Op-ed: With the lyrics of The Backstabbers by the O'jays seemingly on a loop running through my brain I can only look on in horror as a series of Labour politicians, past and present, appear to feed the right-wing mainstream media a great deal of drivel and a diet of crap.
It could be that the MSM is in some cases making it up as they go along or selectively taking words and sentences out of context but it certainly does not look that way.
So let's take a brief trip along the anti-Jeremy Corbyn hype to nowhere on offer this week.
Jess Phillips MP
The week began with the fallout from a series of articles featuring Jess Phillips. She opted to attack Corbyn almost from day one when he was elected the party's new leader in September 2015; as the year moved on she vowed she would not stab him in the back but rather in the front if he was damaging the Labour party.
Since that time she has continued to seriously damage Labour's chances of election success; the right-wing press has lapped it up and she has enjoyed her 15 minutes of fame but at the expense of those who voted for Mr Corbyn, voters in general, the Labour party and the man himself.
Her assumption that only, as she calls them, £3 affiliates voted for Corbyn as party leader sends out a negative message, is simply not true and in effect spits on Labour party democracy and unity.
In her defence Phillips is relatively young and perhaps politically naive; she is however ambitious and it is difficult not to conclude that her appeals for more women in Labour's top jobs has at least some self-motivation.
Dan Jarvis MP
Ex-paratrooper Dan Jarvis may have been off your radar before this week but it is doubtful he is now. A series of press reports this week included claims that Mr Jarvis was about to stage a Labour coup, or at least do so some time soon.
On March 4 the Guardian reported "Labour donors flock to Dan Jarvis as he renews speculation of a challenge to Jeremy Corbyn with a warning the party must change to win back the voters."
News that a hedge fund manager who also donated to the Labour party under Ed Miliband's leadership has donated £16,800 to Jarvis will not sit well with many Labour supporters.
Hedge fund managers may not quite be as dirty words as bankers and banking system but it is a close.
One report in the Guardian two days ago said "Backbencher [Jarvis] tipped as Corbyn challenger to call for party to be ‘tough on inequality, tough on the causes of inequality’." That was ahead of a keynote speech by Jarvis. He has reportedly been raising money from other former Labour donors.
One day later, and in the Guardian again, a new report begins "Backbencher touted as potential leadership challenger signals concern over current strategy but also criticises Blair’s tactics" as he allegedly tries to position himself away from Blair's New Labour.
Friday remarks by Ken Livingstone, a supporter of Mr Corbyn, have had an angry response; the Daily Mirror opts for "Ken Livingstone has provoked fury by saying a Labour MP accepting a City donation was like "Jimmy Savile fundraising for a children's group" but it is not difficult to understand that analogy.
Who is actually feeding the MSM all of this drivel is not clear. The above report also claims "Rachel Reeves, the former shadow work and pension’s secretary, could be in line for the shadow chancellor role if Jarvis were to win the leadership" in spite of the fact a new party leader was only elected September 12, 2015.
Neil Kinnock is claimed by many to have been the great Labour party reformer. He failed to gel with the electorate, was demonised in the press and ultimately was party leader but never Prime Minister. He of all people should know about the need for loyalty but he does not.
Three days ago the Independent reported "Former Labour leader Neil Kinnock warns Jeremy Corbyn he cannot lead if his party [meaning Labour MPs] will not back him" but what about the ordinary man and woman on the street, supporters and party members?
Kinnock's wife went into politics and they are joined by their son Stephen these days.
In February we reported "Why are old Labour heavyweights doing Cameron's EU bidding" after five senior politicians posted an open letter on what they see as the benefits of the UK staying in the EU.
One of the men is a former Labour leader Neil Kinnock who is now backing David Cameron’s new EU deal. But when you post such letters you best make sure your house is in order. Thursday an old story relating to Kinnock and his wife is doing the rounds and it will offer voters cold comfort. A news report in Wales Online that dates back to 2009 but was updated in 2013 has this to say";
Neil and Glenys Kinnock came under fire from critics last night as details of their estimated £10m European earnings were calculated by a pressure group.
Friday we have Kinnock junior, Stephen, telling Wales Online "Questions will have to be asked about Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership if Labour fails to hit “ambitious” targets in the May elections."
Kinnock senior, Neil, was leader of the Labour party from 1983-1992.
So how come he was given nine years with poor election results and Corbyn has to shine in eight months and against a backdrop of deceit, backstabbing and undermining?
Like so many Labour backstabbers Kinnock junior's news report came by way of the Huffington Post and a podcast.
"Describing how Mr Corbyn would “get judged” on the results, he said: “The big question is when people look at him do they see somebody that could be the next Prime Minister of the United Kingdom? And I think we will know a large part of the answer to that question following the elections on May 5, and also based on how the Labour party carries itself now through to June 23 and the referendum. “And you know, Jeremy, as any leader, gets judged on performance, gets judged on results.” Unlike your father is the only appropriate reaction to that I guess.
