Starmer ‘paint a picture in primary colours’ relaunch. WTF?

Keir Starmer, Labours absolute shambles of a leader is – you’ve guessed it – relaunching himself again!

He’s gone from embracing Blair’s legacy to finally admitting those 10 pledges were a sham and now wants to paint a picture in primary colours – what the hell does that even mean?

Keir Starmer has announced a departure from his 10 pledges, a pledge lest we forget being a solemn promise, made to us, the Labour membership. This is hardly news to those of us who have been or still are members of the Labour Party. He departed from them on day one, its just taken him 18 months to admit he never really meant a word he said in order to become elected. His war on the left of his own party just confirming that. His promise to build on the success of Corbyn’s leadership translated as rip it all up and suspend him from the party for far longer than the rules allow and suspend any CLP’s that dare try show solidarity with him. Any semblance of socialism he appointed to his front bench was ousted on the flimsiest of terms as fast as he could manage and its been diktat ever since.

He’s lost support, lost volunteers, lost members and has now thrown out even more by proscribing various groups on the left of the party and as a result is no longer competitive in by elections, losing one after another, only hanging onto Batley & Spen as a result of emotional blackmail and a bit of luck in the Green Party stepping aside.

Pledge one was the easiest to keep as it was on economic justice. Lowest corporation tax level in Europe, a tax only on profits as this is, raising it should’ve been a no brainer. He said now is not the time to this at the same time he was campaigning to be Labour leader – he literally broke it before even getting elected!

Pledge 2 was social justice – well where’s the social justice in saying nurses deserve a 2.1% pay rise, after the Tories promised 1%. They needed 12%, they were owed 15%, the Tories went 3% and Starmer broke his pledge and faith with nurses needing a fair deal.

Climate justice was pledge 3, for heavens sake all he had to do was stick with Becky Long-Bailey’s excellent Green New Deal and Corbyn’s 2030 climate crisis target. Nope, ditched it within months of becoming leader, has offered a limp ambition since. Always ambitions and never actual policy announcements.

Promote peace and human rights was pledge 4, just look at his treatment of Labour Party members, his abuse of the Labour party rulebook, the payoffs to shush up legal cases we had, and you’ve got an authoritarian who has been far too profligate with Party cash. No wonder Labour is worried it can’t even cover payroll now, but besides internal abuses he’s been a serial abstainer on the issue of human rights and he’s a former human rights lawyer! From the overseas operations bill, to the spycops bill he whipped his MP’s to abstain and was going to on the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill until Clapham Common happened, forcing him to grudgingly oppose. Pathetic.

Pledge 5, common ownership – he ripped that up when he rowed back on the prospect of nationalising BT saying Labour under him is pro-business. In other words, he’s a red Tory.

Defend migrants rights was pledge number 6. When we have a sociopathic migrant hater in Priti Patel, it should be easy to just oppose frankly anything that comes out of her mouth. Starmer has failed to ever do so, so hasn’t kept this pledge.

Pledge 7 was strengthen workers rights and trade unions – what a sick joke this one is. When Becky Long Bailey sided with the teaching unions over concerns regarding covid in schools, she got the sack, allegedly over calling actress Maxine Peake a diamond, but we all know the truth. Useless Kate Green replaced her and Starmer just went, schools must open no ifs, no buts, no equivocation. He backed Unite over Fire and Rehire on twitter, then panicked over it and deleted it and now he’s using fire and rehire tactics to sack 90 staff, whilst recruiting more on temporary part time contracts, causing the trade unions to consider industrial action against Starmer and Labour! He broke this in the most egregious possible way.

Pledge 8, radical devolution of power, wealth and opportunity, was torn up when he defended Boris Johnson’s trip to Scotland to promote the Union during the pandemic and has been utterly silent on Tory cronies ending up in the House of Lords – so much for equal opportunity, the gravy train rumbles on.

Pledge 9 was promotion of equality, but then he called Black Lives Matter a moment and has expelled members, most notable Jeremy Corbyn and most recently Ken Loach over factually questioning the prevalence of antisemitism or standing in solidarity with suspended members, plus he’s still burying the Forde Report, which, lest we forget is a report into internal racism in the party and BAME members in particular are furious this has still not been released.

