On this edition of Monday Matters broadcast on 106.9 SFM.
On the day that former Prime Minister David Cameron announced that he was quitting as an MP – we will hear what he has to say and the reasons why. We will also hear Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn’s reaction to the news.
The featured artist is Barry White celebrates his birthday on Sep 12, 1944. Jason plays 4 songs including taking requests from listeners.
The Palace of Westminster is due for a critical £7bn refurbishment. Darren McCaffrey went to the house to find out more.
Litter currently costs Britain £1bn per year and Jason’s guest tonight has set up a smart phone app which lets users report sights of litter directly to their council to clear it up. Danny Lucas developed the Littergram app over a year ago and as well as chatting about how it works – we also hear how Facebook is trying to force Littergram to change its name.
On the 12 Sept 2003 Johnny Cash died and we have music & interviews from his life.
The one person who came out strongly for Labour’s EU Remain campaign – and Corbyn sacks him? Everything about Corbyn stinks. He demands loyalty – yet never showed any himself.
Jeremy claims a majority mandate – yet can’t persuade Labour people to vote for him. He blames the media for not getting his message across – yet when you read them they are muddled and confused! He claims to be a conviction MP yet can’t even provide a convincing narrative to defend himself when challenged to account for his actions by members of the public. #labour is not working under Jeremy Corbyn.
When you see Jeremy being interviewed, rather than being friendly and a man if the people – he comes across as sticky and irritable. Even a Corbyn friend feature by Vice news showed how Corbyn cannot stand when things go wrong – but won’t take responsibility when it does. He blames anyone but himself.
His days are numbered and if Labour don’t dump this disaster – the voters will, come the next election. Can we get our Labour Party back?
Words cannot express the pain and anger that many British people feel at the killing of a UK MP, in broad daylight, on 16 June 2016, on the streets of the small Yorkshire village of Birstall; death snatching the life of one of our most promising Member of Parliament – Jo Cox.
So far all we know is that her attacker was in his 50s, described as a loner who may have mental health issues – but on the latter point we still do not know.
It says a lot about our view of parliament and our politicians that few people outside of her constituency or parliament would have been aware of just how promising and respected Jo was. She was only in parliament for 18 months – yet managed to punch through not only on political issues but also across the political divide. Unlike some politicians who would argue over the direction of a worm – just because they couldn’t bear to agree, Jo was different and would work with anyone of whatever persuasion if they shared her views on the various humanitarian causes she championed.
But let’s be clear – Jo wasn’t just an MP – she was a daughter, a wife and mother of two children whom she loved more than anything. In an emotional yet considered response, after his wife was pronounced dead – Jo’s husband Brendan said: “Today is the beginning of a new chapter in our lives. More difficult, more painful, less joyful, less full of love. I and Jo’s friends and family are going to work every moment of our lives to love and nurture our kids and to fight against the hate that killed Jo”.
We still do not know the cause – however, speaking at the scene of her death the leader of the labour party Jeremy Corbyn alluded to a possible answer when he said “She was taken from us in an act of hatred, in a vile act that has killed her. It’s an attack on democracy, what happened yesterday. It’s the well of hatred that killed her “. One assumes that the Prime Minister has been given constant updates by those holding the killer and may have passed on some information to Mr Corbyn.
If you want to know who Jo was and the type of platform that she was forging her way on – just listen to her maiden speech in the House of Commons in 2015.
I was on facebook when the news of Jo’s shooting started to break – responding to someone who had written a post on the EU referendum and how they only way to regain our country and stop immigration was to vote to leave. My critical response to this including lamenting the idea that it is the EU that makes us undemocratic – when we have nearly 900 unelected Peers in the House of Lords with the power to change, delay and black legislation and whom cost the taxpayer about £21 million per year and that we should sort out the deckchairs on our own beach before looking over the water and blaming a messy beach abroad for our troubles.
I also touched on how the focus on immigration and EU bureaucrats let our own MPs and parliament off the hook – and was pretty scathing about our MPs. Then as news started to roll in that not only had Jo been shot, but had succumbed to her injuries, I decided I could not hit the reply button. It just didn’t feel right to be having a go at politicians when one had just been murdered on a British street in a small British village. Maybe me and the British public have been too harsh on our MPs – the majority of whom, are not that different to us and who come within the communities we ourselves live.
