New Labour Is Finished… Whats Next?

The outrageous events of the last week have shown all too clearly just what toxic individuals fester at the heart of the New Labour government. However these toxic individuals are merely a symptom of the wider disease that his crippled the government and the party that have led us for 11 years and it is a disease that is clearly terminal. You’d struggle to find many ordinary people in Britain today who believe the New Labour project has been successful or lament its demise. In fact if you ask people for their opinion of the last 11 years you’ll find responses which are far to obscene to write here! There is a general feeling amongst the public that the Tories are bad but Labour are worse because they’ve hidden their deceptions through their hyperactive spin machines and abandoned their own principles and philosophy for the sake of political power. “At least you knew what you were getting with the Tories” is a phrase I hear muttered alot and whilst I think the general publics attitude towards us is rather unfair and indeed 11 years out of date, I understand where it has originated from.

However the ironic thing about the whole New Labour project, as many of their own including former Deputy Leader Roy Hattersley have conceded, is that its greatest supposed ‘achievements’ have only been made possible through following Conservative, indeed Thatcherite, policy particularly in regard to economics. This is not to say they followed it to the letter or that it was flawless. No political platform, however much we might like to argue otherwise, is flawless. However their acceptance and development of privatisation and extension of neo-liberal economic inspired by the Thatcher years did indeed continue the already prevailing economic stability and prosperity that Britain was experiencing and it would be churlish of Labour’s greatest of critics to deny this. As one commentator put it New Labour in the economic sense “brought Thatcherism full circle”. However that circle has ended and as Jim Callaghan said every 30 or 40 years there is a sea change in British politics, we are experiencing such a sea change and it is up to the government of the day to initiate and equipt the country for it. That, amongst many other things, is where New Labour have failed.

They are a party and a government who are and have always been bereft of ideas of their own. They are sailing blind without, considering the weeks events, any hint of a moral compass. New Labour lacks the wherewithal to get out of its present dire situation because to do so would mean a radical reversal of political direction that would involve a repudiation of all that New Labour has supposedly stood for over the past decade. To change direction now would severely undermine the last 11 years and show them for the shameless and self seeking party they are. So like the headless chicken who doesn’t know it is dead, New Labour will continue to run around until it is finally cast on political scrap heap as one of the biggest political deceptions of the last century. For Conservatives and indeed for the country at large it won’t be a moment too soon.

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18 thoughts on “New Labour Is Finished… Whats Next?

  1. All depends who you speak to. All I hear in Stoke-on-Trent is that while Labour are bad, they are better than Thatcher and the Tories. The further North you go the more hatrid you get towards the Tories. Trouble is people are so peeved with Labour they are turning to the BNP and not the Tories or the Lib Dems.

    In the eyes of many all three main parties are useless, and I’ll be having a few quid on the BNP gaining at least one MP. Cameron is Thatcher-Lite in the eyes of many so they won’t vote for him. They believe the Tories don’t care about the working class. I agree.

  2. The people who say Labour are ‘better than the Tories’ would never vote for us anyway because they are so entrentched in this ‘class warrior’ crap. I know it because ive grown up with it. In the Tory party treat people as individuals not by their background, classes or categories.

    If people genuinely think Labour are better than the Tories after 10 years of reckless and decietful government, coming in on an economic boom and going out on the biggest crash in living memory… they need their head examining.

  3. Dan, I know you have your views but isn’t that image a bit OTT?

    If Labour have been so bad for so long, why did people reject the Tories so many times? And how is the introduction of the minimum wage, bank of England independence and the budget surpluses we’ve had following on from Tory economic policy?

  4. “If Labour have been so bad for so long, why did people reject the Tories so many times”

    Because Labour were seen as the lesser of two evils and the economy was stable Jack. In 1997 here was a fresh faced ‘purer than pure’ government with a charismatic figure head carrying the hopes of a weary and handbagged nation on their shoulders. We believed everything they spouted.

    They seemed sensible when they said they would not ‘turn back the clock’ on Thatcherism. They looked competent when they gave control of interest rates to the Bank of England and they looked compassionate and social democratic wit their emphasis on poverty and minimum wage policy. In simple terms people saw Labour as the human face of Thatcherism.

    However it was all fairytale. Thats the thing about liars it takes a long time to suss them out and while the economy was booming, which incidently it was doing long before Labour came to power, they could get away with murder and claim credit for it. Indeed most people were ‘caught by surprise’ when the incoming Labour made the BoE ‘operationally independent’.

