The Great Crossing 210

The logical outcome of the UK’s current political situation is for a large section of Conservative Party MP’s to defect to Keir Starmer’s well right of centre, pro-Brexit, New Labour Party.

Every now and then a number of Westminster MPs change party, to long term political effect. In 1886 The Liberal Unionists, opposed to Gladstone’s policy of Irish Home Rule, crossed the floor en masse and allied with the Conservatives. This led to Tory rule for 17 of the next 20 years, and after a while the alliance became one as the Conservative and Unionist Party.

In 1981 just four MPs, but very senior, left the Labour Party, principally in opposition to nuclear disarmament, to form the Social Democratic Party and ally with the Liberal Party. This resulted in 16 years of consecutive Tory government. Eventual merger formed the Liberal Democrats.

Tory MPs are currently in an incredible funk as they face almost certain loss of their jobs at the next general election. Keeping their job, perks and salary is the overwhelming preoccupation of almost all current MPs. Tory MPs are actively considering ditching the chaotic Truss experiment after a few weeks, and feverishly telling any passing journalist about it.

But there is a much simpler way they can keep their jobs. Cross the floor and join the Labour Party, after negotiating with Starmer that they will be accepted as the Labour candidate in their constituency at the next election.

There is no ideological obstacle. The Labour Party’s current slogan is “Make Brexit Work”. If you stood on “Get Brexit Done”, it is not a big switch.

Sam Tarry MP has just been deselected as a Labour candidate for being a little bit left wing and for disobeying Starmer’s order not to appear on an official RMT picket line.

Red Wall Brexiteer Tory MPs need not worry about losing the racist vote. Starmer’s party are more than happy to pander to anti-immigrant racism.

Here is the Labour Party’s impeccably right wing Shadow Chancellor, Rachel Reeves, calling for more deportation:

(I can’t embed that video, here is the link)

I am not aware that it is possible to be too right wing for Keir Starmer’s New Labour. I know personally a number of people who have been kicked out for being too left wing. Has anybody been kicked out for being too right wing? Serious question.

The Forde Report said there was a “Hierarchy of racism” in the Labour Party, and that while anti-semitism led to immediate expulsion, Islamophobia and prejudice against BAME people were not taken seriously enough. I can therefore see no reason why Tory MPs would feel in the least uncomfortable.

Or take the case of John McTernan. This is from the famous Leaked Report on the Labour Party:

“John McTernan, meanwhile, formerly involved in New Labour and a delegate to 2016 party conference, was repeatedly reported from 25 July onwards for abusive language on Twitter and elsewhere, including describing Labour MPs who nominated Corbyn as “morons”; tweeting twice that Corbyn was a “traitor”; describing “Corbynistas” as racist; telling an SNP MP that he should “Come down to Peckham and try saying that, mate”; calling Corbyn a “Putin-hugging, terrorist-loving, Trident-hater”; and writing in the Daily Telegraph that all of Corbyn’s supporters were “online trolls”.”

“No action was taken, and McTernan received the staff decision “No action – removed at referral”. On 18 August, however, Dan Hogan did report a member of McTernan’s CLP, Omar Baggili, who – in response to an article by McTernan in “The Telegraph” urging the Conservative government to “crush the rail unions once and for all” – tweeted at him “seriously John why haven’t you got yourself a Tory membership card. They’re anti unions & pro privatisation like you.” Baggili was suspended for “abuse”.””

In addition to writing in his Telegraph column that the Tory government should “crush the rail unions once and for all”, McTernan produced gems like this one:

Despite formal complaints, Labour HQ staff refused to take any action against McTernan’s membership for being too right wing: and that was while Corbyn was leader.

So in crossing the floor, Tory MPs safeguarding their jobs could respectably console themselves that they are not joining any kind of left wing project.

For Starmer, there would be a big attraction in accepting the Tory MPs. There is a danger that Labour candidates in some Tory seats may be residual left wingers. As Starmer’s main focus is to protect his leadership against the pro-union, pro-immigration and pro-EU elements in his party (aka the membership), a good accession of fellow right wingers from the Tory Party would be welcome to him.

It would of course be terrific publicity for the Knight of the Realm, and may hasten the general election. If he sends out signals the doors are open, he might even get enough Tory MPs coming over to destroy the Tory majority in the Commons.

Perhaps none of this will happen. Logic and politics are uncomfortable bedfellows. But I expect the term “crossing the floor” will be bandied about a fair bit by political journalists over the next six months.


