New Labour: its people and its ideas
This writeup lists those people, places, words and institutions that have something to do with the UK's Labour Party
its 21st century incarnation as 'New Labour'.
(1) The People:
- Leader and current Prime Minister
- As education secretary, he pushed through unpopoluar tuition fee reforms. The loyal Blairite has since replaced Blunkett as Home Secretary.
- Quit as Health Secretary and since returned, in an obscurely titled post, to head the election campaign instead, sidelining Gordon Brown. Widely tipped as future leader material, but probably a weak contender unless something amis happens to Brown.
Previously in charge of education, then an authoritarian Home Secretary
. Forced out after a nasty sex scandal, in which it was reported he used his influence to obtain a passport for his mistress's nanny. Watch out for a Mandelsonesque return to power.
- Chancellor of the Exchequer
since 1997. The longest serving chancellor of the 20th Century, though still not leader. His enmity with Blair is famous, but despite threats of demotion, perhaps he is too essential, the consitently strong economy being one of Labour's great successes.
- The former tabloid hack was Tony's right hand man and master of spin, until quitting in 2003. Although his departure wasn't intended to acknowledge any wrong doing, it did come amid a backlash at the government's 'culture of spin', shortly before Lord Hutton
was due to adjudicate on the bitter feud between Campbell and the BBC over the death of MOD scientist David Kelly
- Close friend of Blair. On visiting a fish and chip shop in his northern Hartlepool constituency, he once enquired about the 'guacamole dip'. It was in fact mushy peas. Previously Minister without Portfolio
and Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
, he left the front bench amid controversy on two occasions, only to return to politics soon after. He is now European Commissioner for Trade.
- AKA 'Two Jags
', and later, 'Two Jabs'. Deputy PM and formerly in charge of transport
, demoted in the reshuffle of 2001.
- Former Home Secretary
, now Secretary of state for foreign and commonwealth affairs. Bears an uncanny resemblance to the Demon Headmaster
- Newly listed here having rejoined the Labour fold as a Labour Mayor of London
. Originally, Blair tried to stitch him up and prevent him from running as the Labour candidate, due to his overly leftwing credentials and opposition to tube
privatisation. He stood as an independent with overwhelming support and became mayor. Despite the massive betrayal, Tony Blair invited him back, much to the chagrin of many in Labour.
(2) The Enemies (Within) - New Labour's enemies on the left
- respected socialist
, recently retired backbencher, outspoken critic of the 'New' in New Labour.
- another leftie backbencher, attends demonstrations and criticises Blair.
- Head of Transport for London
, helping Ken attack the tube
- one of the few mainstream media commentators to attack New Labour from a clear left wing perspective.
- Some call him the Welsh Ken Livingstone.
- Attacked the government over the sale of arms to Indonesia
, amongst other things.
- Defected from the Labour party a few years ago, now leads the Socialist Labour Party
- billed a comedian, his TV show The Mark Thomas Product
is more like investigative journalism than comedy
- comedian and impressionist who attacks politicians in general (so I think worthy of inclusion into the list).
- one of the most popular New Labourites, newly moved into the dissenters' category after retiring from politics and bitching about her former colleagues.
- Another new entry here. Demoted in 2001 from Foreign Secretary
to leader of the House of Commons
, he resigned from this post in 2003 in opposition to the Iraq war.
- Resigned at the same time as Robin Cook, for the same reason, but no one liked her as much for it.
(3) Tony's Cronies - Supporters and well-wishers outside the party
- Formula 1 guy, donated £1 Million and recieved an exemption from the ban on sports tobacco sponsorship.
Eventually the party was embarassed into giving the money back.
The Hinduja Brothers
. - Yep, they've been at the £1 Million gifts again, this time its passports they're giving away for cash.
Lobbyist friend, involved in the cash-for-access affair.
(4) the Buzz-words
- more a Tory
concept, but as alive as it ever was
The Liberal Elite
- AKA Guardian reading ponces
'Bogus Asylum Seeker'
- Between them, the Tories and New Labour managed to badly demonise refugees.
Boom and Bust
- The age old cycle of boom and dramatic economic downturn will apparently be avoided in future.
- Said Tony Blair regarding the Good Friday Agreement
: "This is not a time for soundbites. I feel the hand of history
on my shoulder"
The New Deal
- Scheme for getting (forcing) young people into work.
Prawn Cocktail Party
- New Labour's style of politics
The Third Way
- Not too Socialist
, not too neo-liberal
ist, but just right.
Rights and Responsibilities
- Victorian sounding mumbo jumbo from the likes of Jack Straw
Public Private Partnership
- Instead if privatisation. More cost to the government for worse public serices, but businesses benefit
Education, Education, Education
- TB's alleged top three priorities
Backbone, not backdown
- another soundbyte
- we all play a role in the economy
Ethical Foreign Policy
- now officially dropped in favour of the inethical one.
- Read: Privatisation
- of schools, etc.
tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime
Equality of opportunity, not of outcome
- part of the spin strategy
I would be glad to recieve suggestions for further additions.