By Kevin Courtney Education Secretary Justine Greening has abandoned the last vestiges of Nicky Morgan’s Education Excellence Everywhere white paper. This is a stunning victory for parent and teacher campaigners. [continue...]
Jon Trickett MP Six failed years of the Tories have given us a crisis in the NHS, economic failure and working people worse off, and Theresa May clearly has no idea what to do about it. The only thing she offers is an empty slogan. [continue...]
John McDonnell MP The ONS public sector finance figures out last week, show that public sector net debt has increased by £58.6bn since November 2015 and is now at £1,655.1 billion at the end of November 2016, equivalent to 84.5 per cent of GDP. [continue...]
By Mick Brooks Momentum was set up in the wake of Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign in 2015 to become leader of the Labour Party. This was an inspiring movement involving hundreds of thousands of people who not only joined the Labour Party to vote for Corbyn but also staffed phone banks and worked hard to convince others that his election could be a turning point in British politics. [continue...]
By Barry Ewart A comprehensive housing policy by Labour would not only help to address the current housing crisis in the UK but could also help to contribute to state-led public investment which could power the economy out of recession. To achieve this perhaps Labour could: [continue...]
By Liz Davies and Mike Phipps What is happening in Aleppo is a human rights calamity. [continue...]
By Maria Exall This discussion document is an attempt to draw out the significant issues that have arisen in the debate within Momentum about its future orientation, decision making and policy making structures. The election of Jeremy Corbyn to the leadership of the Labour Party is the biggest opportunity for making the case for socialism within British politics for a generation. We must make the most of this opportunity and that includes making the right decisions on the structure of Momentum. [continue...]
EU Scrooges Spoil Greeks’ Christmas
By Mick Brooks
The Syriza government in Greece decided recently that they had a little money available to take the sharp edge off never-ending austerity. They decided to:
• Hand out €617m (less than 0.5% of Greek Gross Domestic Product or GDP) to I.6 million pensioners surviving on less than €800 per month.
• Relieve the Aegean islands from VAT. Apart from their remoteness, the eastern islands have borne a terrific burden of supporting thousands of refugees, without support from the EU.
• Promise a grand total of €11.5m on free school meals for poor children. [continue...]
By Martin Wicks Local Government is facing an unprecedented financial crisis resulting from the austerity programme and changes in the funding system. The allocations for funding for 2014-15 and 2015-16 were set on the basis of reductions in 2013-14 funding. The coalition government then abandoned the uprating of grants in line with an annual assessment of local needs. A new assessment is not due until 2020. Although councils will eventually be able to keep all their business rates this will be at the expense of declining government grant. By 2020 many authorities will receive no grant at all. [continue...]
By Barry Ewart Susan Watkins in a piece in the New Left Review (September/October 2016) makes the excellent point that capital seems to want everything for free. If you think about it we pay our taxes for education and health and capital is presented with educated and healthy workers for free! And it is mainly state-led public investment supported R&D that is delivered to capital for free (including the computer) and we even subsidise our employers by paying our own fares to work or in buying cars and paying for petrol to get there, so perhaps a left wing democratic socialist alternative should offer some things for free too such as free public transport (and another member at a branch meeting recently suggested we could have congestion charges to also help to pay for this?). [continue...]
Rail Dispute; what is Peter Wilkinson up to? “Over the next three years we’re going to be having punch ups and we will see industrial action and I want your support,” Peter Wilkinson told residents in Croydon Town Hall last February, people who are also the hapless ‘customers’ of Southern Rail. [continue...]
New Labour dissected Mike Phipps reviews New Labour: Was the Gain Worth the Continuing Pain?, by Dr Gaye Johnston, published on Kindle (ref: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01LYD2JK2 ), by Edition Publishing. [continue...]
Vote for Len McCluskey!
The NEC of the LRC decided at its meeting on December 10th to support the re-election of Len McCluskey
as General Secretary of Unite the union and support the United Left slate within the union. [continue...]
Southern Rail Chaos By Mick Brooks There seems to be a competition among Tory cabinet ministers as to which one can be the most unpopular with the public. Transport Secretary Chris Grayling is definitely in the running. [continue...]
LRC STATEMENT ON MOMENTUM There can be little doubt that recent days have been damaging to Momentum’s reputation. Divisive rhetoric and personalised attacks - from whatever source - can only play into the hands of our opponents, and undermine our credibility. Any camp pursuing witch-hunts, vendettas or using the language of witch hunts against individuals will only do further damage, and put the organisation’s future in jeopardy. [continue...]
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