Analysis comment

Former ‘official’ Momentum page being used by Momentum ‘Renewal’ supporters to promote pro-Lansman slate. Voting is now open

According to insiders, people involved in the ‘Momentum Renewal’ campaign – which insiders say is a front for the Momentum establishment supportive of founder Jon Lansman and run by north-west ‘fixers’ close to him – are using a former ‘official’ Momentum Facebook page to promote their slate for the elections to Momentum’s National Coordinating Group (NCG), in which voting opened yesterday. The news raises questions around the potential use of Momentum resources to promote one faction in an internal election.

The Facebook page, which has more than 7,000 likes, claimed in 2018 that it was not an official page – however, the same statement admits that the page was previously used by the organisation’s youth wing to promote Lansman’s Momentum slate for the 2016 Young Labour elections under the name ‘Momentum Youth and Students’, with an audience built with Momentum’s brand. It was subsequently renamed ‘Momentum for the Many’.

More directly, the page was being promoted by Momentum founder Lansman himself – as an invitation sent by Lansman in the days when he was still talking to the SKWAWKBOX shows:

The page was also used in 2018 as the main Facebook page to promote another official Momentum slate and is now promoting the ‘Renewal’ slate:

The youth wing was shut down in early 2018 after being embroiled in scandal and personal attacks, and bringing Momentum into disrepute. An inquiry was promised by the NCG but never delivered.

‘Renewal’ has been pitched as a grassroots initiative, but it was created in response to the perceived threat of the independent ‘Forward Momentum’ slate and is made up largely of politicians and staff of MPs; it is organised by ‘fixers’ close to Lansman who have been accused of stacking parliamentary selections in the north-west of England and beyond, although their involvement was not publicised or mentioned in the slate’s ‘Strategy Panel‘.

Voting in the NCG elections is now open. The ‘Renewal’ slate is opposed by the ‘Forward Momentum’ slate, which represents an opportunity for a divergence from ‘business as usual’.

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  2. The official opposition is now Rashford and hes scored a goal against the torys on his first outing into politics.Pack up Lansman we’ve already too many minor fiefdoms inside the knight led Labour party.

  3. Momentum Renewal AND Forward Momentum are just two cheeks of the same opportunist , careerist-packed, middle class, Left Liberal, politically bankrupt buttock. Just have a wee glance at the ‘personal manifestos’ of sundry Forward Momentum candidates on , for instance, the AWL front ‘The Clarion’ online magazine, to see that they, just like the Lansmanite Momentum old guard are still in love with the neoliberal EU, still in favour of unlimited global freedom of movement (ie, unlimited labour supply ), and completely unaware or even interested in, genuine SOCIALIST policies like comprehensive state-led economic planning. Both competing wings of Momentum simply reflect the non-socialist political bankruptcy of the tiny middle class professional bubble that is now the useless UK ‘Left’. The likes of both wings of Momentum have as much chance as Starmer’s ,Tory-lite , Blairite, neoliberals, of reconnecting with the UK working class in our now lost Labour heartlands, ie, NONE at all. Labour is utterly fucked now as a potential political vehicle for socialist politics , and Momentum is a complete waste of time for anyone but pseudo-Leftish careerists looking for a vehicle for their own careers. Time spent trying to ‘democratise ‘ the, almost the from the start, corrupt, Momentum careerist opportunist vehicle, is time wasted – when what is needed is the building of a genuine socialist political party – focussed on the working class, not trendy middle class Left Liberal professionals , outside of the rotten husk of a party that Labour now is. That task will be mind-bogglingly difficult, given the degeneration of today’s ‘Left’, and its generation-long isolation from the working class , but all the harder if good socialists continue to think there is any chance now of ‘re-winning Labour for the Left’.

    And , yes, I do know what a total failure Respect and Left Unity , and many, many, other previous extra Labour Party ‘Left projects’ were. Base any new socialist initiative on the majority of the existing sectarian, entirely middle class, ‘Far Left’, or Left Liberal Labour Party Left Liberal ‘Left’ , and that initiative will never break out of the tiny , overwhelmingly London-centric, Left Bubble. Maybe its an impossible task – but one things surely clear from the total failure of ‘Corbynism’, 2015 to 2019 – hoping Labour can be anything more than a status-quo-supporting reserve party of UK capitalism, is simply delusional madness .

    1. jpenney my wife is one of the candidates on the forward momentum slate.That you describe a lady who has worked for the party for over fifty years at a grassroots level,comes from a solidly working class background and bleeds socialism as “opportunist,careerist,middle class and left liberal” frankly disgusts me. I do not know you but if the effort you have put into trying to achieve a socialist Labour Party and Labour government matches hers then I salute you.

      1. Pleeease ……… spare me your politically ignorant, tiresome, self righteous, indignation, Jim. If your wife is indeed a lifelong socialist it is now surely well past time she ‘woke up and smelled the coffee’ and grasped that the Labour Party is a now totally unreformable Tory-lite party entirely dominated by corruptly bought opportunist careerist MPs and corrupt local councillors, with a membership, that , a very few genuine deluded socialists aside, is overwhelmingly packed out with middle class , higher educated, professional occupation, Left Liberals – even on the ‘Leftier’ wing of ‘Corbynism’.

