Friday, October 20, 2006

Shorty Goodnighty

Clare Short has resigned from the Labour Party!

The most pro-war anti-war MP?The news comes after months of run ins with Labour, particularly after she called for a hung parliament at the next general election. What's not to disagree with there? I was preparing the scaffolds and everything.

Clare's not a bad old stick when everything is said and done. Absolutely loathed in the anti-war movement of course, and spectacularly bad at tactical decision making. Decided to stay in cabinet during the invasion setting her against the anti-war crowd, then resigning over the war once the invasion has happened thus invoking the ire of the establishment. Poor thing lost her friends on both sides of the fence, bless.

Clare Short (whose brother in law is on the Respect national executive) has had a hard life and done some great things over the years which earned her the respect of many on the left, although we should remember she has not always been entirely "helpful" to the left's cause. But it was her behaviour over the war – where many felt she was more interested in holding onto her position as international development secretary than in standing up for her principles (if any) – lost her a great deal of that support.

If we believe that people can atone for their previous mis-deeds, perhaps it's time we gave Short a second chance. What's certain is that she is currently a clear anti-war and left of Labour figure with a very high profile - no matter what she has got upto in the past.

Note: Clare's wikipedia entry is fairly comprehensive


Jim Jay said...

Clare's resignation letter

morbo said...

There's some in the anti-war movement that have been arguing to withdraw all support for labour MPs that voted for the war and are now coming out against it.

It's the wrong strategy, i think.

Jim Jay said...

If I understand you rightly I agree. We can't argue for people to change their minds and then say "no, too late, should have said that three years ago."

My brother was for the war when it was launched and, reasonably quickly, changed his mind - anyone that regarded him as pro-war because of his stance three years ago would be irritating and wrong.

Having said that, in regard to Labour MPs some of these people were opposed to it then and still voted to launch the invasion out of loyalty and an eye to their career (just like Short) - they may well come out against it now but I still don't actually want to HUG them.

Anonymous said...

An absolute disgrace. Check out her 2005 election leaflet here. I would be outraged if I had voted for her at the last election.

morbo said...

Like it or not Labour MPS still represent a section of the working class, because Labour is still a working class party, in respect that many working class people are still in Labour and still vote for Labour, not to extend a hand to these MPs would be.. well stupid, being wary of their career-concerns is also a part of this.

Anonymous said...

That's "hanged".

Jim Jay said...

lol - I know it's hanged not hung

Jim Jay said...

Morbo: of course lots of libdems and tories are working class too - and BNP members. Something has to be more than just "working class" to gain my approval.

Friday night drunken fights and casual anti-asylum seeker ideas are two things lots of working class people indulge in and strangely there is the occasional person on the left who thinks that makes them ok - thankfully they are in the minority.

More working class black people vote democrat than republican - it doesn't make the democrats a party of or for working class black people.

I understand why people who've been commited to the anti-war movement and progressive politics can be dismissive of people who only leave the labour party now - or even stay in it - after everything that's happened. I don't think that's a stupid attitude - but I would say it's unnuanced and therefore mistaken.

morbo said...

Nah should have made myself a little more clear, working class and joined labur because of the ideology of reformism, that's different, and I think you'll agree.

Jim Jay said...