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Gus Mears

General Erection 2019

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2 minutes ago, Cod Eye said:

I'd be very, very surprised in they had the bollocks to even attempt to fully privatise the NHS in one go like that. It's more likelly that they contract out individual services a bit at a time to private companies(as they do now, with mental health being a prime example), but the services being free at use. Of course, this could(probably would) lead to a future government saying that what is left of it is simply a shell, so they might as well fuck it all off and go with an American system, but I wouldn't think that would be in the next few decades at least...

Everything has a cost (we don't get the drugs for free, they're paid for by the NHS).  One of the worries is  renegotiating trade deals for medicines whilst we're in a fairly weak position (those Corbyn leaked NHS documents the other week showed the US treating us fairly small potatoey) means that the cost goes up. This means some medications are less likely to be offered. This happens anyway within the NHS, when my Dad had cancer he was given palliative drugs that certainly helped quality of life but weren't going to fix him, those drugs stopped being offered I think around 2016ish as they were considered too expensive for the benefit..

So as others have said it doesn't mean the NHS stops existing as much as what is actually offered on the NHS.

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Yeah - I'm from just outside of Hull myself, and have seen plenty of that side of things. My brother coaches a youth football team, they've taken on a Syrian refugee kid, and the abuse they get is appalling. The question remains, no matter how thankless it may seem, how we reach those people rather than alienating them. 

Some of the problem is Labour becoming too London-centric/middle class. Some of it is the perception of them having abandoned "the working class" for minority movements - which is why I think there needs to be a frank, difficult conversation about what we mean by "working class". We allow it to be used as a cultural signifier rather than an economic one (there was a lad on Twitter recently, saying he was a landlord in his 20s, but defining himself as "working class", which as a landlord he's not by any reasonable measure). When people say "working class" the word "white" is almost always implied. The perception of Labour is of having abandoned the working class to court support from immigrants and ethnic minorities. Work needs to be done to build class solidarity, in which it's made abundantly clear that immigrants and ethnic minorities, by and large, are the working class just as much as the white working class are, and that they should be on the same side. But it's an astonishingly difficult conversation to have.

Similarly, I saw someone on Facebook comment on an article about a Pride parade, saying that it was disgraceful to be giving money to LGBT communities when there were homeless people on the streets. I pointed out that "homeless" and "LGBT" aren't mutually exclusive categories, and that close to a quarter of all homeless young people are LGBT, that they're more likely to be subject to abuse while homeless than other homeless people are, and more likely to be made homeless than straight people of the same age bracket. As much as the right attack the left for "Identity Politics", the right wing (and often the centre) are just as guilty of putting people in distinct identity categories and ignoring the possibility that one could belong to any number of those categories.

To use another example - a lot of people on the right are obsessed with the idea that the left try to appease both radical Islam and the LGBT community and that it's an untenable arrangement. They were gleefully pointing this out during Islamic protests against LGBT subjects taught in schools. That's an issue that comprises three distinct identity categories - LGBT, Muslim, and the most sacred identity of all, Our Children. But it was barely acknowledged during that debate, and certainly not by anyone on the right, that in that mix were gay Muslims, and gay children, and gay Muslim children. 

The narrative is that Labour rejected the working class in favour of these minority categories. One of the many struggles moving forward should be to show that this isn't the case, and that there is no contradiction in this support. Because as much as we need to reach out to the communities we've lost, we don't want to abandon those we've picked up along the way. To me, that requires a more genuinely socialist, and intersectional approach to minority rights issues, and how they relate to class concerns. And I don't fully understand what that looks like yet. Even more than that, I don't know how you then communicate that message to people. But finding a Centrist MP you can stick in a flat cap and parade around north of Watford isn't going to be good enough. 

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11 minutes ago, organizedkaos said:

What do you feel are the issues the left are ignoring (broadly, I realise that's a pretty extensive question?). I feel like there's been a lot of that being said today. Now I realise I don't know what it feels like to struggle, but stuff like - having an NHS, public services etc is beneficial? Corbyn had policies for creating jobs and the like. I'm not really sure what they were missing. 

