Saturday, 13 November 2010

Labours cuts

This is a blog post which i have been umming and aahring about for a while. I dont want to sound negative or give out a message of dissent but would just like to raise a few issues with the current situation with the labour party.

As a lot of you know i like to form a balanced opinion as much as i can and tonight i'd like to look at the alternative. Yes the alternative Labour offer.

Now i am a labour party member of course but the lack and the slugishness of the leaders in the PLP to form a credible alternative is very frustrating it is making us look weak and not standing for anything.

I do think it is a fair question by the tories to ask what would labour cut instead to the coalition cuts. I am lead to beleive they put down to halve the deficit in 4 years. Such labour cuts would have seen housing benifit cut this is true as i know it to be from reading the Labour party 2010 manefesto, Written with help by none other than Ed miliband.

Lets get one thing straight i'm not critisising Ed miliband for one second or labour as a whole they clearly have a plan under way to sit back and see where the coalition go in the next yaer before making their own move.

Although this can be a good move if the coalitions plans do not come off and we end up going back into recession it would look like labour is still there on peoples side weighing up the options. But i would love to know waht labour would have done in this situation. No doubt whoever got in at the election wuld have had to make cuts. That seems a given. Not that i agree with the cuts it was widely reported labour would have made big cuts too. whether it wanted to or felt it had to to go with the feeling in the country i am not sure. I would love to know this.

But i do think Labours cuts would have been interesting to see, playing devils advicate would they have been any fairer than they are now. i am pretty sure they would be but how much i ask you ?

Housing benifit cuts depending on how you structure them could be fair but i do wonder.

The longer labour leave it going without a credible alternative to the current cuts the longer we will look weak on economic matters. To alan johnson and Ed miliband i urge you to get a plan down on the desk even if a draft of cut where you would make and where you would not make them. Make them so the rich do pay more. I dont care if it looks like your attaking the more well off than the poor, After all are we not the labour party who was founded on the basis of the working class with a union movement behind us. I recognise a lot of this has been lost now to a lot of career based polititians in it for themselves more than standing for something. I must stress this is not everyone of course there are some labour MP's who do still stand for something and do this very well.

This post is in aid of the party and its current direction not a slagging off post. I do hope people see it for what it is that even members inside it can offer constructive advice and opinion of where we are going. As afterall didnt Ed miliband in his leadership campaign offer to reconnect with labour grass roots activism and working class people. He claimed we had lost trust, well lets start regaining this trust shall we by talking to the people most affected by these savage coalition cuts and forming policies to defend them. That would be my start of a comeback for labour and a tune to play with the public.

Once we have assured people we are on their side we can then really get down to offering an alternative to which the country including myself would love to hear.

Even as a leftist leaning labour member
I do think there is many things we could cut. Bankers bonus's for a start. Trident is something i feel we could do without. Even if it costs us in the short term it will be worth it in the long term

I also reccomend looking at big tax evaders. Wealthy capatilist tax dodgers must be clamped down on. Alot i might add who do fund the tory party but even big business such as vodafone should feel ashamed of itself for evading big tax bills. These are the cuts we should be making not the ones on the working class and the less well off.

I think there is a route for labour now but we must tread carefully and with confidence when we do. We must defend the people and let the people believe in us again, after the lib dems broken promises we must latch on to that and prove we can be trusted again and fast.


  1. Mark, Labour would not have cut as fast or as far as the Tory/Liberal coalition. This was the expectation of bond markets.

    There was talk before the election of a "fairness test" being applied to all proposed cuts. We should be calling for the same to be applied today - one London MP David Lammy has suggested rent controls would be fairer than the government's HB measures.

  2. how can we be sure though? labour had a cut to housing benifit in their manefesto, i'm a labour member and am just worried all around that cuts in any shape or form whetehr they be dealt by the tories or labour would be bad for the country. I agree with Ed balls's assessment that this country needs far more growth than cuts right now. Andy burnham suggested creating a national care service similar to what we set up after the war in difficult times in the NHS. investing in our future and future jobs must be key to solving this mess we find ourselves in i feel.

  3. I think what we have to remember is that the decisions made by a Labour government or Labour council are constrained by being in office but not fully in control.