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210 thoughts on “The Great Crossing

1 2
  • mark cutts

    Cor blimey – how we all got into this mess is relatively simple in my humble opinion.

    If you decide that the industrial production game is not worth a candle ( see tThatcherism for details) and that services and servicing other nation’s materiall production is then you are on a slippery slope to potential oblivion – they make you service their making.

    Therefore the only game in town becomes not industrial investment but Financial Investments which older readers will know led to the Financial Crash and everything that has happened since.

    For the life of me why the Western World though that they could get away eith a 1/2 percent LIBOR lending rate for 14 years is amazing.

    This enabled the financiers to swindle each other in share trading for years and mainly rewarded the Executives to get paid whether their companies made profit or not in any given year.

    The problem for Starmer’s current Labour Party is that all the LP currently is saying is not against the idea or actuality of self serving financial capitlalism at the expense of production is a bad thing but temporarily that the amount of profit these people make in the current economic crisis is too naked.

    Whether some Tories will cross the floor for my money is immaterial – the question for the electorate is how we all get out of this subsidising the profits of not just the energy retailers but working backwards the profits of the wholesalers – the refiners – the drillers etc who gain all the way ddown the line.

    The BBC does not like defing sources of gain and they are not going to start now with deeper analysis of the reality.

    Add to this ( and this is what really is the tin hat on top of a tin hat ) mortgage relative rates to libor rates are increasing as much as energy bills and this is why the Tories are taking a dive.

    Starmer’s Labour have not deserved this boost as it is a case of Tory economic incompetence not Labour’s brilliance but bear in mind that the US is leading the interest rate charge here and what they do because the dollar is the pivot of all currency exchange then what they do affects everything that the western world does so whatever the US does will make the world follow.

    The US and it asset holders appear to be doing OK at the moment and will press their advantage further.

    Uk interest rates are about to rise rapidy.

  • Urban Fox

    So a pro-independence, pro-union Scotsman (or indeed anyone) should cease paying taxes to this shower of bastards?

    Thanks John-boy, I’ll start working on upholding my ”basic-freedoms” right away I’m sure the HMRC will pat me on the head for my civic virtue…

  • Mark Golding

    Starmer, the anti charisma, the deep state portcullis, the ruthless controller WILL be PM. The orders are already in the safe. A police state run by ‘administrators’ in every district that will monitor dissent and execute the null. This is the blueprint Starmer will enforce. It is real and the dungeon has open doors, the moat has poisoned water and hear ye the town cryers will be given their words…

    • Bayard

      Bringing that old “Not the Nine o’Clock News” song up to date,

      “Labour’s Sir Keir Rodney Starmer,
      Could he be a great dictator?”

  • Brian c

    There has already been a very important but entirely unpublicised crossing of the floor this year by ex-Tory donor John Armitage.

    Armitage is a billionaire hedge fund boss with a significant interest in completing the privatisation of the NHS through the US corporation United Health.

    He previously gave £3.1m to the Conservative Party. But in January this year Armitage switched to Labour – handing £15k to shadow health Secretary Wes Streeting, then £12.5k to Starmer in July. Since then Streeting has published a glut of pieces claiming the private sector is needed to help “reform” the NHS.

    The Conservatves, Starmer and Armitage have agreed that there will be greater public acceptance of the NHS being fully handed over to the vultures if the government of the day calls itself Labour.

    • Stevie Boy

      The NHS reduced to a money gobbling, basket case during the Tories current Reich by none other than Jeremy *unt. Now back to screw over the economy for Mary U-Turn.
      Let’s hope Mary and her pals are soon history, otherwise it will be the UK that is history.

        • Stevie Boy

          No !!! Where did I say or infer that ?
          When labour conspired to get rid of Corbyn, the NHS and Socialism were doomed.
          IMO – Like Monty Python’s Black Night, there is now no way to save the NHS. It’s enemies now infest it like a cancer.

        • Brian c

          “I don’t think Hunt was too bad at the NHS”

          Interesting take. No doubt you’ll think his austerity regime of coming years isn’t too bad either.

        • Roger

          Jimmeh is right. Not enough money was allocated to the NHS while JH was Health Secretary, but allocation of money among ministries is not determined by the Health Secretary, it’s determined by the PM and the cabinet, constrained by the Treasury.

          The things that were under his control – tackling the secrecy culture, the suppression of whistleblowers, he systemic failure to learn from mistakes – he understood and made some attempt to improve. He took a bad rap for Tory funding priority – that was out of his control.