And pledge number 10, to provide effective opposition to the Tories. I’ll never forget the people on Gogglebox saying ‘if him saying I agree with the Tories were a drinking game you’d be pissed!’

So lets bury this notion that he might scrap his 10 pledges, he’s already broken every single one, some several times over and they are no longer worth the paper they were printed on.

Now, on top of his agile ceremonies and multi-disciplinary collaboration in iteration, he’s talking about painting in primary colours. Why the hell does this brylcreemed advert for suited and booted nothingness insist on talking in such a meaningless fashion? His speech is now a direct reflection of his persona, it’s like he’s from an alien planet, there’s no sense in anything he says! Painting in primary colours, what are you three? Well you’ve torn up any semblance of socialism, so you won’t be using red, you stand for a metric ton of sod all, so Liberal yellow might suit, but with all your constant agreement with the government your tenure as leader is most definitely blue. Some might argue that mixing them makes green, but we’ve already exploded pledge number 3, so lets not go there.

The top priority is a Labour government he says, great, tell us something we don’t know, how are you going to achieve that when you lie, break your promises and have no policy? Are you going to announce some? No you’re apparently going to paint.

What is the one thing that connects Attlee, Wilson and Blair? They all had vision, had policies, they all increased Labour’s seat count, you missed Corbyn out in 2017 who did the same though, but that little nugget doesn’t suit you does it?

By officially announcing the 10 pledges might be on the way out, broken as they are anyway, merely confirms you lied to get elected. You lied to members who might have supported you and that makes you fundamentally untrustworthy. You’re dishonest Keir. You have no policies, still, to this day for anyone to base an opinion on your ability to lead, and the longer that goes on for, the worse people’s opinions of you are going to be. A recent YouGov poll of people’s attitudes towards you was excoriating. Of 12,000 respondents – huge by YouGov’s measure – 76% think you’re incompetent, 80% dislike you, 80% don’t believe you’ll ever be Prime Minister and as for people voting who they thought did a better job of leading the Party, you scored 35% compared to Jeremy Corbyn leading with 44%.

‘Win the Future’ is the new strapline you’re sticking to, how handy for a guy with no policies and no direction that the future isn’t written yet, but it won’t be primary colours with you still leading, you walking absence, it’ll be beige, beige, beige. The fact this abbreviates to WTF and what that usually stands for hilariously sums up how the majority of not just members but voters feel about you and what passes for your leadership, but how cringingly awful you are at promoting yourself or the party.

Nobody trusts you after you broke all your promises, nobody knows what you stand for when you relaunch yourself more often than you change your underwear and so I’m afraid I have to break it to you that you will never lead the country, you will never win, because unlike the Tories, we won’t support somebody with so little substance, nor back a liar. Next month at Labour Conference I really hope some home truths are going to hit you hard, you useless little man.

Cornish Damo provides this site and its content free of charge, but in order to continue doing so, to continue to rant and write and tell it like it is, impartially, independently and free of outside influence, your donations are essential. If you can afford to do so without hardship, please consider supporting my work via one of the options on the support us page.

Thank you for your solidarity and for supporting alternative media holding power and the mainstream media to account.

Ken Loach Expelled! This has to be the last straw.

Oi Keir, over here, I’ve got something for you!

Keir Starmer’s polling took a hammering the day he overturned an NEC panel to ensure Jeremy Corbyn remained suspended from taking his place as a Labour MP.

Today he demonstrated in no uncertain terms that he intends to prove he can poll even lower by seeing Ken Loach expelled from the Labour Party.

We knew already that he was coming after members of left wing groups, proscribed by the now majority right-wing NEC in an effort to purge socialists from the party and Ken was an official sponsor of one such group, Labour Against the Witch hunt. He was apparently deemed unfit to be a member because he refused to disown those he stands alongside on this and why on Earth would he do such a thing?He’s not you Starmer, you spineless Twunt!

His has been a life of socialism and film-making, more often than not the two blending, shining a light on the injustices of society and exposing those responsible over the last 60 years. Films like Cathy Come Home, Kes or I, Daniel Blake have exposed the gritty hard-nosed reality of life for too many people over far too many years, the rank inequality and the preservation of that from successive governments, finally coming close to ending it with Corbyn’s leadership, snatched away from us by the very shits now leading Labour into electoral oblivion, believing the only way they can win is to purge anyone who wouldn’t be just as good a fit in the Tory Party.