        The very few genuine socialists in the ‘Reserve Party of UK capitalism’ have been wasting their entire political lives ‘trying to turn Labour Left’ , as Ralph Miliband’s ‘Parliamentary socialism ‘ book pointed out very well back in the late 1960’s ! If your wife has similarly wasted her time working hard as a campaigner and canvasser to put the scum of most of the PLP in career for life jobs throughout the neoliberalism accepting years of Kinnock, Blair, Brown, and Miliband, is this ‘heroic’ on her part – or simply a tragic waste of her socialist commitment and energy ? It’s tragic, Jim !

        The Labour Left, even before it collapsed into pathetic , entirely non-socialist, Left Liberalism over the last 30 years, has always provided no more than a pseudo-Leftish cover (to attract gullible Left activists as members to put in those endless thankless hours of canvassing , etc), for the actual consistent pro imperialist, pro capitalist, policies of Labour both in and out of office. ‘Useful dupes’ I’m afraid. So spare me your tiresome outrage, ‘Jim’ , and actually look at the crap, middle class , moralistic, Left Liberal, policies of the Forward Momentum challenger’ slate. Your wife may well be an exception to the overwhelming majority of the Forward Momentum crew for all I know, but for the rest, my analysis is only too true – just an alternative bunch of middle class opportunists to the Lansman cabal – or the deluded who have failed to grasp that the timid constant compromising of ‘Corbynism’ utterly failed, and the now firmly neoliberal Labour Party will never form a majority government again. The best the Starmerites can hope for is to mimic the German SPD, and serve as junior partners in a Tory/Labour coalition, as the nominally ‘social democratic’ SPD have done with the German Christian Democrat Tories for over a decade now.

    2. Voting for Forward Momentum is more than voting for who gets to seat at the NCG, we need the slate of Forward Momentum to win most of the positions or otherwise, it would be almost impossible to agree on a single slate representing the left for the NEC.
      A victory for Renewal Momentum candidates, would be presented as Momentum (Lasman) having a mandate to impose his will on the CLGA; meaning he will block any candidates he doesn’t approve of and making impossible to negotiate a single left slate, for the NEC. We know were that leads as back in February by-election.
      The best choice, independently of how well known and well liked are some of the Renewal Momentum candidates is to vote for the slate of Forward Momentum, we need to think strategically.

      1. Sorry to disagree but Momentum have often proved to be unreliable. It’s of just Landon but the whole organisation is dubious. It has a dark and deeply treacherous spine. The party itself is finished. Doesn’t the defeat of Skinner scream enough. Time for socialists to have a rethink. We are all staring dictatorship in the face and what is Laours’ answer. Keith Starker and pretending that we live in apartheid country. Well done loyal oppositionists . These are bad times indeed and there is no opposition to speak of,apart from Come Dancing around some statues. Stay safe, obey. What a shower. Regards

  4. jpenney much of what you say is so similar to what we were saying on joining the party in 1970 and to some extent I agree with much of it. I do however have some issues with your statement. I don’t understand why you need to be so insulting and I don’t accept that nothing has been achieved by door knocking etc. We were remarkably close to victory in 2017 a testament to the hard work of grass roots members. I agree it is “tragic ” that after so many years so little has changed but at least we can say we tried I fear that standing in splendid isolation,however sound your principles,will achieve nothing.

    1. Jim, Jenny is always throwing his toys out of a pram if anyone dares to differ or diverge from his world view. Jenny has always to be correct. Maybe he thinks rudeness gives him Street cred. But he reminds me more of the guy in the sitcom of one foot in the grave who kept on shouting ‘I do’ t believe it’.
      I have taken part in hustings last night and was well impressed by the FM candidates..

  5. I’m worried that Skwawk is endorsing the AWL ticket. The AWL is about as removed from socialism as the ex-RCG/RCP types who now run Bojo’s parody of Wayne’s World. Frankly, Britain is still awash with ultra-Trots who should be ignored, excluded or shot – but never taken seriously and never allowed have any influence over the Labour Party. If the choice is between Starmer, the AWL and slitting my wrists, bring on the razors.

  6. Skwawkbox has gone full Paul Mason mode. The idea that MR slate is a pro Lansman front is nonsense and a bit dog whistley.

    That you’re backing FM with a full complement of AWL nutjobs says a lot.

  7. Skwawkbox supports FM, so this article is a bit disingenuous. If you’re going to be campaigning, at least let readers know that.

    Also, good to know you back the AWL slate and the AEIP remainiacs.

    1. I have not endorsed any slate. And it seems your AWL/AEIP comment is factually inaccurate

  8. Really odd, as someone who has been reading and commenting on Skwawkbox for many years but two of my comments do not appear below. Have you gone full Graun mode in screening comments?

  9. Not one of the Forward Momentum slate is a member of this tiny AWL group. People should stop the negative campaigning and discuss the issues in the campaign, democratising Momentum with a resounding conference, strong, local groups controlling their own data, regular, transparent NCG meetings with report backs to branches and a renewed focus on the workplace, the unions and the community to rebuild the Left in the Labour Party. As a matter of urgency, we need this refounded organisation to join with other Left groupings in a united slate to win seats on the NEC and prevent a further shift to the right.

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