          The Tory government as a whole thinks it’s more important to increase military expenditure by 50% and prolong a war that might lead to WW3 than to pay nurses and physicians properly. The Health Secretary is just one voice in Cabinet, out of 30. He deserves one-thirtieth of the blame for misallocation of resources.

  • john

    Veteran Indian diplomat MK Bhadrakumar in today’s piece “The Wasteland of British Politics”, argues the obvious but politically unmentionable solution to this whole mess:

    “The right thing to do is for the next UK prime minister to visit Washington without delay and prevail upon President Biden to end this senseless war in Ukraine and lift the sanctions against Russia, which bled the economies of the UK and other European allies. The heart of the matter is that Europe’s prosperity was built on the availability of cheap, reliable, energy supplies from Russia in huge volumes.”

    • Stevie Boy

      I believe the correct protocol of the ‘special relationship’ is that the UK Prime Minister must wait to be summoned to Washington, where orders will be issued by the current actor pretending to be in charge.

    • Deb O'Nair

      It makes no difference the party nor face of the next prime minister, they will always be NATO puppets by American design. Britain’s US dominated political/media machine is the problem, as it is for many European states.

    • Bramble

      Yes, if only, but Mr Bhadrakumar is ignoring the fact that crushing Europe was in fact a key aim of the proxy war on Russia. The UK has no power at all in the relationship with Washington and must do as it is told (having been crushed some time ago).

    • Squeeth

      Does he think that American Caesar will listen? Britain should opt out of Nato, do a deal with the RF and kiss the arses of the rulers of the PRC instead.

      • MrShigemitsu

        That wouldn’t help. The U.K. was getting less than 4% of its gas from Russia. How would Russia even supply the U.K. if the rest of Europe wasn’t also on board with ending sanctions?

        The pressure on U.K. energy prices is because, AFAIK, all U.K. North Sea gas is sold in the open market, not reserved for the U.K. – so the lack of Russian gas in Europe due to sanctions means that we are now in a bidding war with European countries for our own gas! Much of which is also used for electricity generation.

      • Roger

        Opting out of NATO (i.e. out of the American Empire) would be a good move in itself. The rulers of the PRC, unlike the rulers of the USA, aren’t asking anyone to kiss their arses.

        Europe is perfectly capable of defending itself without American “help”. The people telling us that Russia is a threat to Western Europe are the same people who are telling us that Russia cannot even win a war against Ukraine (population: about half that of France, GDP: less than Greece’s). You don’t need to refute their arguments – they do that themselves.

        How many countries has the USA bombed/invaded over the last 50 years? How many civilians has it killed? How many weddings has it destroyed by blowing up the ceremony while it was in progress? The answer to all these questions is “far too many”. We should not be allied with these gangsters and we should get rid of all US bases in Britain. The PRC isn’t interested in building military bases in Britain, why should we let anyone do it?

  • Brian c

    Craig, re “pro-EU elements in his party” it was these antidemocrats who elected Starmer leader by a huge majority, thereby ending meaningful democracy in Britain. If you are ever looking for somebody to blame .. blame them.

    Many of these “pro-immigration and pro-EU elements” still lionize Starmer today in the face of everything he has done since they elected him. For them he is just a vibe, a culturally relatable liberal icon. They ignore his actual policies and beliefs, just as they do with the EU itself. This element spent years arguing for the EU and free migration while ignorant of what actual EU officials felt about migration. The EU’s real attitude was on vivid display again yesterday in a speech by its High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell:

    “Europe is a garden. Most of the rest of the world a jungle. The jungle could invade the garden. The Jungle has a strong growth capacity.”

    For the “pro-immigration and pro-EU elements” it doesn’t matter what Starmer or the EU’s bigwigs say or do, they’ll continue to represent them as the summit of political wisdom, decency and respectability.

    • mark cutts

      Wouldn’t disagree with most of what you say but Starmer’s cunning plan is to win many Tory voters away from the Tories.

      This is why the Labour Party is mimicking a lot of Tory policies.

      The truth is the current Labour Party has not earned their lead by progressive policies (they don’t have any) but the Tories utter incompetence and dogma has passed the ball to the centrists (centre-right these days) and I’m pretty much convinced that the last thing the Labour Party wants is a GE.

      They have no funds, they have no canvassers and – worse for Starmer – no big private backers, though that may change in the current crisis,

      My country right-or-wrong stuff and the attempted out-patriotising of the Tories will only go so far but even Keynsian reflation is akin to Communism nowadays, so expect no fireworks from Starmer.

