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A Red Letter Day for Baroness Claire Regina Fox as she takes her House of Lords Seat.

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Claire Fox: This Climate Science Denying Former Revolutionary Communist Might Win in the European Election | DeSmog UK

 

“And, with glorious triumph, they

Rode through England proud and gay,

Drunk as with intoxication

Of the Wine of desolation”

The Mask of Anarchy. Shelly.

Today, “In the Lords (12:00), there’s another crowd at the arrivals desk, with former Brexit Party MEP Claire Fox due to take her seat as Baroness Fox of Buckley,”

The Conservative Woman site writes today,

Keep campaigning in the Lords, Claire

ALTHOUGH Claire Fox is no longer a mouthpiece for the Revolutionary Communist Party, she is still far from being a social conservative. Nonetheless, throughout the political upheavals of the past few years, she has been on the side of the angels when battling for Brexit, fighting for free speech and doughtily defending civil liberties.

Last Night John McDonnell (MP), Ann Pettifor (Economist), Adam Ramsay, (Open Democracy), Amelia Womack, (Deputy Leader of the Green Party) and Ana Oppenheim, (Another Europe and Momentum NCG) spoke at a Webinar for Fight for the Future, organised by Another Europe is Possible.

This is the biggest attempt to deregulate the economy in British history, alongside a vicious anti-migrant policy. Boris Johnson and his allies were always clear that this is what they wanted from Brexit. Now, it is happening.

Unless we stand up and fight back, we could lose everything.

All the speakers had important  points to make about the effects of Brexit, attacks on human rights, consumer standards, and the future of the movement for new Green politics to respond to the ecological crisis.

A striking contrubution came when Adam Ramsay. He outlined the way  Brexit opened up the UK to largely US run multinationals and finance. Beginning with inroads into the NHS, US-style deregulation, the lowering of consumer standards to fit the needs of American agribusiness, and free-reign asset-stripping the Open Democracy Site Editor, he suggested that Britain will become an annexe of the US, without power to affect decisions made that will affect us. That is, Ramsay has written)  “an outhouse for US business, a sort of colder, paler version of Puerto Rico.” ( Britain after Brexit: welcome to the vulture restaurant.)

The Open Democracy speaker also talked of the funding that drove the Brexit Campaign, the ‘dark money’ that Peter Geoghegan put at the centre of the campaign for the Brexit project of this “anglosphere” (Democracy for Sale. 2020). Ramsay was the stimulus and collaborator for Geogenham’s investigation into the DUP’s pro-Brexit intervention in the 2016 Referendum, “The sheer scale of the party’s spending (£250,000) also begged the question of where the money came from.” (Page 82).

From this flow of cash, the ‘digital mercenaries” of Brexit,  the gyrkins of the ‘anglosphere’, the ruddy-faced English nationalists, the Tory Toffs of the European Research Group, we come to the area where ‘left’ met right, the Full Brexit.

 

This was an initiative which brought together the ‘Spiked’ network (whose immediate predecessor was Living Marxism, with a background in the Revolutionary Communist Party,- please ask for more details!) members of the British Communist Party, Lexit leftists…

Bob From Brockley:

The Full Brexit”, an avowedly left-wing pressure group launched in the summer of 2018 to reframe the Brexit narrative as one about “democracy” rather than just bashing immigrants. Alongside a smattering of Blue Labour social conservatives and Lexit Marxists, a good half of its 20 founding signatories are RCP network members. Academic Chris Bickerton has been a Spiked contributor since 2005, when he was a PhD student at St John’s College, Oxford. Philip Cunliffe, Furedi’s colleague at the University of Kent, is another long term Spiked activist. Pauline Hadaway, another academic, is a veteran of the Living Marxism days. James Heartfield was a paid RCP organiser. Lee Jones seems to have been recruited at Oxford around the same time as Bickerton. Tara McCormack is an RCP veteran, as is Suke WoltonBruno Waterfield write for Living Marxism.

Other signatories aren’t part of the network but have been promoted by Spiked: Paul Embery and Thomas Fazi for example (Fazi is also connected to the 5 Star Movement and recently retweeted an antisemitic tweet from someone with “Nazbol” in his user name). Many are also involved in Briefings for Brexit, which has several RCP veterans on its advisory committee, and some involved with Civitas. This is a peculiar form of left-right crossover politics

Claire Fox: Brexit & Left. (Brexit Party MEP Candidate) I So What You're Saying Is - YouTube

 

Then,

“The RCP then played a key role in the creation of the Brexit Party, again providing “left” cover for a deeply right-wing project.”

