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Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Former head of BHS enjoys the life of luxury while former employees and pensioners face a bleak future.

Sir Philip Green having a whale of a time as BHS sinks.

The totally unacceptable face of capitalism. A £571 million "hole" in BHS pension funds, 11,000 BHS workers facing the sack and this wretched man and his family enjoy a life of luxury in the South of France. 

"Do you mind not looking at me like that, it's disturbing me,"

His appearance at the House of Commons Select Committee was a performance of arrogance, self satisfaction, greed, disrespect and complete indifference. We do not need to ask where all the money has gone. Green's lifestyle, his £100 million super yacht the latest addition to his fleet which already boasts, a speedboat, a helicopter and three yachts, as part of his transport collection, says everything about this loathsome man, who's family received hundreds of millions from BHS in dividends and rent.
Green has been accused by two Commons select committee of the “systematic plunder” of the high street chain and failing to address the deficit as he “accrued incredible wealth” for his family.

"Sir" Philip Green should be stripped of his knighthood and prosecuted.

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Elements within the Parliamentary Labour Party and within the National Executive attempt to stifle debate.

Allow the membership to take a view.

Dorchester Branch members

The West Dorset Constituency Labour Party, of which I am a member (Dorchester Branch), has again chosen not to hold a special meeting to discuss endorsement of one or other of the candidates in the forthcoming Labour Party leadership election. There now seems to be some debate if not controversy in Dorset, as the CLP management committee came to the same view prior to the leadership contest of last year. The following exchanges with the CLP, outline the extent of the controversy:

"It is noted that the recent instructions from the National Executive Committee of the Labour Party, sent by e-mail to Chair and Secretaries by Isobel Laing, Regional Administrator, Labour South West has suspended Constituency Labour Party meetings together with Labour party branch meetings ", during the period of the Leadership election". It is further noted that the NEC instructions are qualified to exclude, "CLP Supporting Nomination Meetings – and meetings which relate to National Labour Party Conference (contemporary resolutions etc).
Under this provision from the NEC, it is hereby requested that a "Special meeting" of the Dorchester Labour Party Branch and the West Dorset Constituency Labour Party be convened no later than Thursday September 1st or such other dates as may be set in order to avoid a conflict of dates between branch and constituency meetings.
The purpose of such "Special Meetings" is to consider the following:

This Constituency Party, is appalled that less than 12 months after the leadership election of 2015, the Labour Party is faced with another leadership election resulting from a challenge mounted by certain elements from within the Parliamentary Labour Party. We consider that actions of the PLP are divisive in the extreme for the Labour party, and are of benefit only to the Conservative party, their supporters and those sections of the media and television who have historically been or are now hostile to the Labour party.
The PLP have behaved despicably in their conspiracy to overturn the democratic decision of Labour party members taken in September of last year. A conspiracy which has been under construction for at least 18 months and has now resulted in the shabby farce of a leadership challenge mounted by Owen Smith, as the sacrificial "stalking horse", because none of the PLP "heavy weights" had the courage to stand up themselves but were quite prepared to bully Smith into the role of challenger.


Consequently, it is therefore resolved that this Consistency Labour Party endorses Jeremy Corbyn for the role of Leader of the Labour Party in the current Leadership election contest. It is further resolved that this Constituency Labour Party condemns in the strongest possible terms the actions and motives of the Parliamentary Labour Party in launching this challenge to the leadership and for inflaming division and discord within the party."

The response from the CLP Secretary was disappointing:

"The executive committee of West Dorset CLP have taken the decision not to hold a supporting nomination meeting for the leadership contest. It is for each individual
member to decide how they will vote in a one member one vote election.

It is likely that we will be holding a meeting to discuss a contemporary motion to 

conference in September.


After due consideration of the CLP response, I sent the following:

"Thank you for your e-mail.
Frankly, I am disappointed that the West Dorset CLP executive committee should take "the decision not to hold a supporting nomination meeting for the leadership contest", without any opportunity for party members in the Constituency to express an opinion. I recall that the Constituency executive took the same decision prior to the Labour Party leadership election of September last year, which I and others found very disappointing.
Whilst I agree that, "It is for each individual member to decide how they will vote in a one member one vote election" the fact remains that under these circumstances. there is no difference between a Trade Union giving a collective endorsement to one or other candidates, but at the same time recognising that individual members of the Union or affiliated organisation, may well support another candidate. There is no such thing as, "collective responsibility" on the question of nominations or endorsements.
Constituency Parties, Trade Unions and affiliated organisations may choose to endorse or nominate one candidate, while some of their membership may vote differently in the subsequent ballot.

In view of these comments, I request that the decision not to hold a special meeting to consider the contents of my e-mail of yesterday (22nd July 2016) be reviewed as a matter of urgency.


