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The Blair Witch Project

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On Fri 29 Sep at 1:02pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Yep, Blair pretty much continued Thatchers economic policies and used various tory excuses to not row back on them. Forget being there at the time, we have recorded documentary evidence, instead of unreliable memories from over 30 years ago.

I enjoyed reading this "In 2002, twelve years after Margaret Thatcher left office, she was asked at a dinner what was her greatest achievement. Thatcher replied: “Tony Blair and New Labour. We forced our opponents to change their minds.”
As Tony Blair himself told: “[Thatcher] was immensely kind and generous to me when I was Prime Minister… Politicly, certain reforms she made, for example in Trade Union Law…, we kept the basic legal framework… We didn’t renationalise many of state industries that she privatized… I always thought my job was to build on some of the things she had done rather than reverse them… Many of the things she said… had a certain creditability…Whenever I wanted to ask her for advice, she would always give it… in a genuine, spirited way"

LOL - yep, sounds about right. Blair and Thatcher admired one another not for their differences.....i'm sure she was full in support of tuition fees as well. Free University tuition sounds horrible and communistic, like something somewhere ghastly like Finland and Norway would do....or Scotland.
 
 
On Fri 29 Sep at 6:06pm Nevillman wrote:
Thatcher was right in that she made labour look seriously at what they needed to get elected. Renationalising would cost a fortune. There did need to be some restrictions on unions. Free university would be ideal but you can't go on paying for everything and I thought it was fair enough if you benefited from university to contribute when you were earning enough. I don't know any former students in any kind of hardship as a result of the loan repayments.
I don't know the context within which he praised Thatcher. He tried to respect people though in my opinion and this would apply to a former PM.
I don't expect you to agree or sympathise with anything I've said green
My memory may be unreliable but politically things were good. He spent on good public services. You are an extremist and I really would not have wanted many of the things you would want.
How's it going with getting the greens into power on a platform you agree with?
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On Fri 29 Sep at 7:04pm Green Sleeves wrote:
My reply was banished, think it was because i included a link and info. It doesn't like detail or lefties. I'll summarise, if it shows up later, then you'll get it twice for value.

You keep referring to me as an "extremist", and implying my views are so far from mainstream and really fringe, yet more people came out and voted for Corbyn than they did for Blair in 2001 or 2005, and certainly a lot more than Brown and Miliband did subsequently. This was on a progressive left wing manifesto, and it proved popular not because it was fringe or "extreme". Meanwhile, Blair LOST 5m votes between 1997 and 2005, and that surely can't be because of Blairs dazzling personality/presentation and political skillset.....

"My memory may be unreliable but politically things were good" - lol I don't think the family members of David Kelly would agree, but "centrists" tend to have short-term memory. I previously posted a clip of Alistair Campbell and John McDonnell arguing on Question Time from around 2016/17 (when Labour were trying to get elected), and your views and rhetoric remind me of Campbell (and this foolish "centre" vs left arguments). He came off very poorly trying to smear McDonnell and Corbyns Labour, and unwilling to accept that he was a huge part of the reason why trust in politicians were so low. Its a great clip, and hopefully it will come back up again, if not, just google it.
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On Fri 29 Sep at 7:10pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Here is John McDonnell vs Alistair Campbell debating the state of Labour. I think McDonnell came off far better, but i guess i am biased. Perhaps in an alternate reality, Campbell got all the audience applause, because they all agreed how amazing Blair and he were

As for your re-nationalising excuse - borrowing was cheap back then, they had the opportunity to do so, but failed to, as they aren't the real Labour Party, and just a continuation of the Conservatives, as demonstrated by the continuation of their policies. It was short-sighted politics, and has ultimately cost more in the long run....hindsight is a wonderful thing, but its amazing how many times these so-called "good" leaders were wrong, and how often their much maligned opponents were right. I enjoyed your comment about tuition fees though, very "well i've not heard anyone complain, so i'm alright jack!"

