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MPs’ and Sarwar’s strike defiance means Starmer has made himself look weak and tiny no matter what he does

Labour back-benchers joined by Nav Mishra and Alex Sobel – and even leader of Scottish Labour – in supporting striking rail workers. Starmer’s initial spinelessness now means he looks weak whether he acts against them or not

Nasty shock: Sarwar’s ‘rebellion’

Keir Starmer is in a dilemma of his own making this evening after front bench MPs – and Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar – defied his strict order to front-benchers not to appear on picket lines during today’s first day of strikes by RMT rail union members.

A string of back-bench MPs, not all of them particularly on the left, were proudly pictured standing with picketing workers – and were joined by party whip Nav Mishra and shadow minister Alex Sobel. Twisting the knife still further, even Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar did the same, along with at least one other MSP.

Shadow minister Sam Tarry, said to be in a relationship with deputy leader Angela Rayner, rather feebly tried to dance between the raindrops by tweeting an old picture of himself at an earlier picket line, given away by his and others’ hats and coats on one of the warmest days of the year so far.

By his own idiocy and spinelessness in repudiating the strike and ordering his senior MPs not to go anywhere near it, Starmer has now put himself in a position where he looks tiny and weak no matter what he does: if he doesn’t sack the defiant front-benchers, he is a party leader whose MPs don’t fear or respect him and defied him without consequence.

But if he does sack them, then he looks small-minded and vindictive, looks even more like a weasel to union supporters – and still looks like a party leader whose MPs didn’t fear or respect him or even care that he might sack them, compared to being seen to betray the unions who founded the party. So the RMT looks big, while Starmer makes Antman look enormous by comparison.

And all this for the sake of a position that is – yet again – totally out of touch with public opinion and mood. When even the editor of a right-wing northern paper is backing the workers and calling out the cowards in the Tory government, and the public sees, despite a constant propaganda barrage, that the strikers have little choice, Starmer’s decision to stab the striking workers in the back was as pointless as it is self-defeating.

Small wonder that even the party right is now said to despise him and be sharpening the knives for his removal.

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    1. I genuinely think this could be the moment it becomes terminal for Starmer, for exactly the reason this article explains. Starmer has by choice put himself in a no-win position where even those on the right of the party are publicly defying him. He has been stupid in terms of political strategy and hopeless in terms of policy, and even his supporters can no longer deny it.

      I found this comment from his spokesman surreal: “Keir’s Labour party is on the side of the public, and our decisions are driven by that. Not everyone will like it, and we’re prepared for that, but that’s how we’ll prove ourselves as a serious operation, a serious government in waiting, and is how we’ll win elections,” the source said.

      If that spokesman truly believes that, they are so stupid they could be a candidate for the Tory cabinet.

      1. Ultraviolet, I agree with most of what you say including the part that the spokesman much be stupid if he believes that this is how labour wins elections.
        However, I don’t believe they are anyone as stupid in the Tory cabinet. They maybe appear stupid but they are very good at protecting their interest and that of their rich donors.
        By comparison Starmer and his spokesman are atrocious at protecting their best interest, unless of course their best interest is to ensure the survival of Boris Johnson as PM and ensuring another Tory’s victory at the next GE.

  1. Starmer missed his chance when the ballot went ahead. That was when 70% of the RMT members could have been suspended on suspicion of anti-semitism. Too late now.
    Seriously though, he’s kaput, finished, a busted flush. He’s done his job: ruined the Labour party, and now he can be retired. Or left alone with a loaded revolver.

      1. Ugh! Now I’m stuck with that image for the rest of the day. Cheers, Wobbly!

  2. Left \right centre and just about any working class person who if informed correctly should be able to get behind this Strike.Hopefully the public realise that this government under the thumb of the unelected world order need to be ejected from running the country down..IF starmer can be cleared off theres a small chance of reforming a new party on the foundation of the old labour party.with the unions holding the key 🔑to government.Anything is possible at the moment but the fulcrum could be this strike.The conservative and unionist party need to be obliterated along with mr partition Ireland Sir keir starmer and his limp wristed shadow cabinet.

    1. Glad to see Mick lynch commenting on how covid has been used as a smokescreen for attacking the working class
      most certainly in Britain were both conservative and Labour were partying without a care in the world whilst terriffied people had breakdowns,died or were put down .This dispute needs to be more than pay and conditions but a complete reset this time for the working class of Britain….not the one percent

  3. I seem to remember someone (can’t remember who exactly) raving on about that tarry one. Think it was to do with some NEC or union position or other

    What a gobshite he’s turned out to be.

    Anyroad, keef…looking weak.

    To think… He thinks he’s got what it takes to run a country 🤦 sure Vlad’d be shitting himself if ever keef became PM.

