During the Scottish independence referendum, the Spectator magazine put on a debate, featuring among the guests was George Galloway.
His speech was the best speech by far from anyone on either side of the political divide. It had all the things that the Nationalist speakers lacked, spirited defence, sense of history and importantly, wit, as always being delivered by
It is certainly worth a read but it is also worth listening to, that way you can get full impact of what he was conveying.
George Galloway has predicted
Scotland will back independence
within five years.
It won’t, the reason why it won’t, is like comedy, timing, David Cameron will not allow a second referendum during his term of office, and no political campaign in its true sense can go ahead without a section 30 order from Westminster.
George Galloway says the tide had turned "irrevocably" from Labour toward the SNP. It has to be said that the Labour Party ran an exceptional bad campaign, at 14 weeks out from the vote, I was surprised at the rudderless direction. At 10 weeks out, I wrote ‘fucking it all up’ on the blog, this was because instead of honing in on the serious issues, the Labour campaign was knee deep in doing ‘tat’.
Who starts a political campaign off on fitba, having scrapped the bottom of the barrel, their campaign went down further; this is a surprise when you think how slick the Labour Party had been in the Blair years.
During the BT campaign, I decided to observe the BT staff do an event without taking part, this was to satisfy my curiosity. The event was listed as canvassing in the Govan Ward, the start time was billed as 1.30 pm, five minutes passed and the team of 5 student types hadn’t moved, ten minutes and still they stood there, after allowing 17 minutes to pass, they eventually decided to start, no one else had turned up.
Nearly 100 minutes of work time was wasted.
At another event listed as leafleting, the person in charge turned up with no leaflets and decided that the group should do canvassing; however, they also didn’t bring canvassing packs.
This person is in the Labour Party so I am led to believe.
Now that the good times have ended, the Labour Party has to change, they will now have to work for every single vote, a sliver lining in their defeat is that the public did the party a favour, they got rid of deadwood which the Labour Party should have done years ago.
2016 is rather looking like the ‘cull’ will be continuing, something which Labour should bare in mind is that prior to the 2012 Council election in
the party did do a ‘cull’. This incidentally saved the party from losing at
that election, and there had been more than enough ammo to bury the party at
‘Culls’ work, however you have to know what it is you need to cull in the first place, 20 people got the chop as they were seen to be a liability to the party, I didn’t agree with all the selections made or the way the Labour Party had gone about it.
As to Scottish leadership frontrunner Kezia Dugdale, he refers to her as "this woman who is running" and added she "would not be at the races" if Labour had any big political figures left.
Ken Macintosh has also commented on Kezia Dugdale lack of political experience, Labour doesn’t need a touchy empathy minded politician to lead it; it needs someone who will sort out the mess of two decades of decline, some exceptional hard questions need to be addressed. People need to justify their existence especially if time, energy and resources have been put into getting them elected to public office. Some people need to be gotten rid of and some others need to be pushed upwards.
In politics it helps to get noticed, as I wrote above George Galloway has launched his bid to become Mayor of London in 2016. When you launch your bid, some go the way of saying something controversial, George Galloway has went this route; it is if anything what is termed good copy for the press. One of the key issues in his campaign is what he calls greater devolution for the capital. Awhile ago, someone at the LSE wrote an article on the idea of
Europe being considered not as
member states but as a group of city states. I chuck that in because it is an
idea although interesting not practical.
is at a crossroads, some people want the status quo, others are pushing towards
federalism and then there are the Nationalists wanting the break up of the United Kingdom.
"I think independence is probably nigh. The only way it could have been stopped is if we had got a Labour government last month and if that Labour government had begun to make a difference. But these next five Tory years are going to be very cold, and the SNP leadership seems to have the ball at their feet and know what to do with it.
"So I'd be very surprised if there wasn't another referendum in the course of this next five years, and I'd be very surprised if we managed to repeat the result we got last year. I'd take the same stand that I did last year. But I wouldn't be expecting to win."
People, ordinary people won the Scottish independence referendum, faced with the possibility of the SNP being the government of an independent
the people said No!
And despite the fake and insincere attempt by the SNP to have unpopular Nicola Sturgeon as a poor man’s Angela Merkel, likeable and popular, the ‘mouthwash isn’t working’.
When the Scottish Parliament was set up in 1999, some of the Labour MPs wanted to become MSPs,
reflects on that by saying:
"Me, [Ian] Davidson, [ Michael] Connarty, Robin Cook and many others were effectively told by the Blairites, 'You're not wanted at Holyrood'. That was a historic mistake."
I would agree that a mistake was made by Labour on that front, however, you can’t re-run history; you can only write the present and reflect on that past. Another interesting observation by him:
"Labour's problems in
Scotland began with the dawn of the
Blair era and the decision that was made to send a B team to Holyrood”.
I would have to agree with that point, Holyrood was treated like a plaything, if you were really serious about plying your trade in politics, then you really wanted to be at
Given a choice between quality of debates, Westminster is still the place to watch, and I don’t mean the mid session of PMQs which is just a show verging on farce, light entertainment for the masses with a bit of humour chucked in for good measure.
Certainly whoever is elected leader faces a tough and long haul back towards power, Jim Murphy did less than a year, he carried the can for something which wasn’t his fault; that said when in charge you take the responsibility. Jim Murphy watched as Labour had the worst result since 1918, and to make matters worse, it was against truly second rate opposition.
George Galloway does touch on the Labour figures of the past, such as Willie Ross, Donald Dewar, Bruce Millan, Gordon Brown, John Reid, Helen Liddell and Jimmy Allison.
These people did leave their marks in various forms.
But we live in the present, when Labour lost in 2007; the Holyrood group of MSPs did nothing of note for that entire term of the Parliament. Instead of pandering to see if they can copy the Nationalists, Labour needs a leader who has a vision of a fairer
Scotland and will deliver it. So
many promises were made in the past and not delivered on.
The new leader needs to ban Councillors being employees of MP, MSP and MEPs, also the salary of councillors should be raised to £30,000, and for that members would be expected to be full time, Monday to Friday, nine to five. Obviously the salary issue would depend on attaining power.
A return to old Labour values that built the party is needed but not old Labour practices.
Although, I would agree that George Galloway has made a lot of good points, his final analysis is off, but it makes for an interesting read, George has been away from the Scottish pond so his overview has gaps not knowing the personalities.
And he is standing for public office so it might explain his doom and gloom scenario.
One thing that Kezia Dugdale better click onto rather quickly is that the 15 minutes at FMQs doesn’t equate to 168 hours in a week.
Finally, as to the London Mayor contest, I would say if no one else comes forward, then Labour should run with Tessa Jowell, and for the Tories, I would take a chance on Sol Campbell, mind you, Zac Goldsmith does strike me as someone in need of promotion to junior Minister.
The Campaign for Human Rights at