Watch the video »
 
 
On Fri 29 Sep at 8:02pm Nevillman wrote:
I'm not defending every thing that happened in the Blair years like Campbell, Kelly and lots more. But overall I can say that compared with the previous 18 years and subsequent 13 it was pretty good. Extremist is a subjective term. A left wing manifesto it would appear is nearly good enough to win but actually not.
I made the comment on tuition fees because what I've seen of the repayment plan, certainly under labour, it really wasn't a huge amount and only over a reasonably high income.
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On Fri 29 Sep at 9:01pm Green Sleeves wrote:
"Nearly good enough to win but actually not" - that in itself was a remarkable feat, given the catastrophic media hatchet jobs on Corbyn and Labour, and with people like Alistair Campbell and Tony Blair singing their praises like in that clip(ahem), its amazing they managed to get THAT close, and it was literally down to a few thousand votes across a few marginal constituencies when you drill down the numbers. What a shame is all I can say, and it was encouragingly close enough that it will hopefully happen again in my lifetime, perhaps not in those that have continually voted against progress. Hence why its foolish to write off progressives as "extreme", when clearly there is plenty of appetite for it in Britain and around the world despite the best efforts by many to undermine them by labelling them as anti-semites etc.

Kier Starmer has taken the view to reject the progressives though, and thats his choice, and he prefers the "New Labour" strategy and the Blairites/Campbells like you do, hoping the electorate forgot what they did before and instead have rose-tinted specs regarding the Blair era. I have a funny feeling its going to be a great short-term success for them. But come on, even frickin' Tom Pain could beat the Tories in the next election, its a shame they feel the need to essentially emulate them! Another U-turn by Labour i see today on their previous pledge about stripping "charitable status" from private schools. I suppose we can't be too cruel to the rich, that VAT is going to really hurt them after all, so at least they can still get their tax breaks, bless them. "The Continuity Party" is basically what New Labour should just call themselves. I'm sure i'll be voting for them again when someone with a backbone, authenticity and progressive policies comes in again, but i'll just skip the next election for now and mock from the sidelines with "i told you so".
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On Fri 29 Sep at 10:05pm Tom Pain wrote:
It's so sweet of the Tweedle Twins to remember me amidst their corrosive vituperations over a couple of dreary Fabian Society brothers.
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On Sat 30 Sep at 12:14pm Green Sleeves wrote:
You have discovered that your name in being used to try to make a cheap point. This is the Tom Pain appreciation forum after all, we must remember our place.
 
 
On Sat 30 Sep at 6:13pm Nevillman wrote:
The term progressive is as value laden and subjective as extremist. Nice try to try to purloin it. There's only been 2 labour leaders win elections in my lifetime. Wilson and Blair. It's not so easy and I'm afraid the conservatism of the British people means starmer has to be careful. I hope he is more "progressive"than he seems and the left wing of the party don't sabotage him and your prediction comes true. The electorate really don't like a divided ruling party.
How revealing Tom that you see the discussion between green and myself in that light. I thought we kept it pretty clean on the whole. I leave the nasty stuff up to you.
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On Sat 30 Sep at 7:34pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Yep, and Blair was far closer politically to Thatcher than he was to Wilson. Go figure. Trust me, its not the left-wing "extremists" of the Labour Party that Kier Starmer and New(er) Labour need to worry about.....its about pursuing the same policies as the establishment Conservative and corporate media, being dishonest just to get in power, and ultimately failing in power because adopting the same mistakes as the tories tends to not work out well.

