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Yiksheemash View Drop Down
Kevin Kilbane
Kevin Kilbane

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Yiksheemash Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Aug 2020 at 3:20pm
Christ you post some absolute sh*te. LOL 

I think we all need to do a whip around to get the Covid Sister's a prostitute and preferably the same one due to reduce exposure to Covid-19. The two of ye are relentless in the amount of sh*te ye post. 
In my country we fak, my wife she isa dead
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Het-field View Drop Down
Jack Charlton
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Het-field Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Aug 2020 at 3:38pm
But issues like housing and so-called "regressive taxation" would be akin to Repeal the 8th and Equal Marriage, in terms of the type of protest they engender. In terms of housing, its a rights issue. I'm less inclined to buy into protest about regressive taxes on a rights basis, as its inherently populist, and designed to shrink the tax base, without a reasonable and sustainable alternative. There is political capital to be made on that, and inherent in that is ideology. But once you get beyond those hot button issues, the vast majority of issues are too esoteric to be influenced by protest, and if there is protest about them, it will be too small to be noticeable, and as a result make any lasting impact. Things like planning regulations, personal taxation, local government etc just don't have the same pull. And then there will be rights issues, where the wider population won't be on the same page, as people who wish to protest the issues. 

And using the NRA as an example, when you wield sufficient political power, protest, even highly legitimate protest, can be drowned out. And also, farmers, using one of your examples, have a very organised lobby, and have had people elected to high office, and in Ireland have regularly been members of the Oireachtas, within Government parties, and have also enjoyed election to council seats up and down the country. Farmers protest, but they are very engaged in electoral and representative politics. Publicans have a loud voice, but they also have a long history with membership of the elected classes. The most powerful lobby groups, who are open to direct action, all have their fingers in the pie of elected governance. . And it is worth remembering that the genesis of the UK Labour Party was about representing the interests of the working class. And inbuilt in the UK Labour Party is a very tight affiliation with the Unions. This gave a natural home for a lot of people, who would otherwise be disenfranchised by the existing choice, and broke a potential hegemony with Tories and Liberals, and in fact, an unwavering home, and a visceral hatred of its opponent. It could be argued that the Labour Party is one of the best examples of how the power of direct action, and representative action can change a lot.

There is a narrative out there, that is shared amongst the left, that they are achieving things by stealth, but the truth is, centrism, is catching up with it, and remains the electoral face of what progressive politics needs to be, in order to hold legislative power. And centrist goals are often aligned with high line goals of the left.  Bernie is a prime example of a progressive European politician, and would have good success, in this part of the world. The problem is that he is socialism 101 in the US, at an elected level, and there is a long way to go there. In the EU he is a social democrat who believes in things like free healthcare and free education, which is a generally accepted principle in most parts of Europe. But in Europe, we have a different style of left. Ireland is a good example, where our left is a mix of populist socialism and rhetoric. In Ireland there is a "everything should be free and state based and Bono and the millionaires pay for it" mentality, which borderlines on demagogic. In Greece, in 2015 they elected a leftist Government, which failed, as it played roulette with the EU. Simply put, the left in Europe doesn't help itself in the slightest, and in some cases is a parody of itself. Even Corbyn failed various tests of leadership during his tenure with Labour, the Brexit Referendum and the Skripal affair being examples. And the fact that a lot of the European have found a way to defend the failing regime in Venezuela indicates their viewpoint, and why they struggle to be taken seriously at an ideological level. In truth, the way the left in the US and Europe operate are really not comparable, because in the US even a base level of sensible and necessary social programs, crucial for social justice to prevail, don't exist. Until that equilibrium is reached, the US will always struggle with its understanding of where something isn't a privilege, but a right. And on the other hand, Europe has hit a very good level of social services, but now there is a populist narrative added to the politics that purports to defend it, which takes the left, further left, and into a significantly more statist space which will repel a lot of voters.

But in a nutshell, it comes down to whether you want to be a movement of protest or power. And in reality, the most powerful groups are both. They defend their interests without fear or compunction, but they know they have legislative and local power on their side because they make sure to be involved in it. 


Edited by Het-field - 12 Aug 2020 at 3:39pm
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Jack Charlton
Jack Charlton

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sid waddell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Aug 2020 at 3:52pm
Originally posted by Yiksheemash Yiksheemash wrote:

Christ you post some absolute sh*te. LOL 

I think we all need to do a whip around to get the Covid Sister's a prostitute and preferably the same one due to reduce exposure to Covid-19. The two of ye are relentless in the amount of sh*te ye post. 
Unfortunately there's no such a thing as a whip round to get somebody a brain, as you require.
"ONE-NIL!" - David Coleman, George Hamilton - "Finding The Words - The Art of Commentary"

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sid waddell View Drop Down
Jack Charlton
Jack Charlton

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sid waddell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Aug 2020 at 5:04pm
Originally posted by Het-field Het-field wrote:

But issues like housing and so-called "regressive taxation" would be akin to Repeal the 8th and Equal Marriage, in terms of the type of protest they engender. In terms of housing, its a rights issue. I'm less inclined to buy into protest about regressive taxes on a rights basis, as its inherently populist, and designed to shrink the tax base, without a reasonable and sustainable alternative. There is political capital to be made on that, and inherent in that is ideology. But once you get beyond those hot button issues, the vast majority of issues are too esoteric to be influenced by protest, and if there is protest about them, it will be too small to be noticeable, and as a result make any lasting impact. Things like planning regulations, personal taxation, local government etc just don't have the same pull. And then there will be rights issues, where the wider population won't be on the same page, as people who wish to protest the issues. 

