In out, in out, turn it all about
+An old friend from the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) reminds me of Jeremy Corbyn’s record as a member of that august body. He cannot remember one occasion when Jeremy attended a meeting of the PLP in 18 years, and in my mere nine years I cannot remember such an occasion either. Let’s face it, Jeremy was very much a detached member of the PLP, tolerated by the Blairites since he didn’t head up any significant faction, or at least no faction that threatened the Blairites. Jeremy voted against the whip more often than we ate hot meals—which makes his current bid to win back the whip highly ironic. But it’s also ironic from the party hierarchy’s position, since his regular rebellions should have led to multiple expulsions. What makes the hierarchy so intolerant now? Breaking the whip could always of course be done in the safety of numbers. Nobody was disciplined when half of the PLP voted against the Iraq war.
+Further to my piece on late capitalism on Friday, there was an obituary in the Guardian for Paul Moore, the ‘HBOS whistleblower who warned against the bank’s lending policy and aggressive sales culture.’ Mr Moore died aged 61, and it seems he became a bit of a persona no gratia in the banking world after he told HBOS’s board in 2004 that their practices were unethical. Moore was their head of regulatory policy at the time. I confess I can’t recollect hearing of him until now. He doesn’t sound like the kind of person to claim ‘scalps’ but his action probably led to the HBOS Chief Executive, Sir James Crosby resigning his post as deputy chair of the Financial Services Authority and handing back his knighthood. HBOS subsequently tapped the taxpayer for £21 billion. Socialist capitalism. Moore warned the HBOS board five years before the crash where their business behaviour was leading. He was sacked. Regretably, in those pre-crash triumphal years of Labour’s economic ‘success’ we all turned a blind eye. Mea culpa.
+If what is reported in the Skwawkbox website today truly records the words of a Keir Starmer speech to a meeting of the Jewish Labour (sic) Movement (sic) then I really will have to reconsider my determination to remain a member of the party. Apparently Starmer was opening the door to welcome back those ex-Labour MPs who went off to set up their own competing party— ‘Change UK’ —on the alleged basis that they were upset about the ‘rampant’ anti-Semitism in Labour. If Starmer’s view is that they should be back in, then after 36 years I have to say I’ll be on my way out.
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