The Labour Party Compliance Unit has suspended some members for a range of perceived, real, fantasy and or trumped up allegations. Justice is a long time coming for some still suspended from the party.
Today though it is a Liberal Democrat suspension, subsequent resignation and response and it is one of their peers, Jenny Tonge. On Facebook Ms Tonge writes:
Today I have resigned from the Liberal Democrat Party at more or less the same time as they decided to suspend me!
The timing of the Lib Dem spat may be important.
Sky News reports "Earlier on Thursday afternoon, Jenny Tonge, Richmond Park MP from 1997 to 2005 and now a cross-bench peer, was suspended by the party only hours after protests from MPs over comments made at an event she chaired in Parliament. One speaker apparently compared Israel to Islamic State, and suggested the Jews were blamed for the Holocaust. Within an hour of her suspension, Baroness Tonge announced she was quitting the party."
"I was chairing, I did not make any speeches, I introduced the speakers and in the course of that meeting there was a great rant", she said.
Ms Tonge was not one of the speakers but chair person.
Sky News continues "A few hours before her suspension, Tory MP David Davies complained about the event to the Leader of the Commons, David Lidington, during Business Questions in the Commons. "May we have a debate on the use to which these premises may be put following reports that outrageously a member of the House of Lords presided over an event at which Israel was compared to Islamic State, and the Jews were even blamed for their own genocide?", said Mr Davies.
"Could we discuss this and also whether we should be issuing an apology for these outrageous comments to the Israeli government and the Jewish people."
Dare we ask if all this aggrieved anger is more to do with political advantage and the Richmond Park seat up for grabs?
Other than that dare we comment in McCarthy-style political Britain 2016?
This post is a type of part two following on from Tuesday's "Since when was the word TRAITOR so abusive."
The above letter was received by the person in Tuesday's story; a Labour Party member who was recently suspended from the party for a handful of angry tweets.
Tweets which on the grand scale of abuse would probably be laughed out of court. No swearing, no nastiness and no threats.
For me it is ironic that in so many ways Labour's NEC and General Secretary Iain McNicol are acting on a par with the management of American owned supermarket chain Asda.
How so I hear you say? Well this is how.
When an Asda colleague faced disciplinary action for a silly angry comment on Facebook, with no names but obvious hints that Asda was the target, he was hauled over the coals. As an older man months away from retirement he opted to act with his feet and walked.
That person was and still is my husband.
But among those hauled over the coals for his indiscretion, calling ASDA "shite factory" and the "head man" useless following a crappy night shift, was an older female colleague who dared to LIKE his post.
She in fact was given "counselling" for her sins.
So how is the Labour party different? The answer is that at this time it is not.
People choose to join the Labour Party and pay for the privilege. They do so for many reasons.
They use social media in their own time and what they choose to share and re-share should be down to them.
If they break the law or are truly abusive that is a different matter.
But if party members share another person's social media comment what then?
Will the Labour Party like Asda offer counselling? Will they exclude a member for retweeting?
The following was retweeted by our source and forms part of the suspension process in this case:
ŷStrong stuff that makes your blood boil? Banter that will be a step too far for some? Hilarious? Silliness or what?
Opinion: aged 64 perhaps I am out of touch. Certainly some of those currently suspended from the Labour Party are my age or older.
They have seen life and some. They know first hand real trials and tribulations. They are real adults living in the real world.
Do the Labour Party want to be elected or not? Do they only want to be elected if they have removed Jeremy Corbyn? Do they think they can disrespect and or remove members and those same people will vote for them?
I am increasingly at a loss as to WTF is going on and why.
Do they think this constant "bad news week" will do the party's image any good? Will they say well you should not share it online?
Too that I would have to say "on yer bike."
Tough working-class people do not always swear but some do. Some are better educated than others. We the people are far from "champagne socialists." But as a point of fact many of those in Labour attacking Corbyn as some sort of "champagne socialist" are far from working class.
But it is a convenient tool like allegations of perceived abuse.
In much the same way unnamed sources within the Labour Party feed the right-wing mainstream media negative articles those accused and suspended are finding it increasingly difficult to get information from the NEC and are sharing their stories with people like me.
Letters and documents legally requesting information are arriving with redactions.
What have they to hide? Who is trying to hide?
Let's face it any person can screenshot an angry tweet or comment, send it off to the dreadfully named Compliance Unit of the Labour party and have any person suspended.
Jeremy Corbyn may not do personal but many ordinary people do. We lash out on social media often following provocation.
The above letter received by our source is not the first. As a point of fact that person tells me "they just asked me to appeal. I've already appealed 3 times what do they want? Blood" and perhaps they do; their "pound of flesh" to quote Shakespeare but that is not a politically correct saying these days.
