Friday, 16 October 2009

Labour can (and will) win the next election

David Cameron has not 'sealed the deal', as they say, with the British electorate. We in the Labour Party have it all to play for. I am personally more optimistic than I have been in the last 18 months about our chances of winning

If you don't believe me, please read this by David Owen (someone who knows a million times more about these things than I do).

We must deconstruct the Tory Party's clever marketing. They are NOT progressives. They are NOT particularly concerned about the poor. They are NOT the party of the NHS.

Here's a brief guide to why: On being progressive - the Conservative party is, as its name suggests, conservative with a small 'c'. Throughout British political history, the Tories have opposed virtually all socially progressive legislation, up to and including the creation of the NHS, the minimum wage, extended paternity and maternity rights but let's not forget their stance on extending the franchise, or health and safety legislation which prevented women and children working in coal mines for 12 hours per day. Ditto their attitude to poverty. And as for the NHS, this is the party which opposed its creation, ran it into the ground in the 1980s and 1990s and would love nothing more than to introduce more private provision. They only profess their love of the NHS because they have to electorally - for the people truly love this institution, because it saves their lives and it is free at the point of use. These are essentially socialist principles. It is little wonder then that the Tories, by instinct, are not truly the saviours of the NHS.

It is rather sad then that our party has performed so woefully recently that the Tories have managed to convince large swathes of the electorate that they are the leopards who changed their spots. They are not.

Thankfully, the Labour Party seems to be getting its act together. We are focusing in on the Tory subterfuge. We are proudly defending our excellent record of progressive government over the last 12 years. We are also setting out our vision for the future rather then resting on the laurels of having taken the right calls during the credit crunch.

We can and we will win next May.

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