Starmer’s defenders, chiefly coming from the Tory press, have opted to smear Loach with accusations of Holocaust denial, something he has absolutely never done. Litigation would be a deserved response to this, but when Starmer’s supporters have demanded the proscription of left wing Jewish groups, apparently with no action required, they’re skating awfully close to accusations of antisemitism themselves. Lets also not forget that the party that is apparently no place for Ken Loach, is a place for Trevor Phillips, readmitted to Labour despite complaints of Islamophobia made to the party about him remaining unactioned upon.

It was almost predictable though. The left had a good day yesterday securing the votes to elect Seema Chandwani and Billy Hayes back onto the Conference Arrangements Committee, so Starmer has spat his dummy and decided the left need reminding that they aren’t wanted, that we should know our place, so deals us a psychological blow in the form of expelling one of our best loved, highest profile members. Make no mistake, this move was made to demoralise us, to encourage more of us to leave. It’s Labour Conference next month and there’s every chance dictatorial David Evans, Starmer’s as yet unratified General Secretary will get voted down. We need to make sure our delegates know in no uncertain terms that that is exactly what they must do. We need to stay and fight because right now there is no viable alternative to power for us. Yes we want the Tories out above all else but for that we have to be electable and we cannot be electable when our leaders are more interested in attacking us then attacking them and why? Because they have more in common with those bloody Tories than they do with us.

Never forget that Starmer has been shown to have lied to get elected leader, he has not kept his 10 pledges, he has not been an effective opposition, he is losing council seats and by-elections around the country and he absolutely must, must be sent a message from us now that it is he, HE, that must go and we can start by ensuring he has the Labour Conference from hell. He’s asked for it, his attacks on us, his appalling treatment of so many members not least Jeremy and Ken. We can start by sending Evans packing. We can start by calling him out for the snivelling Tony Blair wannabe he is and we need to send a message as well to those left Labour MP’s that their strongly worded letters are only ending up in an often emptied bin. Stop writing letters, stop hand wringing, stop procrastinating and do something about this before there’s no party left for you to belong to. Len McCluskey’s words the other day are absolutely on point, with Starmer at the helm the Labour Party could well go under. There’s nothing positive that can be said of Starmer’s tenure as leader, there’s literally nothing. It’s time we took our party back, its time the Socialist Campaign Group stood up and made themselves counted and Conference is our chance to fight back. Lets not waste it, otherwise what sort of a party is there, for the likes of Jeremy and Ken to come back to?

Cornish Damo provides this site and its content free of charge, but in order to continue doing so, to continue to rant and write and tell it like it is, impartially, independently and free of outside influence, your donations are essential. If you can afford to do so without hardship, please consider supporting my work via one of the options on the support us page.

Thank you for your solidarity and for supporting alternative media holding power and the mainstream media to account.

Incel ideology is terrorism. Say it.

On the evening of the 12th August we watched in horror as the events of the first mass shooting on British soil since 2012 unfolded in Keyham, Plymouth. The assailant, a 22 year old called Jake Davison, armed himself, shooting and killing 5 people, including his own mother and a child now reported to have been aged just 3, before shooting himself. First and foremost my heartfelt sympathies to the friends and families affected by this despicable act, I hope you are getting all the support you need at this traumatic time.

Davison was described by the BBC as a former employee of Babcock, that his social media was littered with American propaganda, that he loved guns. They have also repeatedly referred to him as a gunman or a shooter. Would they be calling him a gunman if he was a person of colour? Would they be calling him a gunman if he was Muslim? These are questions many are asking on social media, because so often if that were the case, you might expect him to be labelled a terrorist. The question a lot of people are asking is should this guy be called a terrorist and if so, why are our mainstream media, including the BBC, our publicly funded broadcaster not calling him such?

Look up the word terrorist in the dictionary and you’ll see that a terrorist is defined as someone committing violence and intimidation in pursuit of political aims. So what have we learnt about this guy’s politics? Not much if you rely on the BBC!