And using the NRA as an example, when you wield sufficient political power, protest, even highly legitimate protest, can be drowned out. And also, farmers, using one of your examples, have a very organised lobby, and have had people elected to high office, and in Ireland have regularly been members of the Oireachtas, within Government parties, and have also enjoyed election to council seats up and down the country. Farmers protest, but they are very engaged in electoral and representative politics. Publicans have a loud voice, but they also have a long history with membership of the elected classes. The most powerful lobby groups, who are open to direct action, all have their fingers in the pie of elected governance. . And it is worth remembering that the genesis of the UK Labour Party was about representing the interests of the working class. And inbuilt in the UK Labour Party is a very tight affiliation with the Unions. This gave a natural home for a lot of people, who would otherwise be disenfranchised by the existing choice, and broke a potential hegemony with Tories and Liberals, and in fact, an unwavering home, and a visceral hatred of its opponent. It could be argued that the Labour Party is one of the best examples of how the power of direct action, and representative action can change a lot.

There is a narrative out there, that is shared amongst the left, that they are achieving things by stealth, but the truth is, centrism, is catching up with it, and remains the electoral face of what progressive politics needs to be, in order to hold legislative power. And centrist goals are often aligned with high line goals of the left.  Bernie is a prime example of a progressive European politician, and would have good success, in this part of the world. The problem is that he is socialism 101 in the US, at an elected level, and there is a long way to go there. In the EU he is a social democrat who believes in things like free healthcare and free education, which is a generally accepted principle in most parts of Europe. But in Europe, we have a different style of left. Ireland is a good example, where our left is a mix of populist socialism and rhetoric. In Ireland there is a "everything should be free and state based and Bono and the millionaires pay for it" mentality, which borderlines on demagogic. In Greece, in 2015 they elected a leftist Government, which failed, as it played roulette with the EU. Simply put, the left in Europe doesn't help itself in the slightest, and in some cases is a parody of itself. Even Corbyn failed various tests of leadership during his tenure with Labour, the Brexit Referendum and the Skripal affair being examples. And the fact that a lot of the European have found a way to defend the failing regime in Venezuela indicates their viewpoint, and why they struggle to be taken seriously at an ideological level. In truth, the way the left in the US and Europe operate are really not comparable, because in the US even a base level of sensible and necessary social programs, crucial for social justice to prevail, don't exist. Until that equilibrium is reached, the US will always struggle with its understanding of where something isn't a privilege, but a right. And on the other hand, Europe has hit a very good level of social services, but now there is a populist narrative added to the politics that purports to defend it, which takes the left, further left, and into a significantly more statist space which will repel a lot of voters.

But in a nutshell, it comes down to whether you want to be a movement of protest or power. And in reality, the most powerful groups are both. They defend their interests without fear or compunction, but they know they have legislative and local power on their side because they make sure to be involved in it. 
But I've never said to neglect electoral politics, which it seems to me you sort of imply I did. 

The broad left needs both civil society and electoral politics. It needs civil society to influence electoral politics. 

Because the ideas space is the key space. The broad right has tended to dominate the ideas space through its industrial bullsh*t machine of the media, think tanks etc. 

The broad left doesn't have that, at least currently, because to cultivate media and think tanks requires money, and the broad left does not have many wealthy donors, because wealthy donors tend to support politics which will maximise their monetary wealth. 

So to win the ideas space, it has to have civil society, grass roots action. It has to cultivate people who can articulately verbalise ideas and it has to do it quickly. 

Electorally, broad left political parties need to be mass movements. Corbyn saw that. AOC sees it. 

Economically, US, UK and for that matter Irish centrism has very little to offer ordinary people because it fundamentally believes in the discredited and simply wrong ideology of an infallible free market. It does not believe in properly tackling wealth inequality. It sees grotesque wealth inequality as the natural order of things. It does not believe in the sort of long term investment which is necessary to sustain both societies and economies. Look at the reaction the Green New Deal in the US and Labour's Green Industrial Revolution. These are vital ideas. It does not believe in tackling the myriad of ways rich people have to game the system. It doesn't really believe in punishing corruption or white collar crime, as we'll likely see if Biden becomes president.

In Greece, the problems were not caused by Syriza. They were caused by the neo-liberal governments of the previous two decades which cooked the books so they could get into the Euro because it was a prestige project for them. Syriza capitulated in 2015 because a metaphorical gun was put to their head by the EU. This is the problem now for certain EU countries (Britain was not one). Can't live with the EU, can't live without them, yet the centralised, federalised fiscal regime to match the monetary union - the United States of Europe that is required - cannot happen because of national politics.

Corbyn was very far from perfect. As an actual national retail politician he was poor. By all means criticise him on many things, his reaction to the Skripal poisoning included. But he was vilified totally unfairly on so much both from within and without. My points about his leadership of Labour from my last post weren't really addressed by you and still stand.

