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Showing posts with label John McAllion. Show all posts
Showing posts with label John McAllion. Show all posts

Friday, 27 May 2011

My message to John McAllion (Where Now for Scottish Labour?) on Bella Caledonia

John McAllion - Where Now for Scottish Labour

I was a committed Labour voter for 50 years, John - Glasgow east end, bred-in-the-bone Labour. The core values we held were an internationalist outlook - the global brotherhood of humanity - concern for the poorest and most vulnerable in society, a profound distaste for militarism, rank and privilege and undemocratic institutions, and Aneurin notwithstanding, an anti-nuclear stance.

I watched Labour abandon everyone of these core values over half a century, culminating in the horror of Iraq. And I came to see that what was rotten in the state of Labour was what was rotten in the state of the UK.

You used the phrase "the Labour Party itself has never been fully at ease with the devolution of political power away from its spiritual home in the Palace of Westminster". I would take issue only with the term spiritual home - there was nothing spiritual about it - it was a cynical obsession with the Westminster village as the pinnacle of its power base, with Scotland as the taken-for-granted underpinning of that power base.

Scottish Labour is irretrievably lost, together with its values, its humanity and its Scottishness. I know the visceral shift that has taken place among my friends and colleagues, old and new, ranging from the solid gold Glasgow working class to the professional and managerial classes. That shift involved real pain, the residual feeling of a betrayal of old, albeit misplaced loyalties. These people will never return to Labour, anymore than the brutally dispossessed ordinary people of Dalmarnock will ever return to the party of their oppressor, Glasgow Labour-controlled council.

I will never return to Labour. You should make the quantum leap, John - it's not a dyke but a giant leap across an intimidating chasm, but you can do it. You must do it.