Well, he was a Trump supporter, he regarded Theresa May as a sell-out, so already we’re getting an impression of some pretty right-wing views here, if our Tory Party isn’t hardline enough for him. He was pro-gun, loved his guns; yet despite having known mental health issues he held a gun licence, massive questions need answering about that, especially in light of it having been taken from him in September of last year and Devon & Cornwall police returning it to him just last month. He was obsessed with the fact he didn’t have a girlfriend and that other men have wives and children to support them in their daily lives. He was embittered by this, he described himself as an incel, as an involuntary celibate, believing he was incapable of attracting women, was a so-called blackpiller in that he believed that this is genetic and the subculture and indoctrination of incel networks are characterised by deep misogyny and aggression towards the opposite sex. Since 2014 there have been at least 7 mass murders resulting in 56 deaths connected with this subculture. Members are typically white, male, straight, possess extremist views and radicalise their subscribers accordingly. Davison’s social media activity, his activity on YouTube, now thankfully deleted, bears out such beliefs in the angry tirades he filmed himself having. When you are being indoctrinated to think a certain way, when your mental health may be such that it renders you susceptible to certain suggestions, when you are having your behaviour altered by what you read, what you see and what you hear you are being radicalised, that is to say you are being trained to think and believe in certain things and in a certain way. How then is this not political? Politics pervades our everyday lives whether you notice this or not. I’m left wing, my videos are quite partisan I’m not afraid to admit as much because its what I believe in, I believe a socialist view is what is best for this country, I give a damn about other people and want to see everyone’s quality of life improve in a society that is far too unequal. If you think likewise, that’s probably what brought you here perhaps and what keeps you coming back maybe. The incel networks do just this too, however their beliefs are very right wing, a damn sight more extreme, far less reasonable and a heck of a lot more violent. It is for this reason that a machete attack on three people in Toronto, Canada last year resulting in one fatality was labelled a misogynist terrorist attack. The charges were 1st degree murder, terrorist activity and attempted murder, terrorist activity. The motive given was incel ideology. Terrorism based on misogynistic ideology – ideology is another word worth defining too, a system of ideas or ideals forming the basis of economic or political theory – politics again. This was a first in Canada, but its clear as day to see that that same ideology played a part in what happened in Plymouth. A different weapon, but the same misogynistic brainwashing, the same hard-right extremism is being evidenced.

So why, WHY is it so hard for our media to just come out and say it? It is the English language after all, these are our words and our definitions, so why are we shying away from this and as many people are rightfully asking across social media and I alluded to earlier, if this person was non-white, if this person was Muslim, for example, would we be using similar nervous language surrounding this terrorist in Plymouth?

I put a video out recently regarding the Batley & Spen by election and of course the subject of Jo Cox was prevalent once more and her killer also subscribed to hard right ideologies, he was involved with far right organisations both here in the UK and the US and when arrested he WAS held under the Terrorism Act 2000. Similar extremist ideologies, similar levels of indoctrination, in both cases there was history of mental health problems too, but why is one considered a terrorist, and Cox’s killer was labelled as such in several media outlets, but this guy Davison is only a gunman? Is it because he killed himself that his ideology no longer matters? Wording matters, terminology matters, how this crime gets recorded and reported and commented on from the media, to TV news, to MP’s matters because we can’t have one rule for some and not apply it to all. That definition of terrorism from earlier? The Terrorism Act 2000 repeats it almost word for word. So this does beg the question as to whether these men were particularly susceptible to these materials and therefore as a country we should be putting mental health at a far more prominent level of care, but also coming down harder on possession or access to extreme materials and ideologies and working with other countries to clamp down on this properly. It’s now been reported that his mother had been begging mental health services for help but was told they were short staffed and couldn’t. That’s on the Tories and their so-called health reforms that have been nothing of the sort and on a piss poor opposition health team doing anything but oppose. Mental health services have been woeful for too long, underfunded, underappreciated and those suffering from it, some of them will be susceptible to suggestion and far right dogma as has happened here and has happened before. It may come to a point as the investigation of this case plays out that it will be determined as an act of terrorism, for that is exactly what it was, but we shouldn’t have to wait for that, for our media to report these things factually and correctly, when we have already seen far too many similar cases before and especially when it gives an impression to some communities that they’d be treated differently if the perpetrator were one of them.

