Excl: proof #NPF18 ‘snap’ election pre-planned by right

murray kerr

The Labour right’s ‘outrage‘ at the cancellation of yesterday’s election of a new National Policy Forum (NPF) chair rests on the claim that the decision to hold an election in the first place was a natural consequence of current Chair Ann Cryer’s decision to resign.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Below is the sequence of events leading up to Saturday – and an explosive revelation about Ms Cryer’s resignation.

On Monday the NPF officers – 3 vice-chairs plus the Chair of the ‘Joint Policy Committee’ – were told Cryer was resigning as Chair and it was proposed that an election should take place at the NPF meeting. This was opposed by one of the officers on the grounds that it was too short notice, but a vote was held and carried by two to one, with one abstention.

Late on Tuesday afternoon, NPF members were sent an email titled ‘NPF Update‘ – not ‘NPF election‘ – resulting in just three and a half days’ notice. National Executive Committee (NEC) rules and NPF procedures say all documents must be circulated at least seven days before the meeting.

The election was not an emergency matter – there was no pressing reason at why the election needed to be held on Saturday – so it could be held within any reasonable timeframe.

The text message

However, the key to the matter was the resignation of Ann Cryer. On Friday, Ms Cryer sent a text to an NPF member who had asked her to consider staying on to the end of her term of office later this year.

Ms Cryer responded that she had originally planned to do anyway, so that the new Chair could be approved by September’s annual Conference – but that she had been asked to bring forward her resignation so that an election could take place at yesterday’s NPF meeting.

Ms Cryer was in fact persuaded – apparently reluctantly – to stand down early as part of a planned manoeuvre intended to get Ann Black on the NEC Officer group – if the NPF chair is also on the NEC, s/he automatically gets a seat among the Officers.

As the week went by, it became clear that if the election went ahead it would be extremely close. On Friday, twenty-five additional delegates registered at the last minute to boost the numbers who would be there to vote for Ann Black.

The manoeuvre was, from the beginning, an attempt to set up an election the foregone conclusion of the election of Ann Black as NPF Chair – not, as it was presented, as a natural reaction to an announced resignation.

On again, off again

Labour sources say that Ms Murray was advised of the NEC officer ruling before the meeting and it was agreed that NEC Chair Andy Kerr would make a short statement following which normal NPF business would continue, rather than a debate about the decision.

However, points of order were taken and Ms Murray announced she would take the vote. A challenge to that decision was made and a vote was called to see if there was a two-thirds majority to approve this challenge.

While all this was taking place, urgent discussions were going on as the NPF cannot constitutionally overturn the NEC as the sovereign body of the party. There was chaos as the votes were counted and a recount was required.

Before the results of the vote were known, Labour staff asked Ms Murray to adjourn the conference and meet with NEC officers so the constitutional position could be explained and the reasons why the vote could not take place.

According to sources at the event, Ms Murray accepted the decision – as already confirmed by eyewitness accounts published on this blog – and it was agreed she would make the announcement jointly with Andy Kerr. They were therefore both at the podium together in the photograph shown above, which has been presented by the Labour right as depicting Kerr ‘shoving’ her out of the way.

In the context of the facts, any abusive behaviour that took place was not on the platform or carried out by NEC members – as video evidence has demonstrated. The Labour right has shamed itself and brought disrepute on the party.

Most significantly, Ms Cryer’s admission by text message that she had been specifically asked to bring forward her resignation in order to make yesterday’s events possible, exposes a cynical right-wing attempt to gerrymander an election to achieve a foregone conclusion for factional political purposes – and exposes right-wing ‘outrage’ for what it really is.

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54 responses to “Excl: proof #NPF18 ‘snap’ election pre-planned by right

  1. Has there been any response from the NEC? Or Iain McNichol for that matter?

  2. Those involved in this disgraceful attempt to undermine the authority of the NEC clearly have no respect for the Labour Party, its rules or its ruling body.

    These destructive, ill-disciplined, sectarian individuals are not fit to be Labour Party members or representatives of the party.

    Their behaviour is part of a coordinated attempt to damage the reputation of the party and to destabilise the party.

    These people should be expelled.

  3. Such a sweet smell of desperation seeping out of these underhand tactics

  4. Pingback: Excl: proof #NPF18 ‘snap’ election pre-planned by right | The SKWAWKBOX – leftwingnobody·

  5. If it’s OK to suspend or throw Labour party members out for less why are those responsible for this abuse of process & democracy not facing permanent removal from the party?