Open letters are not ideal but when you have well-paid Labour MPs constantly spouting negativity in the MSM such a letter adds a little balance.
Do those regrouping and jockeying for position, including people like Jarvis who not so long ago did not want to stand as party leader, have the best interest of Labour and the electorate at heart or are they shoring up their political careers?
We can include Peter Mandelson, Tony Blair, and a few others in that group.
Because essentially politicians also have a vision of how they see the future and it is not always a selfless vision.
[Stephen Kinnock MP is married to Helle Thorning-Schmidt, who is the prime minister of Denmark]
Op-ed: International Women’s Day is a worldwide event that has been observed since the early 1900s and is now recognised each year on March 8.
Equality of the sexes is still a mixed bag and if you look at many countries is non-existent.
This year's theme is Pledge For Parity and you can check it out and 'sign the pledge' by following this link.
Until fairly recently this day had pretty much passed this writer by. That was for a range of reasons not least because she was busy getting on with life and all the trials and tribulations that can bring. Before you say 'ah that shows she is a downtrodden woman' think again.
When I read a piece for Progress Online, one faction of the Labour party, and one for the Huff Post written by Jess Phillips MP, a response is needed.
Why you may ask and I will explain.
Ms Phillips has been busying herself writing damning pieces about the Labour party's chances of election success in 2020. She claims to use the negativity she hears campaigning on the doorstep to criticise the party and its leader Jeremy Corbyn.
However MPs are part of the fight to win hearts, minds and votes and feeding the MSM a constant stream of negativity and me, me, me news is not productive or necessary.
If Ms Phillips is not kept busy enough as a working MP perhaps she could write more supportive articles; so many within Labour who oppose Jeremy Corbyn cite his opposition to various PMs down the years and with more than a ring of the schoolyard claim 'he did it'. But Corbyn was always a man of principles and his record is not bad to say the least.
Monday as MSM reports concentrated on a possible upcoming coup within the Labour Party Phillips petty weekend articles in the same MSM looked like an additional knife in his back to most of us. Mr Corbyn addressed the parliamentary Labour party, PLP, later Monday calling for dissident MPs to end the ‘back-biting and public attacks’.
But Ms Phillips is tweeting Tuesday her International Women's Day article in the Huffington Post UK so surely she has taken note.
Well actually no she has not.
In one tweet Tuesday to promote the article she tweeted "For people who want to read about unity in the Labour Party here you go" which is yet more sniping.
She ends the first paragraph of her report with the sentence "There is one thing I think that we women have that our brothers should envy and replicate - we have each other." But when I sent her a tweet after being appalled at her divisive articles appearing constantly online she promptly blocked me and I reciprocated.
I had read her article and picked up on common ground between us and tweeted accordingly. She writes "My mom died when I was in my twenties. There is no one, nor will there ever be anyone, who inspires me as much."
I tweeted I was not her sister but that I had lost my dad when I was 17 and Mum when I was aged 23 but I was blocked.
She may decide to class me as a troll as I disagree with her and that is up to her. But if you read her tweets today as she blathers on about women and International Women’s Day bear in mind she is apparently a hypocrite.
I choose not to share my personal childhood details other than to say it was tough at times living in a two-up two-down with no bathroom and an outside loo, playing on bombsites and with a Dad suffering unrecognised PTSD treat as a nut case but life was and is tough for many to this day. It was just as tough for my brother although the challenges were probably different.
There is a time for being a professional and there is a time for chatting as friends and to my mind "My mates are wet-your-knickers hilarious" is an inappropriate line in a Labour MPS online writing.
She has to decide if she is one of the gals or an MP just like a boss has to sometimes step away from former colleagues.
And in her International Women’s Day post the snide remarks are there if you want to see them. "Yes we still don't have hardly any of the top jobs and get paid less" is her comment on the Labour Party and parliament.
She has been an elected MP for less than one year. Two senior female MPs refused to work in Corbyn's cabinet.
Unlike Phillips I do not see all women as great for politics. I use Maggie Thatcher as a shining example of what can go wrong. The same is true of male politicians. We are all after all members of the human race and people.
Barbara Castle who features in Made In Dagenham, a movie about women working in the car industry and fighting for basic rights, was a very different kettle of fish.
I could of course go on and on but hopefully the point is made.
Now I am not sure about Phillips but this writer has some reports in the offing attacking the Tories and I need to get on with them.
Courtesy of the Huff Post again:
MPs will get a taste of their own medicine on Tuesday when a group of sixth form girls will take over the seats on the Commons women and equalities committee.
Me I just wonder who the ones taking part are?
[I am still awaiting a reply to an email sent to Phillips earlier this week]
[I did not vote for Mr Corbyn for party leader and like all campaigning for their chosen candidate opted to tweet all sorts ahead of the leadership election-now we have a leader my loyalty is a given]
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