I saved a copy of what I have written and I’m now not sure if I will ever respond to Mr Angry about Immigration – because, actually, I don’t want to get caught up in the tit for tat nasty – blown out of all proportion debate that we have had so far. I will write something – but maybe I will be that bit more respectful to those who govern us – and maybe we all should. I note that because the killer is white, with links to the far right – no mention of the words “terrorist’ or ‘terrorism’ has been made- yet, it is hard not to imagine if the killers skin colour had of been different – the headlines and news bulletins would be flooded with words trying to link this to some muslim extremist group either here or abroad – like what happened when the soldier Lee Rigby was murdered by a man who had mental health issues – who happened to be muslim. Maybe we in the media need to also learn to just watch our language and how we present the news to the public.
If all the public hear from the news that they consume and by certain political groups that we are “awash” with immigrants and that we are ‘full’ ‘cannot cope’ our shores are ‘flooded’ and our politicians are inept and unable to control the ‘flow of immigration’ – then maybe, just maybe, it lights the torch paper in people making them angry which then leads to some, who do not have the full control of their mental state, to see themselves as champions for Britain. Whist taking the life of a wife and leaving to children without a mother.
Unity is often seen as a good thing. And depending on what’s being united – that can be the case. However, the current Labour unity against Jeremy Corbyn is going as well as can be expected.
There is so much bad blood flowing around the Labour party at the moment (from its heart to its toe nails) I’m surprised it hasn’t been wheeled into an NHS hospital for a transfusion! Then again, with the track record of some NHS hospitals (Romford Queen’s Hospital) – maybe staying out is the medicine which is keeping it alive.
The belief is that Jeremy Corbyn is a problem for Labour and it’s election chances of 2020. I don’t actually think that Jeremy is the problem at.
The problem in so far as I can see isn’t with Jeremy – but with the uninspiring nature of the other candidates. Why aren’t they doing better? If Labour doesn’t really like them – who will?
If NONE of them seem able to even come close to Jeremy – in terms of engagement, charisma, warmth, charm & voice- what chance does Labour have in 2020 when fighting a real opponent? This particular Labour leader election – must be, must be – one of the worst managed, handled and executed election ever. It’s a disaster in terms of PR, the available candidates and the future election prospects of the party.
If you believe the polls (and after May 2015 why would we?) Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper haven’t captured party members imagination in the same way that Corbyn has. But maybe this reflects the wider trend away from party suits with plukes (spots for those unfamiliar). Just evaluate the Corbyn effect – with the Nigel Farage effect. Great at grabbing headlines. Great at getting party members enthused and great at getting them active in their communities. The problem with Farage is, of course, no one outside his gabble of groupies – want to see him actually running the country!
So, I understand why the Labour party fear a Corbyn win. It would probably be his last success. Capturing the hearts of your party is one thing. Capturing the hearts of a nation is another. As David Cameron has shown us twice – you don’t need to be a brilliant politician or outstanding Prime Minister. But, as RuPaul would say on her drag race “Good luck….and DON’T fuck it up”. Unfortunately since 2007 – the Labour Party hasn’t heeded Lady Ru’s words of rudom.
But surely the bigger problem here is the total lack of enthusiasm for any of the other candidates. A number of Labour’s ‘big beasts’ or just ‘beastly beasts’ have come out for Liz Kendall including David Miliband, Tristram Hunt, Chuka Ummuna, & Margaret Hodge. Liz Kendall? A future leader? A future Prime Minister on the global stage? Really? She ain’t no Angela Merkel or Barbara Castle. One wonders if some of those names attached to her are giving their backing knowing that the public are as likely to vote for Liz as they are for compulsory syphilis injections (and yes, some will) – thereby giving them time to grow within themselves and prepare for their own Labour leadership bid in 2020?
And then…into the debate tumbles Tony Blair, Alistair Campbell and Gordon Brown – all with one message. A message which appears to go against the ‘holy grail’ in which new Labour was built. Negative campaigning on one subject – in which you force feed a message that no one ordered nor has the appetite to taste – let alone devour.
The lack of a future Prime Minister between here & 2025 is a problem for Labour and the problem is that no one seems to know how to handle it. From Blair to Brown; Burnham to Cooper – the undignified way this contest is being played out should give much comfort to Chancellor George Osborne – whose chances of being PM are now looking stronger than ever – especially as he’s had plenty of time to practice and improve his communication skills. By 2020 he will be a force to be reckoned with & could be “our” Tony Blair to “their” David Cameron. We’ve almost forgotten how insignificant and floundering Cameron used to look at the dispatch box when up against Blair. Cameron never did and never could win when facing formidable competition.
Whoever wins the leadership of the Labour party – will face the hardest tests of their political career. They are up against a Tory party machine that survived a major recession and a rather under performing Prime Minister – who then won an election.
The next Labour leader has to not only get the policy right. They must, as Ed Milliband found to his cost, look and sound like someone who could lead the country. For me, the jury is still out on whether this is possible between now and 2025. And I think that’s a real shame.