Starmer needs to worry far more about sabotaging his own legacy, and turning into another Labour pariah like Blair. I somehow doubt his fellow spineless cabinet of the likes of Wes Streeting or Rachel Reeves will be enduring political figures either. He lacks the courage of his convictions of his predecessor Corbyn, and the snake-oil slippery salesman of the guy he's trying to emulate in Blair. Plus most people, aside from Lewes a-political boomers like Nevillman, are not anywhere near as full of Blairite/New Labour joy as it was in 1997. He just about has the "Murdoch" empire support that was afforded to Blair, Cameron and Johnson and the opposite of Corbyn, so he will get into office.....but given his u-turns and lack of any significant character, its certainly gonna be more short-lived than old Lionel Blairs tenure. Which is a good thing, as although we get another Tory in power, we might get a decent opposition that can hold the government to account and offer a progressive agenda once again.
 
 
On Sat 30 Sep at 7:46pm Nevillman wrote:
I've no idea how starmer will be. I hope he's better than you suggest he could be or a good successor comes along.
That last bit is like trots of old wanting things to get so bad the conditions will be right for revolution.
I meant to ask. What policies would you see a "progressive" labour party implementing?
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On Sat 30 Sep at 8:12pm Green Sleeves wrote:
"Old trots" - same old insults/smears from the establishment boomers that fear lefties more than those that have always been in power and ultimately wrecking the country. "Red fear" propaganda has clearly stuck for some. I'm sure most progressives today know about as much about "Trotsky" as you do, which is not a lot, the same as what you appear to know about Blair. "Progressives" on the left are those that ultimately stick to progressive policies. If you're going to pledge to cut tax loopholes for the wealthy, then do it, don't water it down in fear of upsetting the elites as Starmer has done today with independent schools, and do things that Labour was formed to do, which is stand with workers and the trade unions instead of being embarrassed to be seen on the picket lines with them in fear of upsetting the elites and corporate media again, or being heckled by the tories for actually supporting with their core base. We just want a progressive leader with a backbone that isn't going to kneel to the minority that need the very least help.

I don't wish things to be bad, its just inevitable, as nothing will change under a Starmer Labour government as they row back on any prior half progressive policy one after another. It will be the tories with potentially less gimmicks, and if thats sufficient for you....then so be it, you will be more than satisfied for that brief Labour tenure, before it invariably rotates back to the blue team when one Labour scandal becomes too much for even the Murdoch media to forgive. I would laugh though if Sunak did manage to win even at the next election. Shocked, but it would be a hilarious "karma always comes to collect" moment.
 
 
On Sat 30 Sep at 9:09pm Nevillman wrote:
I still don't know what are progressive policies
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On Sat 30 Sep at 9:57pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Massive redistribution of income and wealth, much bigger investment in public services and public sector staff, re-nationalising industries, free healthcare and education, including further and higher ed, universal basic income, reforms on employment laws, stronger workers protections, reverse draconian anti-trade union and protesting laws, totally reform drug policy including de-criminalisation of recreational drugs and a focus on investing in renewable energy. Those are just for starters. Higher taxes for the 5% i'm afraid. You knew it was coming.

Basically, reverse Thatcherism greed of pandering to the minority elites, and actually offer something remotely resembling an egalitarian society. Its as if the elites think they could have made their massive wealth without a relatively educated workforce and healthy customer marketplace.
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On Sun 1 Oct at 11:58am Nevillman wrote:
"trots of old" was not intended as an insult or smear. Just an accurate description of people who want things to be so bad that it will lead to serious change. That is exactly what you appeared to be wanting. I suspect I know a lot more about the views and actions of Trotsky, Marx and Blair than you do. Your ignorance of even when Blair was in office has already been demonstrated. Your glee at the prospect of starmer failing I'm afraid also gives a lot away about your views which I do not share.
I agree with many of the policies you say are progressive. Promising higher taxes is a good way to lose elections which you know a lot about. A future labour government will have to be much more subtle. I disagree on universal basic income for the time being, renationalising (sadly much too expensive. It would be like investing in a new infrastructure. Any additional taxes raised should go on education and health), unspecified increases in public services (what specifically) and reversing all union legislation.
Totally agree that a less selfish society would be good and we should work towards it. Not sure how to achieve this off the top of my head.
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On Sun 1 Oct at 12:57pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Its not an accurate description at all, because I don't want things to get bad, they just are. It has nothing to do with me why things are bad, i can only keep saying "i told you so" when the same polices are pursued time and time again, and against the will of progressives and indeed other large chunks of the population. I'm not voting for Rishi Sunak, so its not like i'm encouraging a tory government and i will have no glee at seeing Starmers government inevitably fail as it will ultimately come back to bite and haunt future Labour leaders who might not be as weak and establishment as Starmer is.

