A vote to get out of the EU is a vote against TTIP.
Archive for the ‘Conservative Party’ Category
‘Left’ Brexit collapses as Theresa May poised to announce end of free movement for new EU migrants next month.
Brexit Nothing to do with Trump as Brexit ‘left’. (Dinner with Donald – Saturday Night)
A few days ago Counterfire published this arrogant article,
Those who are trying to block Brexit, using anti-racist and pro-migrant arguments need to think again, argues Shabbir Lakha
In arguing to block Brexit, people are whitewashing what the EU as an institution actually is. We are now over 6 months on from the EU referendum and the debates on whether or not we should stay in the EU should long be over, but some have taken to fighting to stay in the EU at all costs and have even tried to make opposing Brexit a precondition to stopping Trump.
Let’s stop pretending the EU is some bastion of human rights and anti-racism, when in fact, it has a record of the opposite, and let’s unite around fighting racism, and for a People’s Brexit instead of a Tory one.
Well the Tory Brexit is the only one we’ve got.
And leaving the EU is certainly not helping the cause of anti-racism.
The superior sounding moralist Lakha thinks that EU “neo-liberalism” has ” both disenfranchised people and fuelled racism.”
What words will Counterfire find for this Brexit move?
Theresa May is next month poised to announce the end of free movement for new EU migrants on the same day that she formally triggers Brexit negotiations.
The Prime Minister is expected to say that EU citizens who travel to Britain after she triggers Article 50 will no longer have the automatic right to stay in the UK permanently.
They will instead be subject to migration curbs after Britain leaves the European Union, which could include a new visa regime and restricted access to benefits.
Mrs May is expected to say that EU migrants who arrived in the UK before the “cut-off date” will have their rights protected as long British citizens living elsewhere in Europe are granted the same assurance.
Iain Duncan Smith, a leading Eurosceptic conservative MP, said that that announcement will show that Mrs May is taking control of Britain’s borders while giving clarity to the 3.6million EU migrants already living in the UK.
He said: “Theresa understands that if you want to take control you have to command the high ground. She will be giving clarity by setting a clear deadline while the European Union looks increasingly muddled and mean-spirited“.
Calls for Trump Visit to UK to be Cancelled as Nigel Farage Britain should follow Donald Trump’s lead and introduce ‘extreme vetting.’
Well done, my good and faithful servant!
As UKIP is doing well in some Stoke-on-Trent by-election opinion polls this should be borne in mind:
The Mirror reports.
The ex-Ukip leader was unable to name a single US terror attack committed by a refugee
Nigel Farage has welcomed Donald Trump’s Muslim ban, despite being unable to name a US terror attack committed by a refugee.
It came just months after Farage himself said Trump’s plan to ban Muslims from travelling to America made him feel “uncomfortable.”
He told the BBC’s Sunday Politics: “He’s entitled to do this. He was voted in on this ticket.”
Asked specifically if he agreed with the ban, he said: “Well I do. Because I think that if you just look at what is happening in France and Germany after Mrs Merkel’s policy on this which was to let everybody in from virtually anywhere, look what it’s led to.
Calls are being made to cancel a proposed state visit to the UK by President Trump after he issued an executive order clamping down on immigration to the US.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said it would be “totally wrong” for the visit to go ahead later this year.
A petition to stop it has reached over 200,000 meaning it will be considered for debate in Parliament.
The visit was announced during PM May’s trip to the US – no date has been set.
Downing Street were asked for a response to the calls to cancel. A spokesman said: “We extended the invite and it was accepted.”
Alex Salmond, the SNP’s foreign affairs spokesman, said he thought the state visit was “a very bad idea”.
Also appearing on Sky News’ Sophy Ridge, he said: “You shouldn’t be rushing into a headlong relationship with the President of the United States.”
Mr Salmond said reports Mr Trump was reluctant to meet Prince Charles during the visit were “an indication of the sort of enormous difficulties you get into when you hold somebody tight who is unpredictable, who has a range of views you find unacceptable.”
And Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said the visit should not happen while the executive order was in place.
He told Sky News: “I am quite clear, this ban is cruel, this ban is shameful, while this ban is in place we should not be rolling out the red carpet for President Trump.”
For the moment Trump is looking forward to having tea and crumpets with the Queen, and a good laugh over this Tweet of his:
Trump and His Blessed Friend.
Before the UK EU Referendum the Editor of New Left Review wrote,
…a vote to remain, whatever its motivation, will function in this context as a vote for a British establishment that has long channelled Washington’s demands into the Brussels negotiating chambers, scotching hopes for a ‘social Europe’ since the Single European Act of 1986. A Leave vote would be a salutary shock to this trans-Atlantic oligopoly. It would not bring about a new golden age of national sovereignty, as Labour, Tory and UKIP Brexiters like to claim; decision-making would remain subordinate to Atlanticist structures. It would certainly involve a dip in GDP—around 3 per cent, on the most plausible estimates, so smaller than the contraction of 2009. But the knock-on effects of a leave vote could be largely positive: disarray, and probably a split, in the Conservative Party; preparations in Scotland for a new independence ballot.
