Category: Jeremy Corbyn
‘Clear & present danger’: Hammond warns ‘Marxist’ Corbyn will turn Britain into Venezuela (VIDEO)
| October 2, 2017 | 8:24 pm | Jeremy Corbyn, UK | No comments

‘Clear & present danger’: Hammond warns ‘Marxist’ Corbyn will turn Britain into Venezuela (VIDEO)

‘Clear & present danger’: Hammond warns ‘Marxist’ Corbyn will turn Britain into Venezuela (VIDEO)
Tory Chancellor Philip Hammond used his speech at the Conservative Party Conference to attack Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and his “Marxist” policies.

Despite party members – and the rest of the nation – hoping to hear about the financial state of Britain, and whether the well-worn Tory ax of austerity will finally be shelved, Hammond instead focused his address on Labour.

Opposition leader Corbyn was mentioned at least a dozen times.

Alongside Corbyn warnings, Hammond talked about the leadership of North Korea, Zimbabwe and Venezuela – not subjects often found in the chancellor’s red box.

The ‘Remain’ supporter – known as ‘Spreadsheet Phil’ – used his keynote speech in Manchester to attack the opposition, despite Tory members hoping to get some news on the autumn budget.

Brexit was of course mentioned – four times – in the 35-minute speech.

Attacking the opposition, Hammond said Corbyn and Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell ought to be “treated almost as museum pieces, dinosaurs, worth preserving for the sake of historical curiosity.”

Speaking of history, Hammond also talked about Labour’s record in the late 1970s, more times than he mentioned Britain’s looming break from the EU, or perhaps the chaos tearing apart Theresa May’s cabinet.

“It’s a wicked and cynical business offering superficially simple solutions to complex challenges,” Hammond said.

As the Tories attempt to win over younger voters with policies on tuition fees and Help To Buy schemes, Hammond warned young people are not being given facts by Labour.

“A new generation is being tempted down a dangerous path,” he told the conference.

“We have to explain why and how the market economy works and the role of competition as the consumer’s friend.

“I think we owe it to the next generation to show how Corbyn’s Marxist policies will inevitably lead us back to where Britain was in the late 1970s.”

Hammond mocked the Labour leader and his party conference speech in Brighton, again insisting Corbyn is more regressive than he is progressive.

“He is a clear and present danger to our prosperity damaging our economy, even in opposition his loose talk already deterring the entrepreneurs and the investors we need for our future success.”

Hammond did however offer an apology for the Tory party’s poor performance in the June election.

Yet he managed even then to make it about the Labour leader, who according to a new poll enjoys a four point lead ahead of the government after his Brighton speech.

“I want to thank our financial supporters as well – we need your support more than ever as the union barons mobilize their power behind Corbyn,” he said

“Whether it was time or money, I know you all invested a great deal in the 2017 election and I am sorry we were not able to deliver the result we all hoped for.”

Can Corbyn’s Labour be the West’s new political center?
| September 29, 2017 | 8:25 pm | Jeremy Corbyn | No comments

Can Corbyn’s Labour be the West’s new political center?

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Jeremy Corbyn has all the momentum. Britain’s opposition leader, an inveterate leftist, presided over his Labour Party’s annual conference in the seaside town of Brighton this week and preached an uncompromisingly socialist vision of the future. And the curious part? It doesn’t seem to be hurting his chances of winning power in the slightest.

After being written off as a fringe anachronism who would take Labour into the wilderness for a generation, Corbyn is now solidly the bookmakers’ favorite to be the next British prime minister. That’s in part a reflection of widespread disaffection with the ruling Tories and the cynicism of Prime Minister Theresa May, who misread the British public’s mood in calling for early elections this year in a bid to consolidate her own position.

That backfired, with Corbyn’s Labour shrugging off prophecies of doom and significantly closing the gap on the Conservatives’ once-commanding majority in parliament. May’s lurching management of the Brexit process has only compounded her unpopularity.

The @ArchitectsUK are taking over my Snapchat and Instagram accounts ahead of my Labour Conference speech – live streamed from midday

— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn)

But it’s also a sign that Corbyn’s message is resonating. A decade removed from the neoliberal centrism of former Prime Minister Tony Blair, Corbyn’s Labour has moved strikingly left, promising uplift for the dispirited British working class and the disciplining of corporate elites. Corbyn’s platform seeks the nationalization of a host of utilities, including the railways, the abolition of tuition fees for universities and increased taxes on the wealthy.

Not long ago, it would have been impossible to imagine a program this radical gaining traction in the West. Now, it may be a winning ticket.