    It’s time those carrying out these plots were given the boot, some examples need to be made, especially when they then brief the media with lies.

  6. It is worth noting that Lucy Powell, one of those taking an active part in the undermining of the authority of the NEC and the complete disregard of Labour Party rules, is a Cooperative Party MP not a Labour Party MP.

    It is abundantly clear that the Cooperative Party and its MPs and councillors are engaged in a campaign to destabilise and undermine the Labour Party and its organisational structure.

    An investigation into the activities of the Cooperative Party’s representatives is now urgently required.

    I propose there be a moratorium on the electoral agreement between the two parties until this investigation has been completed and the recommendations of the investigation are considered by the NEC.

  7. Lucy Powell Cooperative Party MP
    Anna Turley Cooperative Party MP
    Luciana Berger Cooperative Party MP

    These individuals have been involved in a coordinated attempt to undermine the authority of the Labour Party’s NEC and cause reputational damage to the party by briefing falsehoods about the Labour party regarding the NPF meeting.

    Their falsehoods are a matter of public record.

    Formal complaints have now been made against these three individuals.

    Labour Party members are encouraged to also submit formal complaints against these Cooperative Party MPs.

  8. Surely what we need to know is who asked Ann Cryer to stand down early

  9. THANKYOU Steve, at last it’s all beginning to make some sense.

    And presumably Ann Black was a party to all these machinations – ie this devious and underhand ploy.

  10. How interesting! I went on to the labourlist website for the first time early-ish this morning, and ended up posting several comments about this episode, and I just went back there now to post a link to this article, and apart from one very short one, they had all been deleted. Hmm. Says it all really. I assume it was labourlist that did it, and not disqus (who I suspect have links to the NSA and GCHQ and other assorted spooks).

    • Hell of a lot of trolls on labourlist. Sounds like they’re trawling, wasting our time, and spreading discontent…..

  11. So in Nov 2016, Ann Cryer was elected chair and the three vice chairs were Shabana Mahmood, Mick Whelan and Katrina Murray.

    ‘A vote was held and carried by two to one, with one abstention.’ So since Mick Whelan was almost certainly the vote against, it seems obvious as to who likely voted for the snap election.

  12. Jamie Bramwell

    Yesterday I attended the Labour National Policy Forum as a delegate and whatever you may have read on twitter or in the media is completely wrong and untrue.

    I was sat three rows behind Lucy Powell who was stood up making a point of order which is her right to do on the debate about electing a chair, Andy Kerr was helpfully trying to clarify what the NEC officers had decided in an earlier meeting in which he explained at the beginning of the meeting, it was Lucy Powell who shouted at Andy “Sit down” about 6-7 times, I was there and Andy did not shove, push, barge anyone out of the way whatsoever, and certainly did not use any sort of foul language.

    Andy was just clarifying the position that the NEC officers had made in a meeting earlier, I can honestly say that Andy Kerr is a genuine and respectful man, a great friend and comrade who would never dream of doing what some are claiming, as I said I was there and none of what is claimed by some happened, these allegations against a man of integrity are shameful.

    I am deeply disappointed with those who have made those accusations and think they should take time to look at their actions and allegations and offer Andy the apology he deserves.

  13. It does seem interesting that Ann Black a seeming stickler for the rules was not so rule conscious over this huh?

    • numina How many members of the National Policy Forum are there altogether. And how many would you estimate were present on Saturday (in the huffpost article they say that a source told them that the result of the ballot (that Katrina Murray conducted) was “roughly 70 to 45” – ie somewhere in the region of 115 members were present at the meeting, assuming that they all took part in the ballot).

      And can you confirm that JC was in fact there.

      Thanks

      NB It just occured to me to do a search re the numer of memebers, and I found the following page (on the NPF website), and if I counted them up correctly, there are 191 members:

      https://www.policyforum.labour.org.uk/about/npf

      Assuming that’s (more-or-less) correct, then around seventy plus members were not present at Saturday’s meeting.

      So just of interest numina, are members asked to confirm if they will be attending?

  14. The wreckers in the Party are rapidly having the power they once wielded prized from their grasp by democratic methods and because democracy is anathema to them they are apoplectic with rage.

    From where do they get this messianic belief that they are the ones who have to be in control? they get it from Iain McNicol who gets it from ……….!!!

    • To answer your last question…… they are all sociopaths and psychopaths and, as such, regard themseves as highly superior to the rest of us. And THAT is precisely why they have no qualms whatsoever about lying and fabricating and distorting and smearing etc, and decieving and manipulating millions of people.

