Notes From the Margins…

Striking is good for you

  • June 26, 2011
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I’ve never been particularly impressed by Ed Miliband, and the only satisfaction I took from his election as Labour leader was seeing his appallingly arrogant brother deprived of what he clearly regarded as a fait accompli.   But Miliband versus Miliband did not suggest the widest range of democratic choices, and Ed’s  ongoing  ‘listening’ exercise hasn’t inclined me to change my mind. Virtually everything he says and does reeks of political cowardice and opportunism.

Most of the time he talks in vacuous soundbites and slogans, and appears devoid of ideals and ideas.    Now, in keeping with his predecessors, Miliband is going through the ritualistic demonstration of  ‘toughness’ toward the unions that all Labour leaders are expected to engage in.   With impeccable timing on the eve of the first day of collective industrial action in years, Miliband has announced his    plans to limit union influence over the Labour Party as part of his ‘modernisation’ programme.   Having got his job by courting the unions, Miliband is now engaging  a classic distancing tactic designed to shore up his credentials with a very different constituency.

This follows last week’s warning from Ed Balls for unions not to fall into the ‘trap’ of strike action.   So what should people do in response to the savage ‘austerity’ measures being imposed by the old Bullingdonians?   Just accept them without any protest and resistance and wait for Miliband to complete his ‘listening exercise’ that will bring the Labour Party to get into power – the same party – and quite often the same people – that supported the economic model which made this disaster possible,  the same people who have admitted that their own cuts would be “deeper than Thatcher’s” ?

No thanks.   We need something better than this, and we need something better than Miliband & Co.   Lets hope that June 30 will will be the first step towards getting rid of the Etonians – and the beginning of a new movement that will make Milibandism even more irrelevant than it already is.


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About Me

I’m a writer, campaigner and journalist.  My latest book is The Savage Frontier: The Pyrenees in History and the Imagination (New Press/Hurst, 2018).  The Infernal Machine is where I write on politics, history, cinema and other things that interest me.

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