In a speech Wednesday, Corbyn declared that “2017 may be the year when politics finally caught up with the crash of 2008” — when a financial crisis upended European governments, wrecked the social contract with citizens in a number of countries and fueled anti-establishment movements across the continent.

From the Netherlands to France to Germany, traditional center-left parties that once dominated politics suffered stinging defeats in elections this year. Voters associated them with the ruling liberal establishment and blamed them for growing inequities in their societies, as well as the grinding austerity demanded by major lenders and international organizations elsewhere on the continent.

We are now the political mainstream.

— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn)

Corbyn doesn’t have that problem. Backed by a strong grass-roots movement, his straightforward socialism seems a genuine alternative to the ham-fisted schemes of the Tories, whose championing of Brexit could lead Britain toward economic calamity. Although Labour politicians remain split on their approach to Brexit, they’re happy to let the Tories own it while promoting their own social agenda.

This week, Corbyn confidently declared that “we are now the political mainstream — our manifesto and our policies are popular because that’s what most people in our country actually want, not what they’re told they should want.”

Looking on somewhat euphorically, left-wing Guardian columnist Owen Jones styled Corbyn as the next in line in a succession of epoch-defining prime ministers, following Clement Attlee, the architect of Britain’s postwar welfare state, and Margaret Thatcher, the conservative giant who rejected an era of state socialism in favor of unshackled capitalism.

“At the time of the 2008 financial crash there was a widespread misplaced schadenfreude on the left. Surely market fundamentalism had been discredited; surely the west’s ruling economic elites — and their political representatives — would be held to account; surely the left would rise from the ashes,” Jones wrote, gesturing to what fueled Britain’s Brexit vote and the broader populist mood in Europe. “Instead came a tidal wave of austerity, devastating attacks on the remaining social gains of social democracy, and the poison of rightwing xenophobia.”

But Corbyn is rising at a moment when a new direction seems possible. “It is often said that elections can only be won from the center ground,” he said on Wednesday. “And in a way that’s not wrong — so long as it’s clear that the political center of gravity isn’t fixed or unmovable, nor is it where the establishment pundits like to think it is.”

Corbyn’s many critics insist that he is still too far left, especially on foreign policy, where they claim he clings to a worldview more skeptical of the ambitions and effects of Western power than the actions of left-wing regimes or even anti-Western militant groups overseas. But even there, he may not suffer politically.

“The Cold War is ancient history to first-time voters,” noted Rafael Behr, another Guardian columnist, who pointed to Corbyn’s supposed soft spot for the Soviet Union. “To remember two Germanys you have to be well into your 30s, and the memory alone is not enough to guarantee suspicion of grey-haired politicians who once equivocated over preference for the western one.”

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Britain’s conservative press seems to concur. “It’s time to admit it’s the Tories who are stuck in the past, not Jeremy Corbyn,” declared a column this week in the Daily Telegraph, a newspaper identified with the Tories.

“The real danger is that the Tories might have vaccinated Corbyn. By botching their attacks, they may have given him immunity,” lamented the Spectator, a right-of-center magazine. “When they point to all his hard-left positions, his dodgy economics and his sympathy for various terrorist groups, voters might just shrug and say: ‘We’ve heard it all before.’ At the same time, Corbyn sounds very different to how he did two years ago. Voters tuning into him for the first time will find his agenda presented in a far more seductive and less sectarian way.”

Although Britain’s political situation is unique, Corbyn’s continued ascent may echo elsewhere. Across the pond in the United States, there’s a right-wing government battered by low approval ratings and burdened by the ideological contradictions of its own party. And who is the most popular politician in America? A gray-haired democratic socialist who is sticking to his beliefs and calling for sweeping reforms that no one would have taken seriously just a decade ago.

Jeremy Corbyn – Britain’s Prime Minister in All But Name
| September 28, 2017 | 7:43 pm | Jeremy Corbyn, UK | No comments

Britain's opposition Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn delivers his keynote speech at the Labour Party Conference in Brighton, Britain, September 27, 2017.

Jeremy Corbyn – Britain’s Prime Minister in All But Name

© REUTERS/ Toby Melville

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Neil Clark

Jeremy Corbyn’s inspirational speech at this week’s Labour Party conference, in which he pledged to develop “a new model of economic management to replace the failed dogmas of neo-liberalism,” was arguably the best address by a Labour leader to the party faithful since Harold Wilson’s in 1975.

Back then, the four-times general election winner warned delegates about the dangers of Thatcherism.

Sadly, Wilson’s predictions that the ever-narrowing gap between rich and poor would be reversed, came true.