Also, where was my ignorance on Blair demonstrated? I seem to be quite well informed on the guy, hence why it would feel totally bizarre condoning his premiership. I'm sure there are still some admirers of Blair out there like yourself, who gleefully gloss over his greatest failings, but i am not one of them, and on the balance of good/bad, Blair comes out as an epic stain on Britain and the Labour Party. Its a good thing we can at least say it was "New Labour" as a caveat to ensure there is no confusion, but that tends to get lost when the media want to spin in as a blanket blame on Labour.

I already stated that the tax rises wouldn't affect 95% of the population, and only impact the top 5% of earners in the UK. If that 5% sways elections that much, then we have to ask ourselves if we live in a Democracy, that is influenced so dramatically by that minority elite? As for our privatised industries, some of these are now in the hands of state-controlled companies from Europe, China, middle east etc....this makes no sense whatsoever. Feels like we're just paying rent for our own services from them, when we could just own it like we used to (and like other countries do). Thatcherites be Thatcherites though
 
 
On Sun 1 Oct at 7:31pm Nevillman wrote:
"we get another Tory in power, we might get a decent opposition". Kind of Trotsky I think.
You demonstrated your ignorance of Blair by saying that he was pm during the credit crisis and your attempt to reduce his ten years of power to "toxic".
With renationalising, you have to buy them back. That means ultimately raising tax to pay for that. Never heard that it could be achieved by extra tax on 5% of payers. Only realistic option is regulating them properly.
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On Sun 1 Oct at 8:16pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Hmmm, i think you're rather reaching and being highly pedantic on the Blair point - but i totally understand why when your arguments FOR Blair are so flimsy and you're attempting to defend the record of a war criminal. We could address that quickly though, as it would be disingenuous to imply that when he left office in June 2007 and handed over to Gordon Brown, only for Northern Rock to stop customers withdrawing their money in August the same year, to lay it all on poor old Gordon (sounds more like his mate dumped him in it)! I think you have to really blame the deregulation of banks in the years lead up to the crash under both Blair and Brown, and with a fully willing Tory opposition happily voting these throughout the 2000s. Its certainly not Jeremy Corbyns fault, or the trade unions, or climate protesters. Can't even blame Diane Abbott for that one.

Yes, renationalising is an initial expensive outlay, which potentially requires additional borrowing, and its not particularly cheap to borrow at the moment, unlike in previous years and decades. But we can't keep kicking the can down the road only for subsequent governments to miss the boat and use "its too expensive" as another excuse. I think Corbyns train re-nationalising plan was phased anyway when the contracts basically ran their course they would then be fully public owned as the contracts would no longer go out to tender. I seem to recall he was going to bring the water companies back into public ownership as well. Again, probably quite expensive sounding at the time, but given the disastrous effects to our coastlines and water supplies in recent years under greedy private ownership (again, many foreign corporations and states such as Kuwait having a piece of it). This was going to also be subsidised on taxing the top 5% of the country higher, and raising corporation taxes. Maybe its unrealistic to think that would cover the costs, but what are the consequences for failing to act?

