Blairites should save the British public some time and pick a new Labour leader for us

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Saturday 25 February 2017 15:24
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David Miliband has been vocal about Labour’s chances at the next election
David Miliband has been vocal about Labour’s chances at the next election

It would seem that Jeremy Corbyn is grievously, but not yet mortally wounded.

Can I ask that the dissidents in the party who have been so destructive – and I include of course Peter Mandleson, who has just once again demonstrated his exquisite timing, David Miliband (not bitter at all) and Tony Blair (of spotless reputation) – now get together with all their many friends in the media, and think of the wider British public.

Bearing that in mind, when they have finally got rid of Corbyn, could they save us all a lot of trouble and distress and between them choose the candidate they favour and thereby spare us the spectacle of yet another Labour leader being savaged on a daily basis? We, the public, dimwits that we are (well those of us that like Jeremy Corbyn, that is) could then settle down to a period of calm, which would be much appreciated.

Obviously their choice will be a Blairite one, but we must accept they know best and live with it.

Penny Little
Great Haseley

Theresa May’s Britain does not work for everyone

Theresa May has the audacity to claim that the Tory victory in Copeland demonstrates that her Government is “working for everyone” and for “every part of the country”. Were that reasoning sound, she should also be declaring that the Tory defeat in Stoke Central demonstrates that her Government is NOT working for everyone everywhere.

Of course, the reasoning is unsound. The way to tell whether May’s Government is working for everyone is to look at the millions receiving inadequate social care; the hundreds of thousands living in officially deemed “inadequate” rentals; the thousands homeless, sleeping on the streets; the hundreds of thousands on zero hour contracts barely scraping a living; the disabled scared of their benefit cuts; the suicides in prisons and prison riots; the NHS failing to meet its targets; the cuts in education. I could go on.

If May really believes that her Government is working for all, I challenge her to visit some of the squalid housing, or to sleep on the streets, or meet the disabled suffering benefit cuts. Would she then have the affront to say to these people, “We’re working for you; it’s working for you”? Of course, maybe she would.

Peter Cave
London, W1

Jeremy Corbyn should do the right thing and resign

What politician am I talking about? Self-righteous narcissist who never admits he’s wrong, gets angry with the media if asked difficult questions, is delusional, surrounded by sycophants. Ignores the everyday needs of ordinary people to pursue agenda that are unachievable and unacceptable to the majority of people. Waffles when asked for his policy stances. Accepts no responsibility for obvious errors.

Donald Trump? No… Jeremy Corbyn. From a life-long Labour voter.

Glyn Scott
Barry

In reference to Tom Peck’s analysis of Jeremy Corbyn: wonderful writing. Should be required reading for anyone who cares about the country and worries that the Tories are set to govern for a generation.

The only hope for the Labour Party is to get back to the centre ground and at the same time oppose Brexit. We need a proper opposition who actually oppose the Government and offer credible alternative policies.

Labour cannot do that with a leader who will quite obviously never win a general election.

If Corbyn and his supporters really care about the country they will do the decent thing and allow him to resign. Otherwise, they should understand that they will be as much to blame for May’s destruction of the UK as she is.

Alan Murphy
Nottingham

Sadiq Khan’s comments on Scottish nationalism are offensive

I cannot say how sorry I was to read of Sadiq Kahn’s comments on Scottish nationalism.

Mainly because I believed him to be someone with political savvy and intelligence. In short – someone the Labour Party desperately needs as it follows Corbyn down the rabbit hole.

All I can offer in response to his ill-informed, misguided comments about Scottish nationalism is this. I am a mixed-race grandmother who – for reasons some will regard as obvious – does not have a nationalist bone in my body. I was also a long-time Labour voter, supporter and even city councillor.

I voted SNP when I moved to Scotland. I will vote SNP again. I voted this way because the SNP are clearly and loudly and consistently saying what Labour should be saying. If, as an extra, Nicola Sturgeon finds a way to get this haven out from under the toxic dump which is Westminster and salvage something for the small population up here from the carnage of Brexit – that will be a bonus.

Amanda Baker
Edinburgh

Don’t write off Ukip just yet

I believe it would be foolish to write off Ukip despite the results in the Stoke Central and Copeland by-elections. The contrasts between these two by-elections are instructive.

In Copeland, a constituency heavily dependent on the nuclear power industry for employment, the Conservatives were able to capitalise on Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s hostility to that industry. This gave them a local issue that really resonated with voters. In contrast, in Stoke – despite much hard work by a great many Ukip activists – no local issue caught fire with the electorate.

A further contrast is that in Copeland there was a clear challenger to the incumbent Labour Party, but in Stoke Ukip and the Tories were running neck and neck in the last general election, hence there was little motivation for people to lend their votes to a particular party to defeat Labour.

A third, and I believe crucial, factor is that in Stoke Central constituency Ukip had no local councillors.

In the future, where at least two of these three ingredients come together, Ukip being a clear challenger, the party having local councillors in the constituency and inspiring local issues, I believe that Ukip can and will win Westminster by-elections.

Otto Inglis
Edinburgh

Wage increases would attract more workers

In a capitalist society there is a simple answer. Wages must increase to attract workers from the UK.

Of course this imposes an inflationary increase in prices as companies seek to claw back the higher wage costs, but this is supply and demand in operation and balance will be restored, unless it is possible to import goods from abroad at a cheaper cost than hiking wage rates for those UK workers.

I am therefore expecting to pay more for my morning coffee very soon!

David Maull
Address supplied

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