The ones I mentioned mostly. I'm not saying Corbyn did or it wasn't in the manifesto (which no one was bothered about bar the headlines) but all we've done this last few years is demonise the people who voted leave and we've ended up in a fucking dire situation. So I'd be looking to learn from that.

11 minutes ago, organizedkaos said:

Obviously Brexit was a huge issue but if you believe that Brexit will hurt more than it will help is it in good conscience to "just do it" as the Tories offered?

Brexit obviously exists outside of normal party politics so is a difficult one but Labour had a leader known to favour leaving the EU who campaigned half-heartedly for remain and has spent the last three years on the fence and then when it's come to election time, remained on the fence. He's a right-wing headline writer's dream. On the one side you had Johnson huffing "Get Brexit Done" which we all mock but that was enough to appeal to the leave demographic.

11 minutes ago, organizedkaos said:

It feels like there's a lot of "the Left don't understand what so many struggling people want" and "the Right convince struggling people to vote against their best interests". I politically would very much like to support things that help people (so long as those things are "send the buggers back")

I feel the same. I want to see a party ruling who put people before pounds and pence and look after the most vulnerable in society. But we're not going to get the chance to do that without gaining support from a wider range of people.

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Wow the map of results on BBC is just a swarth of blue, unbelievable. Really weird election to watch because I seemed to mirror so much of the last US election with perhaps less shock. At least I'll no longer have to listen to my braying family going on about "how could them dumb yanks elect someone like Trump" anymore.

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I Googled it and, honestly, I'm no wiser. I could probably guess what the purpose of it is, but here's a US job description I found;

Quote

Catch and load chickens using proper lifting and loading techniques. Operate catching and loading equipment using proper techniques and procedures to insure safe handling of birds. Other duties as assigned.

 

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1 hour ago, BomberPat said:

The more I think about it, the more I think appeals to "centrism" as a means of removing Jeremy Corbyn from the Labour Party in the hope that any desire for genuine left-wing politics magically disappears with him are akin to those in America who think that getting rid of Donald Trump will somehow magically fix the deeply ingrained issues that got them to the point of electing him in the first place. It's a political ideology of papering over the cracks, dealing with the symptoms, rather than looking at what it is that has led people to increasingly extreme points - whether that's Brexit, Trump, or what passes for "far left" in British mainstream politics. "Centrism" is a call for business as usual, for the status quo, and a complete failure to recognise that it's business as usual that people are reacting against in the first place. 

We need a new direction, and Blair 2.0 is absolutely not it. Because if the centrists of the Labour Party think that Jeremy Corbyn, a fairly unremarkable parliamentarian of some thirty years, was trouble, they're going to get a real shock in a few years time if they try and silence the left wing again, to see what they come up with next time, if no meaningful action is made to appeal to the left, and to appeal in a real sense to those for whom neoliberalism and modern capitalism are the problem. 

I deeply respect your opinion on most things, Bomber, but it worries me that you're already starting to convince yourself that this wasn't an utter rejection of the speed and enthusiasm with which the left of the Labour movement pushed the whole party to the Left.

I honestly think that the manifesto that Labour produced isn't a million miles off one that would see very broad support across the country, but if you put people like Corbyn or Owen Jones up as the future of the country the policies won't matter a bit.

You keep saying that Blair's Third Way is defunct, but his way of making the Labour movement electable, returning huge majorities and keeping the Tories out of power seems like a fucking good model to follow right now.

Just as the Democrats have failed to address why people vote for Trump, and work out how to present them with an alternative, if Labour don't work out what WILL get the electorate back on side, they'll lose the next election.  And the one after that.

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Again, it's tricky to see where the line between "give up your principles" and "consider the electorate" goes.

