Thursday, 5 September 2013

Nobody talks about Falkirk any more...

It would appear that the Labour Party has fallen out of love with the crime of the century that was the Unite ballot rigging in Falkirk.
remember only a few short weeks ago at the nadir of Ed Mililband's fortunes when they discovered the magic ingredient to improve his poll ratings.
A scandal involving a big bullying trade union and what appeared to be the 'old' machine politics of a bygone age.
Brave Ed took on the union bullies, the constituency was suspended,two members were suspended,the polis were called in and Ed announced with much trumpeting and chest beating that the old relationship was finished and that from now on the Labour Party would have a different relationship with the Trade Unions, and no longer could the unions affiliate and give the party huge wedges of dosh .
Every trade union member had to be a paid up union member.
Hurrah for Ed, the Kinnock of our age!No more nasty union barons,no more nasty lefties,a wholly clean and transparent party funded by loyal rank and file and the odd Lord Sainsbury.

But then falkirk has gone quiet.The Police quite wisely slung out any idea of a prosecution,indeed under different circumstances the complainants might have been done for wasting police time.
Worse than that, the secret report that has remained secret and largely unreported did reveal that the only offence committed by members being signed up without their knowledge was done in a pub by a member totally unconnected to Unite.
A slightly less fulsome hurrah!
So whilst I expect the suspended members are still suspended,unlike our own dear Lee Barron who has quietly been unsuspended in Northampton after the bollocks over the PCC election, and it would appear Falkirk is yet another word never used in polite labour circles.

But the fall out is just starting.Yesterday it was reported that the once traditionally loyal GMB Union (for whom the fragrant Sally Keeble once worked with she was a journeyman arriveiste ) has announced that from January it will reduce its membership affiliation by over a million pounds.
And remember the GMB, the third largest union has always been the most loyal of loyal unions !
Of course the usual apologists were all over the airwaves:
"Not a problem,most of our Party's income is from individual members..." and "it's all that Paul Kenny's fault,how dare he hold the party to ransom..."

Well if the party is relying on the members widow's mites it may have a bit of a problem,especially as membership is in decline-wonder how many members are left in Northampton?Where once there was two CLP's there now appears to be only one.How many active wards are there?How many TU affiliates?
And secondly Paul Kenny was only reporting the decision of his national Executive.He,unlike Ed Miliband cannot simply make a decision on the hoof and have it rubber stamped afterwards!

If the GMB have decided to make a bolt for the exit,largely one suspects to protect their political fund when the registration of political levy fund contributors is balloted next year.They would rather pay for broad campaigns to support their members than pay for a bunch of MP's.
What other unions will decide that the Labour party is no longer fit for purpose?
Will the void be filled by a hefty donation from that great advocate of transparency-Bro. Blair?

I thought not.
I wonder if the Labour party,regionally or nationally will examine the frantic recruiting going on by a local parliamentary wannabe in Northampton South?
It's likely that there will be a low poll for the candidate and there will be a high postal vote, and the candidate most of the local activists left really don't want under any circumstances will win the nomination.

Her adoption will bring a big smile to David Macintosh's face.