Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/913/23434
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I am old enough and grey enough to remember the formation of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the early 1980s. That too was to stop a left-wing Labour government from coming to power.
The quote I most remember from that period was from one of the SDP's founders. Shirley Williams (now a Lib Dem baroness) described socialists who favoured mandatory reselection of MPs, including supporters of Militant (forerunner of the Socialist Party), as "career assassins".
That's what behind today's foaming at the mouth of the right wing in Labour. They see a Corbyn-led Labour Party as an end to the perks, privileges, and comfy existence of their Westminster careers.
It has nothing to do with infiltration or splitting. It's all about self-interest. Same dirt, new wrappings.
Clive Walder, Birmingham
No nukes - no wars
Youth Against the War on the Feb 24 2007 anti-Trident demo, photo Pedro
The parliamentary vote in favour of the warmongers dream to renew the Trident nuclear weapons system was not just pointless, but represents a colossal waste of tens of billions of pounds.
This money would be better spent on the diversification of the jobs of the thousands of highly skilled engineers whose work currently relies upon Trident.
Perhaps surprisingly, Leicester East Labour MP Keith Vaz voted alongside Corbyn in opposing Trident. But Vaz is no peace activist. Earlier in the year he justified his support for the bombing of Syria, by relating it to his support for the ongoing Saudi air-strikes in Yemen.
Mike Barker, Leicester
Brexit's bully bosses
British capitalists are already saying because of Brexit they may not be able to commit to former chancellor Osborne's future 'living wage' increases, or sustain an already weak set of employment laws - while taking away every possible right for workers to try and defend their terms and conditions. Apparently, this is due to us now having to compete with low wage economies such as Bangladesh, Vietnam and China to name a few.
All this and more while a bunch of careerist parliamentary Labour Party politicians, silently supported by some careerist trade union officials, are hell bent on saving their unearned extremely generous terms and conditions.
Workers created the trade unions and supported the formation of Labour - what they thought at the time a political party of their own. We will not continue to standby while these careerists greedily feed at the table of British capitalism at our expense.
Rebel with a cause, Rotherham
I read in the news that woolly mammoths only died out 5-6,000 years ago. In the same paper it says some bloke has signed to play football for Man United for about £100 million.
Now, I hustle around seven days a week as a taxi driver to make maybe £500. So at this rate it will take me 4,000 years to make that much.
Add on his wages and "woolly mammoths may walk the earth again" before I get there!
Chris Parry, Bristol
First the Blairites changed the whole voting system to take what little was left out of the hands of activists in the Labour Party and the trade unions.
Then, to their horror, hundreds of thousands of the electorate paid up to vote for someone advocating left-wing policies - like reversing the privatisation of the NHS, and nationalising the energy companies, railways and steel; protecting workers' rights, building affordable homes, stopping wasting money on nuclear weapons and war.
After Jeremy got elected, hundreds of thousands more joined and continued to join. Panic at Westminster.
There was no point in forcing a leadership election; Corbyn was simply too popular. With unbelievable arrogance and total disregard for their own members, nine months after a massive mandate, 172 MPs went for a vote of no confidence.
Jeremy had too much respect for the membership to take notice of them and he refused to resign. Panic, panic, panic!
Change the rules again, and take the vote from anyone who'd joined in the previous six months - unless they pay an extra £25. Then set a narrow 48-hour window for the £25 to be paid.
183,000 actually paid in 48 hours - incredible! Then some cheeky disenfranchised supporters, raising the cost through crowd funding, challenged losing their vote through the courts, and won. Then, using members' money, the Blairites appealed this at a cost of £80,000 - now passed onto those members who dared to insist on their democratic rights through the courts.
Enough is enough!
Mary Jackson, Doncaster
In The Socialist 24 August 2016:
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