What he was absolutely right about is that parties like Labour - and the Democrats in the US - need to be mass movements. And they need to move in the progressive direction. And they need to move the centre to the left. On social issues, in so called "western countries", well at least until the recent racist backlash, the left and civil society left has been utterly successful in dragging the centre leftwards. On everything. 

This needs to happen economically too. 

You can't have a movement of power which achieves anything of value, without protest, without civil society campaigning, to occupy the ideas space. You have to change the language through which people think. Language is like the air we breath. None of us can escape it. It's how people form opinions. Currently, the language people speak is a right-wing language. "Law and order", "welfare cheats", "spongers", "Israel has a right to exist", "tax and spend", "how do we pay for this?", "healthcare choice", "snowflakes" etc. These are all vacuous canards and dead ends for humanity. 
"ONE-NIL!" - David Coleman, George Hamilton - "Finding The Words - The Art of Commentary"

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Jack Charlton
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Het-field Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Aug 2020 at 6:28pm
And this raises a question as to what shade of the left has brought politics leftwards. To my point, its diverse in Europe, and the likes of the Irish Labour Party, the Irish Green Party are two of the most progressive forces in domestic affairs. But now they are the butt of invective from the new left in Ireland, who deem them to be "establishment" parties, which is a dog-whistle for right wing, and ignores the various aspects of social progress which was achieved under their watch, particularly Labour. And this is why the mass movement amongst the left is harder to see happen when the old adage about "the split" keeps appearing as a truth. In Ireland there is a split amongst the left, who conversely require each other's seats for survival, and they have to have a rhetoric with a different shade of leftism in order to be relevant. And this is why we now have an opposition stuffed with people whose goal is to argue that they can provide huge increases in social expenditure and expansion of social programs, while simultaneously reducing the tax base, and avoiding, at all costs, on an ideological level, so called regressive taxes. Naturally, the pragmatic left in the likes of Labour are wary of that, the likes of the Shinners see that as a vote getter, and the rest genuinely believe it. And what is interesting about some of the recent narrative in Irish politics is the absolutely unfounded allegations that are being made against state actors that it somehow riddled with classism. That is just populist guff, under the cloak of representation, and a co-opted monopoly on the politics of "caring".

Realistically, the mass movement is unlikely to happen, simply because you won't get agreement between the centre-left, the left, the Shinners, and the Trots, and they will also be undercutting each other too, for relevance. We have now seen it in the UK with Labour. The moment Corbyn went, so did support for Labour from some quarters. Rather than gritting teeth, there is now an operative to pick apart anything Keir Starmer says or doesn't say. in fact, many of the things that are being said about Kamala Harris about her time as a prosecutor, as are being said about Keir Starmer from his time as DPP. But it is a return to form for people who view Labour as  "Blairite", and without Corbyn they want nothing to do with it. I mentioned the same style of faction in the US, its Bernie or bust. And I will say for both politicians, I am certain they don't want it that way. They want nothing more than to see the Tories or the Republicans soundly defeated and want them out and as quickly as possible. But that cant be said for all their supporters. Some of those supporters  will spend their time focussing on Starmer as opposed to Johnson, and Biden instead of Trump, and when the next election comes will sit at home in self-righteousness or vote for third parties.

The factionalism within the left, and the different shades of left wing politics makes a mass movement almost impossible to achieve, if the binding zeal is its politics. It is as interested in defeating the enemy within, as it is in defeating the external enemy, and when that occurs, it hands the levers of legislative power to its external enemy, and at that point all the protest marches and demonstrations won't make any difference in real time to people.  And that doesn't even mention the people who are co-opting left wing values for populist purposes, and will drop them like a hot snot if a whiff of power comes along

And my point about parties like Syriza, remains sound. It was a very strong example of left wing populism. And my point is not about what got Greece to where it was (And there is a proper debate to be had about whether they were ever Neo-liberal governments at play there), but how it reacted, when it needed to deal decisively with a major budgetary issue, and in light of the the actions of other EU countries who had been in that situation. That was Syriza's role. It actually took the populist line about the EU, which other countries in dire straits didn't, and decided that saying "FU" to the EU was the way to go, after negotiating a deal. Under the cloak of democracy it put the vote to the people, while campaigning against it, and using populist nationalist and anti-EU sentiment to get the result it wanted. Of course they could throw off the shackles of responsibility either way, by pointing fingers at the people, who either embraced the EU approach or rejected it, and suffered the consequences. But that didn't wash, and the EU acted in an appropriate and proportionate manner, and when they did, the emperor had no clothes. There was no gun to their head, there never was. This was a product of national decision making, and a lack of responsibility in a representative democracy. The final deal was harsher than the one it campaigned against. it wasn't the fault of previous Governments.  It couldn't be. 
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Jack Charlton
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sid waddell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Aug 2020 at 11:20pm
Originally posted by Het-field Het-field wrote:

