Labour is in danger of losing all the energy and hope that we saw from Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.

Poor governance, a lack of transparency and a lack of accountability are undermining the credibility of the whole party. These issues include:

  • Under-resourced CLPs unable to function effectively as a result of the centralisation of funding. A survey of CLPs by Stand up for Labour found that over 60% do not have office space. The current distribution of members’ subscriptions is grotesquely centralised (For every standard rate member who pays £52.56 per year, only £2.50 goes to the local party and a whopping £50.06 goes to the central party). Most CLPs can only dream of following the example of Broxtowe’s Labour Hub.
  • Vast sums of money being spent in the party’s name without consultation with the NEC. This was clearly the case last week where £600,000 of party funds were spent on settling a case out of court.
  • Party accounts that fail to disclose anything but the bare minimum of information (see the discussion with on party accounts on ‘Labour Funding Scandal’ at 31 minutes)
  • NEC members not seeing the agenda for NEC meetings until they arrive at the meeting (see Mark McDonald on ‘Whatsapp stopped the coup against Corbyn’)
  • NEC members being denied access to accounts or budget information (see Gurinder Singh Josan and Jon Lansman on ‘Labour Funding Scandal’ at 36 minutes)
  • NEC members being denied access to information about party membership (see Ann Henderson’s comments on ‘Is Labour run by bureaucrats?’ at 1:07 minutes).
  • A culture of nepotism that blocks people standing for office (witnessed by many in ‘Is Labour Run By Bureaucrats?’ and seen in the leaked report)
  • A culture of bullying and racism (witnessed by many in ‘Is Labour Run By Bureaucrats?’ and seen in the leaked report)

The most damning overall point is that the NEC is not running the party – the bureaucracy is.

The only hope we have of resolving all these issues is through mobilising the membership behind the NEC and this can only be achieved if the NEC election becomes a full-blown campaign.

We need to take this opportunity to discuss ways we can make the party accountable, transparent and credible.

All NEC candidates need to address the fact that, as things stand, the NEC is not running the party. We desperately need NEC members who accept that this is happening and who also won’t accept it happening any longer.

I’m dismayed at the approach to this election being adopted by the Centre-Left Grassroots Alliance.

For the sake of party democracy and in order to inspire more people to take part in the NEC election, we need more than a list of six people with 200 words statements – we need to conduct a series of discussions about the issues.

Selecting a slate of people and then telling everyone to vote for them because they are socialists – and to not vote for them would split the vote and ‘let in the right’ –  is simply not good enough. This is old fashioned, top-down politics at its worst.

Many Labour members are despondent and some are threatening to leave (or have already left) as a result of the way the party is run.

It is essential that socialist candidates running for the NEC take this opportunity to go out of their way to give hope to disheartened members.

This will involve taking part in many debates and discussions and listening to ideas put forward by members. This can all be done from the comfort of their homes via Zoom.

If we want to save the Labour Party and work on the energy of Corbyn’s leadership, we need to encourage discussion and debate.

Crispin Flintoff, Henley CLP

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8 Comments

  1. In my opinion two of the candidates on the CLGA slate are transphobic. I’d sooner vote for Labour First, even though I am on the left. This slate was fixed with unseemly haste and trans people’s opinions ignored. I am quite disgusted with CLGA

    1. You mean two people on the slate support a civilised debate where women’s rights are heard rather than we are all bullied into accepting that one group trump’s everyone else.

  2. I left Labour when Stamar sacked RLB I now desperately look for a socialist party

  3. This is a utter disgrace. All this needs changing. Labour is supposed to be for the people / working people, so the grassroot members need a much bigger say in the party in all the decision making. The money from the membership should not go to the burecracy it should be used better.
    Re-selection is a must. We really need to get rid of those back stabbing right wingers from the party too.
    Jeremy Corbyn should be reinstated as leader because Starmer is destroying our socialist values. We want what Corbyn was offering and Starmer should be fighting for that. He should be shouting from the roof tops about saving the NHS but he isn’t. Time for us to fight for true socialism. A true Socilist Labour Party. The NEC should have more power than the PLP.

