There is no doubt that Owen Smith establishes a politically appealing argument when he states that there should be a second EU referendum. The logic being, possibly before Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is invoked, that the people should have a clear picture of what Brexit involves so they can endorse the governments approach (or oppose that approach).
Clearly, with an estimated 65% of Labour Party supporters having voted to remain in the EU – there is some logic to the Owen Smith argument. His stance could certainly persuade some party members to vote for him in the Labour Party leadership contest.
In comparison, Jeremy Corbyn seems more guarded and content with the Labour Party accepting the outcome of the June 2016 EU referendum – albeit that the ‘Vote Leave’ majority of 52-48% is hardly convincing. Many people have put the reluctance of Jeremy Corbyn to advocate the need for a second referendum as being indicative of his lukewarm support for the EU. Continue reading
The recent decision of the National Executive Committee of the Labour Party to suspend ALL Labour Party branches throughout the UK has extremely serious implications for democracy and the Labour Party.
Many activists within the Labour Party see an expansion of local democracy as a vital ingredient. We want to see an expansion of democracy within the workplace, within local communities. We want to see MEP’s being given more democratic powers. We want to see the decentralisation of planning, decision making, etc. We want to see power decentralised.
The history of the Labour Party is such that Continue reading
Many people have criticised the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Labour Party for their decision to suspend all UK branches of the Labour Party. Indeed, it has frequently been referred to as indicative of a dictatorship that is undermining democracy and human rights (Article 11 of the ECHR – Freedom of Association).
While this NEC suspension of branches prevails, we should be worried about the impact this is having at grass roots level. This freezing of democracy at the grass roots level is extremely worrying since it has the potential of enabling control by ‘Executive Officers’ – some of whom are enjoying the freedom to operate as ‘local dictators’.
For example, in one local Branch Continue reading
We all know that Nicola Sturgeon is the Leader of the Scottish Nationalist Party. However, the SNP also have a Westminster Leader in Angus Robertson MP. Logically, the reason for this is because Nicola leads in the Scottish Parliament and does not have a seat in the Westminster Parliament.
Currently, the Labour Party is facing constitutional chaos Continue reading
Drake Park (1) are a set of outline plans to build homes on land adjacent to Field Common Lane, Walton-On-Thames. Those plans were withdrawn and some amended plans (Drake Park 2) have been submitted.
There is no doubt that the proposals to build 1024 homes on land adjacent to Field Common Lane, Walton-On-Thames, is a significant development (Planning number 2016/2217). Initially, one must have concerns that it is to be built on what can be described as ‘green belt land’. However, it can also be described as a ‘former quarry site’ that does not readily provide public access.
As somebody who lives close by, on Field Common Estate, I do understand the reservations that many people may have. That being said, I also recognise that there is a massive shortage of housing and we need to see more houses being built in order to met that housing need. It is also the case that more house building will help improve the economy of our country. Continue reading
The electoral Boundary Commission review, requested by Elmbridge Borough Council, has resulted in Hersham being split up. Indeed, significant parts of what was Hersham North and Hersham South, have been moved into nearby Esher or Weybridge. We are left with a smaller Hersham Village ward – but the identity and community of Hersham (as we know it now) is effectively being destroyed.
As a pro-European I welcome the formation of a ‘Labour Yes’ campaign group. However, I note that it is being:
“… jointly chaired by Pat Glass, Labour MP for North West Durham, and Phil Wilson, MP for Sedgefield. The group will co-ordinate Labour MPs to speak up in European debates in parliament, make the case in constituencies and reach out to businesses, trade unionists, universities and other organisations who have an interest in Britain’s future position in Europe (Source: The Guardian 14/6/2015) .”
Those limited words are sounding alarm bells in my head. Continue reading
Let’s make a tenants ‘right to buy’ a human right.
The Government seem intent on drafting a British Bill of Rights. Obviously, such a Bill must include freedom of expression, freedom from discrimination etc. Indeed, it seems inevitable that all of the civil rights currently included in the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) can be expected to be included in the British Bill of Rights.
Is the PM trying to ‘hoodwink’ the electorate?
The Prime Minister David Cameron is to “get tough on immigration”. That, at least, is his claim. In reality, net immigration is at 318,000, of which a significant proportion derive from the free movement of EU workers.
The problem for the government is that in order to reach the PM’s promise of lowering immigration to the “tens of thousands”, they may need to somehow limit the number of EU citizens migrating to the UK. To do that, there will need to be a change to the free movement of workers rules that are central to the EU Treaty. Continue reading