A party in desperate need of change

Barrie Cunning, former Scottish Labour candidate for Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, says today’s disunited Labour Party is failing to provide effective opposition to a weak and divided government.

 

Angry, disappointed, anxious, disillusioned. Words that have become all too familiar when describing the current political situation in which the UK finds itself. Like thousands of people up and down the country, I too am angry, at Conservative politicians putting the Conservative Party before the country, putting personal ambition ahead of what’s in the best interests of the country, and ultimately showing complete and utter contempt to the British electorate.

But I’m also disappointed in and concerned about the direction in which the Labour Party seems to be going.

Three years ago, Jeremy Corbyn won the Labour Party leadership with an overwhelming majority. There is no denying that in 2015 Jeremy enthused a large section of the party membership and attracted both newcomers and former members of the Labour Party. To many, Jeremy spoke a language of socialism that was akin to previous generations, and he promised a new kind of politics, with greater party member participation underpinned by the promise of straight talking honest politics.

Three years on and it’s a very different story. Brexit is dominating the political narrative, the Conservative government is divided, ministers are resigning, and the Conservative Party is putting ideology before the interests of the country.

As the official opposition, first and foremost we have a duty to the country and to the people of Britain. If we were an effective opposition we would be holding the government to account, highlighting their failures, promoting a strong Labour vision, and we would be significantly ahead of the Tories in the polls.

Instead we have a Labour Party that is divided beyond recognition, that is void of policy, not comfortable with addressing the big political issues of the day and where solidarity is a term best used in a historical context. In short this is not good enough. This is not the party I joined nor the party I recognise, but I am hopeful that things can get better.

The Labour Party has a well-documented history of the tensions between the moderate and left-wing factions, which we recognise and accept. But today’s Labour Party is a fierce battleground between progressives and the left-wing, resulting in what many describe as a hostile takeover by the hard left of the party.

The reality is that Militant is alive and kicking, with Labour MPs who express an opinion different to Jeremy Corbyn being threatened with deselection, and party members who express a different opinion to Jeremy Corbyn being accused of being part of a conspiracy to undermine him and keep the Tories in power.

I’m concerned and fearful of the direction the Labour Party is going in. As a party we pride ourselves on tackling social justice and promoting equality, respect and dignity, but we are rapidly becoming a party of intolerance, where debate is shut down and members are too fearful to express an opinion at local meetings. We have a leadership team that is inept in outlining the party’s position on Brexit, and hellbent on controlling the party machine and structure, even if it puts us at odds with the mood of the country.

The final straw for many members is the ongoing issue of the party’s reluctance to adopt the full definition with examples of anti-Semitism by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), adopted widely across the world as well as by the Crown Prosecution Service.

I want to make it perfectly clear that I don’t think Jeremy Corbyn is an anti-Semite or a racist, but I do think the whole issue has been grossly mishandled. Jeremy and his team should have foreseen the likely reaction from not adopting the complete IHRA definition. It is entirely understandable and reasonable that the Jewish community came out in force criticising the Labour Party when this decision was taken.

This issue should have been addressed immediately by adopting the full definition and reassuring the Jewish community that the Labour Party is still the party for them. Instead, Jeremy and his team let the issue linger, which further fuelled speculation about Jeremy’s position on Israel and in turn dominated the media agenda, and as a result alienated a section of society that has been supportive of our movement from day one.

This is completely unacceptable, and the reaction from Jewish Labour MP Margaret Hodge is understandable, but in all seriousness it should never have got to this point. Words alone will not heal the division and the mistrust that this issue has created with the Jewish community, but now is the time for Jeremy to show real leadership, reach out to the Jewish community including Jewish Labour MPs, adopt the IHRA definition on anti-Semitism in full, address party members concerns over Brexit and move on to fighting the Tories.

As the official opposition we are duty bound to hold the government to account and to demonstrate to the country that we can replace the incumbent administration. The current in-fighting in the Labour Party is proving to have the opposite effect. Without power there is very little we can do to change the lives of the people of this country. We need a renewed focus on winning power and replacing the Tories at the next general election.

In a recent conversation with former Labour leader Neil Kinnock, Neil summed up perfectly what the Labour Party needs to do:

“Labour must use its strengths to widen the appeal of practical, patriotic democratic socialism because, without that breadth, we will not get the power to secure change.