      However I can envision a government of centre / centre-right so as to not spook the blessed markets further.

      But even that would make the old SDP look like a bunch of Trots.

      I have voted Labour since I was 18, and even voted 3 times for Blair and will vote Labour again, but a chance arose with Corbyn as the leader – but the centrists chose to back Johnson and his Brexit over Labour’s Soft Brexit, and here we are.

      Whatever happens electorally the BOE will follow the US in raising interest rates and the UK government of any stripe will continue to susbsidise the energy producers/drillers/wholesalers’ and retailers’ profits for years to come.

      Meanwhile the War effort will continue and the price for that will continue to be paid for as long as the EU and the British electorate tolerate it.

      This is all for the long haul, I think.

      • Brian c

        “the centrists chose to back Johnson and his Brexit over Labour’s Soft Brexit, and here we are”

        Yes, effectively that’s what the People’s Vote brigade did. They didn’t explicitly say they wanted a hard Brexit but by scorning the only alternative when it could have been voted through Parliament that’s where they have landed us. More than that, by saddling Corbyn with a disastrously antidemocratic 2nd referendum policy they ensured defeat of a fleeting alternative to a savagely unequal status quo.

      • DiggerUK

        There was no plan for a soft Brexit in the Labour Party. The Peoples Vote Brigade was a poorly disguised attempt to overturn the Brexit result. It cost Labour the election.

        Those attending hustings meetings for the election of a Corbyn replacement could barely disguise their desire for a ‘get us back in the EU’ replacement. None of the contenders even hinted that they supported the referendum result. They just treated it as a fact, albeit a very inconvenient fact.

        It was exactly the same in the local party meeting where our choices were discussed. The Labour Party still retains a majority of members who would be back inside the EU in a flash.

        So don’t get befuddled by the current party leadership claiming dying support for the referendum result. And don’t believe the SNP, Greens, LibDems and Labour wouldn’t form an unholy alliance to ‘Get Brexit Suffed’.

        After that, who knows what kind of dystopian nightmare is coming our way…_

        • Bayard

          “It cost Labour the election.”

          The secret weapon of the Tory Party is loyalty. This meant that Tory Remainers voted Tory not Remain and Labour Leavers voted for Brexit, i.e. also Tory, not Labour.

      • Squeeth

        Kinnock was the first Liarbourfuhrer to decide not to be outflanked on the right, rather than to outflank the Tories (Officials) on the left, a policy eschewed since 1922.

  • Jayhawk

    I agree with you Craig about Starmer. However it seems to be that Reeves is simply saying the deportation system is not working at all and that if people are found to be illegal (at the moment not a huge number, most boats contain genuine cases) they should actually be deported rather than be used as pawns in the culture war. The real issue is the need to establish safe routes for asylum seekers

    • Stevie Boy

      Britain’s immediate borders are with France, Germany, Scandinavia and Iceland. I believe that there are NO asylum seekers/illegal immigrants who are from and citizens of these countries ? Britain is therefore, IMO, being used as a dumping ground by these countries who facilitate their illegal passage into Britain.
      The problem and the villain is the EU. We still have to foot the bill for Brussels corruption. This tory version of brexit is working so well.

  • BrianFujisan

    Happy Birthday to Craig…And Myself.. 60 today Yikes.. Started well when a beautiful Fireball passed at 6:06 am. Coming from The Twins in Gemini to beyond the upper Left of Orion.
    I call my Birthday Fireball..

    • Angela Wooldridge

      Looks as if her twitter account has been suspended this is what she wrote..

      “I am devastated that the Labour Party has blocked me from standing to once again represent my community in Parliament, the community I have spent the last 20 years of my life fighting for. At the same time, I am angry that local members and our local community in Kensington have been denied the opportunity to vote in a free and fair contest, which has been sacrificed for the sake of factional intrigue from Labour officials.

      This campaign has never been about me. I stood to offer dedicated representation for the people of Kensington in Parliament, from someone who knows and cares for our communities. From my role as a local councillor and Labour Group leader, to my campaigning efforts as Kensington’s MP on housing issues so dear to our hearts, I have only ever sought the chance to champion our people, whose voices all too often go unheard.

