19th August 2015
There was a big political story this week. The Labour Party went into internal, self-inflicted meltdown as it clumsily banned an as yet unknown number of pre-registered voters with left wing values.
These people had been energised by Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership campaigning, but now found themselves prevented from having their say and backing their favourite for the job.
But this wasn’t a case of external applicants e.g. tory voters being snubbed at the first hurdle. Many were pre-registered members or affiliates who had previously satisfied all the qualifying requirements. But completely out of the blue, unseen hands were now meddling with internal processes and changing things to their own advantage.
At about 11 am today, I’d been pleased to see an email arrive from Labour, telling me that as a Unite affiliate member, I’d soon be able to vote for a new leader and deputy and all I had to do was follow the link and enter a password in order to vote online.
An hour later that chance was snatched away when I received a cold, officious missive, that seemed to have been spat out by a blue-blooded, people hating apparatchik.
Crestfallen, I opened Twitter and sent the following tweet in order to spread the news. It’s not often I get ‘ahead of the curve’ as a story breaks, but almost immediately there was a head of steam building, as banned individuals made their feelings known up and down the country, and the news was being tweeted and retweeted here, there and everywhere.
CLICK to follow and read the responses:
I was quickly contacted by LBC Radio, The One Show, The Jeremy Vine Show and The Huffington Post, all wanting to talk.
Only one of these approaches actually worked out; the Shelagh Fogarty show on LBC on 20/8/15, and here’s a clip:
Predictably, a few staunch Labour defenders came in on Twitter to accuse me of campaigning against their party. I patiently dealt with their points one by one, explaining that to campaign against Wirral Council’s …
- 9 years of disabled abuse
- theft of £736k from learning disabled people’s bank accounts
- accreditation of care companies connected to serious organised crime
- targetting, bullying, mobbing and forcing out of whistleblower Martin Morton
- failure to sanction the abusers
- pay offs to abusers that have now topped £1 million
- the issuing of gags and clean bills of health to enable them to pick up jobs elsewhere
- …and a multitude of other abuses and failures
…is quite different from getting on an orange box with a megaphone in the middle of Birkenhead and spewing anti-Labour rhetoric.
I’d already been blocked on Twitter some time ago by deputy leadership candidate Tom Watson when I told him in detail about Wirral Council’s learning disabled abuse – but recently, although I remained blocked, he and Ricky Tomlinson had started sending me emails asking me to back him.
I use ‘tags’ to help people navigate this WordPress blog easier and to locate the subjects they’re interested in. So as time has gone on, there is now a growing list of hundreds of tags relating to different subject areas.
After two and a half years of writing this blog, I’m now in a position to give a detailed breakdown of my use of the word “Labour”.
Number of times tagged on blog: 0 (zero)
Conclusions, do’s and don’ts and lessons learned
Don’t waste time reporting 9 years of proven council disabled abuse to a Labour party deputy leadership candidate or to the editor of LabourList (Mark Ferguson). It will only get you blocked on Twitter.
Don’t create a public blog that lists and highlights such cases of abuse and / or corruption. There will be Chinese whispers locally / nationally; these will get you into lumber with the political party behind the abuse, and you may have your democratic voting rights removed
Do ignore it when there is a decade of failure and abuse, corruption, hidden payments and no accountability seen at your local council, because attempts to highlight it may have an adverse impact on you personally
Do be a good boy, stay quiet, place your trust in your politicians, both locally and nationally, and take the sage advice of media and celebrity figures who back them because they’re completely selfless and always have the public’s best interests at heart
Hi Paul what a great pity you could not vote for your preferred candidate & having tried to listen to the broadcast on LBC on the cloud without success either there is a fault or the labour gremlins have got in and blocked it. As you know I am a keen follower of your blog and as such I would love
to hear what you said & why the labour party your vote was blocked & who blocked it.
John, try clicking it again. It’s working. I’ve just listened to the full transmission. Warmest regards.
As a labour party member, and a Jeremy Corbyn supporter, I hope that when he is elected as leader he will be able to win back many of the people alienated by this process. Indeed I hope he will be able to win back many of the voters who felt Labour had lost its way. As a person who listens and a man whose policies seem to reverberate with so many I’m hopeful that he can be a force for positive change and unity. Not much consolation right now, I appreciate.
Me? I’ve got no problem at all in returning to the Labour Party I once knew, voting for them and Corbyn in the next General Election and being cognisant that Labour won’t win power is of no concern to me.
Absolutely no problem at all. In fact, stripped of the window dressing, tempting chewy bites for disillusioned Tories, no make up and no place for the ‘Far Away Eyes’ that bloody Blair and his disciples have shoved down our throats for so bloody long, I look forward to my old party being representative of working people who’ve been let down, lied to and deceived by a form of politics that prostituted the good name of Labour.
As the song goes, ‘just gimmee some truth’. That’s more than good enough for me, and in Mr Corbyn, it’s highly likely and possibly inevitable that we’ll be given the truth without the accompanying tears, sound bites, gimmicks and pointless drivel that’s brought everyone to a place of hope, intolerance to rubbish and a belief that ‘things can only get better’ and there must be something better than Blair and his legacy that’s given us Burnham, Kendall and bloody Mrs Balls.
This link is to an article that might be of interest to people who’ve been denied a vote (and had their £3 stolen).
It seems there are data protection violations in the process the LP are using to chuck people out. The article explains it better than I could (especially this time of night!).
Thank you Glynis. This would be a very good route for people to take. Labour say they have “reason to believe”. They can’t get away with such vague declarations where the Data Protection Act is concerned. So it’s every member / affiliate’s statutory right to ask for the reasons why they are preventing people from exercising their right to vote.
I’ll be going down this route initially. Probably not in time to get my vote back, but it’ll give me an idea about whether I can proceed with court action subsequently and who knows? Maybe I can be compensated for my democratic loss and also have my union subs money returned eventually?
Restating the obvious- there are three prolific bloggers on Wirral and its governance-Paul himself, Jon Brace and the anonymous Lord of Leaky Towers. All produce at great expense to themselves high quality reportage of council affairs, commentary and satire. I repeat for little or none pecuniary reward. Each of them are truly democratic in bringing forward alternative arguments that cut through the “NEWSPEAK” of local politicians and Council managers.
INTERESTING that of these three DEMOCRATIC commentators it is now known that both have effectively been expelled from their parties of political allegiance-Liberal democrat and Labour.
For speaking truths? for engaging in a debate?
As to the third blogger he/she is anonymou and thereby perhaps may participate in any democratic votes for their party should they be a member..
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