This means that leaders and members must focus on winning power FOR Labour and be less occupied with securing power IN Labour. We’ve made no solid advance since 2017 despite a shambolic, inept and divided Tory Party. We have to make a convincing appeal that goes well beyond current support and wins converts. A clear rejection of the Tory Brexit smash up and strong, vocal support for the usable, job and investment saving alternative of continued European Economic Area membership would be right for our country and for Labour.”

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44 thoughts on “A party in desperate need of change

  1. The Labour Party UK has gone from being an undemocratic Blairite Parliamentary Labour Party controlled by the MPs to a democratic Corbyn Labour Party controlled by the members. It’s a shame to say that the Blairite MPs have undermined Corbyn and his policies at every opportunity and to make matters worse they work in tandem with the mainstream media Tory newspapers and TV interviews and appearances at every opportunity. It’s my view that for the previous reason’s that the Scottish Labour Section should breakaway from the Labour Party UK and form a new Independent Scottish Labour Party and campaign for an Independent Scotland. The Labour Party UK infighting can only be resolved by the Blairite MPs splitting up the Labour Party UK and starting an new Centrist Party UK.

    1. Labour has always faced a hostile media, but the current furore over anti-Semitism was completely avoidable regardless of the Tory press – I’m afraid I think Jeremy has made it too easy for his opponents by not adopting the complete IHRA definition with the examples. This nothing to do with “Blairism”.

      1. I agree that IHRA should be adopted that aside the Blairites are still on the warpath trying to undermine Corbyn.

        1. I should have said previously that it’s my view that the IHRA should be adopted by the Labour Party, although to do so would have to be by the means of a democratic vote of the members. After all this is a now a member led democratic party and the members should decide on the policy.

      2. IHRA is a document that promotes Apartheid. Corbyn was right to avoid it and the whole anti Semitism smear campaign is just that an unjustified smear campaign mostly directed at those who attack the Israeli Governments treatment of Palestinians and not at any actual cases of anti Jewish Semitism.
        There are many Jewish groups that oppose IHRA and even they are attacked by its supporters and accused of being the “Wrong type of Jew”.
        Its the Blairites in Labour who are using this Tory derived smear to attack the Labour left. Jim Murphy a prime example.
        Corbyn and his ideals are the least corrupt part of Labour which says it all about the rest of Labour. Where Corbyn falls down is in not implementing his ideals in Wales leaving him wide open to justifiable claims that he is all rhetoric and no substance. That’s Corbyns failure. He is unconvincing as a socialist leaving voters on the left i.e the VAST Majority of voters across the whole of the UK unable to trust Labour with their vote.
        Labour are still seen as being nothing but another Tory party which is why Labour cant make headway against the worst UK Government in modern history.

  2. Barrie
    Your blog is another attack on the party .
    Corbyn was elected by the members and then elected twice again
    Have we really given him a chance to lead .
    The members are not the ones who have let the party down
    It was the parade of MPS who headed for the tv cameras every time they thought they had a grievance
    Labour MPS escorting each other to a meeting and others holding a counter demonstration .
    All in front of the tv cameras .
    How about demonstrating against the shop and business closures and job losses that have gone with it.
    I put the tv on one night and got told I am in an anti-Semitic party .
    Really I had to ask some one what it is .
    Yes it should have been dealt with that week as usual we have let it rumble on.
    The labour party members have passionate beliefs its both a fault and a bonus buts its how I hope it stays.
    I never thought I would see labour MPS voting with the Government
    When there was a chance we could have forced a no confidence motion
    Might not have won it but these guys stabbed me in the back with that
    Then we have 3 Jewish newspapers attacking us same front page headline same day who organized that
    Then Jim Murphy takes to the telly to promote an article he paid for attacking us.
    Did he mention he led Scottish Labour to electoral disaster no
    Corbyn was the leader who was supposed to resign at the last election
    Instead we gained seats in Scotland
    The Liberal and UKIP leaders had to go The PM lost her majority and one of her team fainted when he heard the exit poll result
    The SNP lost MPS and Voters and Indy got booted out the park until October at the latest

    1. Labour Party UK members who want to implement the IHRA like Jim Murphy should campaign within the Labour Party to get the policy adopted. At the moment the Tories are laughing at the Labour Party UK who are being destroyed from within by the Blairite die hards and the Tory mainstream media are loving the constant stream of backstabbers who are queuing up to write in newspapers and appear on TV. If ever there was a lesson to be learnt it is the need for party discipline. Take a leaf out of SNP book who are like the Ferrari of British political parties they are disciplined tow the party line and don’t break ranks an example for all to aspire too.