Cornish Damo provides this site and its content free of charge, but in order to continue doing so, to continue to rant and write and tell it like it is, impartially, independently and free of outside influence, your donations are essential. If you can afford to do so without hardship, please consider supporting my work via one of the options on the support us page.

Thank you for your solidarity and for supporting alternative media holding power and the mainstream media to account

Embrace Blair’s Legacy? Screw that Keith.

As sure as night follows day, Keir Starmer’s lack of self-awareness rumbles on as we’re now looking at yet another relaunch of his leadership. Corbyn just getting his feet under the table was enough to give the out of touch majority of the Labour PLP a collective brain aneurysm, but Starmer can fail and fail and fail again to make any progress, any inroads with the public, can stand around awkwardly with ice cream and continue to be a pale, male and stale mire of nothingness and still not a peep from them.

This time he’s gone full Blairite, he wants to embrace Blair’s legacy going forwards. How utterly, mind-screamingly stupid a move this is. Blair’s legacy is toxic, but having surrounded himself with the same right-wingers Blair surrounded himself with, we’ve seen them in recent appointments, Peter Mandelson to start with of course, Mr I work every day to undermine Jeremy Corbyn brought in to try and make Labour electable when the majority of members were inspired to join the very party then led by Corbyn, that Mandy despised so much, members who would never join a party led by a Blair clone, so little wonder the party is losing on average 250 members a day, having lost 120,000 of them overall since Starmer took over as leader. There have sadly been others from Blairs team join since.

Starmer is a man so bereft of ideas, that he has surrounded himself by the worst right wingers perverting the Labour Party, that he’s now gone full Tory. Tony Blair was regarded of course by Margaret Thatcher as her greatest achievement – a tame opposition party that would never rock the establishment boat, a safe pair of hands for vested interests should her own party ever fall out of control. Mandelson of course famously said the Labour voter would have nowhere else to go, that this was the perfect scam, the wealthy would never have anything to fear and a servile public would just have to lump it. Labour’s landslide in 1997 was massive, but it came off the back of an incredibly corrupt, far too long tenure of Tory rule – they’d been in power for 18 years. Just as Starmer lied about being a socialist to get elected Labour leader – if only trading standards could be applied to him, he’d have gone months ago – Blair did likewise, it soon became apparent what a weasel he was, because he was essentially a bastard Tory and did bastard Tory things. No council house building, despite knowing it was a crisis then and continued with right to buy, losing even more of our housing stock, tuition fees were introduced, bank deregulation began, did nothing to reverse anti-trade union legislation that Thatcher had brought in, in fact boasted about how tough it was, benefit cuts to single mothers and refugees seeking asylum, disability assessments were introduced, kids as young as 10 with ASBO’s being named and shamed, racially profiling Muslims for stop and search and told them if they didn’t like it to take off their veils, saddling the NHS with PFI’s condemning them to massive debts and paving the way for private firms to come into the NHS, built on since savagely by the Tories, there were outsourcing disasters under Blair as well, he introduced it in the late 90’s and the Tories copied his example after, so many of the problems we see today were happening then too and actually started there. Oh and there was of course the matter of an illegal war that killed a million people. Labour’s polling in subsequent elections suffered as a result – they kept power, such was the dire state of the Tories at that time, Blair of course had Murdoch shielding the public from much of his mess at the time too, but their polling suffered and the party finances did as well. Blair left Labour £25m in debt and utterly reliant on donors for survival. It’s an uncomfortable truth for Blair’s defenders that actually the closest we’ve come to power since ‘97 and the only election where Labour actually gained seats instead of losing them was in 2017 under Jeremy Corbyn. In fact Corbyn got more votes in 2017 than Blair did in 2001 or 2005, it is our crap electoral system that means that that achievement did not translate into more seats than it did. Blair oversaw a haemorrhage in support, a decline in voter turnout as well – turnout used to be over 70% in a general election, it hasn’t managed that since 1997, again, the closest it got was 2017 when a candidate for change, a candidate that inspired people stood for election and offered genuine choice, not two shades of Tory. So much for Mandelson saying we had nowhere else to go, we just stopped voting.

