New blog on the block

JVL Introduction

We heard of a new blog, starting today, and thought we’d give it a boost.

Its author explains himself below. Just to note here that he is “just an ordinary Labour Party member [who has]…never held elected office”.

But one who, like so many others, worked his socks off for a Labour victory in 2019 – and on many other occasions.


Who am I?

My name is Nick Jenkins and I am a Labour Party member. Not a recovering ex-member but still a paid-up member.

As you will see in my letter to Sir Keir Starmer, I first joined the party more than 40 years ago. For professional reasons – I have been a journalist for more than 45 years – I wasn’t a member for all that time. But I am now.

Why? Because I believe the Labour Party is still the best route to a progressive government for my country, my family and my friends – even for the few, though maybe they don’t recognise that yet.

I understand why many good people have decided to leave the Labour Party… it has been tough for members recently. But I am going to stick it out for now.

Will this become a regular and active blog? I don’t know yet. Let’s see. But if it resonates with you in any way, do follow me. We’ll find out together if any hope remains. I’m always the optimist, so let’s hope so!


Dear Sir Keir…

I hear you have been going around the country listening to people’s views on how Labour can win the next election. Unfortunately, I missed the adverts for when you were holding sessions in West Yorkshire, so I am writing to offer my views for you to listen to before the Labour conference.

I am just an ordinary Labour Party member: I have never held elected office, I am not a branch or Constituency Labour Party officer. That doesn’t mean I haven’t been involved. Like hundreds of thousands of members, I was out in all weathers working for a Labour victory in 2019 in an election that, you will recall, was held in December. My constituency is semi-rural, so knocking on doors and delivering leaflets meant going out in wind and freezing rain, in daylight and in darkness, in towns and on country lanes and muddy footpaths. What drove us on was hope – hope for the best Labour government of our lifetimes.

Every Labour member will have their own story, but I will tell you a little of mine. I am a journalist and I first joined the party more than 40 years ago. I helped get Tony Banks selected and elected in Newham North West. We moved to west London, where I met future general secretary Margaret McDonagh, then a London organiser for the party, while campaigning in the 1988 Kensington by-election. After a move to Leeds, I resigned from Labour, purely because it was professionally inappropriate for me at the time to belong to a political party. I continued, however, to write a huge amount of material for Margaret in my own time, for council elections and parliamentary by-elections (I helped Kate Hoey get elected for the first time… if only I had known!), and for the 1992 general election. I always voted Labour, apart from in 2005 (when I wasn’t a member and I lived in a safe Tory seat). I was appalled by the Iraq War and felt that Charles Kennedy offered a more progressive programme than Tony Blair.

In June 2015, I retired from my job and rejoined the party. It was, as you will recall, a summer of hope after the disappointing general election defeat. I was inspired by my daughters’ enthusiasm for Jeremy Corbyn and felt that, following his landslide election, Labour had a leader who could get young people engaged in progressive politics. Perhaps you too felt that optimism? To see a Labour leader mobbed wherever he went felt like a sign that politics didn’t always have to be the same.

Obviously, it was going to take more than two years to reverse 20 years of electoral decline in 2017, but the biggest increase in Labour’s vote since 1945 told its own story. That election came just a little too soon: a month later, Labour was polling significantly higher than the Tories. It was a defeat, but a defeat that pointed the way towards a route to victory in the future.

The 2019 general election, of course, was the “Brexit Election” and we now know there was no way Labour could have squared that circle – members and voters were split down the middle on the EU. I hoped your renegotiation and second referendum policy might work, but as I kept being angrily told on the doorstep: “We’ve already voted – just get on with Brexit!”

That’s all in the past, but there are lessons we must learn from that disappointment. We know that Labour’s vote and share of the vote, even in 2019, were considerably larger than in 2010 and 2015 (and the vote was bigger even than 2005, when Labour last won). We know that relatively few Labour voters switched to the Conservatives (the Tory vote went up by only 330,000 votes). Most importantly, we know that a huge majority of younger people voted Labour – electoral gold that must not be squandered. Younger voters are the future of our party and of the nation.