      1. They will laugh even harder if Labour allows the Tory media to direct it in whatever direction they choose especially when its signing up to support for Apartheid.
        Tories love the fact that Labour are still divided between the Blairite Tories and the Corbyn left although we’re not seeing much evidence of actual Corbyn left ideals in practice.
        The love using the Blairites to help keep them in Government and of course the Blairites are all too happy to oblige because in reality they would rather keep a right wing extremist Tory Government in power than allow and empowered Socialist ideology to take over.
        The SNP are successful not because they are disciplined within but because they DELIVER Social Democracy in Scotland instead of fascist right wing austerity. Something Labour used to fight for.

      2. Agree with all but your last bit Ted. Once the SNP were all Stepford Wives but now, as is seen by the Yes demo at their Party conference, they are going the way of all governing parties

    2. Labour gained seats in Scotland because they did a deal with the Tories in Scotland to campaign together against the SNP in the same way they collaborate at local council level. A deal that kept Corbyn out of number 10 and allowed Teresa May to limp on supported now by an empowered Irish sectarian extremist terrorist affiliated political cult.
      Its says it all when people like you pat yourselves on the back for that night of infamy. It says it all about whats left of the Labour voters in Scotland who can actually switch happily to vote Tory for tactical purposes.
      And still Labour has the gall to refer back to 1979 with the fake rhetoric of blaming the SNP for Thatcher.
      Still far too many in Labour in Scotland who would rather live under London Tory rule than an Independent Scottish Labour Government.
      Makes all the Labour in Scotland derived anti Tory rhetoric meaningless hypocritical and empty.
      Those seats you gained with the help of the Tories will be lost to you again as will most of the Tory seats they gained thanks to Labour tactical voting and SNP voter apathy because of what Labour and the Tories did with those seats and the absolute failure to represent Scotlands interests during the Brexit debacle.
      Labour didn’t boot Indy into the long grass the FM set October as the date she would make her decision to go or kick the decision into the long grass.
      Its this level of self induced deceit and delusion that has Labour nowhere in politics.

      1. SNP did a deal with the Tories in Salmond’s first administration. At LG level, there are several SNP/Tory deals e.g. East Ayrshire

  3. Dave Ted I agree with both of you
    I will say it again Barrie I am using as an example Poundworld gone thousands of jobs with it . Matalan Mothercare M and S all in liquidation or in trouble small businesses in trouble Aulds bakeries went into liquidation 4 shops closed without warning 26 staff lost their jobs .
    Why are we not fighting on that we used to fight and demonstrate for jobs
    The DWP is in a mess I am speaking from experience they write to you for documents you send them then months later you get a reminder you phone the DWP after at least a 32 min wait you get an operator who says its ok ignore we have your document then you get a letter because we did not receive your document we will stop your ESA the day after I got the letter
    Phone the DWP again . Operator said don’t worry letter was computer generated to cancel they will have to physically check the system .
    Wolverhampton Mail centre where mail is scanned into the system has that big a backlog staff are that overworked they are only checking the system for emergencies .
    I live in North Ayrshire the mail goes to Wolverhampton Mail handling Centre to be passed to Greenock .
    As a former candidate what are you doing about that .
    Or even politically this weeks weekend papers have people like Kenny Macaskill and others criticising Nicola over alleged dithering over Indy ref 2 timing
    Whats your view on that all of the above is what your blog should have been about

    1. Kind of points to the fact that Westminster is not fit for purpose and should NEVER be allowed to control Scotland eh?

