2017

Book Review: The Secret Twenties – British Intelligence, the Russians and the Jazz Age

Recent polls have shown that 50% of Americans believe that the ‘Deep State’ exists, while in the UK, 55% of Labour members now agree with the claim that MI5 are working to undermine Jeremy Corbyn. Yet fear of being undermined by the 'Hidden Hand' has its roots in the 1920s, as Timothy Phillips discovers in… Continue reading Book Review: The Secret Twenties – British Intelligence, the Russians and the Jazz Age

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2017

The Original Project Fear: If You Want A N***** For A Neighbour, Vote Labour

Smethwick. 1964. The original 'Project Fear' campaign, inspired the most evocative election slogan in British political history.  It saw an insurgent right-wing exploit local anger towards a 'swarm' of migrants -  who were blamed for adding pressure to a severe housing crisis. It pitched an out of touch liberal elite, accused of facilitating a race to the bottom, against a… Continue reading The Original Project Fear: If You Want A N***** For A Neighbour, Vote Labour

2017

Election? What Election? How Brown’s dithering ended the New Labour era

The party insiders urged him to call it. David Cameron challenged him to it. Gordon Brown tried to play politics with it for a short term gain. Eventually the hesitancy destroyed a carefully crafted reputation, and Labour have looked like the opposition ever since. So why didn’t Brown call that General Election of 2007? As Gordon… Continue reading Election? What Election? How Brown’s dithering ended the New Labour era

2017 · Neil Kinnock · Tony Benn

Kinnock, Militant and ‘The Speech of his Life’

It was the speech that put Labour back on the long and often rocky road to government, but why did Neil Kinnock feel the need to take on the Militant Tendency back in 1985? The Road to Bournemouth The development of Militant as a political force is traced back to 1964, with the founding of the… Continue reading Kinnock, Militant and ‘The Speech of his Life’

2017 · Denis Healey · Tony Benn

Two Tribes: Healey, Benn and The Battle For the Soul of the Labour Party

The 1981 Deputy Leadership battle between Denis Healey and Tony Benn has been described as the most important contest in Labour’s history. For the right of the party, it represented a battle for Labour’s soul, an election to determine the direction, perhaps even the salvageability, of the Party as a competitive political force. For the… Continue reading Two Tribes: Healey, Benn and The Battle For the Soul of the Labour Party

2017

Labour’s Top 40 Conference Moments: Everything you always wanted to know but…

Conference can make or break a party leader and has been the scene of some of the most extraordinary moments in the Labour's history. Here is a rundown of the 40 most important conferences since 1900.  This weekend, the party faithful will head down to Brighton for the annual Labour conference. We can trace its… Continue reading Labour’s Top 40 Conference Moments: Everything you always wanted to know but…

2017

Book review: Things Can Only Get Worse? Twenty Confusing Years in the Life of a Labour Supporter by John O’Farrell

The sequel to 1998’s bestselling Things Can Only Get Better takes us through a crazy twenty years with the decline of New Labour through to Corbyn, Brexit and Trump. When Things Can Only Get Better was released in 1998, it propelled its author John O’Farrell into the world of minor political celebrity. In 2010, The… Continue reading Book review: Things Can Only Get Worse? Twenty Confusing Years in the Life of a Labour Supporter by John O’Farrell