Today one raptor in ermine takes her fight for “democracy” and seat in the House of Lords, Baroness Claire Regina Fox.

Spiked it could be noted is also a beneficiary of US right-wing largesse.

The ennoblement has aroused opposition centring on this part of her political past:

More: John Rogan, The Brexit Party, Claire Fox and Warrington-an overview.

 

Her ladyship has taken of the name of the place where she grew up, Buckley.

The news has not gone well in the Welsh town.

In this week’s Private Eye we learn that her Ladyship cannot be stopped from using this name.

We hope the Baroness receives a rousing welcome.

Update:

 

 

Keir Starmer: Poll Boost for 100 Days of Leadership.

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Image

Starmer is doing better in the polls than his predecessors.

Net scores for leaders at around 100 days: Ed Miliband -21 Jeremy Corbyn -32 Keir Starmer +24 First impressions matter in politics, and Starmer has made a good one. (Chris Curtis).

Today sees many accounts of Keir Starmer’s first 100 Days as Labour Leader.

On Labour List Sienna Rogers writes (100 Days of Starmer) that,

The new leader has adopted a softly, softly approach to opposing the government and a ruthless one for internal party politics.

He has forged a slim but reliable majority on Labour’s national executive committee, replaced Jennie Formby with a general secretary who is widely considered to be on the party’s right, and sacked his Corbynite leadership opponent from the shadow cabinet. The Labour frontbench has been thoroughly overhauled, both in terms of who’s on it and the tone that they take in interviews. The leadership has slowly ramped up criticism of the Tories over Covid-19, but caution is still the watchword for media engagement.

She continues,

The core objective of Starmer’s team appears to be ‘detoxifying’ the Labour brand. If we’re assessing these 100 days on that basis, the leader’s brilliant personal approval ratings certainly give cause for optimism – but the party has some catching up to do, still lagging behind the Conservatives in voting intention despite their calamitous response to the crisis.

Faced with the divisions on the Labour Left, with a substantial fringe unable to accept Starmer’s legitimacy, it looks probable that the Labour leader will consolidate support on the National Executive Committee after the forthcoming internal party elections.

Toby Helm in the Observer yesterday (100 days on, Keir Starmer’s quiet revolution takes hold) accurately reflects the reactions on the wider left  to Starmer’s “ruthless” actions inside the Party..

Laura Parker, who has backed the internationalist Another Europe is Possible campaign, is cited,

.”….there has been no mass resignation from the membership, says Laura Parker, the former national coordinator of Momentum, because Starmer stood on a leftwing programme which he has stood by.”

She asks, 

Why would people leave when the centre of gravity has shifted? It may not have shifted as far to the left as some people want. But it is an anti-austerity, pro-common ownership party. It is a pro-peace party, and it is not a ‘relaxed about the filthy rich’ party – far from it,” said Parker.

She believes it is probably too early to judge Starmer, as Covid-19 has drowned out everything else and given the new Labour leader no real chance to show his true policy colours. But she sees definite signs that the entire movement wants to come together under him if it can.

“The vast majority of people do want to turn a page,” she said. “That does not mean the left is about to abandon all its principles, but there is an appetite for building more harmonious relationships.”

Indeed. We could do without the contrived attacks on Starmer’s “Blairism”and the claims of a wave of activists leaving, instead of a few individuals and a a hostile mood amongst those who placed high hopes in Corbyn.

But there is room for the kind of strategic questioning offered by Peter Kenyon in the left journal Chartist,

Peter Kenyon looks forward to a dismal future for Britain and its children post-Brexit

Labour remainers are engaged in one last bid to persuade Labour Party leader Keir Starmer to speak out about Brexit. It is a difficult ask. The new leadership wants the Tories to own the issue. But how to fix that in the minds of voters?

…..

Starmer needs to make a statement, without necessarily calling for an extension, about the consequences of Johnson’s plate-spinning. Lastly, now is the time to remind voters that there is no sector of the economy that will benefit from maximum divergence except the disaster capitalists represented by the current Cabinet.