  4. Mike thanks for your comments
    Where is your evidence that Labour did a deal with the Tories to campaign together in Scotland to keep the SNP out at the General Election .
    IT was the voters that did that by removing SNP MPS that’s what voters do its why its called an election .
    As I said where is your evidence we did a deal .
    Why did the FM drop her plan for another Indy ref after the Election it was not Labour who made her do that .
    She was the one who kicked it into the long grass called October .
    I think you have been reading to much Fake news .
    I can assure you no deals were done in Central Ayrshire at the election and we were not asked to and we would not have done so if asked
    Where is your evidence we were asked to if you cant produce evidence we were asked or told to its just another
    Labour bad piece and Fake News
    If you have taken part in any actual campaigning as I have you would find out very quickly the public will tell you very quickly what they think of your parties leaders your policies and they will tell you its local issues that concern them.
    Kenny Macaskill went into print to say less marching more campaigning
    Ian Macwhirter in the Sunday Herald claimed
    Peter Curran Indy Blogger said
    Its not the Brexit confusion that’s delaying Indy ref 2 its Nicola Sturgeon whose using the Brexit confusion to delay it.
    Is he correct.
    Another Question I would ask why October
    Could it be anything to do with conference season what will you do if she says not yet .
    The Leadership did not reckon with AUOB deciding to hold a rally at Holyrood October 6 Awkward if you are not going to do anything

    1. David the IndyRef2 decision is reaching boiling point by October it will be so much clearer on Brexit and an announcement will be inevitable. It’s my view that the decision will not be solely made because of Brexit but because lot’s of folks have bought into the idea that an independent Scotland would be a vibrant successful tolerant country. If the IndyRef2 is not announced in October l will copy the sasanachs and sprinkle sugar on my porridge.

    2. How about the FACT that both the Tories and Labour campaigned OPENLY against the SNP in Scotland and not each other using the exact same anti Independence rhetoric.
      How about the FACT that Labour didn’t even try to compete in SNP seats targeted by the Tories and vice versa?
      How about the FACT that the Tories and Labour OPENLY tactical vote with each other at local council level and then prop each other up in council boards.
      What Indyref plans were dropped? She sought and gained a mandate through Parliament based on the change in circumstance brought about by Brexit. We need to know and understand the extent of what Brexit is going to be before we can conduct a campaign for Indyref 2 based on the MANDATE for it.

      Not only do you have no evidence to back a claim that Indyref 2 has been dropped your claim flies in the face of all the evidence that points to the contrary. Bit hypocritical that.
      You initially said Labour forced the indyref 2 to be kicked into the long grass now you’re saying it was the FM so we can add self contradiction to the hypocrisy.
      Talk about creating your own fake news.

      The FMs position has been nothing but CONSISTENT. She hasn’t wavered or flip flopped or dance around any of the issues of Indyref or Brexit. She has ALWAYS maintained the Indyref 2 decision would be taken in October not July not August not September OCTOBER and here she is keeping to that timetable.

      And now you’re stupidly trying to tell us that AUOB is working against the Indyref movement. You’re spinning the worst level of absolute drivel because you’re completely divorced from any reality knowing reality wont cooperate with what you want to believe.
      Its that or you’re just being a troll.

  5. Barrie,
    You say that Neil Kinnockl “summed up perfectly what the Labour Party needs to do”:

    “Labour must use its strengths to widen the appeal of practical, patriotic democratic socialism because, without that breadth, we will not get the power to secure change.

    This means that leaders and members must focus on winning power FOR Labour and be less occupied with securing power IN Labour. …………………….”.

    Barrie, that is meaningless nonsense. Labour is split in two. Some members, Jim Murphy for example support apartheid Israel some oppose it. How can people with such opposing views work together?
    That is Labour’s problem.

  6. Barrie,
    Please type ‘UK Jewish MP: Israel acting like Nazis in Gaza’ into U Tube.
    Gerard Kauphman or Jim Murphy? Who do you believe?

  7. Say what you like about the New Labour years but at least they was successful during elections and had the perception of being in control.

    The current Labour party at UK level seems to be attempting to copy Scottish Labour since devolution, leading to what can only be described as the political equivalent of The Banter Years at Rangers post 2012.

    While Scottish Labour’s time in charge in the early years of devolution has some successful policies as a legacy, the majority of the public will remember the gaffes and scandals.