On Wednesday, September 27, Corbyn made it clear that if he does become Prime Minister, the era of Thatcherism — and its faux-progressive variant, Blairism, will be at an end.

The financial crash of 2008, brought about by the greed of the banksters and the reckless deregulation of the financial services sector ought to have seen neoliberalism consigned to the dustbin of history. Instead it led only to an even more extreme version of crony capitalism — one in which the burden of paying for the bankers’ bailout was placed on the shoulders of ordinary people. The result — as Corbyn stated in Brighton — has been the “longest fall in people’s pay since records began.”

In 2016, figures showed that UK wages had dropped around 10% since the financial crisis — the worst in anywhere in Europe except Greece

At the same time, it was reported that the richest 1% now owned 24% of the nation’s entire wealth. You don’t have to be a 21st century Che Guevara or Rosa Luxemburg to acknowledge that the situation was grossly unfair and that radical change was needed.

Yet, incredibly, until Corbyn came along — to take the Labour leadership as a 500-1 shot in 2015 — there had been no serious challenge to the ruling neoliberal orthodoxies from the leading parties. Ed Miliband, the Labour leader from 2010-15, did edge away from Blairism, but it was too cautious a move to persuade enough voters to return to the Labour fold. The party could have won the 2015 election with a bolder program, but Labour’s share of the vote only went up 1.4% from its poor showing in 2010 under Gordon Brown.

Contrast this with what’s happened under Corbyn, the man who Establishment pundits assured us was leading Labour off a cliff. Labour party membership has surged from just over 200,000 at the time of the 2015 general election, to over 550,000 today. In this year’s general election, Labour received 40% of the vote, recording its biggest increase in vote share since 1945.

Because it’s ignored the advice of the know-it-all “moderates” — embedded in the neocon media — and adopted populist anti-neoliberal policies, its bucked the trend we’ve seen across the continent. Labour’s fortunes are in stark contrast with those of the German SPD, who only this week slumped to their lowest share of the vote since World War Two.

ln his conference speech, Corbyn quite correctly stated that Labour was now the political mainstream and occupied the genuine center-ground of public opinion — a point I made in a recent Sputnik column.

While those hostile to Corbyn call Labour under his leadership “hard-left” or “revolutionary,” the truth is that the party is simply putting forward sensible, practical solutions to the countries biggest problems — and advocating policies that were accepted by all the main parties as being common sense in the post-war era.

Take public ownership. Corbyn’s support for this is presented by his critics as evidence that he is a dangerous, wild-eyed extremist hell-bent on turning Britain into North Korea. In fact, public ownership of the utilities was the norm in Britain until Thatcherism and was supported by post-war Tories too. The same goes for rent controls, which were introduced in the First World War and only abolished in full in 1988.

Corbyn’s foreign policy also marks a break with the neocon extremism of the past thirty years. In his Thursday speech, the former Chair of Stop the War declared, “We should stand firm for peaceful solutions to international crises.”

He quite correctly linked the increase in terrorism to neocon/liberal interventionist foreign policies.

“We also know that terrorism is thriving in a world our governments have helped to shape, with its failed states, military interventions and occupations where millions are forced to flee conflict or hunger. We have to do better and swap the knee-jerk response of another bombing campaign for long-term help to solve conflicts rather than fuel them,” he told conference.

It’s fair to say that Corbyn’s speech brought the house down.

Labour activists present left the conference on a real high and with a renewed sense of purpose. I certainly can’t recall any address by a Labour leader that’s been as moving, or as thought-provoking, for over forty years. But of course not everyone is happy. Obviously Conservatives are going to attack Corbyn — that’s their job. Corbyn’s bitterest enemies though are the faux-left who are angry that Labour has ditched Blairism and gained votes for doing so.

These pro-war “progressives” initially said they were against Corbyn because he was leading the party to electoral oblivion.

Now they accuse him of leading a “cult.”

It’s clear that most of them would rather the Tories win than have a Labour party come to power on a program offering the prospect of real change.

Corbyn — make no mistake — is on a roll, but ironically it’s his popularity which could delay his entry to Downing Street. Opinion polls since the election have shown a consistent lead for Labour as the party has built on the support they received in June.

The Conservatives know that to go to the country now would be suicidal. And even if the polls turned round and showed the Tories consistently ahead — could they really risk an election knowing what happened to them in June — when they were around 20 points ahead when the election was called?

That said, parliamentary maths means that it’s going to be hard to see the Tories lasting the full five years. And if Theresa May is replaced by Boris Johnson, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Ruth Davidson or anyone else, the pressures to seek democratic legitimacy via a general election will be great.