      If I have been outspoken in my politics, it is due to my passion and care for Kensington – for my neighbours and friends – and because of my burning desire to stamp out injustice and build a fairer, more equal society. Upsettingly, unaccountable Labour officials have exploited this outspokenness to unjustly prevent me from standing for the seat I won just five years ago, the seat I came agonisingly close to holding even in 2019, despite the trade union backing which should have seen me longlisted automatically. It is plain as day that the candidate selection process now being run by the Party is being factionally abused and is not fit for purpose.

      I deplore injustice, and through my 16 years on the Council, various reports and my recent book, ‘One Kensington’ I have done my utmost not only to draw attention to the very real inequalities in our community but to actively fight it, from the council chamber to the House of Commons. Above all, my driving ambition has been to combat the inequality which scars our community, the systematic disregard for working-class people which led to the atrocity of the Grenfell Tower fire, and which has led many to lose faith with the political process.

      These people deserve and need representation in Parliament. I hope that Labour’s eventual candidate will gain the respect and trust of all communities in Kensington. It won’t be easy.



      • Angela Wooldridge

        And John McDonnell said…

        “This is one of the most disgraceful acts I have witnessed in the 50 years I have been a member of the Labour Party. Emma was a wonderful local MP standing up for, supporting and comforting her constituents in the face of Grenfell. Labour’s NEC must reverse this decision.”

        • Angela Wooldridge

          I don’t know why her twitter account was suspended. It was active when I first wrote about Emma being blocked as standing for MP for Kensington.

      • SameGreatApe

        She says “the systematic disregard for working-class people which led to the atrocity of the Grenfell Tower fire”

        But per The Guardian among the victims

        “There was an Afghan army officer, a Sudanese dressmaker, a British artist and an Italian architect. There was an Egyptian hairdresser, an Eritrean waitress and a Lebanese soldier. There were taxi drivers and teachers, football fans and churchgoers, devout Muslims, big families and working singletons. People whose lives were complicated by health issues or love or both.”

          • SameGreatApe

            Do you accept that seems to partly contradict the Labour politicians claim of causation? If so what is the full underlying cause?

        • Bayard

          Your argument is a non-sequitur. The victims don’t have to be working class for one of the causes of the disaster to be “the systematic disregard for working-class people”. Grenfell Tower was social housing. Social housing is, in most people’s mind, housing for the working class, therefore Grenfell Tower was regarded as working class housing regardless of who actually lived there. If the Tower had been sold to developers and the flats sold to rich city workers and had then burnt, the causes of the fire wouldn’t have changed.

        • Johnny Conspiranoid

          “There was an Afghan army officer, a Sudanese dressmaker, a British artist and an Italian architect. There was an Egyptian hairdresser, an Eritrean waitress and a Lebanese soldier. There were taxi drivers and teachers, football fans and churchgoers, devout Muslims, big families and working singletons. People whose lives were complicated by health issues or love or both.”
          Sounds like the working class to me.

          • Geoffrey

            I don’t think that is what they would call themselves. They mostly sound educated middle class, looking for a better life.

      • Johnny Conspiranoid

        Looks like Labour are getting rid of any MPs who would stand in the way of their neo-liberal policies after the election which will soon come thanks to the engineered self destruction of the Tory Party. But you have to be a conspiracy theorist to talk about that.

  • john

    I read today in RT that Tulsi Gabbard, in that other uni-party state accross the pond, is calling for Democrats to make a Great Crossing”.

    Seems to be a trend?

    “Former US congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard has called on Democrats to leave the party, which she said is controlled by “woke, fanatical ideologues.” Gabbard herself left last week, calling the leaders “an elitist cabal of warmongers.””

    • U Watt

      Tulsi is a lieutenant-colonel in the 351st Civil Affairs Command, a US Army PSYOP unit. So as genuine and trustworthy an opponent of war and US empire as it’s possible to conceive.

      You don’t need to be told the US Republican Party is not one of the world’s leading antiwar organisations. So what has attracted Tulsi? You sensibly omit the sentence where she expresses her revulsion at the Democratic Party’s “anti-white racism”.

      • Roger

        People who have seen the military from the inside can sometimes be among its best-informed critics. (Another example is Miko Peled, son of an Israeli general and one of the most effective critics of current Israeli actions in Palestine.) She’s absolutely right that the Democrat party is controlled by warmongers, and that is probably the most serious political problem in the world today. It could lead us into WW3.

        Tulsi Gabbard has not joined the Republican Party. She left the Democrats to become an independent.

        The “woke” movement in the US is nothing like an anti-racist movement anywhere else. Smearing Tulsi Gabbard as some kind of racist is like calling Jeremy Corbyn “anti-semitic”.