 
 
On Sun 1 Oct at 8:41pm Nevillman wrote:
The reason for the credit crisis goes back to cheap credit in America. Most people were completely unaffected by the whole thing.
I agree on taking back the rail system when the franchises come up. I don't think any come up for a few years though. Water has been estimated to cost 90 billion to buy. It is buying the whole water and sewage system. That is 1500 for every person in the country. A lot of money that could be spent a lot better elsewhere.
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On Sun 1 Oct at 9:53pm Green Sleeves wrote:
And yet the financial crisis cost the UK taxpayers billions, and caused many companies to go bust, creating thousands more redundancies across multiple sectors and caused Labour, and the subsequently the tories, to cut public spending.

90bn is an interesting estimate though, you could say it is quite eye-WATERING. ahem. Yes, that sounds a lot compared to what Thatcher sold it off at in 1989. Another brilliant tory legacy, bad business and raw sewage. Somehow i think when it comes to an industry as vital as water, a government really should be stepping in. I wonder if it would have been 90bn to renationalise them in 1997 and when money wasn't as tight. If we can't afford to buy them back, then regulate the absolute 5hit out of them, so that they will either have to operate on behalf on this countries best interest, rather than the Kuwait-y shareholders profits.

I'm going to start a new party....."The New Greens". Legalise weed and tax the hell out of it to put back into clearing up Thatcherism mess. I read Canada made $2bn in tax revenues last year from the plant from legal sales. A country with half the population. Probably will save the NHS a few quid as well, and cheer a few more people up. Except Tom Pain.
 
 
On Mon 2 Oct at 11:34am Nevillman wrote:
Labour wrongly got blamed for the credit crisis and the Tories used it as an excuse to cut government spending.
90bn is an estimate I have seen. Could be more or less but a lot anyway. I agree that it should have never been sold off and needs much tighter regulation. The shareholders should not be making profits from what from a sewage point of view are failing companies. Maybe it could have been renationalised in 1997. It would still have meant more government spending on that and not something else.
Good luck with your weed party. It would be interesting to see what happened to the price of it if it was legalised and taxed. I'm afraid you might well have picked another electoral liability as your main policy though.
 
 
On Mon 2 Oct at 1:39pm Green Sleeves wrote:
I don't think legalising cannabis is anywhere near an election vote liability as you suggest. Compared to what as well?? Are the offshore barges for migrants more popular, or perhaps the Rwanda policy? Hmm. Polling is showing a majority now in favour of decriminalisation of cannabis, and its not like its a radical policy anymore given the successful legalisation across many countries around the world, and those tax receipts tend to be incredibly appealing to countries that keep whining about not having enough money to spend on public services. I know its an old example now, but Colorado basically funded their elementary school budget from the proceeds of tax revenue from weed. That was when it was first rolled out years ago. Point is I don't think cannabis is a make or break issue anymore.

Blair and Brown shouldn't be wholly blamed but they do bear some responsibility. The tories blaming them is a bit rich considering they supported the deregulations. It was people like John McDonnell who were fighting against it.
 
 
On Mon 2 Oct at 4:40pm Nevillman wrote:
You may be right about public opinion on legalising cannabis. I expect most people don't really care one way or another. It's always been more of a personal liberty issue for me. I just don't see what it's got to do with the government what anyone puts in their body. Do the police still arrest people for consuming it or is it becoming legalised by the backdoor method of just not doing anything about it?
No idea what most people think about barges or Rwanda. It wouldn't surprise me though if many are just pleased to think that the government are trying to do something.
The banks were private companies and not government controlled public bodies. The government has a duty to prevent the public from being ripped off but beyond that it was up to the banks how they operated. They took up the CDUs and should have known they were dodgy. The bit that annoyed me was that the shareholders of the banks didn't lose everything as they should have done as their company failed and most of the top dogs were still there at the end.
 
 
On Mon 2 Oct at 7:15pm Green Sleeves wrote:
I suspect some arrests are still made for use/possession, but typically you will just get a warning, confiscate the herb and send you on your way. Of course that's never happened to me, but that is because I am white and middle class. Either way, billions are going to the black market instead of to the exchequer. I think they are missing a trick over nothing and we have precedent now, so it's not like we are some sort of pioneers by allowing people to enjoy a flower.