What must the Labour Party learn from this? First, it is absolutely vital to hold on to those 10,269,051 votes from 2019. Any marketing expert will tell you that it is much easier to retain an existing customer than to win a new one. So Labour must continue to offer progressive, radical and life-changing policies that will enthuse younger voters. Sadly, the signs right now don’t look good.

Secondly, the party must be united. You were elected on a platform of party unity, but Labour is now more divided than ever. The party has always been a “broad church”, but those in the PLP and elsewhere who opposed the previous leadership well and truly dynamited that church. Can it be rebuilt? Only if those members who devoted their efforts to preventing a Labour government are kept well away.

Here are seven simple actions you can take that would go a huge way towards uniting the party:

1. Publish the Forde Report. Members were shocked last year to read that party staff, employed to get Labour into government, were actively engaged in obstructing that aim. In addition, employees demonstrated appalling racism (even towards senior frontbenchers) and deliberately obstructed the investigation of antisemitism complaints with the aim of embarrassing the party leadership.

Until the Forde Report is published and members know that staff exposed in the leaked report will never again work for Labour or be part of it in any way, there will always be an irreparable rift in the party.

Similarly, anyone in the party who has tried to undermine its electoral chances in the past must not be allowed to play any role in the future – that, of course, includes former MPs who left to form a rival party. It might be invidious to single out any individual, given how many treacherous MPs and ex-MPs tried to undermine the party, but it is impossible to see how Lord Mandelson, a man who said he worked every day to keep Labour out of power, can now have anything to offer to a party that aims to win power.

2. Restore the whip to Jeremy Corbyn. His punishment is against natural justice and it is impossible to understand the logic of withdrawing the whip from the single most popular MP in the party.

Lisa Nandy said this week that he needed to apologise – but for what? In his response to the EHRC’s report on antisemitism in Labour, Corbyn called for the report’s recommendations to be swiftly implemented and added that allegations of antisemitism had been “dramatically overstated for political reasons”. Is there anyone who seriously doubts that?

Journalist Simon Heffer said on national radio that Corbyn “wanted to reopen Auschwitz”. You were a member of Corbyn’s shadow cabinet. How many times did you discuss opening death camps for Jews? The Jewish press, backed up by a former chief rabbi, combined to warn that a Labour government represented an “existential threat” to British Jews. Again, you were in the shadow cabinet. Was it going to be Labour policy to end the existence of Jews? Of course, it wasn’t. So allegations of antisemitism WERE massively overstated and Corbyn was only telling the truth.

Not only that, but he was doing what all of us SHOULD be doing. Unless you believe it is right that Jewish people in Britain should live in fear of Labour, it is your duty, and the duty of every member, to make clear at every opportunity that the antisemitism threat magnified by Labour’s enemies was dramatically overstated.

And it is your duty, as leader of the party, to face down those enemies of Labour who spread this vile calumny that has affected us all. You said last year that your “friend” Jeremy had been “vilified”. It’s time to stand up for him. Give back the whip and appear on a platform with the man who gave you your frontbench job. It’s the least you can do – and the party can’t move on until that happens.

3. Restore free speech and democracy in the party. During the Corbyn years, there were alarmist stories of “Stalinist” purges. They never happened. In the past year, however, there has been a shameful outbreak of censorship, authoritarianism, and suspensions/expulsions of members regarded as “dissidents”. Acting general secretary David Evans, with the help of his regional officers, seems determined to create an atmosphere of fear.

I proposed a motion at my branch that condemned antisemitism and pledged solidarity with Jewish members. Branch officers, in fear of suspension, persuaded me to withdraw the motion. Can you imagine that? After years of being accused, as Labour members, of being complicit in antisemitism, we were effectively banned from condemning it! And we have been banned from discussing the general secretary’s behaviour, which is extraordinary. How many other members’ organisations would allow an employee to ban members from talking about himself?