Susan Watkins Oppositions. New Left Review. No 98. March-April 2016.
Immediately after the result Watkins’ partner Tariq Ali, who had campaigned for a Leave vote with an array of groupuscules, stated this to Tele Sur (a multi-state funded pan–Latin American terrestrial and satellite television sponsored by the governments of Venezuela, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Uruguay and Bolivia that is headquartered in Caracas Venezuela, about which little needs to be added…)
British-Pakistani intellectual, writer and journalist, Tariq Ali, told teleSUR on Friday that the majority of British voters gave the EU “a big kick in its backside,” explaining that the majority of working class “leave” voters felt that overall the EU did not benefit them, was undemocratic and an organization for the rich and the banks.
Ali lamented the fact that “right-wing “leave” supporters used xenophobia and racism to attack refugees and migrants.”
His principal suggestion, however, was that there should be ” new elections, because we want a newly-elected government to carry through the negotiations—hopefully a Labour government under Jeremy Corbyn and not some wing of the Conservative Party.”
Alas, there were no new elections and Corbyn did not form a Labour government.
In her analysis of the result Susan Watkins concluded (Casting off ? NLR 100, July August 2016)
For now, though, it is plain that Blairized Britain has taken a hit, as has the Hayekianized eu. Critics of the neoliberal order have no reason to regret these knocks to it, against which the entire global establishment—Obama to Abe, Merkel to Modi, Juncker to Xi—has inveighed. Which will ultimately prove more important, and what the side-effects of each will be, remains to be seen.
Ali at least appears to be one of those who consider that Trump’s victory was in part a result of opposition to this ‘neo-liberal order’.
This is a transcription of some of Ali’s words in a video talk about Trump.
A very deep cancer at the heart of modern liberalism today that since the 90s since the birth and emergence of this particular form of capitalism under which we live and which is referred to as neo-liberalism to give a new tag, but which is capitalism all the same, and which is concerned with making profits but nowadays concerned with making profits with no regard for people who are less well off… And so they imagine living in an insider bubble, cocooned from reality that they can get away with it endlessly. Well what the Trump triumph unprecedented in the 20th and 21st century reveals is that you can’t get away with it all the time.”
The idea that because people have become unhappy with the results of ‘globalisation’ or ‘neo-liberalism’ that they vote ‘populist’ (heavily inflected by the nationalist defence of the ‘people’ not just against elites but against other nations) is so well-worn that it operates as en excuse for considering anything more than the origins of this discontent. Watkins’ account of the Brexit ballot is a long and contentious essay on this theme.
If there’s any political thrust to this stand it’s as if there’s a healthy push to protest against the market, and the left’s task is to give it an extra shove.
Thinking about where the urge is going to end up once it gets into the political system is ignored.
Watkins and Ali are only some of the apparently left-wing people who failed to think through the consequences of their call for Brexit : what would happen after leaving the EU “Neo-liberal” framework (a gross simplification that ignores the weight of EU regulation) in a world dominated by large large capitalist powers.
The biggest capitalist power, the USA, is now in the hands of somebody who, whatever the motives of his supporters, who is pretty sure that Brexit is good news for his turn to an America First planet.
We await a response to the new shape of the “trans-Atlantic oligopoly” from the pro-Brexit left’s “insider bubble”.
He vowed to do a free trade deal with Britain, while attacking the European Union – which he described as “the consortium” – for making it hard for companies to do business.
Mr Trump said that the people of Britain voted for Brexit because “people want to know who is coming into their country and have control of trade”.
Then there’s this:
Brexit Good for Terra Firma, Bad for Most People, Hands Says (22nd of January, Bloomberg Markets).
The U.K.’s decision to leave the European Union is going to lead to dramatic changes in the way the country’s economy operates, which could create opportunities for a firm like Terra Firma Capital Partners, Chairman Guy Hands said.
The country will have to get rid of much of its social safety net and may see a 30 percent decline in wages in real terms in the next 20 years to enable it to compete outside of Europe, Hands said in an interview on Bloomberg Television. Debt will command higher interest rates as more risk is ascribed to an independent U.K., and immigrants from Europe will be replaced with workers from the Indian subcontinent and Africa, who may be willing to accept “substantially” lower pay, he said.
Still, ultimately, the exit will be a good thing for the economy, Hands said.
No doubt the pro-Brexit left imagine that this will all melt away with some big demonstrations and other protests culminating in a left ‘populism’.
