Chairman general secretary : Labour mustn’t think it can differentiate itself from the Tories"/>

Former New Labour Chairman general secretary : Labour mustn’t think it can differentiate itself from the Tories

This post was written by Reuben on May 27, 2011
Posted Under: Uncategorized

Peter Watt was General secretary of the Labour party under Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. His recent article at Labour Uncut is pretty revealing about the philosophy of the labour leadership in those years. Looking to the future, he delivers the following warning:

“We must, at all costs, avoid deluding ourselves that we can differentiate ourselves from the Tories. “

Nope this isn’t a typo. He goes on to rehearse the usual, unoriginal line that we can’t just appeal to Guardianistas or Mirror readers. Well of course it can’t. But is it “deluded” to think that labour  can even “differentiate” itself from the Tories. If so, you have wonder what point there is in running for office – other than acquire some ministerial limos for our leadership. If Labour can’t “differentiate” itself from the Tories, why on earth should those of us who actually want to change society care who gets in.

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To contact Reuben email reuben@thethirdestate.net

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Reader Comments

John Reid

The way we still hold onto our issues and not differentiate from the tories is to get the Tories to agree with us on things we feel we were right on, the Minimum wage,independence for setting interest rates by the BoE guv’nor,and get the tories to adit they were wrong in the past on section 28, apartied, selling council houses so cheap without replacing them, under spending on the NHS.
Labour also need to appeal to Mirror and Guardian readers first off ,before they appeal to sun readers, the guardian backed the Liberals and in the 80′s even mirror readers may have not liked thathcher but even they agreed she was right (their views not mine) to take on the unions

#1 
Written By John Reid on May 27th, 2011 @ 7:00 pm
John Reid

The way we still hold onto our issues and not differentiate from the tories is to get the Tories to agree with us on things we feel we were right on, the Minimum wage,independence for setting interest rates by the BoE guv’nor,and get the tories to adit they were wrong in the past on section 28, apartied, selling council houses so cheap without replacing them, under spending on the NHS.
Labour also need to appeal to Mirror and Guardian readers first off ,before they appeal to sun readers, the guardian backed the Liberals and in the 80′s even mirror readers may have not liked thathcher but even they agreed she was right (their views not mine) to take on the unions

#2 
Written By John Reid on May 27th, 2011 @ 7:00 pm

a)Did you write your own headline for this? Since when is a General Secretary a Chairman? Peter Watt became Gen Sec of the LP (not a very good one, as it turned out) through the administration route. This is one often followed by people who are broadly supportive of the LP but who don’t actually ‘do politics’. It is quite different from a Gen Sec position in a typical union. To suggest he was a leading influence on New or any other Labour in political terms is simply wrong.

b) Peter should not be taken seriously. He was fired for incompetence over donations to the LP. It is certainly true that he was dumped pretty unceremoniously after years of service, and hyung out to dry in the papers. No-one deserves that, but the outcome is that he is still – I suspect – going through an understandable (but now longish) period of grief about his loss of importance, and he has ended up writing shite at Labour Uncut alongside others who feel similarly bereaved and betrayed, though (in Hodges and Simon’s case) for more poltical reasons. He therefore writes deliberately provocative, but simply silly, articles to show how distinctive he is.

#3 
Written By Paul on May 28th, 2011 @ 10:06 am

Cheers for the heads up. I wrote this in the hoof and appear to have made something of a boo boo. I didn’t actually know that about gen arcs, but now you sat it, it seems to make sense five what his role entailed. So yes this should have just been a piece about peter watt talking rubbish, invested with a bit less political significance .

And yes labour uncut really is shite. It’s like the iain dale of the left. Same attraction to gossip. Same politics lite. Same politics=railing west Minster attitude.

#4 
Written By Reuben Bard-Rosenberg on May 28th, 2011 @ 1:20 pm

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