This “reign of terror” has seen many good people suspended, expelled, or driven to leave the party in disgust. Most worryingly, this has included a disproportionate number of Jewish members, many of them elderly, leading to fears that the party has actually become antisemitic under your leadership. This witch hunt must stop now if Labour is to stand any chance of being united and winning an election at any time in the future.

Please instruct party staff that members are NOT the enemy – it is the Tories they should be fighting

4. Prove that Labour is still a safe place for Jews by recognising Jewish Voice for Labour as a Labour affiliate. JVL worked hard for a Labour victory in 2019, so it is outrageous that it is not affiliated while organisations that worked against the party’s interests in that election continue to enjoy that status.

5. Set up a commission to look at electoral reform. This might not be high on some people’s list of pressing issues – and it can only be implemented if we win an election – but it is important if we are ever going to stop the Conservative Party winning landslides with a minority of votes. I know people who didn’t vote Labour in 2019 simply because the manifesto didn’t include electoral reform.

Reform means making choices from the many voting systems available – Labour needs to have preferred options to put in front of voters at the next general election.

6. Launch an immediate recruitment drive. The Labour Party was the biggest political party in western Europe post-2015 and that made it financially secure. Many members, including myself, gave the party extra money to fight election campaigns in addition to subscriptions. Now the party has gone from financial security to laying off staff.

Worse than that, 150,000 disaffected former members could be spreading negative views about Labour. We need them working for us, spreading good news. Win them back. Make clear this IS the party for them. An excellent start would be (as you suggested last year) to use the 2017 manifesto as a “foundational document” to recreate the optimism of that summer. I know excellent people – who have given way more time and effort than most people to Labour and truly belong in the party – who have left. But other good people are hanging on, so it is not too late to rebuild.

Members are the party’s strength. Stop the exodus now.

7. Start doing more to oppose this dreadful government. This last year, the Tories’ catastrophic mismanagement of the virus and the economy presented a golden opportunity for you to build your personal image and for the party to show it stands up for ordinary people. This opportunity has been missed, but the Tories continue to present open goals to Labour – on broken election promises, National Insurance, pension increases, Universal Credit, wealth tax… It’s time to stop being so defensive and (I know you are a football fan) to slam the ball into the back of that net.

I am only an ordinary member of the Labour Party – but you have been on a “listening tour” this year and, like other members, I believe my views are worth listening to.

Some party officials might prefer this to be a letter of resignation, but I refuse to give those enemies of Labour that satisfaction. I am staying to fight – because, at an age when I could just give up and accept a Tory government for the rest of my life, I still have hope. I hope we can get rid of this appalling government – not for my own sake, but for the sake of my children and my new grandson. And I hope we can replace it with a Labour government worth fighting for.

Will you listen to me? You said you had an open mind, so please hear this: Labour is nothing if it is not standing up for the many. Labour is nothing if it does not have progressive and radical ideas that can enthuse our young people and offer them the hope of a better life. And Labour is nothing if it is permanently in opposition because it has no vision, no alternative, and nothing to win over the voters. The optimism of 2017 showed us a way to win, so let’s learn from that and recapture that sense of purpose that convinced so many.

Thank you for reading this. Please accept it in the comradely spirit in which it was offered – and please listen.

Yours sincerely,

Nick Jenkins
Calder branch of Calder Valley CLP

Comments (39)

  • Carol Machell says:

    Excellent post.
    Really important points made and well written. If only Labour would listen to voices like this.

  • Ian Kemp says:

    This is brilliant Nick I have resigned some time ago. If starmer has the guts to carry out what you have out lined I would re-join. He has to confront his so called backers and lead from the front. It does not matter what Mandelson Blair Hodge say. Confront them publish the Forde Report in full act on it.
    Like you I am getting on in years. Have two daughters and one young grandson I want them to have a future.

  • chris wallis says:

    Totally agree. It’s a pity Starmer or his minders won’t listen. Their agenda is very much not to listen. There is no goodwill, nor do they even pretend to an illusion of it. Conference is crucial. A rejection of Evans would be a proxy vote of no confidence in KS. They are gerrymandering to prevent it but also planning for it just in case. If Evans is confirmed, the left needs a straegy.