Many things about all of this make me angry.
As yet I am not directly affected but we lefties traditionally care for and about each other.
Seeing the Labour Party act much like Asda chastising employees is more than worrying though. It is a bloody disgrace.
OK now do your worst Mr McNicol.
Free speech ASDA or lack of it - http://www.wherebuttheuk.com/uk-news/free-speech-and-asda-or-the-lack-of-it
In the run up to the Labour leadership election 2016 a series of party members where suspended from the Labour party.
Reasons were at times vague and many people smelled at least on big fat rat.
For most their problems stemmed from activity on social media.
For many it also appeared to be a McCarthy style witchunt with Jeremy Corbyn supporters targeted.
If that was the case were or are Corbyn supporters excessively abusive online? Just where is the line between banter and abusive interaction online?
If you are active online and drop by political forums, especially on Facebook, you may have already experienced abuse of some sort. It could be simple school yard type name calling or something more serious. It could also be by way of a "troll", possibly of the paid kind, and aimed at getting you to respond angrily.
It is then as simple as them copying your response and sending it off to the Labour Party validation team.
Initially this writer and Labour Party member was determined she would not stoop to that level but after too many online friends were removed from the party, perhaps temporarily, but all without due democratic process, it was a case of why not?
I posted a series of reports which featured some high flying abusers in the Labour Party followed up by open letters to the validation team.
Councillor John Ferret was one and he quit Labour recently. Did he jump before he was pushed? Who knows and in his case who cares. He has posted vile stuff on Twitter since Corbyn was first elected September 2015 egged on and supported by some MPs and he continues to do so.
But here is the thing.
A few things about the so-called #LabourPurge2 are worth noting:
One friend today has received details of five comments made on Twitter that used the word traitor.
One was actually during an interaction with Jo Cox who was murdered in June of this year.
But and there is a big BUT.
No expletives were used, no nastiness either, but pure and simple anger in response to a lack of support for party leader Jeremy Corbyn. A party member, an ordinary retired person who responded angrily as Labour Party MPs who opposed and still oppose Corbyn closed ranks.
Traitor was one word some had warned would be off limits.
However such ridiculous infringement of an adult's use of social media would act as a red rag to a bull in many cases.
In truth for some it would become a fight for freedom of expression.
Some of those suspended refused to toe a party line if that meant a curb of freedom of expression and can you blame them?
There was a time the Labour Party would have supported Evelyn Beatrice Hall who wrote the phrase: ""I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it" as an illustration of Voltaire's beliefs. Hall's quotation is often cited to describe the principle of freedom of speech."
Social media at times is anything but social. It sometimes is more like anti-social media but how you choose to spend your free time is up to you as long as you do not break the law.
Since when has the word TRAITOR broken any laws?
I can think of far worse name calling, have seen it and experienced it in fact.
There is always the block button or the police if abuse is actual real abuse not simply silly name calling.
Remember some words hurt as they are close to the truth.
For many Corbyn supporters those who plotted from day one to undermine and then remove him from office are traitors pure and simple. They feel they have been betrayed by those who vowed to support whoever was elected leader. So a natural choice of word is traitor.
As for the Jo Cox comment hindsight is a wonderful thing.
At the time my friend commented to Jo Cox "traitor" no person could have guessed what was to follow - the murder of Jo Cox.
I have my own theories on #LabourPurge2 and I am sure you do too.
Feel free to share your opinions in the comments section but remember the thought police may be watching. When I used that phrase in the Labour Party Forum on Facebook months ago I was ridiculed but hey I am a big girl and can take it. Sadly however it seems that was not such a silly notion after all.
Note: The "traitor" person becomes my third online buddy to quit the Labour Party rather than face a foolish unnecessary investigation. This time though the person's partner is quitting the party too. Four Corbyn supporters gone but at what price? Four decent law abiding individuals who are valuable members of society.
I presume the Labour Party will not want their votes come election time then?
About that word Blairite.
Thursday October 6 Steven Woolfe MEP turned 49. He spent his birthday in the European parliament, in an altercation with another MEP, collapsed on a bridge and then in hospital as it was reported he was in a life-threatening condition.
Friday he appears to be doing OK but there is a lot of damage limitation and spin underway.
The other man involved was initially unnamed but it did not take long for his identity to be revealed. It is the aptly named Mike Hookem MEP from my city Hull.
Mr Hokem, 62, is the party’s defence spokesman and a former Royal Marines Commando. Both men are well built but there is an obvious age difference between them.
The "altercation" has had mixed reporting.
Was it a brawl, a fight, a scuffle or just silliness?
Mike Hookem on Sky News Friday gave his side of the story.