          • Bayard

            “The whole Tulsi Gabbard phenomenon is just beyond ridiculous.”

            Is there any particle of US politics that isn’t?

    • elkern

      As a USAmerican Green, I was more intrigued than bothered by Tulsi Gabbard’s choice to leave the Democratic Party. I appreciate her relatively independent and “Realist” perspective on US Foreign Policy, and liked the fact that she backed Bernie Sanders in the 2016 Primaries. But her statement explaining her reasons for leaving (see link in Comment (above? by U Watt October 18, 2022 at 04:44) reads like it was copy/pasted from standard Trumpist/Right-Wing boilerplate Culture-War hate-monger drivel.

      There are good reasons for leaving the Democratic Party, and its choice of Borgist Foreign Policy is among the best of those reasons. But Gabbard’s statement reads more like an attempt to ingratiate herself with the Trumpist Right than any attempt to steer the USA away from blowing up the world to save it from the SCO.

    • glenn_nl

      Tulsi Gabbard has been working both sides of the street since she lost the nomination.

      She’s obviously decided that running on the ‘Democrat who’s party has left _her_’ angle works really well, as it has for a few others before her.

      Going from a presidential nominee to someone who is willing to diss the Dems on some Fox ‘news’ programme can be incredibly lucrative – we’re talking lottery winner money here for hosts, on an annual basis. (White supremacist Tucker Carlson, Hannety et al get tens of $Millions/ year.) Just being an occasional host/ guest makes one rich. Probably get a very good book deal or three out of it too – wonder if Murdoch could find her a sympathetic publishing house?

      There’s no surprise here at all.

  • Wally Jumblatt

    The logical outcome of the UK’s present political situation is the destruction of the main parties, and the election of lots of competent, committed independent MPs, MEPs and MSPs.

    There is barely any member or sympathiser of Tory, Labour, LibDem or SNP who believe their party controllers share the same dreams and ambitions as them. And it’s getting worse.

    The sooner even single-issue candidates get on the ballot, the better.
    We need more doctors, engineers, even accountants, in parliament.
    We need fewer lawyers and even fewer PPE graduates.

    We need a primary system for elections -whereby anyone standing who didn’t have (say) more than 15% of the vote last time round, has to go into a run-off for the minor candidates (to avoid splitting the dissenting vote) and the winner or winners go into the the ballot against the big guys (if they re standing again).

    The entire system is now run by the corporate parties, and no outsider can have any influence any more.
    We need to dismantle it; we all know that if we don’t, they’ll eventually decide we don’t need elections.

    • Stevie Boy

      The Party system seems to me to be the main cause of the problem. Politicians join their little clubs/parties and that ultimately is where their loyalties lie, maintaining power for their party is the number one, and only, objective. The country and the people are never considered, apart from election time when the faux promises are wheeled out for the gullible masses – 40 new hospitals, 40,000 new nurses, ra, ra, ra….
      The UK needs to be ‘managed’ by proven competent people with relevant experience for each role. We need to be voting for the right people to fill the required roles. As any competent company would. As far as I can see it, the majority of politicians, outside government, serve absolutely no purpose whatsoever – apart from their own !
      Get rid of parties, implement PR and hold referendums on every major issue – and turn Westminster into the museum that it really is. We need a modern government infrastructure, in a modern building, using modern technology.
      We the people deserve better.

      • Coldish

        Stevie Boy: PR is usually taken to mean the distribution of seats in a legislature according to the percentage of votes cast for every party. You still have party groupings – or slates – in the legislature, although the parties elected tend to be smaller the lower the threshold required.

    • nevermind

      well said Wally, absolutely agree. I would like politics to reflect pressing issues from their constituencies. As far as one could wish for normality, anybody pulled out of a pool of NI numbers within a constituency, any profession has got to be a better choice than any party politician hanging on corporate strings.
      Engaging in a new Parliament, were sitting is in the round, people would organise in groups that reflect the most pressing issues at hand. for example, the cost of living crisis or whats to be done to limit and live with climate change, decentralization of power with more ACCOUNTABLE control locally, it would make for a breath of fresh air. The adversary nature of ancient establishment poisoned political parties is long overdue for a more modern chrysalis, a completely open new structure that can be changed, representatives that can be exchanged on a yearly basis, should we so wish, a recall system that allows weak or bad representatives to be recalled, an automatic gender balance that chooses either a male of female representative, depending on which set of NI numbers are pulled from.
      No more right to re selection bar the random choice, making for an awesome control of corrupt influences by design.
      What we are being objected to at present is wilful ecocide and criminally uncontrolled mongering by people who have forgotten their principles for monetary gain and false accolades.
      Many happy returns to Craig and Brian.