  • Rodney Watts says:

    Perhaps I’m wrong, but this is far too good an analysis ,sensible and honest, for the likes of the intended recipient.

  • Dave says:

    What are we doing now – playing fantasy Labour Party?

  • Rosa says:

    Thanks Nick. Your sentiments reflect
    mine. I’ve been a member for more years than I care to remember apart from a fairly short time during the Iraq war. Doubtless there is some anti Semitism in the the darkest recesses of the Labour Party, as everywhere, but the lies and slurs thrown at Jeremy Corbyn would be laughable if not so serious.
    Please note: as a Socialist, Liberal Jew I support a fair and just settlement for Palestine; I support several Israeli/Palestine charitable causes; I have never experienced or sensed any form of anti Semitic behaviour in the Labour Party. Unfortunately I fully expect to be slung out of the Party. Ironic or what?

  • Clare Holland says:

    Absolutely brilliant, I applaud every word.

  • Dr. Steven Cowan says:

    Every word of this letter reflects my own thinking and feelings. I started canvassing for the Labour Party in 1966 and have been active ever since in my union and in the Party and in various affiliated socialist societies etc. etc. My life has been in the Labour Party and movement but what we are experiencing now is more like the Mcarthyite witch hunts in America in the post war period. My two children are progressively and humanistically minded but are becoming estranged from Labour because our ‘Leader’ seems to be attacking the very people who they agree with on policy and human rights issues. I wonder if Keir Starmer is actually opening the door for an upsurge in the Green Party vote especially in areas where the Labour Party is organisationally weak and has declining local electoral success? Like the correspondent I look to LVL for intellectual stimulation and clarity on imortant issues and agree that it should be welcomed as an affiliated socialist society.

  • Janice J says:

    There have been a number of poignant and insightful letters offered to the current Labour leadership over the past few months. We celebrate their awesomeness but we all know that they will have no impact whatsoever on their mission – and will never be replied to. I have also tried on a number of occasions to get their attention, but to no avail.

    In response to my resignation, I was asked for my feedback as to why I had decided to leave, so they could ‘listen’ and learn from their mistakes. I spent hours constructing my 4-page response even though I knew it would probably be filed under “good riddance – don’t readmit…”

    Essentially, I said, the Labour Party no longer represents my core values and to stay with them would greatly impact my ability to perform my job – a role that demands integrity, congruency and a proactive approach to anti discriminatory practice. How can I in all consciousness allow my good name to be associated with such a vile organisation. They are toxic and dishonest, and what they have unleashed amongst the so-called ‘moderates’ is truly chilling.

  • Sandy Palmer says:

    Thank you Nick, that about covers it all, I look forward to hearing his reply to you…but wont hold my breath.

  • Marie Harrison says:

    Thank you Nick for putting these ideas into a coherent argument. Like you I have stayed in the LP although have often been on the brink of leaving. Like you I have experinced anger and despair at the direction of the Labour Leadership. I too have had resolutions pulled off agenda because the Regional officials ruled them out of order with little or no explanation. Keir Starmer had set out to destroy our party and to keep the status quo. He had behaved in a cowardly bullying fashion especially to those on the left in the party. I hope you get an aknowledgement of your letter but sadly I dont think you will. You are much more likely to get a letter of investigation. Good luck comrade.

  • Hanna Khamis says:

    I have long wanted to write exactly this message. With you on every point. It is especially criminal to go chasing the ‘middle vote’ and throw away the youth vote that represents the future.

  • Jennifer says:

    Nick

    Your letter to Keir is an inspiration. You have highlighted key areas and offered ways that the Labour party could build on the recent past. We have to get this dreadful government out of office and the only way we will do this is to unite.

  • Mary Davies says:

    Brilliant letter.

  • Joseph Hannigan says:

    Thank you,Nick.
    You may have said it all.

  • Ken G says:

    With all the sympathy in the world, the plaintive cry “please listen to me Mr Starmer” is getting rather old.

