‘in the middle’ of the political debates: those who can see good bits from both sides of the political argument.

It is voters like these that Blair persuaded back in the 90s, and kept on persuading for a relatively long time.

These are people who value The NHS and Education; who want the best for their children and grandchildren; who care about the unemployed and homeless, but are not among their number. People who, at the moment, feel reasonably secure, but are getting a sinking feeling that they could be next to feel the burden of austerity measures.

In the 90s, after years of a left-of-centre Labour finding themselves in the political wilderness under Neil Kinnock, new leader Tony Blair took a more centrist approach to help New Labour win the General Election. There were, quite rightly, strong misgivings from the left, but in 1997, most left-of-centre (and even centrist) voters, many having lived through Thatcher’s years of ideological ‘reasoning’, knew that there must be change. So, despite misgivings from both sides of the political field, Blair’s centrist approach guaranteed him a landslide victory. He even had a significant proportion of the media on his side – previously unheard of for the Labour Party – and this helped him gain victory.

But Blair’s approach was flawed. Not only did it rely upon courting big business to an unreasonable scale, but when the ‘WMD report’ emerged and Blair supported the findings, it also exposed Blair’s political inadequacies. The latter left New Labour badly tainted and Labour as a whole, deeply mistrusted.

Now Labour is in the same boat as they were before Blair, and they have Blair’s legacy as a further pit to climb out of.

Labour is proposing policies that would work and their campaign for saving the NHS has a majority of the electorate on their side. But they have a leader who is vilified and scorned in the media. It is like history from the Kinnock Labour years is repeating itself all over again.

So what can Labour do in the short time they have left to win hearts and minds?

Miliband will never be a Blair, and more power to him. But by the same token, he is not liked in the media. Like Brown before him, he is ridiculed in ways which make him appear an embarrassment as a leader.

Is that a problem? Surely people will see through the ridicule and vote for policies they feel are better for them, and by extension for their communities?

Well that depends on the thought processes of the electorate and how much they are affected by the issues, or by the facade.  And sadly I think that we still have a long way to go before the facade does not hold sway.

One good thing about all this is that Tory leader, Cameron, is not being projected at his best either.  And the scandal about rich Tory backers and Tory MPs’ links with wealthy businesses interests is definitely doing him no favours right now.

So the balance between ridicule on one side and corruption on the other appears to be holding out…at the moment.

It is now that Labour needs to go on the onslaught. While appealing to new voters, they also need to be emphasising the corruption infiltrating this Tory Government and how it is affecting ALL OF US.  Not just the poor or the unemployed, because many voters will still have the attitude that ‘we would never get like that’. Labour needs to be spelling out to all of us that any of us could be the next unemployed; that any of us could be the next long-term sick, or need the services of the NHS; that any of us could have children or grandchildren joining the unemployed, through no fault of their own; and that any of us could be put into the position where we lose our homes.

Blair used the politics of ‘charisma’. He courted business and he wooed the electorate. With a hostile media, Miliband can’t do this. But that doesn’t have to be an insurmountable problem.

People are fearful. They feel that the Government is out of their control and there is little they can do about it.

Labour needs to find a way to (dare I say it?) use that fear and feelings of lack of control. And at the same time, it needs to show that people matter: that their lives are important; that their health and their well being comes above the needs of Capital; and to show them they can make a positive difference to their and their families’ futures by voting Labour.

It will be a hard struggle, but Miliband can lead Labour to victory at the polls.
If he and Labour as a whole, get their priorities right.