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Literally Orwellian: Bath Labour forced to abandon meeting to protect members after SW region bars all motions except one to mark Orwell anniversary

Latest chapter in Labour’s war on members in its south-west region – and much more to come

Bath Labour constituency party (CLP) has been forced to cancel a planned meeting to elect officers and discuss motions after ‘deliberate confusion’ in which all the planned motions it submitted were ruled out by the party’s regional office – except one to mark the anniversary of the death of George Orwell – and the regional office criticised supposed gender imbalance in the CLP’s executive but banned members from electing officers for another three months.

The CLP’s elected officers sent out an email on Tuesday evening to members to warn them of the change and explain the troubling events behind it:

Postponement of Motions Meeting Wednesday, 9th December

We regretfully inform you that our motions meeting scheduled for Wednesday, 9th December, cannot safely proceed for the reasons explained below and it is therefore postponed until further notice.

You will have received an email from regional office informing you that their employees will be running our Annual General Meeting (AGM) in February 2021. This situation is not unique to Bath CLP and regional office have not made their reasons for this clear.

Region informed the Executive Committee (EC) that the motions meeting could proceed but that we cannot go ahead with the meeting to elect members to fill vacant officer roles and address gender imbalance on the EC. We are not able to tell you why in Bath some meetings can be managed by the EC and others not because we have been given no reasons.

We have been told that some kind of investigation is underway, but we do not know who is conducting it or whether we will be involved in the investigation. We have been told it is not a disciplinary process but do not know what it is about. We can assure you we have tried hard on numerous occasions to find out more detail but no one will tell us and therefore we cannot tell you. We believe that we have conducted ourselves with utmost integrity at all times whilst also working hard for our members and communities, despite having lost the services of several officers during this pandemic.

You might already be aware of Labour Party members and officers having been suspended at their ‘motions meetings’ in other parts of the country even when banned motions are not being discussed. The guidance appears to state that any subject of conversation that could lead to a “flashpoint for the expression of views” could lead to suspensions. It is unclear to us what this means or how this affects the management of motions meetings. While the situation is so confusing we believe that there is no clear route for us, as your elected EC, to protect our members and ensure you can avoid suspension. We feel we cannot, in good conscience, put any of our members in that position and therefore it is with great sadness that we have come to the view that our motions meeting scheduled for Wednesday, 9th December, cannot safely proceed.

As your elected Executive Committee (EC), we put looking after your democratic rights at the heart of everything we do. So as soon as there is more clarity re this situation we hope to resume democratic meetings safely once again.

We are aware that many people are distressed by the situation. We, on the EC, feel the pain you are feeling, we empathise with the confusion and the distress. If anyone wants to reach out and speak to us so that we can offer support at this difficult time please do not hesitate. We are only an email away. There are many people feeling isolated due to Covid and other issues and we want to reassure you all that we want to stand by you, be here to listen and help in anyway that we can.

There are many other ways that we can exercise our democratic rights. We can write letters, ensure we vote on matters that we care about and make sure our elected representatives hear us. We can also attend the online events together that we are arranging. We have had fascinating and dynamic speakers, and lively and thoughtful discussions have arisen. Most importantly of all we can support one another. We intend to redouble our efforts to support our vulnerable members, help people in our communities and to keep you informed of all the exciting things we have planned as a CLP. We want to bring positivity and Christmas cheer to every one of you at this time of year.

Yours in deep respect and comradeship,

Bath CLP Executive Committee

Labour members in Bath have told the SKWAWKBOX that they believed the confusion was deliberately created as a trap to allow action to be taken against left members of the CLP, which is one of the cash-richest in the country.

The cancellation is the latest in a string of attacks on Labour members in the region, who were disenfranchised in the selection of a ‘metro’ mayoral candidate and whose officers were suspended for allowing them to exercise their democratic rights.

But far more has been going on, including a scandal that exposes the real nature of the Labour right. The SKWAWKBOX will reveal this and more in the coming days.

The motions originally planned for the meeting and banned by the party included calls on Labour’s leadership to restore democracy to CLPs and a motion of no confidence in acting general secretary David Evans.

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  1. I recommend reading “The Hundred Years’ War On Palestine” for insights into the Zionist lobby here and in the US, stretching back 100 years. If Israel will murder Palestinian artists – and it has – there can be no doubt that stopping Corbyn would have been a priority.

    Now the Left cannot even determine the agenda for a CLP meeting because AS has been weaponised to the nth degree.

    1. That’s interesting. I’m just reading about China’s Long March and how Chiang Kai Shek was more concerned about destroying his own communists than fighting the Japanese. Popular theme today eh?

    1. Absolutely correct john thatchet.
      A right wing racist cult under Mandelson, Blair, Starmer Evans & Co 🔴

      1. I was reading that after John Smith died, the warmonger Blair pushed Gordon Brown aside with a back room deal to give him a turn.

        Back room
        deals are not democratic. What about the members.?

        Going along with that secret which excluded the members choices, did not end well for Brown.

        Brown also did everything to appease Mandelson and the Right Wing. I think McDonnell may have been advising Brown as he was advising Jeremy.

        ps interestingly, Ken was not a fan of McD in after a few years dealing with him. Ken admirably stood up for himself and defeated Bliar stooges , a man whose name slips … ah! Dobson. Then Ken defeated King a woman now living abroad i think.