    Starmer is on a mission to eradicate any strand of progressive thought from within Labour, and prevaricating about that fact is part of the problem. His job is literally to NOT listen to the opinions of socialists. Let’s get real.

  • Allan Howard says:

    Nick says the following in his letter to Keir Starmer:

    The party has always been a “broad church”, but those in the PLP and elsewhere who opposed the previous leadership well and truly dynamited that church. Can it be rebuilt? Only if those members who devoted their efforts to preventing a Labour government are kept well away.

    The problem IS that one of those members who devoted their efforts to preventing a Labour government – and played a key roll as such – was Keir Starmer!

    And I know that KS referred to Jeremy as a friend and a colleague in his ‘victory speech’ after he was elected leader (but then went on to say almost immediately that ‘Antisemitism has been a stain on our party….. And I will tear out this poison by its roots….’), but I wasn’t aware that KS said – as Nick relates – that ‘You said last year that your “friend” Jeremy had been “vilified”.

    No doubt KS was having a little joke and, as such, was alluding to himself!

  • J. P. White says:

    I don’t know who this man is but I say this. Every single point he makes is on the nose. We socialists are a community of hopers yet to see a genuine step change both from this current Party machinery where Nick Jenkins identifies authoritarianism never before seen in my 53 years membership of my former party and behavioural step changes from you yourself. If such behaviours as these are allowed to continue and to prevail unchecked, then the entire party apparatus is demonstrably authoritarian, undemocratic, Stalinist and therefore a political irrelevance. Conference MUST be the supreme arena for the democracy of the party! For if there is ANY threat – be it perceived or real – to control the direction of policy from the leadership, Conference becomes a pantomime and you, us and the Labour Party of Keir Hardy will be dead in the water and will deserve to be so.

  • Julie Hope says:

    An excellent letter to Starmer. It would be great if he would read it, take it on board and act upon it. Woefully, I think this is highly unlikely. He has decided on his path and listening to his master’s voices, he will continue to purge the many left wing voters believing that he can win an election by taking this road. What they fail to understand is that the last Labour government were only elected because after so many years of Thatcherism, the people would have voted for anyone to get them out. Now, with the worse possible Tory government in office, people are desperate for change. But will they vote Labour as an alternative? In the years from 2015 – 19 they could see that a different world was possible and their hopes and imaginations were aroused. We need socialism if we are ever to have a better and fairer way of life. Millions now know this and hope for this and are not prepared to accept anything less.

  • Geoff Taylor says:

    Calder Valley CLP must be over-populated with talented activists and organisers that the writer of this letter to the leader of the Labour Party has not found himself drafted in as a member of the Executive Committee.

  • Brian Burden says:

    So how does one subscribe to Nick’s blog?

  • Stephen Richards says:

    A 2nd Vote? Insulting.

  • Anthony Baldwin says:

    In many respects there is nothing else to be said as if Nicks proposals were followed, particularly that of publishing the Forde Report, then many of the reasons which have caused so many of us to give up our membership rather than being thrown out would no longer apply. Membership would be boosted enormously and, were they still to stand in a future Election, even some of Jeremy Corbyn’s critics might be re-elected.
    The reality though is far more depressing as without action on Nick’s points the Party will effectively split and the Tories will be in permanent control in Westminster.

  • Marilyn Jones says:

    Excelleny Nick! We can but try to get him to listen to reason. After that its revolution i guess!

  • Robin Vyrnwy-Pierce says:

    This letter to Starmer could have been written by any of tens of thousands of ordinary Labour members. The foot soldiers who even did their campaigning when Blair was lording it at No. 10 and Chequers.
    If Starmer and Evans continue their purge they risk being seen as a modern day Robespierre and his followers who instituted the Terror and then found they could not stop it as The Terror became the control and Robespierre and the rest were consumed by it.
    Those who lived by the guillotine died by the guillotine.
    Those who live by purging will find themselves purged because there is no one else.
    France ended up with Napoleon.
    We ended up with Starmer.
    Starmer is no Napoleon.