UKIP MEPs called a clear-the-air meeting Thursday to discuss news that Steven Woolfe was considering switching to the Tory Party. Mr Hookem and others are concerned about electing another new party leader who may then jump ship and Mr Woolfe could easily be elected the new UKIP leader.
But as tempers frayed Mr Woolfe allegedly took off his jacket and invited Mr Hookem to take it outside. Hooken denies any punches or slaps happened and describes what happened as an embarrassing scuffle.
Denying any fisticuffs he uses a local phrase instead to describe it as "handbags at dawn" saying Woolfe is building the story up.
But he confirmed he has received an email from Woolfe from his hospital bed and that the two men plan to shake hands and put the incident behind them.
That may not be so easy.
Temporary UKIP party leader Nigel Farage has launched an investigation. If either or both men broke party rules they could be removed from the party.
[Martin Scultz refers incident involving MEP Steven Woolfe to advisory committee.]
How soon would it be before Steven Woolfe joins the Conservatives I wonder if that happens?
Wednesday we reported Nigel Farage is back as UKIP party leader after new leader Diane James jumped ship before her leadership had even been formalised. Farage said he had returned temporarily while the party elected a new leader but Thursday that election is on hold as one of the frontrunners to take over, Steven Woolfe, is seriously ill in hospital after collapsing during an "altercation" at a meeting of the party's MEPs in Strasbourg.
Currently there is a great deal of speculation about the circumstances surrounding Mr Woolfe's collapse and subsequent hospitalisation.
BBC News channel has shared "Brussels correspondent Damian Grammaticus says he hears that Steven Woolfe collapsed this morning inside the European Parliament complex although not in the chamber and he was subsequently taken to hospital in Strasbourg. He also tells the BBC News channel that he hears exchanges inside the party were "heated"."
Was there a fight? There are some reports that Mr Woolfe was punched but nothing initially confirmed.
The lastest news via the Telegraph is " Ukip leadership favourite Steven Woolfe in 'serious condition' after 'being punched by colleague."
That report continues:
According to Sky News, Steven Woolfe was punched once by a colleague before he staggered back and hit his head on metal bar. The two colleagues were both seemingly alright after the fight and went to vote.
One of UKIPs main funders, Aaron Banks, spoke on TV news channels Wednesday and his words highlighted the party has deep divisions
Former Tories Douglas Carswell and Neil Hamilton may have won votes in elections but they are not hugely popular in the party. Nigel Farage is a mixed bag depending who in UKIP is assessing his political career.
Steven Woolfe was excluded from the previous leadership election when the necessary documentation was received late. He blamed problems with the UKIP website for the delay but it prevented him standing.
For many in UKIP he is the natural choice of party leader.
We will update this story as more information is received and for now simply wish Mr Woolfe well and a speedy recovery.
There have been reports his injuries are life-threatening but the diagnosis and prognosis has improved.
When we act in anger we sould never forget that our actions could be life-threatening to another person.
Mr Woolfe was born October 6, 1967, meaning Thursday is his 49th birthday
UKIP TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS
Neil Hamilton did not appear on TV lunchtime news but he was in contact.
He highlighted a party with deep divisions, in-fighting and abuse.
Of course mainstream media has been too pre-occupied reporting on alleged and sometimes imaginary abuse in the Labour Party to notice.
Hamilton did not pull his punches when referring to party donor Aaron Banks or Mr Farage. Both men have links to the Tory Party.
Hamilton 'played to the gallery' describing Labour under Corbyn as some sort of Trotskyist haven.
Check out this Guardian report to refresh your memory about the appalling Mr Hamilton.
The latest on the fight is it was just that. Mr Woolfe and an unnamed MEP took off their jackets and went outside for a scrap. It was reportedly following reports that Woolfe was looking at joining the Tory Party following Theresa May's conference week. However when he learned Ms James had quit as UKIP leader he apparently had a quick change of heart. That led toaccusations that he is simply just another self-indulget and self-centered politician. With his honour in question Woolfe reportedly called the other man out and boom.
The fight ended, the men put their jackets back on, but then a little later Mr Woolfe collapsed.
One thing Neil Hamilton said which was true was such a fight does not make UKIP look good but me I wonder what does.
Op-ed: Tuesday 18 days after being elected as the new party leader of UKIP Diane James quit. Enter that proverbial bad penny, boomerang man or saviour of UKIP Nigel Farage who is once more running that political party though this time he claims it will be temporary and until such time as a new party leader is elected.
UKIP are traditionally a one-man party with on political aim.
The aim to get the UK out of the European Union and the man is Nigel Farage.
UKIP have two MPs, both Tory Party defectors, Douglas Carswell and Neil Hamilton, but Carswell could of course cross the floor of the House of Commons and rejoin his old Conservative pals; I doubt Hamilton could!