It is a worrying and sinister feature of the present situation in the Labour Party, that elements within the PLP and the National Executive Committee, should seek to stifle debate within the party while at the same time banging on about "Democracy".

I am awaiting a response from West Dorset CLP.

Orchestrated smears released on the hour. The PLP sink to new depths of desperation.

The Parliamentary Labour Party resort to personal smear in their campaign to remove Corbyn,

How much lower can the conspirators of the PLP stoop in their wretched campaign of hate and smear against Jeremy Corbyn? 

Conor McGinn. "Corbyn threatened to ring my dad" 

In a day which has seen the orchestrated release of "bullying" smears, the conspirators of the PLP have exceeded even their own duplicitous levels of treachery last seen with the hourly resignations from the Shadow cabinet just a few short weeks ago. Today however, their campaign of sedition to oust Jeremy Corbyn has become more sinister, as their own interpretation of "bullying" has resorted to attacks directed at the individual on a spiteful personal basis.

Angela Eagle: "Corbyn allows a culture of bullying"

Having failed with their first plot of harmonised resignations to bring about Corbyn's resignation, they tried the tactic of a vote of "No Confidence", which also flopped when, again, Corbyn refused to step down. Now, having no real alternative but to mount a leadership challenge, the plotters were faced with the problem of finding a candidate to take on the role of "stalking horse" as nobody in the ranks of the PLP "big guns",had the courage or the backbone to take on the challenge.

     "Open letter" signed by 44 MPs, part of the orchestrated bullying smears against Jeremy Corbyn

Today has seen the launch of the last desperate throw to discredit Corbyn, in order to to gain some ground as they fall further behind in the arguments and in the credibility of their personalities.
However, they have chosen a most vile and despicable vehicle in which to advance their cause. The personalisation of their campaign will ultimately prove to be counter productive, as throughout the course of the day, Corbyn has again demonstrated his refusal to rise to the bait no matter how much the plotters, aided by the BBC and particularly Sky News, have endeavoured to provoke an exchange of insult and smear. Jeremy Corbyn has stated for months, even before the leadership election of last year, that he does not engage in exchanges of insults and prefers to debate the issues rather than personalities.

Owen Smith. "I am very radical"

This has frustrated and confounded Corbyn's critics throughout his campaign for the leadership last year and their frustration continues even now. Changing their tack from "Jeremy is a nice guy really" to embark upon a vicious and vile hate attack, orchestrated with the media and television, exposes these shallow creatures as the hypocrites and self centred degenerates they actually are.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Owen Smith says "Austerity is right". The challenger offering more of the same.

Owen Smith to face Corbyn in Labour leadership challenge

Owen Smith

Same old clich├ęs, same old empty rhetoric.
Owen Smith, former head of policy and government relations for Pfizer, former radio producer for BBC, former lobbyist (who voted against a statutory register of lobbyists when he became an MP) now seeks to become leader of the Labour Party. In this quest, he is supported by Benn, Eagle, Kinnock and others, who recognise him as another of their kind. The "suit" who will maintain the status quo within the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) and restore their position as the dominant clique leading the party. Not a Blairite as such, but as close as it is possible to get, while still maintaining the party line of "Unity", "Representing working people", "New generation to take party forward", "Helping people get on", and all the other well worn banalities that party members have heard so often in the past.

"Austerity is right" says Owen Smith. With Angela Eagle on the Marr show. 

On the Andrew Marr programme, Smith actually stated that "Austerity is right" but quickly followed this with the qualification "but we need a plan for prosperity" as if hoping that nobody had noticed. In that one quote, Owen Smith defines what the Labour Party would revert to under his leadership. A party offering the British people more of the same old Labour, a party which offers Tory-lite, a party which proposes watered down conservative policies, in a different shaped box, wrapped in a different coloured paper. This explains why the plotters of the PLP, are (mostly but not all), now so enthusiastic in their endorsement and support for Smith. Until mid day yesterday, Angela Eagle was the greatest thing since sliced bread amongst many of the plotters, but less than six hours later, she had been sidelined and abandoned for the Lancashire lad, raised in Barry and now MP for Pontypridd.

If the Labour party is to maintain the progress in policy proposals that has been made over the last 10 months, the anti austerity party, building more houses, rolling back NHS privatisation, bringing energy companies under public control, removing anti trade union legislation, investing in industry, controlling the excesses of the banking and finance industries, attacking tax evasion and avoidance and all the other policies which we shall implement following the next election, we must ensure that the party maintains the drive and commitment of the present leadership reaching out to the people of the United Kingdom with a clear, radical alternative.
We cannot afford to have Owen Smith, or any of the other discredited conspirators of the PLP, as Leaders of our party. We have been there before under Brown and Milliband and on each occasion we have failed because we failed to offer the British people a real choice.