    The early signs of the Banter Years were evident in the Labour-Lib Dem administration following the sad death of Donald Dewar. But the Banter Years really kicked in after the 2007 election defeat.

    As Karl Marx said about first tragedy, then farce:

    2001 First Minister Henry McLeish caught on mic criticising colleagues including describing Scottish Secretary John Reid as “a patronising bastard”

    Resigned due to Officegate

    2001 Jack McConnell takes over as First Minister

    Introduces the slogan “Scotland: The best small country in the world.” to much media criticism

    2004 turns up for Tartan Week wearing a pinstripe kilt

    Sacks Frank McAveety over Piegate

    2007 Labour loses a national election in Scotland for the first time since 1955.

    2008 Wendy Alexander decries ‘Bring it On’ for an independence referendum only to be overruled by Gordon Brown

    Resigns over donation scandal

    2010 McAveety again gets his party into trouble over a mic switched on and has to resign as Convenor of the Scottish Parliament’s Public Petitions Committee for making comments about a woman in the gallery.

    2011 Iain Gray launches election campaign with a manifesto littered with typos and spelling mistakes and ends up running away from protestors into a sandwich chain.

    Nearly loses his own seat in the subsequent election and loses 7 Labour seats overall, the party’s worst election result in modern times.

    2014 After what should have been a triumphant moment for Scottish Labour, contributing the most part in successfully defeating the SNP led independence campaign, Johann Lamont resigns accusing the UK wide Labour party of treating Scottish Labour “like a branch office of London.”

    Appoint major figure of the referendum campaign, Jim Murphy, as leader despite not having a seat in Holyrood.

    2015 Murphy led Scottish Labour loses 40 of the 41 seats it was defending in General election and loses his own seat.

    Kezia Dugdale appointed as leader

    2016 Labour loses a third of its seats and got its lowest percentage of the vote in Scotland in 98 years, falling behind the Conservatives into 3rd place.

    2017 local elections, Labour lost over Council 130 seats losing control of Glasgow in the process and cementing position as 3rd party in Scotland.

    2017 General election despite regaining 6 seats from the SNP and a bigger share of the vote than expected Dugdale resigns later in the summer and ends up going on reality TV show I’m a Celebrity.

    Richard Leonard appointed new leader. So far the Corbyn led party seems to be doing most of the running in The Banter Years but still time for Leonard to make his mark.

    1. Fair play David. I’m an Aberdeen fan but good to have Rangers back in the top league. Never a dull moment!

      1. Thanks for your comment Drew
        Look what happens when I support
        Celtic for the night haha and papers and tv news saying a good old fashion row going on behind the scenes the player who was supposed to be injured refused to play maybe fake news haha
        Better wait for Rangers tomorrow night
        Thursday night Rangers on the wireless
        My pal Adam Todd copresenting Pole Position on Rocksport radio 8pm until 9pm
        Then Celeb Big Brother ch5 9pm
        Yes none of this love island rubbish for me .I am a BB fan haha

  8. I agree in part with a lot of what everyone says including Mike who got both barrels last night .
    The Labour Party members have conviction and beliefs and we argue for them with passion amongst ourselves and often in public its often a drawback and a bonus .
    We are being consumed by public squabbling over Anti Semitism Its the leadership and some MPS who are doing this .
    Ordinary members like me cant believe whats happening
    I asked 3 members of the public today all highly critical of all the parties 1 elderly couple pointed out its local things that matter to them it was heavy rain and the bus shelter had been removed for road works and not put back .Thought it would make things worse if I mentioned I think its because the road works are about to resume.
    The other guy a former male nurse was highly critical of the Internet believes its no longer fit for purpose to many news websites and the rightwing takeover of the internet he does not use Facebook or Twitter on Yahoo and You Tube .and before anyone says SNPBAD he is a SNP voter .who does not trust any of the parties

    1. I got 2 barrels of worthless self contradictory and hypocritical drivel. The Labour party have ZERO convictions or belief in anything but spewing whatever rhetoric they think will get them elected before doing nothing but giving the UK more of the same.
      The party of abstention and not opposition to Tory ideology.
      The party in power in Wales where every measurement of Government failure is highest anywhere in the UK.
      Wales where none of the rhetoric sees the light of day where none of the promises are delivered.
      Its why people like you do nothing but spew gibbering pish instead of conviction and meaningful ideas.
      Good luck trying to comeback with that attitude.