    However they should not have been so suprised since having an established independent central bank was a requirement of euro Membership anyway! Therefore since Labour and the Conservatives were committed to keeping their options open on euro Membership they would both have wanted to make the Bank of England independent at this point so Labour merely hastened a project that was already in the pipeline.

    Jack you accuse me of looking at the Tory economic record through rose tinted glasses however I believe you are equally as guilty wen it comes to Labour. It was a wave ‘against’ Thatcherism that brought New Labour to office in 1997 and in response the new government did indeed introduce some mild measures to counter the worst poverty that had emmerged as a result of the Thatcher years. However the combination of slow average household expenditure growth and increased inequality we have seen in the last ten years has had the effect of countering these measures. At no point during Brown’s spell as chancellor has a serious dent been made in the poverty figures due to his over zealous pursuit of Thatcherite economics.

    One figure that even normally sycophantic media commentators have been unable to ignore is the numbers of children in poverty. This rose recently by 200,000, after falling a little (by just a sixth) between 1996-7 and 2004-5. Less commented on is that the proportion of working age non-parents in poverty has risen to a level above that of 1996-7. Therefore while reducing poverty is claimed as one of New Labour’s great achievements and the other is that it has avoided a recession, we can now see that both claims are bollocks.

    ALL Labour governments leave the economy in a worse state than when they found it Jack. This ‘New’ Labour government will be no different. But in the eyes of some Tories they were the best we could have hoped for in a ‘Labour’ government and that isnt saying much

    A final thought you say:

    “I know you have your views but isn’t that image a bit OTT?”

    Well considering New Labours record including dentention without charge, cash for honours, complicity in torture, illegal war record, spin and sleaze, control freakery, nany statism, big brother camperas on every corner, proposed policies for DNA databases and ID cards against the advice of the experts… and oh yes… the arrest of legitimate opposition MP’s on ‘anti-terror’ grounds. So no Jack I don’t think it is over the top. I think it is an accurate reflection of the most authoritarian government weve ever had. One with a sheer contempt for civil liberties.

  5. “However they should not have been so suprised since having an established independent central bank was a requirement of euro Membership anyway!”

    So bank of England independence in 1997 was a prerequisite for joining the euro when exactly? 2013? As for it ‘being in the pipeline’, it had been ‘in the pipeline’ for decades but amazingly your lot never got round to it over those 18 years. John Major’s belief that interest rates should be affected by short-term political considerations was just one of many factors that blocked that reform.

    “ALL Labour governments leave the economy in a worse state than when they found it Jack.” You see this is one of the things that makes it so boring. You talk about things that you know practically nothing about. There have been roughly 9 budget surpluses since the war, 6 of them were under labour.

    Are you talking about the illegal war that the Tories supported or is this a different war that only exists in your fantasy world? As for Damian Green, the decision was made by the CPS to arrest him for leaking confidential information. It was not a case of the government wanting to have him arrested. And what’s wrong with CCTV cameras on every corner?

  6. Read this Jack:

    http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/economics/article5937106.ece

    Im taking no economic lessons from the Labour party.
    Although I am dying to know where you got your figures that you keep spouting from as almost every publication I read suggests a common consensus that up until the arrival of New Labour (aka Blue Labour) the Conservatives were seen as the guardians of the economic strength of the nation. Was this all a figment of peoples imagination?

    In regard to our support for ‘the illegal war’ Jack, forgive us for believing a government which was supposed to have the nations interests at heart. That is what a good opposition does you see; It believes and backs the government of the day when we are told our national security is at stake. You put petty opposition politics aside when you are told that we face a potential threat. We were not privvy to the same kind of information the government were and thus had to believe them. But you are right… we should have seen straight through the decietful b******s.

  7. that is an outrageous picture you have on this blog. how closely linked are nazism and new labour? If you had a bit of intelligence the answer would be ‘not very’ so if you come to that conclusion you should probably take that down. don’t embarrass yourself.

  8. I love it how he chooses to focus on the picture rather than the implication in this blog that New Labour is finished. Perhaps dear Tom feels he can’t defend his beloved party and in his heart of hearts knows its finished. And no Tom the picture will remain as a, perhaps exaggerated, reminder of just what an authoritarian government we have in New Labour and what could happen if they get another wretched term.