Over the course of the coming months of the election campaign, we can expect the usual suspects within the PLP, encouraged and supported by their sponsors and friends in the media and television, to launch an even more aggressive and hostile campaign than that waged during the election of last year. With Owen Smith as their front, it is their last desperate attempt to wrench control of the Labour party away from the membership and restore their own dominance.

For the sake of the people that we represent and for the sake of this country, we must not allow this to happen. We must support the present leadership with Jeremy Corbyn as Leader.

Monday, 11 July 2016

Angela Eagle could face "deselection".

The first report in the mainstream media (Guardian, this morning) of a situation which has been common knowledge for over a week. Angela Eagle is in conflict with her Wallasey Constituency Party over her bid to challenge for the leadership of the Labour Party, and their overwhelming support Jeremy Corbyn the present leader.The first report in the mainstream media (Guardian, this morning) of a situation which has been common knowledge for over a week. Angela Eagle is in conflict with her Wallasey Constituency Party over her bid to challenge for the leadership of the Labour Party, and their overwhelming support Jeremy Corbyn the present leader.

Angela Eagle is to launch her challenge for the Labour leadership, in a move which will anger many members of her Wallasey Constituency party, 

The first report in the mainstream media of a situation which has been common knowledge for over a week. Angela Eagle is in conflict with her Wallasey Constituency Party over her bid to challenge for the leadership of the Labour Party, and their overwhelming support Jeremy Corbyn the present leader.
There are already calls from within her constituency that she should be deselected, calls which will become more numerous when (or if) her declaration to stand is made official. Eagle has stated that she will declare today (Monday 11th July),which raises the prospect of another leadership contest in the near future, should Wallasey CLP deselect her as their MP.
I have recently come across an article written by Bob Pit which describes how Eagle first came to be the MP for Wallasey in 1992. The intervention of Frank Field (MP for the neighbouring Birkenhead constituency) and the then (1990 ) National Executive of the Labour party, was instrumental in ensuring that the conservative party candidate Lynda Chalker, held the seat until 1992gIn 1987, however, Chalker only narrowly held on to the seat, with her majority reduced from 6,708 to 279, in the face of a vigorous campaign by the local Labour party in support of its candidate, Lol Duffey

Lol Duffey

When the selection of the Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the Wallasey CLP commenced in late 1991, Lol Duffy clearly emerged as the CLP preferred candidate. However, more skulduggery involving Roy Hattersley and other hand picked members of an NEC "interview panel" resulted in Angela Eagle being "parachuted in" to contest the now safe Labour seat of Wallasey. The CLP members were again denied their preferred candidate.

Lol Duffy worked diligently for Angela Eagle during the general election. “I’m not going to go off and sulk just because the NEC has broken every rule in the book to prevent me being a candidate,” he said. Thanks to the years of hard work put in by himself and others in the constituency the seat was taken from the Tories and Eagle became the first Labour MP for Wallasey.

Eagle is not then unfamiliar with intrigue and conspiracies, which may explain her contempt for a democratic decision taken only last September and for the members of her constituency party.

The full text of the article can be found at: How Angela Eagle got to be MP for Wallasey 

There are already calls from within her constituency that she should be deselected, calls which will become more numerous when (or if) her declaration to stand is made official. Eagle has stated that she will declare today (Monday 11th July),which raises the prospect of another leadership contest in the near future, should Wallasey CLP deselect her as their MP.
There are already calls from within her constituency that she should be deselected, calls which will become more numerous when (or if) her declaration to stand is made official. Eagle has stated that she will declare today (Monday 11th July),which raises the prospect of another leadership contest in the near future, should Wallasey CLP deselect her as their MP.

New Agenda on Sunday. is out! Edition of 10 July 2016

Good morning everyone.

After a delay of some seven years, "The Chilcot Report" was finally published this week. The report told us nothing that we did not already know about the lies, deceit and glaring untruths which led to the invasion of Iraq and the deaths of 179 British service personnel and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi men, women and children. The report was highly critical of Tony Blair's role, his secret "agreement" with George Bush, and his presentations to the House of Commons. Alastair Campbell must have read a copy with text different from everyone else and Lord Falconer demonstrated on Question Time (BBC 1 Thursday) that he too is in denial of reality. We have not heard the last of Chilcot as the fall out continues.
(Footnote: Interesting how Saddam killed thousands of his own people and got invaded and yet Mugabe kills millions of his own people and no one says a word.)

