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"This is a party that was founded for working people, this is a party that I strive every day to make the party of working people" - Ed Miliband, 21 November 2014

"Left parties have lost office in Europe because of their inability to articulate an alternative to austerity and cuts. The right offers individualism, a huge and growing wealth gap and a mean and divided society. Socialism is the sharing of wealth, the contribution of ability for the common good, and unity in defending our achievements against attack. It's also our only hope" - Jeremy Corbyn, 6 January 2012

CLPD campaigns for:

  • a real policy-making Annual Conference

  • an effective and accountable NEC

  • the defence of the Trade Union link

  • more progressive Labour candidates for elected office who are women or BAME; and, generally, for an increase in candidates with a working-class background, to counteract the current unacceptable under-representation

  • a local electoral college for choosing leaders of council Labour Groups

  • an internal Party ombudsperson

  • a clear jobs and growth policy in sharp opposition to the Tories and austerity

  • CLPD supports the Charter for a Democratic Conference

    1. At least 50% of conference time should be reserved for contributions in policy debates by delegates

    2. The criteria for motions should be flexible and fair

    3. Conference should choose the right policies, not rubber stamp them

    4. Conference decisions and all papers should be available online to party members

    5. The structure of conference needs a review by the Conference Arrangements Committee



    Quotes of the month

    "There is another world in our Movement, alas. A world of smears and plots. That is where you will find Tom Watson. When unity is required, Tom manufactures division... Tom is a product of the manipulative and authoritarian culture of the old trade union right-wing, for whom power was an end in itself, and all means were acceptable to attain it" - Len McCluskey, Huffington Post. CLPD congratulates Len on his victory over Tom Watson and John Spellar and their hard-right "Labour First" cronies. 21 April 2017.

    "A woman who always keeps her promises has called an election she promised not to, in order to obtain a mandate she says she already has, for a policy she said was a bad idea" - David Robjant, Guardian, 19 April 2017.

    "Asked on BBC News whether her country needed nuclear weapons, a North Korean woman said: 'If we do not have nuclear weapons, other countries' weapons will fall on our land'. his sounded paranoid... Britain has the same policy!" - David Butler, Guardian 17 April 2017.

    "The statement, 'Hitler supported Zionism', is not a fact. It is an interpretation... The real problem, in a way, is the tone of Livingstone when giving this interpretation. There's no sympathy. No compassion - no sense of the tragedy behind this... I am not a Zionist. I'm an atheist and I don't hold with religion being the basis for statehood... I do not support the appalling actions of the present Israeli Government" - David Baddiel, Guardian, 7 April 2017.

    "The Transfer Agreement... did happen. It is chilling to insist that a member of a democratic party (which believes in free speech) should resile from what is historical fact. As a Jewish member of the Labour Party, I feel I must support Livingstone and oppose the punishment imposed on him. If that means I will be expelled from the Party, so be it" - Dr Ian Saville, Guardian, 6 April 2017.

    "There is something seriously awry when Lord Mandelson, with total impunity, can publicly boast that every single day he deliberately does something to damage our Party's chosen Leader. And yet one comment by Ken Livingstone ìs formally considered by the NCC over several days, with two QCs, 800 pages of documents, witnesses etc. etc. Then, after some 96 hours of deliberation, the NCC hands down its considered judgement, which is final. Despite all this, there is still fuss being made about Ken Livingstone. But about Lord Mandelson's harmful (to our Party) comments - sweet FA" - Pete Willsman, CLPD Secretary, 5 April 2017.

    "Between 1946 and 1973 UK real GDP, per person, rose by 2.7% per year. But it rose only 0.9% per year in the 150 years to 1939. It could be that what we're seeing now is a reversion to the long-term norm" - Investors Chronicle, March 2017.

    "George Osborne... now picking up £650,000 a year for four days work a month at the fund manager BlackRock, pushed through benefit cuts that will mean some families will be £7,000 a year worse off" - Larry Elliott, The (dire) Guardian, 9 March 2017.

