Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 7 February 2007

New Labour:

Sold to big business

AS THE 'cash for honours' inquiry rumbles on, panic is growing at the top of New Labour out of fear that one or more members of Blair's closest entourage will be charged by the police. Such an event would be an unprecedented scandal for a serving prime minister and could lead to Blair's immediate resignation.

Nothing sums up the transformation of New Labour into a party wholly-dominated by big business more than the sleaze it is now drowning in. Financial sleaze was once the hallmark of the Tories - now New Labour is leading the way. The Labour leadership have not only put up 'honours' for sale to billionaires, but having first 'sold off' the Labour Party, have gone on to sell public assets - schools and hospitals - to the highest bidder.

Blair in particular - already a 'lame duck' - has been further tarnished by the latest scandal. But he is so removed from reality that he seems oblivious to the fact he is now as hated as Thatcher once was, summed up by his refusal to say more on the date of his departure than "you will have to put up with me for a bit longer yet".

He is spending his time buying up his fifth home - giving the Blairs an average mortgage of 20,000 a month, more than millions of workers earn in a year! No wonder that 56% of the public think that Blair should resign immediately.

Even if no charges are brought in the inquiry, New Labour is facing major further electoral damage in the May elections. Probably the main reasons why Blair is not being forced out early by other New Labour leaders is their hope for a smooth transition to Gordon Brown in the summer, and the fact that they and particularly Brown, have no desire to share responsibility for May's election results.

Faced with the threat of a spread of Avian flu, British authorities rushed to get rid of 160,000 turkeys, but so supine are the Labour leaders that even when the present peerages scandal is doing themselves damage, they are not prepared to act in a like manner!

Nonetheless, the pressure on Blair from many sources to resign sooner rather than later is growing. In addition to the financial sleaze surrounding him he is also under increasing pressure to distance himself from US president Bush, particularly over the question of Iran.

The very fact that a section of the state are considering bringing charges against individuals close to Blair is an indication of how discredited Blair has become, the general atmosphere of hostility towards him and the particularly brazen character of the financial sleaze. However, for him to go by this means, which would have an element of a British 'Watergate', would further undermine not just Blair but the whole political establishment.

While New Labour is the focus of the peerages scandal, all the mainstream capitalist parties are implicated. The selling of peerages is nothing new. On the contrary, as the Financial Times casually stated: "This implicit trade, whatever its morality, is centuries old". It is the inevitable consequence of an unelected second chamber.

The House of Lords is a relic of feudalism, and should be abolished. The ruling class, when faced in the past with the prospect of a left Labour government coming under huge pressure from below to carry out pro-working class measures, viewed the House of Lords as an important safeguard for its own interests, and would prefer to keep it as a safeguard for the future.

It is ironic, however, that in the recent past the House of Lords has acted to ameliorate some of the most reactionary policies of New Labour. This does not alter its fundamental nature, but is an indication of how the voice of the working class is almost totally absent from the House of Commons, leaving it to some of the lords to give an indication of the likely backlash on some issues.

The sooner Blair goes the better. But Brown will continue with neo-liberal policies and all the politicians of the three main parties compete for who can propose the most anti-working class, pro-big business policies.

Never has the gap between the population - only 11% of whom support any further privatisation, for example - and the House of Commons been so large. As the front page article states, the need for a new mass party that actually fights for the interests of working class people - rather than for the interests of the billionaires - is increasingly urgent.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.

In The Socialist 7 February 2007:


Sold to big business

Can the Left reclaim Labour?

Merseyside Campaign for a new workers' party

Website of the Campaign for a New Workers' Party

Civil servants' strike

Interview with Mark Serwotka: "This is just the beginning of the campaign"

Welsh strikers close down Assembly

Socialist Party NHS campaign

Anger at union leaders' timidity

Manchester nurses strike against health cuts


Change the system not the climate!

Bush's bio-fuel bull

Socialist Party news and analysis

Has Manchester struck it lucky?

Socialist Party campaigns

Camden council blames cuts on 'spending gap'

Don't privatise social housing!

Tenants pay when things go wrong

Coventry - a victory for determination

Socialist Party Marxist analysis

Rising anger and discontent in Europe

International socialist news and analysis

Darfur - another failure of Western 'conflict resolution'

Sri Lanka: Keep up the protests

Socialist Party Marxist analysis

The writing on the Chinese wall

Workplace news

Stop the Valentine's Day pay massacre !

Striking back at the privateers

Corus deal threatens new cost-cutting

Cabin crew angry over BA deal

May Day greetings


Home   |   The Socialist 7 February 2007   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleRMT Labour Party affiliation debate - where do socialists stand?

triangleSouthampton: the cuts or no cuts election

triangleWindrush scandal: Tories and Blairites must go

triangleTories out!

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns



Journalists' union leaders defeat call for political fund, but potential for left grows



Retail union backs zero-hour ban, leaders oppose rank-and-file coordination



McDonald's strikers: "We demand a living wage and decent conditions"



Sheffield and South Yorkshire: no to closures - defend our NHS



Southampton: the cuts or no cuts election



School strike forces head to say privatisation will stop



College protest against job losses



Bromley library workers win strike campaign



UCU members vote to end pensions dispute



Usdaw conference 2018: time for new era of fighting trade unionism



Victorious Fearnville Fields campaigners thank the Socialist



Hull says no to war, no to austerity


The Socialist

The Socialist - a fighting, campaigning, workers' paper


Socialist Party

Building fund: 150,000 milestone smashed!


Fighting Fund

Give us your change (and more) to fight for system change!

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777


Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551



Alphabetical listing

April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018