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February 19, 2009

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Graham Marlowe

Well. we will have to agree to disagree, Paul. It seems to me the PLP is taking the attitude we've all got to die some day, so lets all start smoking 100 fags a day and hasten it.

I mean you no personal disrespect, Paul, but I really don't think many of you in Westminster have any idea just how loathed Brown now is - one of the biggest complaints being that he was unelected by the electorate, and though always the first to take credit for the good years is very tardy in shouldering his share of the blame now: the fact that he is pinning so much on the G8 talks in london shows how desperate he is - he thinks it will make all the nay-sayers stop in their tracks and give him an ovation. He truly is the Mr McCawber of politics - hoping something will turn up, but this current downturn will be so deep, I predict, the only thing likely to turn up will be his toes (politically that is).

Courage is needed, that's all: somebody needs to tell him to his face what Hutton is believed to have told journalists a couple of years ago: the only time he has been right on anything. "Brown" he said, "will be a ******* terrible Prime Minister.

The problem with loyalty is that you may well be sentencing this country to a decade of Cameron/Osborne.

Paul Flynn

There are plenty of reasons for pessimism about Labour's future - as there were about John Major in 1991.

A year and a bit is an eternity in politics. I'll stick with my optimism.

Kay Tie

"There is just a chance, with the right man or woman....."

You're not thinking of Harriet Harman, niece of the Countess of Longford, daughter of a Harley Street surgeon? But you were telling us only the other day that it's wrong to hate Jews and Catholics but it's OK to detest those born to privilege.

"you could be out of power for 10/12 years. Perhaps even longer."

I'm hoping for "forever". And under Harriet's leadership, that is within reach. It's almost worth joining the party just so I can vote for her.

Graham Marlowe

"But I do know that this is not the right time to change the Labour leader.

Posted by: Paul Flynn "


I really don't know why, Paul. Let's face it, if you stick with Brown you will lose the next election - and by a not insignificant amount, I venture to say. If Camerron got a majority of 150-170 like Blair did in '97, you could be out of power for 10/12 years. Perhaps even longer.

I agree with the Tories in one thing: they are not sentimental about their leaders: when they saw Thatcher was on the skids and losing them popularity, they ditched her. Then two years later they went on to win another election. Against all the odds, really. There is just a chance, with the right man or woman.....

John

I couldn't agree with you more Kay Tie to believe what the print media and indeed some of the broadcast media puts out is a dangerous thing I believe the internet is the greatest force for empowerment of the individual that we have ever seen since the arrival of the printed word.
No politician can now come out with any lie or fabrication without it being revealed to be so by a click of a mouse.
I am disappointed though that we seem to be still stuck in 2 party politics a choice between 2 parties to lead our country is no choice at all.
We need Proportional representation to inject some democaracy into our system but teh politicians from both of the main aprties are scared of losing their gravy train

Kay Tie

I was just quoting Graham and doing the maths, Paul.

I don't read the Daily Mail. Sometimes I get Rickrolled and end up there, but it's not through choice. I read The Times, the Telegraph, and the Guardian. Rarely the Independent now (it has become anti-scientific).

I prefer to get my information from blogs. Rather than read the witterings of a journalist about Labour MPs I prefer to hear what you have to say, just as I prefer to hear what John Redwood has to say rather than read a distortion of his views.

Paul Flynn

I know things are bad Kay Tie, but where do those figures come from? Not the Daily Mail. surely?

Paul Flynn

The only thing that we can be certain of in politics now is surprises. I have stopped predicting the future.

But I do know that this is not the right time to change the Labour leader.

Graham Marlowe

Well, possibly, but judging by his recent antics, even Old Mother Riley would make a better PM than Gordon Brown. I just do not see the point of waiting on dstruction like this. I think the "longest suicide note in history" was not written by Michael Foot in 1983, but by GB in 2008/9

Kay Tie

"19% of voters of all parties would like to see Jack straw as leader, David Milliband 15%, Alan Johnson 9%, harriet 5% Ed Balls 4%, Jon Cruddas 2%, Ed Miliband gets 1% only and (I am delighted to say) so does Purnell. And Andy Burnham."

And streets ahead with 55% is "None Of The Above".

Graham Marlowe

I honestly don't think Brown will bounce again: I really am astonished, Paul when I talk to people in shops - assistants and customers) neighbours etc how much genuine "hatred" not a word I use lightly (I despise Brown and Blair I don't hate them if you understand me) there is for Brown - everything from not being elected (I point out to them neither was John Major in the first instance) by them, to the fact that he is Scottish, the current economic downturn, unemployment - even for the fact that youngsters are going around stabbing each other (how could any PM be personally to blame for that?): he is to blame for everything - and this isn't in a leafy Tory shire - it is in a slightly run down London borough).