    "In 1997 Labour had 58.2% in Copeland and 66.2% in Stoke Central. In 2015 it was 42.3% and 39.3% respectively... If Labour fails in Copeland or Stoke, we will read that it was 'Corbyn's fault'. If, as I suspect, Labour succeeds, we will read that it was down to 'local factors'" - David Rosenberg, The (dire) Guardian, 22 Feb 2017.

    "Why should the pond life that dragged itself from the (council) estates to the ballot box be allowed to ruin everything for the rest of us?" - A direct quote from 'a member of the intellectual establishment', calling for Parliament to reject the Referendum result, Sunday Times 12 February 2017.

    Older "quotes of the month"


    For further news visit http://www.grassrootslabour.net and www.leftfutures.org

    Model rule changes to be considered for Labour Party conference

    Click here for text of rule changes. The deadline for submission is 7 July 2017. CLPD EC on 25 June agreed also to circulate some rule changes from Momentum: click on the same link for them.

    Nominations for CAC and NCC

    The Conference Arrangements Committee (CAC) has a crucial role in influencing the running of conference, and therefore requires candidates who will represent the wishes of members. CLPD urges CLPs to nominate Seema Chandwani and Billy Hayes for the two CLP reps on the Conference Arrangements Committee (CAC). Seema Chandwani is a CLP Secretary (Tottenham CLP, Labour Party Membership Number: L1187007); and Billy Hayes is the former General Secretary of the Communication Workers Union (Mitcham and Morden CLP, Labour Party Membership Number A065571). The election for these reps will be by a One Member One Vote ballot this summer.

    CLPD also urges CLPs to nominate Anna Dyer and Emine Ibrahim for the two CLP reps on the National Constitutional Committee (NCC). Anna Dyer is a sitting member of the NCC (Glasgow Maryhill and Springburn CLP, Labour Party Membership Number L0081865) and Emine Ibrahim is a CLP rep on the London Region's Labour Party Board (Hornsey and Wood Green CLP, Labour Party Membership Number L0150489). The election of these reps will be by CLP delegates at the Annual Conference in September.

    Click here for pdf leaflets: Billy Hayes; Seema Chandwani; Emine Ibrahim; Anna Dyer.

    CLPD Fringe Meetings at Labour Party conference 2017

    Saturday 23 and Tuesday 26 September, both at 6.30pm. Chairs Lizzy Ali and Rachel Ward. Speakers include: Iona Baker (NPF), Richard Burgon MP, Kelvin Hopkins MP, Paul Mason, Cat Smith MP, Steve Turner (Unite), Mick Whelan (ASLEF), also several CLP Reps from NEC, including CLPD Secretary Pete Willsman, who will give a special briefing for delegates. Venues to be confirmed.

    8 June 2017: Labour’s people-power defeats Tory fat-cats

    and now the celebrations!

    Our Party’s members and all our part-time and full-time staff have achieved a result that will be positively highlighted in the history books. Jeremy’s modus operandi has always been: ‘We can achieve the impossible quite quickly, miracles may take a bit longer.’

    What better way to celebrate than to humiliate the so-called ‘political commentators’ on The Guardian and The Observer (not to mention all the other doom-mongers and naysayers). These writers pick up their fat pay packets under false pretences. These are also among the ignoramuses who discerned that two-party politics would never return. Almost every day one encounters commuters on the bus with more political nous than this lot.

    But first, a quote from a journalist who seemingly has some perception:

    “If Jeremy Corbyn does take Labour to 40%, he will have done more to increase Labour’s vote share than anyone since Clement Atlee in 1945” - Fraser Nelson, political commentator for The Spectator.