In framing a starker set of messages about the future, they will need to be targeted at those newly-elected Tory MPs from so-called ‘red wall’ seats. Make them squirm. Unbelievably, they won their seats with promises of hope. What hope can there be for their constituents and their children when their local manufacturing base is having its heart ripped out by the Tories? Divergence from the EU means just-in-time supply chains will be wrecked with delays at ports, and the risk of tariffs. This is just one of the consequences of Johnson’s ‘fuck business’ policy. Agriculture is similarly at risk.

On the more radical left (also from the internationalist Another Europe is Possible anti-Brexit campaign) Michael Chessum also appears in the Observer Toby Helm article.

He says, 

For now, though, the party, like the country, is getting to know Starmer. Michael Chessum, a former member of Momentum’s steering group, says the sacking of Long-Bailey and appointment of Evans have split the left and caused irritation.

“But,” he said, “most members are probably willing to tolerate this, as long as the new leadership honours its promise to maintain Corbyn’s radical policy platform. The question is whether Starmer can really do this while at the same time completely changing Labour’s personnel and tone.”

Michael delicately refers to the self-righteous blasts that followed Long-Bailey’s dismissal,  a reaction that has only served to isolate the professional anti-Starmer current further.

This is how some of them reacted:

Today they are reduced to this:

Susan Press, a long-standing activist on the left of Labour, reflects a more widely shared take.

The anti-Starmer left, many of them from groups  inside and outside the Labour Party favourable to Brexit and whose campaigning against the EU helped bring Boris Johnson to power,  have struggled to find more than a role.

They are reduced to this kind of snipping:

Today Labour supporters and activists are beginning to digest this in full.

Conner Ibbetson writes,

Starmer vs Corbyn: how does Labour’s new leader stack up?

Since taking office as leader of the Labour party, Sir Keir Starmer has been presented with a tough set of challenges; unite the party following a crushing general election defeat, tackle the issue of antisemitism, and win back Labour’s key voters. Add to that list the COVID-19 pandemic and a resulting surge in support for the Government, and you’ve got a truly monumental task ahead of you – so what do Labour voters and the general public make of him 100 days in, and how does he stack up against his predecessor?

This is a crucial point:

Distancing himself from Corbyn could prove a winning strategy for the new Labour leader. When compared to Corbyn, Starmer is seen as universally more appealing to both Labour voters and general voters, by both the general public and Labour voters themselves. Overall, 60% of the public think Starmer best appeals to the general voter, compared to 56% who think he appeals to Labour voters more than his predecessor.

Among Labour voters, 73% back Starmer as most appealing to the general voter, while only 7% still hang on and say Jeremy Corbyn had a better appeal.

When it comes to who Labour voters think best appeals to the party, the majority still side with Starmer (65%) however 14% of Labour voters still opt for Corbyn.

Looking at younger adults under the age of 25, while a sizeable portion back Starmer in both cases, the group is split (40% and 39%) on which leader they see as most appealing to general voters and labour voters respectively.

Ibbetson concludes by saying that voters consider that Starmer has moved the party to the right, “a third (35%) of the general public thinking Starmer has already moved the Labour Party more towards the political right, with only 3% saying he has shifted the party towards the left. Approaching a fifth (19%) say the Labour Party has remained in the same place for now.

This will doubtless crop up frequently, “Among Labour voters, two fifths (40%) say Keir Starmer has shifted the party towards to the right, with 18% saying the party has stayed the same under his leadership.”

A poll is not a political analysis, and one would hesitate to call all of Corbyn’s policies, or rather his lack of clear ones on issues like Universal Credit or foreign policy, the gold standard of left wing politics. 

 

Written by Andrew Coates

July 13, 2020 at 4:31 pm

Morning Star, “recycled fragments of the ultra left now line up with the main vehicles of the Labour right wing and much of the liberal and neoliberal media.”

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Image result for ultra leftism in britain Betty reid

Be Alert: Keep a Copy of this Handbook Close at all Times!

The leadership contest has revealed new contours in Labour’s ideological topography. Nick Wright.

 

(5 Retweets).

The former Straight left stalwart writes in the Morning Star, independent of the Communist Party of Britain and owned by the Co-op.

This article may be seen as a response to the Guardian column, The Labour leadership contest has exposed new factions in the party ( ).