Instead of embracing these facts, instead of accepting Blair and his ilk are yesterday’s men and learning the lessons of recent history, Starmer is now promoting himself as the natural successor to Blair. Blair could at the very least think for himself Keith, you have to focus group everything. Yours so far is a legacy of pint holding and pointing, of standing awkwardly on the beach in a suit as people look away from you, of standing on a platform of socialism and then tearing up every pledge you made. Of losing by-election after by-election, only winning the last one in all likelihood, because the Green Party didn’t stand. Of sacking every socialist from your front bench as soon as you could find an excuse to do so whilst letting off right-wingers bringing shame on the party, of cheering on sporting events whilst failing to show solidarity for your own MP’s who have been vilified or attacked, for shamelessly capitalising on brave stances such as that of Dawn Butler by begging for cash whilst again offering her no solidarity, paying off ex-staff despite legal advice saying the party had a case against them, constantly attacking the left so that members are driven away in disgust. Between lost membership revenue and paying off people you had no right to, the party is now apparently on the brink of bankruptcy, you’re sacking staff as a result, yet hiring more on poorer terms and conditions turning the party of the working class into a bad fire and rehire employer. You’ve overseen left unions withdraw funding and consider disaffiliation, you’ve consistently blocked the release of the Forde Report which no doubt would expose the wrongdoing of many of those you’d paid off, you called Black Lives Matter a moment and with recent proscriptions and the lack of action taken after attacks on left wing Jewish members, not to mention those showing solidarity with Palestine, you’ve overseen a party that has consistently attacked its own left wing more than the government and led the party to become more racist. You’ve utterly failed to act as a leader of the opposition by consistently agreeing with the government on everything, from demanding schools reopen, no ifs, no buts, no equivocation, to demanding they lift restrictions even faster, based on no scientific evidence, but for crass, blatant political gain. You failed to demand male politicians resign, but are quick to demand female ones do – the difference in your responses to Matt Hancock and Nicola Sturgeon. The failure to hold the worst Tory government in modern history to account at the most crucial of times, during this pandemic has failed a nation and cost lives and throughout all of that, you’ve offered no alternatives and no policies.

Frankly we’re at the point where even if you brought in policies and you’ve talked about a Green New Deal in recent days, who would trust you? Who would believe you? You haven’t the conviction to stand by your own pledges, you keep trying to remake yourself every other week with another relaunch, yet the problem remains you are a singularly dislikeable, wooden, political vacuum, an empty suit, an advert for brylcreem but nothing else. You have no original ideas, you cannot think for yourself, you’ve been dishonest in your pronouncements, you’ve all but sent our party broke and now you’re wining and dining donors to fill the void but they aren’t biting much are they Keith! Even Blair couldn’t pull the party out of debt, it was Corbyn that did that, by increasing membership, increasing revenue by embracing the people. Many small donations made a big difference. It wasn’t Corbyn leaving us £25m in the hole, he left us £13m in the black and you and David Evans your unelected, unratified General Secretary have left him suspended from the party for far too long, despite an NEC panel clearing him, have given no indicator when this will be lifted and this has pissed off members possibly more than any other single action you’ve taken and for all that cash he injected into party coffers you seem to have blown it all and have fuck all to show for it.

Tony Blair is reviled in this day and age, people went off him fast, particularly members quickly enough at the time he was still leader. You really think that in this era of social media, of wokeness, of people being better informed than ever before as newspapers fall into decline and independent media offers alternative views and news that won’t be covered elsewhere that you can pull off a con like this when it seems you need someone to tell you what colour underwear to put on each day, let alone come up with a policy? Then you really are as daft as you look. You want us to embrace Blair’s legacy? Forget it. Much of the rot the Tories have wrought in recent years has built off what he started. To embrace Blairs legacy is to inspire the Tories, not oppose them. Your predecessor showed you the way, you pretended to be like him, yet now you say you’re like Tony fucking Blair. No politician as blatantly dishonest and lacking in principles as Starmer will ever succeed. It’s way past time the Party got rid. Clearly it isn’t true that anyone but Corbyn would be 20 points ahead. Its time we demanded he go, no ifs, no buts, no equivocation.