Britain's Heather Watson hugs Henri Kontinen

Britain's Andy Murray

Lewis Hamilton

The Wimbledon fortnight (which seems more like the Wimbledon month) and the associated wall to wall television coverage, is now over until next July. Congratulations to Andy Murray for winning the men’s singles for the second time and Heather Watson for winning, along with her partner Henri Kontinen, the mixed doubles title. Strange how the media use the phrase "British champions" to describe Murray from Scotland and Watson from Guernsey in the press adulation, and yet use the word "English" to describe Lewis Hamilton in his historic win in the British Grand Prix. Congratulations to him also.

Candidate for Prime Minister has links to Channel Islands

Andrea Leadsom has suggested that having children gives her an advantage over rival Theresa May in the race to Downing Street. A crass and insensitive comment which clearly indicates a lack of judgement. Leadsom also says the she has no connection to offshore banking in the Channel Islands, other than a mortgage arrangement with a bank in Guernsey. This is in contrast to the story in the Jersey Evening Post dated 11th July, which reports of Leadsom having "family and investment ties to the Channel Islands". Where do the Tories find these potential Prime Ministers? 

It is our anniversary this coming week, so we are having a few days away. It is forecast that the sea crossing will be a bit rough, the weather will be a bit wet and windy while we are there, but will become sunny and warm as we leave. It is July. Ces't la vie.

Have a nice week.


Sunday, 10 July 2016

A leadership challenge on Monday?

Labour in turmoil as Eagle announces leadership bid

Every day, for the past ten days, (even though it seems more like ten weeks), Angela Eagle has been emerging from her front door then stopping at the gate, to announce to the assembled photographers, cameramen and a collection of assorted reporters, that Jeremy Corbyn "must consider his position", or do the "honourable thing and stand down" or some other variation on the same lines. She then goes on, with monotonous regularity, to threaten that if "Jeremy does not step down" or "resign" that she, "will mount a challenge" and "I will stand for the leadership, I will, I will, I have sufficient support, I have" etc etc. 
The majority of the media are beside themselves with glee in the wake of Angela Eagle's comment of yesterday (Saturday 9th July) that she would announce a bid for the leadership of the Labour party on Monday morning, adding that she would “explain my vision for the country and the difference a strong Labour party can make”. In view of the "will she, won't she" antics of the past 10 days, the media are perhaps a little premature in the asserting that a challenge will be launched on Monday, but their blood lust for a Labour Party contest is almost insatiable. 
Another complication in this already complex situation, is the rift between Angela Eagle and her Wallasey Constituency Party, who have declared support for Jeremy Corbyn as party leader. It is always problematic when a sitting MP is at odds with their Constituency parties, as many MP's in the plotters ranks are on this issue
However, it seems highly probable that there will be a Labour leadership contest stretching through the summer in parallel with the conservative leadership contest already under way. 
The Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) however have a significant problem whichever candidate they select to challenge for the leadership. Since the mass resignations from the Shadow Cabinet took place, the credibility of the PLP as "an honourable group of MP's seeking to do their best for Party and country", has been shattered. Firstly, it has been known for some time, that a plot to stage a coup against Jeremy Corbyn has been in preparation since even before the result of the leadership contest of last year was announced. Secondly the launch of the coup was delayed when the results of the local council elections in May coupled with the outcome of elections for Mayor in cities around the country, proved to be substantially better than the plotters had predicted. This resulted in the European Referendum result being used as the excuse for the putsch to take place. This was a mistake in timing and in justification. Thirdly, the coup organisers wrongly believed that a mass resignation from the Shadow Cabinet, would bring about the immediate resignation of Corbyn as party leader. When Corbyn's resignation failed to materialise, a vote of "No Confidence" was cobbled together in the vain hope that this would bring about the desired effect. Again, no resignation came about and the plotters retreated to a position of "Jeremy must resign" statements issued almost on an hourly basis, every day embarking in a war of attrition, as they desperately sought a solution to their self inflicted embarrassment.


The PLP have now it seems, come to the view that they will have to formally challenge for the leadership as Jeremy Corbyn has refused to hand it to them on a plate. They have still have to resolve who their challenger will be, as both the Angela Eagle and the Owen Smith camps consider that their respective choice is right for the post. Perhaps there may be others amongst their number who will emerge over the coming days to launch their own challenge. The PLP however, still have the "credibility problem". They are now viewed by many, not as a principled group of MP's acting for the party and country, but as opportunistic hypocrites in pursuit of their own agenda's, engaged in a grubby little coup to overthrow a democratically elected leader. It is a perception which will be difficult, if not impossible to cast off and the legacy of their attempted coup will be with them for some considerable time.
Tomorrow, Monday, might witness the start of the Labour leadership contest should Angela Eagle come down her garden path and say something different to the parrot like repetitions of the past the days. Whatever the next few days may bring, it will be a very long and a very bloody Labour Party Leadership election.