The Rwanda and barge policies are definitely aimed as red meat for the anti immigrant section of our society. Which is not insignificant, but I can't imagine anyone thinking it's been a roaring success so far, the boats are still coming. Don't think anyone aside from Braverman or Priti Patel have actually been to Rwanda yet, but I'm sure they've done their due diligence....ahem. its certainly no financial net contributor like the legalisation of cannabis....and yet its always us lefties that get labelled as those that can't be trusted with money!! Let's just spaff it all on distant offshore inhumane detention centres in countries plagued with corruption and just recovering from one of the worst civil wars of the past 50 years.
 
 
On Mon 2 Oct at 8:45pm Nevillman wrote:
Dreadful that the drug market encourages criminals rather than business people. Not sure about taxing it. Won't people just buy it as now to avoid the tax. How do they do it in Canada?
Are the Tories worried about losing the right wing vote to a further right party. I think the labour party is seen as a party of higher tax and many people don't like paying it. They like good health service and education as well but are too stupid to fully grasp that.
It's unlikely that this investment in Rwanda would do much for the people there I suspect apart from enrich a few.
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On Mon 2 Oct at 10:34pm Green Sleeves wrote:
No black market can ever be wiped out entirely i suspect, and yea in places like Canada, there is still sufficient demand that it exists there despite the availability of legal weed in recent years. The black market will attempt to undercut, and that is what happens in places like Canada. I suppose its a bit like the availability of black-market tobacco and booze here, if its cheap enough, there will still be some people happy to purchase it at a discount. For most people though, paying the extra for legally obtained, regulated and arguably "safer" is the more desired option. Governments shouldn't get too greedy with taxation of recreational and medicinal cannabis, as that in itself would of course encourage the black market to thrive or find a gap, so a fine balance has to be met. Still beats a pure 100% black market though, when 0 tax revenues are made, resources wasted having to continue policing it, and a potential goldmine of an industry kept only within the grasp of criminals.
 
 
On Tue 3 Oct at 2:19pm Nevillman wrote:
Do you really think that trade union laws should be repealed so that train workers, doctors or whoever can go on strike without notice?
 
 
On Tue 3 Oct at 7:14pm Green Sleeves wrote:
I ultimately support the right of workers to withdraw their labour, usually it means they don't get paid anyway, so they're not often doing it without consequences or risks. The way Unions have been portrayed by the media and subsequent governments since the Thatcher years has been nothing short of disgraceful. "Smashing the Unions" was a very successful right-wing tag line and to demonise them, and its sad so many people fell for it, instead of focusing the ire on company bosses who aren't paying their staff properly or providing a safe workplace, we allow the media to tell us how angry we are at the strikers for being lazy or overly demanding and don't hold the bosses of companies to account. JUST DON'T UPSET THE RICH PEOPLE WHATEVER YOU DO!!

While most aren't part of a Union in the UK workforce (and that is unfortunate for them), the vast majority are just employees with a limited set of rights, rather than chief execs and business owners who have all the power and leverage. So yea, i think any new government should look at all the trade union laws imposed, and address the absolutely most counter-productive and punitive measures. We need to look carefully at who we blame or demonise in our society. There does seem to be a shift though in attitudes towards strikes, with many supporting industrial action, as perhaps they probably know they could be in their position at some point, especially with the cost of living squeeze.
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 7:18am Nevillman wrote:
I couldn't agree more on the right to withdraw labour and that is allowed. I know you will find it difficult to believe but I'm the past unions have abused that right. I also know you will not believe that I could have formed that opinion from observation rather than because I have swallowed the daily mail line. They have been demonised but have also at times behaved irresponsibly.
I agree that there has at times been one set of rules for the bosses and another for the unions. It's hard to know what can be done to make it less acceptable for bosses to reward themselves how they have. Equally irresponsible.
I don't think it would serve any useful purpose for workers to suddenly be able to call a strike. The rail workers for instance should at least have to continue giving notice of a strike rather than calling one for the next day.
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 10:20am Green Sleeves wrote:
The corparate media took the perception of trade unions being "too powerful", and threw everything at them to restore what they felt was the right balance. "Crisis? What crisis?" And "winter of discontent" both terms from The Sun and that led to Thatchers election win.