And this raises a question as to what shade of the left has brought politics leftwards. To my point, its diverse in Europe, and the likes of the Irish Labour Party, the Irish Green Party are two of the most progressive forces in domestic affairs. But now they are the butt of invective from the new left in Ireland, who deem them to be "establishment" parties, which is a dog-whistle for right wing, and ignores the various aspects of social progress which was achieved under their watch, particularly Labour. And this is why the mass movement amongst the left is harder to see happen when the old adage about "the split" keeps appearing as a truth. In Ireland there is a split amongst the left, who conversely require each other's seats for survival, and they have to have a rhetoric with a different shade of leftism in order to be relevant. And this is why we now have an opposition stuffed with people whose goal is to argue that they can provide huge increases in social expenditure and expansion of social programs, while simultaneously reducing the tax base, and avoiding, at all costs, on an ideological level, so called regressive taxes. Naturally, the pragmatic left in the likes of Labour are wary of that, the likes of the Shinners see that as a vote getter, and the rest genuinely believe it. And what is interesting about some of the recent narrative in Irish politics is the absolutely unfounded allegations that are being made against state actors that it somehow riddled with classism. That is just populist guff, under the cloak of representation, and a co-opted monopoly on the politics of "caring".
Let's examine it by various countries

In terms of social issues, it was civil society campaigners who moved Ireland leftwards and I think you'll find that is the case in pretty much every country

Women's libbers with the contraceptive train etc. in the 70s, gay rights campaigners from the 1980s to the 2010s, the long slog of the repeal the 8th campaigners post-1983

In all cases they were derided as extremists, yet they continually moved the dial leftwards and eventually the centre came over to their way of thinking in all cases

This is the pattern throughout history

All the great campaigners for human rights were derided as extremists - the Suffragettes, Martin Luther King, Mandela

Yet they are regarded as heroes of history

In economic terms, the dial of the left has sort of been moved by young people fed up of neo-liberalism and working long hours and not being able to afford to buy a house and paying extortionate rents and having expensive childcare and having poor healthcare due to not being able to afford health insurance, stuff like that

They see hotels going up all over the place and Air BnBs crowding them out - this issue is an international one, the mayor of Barcelona was elected on the promise to stop hotel building

These are all market-driven phenomena

Unfortunately with housing, far right charlatans have tried to direct the blame onto immigrants - watch this space for how that issue will be exploited by them as a wedge

The politics of young people especially has become more radical as a result of all this, so hence the rise of Sanders, Corbyn, Sinn Fein 

But what seems to be the case is that the traditional drift rightwards of people as they get into their late 30s or 40s isn't really happening as much, certainly in this country 

Young people feel the establishment parties offer them nothing, and they're pretty much right on that

Amazingly enough (not) that leads to anger

Yet still the centrists don't really get it at all

Do the tax promises of Sinn Fein add up? Probably not, but they are at least showing policy urgency and have driven the housing issue, and forced it to the centre

And anyway, economies are not supposed to work like household budgets

In terms of "populism", Fine Gael and Labour have engaged in more than their fair share

"Not another cent", said Leo Varadkar, "Labour's way or Frankfurt's way", said Pat Rabbitte, of course they didn't deliver

If that's not populism, nothing is

The reason splits occur on the left, and why people desert left parties that don't deliver, is because the people involved generally feel much more deeply and passionately about changing society for the better than those in the centre or the right

And they're impatient - ordinary people see their lives going to sh*t, it's not in question that this generation has it harder than their parents' generation

The climate issue simply cannot wait

It's alright for somebody in Labour or the Greens (or FG or FF for that matter) who personally lives in comfortable circumstances in to say "be patient" to ordinary people, but ordinary people can't really afford to be patient

It comes down to this - neo-liberal Washington consensus politics offers nothing to people except existence

The reason the right never splits in meaningful terms is that they're all unprincipled rich ****s who even if they never got anything they wanted out of politics, they would still be laughing and living in the lap of luxury - when you're rich you can afford to be "pragmatic" - pragmatism is well off the menu for the right now though, they are firmly in the ascendant and plan to end democracy

It should be noted that the post-war social democratic, welfare state consensus in "the west" was driven by the existence of communism - the capitalists of the west feared communism so much that they felt they had to undercut it by offering its most attractive features

That's an example of "extremism" moving the dial

And right-wing extremists have consistently moved the overall dial rightwards

The irony of Trump is that the real pain that drove white working class people to him was economic pain which should find a natural home in support for people like Sanders

But the modus operandi of fascists, and possibly in the US more than any other country over history - is to exploit the economic pain of poorer whites and deflect the blame for it onto ethnic minorities, while in reality Trump and his fellow members of the elite, cossetted, gilded class now steal the produced wealth of America to feather their own nests 

Trump basically said "struggling white people, I feel your pain - and the reason you feel that pain is because blacks and Muslims and Mexicans are stealing what is rightfully yours"

Which was of course a total con and the exact same technique as the Nazis used

The lesson for centrists is - recognise the anger that's out there, deal with the reality that neo-liberal economics offers nothing to people, and come up with a bold progressive re-invention of politics

Otherwise, the far right will exploit this and gain serious ground with their snake oil

Even if Biden does manage to get in this time, what then? What if its just four more years of the same as we're used to from Democratic presidents, ie. milquetoast neo-liberalism which is better than the Republican version and cuts out the overt racism and fascism of Trump but doesn't really improve people's lot in any meaningful way, or fails to reverse decline?