Jeremy Corbyn may have to wait a while before he gets the keys to Number Ten, but in one sense, he’s there already. Even without being PM he’s already had a major impact on government policy. As he said in Brighton:

“Conference, your efforts in the election campaign stopped the Tories in their tracks. The election result has already delivered one Tory U-turn after another over some of their most damaging policies. The cruel dementia tax was scrapped within three days of being announced. Plans to bring back grammar schools have been ditched. The threat to the pensions’ triple lock abandoned. Withdrawal of Winter Fuel payments dumped. The pledge to bring back fox hunting dropped. And their plan to end free school meals in primary schools has been binned… It is Labour that is now setting the agenda and winning the arguments for a new common sense about the direction our country should take.”

Before Corbyn made his speech I was invited by the BBC to give my assessment of Labour under his leadership. I tweeted:

To which I received the reply from Roy Pearce:

Yesterday, Corbyn didn’t sound like a Prime Minister in waiting. He sounded like the man who’s already there.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

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First they laughed, then he was dangerous… now Jeremy Corbyn is ‘favorite for PM’
| September 27, 2017 | 8:23 pm | Jeremy Corbyn, political struggle, UK | No comments

First they laughed, then he was dangerous… now Jeremy Corbyn is ‘favorite for PM’

First they laughed, then he was dangerous... now Jeremy Corbyn is ‘favorite for PM’
Jeremy Corbyn has a spring in his step at this year’s Labour Party Conference. He’s gone from fighting for his political survival to preparing to walk into Downing Street. At least that’s what his former critics are saying.

In six months the Labour leader has gone from being outrageous outsider to prime minister-in-waiting.

Corbyn will address party delegates in Brighton this week to launch his battle for Downing Street, as tottering Tory Theresa May fends off leadership challenges from within her own cabinet.

And while Brexit goes badly, Labour has every opportunity to seize power.

“Six months ago the opposition was in a battle for survival. Now it is preparing for government,” the latest edition of the Economist crows.

Just six months ago, the exact same publication deemed Corbyn unfit to even oppose the PM in an election.

The Economist, an influential weekly magazine, said Corbyn was a “danger” who would take Britain, and Labour, “to the loony left.”

Headlines slated Corbyn, calling him an outsider who “will badly disappoint his young supporters.”

Then, a week before June’s snap election, the same publication accused Corbyn of oppression.

“No economic liberal, Mr. Corbyn does not much value personal freedom either,” the Economist said.

“An avowed human-rights campaigner, he has embraced left-wing tyrants such as Hugo Chávez and Fidel Castro (a ‘champion of social justice’), who locked up opponents and muzzled the press.

“Mr. Corbyn has spent a career claiming to stand for the oppressed while backing oppressors.”

But the tune has changed significantly.

Days ago, the Economist reported the bookies are now backing Corbyn.

“NOT even Jeremy Corbyn could quite picture himself as leader … Bookmakers have him as favourite to be Britain’s next prime minister,” it reported.

In June, Corbyn’s odds of becoming Britain’s next Prime Minister were at 9-4. Now they have been cut to 4-1 with UK bookmakers like Paddy Power.

Meanwhile, May’s address in Florence appears to have had little effect in Brussels.

It came a week after the PM saw off a challenge from her foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, who had his own vision for Brexit printed in a British newspaper.

That move alone propelled Corbyn’s crusade for Number 10, a senior source told the Telegraph.

“A lot of the party is fine with what [Boris] has done with Brexit but not if we end up with Jeremy Corbyn as Prime Minister,” the source said.

“It [The Tory government] could fall in six months.”

‘Coalition of Conservative chaos’: Corbyn savages May government at conference (VIDEO)
| September 27, 2017 | 8:14 pm | Jeremy Corbyn, political struggle, UK | No comments

‘Coalition of Conservative chaos’: Corbyn savages May government at conference (VIDEO)

‘Coalition of Conservative chaos’: Corbyn savages May government at conference (VIDEO)
Jeremy Corbyn has insisted it is time for Prime Minister Theresa May to stand down as her “chaotic” cabinet fails to get Brexit on track and Labour support swells.

The Labour leader who was met with raucous applause and cheering told delegates in Brighton the days of the Tory Government are numbered.

“We meet here as a united party – advancing in every part of Britain,” he said.

Thousands have gathered in Brighton for the annual Labour Party Conference, just as cracks begin to spread in the Conservative cabinet.

Desperate to get Brexit back on track, Tory Prime Minister Theresa May appeared in Florence last week, asking the European Union for a two-year transition deal.

As Corbyn critics turn towards the left-wing leader, labeling him the ‘next prime minister,’ a powerful speech could push more support his way.