    1. Toffee
      Couldn’t agree with you more about Sam Tarry – such a disappointment he has turned out to be. I always rated him highly but he has shown his true colours and I am now totally disgusted with him.
      You are also right about Starmer – he is demonstrating every day that he is useless and couldn’t organise a booze up in a brewery never mind run a country but then I am convinced his remit is not to win an election and run the country – its to rid the party of Socialists antiZionists and those capable of independent thought, lose the next couple of elections and when the country is sick to death of the Tories let a completely neutered right wing pro Zionist party win the 2030 (or thereabouts) election.
      He has completely sold out the Labour party and will soon ride off into the sunset to reap his reward – House of Lords lucrative directorships etc

  4. I still can’t believe that those members left in the Labour Party can’t see Sir Keir for what he is. How can anyone with an ounce of integrity remain a member of a political party led by him?

  5. How can anyone with an ounce of integrity remain a member of a political party led by him?

    Maybe they think they have the same integrity keef thinks he has.

  6. Again – attacks on those of us who are still hanging
    around ..

    Be sure – there are many of us who do know what
    Starmer is like but support those in our local
    parties and are working for them ..

    Starmer will either be kicked out – or maybe be
    offered some plush job ..

    The main thing is to be ready and waiting to find
    someone better to replace him and that will
    require some guile

    1. Again – attacks on those of us who are still hanging around ..

      Wouldn’t call any criticism of those hanging around an ‘attack,’ per se.

      But I DO struggle to see the rationale in actually paying to keep the creature and it’s regime in position, only to complain about it.

      And especially when you KNOW he’s got more chance of recanting and relenting than rees-mogg has of moving to a two up – two down in Norris Green.

      The only way to lance the boil is to abandon them to their cesspit. Deprive them of your finances – as well as your vote.

      1. Toffee
        The main thing that has made me keep my membership is the fact that in the past I and tens of thousands like me resigned in disgust over Iraq and Tony Blairs warmongering. Looking back I think that was a mistake because by leaving we gave him free rein to pursue his right wing agenda. He became unstoppable – he turned his back on the working class, introduced PFI, tuition fees etc
        As it is now, so many decent socialists anti Zionists and independent thinkers have been expelled or resigned that Starmer like Blair is getting it all his own way – history repeating itself.
        I don’t know if I am doing the right thing or not by retaining my membership- the behaviour of Starmer and the rest of them sickens me- but for now I’ have decided to stay put.

      2. Smartboy, I spewed it not long after bliar got shut of clause IV.

        That was enough to tell me how far the right had their claws in. I gagged while putting my ‘x’ next to illeagles name in two subsequent elections.

        I was almost prepared to give ed moribumd the benefit of the (great amoumt of) doubt, after a friend tried to convince me at least it wasn’t David moribund…But then – weird ed bollocks and austerity lite told me things hadn’t changed a bit since bliar

        And illeagles still the mp here – even after the way it shat on its own clp…aided and abetted by the right wing CLP parasites.

        I won’t do it any more. And I certainly won’t fund it out of my own pocket…or suggest anyone else fund it.

  7. It’s edifying that so many Labour MPs are defying the stoat’s instructions and publicly backing the heroic and desperate workers resorting to industrial action.

    Keir Starmer is “… a dilemma of his own making”. Wonderfully put, SW. Penetrating!

    But it also tells us how far the Labour party is from its own soul, how it lost sight of the very people it exists to serve.. An MP for less than 6 years, a single “senior” (shadow) role (in which he was “weasel-like”, sneaky, untrustworthy and insincere), then straight to the top job. For heavens sake, unpaid intern ships at the Guardian last longer. The Labour party, by contrast, makes an unproven intern its leader.

    Sure, dubious backers and questionable decisions as DPP convince most former and even some current members that Sir Weasel was a bad choice, but ask yourself, how could a people’s party allow itself to make the only living British member of an economically hard-right oligarchs’ pressure group, the Trilateral Commission, a member of the PLP, never mind its leader?

  8. SteveH is still awaiting instructions from Tel Aviv on which particular dismissive snark message he must post today.

  9. The more I think and read about it the more the
    sheer incompetence I see in New Labour _2 ..
    So we have the sum :

    Incompetence plus Chicanery = a Hollowed
    Out Labour Party

    Result: Opposition wilderness for the distant
    future ..

    Ive just been reading the Diary of an MPs Wife
    by Sasha Swire*** and am reminded about the
    crazy shenanigans of Summer/Autumn 2019
    with its Brexit confusion. While not agreeing
    with Ref2 which was designed to anger those
    who voted “Leave” with its arrogant assumptions
    I was nevertheless equally angered by the arrogance
    of those who assumed that all those who voted
    “Leave” desired a “hard Brexit”.

    To be absolutely fair I think that the intransigence
    of ERG and the manipulations of Cummings did
    not help but the result was that Labour Party
    Brexit policy ended up as a Dogs Breakfast
    Swires Diary indicates and as I remember. Of
    course we now KNOW whose dead hand was
    responsible for the confusion – this is not
    surprising .. Not that the resulting agreement
    made by Johnson was not also a dogs
    breakfast ..

  10. Ive just been reading the Diary of an MPs Wife
    by Sasha Swire***

    I meant to write this footnote – but forgot!

    *** I disagree with most of Sashas politics also
    some of her account – nevertheless her
    revelations did result in MY memories
    being jogged ..

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