Sharper than a serpent’s tooth was this section,

 The orthodox left still basically wants to implement the Communist party’s 1951 plan, The British Road to Socialism, with its vision of socialism being implemented in one country by a strong, centralised national government. They lean heavily towards a pro-Brexit position, while tending to interpret support for Brexit among working-class voters as incipient class consciousness rather than tabloid-inspired xenophobia.

Followed by,

The radical left is still a very new, fragile and inexperienced tendency that has a long way to go before emerging as a mature political formation. It brings together the more libertarian strands of the hard left, the more radical strands of the soft left, and a new generation of activists from outside the traditions of the Labour party.

Wright makes a clarion call for the whole of the left to support Long-Bailey, and follow the doughty progressive patriot for better reasons than the (official) left who back her, “mainly out of sheer loyalty to her mentor, John McDonnell, that most of the radical left have supported her.”

He aims to dampen down this deviation:  “Privately, many on the radical left agree with former MP Alan Simpson that the dogmatic and authoritarian tendencies of the orthodox left smothered the creative and democratic potential of Corbynism, contributing to its eventual downfall.

The Communist Party of Britain sage writes of Labour’s General Election Campaign.

The disparate elements that Corbyn’s election united has ended and the wide legitimacy that Labour’s radical programme commanded is now challenged by people who attribute the election defeat to “socialist policies” which must be abandoned.

With the help of ace-reporters Wright discovers that Labour was, at one point, on the brink of victory,

…. a wave of popular participation, an effective social media operation, skilled targeting of swing seats and a bold manifesto (along with the divisions in the Tory ranks and a weakened Liberal Democrat Party) produced a surge in support that eroded a 20-point Tory lead and took Corbyn within a few thousand votes of No 10.

We may not have noticed that, but he did!

The fault lay in a failure to respect the decision to respect the Brexit vote, something which Wight and his comrades tirelessly campaigned for.

Instead of becoming a springboard for a further assault on a divided ruling class — this itself apparent in a highly conflicted Tory Party in government — this hopeful prospect was dissipated as Labour’s activists and mass base were sidelined by a parliamentary party intent on subverting the clear decision to respect the referendum result.

Worse was to come,

Labour (was)  corralled into an increasingly Get Brexit Undone policy, the way was open for Labour’s manifesto to be driven to the margins of public discussion.

The People’s Vote campaign, a middle class mass movement, had sown confusion in Labour ranks.

The success of the Remain camp in conflating “internationalism” with a kind of shared European privilege to travel, study and work freely threatens to undermine the deeper internationalism that found an expression in the mass movement against neoliberal trade deals, in the Stop the War movement, the anti-racist and solidarity action with refugees and migrant workers and the Palestine solidarity movement.

The kind of internationalism that has stood by while Assad, Russia and Iran,  attack Idid in Syria, in short.

Remain, unlike Boris Johnson and the ERG, had a “neoliberal project.”

Worse the pro-EU side has  echoes of fascism, foretold in  ” manifesto of Oswald Mosley’s postwar racist revival”.

He cites Gilbert (above), without mentioning (surely an oversight),  the passage of the British Road to Socialism,

It is to Jeremy Gilbert, professor of cultural and political theory at the University of East London, that we owe the insight that the leadership contest has revealed new contours in Labour’s ideological topography and that the only way for Labour to win is to ditch “Labourism.”

Writing about Labour’s so-called “soft left,” he writes: “Despite the failures of both Kinnock and Miliband, their default assumption remains that progressive government can be achieved by selling moderate social democracy to the electorate, led by a guy in a smart suit.”

Worse is to come….

It is to this inspiring standard that the recycled fragments of the ultra left now line up with the main vehicles of the Labour right wing and much of the liberal and neoliberal media.

The Morning Star writer has a warning to them:

While it might suit some to reduce much of politics to the clash of cultures, no-one should underestimate the political potency of questions of nationhood, patriotism and identity.

As in progressive patriotism.

Cde Wright ends with a stirring call for unity behind the banner of the “Orthodox Left”-  including these “recycled fragments”, supporters of a neoliberal project, who admire something with the odour of Oswald Mosley “?

A dog-eared copy of Betty Reid’s, ‘Ultra Leftism in Britain’, (1969. CPGB) would surely show the dangers of the “ultra left” in their true light.