Friday, 23 May 2008

A visit to the house of wounded feeling....

. As you might well expect the Labour Home site is not exactly in celebratory mood today. Let's pay a visit to the house of wounded feeling.

Mike Ion is the lucky person who gets to answer the question 'Where do we go from here?' He feels that the "the real challenge to the continuation of the pursuit of a progressive political agenda" is not a "a resurgent Tory party" but "defeatists, pessimists and cynics that exist within the Labour party itself." He calls for Labour to 'renew itself' and it's message but doesn't offer any concrete way to do this than to stop talking about Labour's 'achievements'. So, there isn't really any suggestion that he may think that the voters don't really like the messages Labour does deliver anymore which after the crass tactics in Crewe is naive to say the least.

In comments, Group 51 recognises the above;

"It's not just policy coherence and focus that's missing. It's politics."

Although there is one call for "more style as well as substance" the main complaints are about the political content of the Labour message. Trussman 5 puts it like this;

"Labour has become disconnected with the ordinary Joe Bloggs, it has become reactive instead of visionary and the cabinet is stale and filled with the same people as in the Blair administration give or take a few. "

Interestingly, in the same post he seems to be sharing a delusion of Tamsin Dunwoody's that the problem in Crewe was the fact that Labour's 'core vote' didn't turn out when they quite clearly did - they just didn't vote Labour. Last night and the night after the local elections saw government ministers and some Labour supporters spinning the same story, that people were kicking the government because they were concerned about their finances but that essentially nothing else is wrong. This is a dangerous delusion for Labour and shows that ultimately they expect an economic recovery to ride to their rescue. The aptly names Angry Voter recognises this is a problem;

"a 17% swing does not necessarily equate to a singular issue such as the economy, instead it seems to be a large myriad of issues."

Contributors calling for a leadership change were not as numerous as you might expect andycharlwood argued;

"now is not the time to panic and change the leadership. The great benefit of changing leader is that it makes people feel like they have had a change, so they don't need to vote Tory to make change happen. If we change leader this year, the honeymoon period with the electorate that any new leader will enjoy will have come to an end by the time of the next general election. We need to be patient and avoid panic."

The site also gives us graphic evidence of just how disenchanted the Labour 'core vote' is. Jannottingham describes herself as a "lifelong Labour supporter" whose grandfather died in a mining accident and whose grandmother told her that "without the the support of the local labour party who helped her she would have had nothing." However, the "description my grandmother knew of the Labour Party is no longer there", she feels it has "stopped listening".

All-in-all a visit to Labour Home increases the feeling that the party is adrift with little hope of finding direction.


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