Maybe the trade unions were too powerful and were the enemy of the people, but it also appears even back then the media were also way too influential, and nothing really has changed from their perspective. Negative media and fear seems to always win. Sometimes they even admit it, like the headline "it was the sun that won it!". We need to regulate our media far more than trade unions in my opinion. The print media which is predominantly right wing has been way too influential despite reducing readership. We have had government after government courting these people.
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 10:46am Nevillman wrote:
I was there in 1979 and the winter of discontent wasn't just media hype. Rubbish was piling up in the streets. Bodies were unburied. The unions did contribute to Thatcher's victory as even the labour government did not appear able to control them.
"Crisis what crisis" was as I recall a headline when Callaghan went to a summit in the Caribbean and was seen swimming while there was a currency crisis in the days of fixed exchange rates.
Much as I dislike a lot of the media I'm afraid that controlling it is one step from a dictatorship. You cannot tell a free press what to write. If enough people wanted a left wing press there would be more left wing papers.
On the whole I think the TV stations are quite fair and sometimes too balanced.
The "sun what won it" was against Kinnock. Another below par labour candidate I'm afraid.
Bigger question is why are many people so stupid and right wing. You can't blame education. Most teachers are to the left of centre.
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 12:24pm Green Sleeves wrote:
" The Daily Mail explains, ‘Referencing the 1970s will trigger uncomfortable memories of the strikes that shook the country that decade, culminating in the winter of discontent when rubbish was left on streets and bodies went unburied.’ The evocation of the Winter of Discontent, a series of strikes over 34 years ago, is still common in British political culture.

I appreciate your almost verbatim account of 1979 with this article, but I think that trade unions back then still disproportionately took the blame, and its not like when Thatcher came in, everything was fixed. That was clearly not the case. Blame the Trade unions was just a policy that worked effectively with the help of awful rags like the sun and daily mail dogpiling in . People lapped it up and just like brexit, it was Turkeys voting for Christmas.

Yes, Kinnock lost to Major in 1992, because the Sun had the Tories back still. Then they switched to Tony Blair in 1997 because they bought into his superficial thatcherite BS like you and many others did and were ultimately the "Uniparty". The Sun then returned to backing Cameron after they were able to pin the blame on the financial crash and iraq on Labour. Right-wing print media has been highly influential, even under diminishing numbers of papers sold. I don't understand why they are still taken so seriously despite actually representing so few these days. Its not about telling a media what to write, its about having balance so that not everyone is exposed to just purely toxic headlines. The television news media is heavily regulated, and as a result, has some checks and balances in place thankfully (although GB News does push the limits).....the print media is trash and unregulated by comparison, and yet its still taken somewhat seriously by governments. Right-wing rags dominate in that space because it tends to be mainly for older folks, and it disproportionately affects the overall news cycles with negativity and basically ratcheting up fear. The Daily Fail is Britains current top selling newspaper with 683,000 per day. I'm pretty sure the demographic is quite predictable, yep.....average age of reader, 56, 83% homeowners, 70% own homes outright and 63% "upper and middle" class etc etc. I'm suppose you could well fit into that category, so i suppose their represented narrative might not be quite as concerning to you, but they seem to court a lot of attention from the governing parties. These are people with lack of imaginations, so can only see the past as "written by the winners", can only see a leader and a loser, and the alternative would have been unthinkable. That is perhaps why your memories, sound almost suspiciously word for word with right-wing sources.

