Tuesday, 28 April 2009

James Larkin Jones

Somewhere along the line I missed the tributes to Jack Jones from Gordon Brown,Tony Blair,Peter Mandelson,Jacquie Smith and the rest of New Labour.
Obviously somewhere they have paid their tributes to one of the outstanding leafers of the Labour movement in the 20c.-it's just that I missed their comments.
I expect we may have to wait until fledging Labour MP Georgia Gould casts her formidable political intellect in Jack's direction before we get the definitive NuLabour spin on him.

his name gives his history away- born in Liverpool of Irish socialist parentage, a docker on Merseyside,a fighter with the International Brigades in Spai and the most formidable leader of the TGWU in its history.
The T&G has had some fine leaders,Ron Todd,Bill Morris,Moss Evans-but it has also had some stinkers-Arthur Deakin and Ernest Bevin spring immediately to mind!
But Jack had natural courage-he was wounded on the Ebro-and was a natural leafer.But he never compromised and dspite all the offers of wealth and power he never forgot who he was and what he represented.
There are many in New Labour who would call Jack a 'dinosaur' and desmiss his politics and his values as old fashioned and meaningless in the modern world.
Well if the choice is between a man like Jack Jones and a waste of space like Peter Mandelson or Derek Draper I think I know whose side I'm on!
In the same way that the late Jack Jones always knew whose side he was on.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

"OK Jerk pork-come out with your rice up!-it's a fair cop!"

Can you believe it?Eight of the Met's finest in stab proof vests alongside a small posse of Council officials entered a Caribbean restaurant and ordered it to be closed immediately because ot was operating within 400 yards of a school.
Thats right, because it was operating 'without planning permission 400 yards from a school AND a park the Council instructed that it be closed to prevent primary school children nipping in at lunchtime for a quick dose of cholesterol building jerk pork, rice and peas.
Now apart from the fact that it had been operating for three years unmolested and had only closed for re-furbishment, that it was not in fact a take-away,that it is surrounded by numerous fast food burgeries ,and the school that was being protected is a primary whose children are not allowed out at lunchtime anyway!

Apart from all that,how does it feel to live in a society where it is possible for a hard pressed Police service to be used to enforce a pointless council by-law in such a heavy handed way?

Presumably the logic is that if the youngsters walk say 410 yeard to the nearest MacDonalds they will have burnt off enough calories to justify the exclusion zone , or maube of course the little tubbies will have to run back to avoid being late for school and that way get fit!

An ingenious bit more of useless legislation invented by the well named Minister Balls.

But what is harder to believe that there is a Council anywhere in the UK who can be arsed to try and enforce such a regulation with a council leader prepared to defend this in public.

So step forward Clyde Loakes-leader of Waltham Forest Council and PPC for Northampton South.

I now understand why Loakes spends so little time in town-he has important legislation to implement down south!

Strange to say the school children that he is protecting so assidiously in Leytonstone from the perils of Caribbean jerk pork are the same ones who cluster around the ice-cream vans after school !
But Loakes is obviously a New Labour drone(sorry clone) prepared to do the bidding of any passing Cabinet Minister.
Could that be how he won the postal ballot in Northampton South so convincingly?

Monday, 6 April 2009

Where do you hide a cabinet minister?

In the olden days when the labour party wanted people to notice what it was doing we invited the press to the opening of a matchbox.
In those far off days when I was a parliamentary candidate the visit of any old back bencher was an opportunity for the press to photograph some unknown old codger sitting outside Charles Street with me,an unknown young codger,mugging to camera!
How times have changed.
A couple of weeks Northampton South Labour Party had a visit from a cabinet minister-the iconic Hazel Blears(memorably described by Ann Treneman in The Times as the 'Duracell bunny') visited to town to support the almost newly selected (well about six months ago) invisible PPC.

Strangely the visit went unreported, no press,no photographs,no radio,no TV- just a deafening silence and an empty Hazel sized space where the cabinet minister should have been.
There are a number of explanations:
1.The Party are embarrassed by Hazel-that little packet of dynamite.
2.The party are embarrassed by their PPC-maybe he is especially ugly or wants to keep a low profile.
3.The Party are embarrassed that it couldn't afford to use the Labour Club and had to find a cheaper venue.
4.Northampton South has ticked the no publicity box.

Of course it is just possible that the combination of the eccentric cabinet minister and the monklike candidate is a step too far even for Northampton to contemplate.but it does raise the question- what on earth are they afraid of?

We are told that Haze met with a delegation of Post Office workers who were there to raise the issue of why the government wants to destroy the post Office as a public service and if it is true that the secretive PPC arranged that meeting one might have thought that he would have been pleased to publicise his role.
But maybe he's frightened of Trade Unions too!

One has to aeeume that if barack Obama turned up for ameeting in Northampton then Labour's PPC would turn up with a paper bag on his head.
There again its possible that the local party has been duped and they have selected a hologram-the ultimate New Labour creature!