‘Anti-austerity is now the centre-ground of Scottish politics’ – Dugdale

In a frank interview with Ayesha Hazarika in Progress Magazine, Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale has said that the desire for change which crystallised during the independence referendum is now focusing on the question of anti-austerity policy across Scottish political parties.

Dugdale said:

“Anti-austerity politics is now the centre-ground of Scottish politics because the lesson from the referendum is that there is an overwhelming desire for change.”

“There’s a choice here. We either choose to accept austerity and the Scottish parliament becomes a conveyor belt for Tory cuts or we choose to do things differently. I choose to do things differently.”

The latest edition of Progress – the magazine of Labour modernisers – out this week marks International Women’s Day (Tuesday 8 March) and has been guest edited by Ayesha Hazarika, a comedian, broadcaster and former adviser to Ed Miliband and Harriet Harman.

She is very clear-eyed about how difficult the road ahead is for Scottish Labour. The Scottish National party is polling 53 per cent right now and it may well win every constituency seat. But she has priced that into her long-term plan for the party. ‘The metric of success for me is not about the number of seats, but by May I have to prove a case that people have a much clearer sense of what the Labour party is about in Scotland now.’

Dugdale’s strategy is to renew the party in Scotland through three pillars of work: first, renew the values so there is a clear sense of what the party stands for – and we have seen that in Scottish Labour’s new income tax policy. Second, renew the future focus of the party, which involves fresh faces and asking bigger questions about what Scotland may look like in 20-30 years’ time rather than just looking at a short electoral cycle. And, third, renew the Labour family and the Scottish party’s relationship with the rest of the United Kingdom.

You can read the full interview at http://www.progressonline.org.uk/magazines/march-2016/

 

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7 thoughts on “‘Anti-austerity is now the centre-ground of Scottish politics’ – Dugdale

  1. “There’s a choice here. We either choose to accept austerity and the Scottish parliament becomes a conveyor belt for Tory cuts or we choose to do things differently. I choose to do things differently.”

    Did she vote Yes in the referendum?

  2. First, let’s increase the tax on the ordinary working man & woman .

    Second, ask our MSPs to switch jacket’s so no-one can see their exactly the same candidates as before.

    Third, do what our bosses down in London say and follow their orders.

    This anti-austerity is easy, we just vote in favour of it in Westminster, then blame the SNP for it in Scotland, cunning eh.

  3. Not sure the Progress article’s a good idea, it can only serve to remind people that Kezia’s a Blairite, especially when she’s trying to rebrand herself & Scottish Labour as left of centre socialists.

  4. “Dugdale’s strategy is to renew the party in Scotland through three pillars of work: first, renew the values….. Second, renew the future focus of the party, ……. And, third, renew the Labour family……………..”
    Good luck with that Ms Dugdale, what ever that is?

  5. The ” three pillars”–
    1.- Is to impose EXTRA taxation on people, who have had their standard of living frozen for a decade, at Scotland and local government level.
    Apart from the supposed anti-austerity meme, there is no attempt to justify this on the grounds of economic fairness. It is simply a tax grab to prop up indolent local government, who have made little attempt at unifying common services or cutting replication etc.—Did I read that Glasgow has more £100,000 officials per capita, than ANYWHERE else in the UK?

    2.-“Fresh faces”? Where are they—its the same old gang, with the same old “we wiz robbed” whine.
    Scotland in 20/30 years time? What if we opt for self government -a la Keir Hardie?

    3.-” Renew the Labour family—relationship…rest of UK( is this the same relationship, where, for decades, London cracked the whip and Scotland jumped) “—-I repeat—what if we opt for Home Rule-a la Keir Hardie ?

    1. For those unaware of what Keir Hardie believed—–he wanted Scotland to have Dominion Status—the same as Canada—–perhaps Ian Murray can explain Canada’s constitutional status, when he comes back from his wee tax-payer funded jaunt to that excellent self governing country. He seems to get plenty of BBC airtime.

  6. Answer? A phoenix Scottish Independent Labour Party. The “old guard” (including those Scottish Labour Lords) are proven useless and a betrayal to Keir Hardie values.
    Scotland will be Independent in 30 years. Perhaps with help from a Scottish Independent Labour Party.

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