Trump mark II will be waiting in 2024

That's why if Biden gets in it has to be Liz Warren and AOC and the progressives really driving things in a positive direction in all aspects of policy, not depressingly unimaginative centrists like Schumer and Pelosi

The chance is there for a new left to take over in 2020 in the opposite way to how the so called new right, ie, the crackpots, took over and framed America in their horrible image in 1980

The hardest part will be getting into power because the election is likely to be fixed


















Edited by sid waddell - Yesterday at 1:08am
"ONE-NIL!" - David Coleman, George Hamilton - "Finding The Words - The Art of Commentary"

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Jack Charlton
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sid waddell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 12:10am
Originally posted by Het-field Het-field wrote:


Realistically, the mass movement is unlikely to happen, simply because you won't get agreement between the centre-left, the left, the Shinners, and the Trots, and they will also be undercutting each other too, for relevance. We have now seen it in the UK with Labour. The moment Corbyn went, so did support for Labour from some quarters. Rather than gritting teeth, there is now an operative to pick apart anything Keir Starmer says or doesn't say. in fact, many of the things that are being said about Kamala Harris about her time as a prosecutor, as are being said about Keir Starmer from his time as DPP. But it is a return to form for people who view Labour as  "Blairite", and without Corbyn they want nothing to do with it. I mentioned the same style of faction in the US, its Bernie or bust. And I will say for both politicians, I am certain they don't want it that way. They want nothing more than to see the Tories or the Republicans soundly defeated and want them out and as quickly as possible. But that cant be said for all their supporters. Some of those supporters  will spend their time focussing on Starmer as opposed to Johnson, and Biden instead of Trump, and when the next election comes will sit at home in self-righteousness or vote for third parties.
The people you refer to on "the left" who are seriously targeting Starmer are mainly alternative media people rather than ordinary supporters, the vast, vast majority of those who Corbyn attracted to Labour will stick with Labour, at least in voting terms even if some drift away from party activity

This is also the case in the US with the Sanders supporters who will transfer their support en masse to Biden

Nonetheless there is a good bit of disquiet among a lot of people at the treatment of Rebecca Long-Bailey - it is felt, and not without reason in my view, that the centrists were waiting to make an example of her to "stick it" to the Corbyn wing of the party

There was the ludicrous situation where the editorial of The Independent was calling for her to resign or be sacked for simply tweeting a link to an article they had published

As I've said previously, this cuts both ways - there is a faction on the left who want to undermine Starmer, but we saw what happened when Corbyn became leader - he was viciously attacked and undermined by the centrists despite having an overwhelming mandate from the members, which was renewed the next year in greater numbers after the chicken coup

As somebody who would certainly vote Labour under Starmer had I a vote but who also supported Corbyn - I would always vote Labour were I in England because I feel it will always be the best option for a more progressive society - it's actually really irksome to hear calls for party unity from some people who did their damnedest to undermine party unity themselves, in fact some of them tried to hack the party apart

Those who left have not returned under Starmer which begs the question as to why they were in Labour in the first place given they claim to have left because of Corbyn













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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sid waddell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 12:53am
Originally posted by Het-field Het-field wrote:

And my point about parties like Syriza, remains sound. It was a very strong example of left wing populism. And my point is not about what got Greece to where it was (And there is a proper debate to be had about whether they were ever Neo-liberal governments at play there), but how it reacted, when it needed to deal decisively with a major budgetary issue, and in light of the the actions of other EU countries who had been in that situation. That was Syriza's role. It actually took the populist line about the EU, which other countries in dire straits didn't, and decided that saying "FU" to the EU was the way to go, after negotiating a deal. Under the cloak of democracy it put the vote to the people, while campaigning against it, and using populist nationalist and anti-EU sentiment to get the result it wanted. Of course they could throw off the shackles of responsibility either way, by pointing fingers at the people, who either embraced the EU approach or rejected it, and suffered the consequences. But that didn't wash, and the EU acted in an appropriate and proportionate manner, and when they did, the emperor had no clothes. There was no gun to their head, there never was. This was a product of national decision making, and a lack of responsibility in a representative democracy. The final deal was harsher than the one it campaigned against. it wasn't the fault of previous Governments.  It couldn't be. 
Greece cooked the books and entered the Euro as a prestige project but also because the EU wanted them in, so the EU has to take some blame

The Greek people are understandably very annoyed at what has happened to their country over the last 12 years and this has driven anti-EU sentiment there, we had it ourselves here for a few years

Austerity really doesn't work, even the IMF themselves have admitted this

More austerity off the back of Covid could seriously jeopardise the EU, austerity cannot be the answer again

Nor in my view do the fiscal compact rules because they seriously hamper the possibliity of stimulus and investment

Syriza gambled and lost, but the Greeks are in my view quite right to think the EU acted the bollix with them, and if the EU is to survive long term it has to demonstrate that it can make a positive difference to ordinary people's lives across the continent

In the case of Greece 2008-2015 and since, it failed badly, and no it was certainly not alone in that blame but has to take a significant chunk of it

In my view there should be greater EU federalisation, more fiscal transfers, more investment and funding public services, a more progressive, interventionist EU, but sadly this will not wash at national level politics on the part of those who would be "paying" and the cultural differences seem too great

All this goes back to the Euro, which was a deeply flawed creation - a monetary instrument which nations on their own could not control, and without the possibility of matching fiscal transfers, and fiscal hamstrings later brought in