  15. Pingback: EXCL: PROOF #NPF18 ‘SNAP’ ELECTION PRE-PLANNED BY RIGHT | Declaration Of Opinion·

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  17. The following is from a previous skwawkbox article on the matter:

    Scott-Samuel [who was at the meeting] later gave the SKWAWKBOX a fuller account of the events:

    Prior to today Ann Cryer had apparently both offered and rescinded her resignation.
    First thing this morning Katrina Murray proposed an election. Andy Kerr then said that the NEC would not permit this because not enough notice had been given to NPF members.
    Various audience members then started shouting about how he was bullying Katrina etc – which he clearly wasn’t. He was simply asserting his authority.
    A Ballot was taken on whether to accept Andy’s challenge to Katrina’s authority. But the result was never given because while the votes were being counted Katrina came back and accepted that Andy had the right to prevent a vote.

    (Ends)

    So according to him, Katrina Murray proposed an election that morning – ie the morning of the meeting – which if true (and why wouldn’t it be) explains why the NEC stepped in when it did and made the ruling that it did. The key thing that I didn’t understand until a few minutes ago (when I just happened to go back to a previous skwawkbox article where, in the Comments section – it had been pointed out that the meeting was a scheduled meeting – ie it HADN’T been arranged specifically to elect a new chair).

    Anyway, it’s interesting that he only mentions (the presence of) Andy Kerr, which is kind of odd if there were in fact five other NEC officers at the meeting (as the huffpost reported). And why would he – Andy Kerr – have to assert HIS authority if everyone present were aware that there were six NEC officers there altogether and he, Andy Kerr, was speaking on their behalf.

    And it does seem totally weird to me that they – ie Katrina Murray and whoever – should think to hold a ballot which they must have known wasn’t going to alter the decision that had already been made by Andy Kerr (and the other five NEC officers if indeed it happened like that), so why would it even occur to you to hold a (meaningless and pointless) ballot, unless perhaps you knew in advance of course that a totally fabricated and distorted version of events was going to hit the media shortly thereafter – along with prepared (short) statements and tweets for the media – and a poll of those present showing the makority in favour of proceeding with voting for a new chair. And apart from anything else, definitely implies that Murray KNEW what the composition of those present at the meeting was AND, as such, KNEW what the result of the poll would be.

    And if there were indeed five other NEC officers present, why would Scott-Samuel describe it thus:

    ‘A Ballot was taken on whether to accept Andy’s challenge to Katrina’s authority.’

    Challenge?

    There are still a number of things that just don’t add up. And I definitely smell a rat!

    • Needless to say, Scott-Samuel’s account (above) differs in some key respects from the sequence of events related in the above article:

      ‘On Monday the NPF officers – 3 vice-chairs plus the Chair of the ‘Joint Policy Committee’ – were told Cryer was resigning as Chair and it was proposed that an election should take place at the NPF meeting. This was opposed by one of the officers on the grounds that it was too short notice, but a vote was held and carried by two to one, with one abstention.

      Late on Tuesday afternoon, NPF members were sent an email titled ‘NPF Update‘ – not ‘NPF election‘ – resulting in just three and a half days’ notice. National Executive Committee (NEC) rules and NPF procedures say all documents must be circulated at least seven days before the meeting.’

      Steve (skwawkbox) doesn’t say who it was exactly that gave him the information related in the above article, but IF an email WAS sent out to all representatives on the Monday letting them know that there would be a ballot at Saturday’s meeting to elect a new chair, then surely Scott-Samual would have received one, and known that THAT was happening as of reading said email. So why did he say in another related article (on skwawkbox) a day or so prior to this one, that the decision to hold a ballot to elect a new chair was taken by Murray (and whoever) on the Saturday morning.

      All these disparities just don’t make sense. And whatever the case, IF the emails WERE sent out on the Monday afternoon, at what point did NEC officers learn that the NPF were planning to hold a ballot to elect a new chair at Saturday’s meeting. Could it really be the case that they didn’t learn about it until the morning of the day of the meeting, the point being of course that IF it was in the days PRIOR to the meeting, then surely they would have insisted that the NPF notify all their representatives that a ballot will now NOT take place to elect a new chair on Saturday because the rules state that seven days notice has to be given.

      I think ALL Labour Party members are owed a full and detailed explanation of the whole episode (from the NPF and the NEC), and especially in view of the totally false, fabricated, distorted and contrived version of events as ‘reported’ by just about all the media (and fed to them in the first place), and the fact that the majority of LP members are supporters of Jeremy Corbyn.