  • Kevin Luke Tulliver says:

    If Keir Starmer refuses to respond to this well written, well argued plea for a considered way forward from the siege like mentality, imposed by ‘stalinesque’ wreckers rather than builders of democracy, then will have to shoulder the full weight of responsibility for the demise of the once and only democratic socialist party of the UK. He will have killed socialism and the chance of true representation in parliament for the vast majority of UK citizens including the many who do not even now realise that to be the case.

  • michael ryan says:

    Yes, I was taking numbers at polling stations and running them back to the committee rooms as a child, leafleting house to house as a teen-ager (and as a retiree), knocking up, canvassing, attending the count, handing out leaflets at stations, markets, shopping centres, as an adult, not to mention endless meetings, fundraising events and now, sixty years on, I’m an ex- member of the Labour Party.
    In all my years I’ve seen leaders whom I’ve liked and probably more that I’ve felt less sure about, but it has never affected my resolve or support (even when the candidate I happened to be working for was not someone I would have chosen).
    What has gone on at Labour Party HQ and within the PLP, since Corbyn’s election has knocked me for a six. I’ve seen plenty of infighting in the Labour Party, over the years, but never the treachery, cynical sabotage and blatant dishonesty we are witnessing now.
    It breaks my heart.

  • Doug says:

    Nick like JC and the vast majority of our members and supporters are thoroughly decent human beans, but unfortunately life isn’t like that
    Temporary Embarrassment and all those behind him are an existential threat to the Labour party, there is no going back from the internal report
    If nothing decisive comes out of conference then the nuclear option 9f bankrupting the party needs to deployed
    Labour Day Tuesday 5th October
    Mass resignation and withdrawal of funding
    Red Tories are in the wrong party

  • Judith Kelman says:

    Wonderful letter! I am being investigated, but I’m not expelled yet and haven’t resigned as yet. I wish I could be this gracious to Keir Starmer, but thank you Nick.

  • Stephen Flaherty says:

    Doug, re the idea of mass resignation, I doubt it’d have huge effects, or at least not huge positive ones. The party had a tiny number of members pre-Corbyn and would, no doubt, still be able to exist on a tiny number of members after this mass resignation you’re advocating. Assuming it actually worked. The effect would be to increase the reliance of the party on corporate doners – the sort of people who are in Progress, like Alan Sugar used to be – and to decrease the power of the membership further.

    Re the article I, too, agree with all the points, especially point 5 (as I’ve mentioned in other comments). Except that I’d say the Labour party doesn’t need a Royal Commission on PR. We’ve already had one and it recommended that Westminster Elections should use AV+, a similar electoral system to that used by the Scots, though with some significant differences. In short, we’ve been there, done that and I don’t see any need for us to do it again. Instead, just implement the recommendations of the Commission, as we should have done 20 years ago. And put it in our manifesto that we’re going to do so. Immediately we get elected. Nobody, and I mean nobody, would trust Labour to keep its word if it said that it was just going to look into it. Again. They’d think that they were just going to set up a commission and ignore its findings. Again.

  • Doug says:

    Stephen Flaherty
    Include the withdrawal of funding from Unions
    There current financial position is precarious to say the least, the threat is more than enough leverage for real change
    We cannot allow this destruction of everything the party stands for to continue a day longer than necessary
    Centrists must form a new party and show us how its done, they can keep their squillionaires and tame unions, im sure they will have the support of the MSM and toilet papers
    we wish them all the very best

  • David Britten says:

    A brilliant contribution that I’m afraid, Starmer will ignore. Sadly the blog seems to have failed to understand the objectives behind the suspicious election of Starmer. It is clear to bt that, during the years of Blair’s era of New Labour, the party was infiltrated by dedicated conservatives who were elevated to senior positions and placed in Labour safe seats to become the largest part of the PLP. The long term objective of this was to ensure that, in every future election, and no matter which of the two major parties was elected, a capitalist neoliberal government would be in power. In other words, and in ever meaningful respect, a one party state…

  • Nick Jenkins says:

    Thanks for all the kind comments. One thing I might say in response is that, after all those years as a journalist, I am not totally naive. I understand much of what has happened in the party over the years but, as this was genuinely a letter that I sent to Starmer, I had to address him on his terms and avoid anything that might be regarded as abuse.
    As for the party’s response, if I receive one, you will be the first to know!