In Ireland's case we managed to sort of ride through it - with the cost of hundreds of thousands having to leave the country and massive hardship - mainly because we had high levels of immigration, higher birth rates among the existing population, and we are a sort of unique case in that we are English speaking, in a favourable geographic location with historic foreign investment clusters (due to public investment in education over the years) and historically have had a low population and a non-mature economy and so a high potential for growth, that and we're a quasi-tax haven

Greece and Italy didn't have those advantages

I'm not very familiar with Portuguese politics but the Socialist party government there seems to be very popular and won re-election comfortably, would be interesting to look at what they are doing right that others aren't 

If their attitude to drugs is anything to go by they seem to be pretty enlightened about big ideas


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote planning Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 hours 7 minutes ago at 8:19am
Originally posted by Green Cockade Green Cockade wrote:

Re the NRA, a once powerful lobbying organisation, it is likely to cease to exist shortly thanks to legal action against the crooks who have been running it and ripping it off. It is already much diminished. The US election will be predominantly a referendum on Trump and what further chaos he can engender between now and November to add to that which he has already inflicted. Apart from the many positives that Harris brings to the ticket, she will provoke more misogynistic and racist outbursts from Trump that will further alienate the large majority of women ( 54% of the electorate ) in the country, most of whom already detest him. I don't see Covid under control or the economy recovering in any meaningful way in the short term and the hardcore GOP redneck vote, even if it substantially holds,is unlikely to mask the fact that under Trump they have pissed off all of the major demographics. Lose this one and the party could be out of the picture for a very long time, at least as long as it takes to re-invent itself. I incline towards optimism and while I would not recommend putting your house on the outcome, am predicting a blue wave with the Democrats taking the hat-trick of the Presidency, the House and the Senate.

Goodness only knows why. The Blue Wall was supposed to sweep Clinton into office 4 years ago. Trump tore it down. 

Even after the tree huggers, Russia inquiry, immigration, Iran deal torn up by him etc etc, his party retained the Senate 2 years ago, and increased their majority to rub it in.

A sitting American President of either party, only really begins his re election campaign from the Convention. As there is no Convention this year, he will only start to really get going in September and the debates. Biden hasn't had to say much so far, but from the debates on he will have to answer serious questions, and deal with the avalanche of what Trump throws at him while he's at it, on a daily basis. Even the moderate left admit he's a poor candidate, a Class III relic of the failed Obama regime, and Trump will remind him of it at every opportunity. 

Personally I think the idea of holding the election in November is insane in the current climate, when every other major world event this year has been postponed/cancelled, but they're resolutely determined to hold it then and put the health of thousands more people on the day at risk. The election itself will probably go as it usually does. As you see here, the left will howl at the moon about everything they think is wrong with the world, while the right will go and get the vote out. Women flocked in their droves to elect Trump 4 years ago and vote against one of their own, despite everything he said about them. Lefties are also far more open to declare who and what they're voting for, and declare themselves victors until the count starts, and they watch the states go red time and again. 

I agree that the election is a referendum on Trump but ultimately most Presidents are re elected, just one has failed to get his second term in the past 40 years. Therefore I fully expect Trump to still be in office this time next year. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pre Madonna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 hours 31 minutes ago at 9:55am
Originally posted by sid waddell sid waddell wrote:

Originally posted by Het-field Het-field wrote:


Realistically, the mass movement is unlikely to happen, simply because you won't get agreement between the centre-left, the left, the Shinners, and the Trots, and they will also be undercutting each other too, for relevance. We have now seen it in the UK with Labour. The moment Corbyn went, so did support for Labour from some quarters. Rather than gritting teeth, there is now an operative to pick apart anything Keir Starmer says or doesn't say. in fact, many of the things that are being said about Kamala Harris about her time as a prosecutor, as are being said about Keir Starmer from his time as DPP. But it is a return to form for people who view Labour as  "Blairite", and without Corbyn they want nothing to do with it. I mentioned the same style of faction in the US, its Bernie or bust. And I will say for both politicians, I am certain they don't want it that way. They want nothing more than to see the Tories or the Republicans soundly defeated and want them out and as quickly as possible. But that cant be said for all their supporters. Some of those supporters  will spend their time focussing on Starmer as opposed to Johnson, and Biden instead of Trump, and when the next election comes will sit at home in self-righteousness or vote for third parties.
The people you refer to on "the left" who are seriously targeting Starmer are mainly alternative media people rather than ordinary supporters, the vast, vast majority of those who Corbyn attracted to Labour will stick with Labour, at least in voting terms even if some drift away from party activity

This is also the case in the US with the Sanders supporters who will transfer their support en masse to Biden

Nonetheless there is a good bit of disquiet among a lot of people at the treatment of Rebecca Long-Bailey - it is felt, and not without reason in my view, that the centrists were waiting to make an example of her to "stick it" to the Corbyn wing of the party

There was the ludicrous situation where the editorial of The Independent was calling for her to resign or be sacked for simply tweeting a link to an article they had published

As I've said previously, this cuts both ways - there is a faction on the left who want to undermine Starmer, but we saw what happened when Corbyn became leader - he was viciously attacked and undermined by the centrists despite having an overwhelming mandate from the members, which was renewed the next year in greater numbers after the chicken coup

