Thursday, September 28, 2017

Ménage à trios of pain, Interim Scottish leader Alex Rowley privately declares for Richard Leonard against Anas Sarwar, the Scottish Party is now in full civil war mode, angry Anas’ Blairities are seeing plots and skulduggery everywhere, Jeremy Corbyn's unity message ends up getting wrecked by fast moving events in Brighton, Anas’ Blairities need to jump ship

Dear All

One of the urban myths that political parties like to spout is that they are a unified party, everyone together all joyously marching along to the beat of the same drum, the truth is the opposite. Political parties are made up of different factions, all with their own little agenda where it be promoting a minority interest or particular policy. At Conference time, a stage managed event, the members listen to speeches which all tend to be upbeat and how they will change society for the better.

When we get fed up with the government of the day, we kick them out and the opposition then come in, it’s like a merry go round, and what happens on a merry go round, you go nowhere. The public who watch the merry go round do however see something, they see things getting worse; they see public money channelled to causes of people connected to the politicians.

Jeremy Corbyn stood on the Labour platform and boldly declared a promise of unity under Scottish Labour’s next leader. Although there are many sub groups in the Labour Party, the two you need to focus on are Progress (Blairite) and Momentum (CFS) in Scotland. These two groups have never been unified, and never will, in some respects, both these groups are led by the middle class, all come in the main from the same universities.

The Scottish leadership contest has descending into civil war amid claims of “plotting” and personal abuse, as if anyone cares, being dishonest isn’t something new in the Labour Party; you may remember the quote that ‘there are more snakes in the Labour Party than in an Indiana Jones movie’.

One thing I learned is it is better and wiser not to take people at their word in the party, and to be very careful who you associate with, some people in the Labour Party are just ‘users of people’.

Having got up and said:

“Whoever next leads Scottish Labour, our unifying socialist message will continue to inspire both south and north of the border."

Corbyn and the rest of us are finding out he spoke too soon!

At present, we have the Blairities and Momentum crowd accused each other of disloyalty and “barrel-scraping desperation”, Anas Sarwar’s campaign is in trouble, he is sinking, and all the punters who jumped into bed with him must now consider they backed the wrong horse..

In what must be seen as ‘joyous’, one of the campaigns has humorously issued a press release saying its rival was talking “pish”. When Kezia Dugdale jumped ship, she opened up a can of worms, there was the grooming’ of the next leader in waiting, she just done a runner. Kezia Dugdale, is saying what is going on at present was the sort of “internal squabbles” she spent “a huge amount of time” on in her two years as leader.

So, how do you sort out a squabble quickly as leader, you make a decision and tell the other side to ‘fuck off or there will be consequences’.

Obviously enjoying the row, SNP MP Stewart Hosie has emerged from obscurity and   said:

''Jeremy Corbyn’s message of unity has been blown apart by the open civil war now engulfing Scottish Labour. This conference has shown that Labour remain inconsistent, incoherent and unfit for government. Their leadership candidates and supporters in Scotland are tearing themselves apart in the most bitter bout of infighting the party has seen in many years.”

Rather like a man who cheats on his wife with another women, dipping your wick into younger flesh certainly did for Stewart Hosie standing, however his activities lying down must have surely made up for the transition. To be fair, his wife Shona Robison had let herself go and Stewart Hosie sought distraction elsewhere.

One of the bombs that has went off is when interim Scottish leader Alex Rowley said he and fellow left-wingers had planned for Ms Dugdale’s exit, that wasn’t unexpected, I said she was a lame duck leader years ago, too many public bad mistakes and errors of judgement.

Interim Scottish leader Alex Rowley has said he would be neutral in the leadership race but he has endorsed the pro-Corbyn candidate Richard Leonard over Anas Sarwar.

So, if elected how would Alex Rowley work with Anas Sarwar, I would expect badly, although we would get treated to some kind of show of support, photo op together, maybe even a hug or handshake.

Rowley has said:

“Although I’m neutral in the leadership, I believed that Richard Leonard has everything that we need to win in 2021”.

I said to Alex Rowley that Paul Sweeney would win Glasgow North East and that this was the seat in Glasgow with the best chance of being taken back, I also said to him, that this would be the only seat won.

He popped into the bookies later.

Rowley added:

“For some time now we [Mr Rowley and left-wing MSP Neil Findlay] have thought he was the best candidate, and most people within the Left in Scotland think likewise.”

Well, allow me to make a statement, Rowley and Findlay may think that Richard Leonard has everything that needed to win in 2021 but he won’t, Scottish Labour isn’t in a fit state to campaign, it needs a clear out.
And I would suggest strongly that Richard Leonard doesn’t know enough about campaigning to achieve a win. You don’t win races with the engine not working properly.

To show how much bad blood is doing the rounds, MSP Jackie Baillie, one of Mr Sarwar’s supporters, said

“Alex Rowley’s hypocrisy is incredibly disappointing. But what is most concerning is the revelations about a plot against Kezia Dugdale. Kez was elected with a huge majority and it will infuriate members to learn that some MSPs were working behind the scenes to undermine her and replace her with Richard Leonard. Richard must urgently answer questions about his role in this plot. This behaviour by the party establishment is a complete betrayal of the membership and every value we hold dear."

Ms Baillie was an early backer of Anas Sarwar, she backed the wrong horse and as to the ‘plot’, you could view this as forward planning, Kezia Dugdale struggled to lead and her stepping down was in her best interests.

A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives said:

“People already had their suspicions about Alex Rowley after last week’s FMQs stitch-up. This confirms he’s right behind Richard Leonard’s extremist drive to drag Scottish politics even further to the Left.”

Both the Tories and the SNP are dying for Anas Sarwar to get elected as leader, they don’t want pro-Corbyn candidate Richard Leonard.


Anas Sarwar increases the chances of infighting in the Scottish Labour Party because although the Momentum crowd never got their fight to remove Dugdale, they will simply shift focus to have it with Sarwar.

Finally, one thing to remember, both the ‘right’ and the ‘left’ of the Scottish Labour Party have a vacuum when it comes to talent, a collapsed activist base, no real direction and deal in small policies, I would suggest that this doesn’t add up to a government in waiting.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

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