Saturday 26th March 2011 marked a watershed point for the modern Labour
Party. The Trade Union Congress had called for workers, students,
pensioners and all those affected by the coalition cuts to converge on
the capital. The question was: would Labour show up to the party too?
Around 350 Labour Party members, trade unionists and socialists
attended the 2011 LRC (Labour Representation Committee) “Resist the
Cuts, Rebuild the Party” conference at Conway Hall in London on January
15th. LRC Conference tends to major on the big events of the day. Two
years ago it was the economic crash and last year the general election.
This year the conference was not surprisingly dominated by the threat of
cuts and the need to defeat them.
The depth and the scale of the damage that
the Tories and Liberal Democrats intend to impose on the public sector
become more apparent on the 20th October when the results of
Comprehensive Spending Review will be announced. Already the summer
budget has highlighted
the threat of between 25% and 40% cuts across government departments.
Against all the odds and against the wishes of the whole establishment from The Economist to The Sunday Times, Ed Miliband has emerged as Labour Party leader, simply by standing a little to the left of his brother. This clinched the trade union members vote, which shows in which direction workers want the party to go, clearly to the left. But which way will Ed Miliband go?
Socialist Appeal Editorial: The Labour leadership election contest will
be ending in September as the ballot papers finally go out. It could
have been an opportunity to discuss a balance-sheet of the right-wing
control of the party under New Labour and an opportunity to discuss a
socialist programme in face of the worst capitalist crisis since the
1930s. However, the contest has left most people cold.