Support Cruddas for leader; hold him to account
May 17, 2010 Leave a comment
My enthusiasm for supporting Cruddas has been stepped since I saw how much a meek and mild audience of fabian society members/supporters thanked and heaped praise on Ed Miliband when he gave his instigative speech there on Saturday 15th May.
Though when I was speaking to people in the pub afterwards the attitude was the same; Ed Miliband because he was the better realistic candidate. Now what happened to the leftist intellectual rigour once felt to be found within the fabian movement, the natural home of socialism in punctuated steps (definitely not eugenics).
Do we leftists have to step over to Compass for a view of the Labour party as anything other than beaten, downtrodden numpties who will take whatever “change” candidate appears first (and often enough, Ed will get good coverage!).
When I was called a “commie” for supporting Cruddas in a popular restaurant after the conference I realised that the fabian rigour of old had perhaps left with Sidney and Beatrice.
Nonetheless, hopeful as ever, I’ve spoken to a few people with Cruddas in mind, and fell across a facebook group with more supporters for him as leader than Ed Balls’ fan page (that is at least something, if a minor something). To campaign for a Cruddas leadership is not a write-off – and I will pursue.
Reminding myself of his work today I watched again the Compass speech, and made particular note of his 10 pointers (bearing in mind they were for an audience that was pre-election).
The important part of that is embedded below, but I’ll point out the main elements he puts forward:
- electoral reform ( a hot potato)
- economic democracy (social banking, miles from the speculative sort to which it is linked at the hip)
- social housing crusade (for those who depend on it so)
- a cancellation of Trident (old hat, hark-back to the cold war)
- scrappage of ID cards
- closure of tax havens
- cancellation of third Heathrow airport
- devolution of power to local authorities (sticking it to those who didn’t think that a Labour party could be capable of something like this)
- fair employment contracts for all (even for those who might otherwise fall through the cracks)
- the protection of those in poverty who would be affected by a future of Tory cuts (little did he know then a Libservative tirade of cuts in the first year of their governance)
He goes into a little more detail than I’m able to in this post, but our representatives are held to account by us, and if he sticks to a programme of the above, then lets see a healthy battle between the choice for hype (Ed Miliband) and the choice for socialism (Jon Cruddas).