  9. We could and should be campaigning on jobs Homebase to close 10 Scottish stores etc
    I believe we should support the UK government if they have the nerve to introduce the so called Amazon tax
    The public need to be told internet banking and online shopping might be cheap and easy but its costing jobs and shop closures they know that .
    But I think we need to make both expensive it would be unpopular but we need to say we have to protect jobs and business including banks .
    Also we are struggling to recruit radiologists

    1. You support allowing Scotland to be ruled by Tories from Westminster.
      You support allowing Amazon to have tax breaks in Scotland with your support of allowing Tories to rule Scotland from Westminster knowing full well it would be no different under a Labour Government in Westminster.
      You support denying the Scottish Parliament the powers and levers of control it needs to fight for and support companies like Homebase in Scotland.
      You support the use of empty hollow rhetoric and pseudo sympathy for the victims of Westminster ideological policy enforcement.
      You do all this because you support the idea that every now and again a Labour Government gets to hold the reigns of power and enforce the exact same ideology and harmful policy choices.
      The very definition of self serving corruption and you wonder why Labour are sitting 3rd in Scottish politics looking at 4th place rather than 2nd as their next stop.
      If you had a shred of self awareness you would realise that its people like you who are the causality of everything that is wrong in UK politics.

  10. The IHRA definition is deeply flawed. It lacks the two caveats recommended by the Home Office Select Committee (look them up) and has been slammed by legal experts as a minefield. Corbyn sees the consequences of adopting the entire thing unmodified so why would he allow the party to be railroaded by a noisy minority, the pro-Israel mafia, who are so desperate to humiliate him that they call in terror chief Netanyahu to add his worthless opinion? This is likely to backfire. Netanyahu is so despised his interference may have given JC a useful boost.

    However, Corbyn does haves a problem with his spin doctor and media crew who should have easily deflected the slurs and turned them against his detractors – that’s assuming they are up to speed and media-savvy, which I doubt.

  11. Any SNP or Tory supporter reading this article and the comments below would go away feeling relaxed.
    There is a depressing eagerness to blame Blairites/Corbynistas while ignoring the deeper failure of the Labour Party in Scotland.
    The near wipe out of 2015 took place while Corbyn was a back bencher on the periphery of the party. (In reality, the party in Scotland was much more Gordon Brown’s than Tony Blair’s.)
    After Corbyn became leader, the party managed to fall behind the Tories in the number of votes won in the 2017 general election.
    At present, Labour in Scotland lacks a purposeful leader, it lacks members to campaign on the streets and it lacks policies which resonate with the public. (I discount denouncing the Tories/SNP/ austerity.)
    It retains the image of a party with a over developed sense of entitlement.

    The last thing it needs is a bout of infighting. This is, of course, what it is indulging in right now.

    1. Having lost their MP in 2015 our local Labour Party seems to have gone into a Big Sulk and still hasn’t snapped out of it. Website is a year out of date, Facebook 6 months out of date. That’s not the way to get new members or keep the ones you’ve got. And it’s no way tlo make a comeback. Why hasn’t HQ given demoralised local parties like this a good pep talk and makeover?

    2. The Labour Party UK and the Corbyn factor that is mainly a London centric elite sorry to say is apart from Greater London in decline in swathes all across middle England, Wales and near total extinction in Scotland. No chance of winning an election without the support of the SNP and this may never happen if the MP Emily Thornberry is involved in any negotiations.

    1. David so sorry l can’t give you the numbers nothing is coming through l am starting to think that MI5 have some sort of magnetic force field that is blocking communications, probably the same wee team who nobbled the 2014 referendum ballot boxes, believe you me the powers that be in the establishment will stop at nothing to thwart an lndependent Scotland. When there is an lndyRef2 the ballot boxes should be transparent see through plastic they should be filmed live 24/7 with online cameras so that we the people can watch them being opened and counted. They should be counted on site and should not be transported to other locations so that they can be nobbled in transit by MI5. It’s my view that Scotland voted for Independence in 2014 and were cheated out of Independence by the state and it’s minions.