Six months into negotiations, Corbyn will stand before Labour supporters and call for May to buck up or back away from the negotiating table.

“The Tories are more interested in posturing for personal advantage than in getting the best deal for Britain,” he said.

“Never has the national interest been so ill-served on such a vital issue. If there were no other reason for the Tories to go, their self-interested Brexit bungling would be reason enough.

“So I have a simple message to the cabinet: for Britain’s sake pull yourself together or make way.”

During the conference Labour has unveiled its plans to nationalize mail, rail and other public services, as well as calling for an end to Private Finance Initiatives (PFI) in Britain.

Corbyn vowed to put an end to inequalities in Britain.

“Let the next Labour government transform Britain by genuinely placing power in the hands of the people – the creative, compassionate and committed people of our country,” he said.

“The disregard for rampant inequality, the hollowing out of our public services, the disdain for the powerless and the poor have made our society more brutal and less caring.

“Now that graded regime has a tragic monument – the chilling wreckage of Grenfell Tower, a horrifying fire in which dozens perished. An entirely avoidable human disaster.

“Grenfell is not just the result of bad political decisions. It stands for a failed and broken system, which Labour must and will replace.”

Corbyn vowed to regenerate parts of Britain for communities, not wealthy developers with Labour policies.

“We will control rents when the younger generations housing costs are three times more than those of their grandparents,” he said.

“Rent controls exist in many cities across the world and I want out cities to have those powers too.

“We also need to a tax for undeveloped land held by developers.”

“Councils will have to win a ballot of existing tenants and lease holders before redevelopment can take place. Real regeneration, for the many, not the few.”

The Labour leader said he believes there is a real chance of a Labour Government.

“We meet here as a united party – advancing in every part of Britain,” he said.

“In June, we won the largest increase in the Labour vote since 1945

“Labour’s best vote for a generation.

“It has put the Tories on notice and Labour on the threshold of power.

“We have become a Government in waiting.”

Corbyn said Britain is locked in a situation where “big decisions (are) left to the elite”.

“People are consumers first and citizens second,” he said.

“The kind of democracy that we should be aiming for is one where people have a continuing say in how society is run, how their workplace is run, how their local schools or hospitals are run.

“That means increasing the public accountability and democratization of local services that Andrew Gwynne was talking about on Monday.

“It means democratically accountable public ownership for the natural monopolies, with new participatory forms of management, as Rebecca Long-Bailey has been setting out.”

Corbyn also addressed the multibillion-pound technology industry, insisting he will ensure machines do not replace humans in the workplace.

He will also pledged to bring about “an education and training system from the cradle

Corbyn denies to condemn imperialist interference in Venezuela

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Corbyn denies to condemn imperialist interference in Venezuela
Once an opportunist, always an opportunist. The leader of Britain’s Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn declined to take a firm and clear position about the developments in Venezuela. Instead, he condemned “violence done by all sides”, thus calling for dialogue to end civil unrest.
Speaking after an event in Crawley, West Sussex, Corbyn sounded more like the Pope who wishes “the end of violence”. “I’m very sad at the lives that have been lost in Venezuela” he said. “The people who have died – either those on the streets or security forces that have been attacked by people on the street – all of those lives are terrible for the loss of them” he said.
“There has to be a dialogue and a process that respects the independence of the judiciary and respects the human rights of all” said Corbyn. Asked by the reporters whether he condemned Maduro’s actions, Corbyn said: “What I condemn is the violence that’s been done by any side, by all sides, in all this. Violence is not going to solve the issue”.
Apparently, Mr.Corbyn didn’t find a single word to say about the- led by the U.S.- imperialist interference in Venezuela. A supposed supporter of Venezuela’s Bolivarian process, Corbyn decided to remain silent about the threats of the U.S. government against Venezuela and the imperialist plans for regime overthrow.
Being a political ‘Pontius Pilate’, Jeremy Corbyn said he supported France’s call for peace talks, and said it “should be regionally based to improve the situation there”. “There has to be respect for the constitution and respect for the independence of the judiciary,” he added.
This controversial and opportunistic stance of Corbyn doesn’t surprise us at all. It is in the political nature of social democrats, pure servants of the capitalist system who appear with a supposedly left-wing “radical” mask, to avoid taking a firm and clear position against imperialism. Despite their rhetoric, social democrats like Corbyn will be always, sooner or later, exposed as pure servants of the bourgeois interests.
Corbyn told Venezuelan President Maduro that EU is ‘bad for the poor’
| July 27, 2017 | 8:00 pm | Jeremy Corbyn, Nicolas Maduro | No comments