    • Squeeth

      More middle-class MPs? What we need is a democratic electoral system for the first time in British history; it isn’t enough but it’s a start.

  • Crispa

    No floor crossing in the eyes of one Russian commentator. “Britain is Planning a Military Coup” with Ben Wallace Minister of War as the PM who will be given sweeping emergency powers to crush us all.
    “In the smoky corridors of the British authorities (they) have already realized the impossibility of preventing the impending social catastrophe and are making plans for an actual military coup. But will the emergency powers of any of Liz Truss’s possible successors warm millions of hungry and cold Britons if there is no Russian gas? ” he concludes.

  • Willie

    For me there is no difference between Labour and the Tories. Starmer is as right wing and is as beholden to the corporate financial elites as Johnson was.

    Under Blair, and Brown. there was, albeit not as obvious, as much privatisation as under Thatcher. Moreover, both Labour and Tories have continued with the destruction of the industrial base. Pursuing riches through black financial magic has been the game.

    But now that game, that magic unravels. Britain and the US have lost their trade and technology supremacy retaining only their perceived financial supremacy.

    But financial supremacy does not deliver a fully functioning society. Production of everything from steel to ships, from cobalt to computers, from tungsten to trains, to computer chips, to in fact all things industrial is the key. Money is an illusion, you cannot eat it, travel on it, live on it
    But with production of food, goods and services you can.

    Maybe I am stating the obvious but in the last remaining area of supremacy the West may have committed suicide through the implementation of their all out sanctions war.

    These sanctions are wreaking havoc on the Western economies wrecking the West’s financial infrastructure and the current chaos in Britain most certainly seems to be testimony to that.

    Moreover, with sanctions now into their eight or ninth iteration, it is clear with every increase in sanction that they are not working as initially envisaged, and sanctions are running out of road. The east, China, Russia, Iran are not collapsing, and countries like India, Saudi Arabia and more are realigning.

    And in realigning, these resource rich and industrial endowed countries are putting into place alternative financial structures that by pass what the West thought they had supremacy of.

    The exclusion therefore of countries from the financial exchange and settlement system SWIFT is I think a clear example as to how the sanction war is turning into an own goal because now there is a fully functioning alternative. There is to put not a too fine a point on it a functioning world out there, and a world that is realigning not reliant on the West’s financial wizardry.

    Money is illusory, production is not, and without production we are mought.

    This I think is the lesson we in Britain are now learning. Bullshit baffles brains, that is if we have brains. But look around. Do you see a successful UK, increasing living standards, first class social support, industrially endowed. I don’t. I see the exact opposite.

    But who am I to say. People see things differently. Maybe our star is on the way up and not down.

    • Squeeth

      The boss class will be wounded by a defeat in Ukraine far more than the scuttle from Afghanistan. Sanctions mean nothing to them because they have been insulated from the consequences of their actions by the last fifty years of intensified class war. The Natostan boss class is part of a community of fate, to be determined by the results of the Russia-Nato War.

  • frankywiggles

    Johnny Mercer is apparently the next Tory MP that Labour are going to welcome with open arms. Mercer is best known for helping British soldier Dennis Hutchings evade justice for killing a mentally disabled Irishman, John Pat Cunningham. John Pat was shot in the back by Hutchings when he was running away. Further evidence of Sir Keir’s fundamental decency.

  • nevermind

    All of our ecocidal Conservatives are now taking the mickey. At first they throw brown matter at the fan (markets) and, now that hey have mainly covered themselves with their own muck, they think they can ruin the next few years with a mandate given by 0.3%of the electorate, well, more like 0.15%.
    They voted for another persuasive narcissist and she does not want to be accountable to voters, ideally she would like to go to war and put elections on ice.
    If this continous to fester and the US warhawks pulling her strings are deciding to get NATO troops involved, then this should be the starting gun for us to have our say and action.
    It is a disgraceful ignorance which we should reciprocate with united civil disobedience, everywhere, not all together, for easy policing, in London, but everywhere, day and night.
    Time to wake up to this stealing of our mandated democracy.

    • DiggerUK

      “Time to wake up to this stealing of our mandated democracy”

      There are military coups and there are revolutionary takeovers. But it seems that we have a coup led by the financial masters of the markets from their City wine bars.