There are few signs of anything with this degree of coherence or support emerging in the UK in the immediate future.
There is no sign that a force of this nature, based solely in Britain, outside the institutions in which the majority of the European Left operate, the EU, could stand up for a progressive model to oppose to Trump and his Tory friends.
May “left the door open for the greater involvement of US corporations in British healthcare.”
Before the Referendum the Socialist Workers Party warned against the EU’s ‘project’.
Another example of the neoliberal essence of the project is given by the secretive negotiations for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a free trade deal the EU is brokering with the US. TTIP will further prise open sectors such as education and health to the multinationals, and equalise environmental protection and workers’ rights at the lowest level across the two regions.
The Socialist Party claimed,
Voting to leave the EU would set TTIP back, and send shockwaves through the unelected command of the bosses’ EU.
Trade Unionist Against the EU published this claim:
these ‘trade deals’ are nothing new, just good old fashioned imperialism; a word that EU enthusiasts in the labour and trade union movement rarely like to use and with good reason.
Oddly, not only has no shock occurred, but TTIP Mark 2 looks already underway: this time negotiated directly between two bosses’ representatives, Trump and May.
Theresa May suggests UK health services could be part of US trade deal reports the Independent.
PM insists Government remains ‘committed to an NHS that is free at the point of use’.
Theresa May has left the door open for the greater involvement of US corporations in British healthcare as she arrives in America to lay the groundwork for a future trade deal.
Ms May would only say that she was committed to a health service that is free at the point of delivery, but made no comment on whether the NHS would be off the table in any future talks.
Trade and the UK’s economic relationship with the US will be one of the key pillars of the Prime Minister’s visit to Philadelphia and Washington DC.Asked whether health services might form a part of a potential deal, she said: “We’re at the start of the process of talking about a trade deal. We’re both very clear that we want a trade deal.
“It will be in the interests of the UK from my point of view, that’s what I’m going to be taking in, into the trade discussions that take place in due course.
“Obviously he will have the interests of the US. I believe we can come to an agreement that is in the interests of both.”
The Telegraph reports that the agenda is set out within the following framework,
- Defence: Mrs May will be keen to ensure that Mr Trump remains fully committee to the Nato military alliance which is a vital organisation to keep Russia in check in eastern Europe. Both leaders are expected to urge other Nato countries increase their defence spending to 2 per cent of gross national product.
- Trade deal: Mrs May and Mr Trump will seek to find common ground on trade and lay the groundwork for a new deal after Britain leaves the European Union around March 2019. Mr Trump is keen to agree deal within three months.
- Russia: Mrs May and Mr Trump will discuss the West’s concern about Russia.Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump will speak directly for the first time since the US president’s inauguration in a telephone call on Saturday.
Old fashioned imperialist bargaining between sovereign powers indeed.
Diane Abbott: Labour Should Hold its Nerve Against Racists Who Say: “‘What are you still doing here? We voted for Brexit.’”
What has happened to the “People’s Brexit“, or, as the leader of the Stop the War Coalition, Lindsey German, called, “a chance to shape the future of British society along egalitarian lines” ?
The Carnival of Reaction continues.
The latest news is that this individual had been elected to lead UKIP.
People in my family, where I live in Hackney, have been shouted at in the street and told: ‘What are you still doing here? We voted for Brexit.’ Brexit has become a euphemism for anti-immigrant feeling. “I’ve got friends on the South Coast, which is not ‘left-behind Britain’, and yet people are shouting at them on the bus: ‘Why are you still here?’”
Says comrade Diane Abbott in the I’ today.
..the shadow Home Secretary, argued that the party should “hold its nerve” and appealed to its huge membership to confront “toxic” arguments over immigration. “It’s as if the Brexit vote has given people permission to say they things didn’t feel able to say before,” she said in an interview with i.
Ms Abbott’s appointment by Jeremy Corbyn, and her decision to take personal control of immigration policy, has dismayed some Labour MPs who fear the party’s failure to take a tougher stance on the issue will make it vulnerable to Ukip. But she has no truck with that argument, insisting: “I don’t think there’s any way forward for the Labour Party electorally from sounding Ukip-lite. “If you are attracted by Ukip arguments, you are going to vote Ukip. And in areas where they are not so upset about migration they are going to be baffled about what we are actually doing.”
The MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington added: “What some of my colleagues don’t seem to bear in mind is there are
people out there who are genuinely frightened by the turn this debate has taken.” Ms Abbott blamed anti-migration feeling in many Labour-loyal areas which voted for Brexit on disaffection in post-industrial Britain and a “cry of loss for a world which isn’t coming back”. She accused New Labour of taking those areas for granted on the mistaken assumption that there was nowhere else for its natural supporters to go. Ms Abbott argued Labour’s 500,000-plus membership should take the initiative in campaigning on the continuing economic boost from migration.