Cornish Damo provides this site and its content free of charge, but in order to continue doing so, to continue to rant and write and tell it like it is, impartially, independently and free of outside influence, your donations are essential. If you can afford to do so without hardship, please consider supporting my work via one of the options on the support us page.

Thank you for your solidarity and for supporting alternative media holding power and the mainstream media to account.

Where’s the money gone Keir & Dave?

Fire and Rehire, the pernicious practice of firing your employees unless they accept new contracts with poorer conditions. Made illegal in many countries, the Tories won’t do it here, so its up to the Trade Unions to defend their members from being mistreated in this way. You wouldn’t expect the political arm of their movement, the Labour Party to indulge in this practice however, but sadly, such is the decline of the Party under the regime of Keir Starmer & David Evans, Fire and Rehire is exactly what they’re doing. Labour is in a financial mess entirely of the making of the two aforementioned idiots. When they took over the party, they enjoyed being debt free and had reserves of £13.5m in the bank. 18 months later, we’re told that the party is one payroll away from bankruptcy. Where’s the money Keir & Dave? What have you blown it on? Settling stupid legal fees and driving away members, losing their dues to the tune of an estimated £6m, a figure quoted this morning by Howard Beckett on The Not the Andrew Marr Show.

What has been reported by Skwawkbox and later by The Independent is that a third of Labour Party staff have been made redundant, yet the party is still taking people on, employing them on temporary contracts on much poorer conditions. Starmer made a big speech not long back condemning Fire and Rehire, but given he’s lied about pretty much everything since he got elected leader, not least of which the 10 pledges he stood for election on, it’s no surprise he’s actually gone back on this as well, made even worse by many of the staff in question finding out from the Guardian newspaper instead of the party.

You can imagine the Trade Unions are up in arms with this. Unite and the GMB, both affiliated unions, both considerable donors to Labour, but not typically from the same wing of the party are singing from the same hymn sheet now. They’ve slammed this action, done without consultation, they’re particularly scathing that they’ve gone for redundancies straight away instead of trying to cut costs in other ways first, such as reducing upper management pay – none of them are getting the axe – and have demanded a response from Labour. So far I’ve not heard that this has happened.

Beckett this morning has also said Labour would be treated like any other bad employer. The party of the workers facing strike action from the very trade unions who fund them and rightfully so as that party seeks to turn away from representing the working class, turning away from socialism and turning into the same Blue Labour, Blairite, tory-lite party that turned so many of us off before. With so many of Starmer’s recent LOTO staff appointments being essentially a Blairite reunion – I bet they got a good employment package – that’s where we are. A party both financially and morally bankrupt at the top, becoming ever more distanced from its own founding principles.

Cornish Damo provides this site and its content free of charge, but in order to continue doing so, to continue to rant and write and tell it like it is, impartially, independently and free of outside influence, your donations are essential. If you can afford to do so without hardship, please consider supporting my work via one of the options on the support us page.

Thank you for your solidarity and for supporting alternative media holding power and the mainstream media to account.

Happy Birthday NHS. The best present you can give it, is to pledge to save it.

A big Happy Birthday to the NHS, What a fantastic achievement to have lasted for 73 years particularly in light of the fact the last 40 odd years of it, its hasn’t exactly been in safe hands. The NHS is proof of the success of Socialism, that when it was created by Nye Bevan to serve the population based on their health needs, free at point of use, it was a game changer. Never before had free care for all been offered, never before had the fear of how to pay for your health needs been completely removed from everyone. The diseases and illnesses of the day were horrifying. Thanks to the NHS, mass vaccination came into being. Today as a result of that, smallpox has been eradicated and polio is almost there now too.

Those who work in the NHS do so for the common good, they can devote themselves wholly to caring, not having to worry about whether their sick patient can pay for their services and their services are entirely evidence based, thanks to all the research and breakthroughs made over the years by the NHS. All treatment decisions today are based on tried and tested methods, its hard to imagine there was ever a time they weren’t.

Free contraception, IVF care, NHS screening programs, the list of achievements is endless. You know there’s a but coming though don’t you.

The NHS is under threat. It’s a refrain that’s been used at every election, yet for most of us its still standing. This illusion that everything is fine though is just that.