It's not about getting the team Labour into power, it's getting someone who may do things you think will help society into power. There's a reason a lot of the people who moved towards Labour in the Corbyn years have 0 interest in a Blair type back in power. (Obviously if Labour wants to do that and get's, that's cool - they'd be better than the Tories a bit - although as others  have pointed out, their previous centristy types didn't fare super).

I'm intrigued by what you said about the manifesto being roughly right but the personalities not. Specific parts of the manifesto they bought to the table that harmed it? Or just the general perspective of being Communists (which I find a little hard to take on board "Pick someone who the opposition won't lie about")? Something else?

As others posted in response to my previous message, Boris Johnson's stance on Brexit worked for him but I also believe it's a stance based on no principals nor an accurate depiction of reality. I'm very very up for learning how to be better, I'm not up for the answer being "stoop to their level"

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4 minutes ago, Loki said:

I deeply respect your opinion on most things, Bomber, but it worries me that you're already starting to convince yourself that this wasn't an utter rejection of the speed and enthusiasm with which the left of the Labour movement pushed the whole party to the Left.

I honestly think that the manifesto that Labour produced isn't a million miles off one that would see very broad support across the country, but if you put people like Corbyn or Owen Jones up as the future of the country the policies won't matter a bit.

You keep saying that Blair's Third Way is defunct, but his way of making the Labour movement electable, returning huge majorities and keeping the Tories out of power seems like a fucking good model to follow right now.

Just as the Democrats have failed to address why people vote for Trump, and work out how to present them with an alternative, if Labour don't work out what WILL get the electorate back on side, they'll lose the next election.  And the one after that.

I don't think we necessarily disagree.

I agree that the manifesto is one that should be garnering support, and that Corbyn is a large part of the reason it didn't. Any Labour leader will be up against major criticism from the media, but he did an utterly dreadful job at providing a counter-narrative. But at the same time, we wouldn't have had that manifesto without Corbyn's push to the left. We wouldn't have seen the conversation around austerity change from seeing it as essential to seeing it as a political choice without Corbyn. 

I think Blair's Third Way model is defunct for a lot of reasons - partly it comes down to trust, partly it comes down to the Third Way/centrist politics being designed to win over middle-class voters, when what we're losing now is working class support, so a push further in the wrong direction could be disastrous. And, again, this election has hardly been a ringing endorsement of centrist politics in any other quarters, so I find it hard to support the idea that Labour would have won had it leaned more in the direction of the Lib Dems, or any of the ex-Labour MPs who stood on a centrist platform and lost. 

Labour absolutely need to rethink just about everything around their approach, and that's what I've been saying. But that rethink can't, as many seem to be pushing for, just be New Labour 2.0. A clear, cynical return to the Blair model would be just as disastrous as carrying on regardless under Corbyn, in my opinion. We need restructuring and refocusing on the same scale as the transition to New Labour, but absolutely not just aping their approach. I think centrism is a safe choice in times of relative stability and prosperity - every indication now is that modern voters are pushing toward (relative) extremes, not just in the UK, but globally. To pursue a centrist agenda is papering over the cracks, and in the long-term I honestly believe it would do more harm than good.

Unfortunately, the downside to everything I've just said is that it's a long, long list of what not to do. I don't know what the road map looks like for where we should be going instead.

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6 hours ago, MPDTT said:

One more thing - some of the comments on this forum over the last few weeks about Rachel Riley have been absolutely disgusting and those who made them should hang their heads in shame

Can you quote the examples you refer to?

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6 hours ago, MPDTT said:

I never throw personal insults, I never belittle anyone and I never swear at people for their different views.

Huh.

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37 minutes ago, Loki said:

You keep saying that Blair's Third Way is defunct, but his way of making the Labour movement electable, returning huge majorities and keeping the Tories out of power seems like a fucking good model to follow right now.