  4. For the last 5 years I fought daily to defend Corbyn against disgusting lies/smears. The leaked report leaves me heartbroken ?- not only was Jeremy fighting the Tories/ elite, he was being attacked internally by LP officials!! Starmer has left me bewildered and disappointed – has he really paid off the bullies, despite knowing LP would have a strong case in Court? Appeasing bullies never ends well.

    But all of us who donated, walked the streets, campaigning for a Corbyn government have just been spat at in the face. Jeremy deserves justice and I’d like to see nothing more than him taking this to the Courts to clear his name.

    I’ve toyed with the idea of leaving the LP. But the LP isn’t the problem, it’s the “Tory plants” in Labour that are ruining it.

    I’ll always stand with Corbyn. If he was to leave the LP, I’d certainly follow him.

  5. I think I may have an idea to save the country from eternal Tory rule!!!!!
    It’s only a tweaking of an old idea, but:
    As the Labour Party seems to be imploding and, as we have (permanently?) lost so many Scottish seats, it seems that the main thing that unites us all – our shared desire to get the Tories out – is becoming an increasingly remote possibility, no matter how sick of them the nation gets! So, why don’t we AMICABLY split and immediately form an overarching group called The Alliance (or something). We could get other parties to join The Alliance such as Lib Dems, Greens, SNP – even independents! They could all join and stand as Lib Dem (Alliance) or Independent (Alliance) etc. We could sort out the technicalities of how we’d create the cabinet etc. later but, obviously, the more votes your party got the more power your party would have in government.
    The current Labour Party, without we annoying “Lefties”, would probably be the biggest party seats wise, which should please them and they could be much more unified without us but the rest of us could be enabling them to actually translate that into power, instead of opposing them, whilst retaining meaningful influence in government ourselves. We, the annoying Lefties, could keep working to build our brand in unity without being constantly sabotaged from within or giving up all hope of influence and so could all the other parties. We could stop relying on fake unity and start creating genuine cooperation. Maybe we might even be able to take some of the traditional union support with us!
    I know that The Tories hold a clear majority now so even as one alliance we would not have been the ones forming a government this time but as the nation becomes sicker and sicker of Tory rule that would surely change. We’d be giving people a real option and yet they would not be having to ever vote against their principles. They could express their preference for Green policies or middle road policies or Scottish independence or Left Wing policies without those conscience votes handing power back to the Tories! We might even get to find out what people really want as we would get rid of the need for tactical voting.

    Just thinking this through a bit further:
    In each constituency, every vote for an Alliance candidate would go towards getting an Alliance MP and that MP would be from the Alliance party that won the most votes but the Alliance candidates who added votes to his/her/their campaign would get some cooperative influence too. I don’t know how that would work but maybe, for example, they don’t get to join parliament directly but they do get regular funding/meeting/ discussion time with the MP and the hours/ money they get would based upon the number of votes they get. The Alliance candidates in each constituency that did not get to be MP could have paid roles at local level. The MP would carry that influence into Parliament for them, better representing the people who voted for each party. ???

    ???

  6. My experience poorly attended ward meetings, repetitive discussions dog poo, what local tories are up to, who and whats going on in local councils etc, aargh I’m grimly hanging on in there.

  7. If I fear truth I want confusion. I would work towards drowning the truth in a sea of lies. Corbyn’s case really does need to be tested properly for all our sakes.
    As for the state of the party: another “Blairite” Labour government would just about see me off! No! No! No! I say.
    Damien Bishop’s vision for the future would neuter the left: the left would become an ineffective lobby within a bourgeois parliament, no more than that. An alliance with the Liberals, et al., is an alliance with pink Tories.
    We actually need a radical, popular, left wing Labour Party.

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