 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 5:23pm Nevillman wrote:
You're absolutely right green. I have no memory of 1979 at all but looked it up in my collection of daily mails. " bodies were unburied" to describe a situation in which they weren't burying dead people is such an obvious lift from the mail I am ashamed of myself.
I was totally behind labour at the time but even I can see that the unions didn't give them much of a chance in 1979. Thatcher didn't just get in on Union bashing though. I didn't follow the papers at the time as it was certain she was going to win and I couldn't stand the thought of being in the country at the same time.
I think it is naive to just blame the sun for kinnocks defeat. He should have won but didn't come over as a credible candidate. He would have been preferable to major of course. All he achieved was getting the radio times to list itv programmes.
Blair would have won without the sun. They just wanted to appear to support the winning candidate.
You exaggerate the influence of the press. You appear to take it seriously but I don't know anyone else who does. Presumably it provides you with a good excuse. 683,000 out of an electorate of 46 million is not many. Even I, who does fit the daily mail demographic, never reads it. My mother read it but never voted Tory. It appeals to some older people for other reasons presumably.
I'm afraid that seeing Corbyn as a potentially effective prime minister only deprived of leading the country to greatness because of the daily mail does require an imagination that I clearly lack.
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 7:01pm Green Sleeves wrote:
That is exactly why i said it, the DM is read by a small group of people, yet their owner and journalists have massive disproportionate influence and power with any government, and rarely do they impact policy for the better. This is the problem, the politicians in westminster and whitehall are far too closely connected with the right-wing media and their headlines often can pave way for a specific agenda. You basically HAVE to appeal to them to become Prime Minister it would seem, judging by previous efforts and with the likes of Murdoch and Blair smooshing it up.

I get the feeling that Kinnock being bald, ginger and welsh probably count heavily against him, we are that dumb as a society. Probably similar with Corbyn - his dress sense was a major gripe for some and do recall the right-wing press using this line of attack (among many others). I do understand the shallow nature of humans, i just hoped that in the 21st century, most of us might have grown up past that.

As for Corbyn, i think he would have been easily as effective a prime minister as anyone else in the past 40 years, and certainly ever since....although that bar is criminally low. Our leaders have almost universally been corrupt grifters and dishonest charlatans, just to varying degrees. That is quite depressing, and yet we seem to ridicule the honest ones that tried to make a difference.
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 7:39pm Nevillman wrote:
You appear to be saying that the government implement what the papers say. Examples please.
I was being polite and not saying the reason Kinnock lost but I agree with you wholeheartedly. Labour were in the lead in the polls until Kinnock held his victory rally before the election. Never had he looked as bald ginger and Welsh.
I truly wish Corbyn had been prime minister. I disagree on the corrupt mostly. They may have gained subsequently but only one really corrupt.
I would be very surprised if starmer was corrupt.
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 8:28pm Green Sleeves wrote:
The likes of Paul Dacre and Rupert Murdoch have had enormous influence on UK politics, including their associates like Rebekah Brookes. The number of private meetings between these media oligarchs and government prime ministers, leaders and officials is staggering. I don't believe for one moment they were meeting just to ask them what their next manifesto would look like....this is not even close to being unreliable Tom Pain esque conspiracy either. It would be foolish and naive to think it wasn't going on.

I suspect Starmer won't be blatantly corrupt in the same manner as Boris Johnson (he was always a crook), but given the number of policy u turns, and now happy to lead the Uniparty back into power and throw anyone he sees in his way under the bus in the process. That doesn't inspire me with confidence that he wouldnt be easily bought. But we must go with the electorate, they have been proved correct with their judgement at every election after all....
 
 
On Wed 4 Oct at 8:49pm Nevillman wrote:
So is your gripe with the media not that they influence people to vote Tory usually but that they tell the government what policies to adopt?
The choice at an election comes down to two which is actually decided by a few people, many of whom are stupid. Starmer must be pragmatic. Sometimes you have to change your mind. It is politics.


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