Sunday, November 29, 2015

A Tale of Two Parties

Both the Conservative and Labour parties have had problems in the past few weeks.

But what is being done about it is instructive.

Following the suicide of a young activist, it has come out that something had gone very wrong with a Conservative campaigning initiative called "Road Trip 2015"

Nevertheless it is clear that things are being done about it; the  main culprit has been expelled from the party for life, the former party co-chairman who appointed him to an important position has fallen on his sword, the national leadership of the party's youth wing has been suspended.

Both the Conservative party and other political parties would do well to read and think about the points made in an article published at the weekend by Tim Montgomerie here: I don't believe all his criticism of the "Cameroons" are fair but he is absolutely right about how they are perceived by most of the party grassroots and we do indeed need to do more to build a culture in which ordinary members of the party are listened to and seen to be listened to. But at least it seems to me that the party has woken up and stopped ignoring the issue.

Other parties also have serious problems with bullying and also need to think about how they deal with it. And anyone who doubts that it would be far better to have the Conservatives' problems at the moment than those of the Labour party would do well to read Andrew Rawnsley's piece,

There is no obvious escape route for Labour from the party's agonies.

As he puts

 "... the Labour party is making such a first-class job of eviscerating itself."

"In the short history of the Corbyn experiment, the past seven days have been the most spectacularly disastrous yet."

“We can’t go on like this.” That’s the cry now to be heard from all points of the Labour spectrum, left, right and centre.

"Yet it seems most probable that Labour will go on exactly like this. For there is no obvious escape route from the party’s agonies."

"Labour is trapped. Trapped with a leader incapable of commanding the confidence and loyalty of his MPs. Trapped because Labour’s aghast parliamentarians are powerless to do anything about it. Trapped with a leader who can’t win the trust of the public but is strongly protected by the support of his members. This is the Corbyn catch-22. This is the Gordian knot that binds the Labour party. There is no sign yet of someone bearing a sword powerful enough to cut through it."

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