  18. Can skwawkbox confirm – from the rulebook itself – that seven days notice is required. I don’t doubt it, but if it IS the case, then I am highly dubious that Katrina Murray (and whoever else) wouldn’t have known that to be the case. In other words, she/they KNEW that their decision to hold a vote to elect a new chair would be overturned by the NEC officers present.

    • The rule book is full of ambiguities by mistake (or perhaps deliberately). It is those loopholes which have so often been exploited eg the attempt to stop Corbyn being automatically on the ballot vs Owen Smith. Mike Creighton, a former LP head of compliance, writes in his blog that 7 days notice is required for other posts but not specifically the chair…. hence, there was a space to load the meeting with 25 last minute RW delegates and propel a chosen candidate (Ann Black) straight onto the NEC’s panel of officers… the body that determines who sits on … for example, deciding short-lists in by-elections and which members of NCC are to hear cases deciding if suspended members (like Ken Livingston, Kelvin Hopkins) should be expelled.

      The decision to hold the election on the Saturday was taken by the vice-chairs. Mick Whelan (Aslef) voted against, therefore the decision was taken by Katrina Murray and Shabana Mahmood. It is therefore, not surprising that KM asked for a vote as to whether to hold the election regardless of the NEC decision to defer or that Lucy Powell was pushing from the floor. In lieu of getting their candidate through, the next best was to make a mess for the media to pick up.

      It is a manufactured storm because an election will now be held, with proper notice to all 200+ NPF delegates. Instead of a scheduled meeting, not comprising the full complement of delegates, being jumped into an unnecessarily early decision.

      • Thanks for your thoughts on the matter, but IF seven days notice ISN’T stipulated in the rulebook, then why did Andy Kerr (and the other five NEC officers who were there supposedly) say that it WAS. It just doesn’t make sense. (But you got it spot on in your comment on another related skwawkbox article posted yesterday, which I just happened to mention in a comment I posted just prior to this one……see below).

    • I had a look thru the 2018 Rule Book and I can’t actually find a direct rule stating how the NPF Chair is elected. The obvious place 4.III.D “Election of National Policy Forum (NPF)” does not mention Chair, and the default “Model Standing Orders for Party Units” does not define how a Chair is elected. So to me it looks like general principles (4.I.1) applies which is effectively “fair, open and transparent manner [and] any appropriate NEC guidelines”. I don’t know where NEC guidelines would be filed in a place an ordinary member can see them, but this does sugggest NEC controls the election mechanism. And to me “fair, open and transparent” implies notice is given so candidates can prepare themselves for the election meeting.

      Given that rule 1.V.3 & 1.V.4 puts “the Chair and three vice Chairs of the NPF” onto the committee that decides the manifesto contents, this seems rather inadequate. Maybe I’ve just missed something despite examining every line that mentions “NPF”.

      Another interesting point is that the model standing orders given in chapter 15 of the rule book says business to be transacted should be on the agenda, sent out at least 7 days before the meeting. So having a Chair resign fewer than 7 days before a meeting, ie the Monday in this case, seems to be the cunning way to try to slip the Chair’s election thru as AOB!

      • Exactly. The model rule applies in the absence of any other standing order – and there’s no other standing order

      • rwendland Thanks for the info, and thankyou very much for taking the time to scour the rulebook. So it would appear that there is no specific rule regards giving (at least) seven days notice of an impending election for a new Chair, BUT there IS a rule specifying that members must be notified at least seven days in advance of any business on the agenda, which of course would include any ballot scheduled to take place. In other words, Murray and Co WERE in violation of the rules (and the NEC representatives had every right to rule as they did). And she/they obviously knew that they were, because they must have abided by said rule in the past.

        The key question is: When would NEC officers have learnt that Murray and Co had broken this rule – ie when DID they learn. The fact that six of them (according to reports) attended the meeting implies of course that they each received the email that was sent out on the Monday afternoon by Murray and Co, which was sent out specifically to notify everyone that a ballot would be taking place on Saturday (at the scheduled meeting) to elect a new Chair. And assuming that THAT’S the case, why didn’t they contact Murray and Co then, and tell them that they were in breach of the rules and that they would have to postpone the ballot, AND that they should notify all members that THAT is the case immediately.

        But it didn’t happen like that! And there must be an explanation for why it didn’t, and why it didn’t happen until the day of the meeting.