      Generalissimo Hunt waves his calculator in the air and Quisling Truss hands over the keys!
      I’d better Uber some more popcorn…_

    • DunGroanin

      Indeed Nevermind.

      We had a coup in the U.K. run by the US and up-Pompeo said it loud and proud, months before it happened- there would be a GAUNTLET to stop the legitimate choice of the people.

      It really happened. It was a coup. We accept that and think it great! Someone turned our brains to mush with some weird brainwashing – I can’t say what.

      We are living in the planned-for reimagining of us in the Collective Waste now.
      The fascist reprogramming of us Western European ‘nice’ people is underway.
      We now hate a whole country, a whole People and their Language and Cultural invention of centuries and are told that is a natural progression of us being told to hate a Single Person, representing that Country and its Peoples.

      It’s only a matter of time – weeks and months before we start hating ourselves and being salami-sliced to hate our neighbours and fellow countrymen under some old racist certitudes.

      E.g. 1, a tweet going round showing happy London school kids from a largely ethnic area in effect saying there are no white people in it, so Britain is invaded – pure dog-whistling.

      E.g.2 Borrell saying that Europe is a garden (the ONLY legitimate civilisation) and the rest of the World is a Jungle that requires European Gardeners to keep that jungle out and pacified!

      Not a single Hunt of a politician or Media whore said anything at that gobsmacking-in-the-face racist comment! Including the supposed ‘non-white’ ones.

      As any one not a fool would know – Borrell and the unelected bourgeoisie of Europe, the old aristo types, landed gentry, ‘natural leaders’ are such dangerous fools – ‘JUNGLE’ is actually a subcontinental INDIAN word!

      Appropriated as usual by the global robber barons and it’s corrupting imperialism.

      Sound the ‘ALARM’ (yup another one!).

      Thank goodness the anti-corruption forces of the anti-imperialist, new multipolar world are winning, faster daily, and we shall be set free from our fascist coup state and its blinkered echo-chamber house slaves. Free from our deluded cultural primacy. Free from the supposed freedom to choose whichever brand of washing powder, fast food and whatever junk that needs to be forced down our throats in the name of not just profit but thought control by the putrid Hegemony.

      Time to put on the first piano concerto and enjoy real culture.

      • Stevie Boy

        Please make sure that the music you listen to has been approved, none of that foreign muck. British music for British people, you know it makes sense …

    • Goose

      Sturgeon is saying an immediate general election should be called, claiming it’s a democratic imperative.

      That may be the case, morally, but it’s a strange position for the SNP to take. As were that to happen and were Labour to win a majority, as seems likely given the Tory implosion, Labour would potentially be in until 2027, if they lasted a full five year term.
      How does that impact, not only the second referendum scheduled for October 19, 2023, but more importantly Sturgeon’s claim the general election held after that , would be used as a ‘de facto indyref’? Presently, 2024 is the likely GE year, which aligns with an October 19 vote (if it happens?). But a general election now makes no sense from the SNP’s perspective, if they’re serious? For who’ll remember the vote held in Oct 2023 in 2027?

      • Pigeon English

        Very good perspective.
        If I am not mistaken SNP should keep most useless government in up to a referendum.
        I wish you were a Journalist asking hard Questions!!

        • Pigeon English

          No one asked Starmer any hard questions about addressing all the crises just if he is ready to form a government.
          To repeat again, mortgages are connected directly or indirectly to the BoE base rate which is based or influenced by Inflation! It is a circus, and bubble-thinking following prevailing dogma.

      • nevermind

        She is asking for a GE now because it would make the SNP the second largest party at Westmonster.
        The ball of Independence can always be kicked into the long grass, replaced with sabre rattling, flummery and rigmarole.
        The imagination of grandeur will/can demand any position within a coalition Government, further distancing Scotland from Independence.

        She will dance to any tunes that come from this chaos, but nothing on the ground will be achieved.
        The long awaited report into child abuse in many institutions, cities and towns, was pushed to ‘further mentioned’: over 300 pages and evidence of ingrained institutional acceptance, ignorance and collusion for decades was sideswiped by the resignation of Mary and the scared gatekeeper chaterati wanting to headline chaos and incompetence.
        Those who sat on their hands, actually colluded, and sideswiped child abuse of the worst kind, should be investigated, prosecuted and punished. Examples have to be set to make it clear it’s not acceptable.
        If this does not happen, nothing will ever change, and institutions will further ignore and deflect it.

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