Of course, I don't blame him for stabbing, or the fact he is Scottish or that he was not elected (it was up to the PLP to have ensured an election not a coronation, and John McDonnell should certainly ahve been allowed to stand), but I do think he has to take his fair share of blame for our economic woes, and Britain deserves a good Business minister, not the preening peacock we do have. But still, what is done is done, I really think he has now been given long enough to do his best and his best frankly isn't good enough.

I know it is a Tory paper, but today's London Standardhas published a poll conducted yesterday by "PoliticsHome.com, which suggests 19% of voters of all parties would like to see Jack straw as leader, David Milliband 15%, Alan Johnson 9%, harriet 5% Ed Balls 4%, Jon Cruddas 2%, Ed Miliband gets 1% only and (I am delighted to say) so does Purnell. And Andy Burnham.

I suppose Mr Straw is now seen as an eminence grice, and, without wishing to cause offence, can be seen as being all things to all men. I think D Miliband has blown his chances frankly after the events of both 2007 and 2008 where he seemed indesicive. But I really don't think the party should wait till after the general election. As the Tories found in 1997, the more you lose by, the less likely it will be you will come back at the election after - or the one after that - the figures are stacked too high against you.

To add to the woes, I see Field the alleged Labour MP for Birkenhead has come out yet again today with his "New Deal was a £75billion expensive failure". I don't know why he has reannounced it - he said so on a Radio 4 programme a few weeks ago and the same report was carried in a newspaper last week as well.

If the PLP are too sensitive I'd be more than happy to come round and give Mr brown his P45! :)

Kay Tie

"Who knows what the situation will be be in June 2010. If a change is to made, the timing is crucial."

Ah yes, the holding on for events. Didn't Lucky Jim decide to do the same in autumn 1978?

Kay Tie

"It becomes clearer every day that Cameron/Osborne have no real answers to our problems, they are just looking for the next days headlines - they are as clueless, and opportunistic."

I'm afraid this was the accusation hurled at Blair in 1997 too. In opposition you have no real answers: you have no access to detailed information or any serious policy machinery. You have to rely on the tools of opposition: humbug, spin and Government incompetence. David Cameron is very fortunate with the last of these.

patrick

We must take note in these enlightened political times that it's totally legal to stealth bomb and murder thousands of innocents but you face jail for throwing a shoe at the perpetrator.

Paul Flynn

Thanks. There has been no time that I can recall when political support has been more volatile. There was a Brown bounce when he first became PM. Labour's support troughed at 25% in July last year, went up to hung parliament levels of 36% in August and is now down to 26%.

Who knows what the situation will be be in June 2010. If a change is to made, the timing is crucial.

That is thinking among most labour MPs.

The issues that I am involved with will still be with us whoever wins the next election

John

I agree with you Graham. It seems we are reminded everyday of the incompetance of this Government when they announce a new intiative and I speak as a long time Labour voter until we went into Iraq. The stiffling of expert advice from the ACMD to NuSAC is the behaviour you would expect form some tinpot totatlitarian regime. The erosion of our civil liberties seems to confirm this.
On the 9th of Feb we had a law introduced supposedly to protect us from terrorism ( !!! ) that makes it illegal to take pictures of the Police. Its not enough that on every corner we are on film or photographed but now the Police's actions can no longer be filmed if the officer involved decides he doesn't want to be. This is outrageous.
I forget who said "a true democracy is when a Government is scared of its people not when the people are scared of their Government"
As graham says the Tories seem to offer no alternative. I for one will not be voting for either of the 2 parties we need a huge paradigm shift in our politics away from the 2 party system. But I fear so much of our electorate is so disenfranchised from politics and that the sheeple who do vote are unable to see beyond the 2 main parties.

Graham Marlowe

I know I have said this before, paul, but just how much longer are the PLP going to allow Brown and his abysmal team of toadies to go on?. Secrecy and deception seems to be his watchwords.

You begin to think of the Clunking Fist in terms of April 1945 - the Fuerher in his bunker with Peter "Goebells" Mandelson, Jacqui "Eva Braun" Smith and a few other hopeless sycophants all knowing their number is up and acting ever more bizarrely.

What is really lamentable is that the PLP - even left-wingers who have no reason to be grateful or loyal to Brown/Blair are perfectly content, so it seems, to let this walking disaster lead them to wipeout at the next general election, when there might still be time, under a different leader, to at least minimize the damage, and perhaps even do as John Major did in 1992 and win them a fourth term.

It becomes clearer every day that Cameron/Osborne have no real answers to our problems, they are just looking for the next days headlines - they are as clueless, and opportunistic.

A new leader should ensure that there was a genuine government of all the talents - from the left as well as the right, and would need to remove some of the Blair/Brown old cronies who have been littering the cabinet for far too long - one of them dragged back from obscurity, and another from administration in Europe.

Time is running out - it needs to be done soon: I don't think it matters how it is done: my preferred option would be for the men in grey suits to advise him to resign for health reasons (he looks very raddled anyway), but if he doesn't, then the PLP needs to be brutal: a vote of no confidence and then the sack. And lets be honest - judging by his performance since last Autumn who can possibly have confidence in him?

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