As somebody who would certainly vote Labour under Starmer had I a vote but who also supported Corbyn - I would always vote Labour were I in England because I feel it will always be the best option for a more progressive society - it's actually really irksome to hear calls for party unity from some people who did their damnedest to undermine party unity themselves, in fact some of them tried to hack the party apart

Those who left have not returned under Starmer which begs the question as to why they were in Labour in the first place given they claim to have left because of Corbyn













There has been a lot of people left the party since Sir Career took over, many before RLB was publicly humiliated for a triviality, many as a result of what feels like the creation of a hierarchy of racism in the party. That's certainly why I left, although he is given many more reasons since. He is chasing the 'blue Labour' vote. 'Blue Labour' is for working-class racists who have a stigma in admitting they are Tories: or even worse.
It is difficult to say how many people have left, numbers vary between 25,000 and 100,000 and it is made harder to gauge by the fact you only stop being a member for six months after stopping payment, but the bigger problem for the party is the lack of young activists. Starmer will have a real issue getting people to canvass for him in 4 years time. The people he pissed off, largely younger people who are very in tune with the anti-racist message that Corbyn built, as well as black activists themselves in larger cities, are those that have left. 
That will really hurt him.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sid waddell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 hours 31 minutes ago at 11:55am
Originally posted by pre Madonna pre Madonna wrote:

Originally posted by sid waddell sid waddell wrote:

Originally posted by Het-field Het-field wrote:


Realistically, the mass movement is unlikely to happen, simply because you won't get agreement between the centre-left, the left, the Shinners, and the Trots, and they will also be undercutting each other too, for relevance. We have now seen it in the UK with Labour. The moment Corbyn went, so did support for Labour from some quarters. Rather than gritting teeth, there is now an operative to pick apart anything Keir Starmer says or doesn't say. in fact, many of the things that are being said about Kamala Harris about her time as a prosecutor, as are being said about Keir Starmer from his time as DPP. But it is a return to form for people who view Labour as  "Blairite", and without Corbyn they want nothing to do with it. I mentioned the same style of faction in the US, its Bernie or bust. And I will say for both politicians, I am certain they don't want it that way. They want nothing more than to see the Tories or the Republicans soundly defeated and want them out and as quickly as possible. But that cant be said for all their supporters. Some of those supporters  will spend their time focussing on Starmer as opposed to Johnson, and Biden instead of Trump, and when the next election comes will sit at home in self-righteousness or vote for third parties.
The people you refer to on "the left" who are seriously targeting Starmer are mainly alternative media people rather than ordinary supporters, the vast, vast majority of those who Corbyn attracted to Labour will stick with Labour, at least in voting terms even if some drift away from party activity

This is also the case in the US with the Sanders supporters who will transfer their support en masse to Biden

Nonetheless there is a good bit of disquiet among a lot of people at the treatment of Rebecca Long-Bailey - it is felt, and not without reason in my view, that the centrists were waiting to make an example of her to "stick it" to the Corbyn wing of the party

There was the ludicrous situation where the editorial of The Independent was calling for her to resign or be sacked for simply tweeting a link to an article they had published

As I've said previously, this cuts both ways - there is a faction on the left who want to undermine Starmer, but we saw what happened when Corbyn became leader - he was viciously attacked and undermined by the centrists despite having an overwhelming mandate from the members, which was renewed the next year in greater numbers after the chicken coup

As somebody who would certainly vote Labour under Starmer had I a vote but who also supported Corbyn - I would always vote Labour were I in England because I feel it will always be the best option for a more progressive society - it's actually really irksome to hear calls for party unity from some people who did their damnedest to undermine party unity themselves, in fact some of them tried to hack the party apart

Those who left have not returned under Starmer which begs the question as to why they were in Labour in the first place given they claim to have left because of Corbyn













There has been a lot of people left the party since Sir Career took over, many before RLB was publicly humiliated for a triviality, many as a result of what feels like the creation of a hierarchy of racism in the party. That's certainly why I left, although he is given many more reasons since. He is chasing the 'blue Labour' vote. 'Blue Labour' is for working-class racists who have a stigma in admitting they are Tories: or even worse.
It is difficult to say how many people have left, numbers vary between 25,000 and 100,000 and it is made harder to gauge by the fact you only stop being a member for six months after stopping payment, but the bigger problem for the party is the lack of young activists. Starmer will have a real issue getting people to canvass for him in 4 years time. The people he pissed off, largely younger people who are very in tune with the anti-racist message that Corbyn built, as well as black activists themselves in larger cities, are those that have left. 
That will really hurt him.
The real thing to note about anti-Semitism is how it's generally only people of a particular political persuasion who will be accused of being anti-Semitic, with rare exceptions

That political persuasion being the Labour left

It's more of a hierarchy in UK politics in general of certain people being allowed to get away with racism while others get mendaciously accused of it

So we had a concerted and mendacious campaign to paint the Labour left as being one step away from the guards at Auschwitz, all while blatant anti-Semitism from elsewhere - including the Labour right, and the whole of the Tories, goes unchallenged

It's about Israel and we all know it

If you're pro-Israel you can generally be as anti-Semitic as you like, but if you recognise the reality of the Israel/Palestine situation, expect to be mendaciously targeted as an anti-Semite