Several of us have made this point several times, Loki, and you appear to be glossing over it: the Third Way/New Labour direction made Labour electable in 1997, but it also got them voted out in 2010. Are you saying that Brown standing again or David Milliband or Yvette Cooper or any other big-name Labour centrist would've got them back in again straight away?

New Labour/Blair/Brown are the very reason why people say Labour crashed the economy and can't be trusted to run it.

Conversely, genuinely socialist politicians haven't had a say in the running of this country for 40 years. And it's not like Corbyn was proposing anything particularly radical or "hard Left" as the Right and Centre like to make out. He was proposing measures and policies that Scandinavian countries have put into practice to the massive benefit of their populations, and get lauded here as "social democratic".

 

What Labour also need to do next time is challenge this absolute lie that the Tories are good at managing the economy. They're clearly not, when they adopt an austerity approach that assumes that all public spending is 50% waste, ignoring the principle of fiscal multipliers where there's actually a return on investment that feeds back into the economy, or prevents greater expenditure. They've actually shrunk the economy and its ability to regenerate itself by treating a country like it was a company.

Case in point: flood defences. The Tories in their fiscal wisdom decided to cut back on those, and what happened? Floods. Which did damage. Which the government then had to spend eight times the amount they tried to save in order to fix it.

The NHS demonstrably returns on investment. As does welfare. And the Tories cut back on both of those.

 

Labour as they currently are also need to really re-think their manifesto. It was too much, especially as they hadn't done anything to challenge the perception that Labour are profligate and irresponsible in government. They should've gone down the route of strategic investment, cutting back on certain things and investing in others. That's what Portugal did, and guess how their economy's doing now?

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3 hours ago, Accident Prone said:

Again, this is fine if you're debating the finer details of the immigration manifesto or looking at where all those tax dollars go to. But if someone called into O'Brian's show and said "I AM VOTING FOR THE TORIES BECAUSE LEAVE MEANS LEAVE AND I DON'T LIKE ALL THESE NON-WHITES IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD AND I DON'T CARE ABOUT THE REPERCUSSIONS TO THE NHS" he would absolutely be in his rights to tell that person to fuck off. You can't debate rationally with bigots, racists and cunts.

That person still gets a vote, so your attitude is just going to see you more upset every time there’s an election. Left-wing, middle-class millennials screaming that everyone who doesn’t vote Labour is a stupid racist who has been fooled by the evil Jew media is a huge part of the problem. The echo chamber convinces you that you and your likeminded friends are the norm and that everyone different is strange and vile, too disgusting to consider as a worthwhile human being - you cast them as The Other, the way they do with foreigners/dolemites/blacks/gaylords/whoever. And the results show that you’re wrong. You’re the outlier, not them.

The echo chamber crew just isn’t big enough to win an election, as has been proven every time out over the last five years. And the obnoxious preaching just alienates everyone outside of that psychographic. The “we really care about poor people” sentiment, for example, rings false when followed by the “FUCK U POOR PEOPLE WHY U VOTE WRONG U IDIOTS OR EVIL CUNTS UR A TURKEY VOTING FOR CHRISTMAS” type stuff we see today. Pretending to be compassionate while treating politics like an angry football rivalry ain’t working.

The sort of people that have become big, loud Labour supporters in this decade are a niche of the electorate, and have done fuck all to make Labour accessible to anyone outside their niche. They’ve made Labour the party for Citizen Smith. Labour has been hijacked by the likes of Owen Jones, and crying that everyone who doesn’t like Owen Jones is a bigot might get retweets but it’s never, ever going to turn this situation around.

If you really care about improving things, it’s time to get some perspective and let go of the myopic, dogmatic, sixth former idealism. You can’t brute force that Labour Party into power. Gonna have to actually engage with the people who voted conservative, or didn’t vote at all. If you really care, you can’t just keep trying to Other them. They will just respond by trouncing you in elections.

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19 minutes ago, Keith Houchen said:

Can you quote the examples you refer to?

I believe I called her a cunt. 

Deserved. 

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