The row between the Unite Trade Union and the ragbag assortment of unreconstructed Bliarites like Jim Murphy and Douglas Alexander is interesting and a peculiar Labourite form of the politics of envy.
Tories like to accuse Labour of basing policies such as taxing the rich as “envy” but consider the two if not three strands which make up Labour activists in Britain.
You might actually be an individual who joins a constituency Labour Party and works your way up to be a candidate for a town council before having a go at being the parliamentary candidate.
That was not the route chosen by Tony B Liar…who went all the way to be MP for Sedgefield. Or Peter Mandelson Hartlepool, David Miliband to South Shields or Ed Miliband to Doncaster. Or Caroline Flint to Don Valley.
Or Jim Murphy. Yes what about Jim? I dont get him at all.
Or Douglas Alexander, Political Advisor to Gordon Brown.
or Wendy Alexander, all the way from advising Donald Dwear to leading the Labour Party in Scotland.
Its good to see that good Labour Party stalwarts in safe Labour seats were persuaded by the sheer personality of these people…the unkind alternative view would be that a load of careerist professional politicians who had never actually had a real job …were parachuted into safe seats on the advice of Labour Party HQ.
Which makes the row over selection for a Labour candidate for Falkirk a bit odd. All of these people…who have never seen the inside of a factory (except when being shown around during a constituency tour) in their working lives presume to tell Len McCluskey a former Liverpool dock worker that he is interfering in the selection of a Labour candidate.
The Alliance Party …
1 COMMENTER MIGHT HAVE AN ASSOCIATION WITH ALLIANCE.
2 I DONT LIKE THE ALLIANCE PARTY. I DONT LIKE UNDEMOCRATIC PARTIES.
3 IT WAS COMPLIMENTARY TOWARDS ALLIANCE PARTY.
4 IT WAS BOLLIX.
You didn’t mention in your blog piece the point that there are allegations of malpractice.
That was the whole point of the blog.
I mean allegations of malpractice on the part of Unite the Union.
Interesting the way this has developed into a battle between metropolitan Labour and the unions. Scottish Labour has been deafening in its silence, not surprising given its cosy relationship with the trade union bosses north of the border and reliance on the union-vote to hold the SNP lion at bay. The fact that Lab HQ in London has to sign off on all nominations for Westminster candidates makes a joke of Scot Labour’s attempt to present itself as separate “sister” party to the London elite. Salmond and co. are hammering this nail for all its worth in the Scottish media. But will it really lead to a parting of the ways for Labour and the trade union support (fees!)? What would happen if the Scottish unions starting playing footise with the SNP in the lead-up to the referendum on independence?
I think thats going to be a problem.
There is no trade unionist in Scotland to say that the cause of labour is the cause of Scotland.
NILP and trade unions here were unionist. So is Scottish Laour and the trade unions.
The unions won’t play footsie with SNP; we can be sure of that.
The measures announced by Miliband today do not (as far as I can ses) amount to any weakening of the Labour-Trade union link.
I did an essay on the Labour-Trade union link and as far as my research went the relationship is still very strong.
Whilst the link between Labour and Unite is strong, in Scotland I sense that Unite may be considering a change of direction. I’ve been to a couple of meetings on community issues recently where Unite representatives have been present. Their reason for being there is to promote Unite in the community. They are now getting involved themselves in community issues and are offering community membership. On both occasions I’ve declined their invitations to join because of their links to the Labour party and indeed in Glasgow they shared the same building as the Scottish Labour Party headquarters, though I believe Labour have recently moved out.
After the last meeting I was talking to 2 young Unite representatives and they were saying that Unite are thinking of starting their own political party in Scotland and having candidates standing for the next election. However, I’m not sure if that is if there is a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ vote in 2014 to Scottish Independence or either way they are doing so.
They may actually do well if they are going to truly represent ordinary working people as Labour have moved far away from helping anyone but themselves. I’ll watch developments with interest.
Thats a very interesting perspective.
Wearing my Jacobite History hat…I am or was …in contact with a few Scots who were very hostile to Labour even if they were leftward leaning or centre left.
Their sense of nationalism trumped their Labour affections.
For Labour…before the rise of SNP…they might have got away with the whole international brotherhood of working people thing…but that doesnt look too credible now.
English or British Labour needs Scottish votes to get into Government…and act against the interests of Scots.