Swansea needs councillors who vote against cuts! No to austerity - vote Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC).

Don’t waste the opportunity to send a clear ‘no more cuts’ message by voting for Ronnie Job, TUSC: the only no-cuts, socialist candidate in Swansea West in the 2015 General Election!

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Never mind Blairite, Labour leadership contenders sound positively Thatcherite!

So Newsnight's going to screen a Labour leadership contenders' debate? I don't know why they bother - they all seem to be saying the same things.

On one news programme last week we had reports of Burnham saying he didn't want to be seen as the candidate of the unions or the Left (as if!) and that he thinks we should be tougher on benefits, Liz Kendall saying she wants to back the white working class young (what about the non-white working class?) and Yvette Cooper calling for tougher action on immigration. Never mind a field of Blairites, at times they sound positively Thatcherite!

Despite the determination of all contenders for the Labour leadership to move the Party even further to the right (incredibly they all blame Miliband's defeat on him being too left wing!) the affiliated unions will no doubt find some reason to back one of this ragbag as the 'unions' choice'; it looks like being Burnham at the moment despite his desperation to distance himself from that label.

If newspaper reports are right then Unite and Unison between them gave upwards of £20 million to the Labour Party under Miliband, who was himself the 'unions' choice' at the time. What did we get for our members' money? Under Miliband's leadership, Labour refused to support and in a number of cases condemned, striking trade unionists doing what Labour refused to do - fighting back against Government cuts.

Worse still, where Labour is in power - in the Welsh Government and in councils across the country - they've been just as quick to make cuts as the Tories. £20 million to support a party whose councillors make thousands of our members redundant, outsource jobs and services and drive down our members' conditions?

And let's not forget the Labour Leader reporting Unite, his party's biggest financial backer, to the police on completely spurious charges. Even though  all the accusations against Unite in Falkirk were found to be groundless, they still provided a pretext for Inneos to victimise a Unite steward and for the Labour Party to bar an elected candidate from standing in Falkirk and then initiate the Collins Review, to neuter union influence in the Party.

And yet Labour 'lefts' and the Morning Star, are getting excited about Labour MPs 'defending the union link' but when you read the detail it's a signal of the weakness of support for union values in the parliamentary party - they could only find 26 Labour MPs who were willing to defend the trade union link, even in its extremely watered down version post-Collins. When I was a member of the Labour Party if you applied to join without providing details of what union you were a member of, your application would be referred back until you could provide a good reason as to why you were not a trade unionist. Now I seems that only a tiny minority of Labour MPs think there is a role for unions at all in the Party (apart from maybe bankrolling their personal careers).

To suggest that trade unionists should join, vote for and fund the Labour Party given all the above smacks of Stockholm Syndrome. The affiliated unions need to break with Labour now - not a penny more of our members cash to the red Tories! Instead found a real workers' party that can build on the foundations laid down by TUSC.

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