When BRexit is complete UKIP will have no meaning or purpose. For many of us they never had either.
Ironically Farage has a political role as an elected MEP that is Member of the European Union parliament.
Still he does not have to worry about finances but that's another story.
When Diane James quit she claimed someone on a train had spit on her since becoming party leader and that she did not have the support of some in her party.
Mouthy Carole Malone doing the press review on Sky News late Tuesday seemed to think the spitting was OK. She was derisory about Ms James in effect saying she should toughen up. How very odd when Ms Malone has been one of those calling Momentum and Jeremy supporters for alleged, sometimes, non-existent, abuse.
But she has quit ahead of her role as leader being formalised so pranksters on social media Tuesday were quick to say Mr Farage has simply had a two-week vacation and is now back at work.
She did win the election by a massive majority so who knows what claims of a lack of support are about.
"The South East England MEP [James} became the first woman to lead the Eurosceptic party on 16 September, following a leadership election caused by Farage stepping down after the EU referendum."
One potential candidate Stephen Woolfe was excluded as he missed the deadline because of “technical problems on the party system” on the day that nominations closed.
His supporters may have been part of the problem.
Political pundits, Bookies and the mainstream media now seem to think Mr Woolfe is favourite to win the next UKIP leader election but will Farage actually leave this time.
He quit after the General election 2015 but quickly returned so perhaps for him and UKIP it will be third time lucky or unlucky depending on your view of Mr Farage.
Op-Ed: As a Labour Party supporter and member I have been trying to avoid the ongoing television coverage of the annual Conservative Party conference. As a blogger I really should tune in but hey I am retired.
So as a political dabbler long-time voters who has watched elected Prime Ministers come and go I thought I would give unelected PM Theresa May's first conference as leader a miss.
There is only so much my blood pressure can stand.
But the odd unavoidable news clip does catch you out at times.
When it and if it does note how half empty conference appears to be a lot of the time.
There will be fringe events which could be divisive but of course the Tory Party that spins itself as some sort of champion of we the "ordinary people" has priced most people out of attending.
The Conservative Party may claim to be everyone's first choice these days but that is just for carefully crafted expensive spin propped up by a drip feed from the mainstream media.
And Wednesday at the Tory Party's love-fest Ms May addressed conference and shared her love of health minister Jeremy Hunt.
Social media responded robustly. Here are just a few Twitter responses;
What!!?? #TheresaMay heaps praise on NHS wrecker #JeremyHunt ….. sooner he resigns the better #ConservativePartyConference
— Ray Mach (@raymach1)
RT SkyNews: .Theresa_May gives credit to Jeremy Hunt, and says Labour does not have a "monopoly on compassion" https://t.co/bViSRjwsvM
— Osmanlı Genci (@OsmanlGencii)
All credibility lost when #TheresaMay praises #JeremyHunt #nhs
— Myar Seitis (@Nowtsabother)
Oh yes, Jeremy Hunt is really popular amongst health workers. Good awareness there #TheresaMay #CPC16 #ConservativePartyConference
— Daniel Morgan (@Bogglemyminds)
Can't believe TM had the nerve to stand there & give credit to Jeremy Hunt!!! Absolutely shocking!!! #CPC16
— Chelle Belle (@Shellybellylou)
How can you praise the NHS and thank Jeremy Hunt at the same time? #CPC16 #TheresaMay
— Fi Fi NiCks (@MissDeeN)
good to know Theresa May just lost the doctor vote by praising Jeremy Hunt #CPC16
— Aster King (@thatasterking)
What does she see in him?
Often proved to be incompetent in his various ministerial roles Hunt appears to be the "Teflon-coated kid."
In February 2016 as Hunt began to wage war against NHS junior Doctors we tool a look at what we called a "career of cock-ups."
According to Wikipedia "Jeremy Richard Streynsham Hunt was born November 1, 1966, and is a British Conservative Party politician, who is the Secretary of State for Health and the Member of Parliament for South West Surrey. He was previously Culture Secretary (2010–12). As Health Secretary, he has been criticised for, amongst other things, his support of homeopathy, dangerous advice on meningitis, and imposing a controversial contract on junior doctors."
I do not want to belittle any profession or job as all require certain skills but I would not Mr Hunt in charge of cleaning my dog's poo on the garden so how come the Tories think he is fit to oversee the running of or valued NHS?
British political scene
The next General Election in the UK may not be scheduled any time soon but the British political landscape is changing. With that in mind this blog will concentrate on the political scene but with a left wing perspective. Opinion pieces and news will bring you the stories that the MSM prefer to ignore.
Running a news based website is fun, time consuming and can be costly. If you would like to help the site keep afloat please use the donate button