        Until a full and detailed explanation is forthcoming (from the NPF and NEC) as to the sequence of events, I will continue to suspect that it was all contrived and pre-planned to create precisely the situation that it did, along with the concocted stuff about Andy Kerr shoving Murray out the way and swearing at her.

  19. I don’t understand the statement in the article that “on Friday, twenty-five additional delegates registered at the last minute to boost the numbers who would be there to vote for Ann Black.” Surely the NPF membership is set, it is not like a GC where there might be new affiliations (and therefore new delegates). Can anyone explain?

    • NPF members are set. Which of those has registered to attend the meeting varies meeting by meeting

  20. Interesting. In another related skwawkbox article posted yesterday, one of the commenters is saying that he/she has thoroughly searched the rule-book and can find no mention of ‘seven days’ notice being required. It’s the second comment down (at the time of writing). BUT even if that IS the case, the next comment (at the time of writing) says it all anyway:

    https://skwawkbox.org/2018/02/18/excl-eyewitnesses-say-no-bullying-no-swearing-no-barging-at-labour-npf18/#comments

    Would be very helpful if Steve (skwawkbox) could contact the NEC and ask them precisely where it’s stated in the rulebook (or wherever). There are so many contradictions in respect of this matter, and we really need to clarify everything and get to the bottom of it (which I strongly suspect emanates from way, way down in the sewers ,and perhaps even further down!).

    PS So in the meantime, ignore my comment above this one!

  21. The rule book needs to be gone through and rewritten to exclude this type of loophole. However, as you pointed out, the democratic process demands that proper notification is required, regardless of whether there is a specific rule or not. And particularly so, when that election guarantees a position as a NEC officer, with all the power that that position entails.

    • The very idea of ‘Rules’ is a left wing thing, especially rule that are available for all to see. Imagine an organisation like CLPD from the right – no, it doesn’t make sense. Actual example: at a meeting to challenge the secret formation of a CLP EC, the Chair of the Regional Board repeatedly stated ‘the EC is sovereign’. Compare that with the recent CLPD Democracy Review submissions: ‘the EC is the servant of the GM’. In short, the left’s fascination with rules makes little sense to the right – worth bearing in mind when trying to move forward.

    • Couldn’t agree more. Let’s sort this out once and for all to stop ANY ambiguity from being exploited by whom ever ( right or left wings of the party )

  22. How funny! I just switched the TV on about half-an-hour ago and browsed through the listings, and lo-and-behold on the Parliament Channel they have their Fake News Committee in session. It’s practically all about one of the biggest pieces of fake news there has ever been – ie Russian interfence etc. Yes, the whole thing is a sick joke, because as WE all know – and every Tory MP knows – the biggest purveyors of fake and fabricated news by light years is the right-wing press – ie the Sun and the Mail and the Express etc. THEY have been subverting democracy for decades disseminating their lies and fabrications and distortions etc, etc.

  23. I just happened to go back to the Labourlist comments section about ten minutes ago, and the most recent post at that point was someone who had posted a link to this article. And within five minutes or so it was gone. The last thing they want is for people to learn the truth (as opposed to THEIR totally false and fabricated version of events).

    Whilst I was there I thought I’d post another comment about the number of delegates there are on the NPF that are entitled to vote, and how many were present at the meeting last Saturday. Will be interesting to see how long it stays up for!

  24. Immediately I posted my above comment I went back to the labourlist comment section and it was gone! Must be a full-time job for someone – ie monitoring all the comments and deleting those that reveal the truth and expose their lies.

  25. The Right actually enjoy fighting the Left although JC has destroyed their weak argument that radicalism doesn’t work – we stand for something again! What comes over to me is (a) how poorly read the Right are and (b) how afraid the Right are of challenging the rich and powerful and capitalism ; history will wonder if they ever existed.
    But perhaps some of you too need to be careful oo – don’t treat the Coop as an homogenous group – some of us are Left and 100% behind
    JC! Read, read, read & evidence, evidence, evidence.
    Solidarity to critically thinking left wing democratic socialists.

  26. I just had a look at the same LL comments. Shocking.
    Political sentiment in the country is in constant flux, moving either to the right or left. It’s been moving leftward for a while now BECAUSE OF CORBYN.
    The Blairites are trying to push Labour to the fabled “centre” while we push back but if they win they push society itself to the right of where it is now.
    How do they justify that to themselves?
    Blair used ‘electability’ as the carrot to subvert our principles when a Labour victory did, in fairness, look very distant and I can only imagine that must still be their justification because – what else could it possibly be?
    It makes no sense to sacrifice principle for electability when Labour is polling well and rising – not to mention the skin-crawlingly dirty feeling the Blairites seem immune to.
    Events (AI/robotics jobs holocaust) will likely turn society away from anything smacking of Toryism in about a decade – there’ll be little forgiveness when everyone sees the part Blairites played in the disaster by extending Tory rule in the name of “centrism.”