  • Stephen Flaherty says:

    Doug. “Centrists must form a new party and show us how its done”. Well, they’ve done that, twice now, the first time “successfully”, inasmuch as they got nearly as many votes as Labour, though only a dozen or so MPs. The SDP did, however, cause Labour to lose around 60 seats, most of which went to the Tories, gifting them with power for over a decade. This was in 1983 and it took till 1997 before we got the Tories out – and got Blair instead. (Blair and the right wing’s control of Labour in the 90s and 00s can also be traced to this).

    The second time was, of course, the Tinge party a couple of years ago and was completely unsuccessful by any yardstick. So, they’re unlikely to do it again. And why would they? They’re in control of the party.

    If the Unions withdraw their support, where would they send it instead? The same reasons that stop the right-wing of the party from setting up a new party (Tinge was, I think, something of an act of desperation and an overreach for them) also work against US. FPTP is murder on new parties. It took the SDP generations, over 40-50 years, to get to their current dominant state in Scotland, it took Labour generations to get their first government, it took UKIP (and their predecessor, the Referendum Party) decades before they grew strong enough to force the Tories to hold a referendum and then, essentially, adopt all their policies and become UKIP-Lite.

    I believe that there is an appetite for a broad, left wing, Podemos-style party in the UK. I think 2017 proved that, if nothing else. If such a party existed and did reasonably well at an election, maybe the unions could switch to it. Or, perhaps more likely, maybe the right-wingers in the Labour party would dial things back – a new, popular left-wing party would SCARE them, as it would give the people they’re currently alienating and expelling somewhere to go. Somewhere to go and organise and challenge them from.

    But we’ll never get one under FPTP. Which is why I see point 5 – to abandon FPTP and get a sane electoral system fit for purpose – as the most important one.

  • Allan Howard says:

    Yes, of course Nick, you were playing him at his own game, and I didn’t mean to imply that you were being naive, BUT, needless to say, Starmer and Co will of course know that THAT is what you were doing.

    As for getting a response, well I can’t remember how many letters to KS have been reproduced on here, but there’s been more than a few, but I don’t recall a single one of the people who wrote them receiving a response, and THAT in its self speaks volumes.

    In his ‘victory speech – as I’m sure you know – he said the following:

    And to all of our members, supporters and affiliates I say this: whether you voted for me or not I will represent you, I will listen to you and I will bring our party together.

    Well, accept for those on the left, that is! And then:

    The Labour Party is an incredible and powerful force for good. Together with those that went before us we’ve changed the lives of millions of people for the better.

    We created the NHS. We created the welfare state. We passed equalities legislation, the Race Relations Act, we set up the Open University…….

    But we’ve just lost four elections in a row…….

    Yep, the last TWO of which he and the Blairites did everything they could to sabotage and make sure Jeremy lost and the Tories won!

    So much for togetherness and a powerful force for good!!

    Oh, but they just luuurve doing Deception!

  • Eddie Dougall says:

    Wow! Just brilliantly spot-on.

  • Allan Howard says:

    …..except for those on the left, that is, that is!

  • Roy Dunnett says:

    Excellent letter, and I fully agree with the contents. I still find it amazing that so many young people joined the party under Jeremy, and the important point being they will be the future of the party. Under this current leadership the Party is drifting right wards, and far to close to the Israeli Government, and blind to the Palestinian People’s suffering.

  • Kathleen Bellucci says:

    Spot on Nick Jenkins, everything was covered in your letter, it lightened my heart to read it all, all these issues go over and over in my mind but your clear setting out of them all our was just great, many thanks, I look forward to Mr Starmer’s responce.

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