Brexit and nostalgia: a narrative for social democrats?

The return of blue passports, or the royal yacht Brtiannia; gunboats being sent to Gibraltar; the return of imperial measures – it’s not difficult to see the world of Brexit Britain as a sort of contemporary version of Passport to Pimlico, with the symbolism of empire once again dominating Britain’s political discourse.  And it is […]

A vote for Owen Smith is a vote for democratic socialism

With the ballot papers about to be despatched in Labour’s increasingly testy leadership election, it’s a good time to take stock of the debate so far, and to summarise what we’ve learned from a contest that has tended to generate more heat than light. The most important thing is that this is a historic contest.  […]

Voting with their feet: Labour’s economic advisers desert Corbyn

What is happening to the team of economic advisers that Labour established after Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership election win last year?  The answer is that many members of that team are increasingly dissatisfied with the Labour leadership’s response to their work and in some cases are now backing Owen Smith in the present leadership election. It’s […]

Why I’m voting Owen Smith for Labour leader

A year ago, I cast my vote in the Labour Party leadership election for Jeremy Corbyn.  I felt strongly at the time that this was the only vote that would wean Labour’s leadership off its taste for austerity economics, with all his opponents implicitly accepting the framing behind it.  I’d been appalled when Labour failed […]

For the sake of the Left, Corbyn must go

Like hundreds of thousands of Labour members and supporters, I voted for Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader a year ago.  I voted for Corbyn because I believed that he was the only candidate who would be willing to break out of the reactive, negative politics of his opponents and set out a real economic and […]

A vote for soft fascism

Yesterday’s vote to leave the EU is a leap into the unknown. It’s becoming increasingly obvious that the winning side hasn’t a clue what happens next.  No exit strategy, no negotiating brief.  Only a vague perception that “we have taken our country back”, and a lot of noise and fury about immigration;  a vote distinguished […]

Joining the dots? Labour’s State of the Economy conference

Yesterday in London, the Labour Party held its State of the Economy conference, in which more than 700 Labour members came together for debate on the Party’s economic policy for the next election and beyond. It’s remarkable that this event should have happened at all.  Economic policy has long been untouchable, forged by the professional […]