  12. Well folks there I was reading the National when I found this a 2 stage spread from Kathleen Nutt
    She has the provisional agenda for the SNP October conference
    Guess what Shock Horror she says Independence and the key question of when a new ref should be held will not be debated
    She says the provisional agenda does not include either indy or Brexit
    She says the Agenda does not include either building a new case for Indy or the timing of a new vote .
    Of the 32 listed potential resolutions she says none offer a new plebiscite
    Brexit is only mentioned twice
    Once in a resolution put down by Fiona Hyslop and Ben MacPherson calling for immigration powers to be devolved to Scotland and one on the problems of recruiting seasonal workers .
    She also reports Chris McElny has said that he finds it absolutely astonishing that with 32 motions making a long list for conference not a single one on the growth commission or currency make the cut .
    How can we not be debating the biggest contribution to the independence case since 2014
    Eddie Morgan SNP Lochaber and Lorne branch said there is an onus on the party to create a vision of Independence and I would hope at the minimum at the conference this year Nicola Sturgeon will give a date of when we are going to have Indy ref2 .
    He also said we need something concrete soon as time is running out
    We will be out of the EU at the end of March and the deadline for negotiations is October .
    SNP members have until August 31 to lodge amendments to the resolutions final conference agenda will be published in September
    I was that overcome with this that I turned to the Times and found Hamish MacDonell wrote this Alec Neill speaking about the growth commission said there should be a debate an open and honest debate that lets people air their views on what is a very important report this will enhance our reputation with the public
    Then there should not be a vote because members might agree with some parts of the report and not others Rory Steel vice convener of SNP Youth said the assemblies to discuss the Growth Commission are a diversionary tactic and a talking shop which will allow the party to draw up currency proposals which would then be rubber stamped following little debate
    Ted might be time to buy extra sugar for your porridge haha

    1. Whats to debate?
      The Scottish Government got its mandate pushed through Parliament to hold a second Indyref.
      An update was promised on the timing for the Indyref in October based on the need to understand what the fuck is going on with Brexit.
      Its August.

      You seem really desperate to have a second Indyref based on your timetable and sound shocked that the Scottish Government doesn’t.
      Would you also be shocked to learn that the UK Government wouldn’t hold a GE based on your timetable either?

      That must come as a real disappointment.

  13. Much more important for me right now
    Homebase will close 42 stores across the UK and Ireland 1500 staff will be affected 10 are in Scotland Homebase are refusing to say how many Scottish workers are affected
    The stores closing are Portlethen and Bridge of Don in Aberdeen Dundee East Kilbride Greenock Hawick Inverness Stirling Pollockshaws and Robroyston are all on the list
    This to me is what should be on all our agendas

    1. Pity the Scottish Parliament is only BARELY Devolved and doesn’t have the levers and power to prevent the Homebase closures eh?

  14. Perhaps the labour party in Scotland should try being an independent scottish political party representing an independent Scotland , instead of representing labour in Westminster.

    Then you may finally be relevant again in your own country.

    Try it .

  15. Thanks for your comment Davy
    You need to get the SNP to campaign for it its not even on their conference agenda .
    If you are an Independence supporter or SNP member get them to debate it try it

    1. It’s not the SNP who needs to campaign on behalf of the labour party in Scotland, it’s the scottish labour members who need to campaign for an independent party and an independent Scotland.

      Otherwise remain a poor apology of a minor branch office.

  16. Anyway how about this for a big brother line up it starts tonight
    Nicola May Boris Jeremy John Bercow Ian Blackford Richard Leonard Ruth Davidson haha

    1. I think Boris would have all the house mates eating out his hand as he is a dab hand at making an excellent curry. He made an excellent curry at his Oxfordshire house when he was making a leadership bid that he eventually pulled out of when he was stabbed in the back by Michael Gove, they say that the real reason Gove stuck the knife in was because Gove was running late and by the time arrived he got a small helping of curry and Boris had added extra hot chili peppers to Goves curry typical Bojo laugh a minute and poor old miserable Govey can’t take a joke some Tories just can’t have fun.

      1. Thanks for your comment Ted
        Naw Hardeep cooks in the BB house maybe Sally will predict the lottery numbers haha

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