  9. What is one sick joke is just what Labour have done in the last ten years: inequality at record levels (even higher than your antichrist Thatcher) unemployment set to top Thatchers ‘record’ of 3 million, an illegal war which has cost hundreds if not thousands of lives, public faith in politicians at record lows, the honours of the land being flogged to the highest bidder, detention without charge,pension funds raided, plans for DNA databases and ID cards against the advice of the experts… and that is just the tip of the iceburg.

  10. And Tom yes I do study political science at the University and I do hope you recall our ‘New Labour’ lecture with Peter Kerr and the venom that was spouted against New Labour’s record by almost everyone in the room. You’d struggle to find more than a handful of people on our course who believe Labour have done well… even people who would once have classed themselves as Labour supporters have lost faith. Isn’t blind loyalty a marvellous thing tom?

  11. “The people who say Labour are ‘better than the Tories’ would never vote for us anyway because they are so entrentched in this ‘class warrior’ crap. I know it because ive grown up with it. In the Tory party treat people as individuals not by their background, classes or categories.

    If people genuinely think Labour are better than the Tories after 10 years of reckless and decietful government, coming in on an economic boom and going out on the biggest crash in living memory… they need their head examining.”

    I think you’ve just insulted the entire of the North of England with that comment. In Stoke, the Tories are that popular they are the 6th biggest party on the local council and one of their councillors is the most hated man in Stoke-on-Trent!

    The Tories have always been about the middle and upper classes and to try and say otherwise is a joke.

  12. Blind loyalty…blimey…you really don’t know me at all do you Dan?

    I doubt I could find anyone who genuinely believe that New Labour is close to nazism, which is my main concern here in these comments.

    You have put up an outrageous picture which you refuse to take down. If you were a human you would take it down but fair enough you haven’t. Now please, list the reasons you think New Labour resembles nazism which as the picture suggests it does. If you can’t then take it down and admit your political ignorance.

  13. Tom do you know where I got this picture from? I typed in New Labour in to the google search engine and it came up on the first page of the images section. I didnt really think too much about which picture I selected tbh.

    Im sorry but I do see where some people would feel this way about a government that attempts to detain us without charge, store our DNA on databases, keep tabs on us by monitoring our social network sites such as facebook and refuse to honour the freedom of information act which THEY initiated shows they have a clear contempt for personal freedom and civil liberty not quite on a par with Nazisim but setting a dangerous precedent.

    Im not saying theyre murderers or Nazis but I, and others, do think they are authoritarian and oppressive. This government is rotten to the core and the picture is meant to reflect something that is not of my own creation but is meant to be ‘shocking’ in order to provoke thought about Labours oppressive nature and what it could lead to if we don’t get rid of them. But you are right in one sense; I despise the Nazis who committed sub human acts and so yes I shall take the picture down on those grounds.

  14. i didn’t have you down for a top class-analyst. I think you’ll find the work of John Goldthorpe very useful in determining the extent of class divisions. It’s not the simple three class system you lot wish it is, because that accomodates your belief in social mobility too easily.

    Social mobility is good, obviously, but you’re not exactly working class one day and middle class the next, as Goldthorpe will demonstrate. Anyway, check him out.

  15. Considering how vague Dan’s comments are it’s hard to make a clear response. He referred to a newspaper article because he doesn’t have the ability to quote the facts himself. The last time he tried, he made no adjustment for inflation. (!)

    He might be interested to see that even that article concedes that publ;ic sector net debt is lower now than in 1997.

    “…the Conservatives were seen as the guardians of the economic strength…”

    Ahh, I see. Unable to defend that record you try to defend your position by quoting ‘public opinion’. If you can defend the Tories in this way, then why do you reject ‘public opinion’ which hasn’t given your party power for 17 years? As usual, you’re trying to have it both ways. As far as you’re concerned if the public trust Labour, they’ve all been conned. And if they trust your party it suggests that the Tories knew what they were doing with the economy.

    Howabout we debate the facts instead of the findings of polls and focus groups?

    Even more inconsistent is your approach to Thatcherism (what ever that is). You keep trying to suggest that on the one hand Labour followed a Thatcherite approach and on the other hand that things would have been ok with the Tories in power. I’m sorry but those arguments are almost mutually exclusive. It’s the David Cameron approach to pensions all over again: “this is awful and unfair and this wouldn’t have happened under us but btw we would have done exactly the same thing.”

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