        There is a good chance Jeremy could defeat anyone if he ran to be London mayor. It’s up to him but if u read post a few months ago, someone suggested it. That idea immediately caught my interest. I think he could win as an MP again but may be get a HUGE win standing for mayor. I think everyone knows that Starmer has done Jeremy a great injustice.
        I hope he is weighing up the possibility to do a George Galloway or a Ken Livingstone. Otherwise remain an MP. I posted at the time that he should reverse his decision to stand down. Esp with Covid-19. That ship has sailed but London Mayor he could rock the Starmer boat. What do u think❔❔❔

  2. Just how long do Starmer and Evans think they can get away with this type of thing? A day of reckoning will come for Starmer when he is challenged and for Evans when his appointment is not confirmed by Conference
    They are behaving like Kinnock in their purge of the Left but this is not the 1980s. That is their big mistake Thanks to Social Media and Left Media like Skwawkbox the members are kept fully informed of their antics and they will not be able to talk their way out of the nasty messes they have created.

    1. I was curious to know what size of golden parachute Evans might get if Conference doesn’t ratify his appointment, so I googled around ‘Labour remuneration committee’ – no results.
      Some results show Labour figures lobbying the business world to regulate executive pay, but Labour appears to keep its own salaried officers’ remuneration process secret.
      Not even a remuneration committee that I could find – can only assume NEC delegates on an ad hoc basis.
      A lousy example that makes Labour’s (McDonnell’s) previous pronouncements on executive pay in the real world look like hypocrisy – except the real world won’t make that point because it likes to keep its financial arrangements secret too.
      Or maybe my copy of google is broken.

    2. Smartboy..I am absolutely positive that the members are not fully informed otherwise how did we end up with a titled public schoolboy running roughshod over the democratic socialist Labour party.

      1. I think we ended up with Starmer as leader because he was plausible, said all the right things and as a result most people thought he was the best candidate. If he had adhered to his pre election promises he would have been a decent enough leader and we wouldn’t be in the mess we are in now.
        I voted for Rebecca on the basis that she was the best of a bad lot but I have to be honest and say that I found her campaign uninspiring and I have felt for a long time that she was chosen as the Left candidate because of her gender not her ability. Next time we need to leave such considerations aside if we want a socialist leader.

    3. The triumph of hope over reality. Puppetmeister Blair has been pulling the strings for some considerable time.

      1. sure has Steve This man is toxic. maybe he and Evens Starmer Jess Phillips et al can set up a right wing party and recute ex Tories who have been kicked out by Johnson along with some liberals. At least we would be clear who was what and what they stood for. Than true Labour offering a genuine alternative can start to develop. It will take time and some form of PR . It will appeal to the majority of the young voters who eventually will dominate so things will begin to change I hope.

      2. Yes Steve Richards Blair is pulling the strings because his massive wealth enables him buy friends in the PLP and elsewhere. He hasn’t yet got the message that he is probably the most despised politician in the UK and hopes, in my opinion, to one day return to front line politics. He wants to do this because his tens of millions aren’t enough for him. He wants the glory too. Won’t happen of course. He had his chance and he blew it big time so now he works in the shadows pushing his own agenda. He is a nasty bitter man but we should not underestimate the power his money gives him.

    4. That’s nearly a year away and my guess is that they hope to have provoked and purged away most socialists, by the time choosing delegates for conference comes around. However, in my CLP, I certainly see the Left walking away but I don’t see the centrists stepping up to take their place, by actually doing anything.

  3. I imagine more and more members of all stripes must be wishing Jeremy had stood firm instead of standing down.
    I get that the ‘no motions’ instruction was to all CLPs – but are all regions being equally Stalinist in enforcing the dictats?
    How does Region know which CLPs plan to table what motions – are motions required to be submitted to regional offices beforehand and has that always been the case?
    Are the CLPs of right wing MPs previously threatened with deselection being singled out for special attention – or are the CLPs of left wing MPs the target?
    Are regional offices completely dominated by the right, and has that always been the case?
    Are Regions just Kommissars – an anachronism of the pre-electronic-communication age – a means of transmitting ‘his master’s voice’ that could be easily replaced by emails from Southside?
    Because I don’t see the fucking point of them.
    Maybe I could find out with a bit of study but I’m hoping somebody already knows these things.

  4. Bath Labour party have Quite a substantial building there,they seem eager to work with the membership and the community. I would suggest that maybe a quick conversation for the homeless would be a excellent reply to HQ and a fantastic opportunity to help the homeless.?

    1. Hodge and her supporters are not worthy of anything to do with true Labour. They are right wing bigots.. They are a disgrace.

  5. Yes Peter indeed. The same Margaret Hodge who sang the praises of Jeremy’s character when he was the one of the few helping her to beat the BNP in her Barking and Dagenham constituency.

  6. An interesting concept ‘gender balance’………..specifically designed by the bourgeoisie to serve the interests of the bourgeoisie. Individuals can never be equal in a quota system that assesses candidates on ‘what’ they rather than ‘who’. A system designed to ignore the class struggle & ensure that the bourgeoisie can appoint more of their own. Now a useful weapon used to close down a CLP.

  7. Never thought Transparency in the Labour Party would be an issue to campaign on but you live and learn.

  8. Perhaps the ‘plan’, such as it is, is to put the CLP in special measures and take control of its funds and property.That would offset the fall in national subscriptions – for a while.

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