    Now for the inferior stuff:

    • “As gambles go [i.e. May’s gamble] it is about the surest bet any politician could ever place... May’s gamble was a gamble for those who like their wagers ultra-low risk.” J. Freedland, “political commentator”, The Guardian, 19th April.
    • “Labour’s real problem is that not enough people are paying attention any longer. It will take more than a manifesto to change that.” M. Kettle, “political commentator”, The Guardian, 12th May.
    • “Labour’s best hope of limiting the size of a Tory victory will turn on convincing moderate voters that there is absolutely no possibility of Prime Minister Corbyn. That ought not to be too difficult... The Conservatives will connive with Mr Corbyn to maintain a fiction that there is a serious possibility that they could lose and the Labour leader could win number 10.” A. Rawnsley’, “political commentator”, The Observer, 23rd April.
    • “Theresa May will form the next government. The only point of interest is how large her majority will be... May would never have risked an early election if Labour had competent leaders, who had not alienated millions of voters.” N. Cohen, “political commentator”, The Observer, 23 April.
    • “On 14th May, in questioning the Labour Party manifesto, The Observer editorial critically asked ‘why 10,000 extra police officers, when crime is falling?’” Letter in The Observer, 4th June.

    And now the epilogue.

    On the eve of polling, The Guardian (8th June) reported that, “most Labour insiders believe they are unlikely to advance on Ed Miliband’s 2015 tally of 232 seats. Many Labour candidates say Corbyn’s leadership is still problematic among voters, and the most pessimistic believe May could still secure a much increased majority of 80-100 seats.” These ‘comrades’ have such hostility to JC and the Labour Left that their grasp of reality is totally distorted.

    • “What could have been achieved if the Parliamentary Labour Party had got behind their Leader instead of squandering months on a needless second leadership contest.” Reverend Christopher Griffiths, The Guardian, 8th June.

    Finally, we have the Leader of the political party that The Guardian and The Observer are invariably echo chambers for: “‘I cannot resist the temptation of taking on Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party – the most ineffective opposition in interplanetary history.’” Tim Farron putting words into Theresa May’s mouth when she decided to call a General Election. The Guardian, 22nd April.

    Of course, many journalists in the Guardian stable are excellent. And also, right at the end, The Guardian did come out for Labour – unlike 2010, which will never be forgotten or forgiven. Nevertheless, there is no excuse for the poor quality of the material from a significant minority of their ‘political commentators’.

    Pete Willsman, CLPD secretary, 9 June.

    Click here to read the Labour manifesto for the 8 June 2017 general election.

    Guide for new Labour Party members

    Taken, with thanks, from Momentum Sheffield. Click here to download pdf.

    Report from CLPD AGM 25 February 2017

    Read the report here.

    "Yellow Pages" briefing from London regional Labour Party conference, 12 November 2016

    Click here to download pdf

    "Yellow pages" briefings from Labour Party Conference 2016

    Wednesday

    Tuesday

    Monday

    Sunday

    Pete Willsman's guide to Labour Party conference 2016

    Click here to download


    SUSPENSIONS, EXPULSIONS, LABOUR PARTY DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURES

    New wave of suspensions and expulsions

    "Eventually over 11,000 complaints were logged as well-resourced right wing hit squads scented a golden opportunity and began trawling through known Corbynistas' Facebook and Twitter accounts". Christine Shawcroft reports on the new wave of suspensions and expulsions, November 2016.

    CLPD opposes new expulsions of left-wingers from the Labour Party

    CPLD fears that a new wave of expulsions of Corbyn supporters from the Labour Party may indicate that right-wingers and irreconcilables are using bureaucratic means to try to undermine the overwhelming majority decision of the Party to elect Jeremy Corbyn as leader. We call for a change of Labour Party rules to provide a fair process and for Labour to welcome as members all those who support the Labour Party. Click here to read the statement.

    CLPD opposes expulsions of left-wingers from the Labour Party

    CLPD has agreed a statement opposing the expulsions of Labour Party members on the basis of association with the Alliance for Workers Liberty, and calling for a change of Labour Party rules to provide a fair process and for Labour to welcome as members all those who support the Labour Party. Click here to read the statement.