    • David I need a bit more time to ‘construct’ my response to the points you made, but there are TWO points I can respond to immediately.

      After seventeen years of the Tories and Thatcherism, the majority of the electorate were desperate for a change. In other words, the Tories were finished (and the Establishment were well aware of that of course), and Major – the Tories – had only JUST got past the post first in 1992, and ONLY then with a vast amount of ‘assistance’ from the right-wing press (‘Kinnock’s Kremlin Connection’ being a prime example of their dirty tricks). So Blair – THEIR plant in the Labour Party – was lined up to continue their program. The very fact that the Tory press gave him a smooth ride in the years after he became leader of the LP is proof enough of that. And for many years, HE – and his New Labour team – were able to dupe and fool millions of people.

      I say this in response to your saying that: “….Labour victory did, in fairness, look very distant….”. It didn’t, because the PTB had THEIR man in place, and lined up to take over and continue their program.

      My main point is that you are leaving a key factor out of the equation – ie the power and the influence of the Establishment’s propaganda machine, as we are NOW of course witnessing, and have been more-or-less from the moment JC became leader of the LP. Your point about ‘electability’ stems directly from the power of the right-wing press. But Blair and his New Labour buddies didn’t move to the right so as to make Labour electable, they were on and of the right anyway.

      And the fundamental thing at work in the political divide (and especially at the present time) is, ‘For The Many Not The Few’ on the one hand, and ‘For The Few Not The Many’ on the other. THAT is precisely WHY, for example, the PTB abolished the GLC and the six Metropolitan County Councils back in the 1980s, because they were all controlled by the former. Had they been under Tory control or ‘moderate’ Labour control, they would NOT have been abolished of course.

      In the final analys, it is the psychopaths and sociopaths verses the empaths.

      • I meant a Real Labour victory. Blair was at the time the acceptable face of Labour to the middle class. Yes, everyone was sick of the Tories but they weren’t ready for a left wing Gov with strikes & 3 day weeks still fresh in the memory. Not justifying or praising Blair in any way.

        MSM Tory bias is a given to everyone here – didn’t leave it out of my thinking, just no need to labour that point in this discussion in this company.

        Point I intended to make was that sentiment swings generation to generation – ie even fascism has new followers.
        AI/robotics will either be ours or the 1%’s. If theirs our subjugation will be such that violent insurrection may quickly follow.
        Either way we’ll prevail but we need to take steps to educate each successive generation (given the natural yearning for change of youth) of the dangers of neoliberalism – or the right could rise again.
        Given that I intend to live to 150 I’m just thinking ahead 🙂

  27. Oh and before you come back, I refer comrades to the recent two excellent speeches by Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonell on Labour utilising some cooperative ideas in its democratic public ownership plans; perhaps some need to fully get with the programme Ha! Ha!
    But if you think about it we need to nail down democratically publicly owned industries from future Tory carpetbaggers (the Tories corporate mates) IT IS CALLED FORWARD THINKING and apart from the NHS perhaps it was easy for Thatcher to privatise industries as people didn’t think or more importantly FEEL hat these industries were THEIRS. Which is why democratic public ownership needs to give staff and communities a say. My idea on the public utilities would be to run them like Coops with the public being given an annual Divi which could be taken as cash or offset against bills (to address fuel poverty) and people could feel they were theirs But this is only an idea but they would then be nailed down! But we could have diverse models with for example rail and water just having to break even. Left wing democratic socialist diversity will be the spice of life Ha! Ha!

    • I agree entirely, but regards the railways, as far as I am aware, they were always subsidised to some extent or other when in public ownership, and still are since they were privatised.

  28. Correction: I was just browsing through the above comments again and see that the email sent out to representatives was sent out on the Tuesday afternoon, and NOT the Monday afternoon, as I have stated in a number of my posts (not that THAT effects in the slightest the points I was making).

  29. Even in a Capitalist system subsidised public services would have made sense – to the extent of free housing, transport, energy and connectivity.
    Much innovation is lost to the daily grind of providing for these universal needs which in a modern society should be considered basic human rights.

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