Solidarity With Jeremy Corbyn.
Through word and deed, Starmer has proved our members correct after our survey and subsequent conference decision to disaffiliate from the party we helped come into being. Today’s Labour Party bears no resemblance to the party its founders envisaged.
In opposing the need to campaign for £15 and raising the aspiration of working people at his 2021 conference despite speaking in favour at our McStrike action picket line in 2019, of abandoning all of his leadership pledges, Starmer has proven himself to be no different from any Tory politician that we as a movement have been campaigning against for centuries.
His words ring hollow with every relaunch, his commitments are meaningless as he abandons every one he makes. After causing the collapse in the Labour vote with his second referendum nonsense in 2019 instead of sticking to the party’s commitment to honour the referendum held in 2016, and at the general election in 2017 he set the party on a path to devastation. Some may say, it was a deliberate act to ensure a Johnson victory and positioning himself as the man to lead our Labour party and the movement.
Reading many articles and biographies from that period it, indeed some would argue he was more interested in winning control of the leadership of the party rather than working to elect a Labour government led by Jeremy Corbyn. There are many speeches Starmer has made since becoming leader most aimed at assuring the already powerful that he will not make any reforms that change the inequalities in our country. In some cases, going even further to the right than this current wretched Tory government.
His failure to support striking workers in contrast to his love bombing of CEOs and corporations that employ union-busting tactics demonstrates that instead of putting the interests of the people first, he aims to replace the Tories as the party of the already rich and powerful. Starmer’s rise to the position of leader on the back of pitching his politics in the campaign firmly on the left shows the dishonesty of the man and the cult that surrounds him. In a recent speech he praised and used a speech delivered by Thatcher aimed at the wrongly convicted and imprisoned trade unionists, (Shrewsbury 24) this deliberate use of that content demonstrated that not only is he untrustworthy, he has no empathy for our movement.
His use of Thatcher was deliberate it was sending a clear message that Labour is now a safe place for those that supported Thatcher’s ideology, that has devastated the communities across the UK. It was a clear signal that Labour offer no threat to the established order and intends to continue to maintain the restrictions that have shackled organised Labour since the early 80s and have led to the widening gap we now see causing so much hardship across our society.
As a union our members told us they were worried about his direction of travel and their worries have been proven to be correct. I’m sure many union members across our movement will be looking at his actions alongside his words and draw the same conclusion. I understand the ‘yes but Labour are our only option and better than the Tories’ argument. But the same was said when we created the Labour party, when the labouring classes had an attachment to the Liberals, but any union leader who supports this charlatan needs to ask themselves will one more push for a Labour government following a Tory agenda deliver for members.
We should be under no illusion that a Starmer government is as scary a prospect for our rights and liberties as any right-wing Tory one, look at his actions. The treatment of his members and supporters demonstrates it’s not about people but about him and his future, he has thrown more Jewish members out of the party than any other leader in its entire history, yet he demonizes his predecessor alleging he was an anti-Semite, yet at the TULO meetings I attended with Starmer he said that was not what he believed.
Starmer is no threat to wealth or the status quo. His job on their behalf of the established order is to ensure a Corbyn-like figure can never again be elected to a position of power, 2017 was a real shock with Jeremy nearly snatching victory despite the onslaught from a powerful media and a destabilising force from its own MPs and employees.
Both inside and outside of the party, they feared a politician that can’t be bought, that wouldn’t continue the policies of the rigged game. And a party full of careerists MPs of course are going to work on that agenda because, for the first time under Corbyn, they felt their self-importance being taken away as the party moved to a more democratic machine that led to people becoming the main priority and members of the party being able to play an integral part.
So the importance of making sure any flame of hope is extinguished is priority No1 which is why we have seen the deliberate demonizing of the left and Jeremy Corbyn, who lit those fires of hope. Starmer and his cultish NEC took a motion, the motion he took to bar Jeremy had no inclusion of him being anti-sematic, yet our airwaves are full of his shadow cabinet and media commentators claiming that’s the reason behind his barring.
This is untrue, they have voted on a motion to stop Jeremy from standing as a Labour MP in a seat he has held for some 40 years, denying the right of his CLP to select their candidate of choice. That is not the act of a party that is supposed to be democratic and with no right offered to defend himself or right of appeal, it shows how we could be treated by an authoritarian Labour party if it wins an election with Starmer at its head.
The justification for barring him is that he lost the last election and is to be made totally responsible, something that’s never happened with previous leaders;
Blair lost 5 million votes and is still highly regarded despite leading the country into an illegal war.
Serial loser Kinnock was promoted to the Lord’s.
Labour biggest ever loser of seats (90) Brown is an advisor to the Labour party after stepping down.
Disastrous Ed (stone) Miliband is in the shadow cabinet.
But what the decision exposes is the lack of understanding of collectivism at the heart of this New Thatcherite Labour Party, who fail to grasp they played a huge part in the disaster that was the 2019 election and if Corbyn shouldn’t stand, then neither should they.
As a union we understand that no one man or woman can change anything, it needs all of us to be involved, we recognise that when we have victories, they are ours and when we have defeats they are also ours.
Jeremy Corbyn never wanted to be leader of the Party, but he stood and the membership elected him, he inspired millions and encouraged people back and inspired others into politics, he never shied away as other leaders do from making it clear he was a Trade unionist, he never and has not stopped supporting our movement before he was leader of the Party, he supported our union as leader, and he is still supporting our union today with help on our Samworth organising campaign.
To quote Martin Luther King ‘In the end we will not remember the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends’.
Whatever path Jeremy chooses we will support his decision and if he stands as an Independent we will support his campaign.
The National President on behalf of the BFAWU Executive Council