    Summary of the Chakrabarti report, 1 July 2016

    Click here to read a summary by Mike Phipps.


    JEREMY CORBYN

    Why Corbyn's moral clarity could propel him to no.10

    Click here to read the article by Danny Dorling, professor of geography at Oxford and author of many books including "Injustice: Why Social Inequality Still Persists", on Labour List.

    The Jeremy Corbyn phenomenon

    Speech by Unite general secretary Len McCluskey at the Oxford Union on Tuesday 9 February 2016


    SCOTLAND

    A mountain to climb in Scotland

    Article by Jim McKechnie from Labour Briefing


    TRIDENT

    Setting the record straight on Trident

    Letter to the Guardian by Ann Black, 16 January 2016. See also this statement from members of Labour's National Policy Forum.


    CAPITALISM, SOCIALISM, AND POVERTY

    Gordon Brown on the Tory lies about poverty

    In a speech to the Child Poverty Action Group on 11 November 2015, former Labour leader Gordon Brown slammed eight Tory "fictions" about poverty and tax credits. Click here to read the speech.

    "Falling wages, savage cuts and sham employment expose the recovery as bogus"

    In the Guardian of 20 October 2014, economist Ha Joon Chang, writing under the headline Why did Britain's political class buy into the Tories' economic fairytale?, sums up the case against austerity and gives Labour a wake-up call.

    "Needed: a vigorous opposition to neoliberalism"

    In the Guardian of 3 November 2014, the paper's economics editor, Larry Elliott, bemoans the lack of "fundamental change since the global financial crisis" and concludes that a "collapse not just of communism but also of social democracy" has left an "ideological vacuum... being filled by nationalism, environmentalism and religion".


    LABOUR PARTY STRUCTURES

    The future of the trade union link

    By Pete Willsman: click here to read

    On illegitimate interference by party staff into our internal elections

    Statement by Pete Willsman on the conduct of elections at Labour conference 2013

    CLPD supports the Charter for a Democratic Conference

    Click here to read the Charter online.

    Click here to download the Charter as pdf.


    SELECTIONS, RESELECTIONS, AND THE TRIGGER MECHANISM

    New research shows "gender quotas thus do not pose a threat to 'merit' at any stage of the political process

    "Instead, fostering diversity has contributed to a host of positive democratic outcomes", say researchers Mary Nugent and Mona Lena Krook: http://www.democraticaudit.com/?p=19728

    How to select or reselect your MP

    New edition by Dave Osland. £4.00 from left-wing bookshops or from Five Leaves Bookshop in Nottingham (0115 8373097): post free to mail order customers, pay via PayPal to bookshop@fiveleaves.co.uk. Right-click here for more information.

    How Labour's trigger works

    A CLPD briefing on the re-selection of sitting MPs


    PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION

    Sam Pallis on PR

    "The lure of PR conceals many myths – instead the left must learn to escape its comfort zone", writes Sam Pallis on Labour List (23 August 2016). (Editor's note: PR wonks always claim that their motivation is "more democracy for voters". Nothing is more democratic than every voter being able to vote "yes" or "no" on an issue after a national debate. And yet, many of the wonks are demanding that MPs (elected by, what they claim, is an electoral system that is not very democratic) must overturn the democratic decision of the whole population on the EU. Beneath the veneer covering many a "PR-democrat" lurks a total hypocrite).


    OTHER ISSUES

    Labour and the EU referendum

    See Keir Starmer on Labour List, 31 January 2017.

    Gary Younge: Brexit - a disaster decades in the making

    Click here to read the article.

    VIDEO CLIPS

    Ray Davison on rule changes at Labour Party conference 2014

    The Campaign, a BBC docudrama from 1983 about CLPD

    CLPD secretary Pete Willsman on the Daily Politics



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    Reports of NEC and NPF meetings can be found on our partner site http://www.grassrootslabour.net/



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