It’s hard to imagine there was ever a time it wasn’t there for us, but it is crumbling. It has been underfunded for years, doctors not so long ago were going on strike – remember that?

All the time we’re told it is being privatised, yet it remains free at point of use, so are we being bullshitted? No, we aren’t.

The damage started under Thatcher. Until she came to power, the post-war consensus on the NHS was that it worked, it had value, even wealthy people appreciated it because if rampant illness and disease amongst the poor was dealt with, their own health benefitted too. Thatcher brought in NHS Trusts, she introduced the element of competition into the NHS, but only so far as one NHS Trust could bid off another for services, managing to get waiting times down, but at the expense of quality of care. She approached the NHS as a commodity, the need to keep people at work mattered more, the economy is king and all that garbled bollocks the Tories still spout to this day.

Blair came in on a promise to undo these Thatcher reforms, to do away with her internal market as it was called, Labour claiming for the first time the NHS is for sale under the Tories, it’s a huge part of how he won his landslide in 1997. As with most Blairite election promises however, he was full of shit and actually strengthened the internal market instead. He supported private investment. Outsourcing of medical services was started by Blair, he did love hugging millionaires didn’t he and of course where his name is associated with the NHS, PFI contracts to build hospitals will be the first thing that springs to mind, saddling the NHS with crippling amounts of debt and a poorer outcome. For every £200m spent, PFI hospitals had 28% fewer beds and resulted in the loss of over 1000 doctors and nurses.

The worst was to come however when Andrew Lansley as Health Secretary under David Cameron brought in his reforms to the NHS. It has been the biggest single driver of privatisation of the NHS in its history. Mass strike action by health workers, the junior doctors strikes over a set of plans that promised greater patient choice, but instead became a butchery of NHS services, chopping up the most profitable bits and handing them off to outsourcing companies. Virgin, Serco, Circle, the names are familiar to you.

It should be noted that under the Tories from the coalition years to today, never once have they appointed a Health Secretary with any career experience in Health. Lansley’s father was a pathologist, that’s as close as it gets! He was a civil servant, he was succeeded by Jeremy Hunt, most notable for driving staff to go on strike and having written a book about how to sell the NHS. He was succeeded by Matt Hancock, which we’ll leave there and now we’ve Sajid Javid the banker! Neither the Tories, nor the Blairites in the Labour Party truly give a stuff about the NHS. It continues to be eroded and we’re paying more and more for prescriptions, dental treatment, what will be exempted next?

Oh but its still free at point of use some of you will cry. Well yes, it is. For now. But all these outsourcing giants who have bought chunks of the NHS – do you really think they’re doing so altruistically? No, they’re doing it because they can cream a stinking fortune off the top for themselves. If there was no return, they wouldn’t have bought into it and all the money they are trousering would, under a properly funded independent NHS, be going into your care.

Despite all of this, they have led the vaccination program for Covid, thank God the Tories had enough sense to leave that to the experts and stay out of it, though of course its not like they’ve had much reward. 11 years of austerity and NHS wages are 15% lower than they should be, hence the calls for that 15% pay rise. What have this government offered them, for being on the front line of the Covid crisis, for saving us when they couldn’t always save themselves? bin bags instead of PPE, claps every Thursday, cards too and now the George Cross for the NHS! Who got the thank you cards contract and why could that money not be used to boost some nurses pay instead?

The NHS is a socialist creation, it is socialism in action. Up until Thatcher the value of it was seen by every party and every person. Since then the rot has only accelerated. Only socialism will save it for future generations, so it’ll still be around in another 73 years. Where that socialist option is right now? Well that’s a very good question. It needs taking out of Tory hands though, that much is a given. Look at what happened recently here in Cornwall just as a for instance, such is the state of things right now, our only major hospital and ambulances can’t even get in, a situation being repeated across the country as the Covid crisis carries on, with no end in sight as they look set to open the country up again, repeating their mistakes for a third time, telling us we don’t need masks any more just to compound it.

Take a look at America – there’s the alternative and already American healthcare is creeping in here, buying up our GP’s surgeries for starters. It is happening now, it is getting worse, this is not crying wolf though you’ve heard it many times. Can you afford to pay for your healthcare? Can you afford not to vote to save the NHS?

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