That's why the only Tory I can think of who was painted as an anti-Semite - and mendaciously so - was Alan Duncan - who was pretty much the only Tory to be a fierce critic of Israel's behaviour

Jacob Rees-Mogg is a blatant anti-Semite, Michael Gove invokes anti-Semitic tropes as well, not a word about it in the UK press

Trump and the Republicans, Orban, Duterte, Putin etc. all are anti-Semites but because they're pro-Israel, they get away with it

When Kevin Myers became a rare right-wing voice to be sanctioned for anti-Semitism - and the stuff he wrote was appalling and completely anti-Semtic - there were right-wingers and even some Jews queueing up to defend him

Why? Because he's pro-Israel - this was wheeled out as the excuse for why he could not be anti-Semitic

Myers was only thrown overboard because he was seen as sort of expendable and what he wrote was so blatant it could not be ignored, but guess what, he's actually worming his way back into the press now with the help of INM, Newstalk and The Spectator, he's being rehabilitated, maybe Newstalk will give him and Ron Atkinson their own show

Go back to earlier this year when it looked like Bernie Sanders might win the nomination - Republicans and indeed centrist Democrat trolls online genuinely tried to smear him as an anti-Semite

The mind boggles


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Olaf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 hours 21 minutes ago at 5:05pm
Originally posted by planning planning wrote:

Originally posted by Green Cockade Green Cockade wrote:

Re the NRA, a once powerful lobbying organisation, it is likely to cease to exist shortly thanks to legal action against the crooks who have been running it and ripping it off. It is already much diminished. The US election will be predominantly a referendum on Trump and what further chaos he can engender between now and November to add to that which he has already inflicted. Apart from the many positives that Harris brings to the ticket, she will provoke more misogynistic and racist outbursts from Trump that will further alienate the large majority of women ( 54% of the electorate ) in the country, most of whom already detest him. I don't see Covid under control or the economy recovering in any meaningful way in the short term and the hardcore GOP redneck vote, even if it substantially holds,is unlikely to mask the fact that under Trump they have pissed off all of the major demographics. Lose this one and the party could be out of the picture for a very long time, at least as long as it takes to re-invent itself. I incline towards optimism and while I would not recommend putting your house on the outcome, am predicting a blue wave with the Democrats taking the hat-trick of the Presidency, the House and the Senate.

Goodness only knows why. The Blue Wall was supposed to sweep Clinton into office 4 years ago. Trump tore it down. 

Even after the tree huggers, Russia inquiry, immigration, Iran deal torn up by him etc etc, his party retained the Senate 2 years ago, and increased their majority to rub it in.

A sitting American President of either party, only really begins his re election campaign from the Convention. As there is no Convention this year, he will only start to really get going in September and the debates. Biden hasn't had to say much so far, but from the debates on he will have to answer serious questions, and deal with the avalanche of what Trump throws at him while he's at it, on a daily basis. Even the moderate left admit he's a poor candidate, a Class III relic of the failed Obama regime, and Trump will remind him of it at every opportunity. 

Personally I think the idea of holding the election in November is insane in the current climate, when every other major world event this year has been postponed/cancelled, but they're resolutely determined to hold it then and put the health of thousands more people on the day at risk. The election itself will probably go as it usually does. As you see here, the left will howl at the moon about everything they think is wrong with the world, while the right will go and get the vote out. Women flocked in their droves to elect Trump 4 years ago and vote against one of their own, despite everything he said about them. Lefties are also far more open to declare who and what they're voting for, and declare themselves victors until the count starts, and they watch the states go red time and again. 

I agree that the election is a referendum on Trump but ultimately most Presidents are re elected, just one has failed to get his second term in the past 40 years. Therefore I fully expect Trump to still be in office this time next year. 

Exactly, well summarised. 

This is going to be an interesting election, when we look at the polls currently... they look nearly identical to 2016 with Clinton, we seen how that went. Lay mans terms is always easiest in politics, particularly in the US. Trump is nothing sort of an expert on a stage having a debate, it's where he's in his comfort zone. Joe Biden struggles to answer questions on CNN without stumbling over his own words. I think most can recall Trumps now famous line to Clinton 'You'd be in jail'. Biden simply has too many skeletons in the closet after years in various posts. He voted for the Iraq War, Opposed school segregation in the 1970s', voted for Bill Clintons 1994 crime bill, (Thats still going well) Anita Hill Hearings (They're well worth a read), he can also be linked to every single Barack Obama failure. The democrats had no one to fight Trump off with, who was new and energetic (like a younger Obama) so they simply rolled out soon to be 78 year old Joe Biden. Someone lime Cuomo would have gave Trump a harder task of keeping his job. 

His presidency has had failures, and also successes. He done fantastic work into NYC during the pandemic, Cuomo himself admitted it. USNS Comfort sailing into the City during the height of a pandemic when NYC was on its knees all brought about by the federal government. Trump kept many of his promises he restored the US rust belt, he brought back their jobs and with that, hope.  

Stephen Bannon is now back in the Trump circle (unofficially or officially), he is without doubt the lefts idea of the devil. But he has the ability to propel Trump to another victory. 


Edited by Olaf - 12 hours 20 minutes ago at 5:06pm
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