Thursday, May 27, 2010

Two Eds no better than one

Word reaches your humble blogger of confusion at the very top of our Union where the word appears to have gone out to back Ed for Labour Leader.

But which one? Should it be Ed Miliband, author of the manifesto on which Labour just lost an election, who did so much to reach out to the environmental lobby by backing nuclear power?

Or should we be commending to our members Ed Balls, who last year removed the requirement for sponsors of Academy schools to put up any cash at all (http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/pns/DisplayPN.cgi?pn_id=2009_0158)? Bearing in mind that Unison rightly supports the Anti-Academies Alliance our members might respond to such a recommendation simply by repeating the candidate's surname...

It doesn't matter. Neither Ed can offer the change necessary to rebuild Labour - both offer continuity with the policies of a Government that failed to do just that.

With the senior leadership of our Union united in their support for a "steady as she goes" candidate for General Secretary, committed to maintaining the status quo for a full five year term (albeit with a few more senior appointments) it ought not to come as a shock that a similar, complacent, view is being taken in relation to the Labour Party.

Yet somehow I am always disappointed when I realise once more that the prospect of Unison pursuing the progressive politics reflected in our own policies in relation to the Labour Party is negligible. We could have done the Party so much good in the past had we been more willing really to take on its leadership. I struggle to believe that we might continue to refuse to do so - and am reminded why I voted for Paul Holmes for General Secretary!

Will a majority of the National Labour Link Committee do as they are likely to be told and back one of the Brownite candidates so they can be as successful a Leader for Labour as their former mentor?

Regular readers Sid and Doris Mabledon-Tank will guess the answer to this question, but will have discounted this blog post on the basis of my foolish and old fashioned belief that we should be recommending support in the Labour Leadership election for a candidate who has consistently supported our members and our policies (http://www.johnmcdonnell.org.uk/).


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