It was a tough task “in the era of Farage and Le Pen and Trump” but was the right thing for the party to do, she said. “If you were a Corbynista you would feel very let down if we said anything else. “We’ve now got the biggest social democratic party in western Europe, and we have to respond to it almost conversation by conversation, but at the same time being seen to address the real concerns people have about the NHS, job security and so on “I understand how high feelings run, but I just think we have to beware of a downward spiral in the debate.”
The Independent reports,
Some Labour backbenchers are furious with Diane Abbott, the Shadow Home Secretary, accusing her of trying to stamp on any debate about immigration which could see Labour trying to “outdo Ukip”.
Crisis-Riven Momentum Shifts to National Populism: “This our Brexit”, “Taking back control is not the preserve of the right.”
Momentum to Narrative Farage and Brexit Back Under Control.
Momentum is undergoing a major crisis, amidst factional fighting and personal antagonisms.
This git so bad earlier this month that it appeared in the mainstream media (How Momentum entered the crisis zone . Momentum was the engine of Jeremy Corbyn’s victory. Now a civil war is tearing it apart. New Statesman)
Some of the exchanges are far worse than have been made public to a wider audience.
The latest has been an interminable dispute about its national structures.
It began with this, “MxV, an innovative digital democracy platform to enable Momentum members to shape the organisation’s purpose, ethics and structures.”
An on-line consultation resulted, we hear, in more suggestions for how the group should be run than a debate on how many angels can dance on the head of pin (see: Democracy denied: Momentum’s online democracy platform.)
Or, the classic Left Unity conference debate on such issues.
Now Momentum is set to collapse into further in-fighting as the pro-Brexit – that is Lexit – Populists take the initiative.
We observe that this ‘initiative’ has not been discussed with the Momentum membership at all.
‘Taking back control is not the preserve of the right.
Momentum has announced it is to host a series of nationwide events and debates to coincide with Government’s triggering of Article 50 in 2017.
Alongside The World Transformed the organisation – set up in the wake of Jeremy Corbyn’s victory as Labour leader – will launch a series of political and cultural events in local communities across the country.
The events will run under the name ‘Take Back Control’ – the political slogan used by the Leave campaign during the referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU.
Emma Rees, one of Momentum’s national organisers, told The Independent: “After the success of The World Transformed in Liverpool, ‘Take Back Control’ is a series of exciting events that will bring together leave and remain voters to debate the terms of Brexit, the future of Britain and give a platform to voices too often left out of political conversations.”
Lotte Boumelha, a Take Back Control organiser, *added: “Theresa May claims ‘Brexit means Brexit’. But this empty phrase has been used to hide the fact that the government is in chaos. Many people, both leave and remain voters, have felt dis-empowered since the referendum and shut out of the debate.
“Take Back Control will be about reclaiming the narrative and opening up the negotiations. This is our Brexit. We should get to decide what it means and what it will look like. And while Theresa May has only a majority of 14 MPs – she will have to listen to us.”
In March, to coincide with the Government’s anticipated triggering of the exit process from the EU, The World Transformed will work with local Momentum groups, constituency Labour parties, and trade union branches to “bring together leave and remain voters, open up the Brexit negotiations and discuss how we can take back control from economic elites and establishment politicians.
How on earth these meetings are going to ‘take control’ of any negotiations, elites and politicians, is as clear as mud.
Anybody, anybody, who talks about “reclaiming the narrative” with Farage on the loose amid the Carnival or Reaction, is a kenspeckle fool.
What are they going to do: story-tell it all to sleep?
The New Statesman comments,
While The World Transformed is “definitely” part of Momentum, according to Todd, its exact relationship remains under discussion, as does its relationship to the wider Labour party.
To repeat, nobody seems to know how the hare-brained initiative was decided on (certainly not by Momentum membership, or any accountable body, then by whom?), who controls it, and, as for its consequences…..
Anna Chen says,
It is not often that we publish news on Ipswich Tory Party.
MP Ben Gummer spends his time these days in a happy daze:
It is an exciting time to be in our town, and a privilege for me to serve this glorious constituency as it grasps a better future with both hands.
But all is not well in the Ipswich Conservative Association..
Leading activist, former Tory council candidate, and Brexit supporter, Kevin Algar, the Terror of Saint Jude’s, is now backing Marine Le Pen for French President.
He comments on Facebook today, “She will win, the EU will collapse and the people of Europe shall be free.”
According to well-established rumour Kev, as his friends don’t call him, plans to hold a Suffolk victory party for the Front National.
This was his last celebration, (via East Anglia’s Premier Political Blog) ” Congratulations to US President elect Donald Trump.”