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Day: January 20, 2011

100 Days of this Labour Shadow Cabinet. What have they said?

So it has been (around) 100 days since Labour put together its Shadow Cabinet. That to me is a fair amount of time to look back on to see how they are doing. There was a big press review of 100 Days of the coalition and 100 days of Barack Obama’s Presidency but I’ve heard nothing about how Labour are settling into their new position as the opposition with a new leader. So I thought I’d list all the main points that Labour have thrown out there in the past 100 days.

So far this is what Labour have said:

‘The Lib Dems are evil’

‘The Tories were always evil’

‘We didn’t do anything wrong’

‘The coalition are doing everything wrong’

‘The Lib Dems are evil’

‘We have a blank page of polices but can tell you for sure when we write them they’ll be better than what anyone else has’

‘Lib Dems come over to Labour and write our policies’

‘The Lib Dems are evil’

‘No please Lib Dems. Please come over and write our policies. Pretty Please’

‘The Lib Dems are evil’

‘Our policy of a Graduate Tax would actually cost students more money in the long run but don’t tell them that – they are thickos are too busy on hating the Lib Dems to notice the alternative was – and is – worse’

‘How can anyone trust Nick Clegg ever again. I mean surely a leader with one tenth or so of MPs should be able to get every policy he wants in a coalition. He’s clearly an imbecile’

‘Women are far more intelligent than men. All MPs should be women. Men are dumb and stupid’ (No prizes for which Labour Cabinet member said that)

The Lib Dems are Evil’

‘Phil Woolas is a good man. A man I am proud to have on my team’

‘My brother wouldn’t bow down to the unions. Therefore he’s not leader’

‘My brother did bow down to the unions. It has fucked up our party for the next few years. I thought a party couldn’t screw up a leadership election as bad as when the Lib Dems appointed Sir Menzies but boy was I wrong’

‘I support AV but secretly hopes it fails. Or maybe I don’t. Bob Crow what do I want to happen?’

‘Why have the coalition allowed Katie Price and Alex Reid to split up? Under a Labour government they would still be happily married. The coalition are bad for publicity seeking marriages’

‘We won Oldham East & Saddleworth – therefore if that was to be replicated in every seat up and down the country – I would be 650-0’

‘There’s loads of money left. How dare anyone suggest we have a debt crisis’

‘Bankers are really awful aren’t they?’

‘We are not just saying everything that voters want to hear. We have real ideas and policies. We just don’t see the need to tell anyone of them just yet’

‘If any Lib Dems are unhappy we’ll happily take them under our wing. As long as they write some policies for us’

‘This isn’t the death of New Labour. This is a new era for the Labour Party’

‘I hated New Labour’

‘Spending less money on the NHS is insanity. We paid upper and lower management a bomb and that proves we are committed. I don’t care if the patients didn’t see any benefit. We wrote a larger cheque and therefore were better’

‘If we had ID Cards like we wanted then we could round up all Lib Dems and shoot them for lying or lying by proxy if they are only members’

‘The Lib Dems are evil’

‘We want all Lib Dems to join Labour as we think this is a good home for them’

‘Danny Alexander is a Ginger Rodent but personal attacks are bad and wrong. However he really is one and a big one at that’

‘We have policies. A free gun to shoot Lib Dems with for anyone who votes Labour’

‘Is it not true that we only hate the Lib Dems because the Tories offered them a fuller and fairer deal. We are not not acting like spurned lovers. Do you really think Nick Clegg prefers them to us…?

‘The Lib Dems are acting like every harlot in history. I know we said that in May but it was such a good line we are saying it again’

‘The Lib Dems have Chlamydia. We are glad they chose to infect another party’

‘Seriously how did I lose that leadership election? My brother can’t hold a candle to me’

‘What do you mean that you need a personality to win an election? Are you freaking serious? Fuck. We’re boned’

‘We wouldn’t cut a damned thing because people don’t want that. We’d let the next generation sort our mistakes’

‘Does anyone remember how great we were in 1997 when we had a charismatic leader?’

‘What do you mean that people actually prefer Nick Clegg to me? This must mean I’m really hated because I’ve spent the last six months telling everyone that Nick Clegg and his party are evil’

‘The Lib Dems are evil’

‘Make all bankers work off the national debt via slave labour in new Niké shoe making mines’

‘I do not practice my PMQs debates in the mirror. Whose a pretty boy Ed? You are a pretty boy future PM Miliband’

‘David why are standing behind me when I’m practicing my PMQs speeches?’

‘I am not the Work Experience kid. I am the Leader of the Labour Party’

‘I do love my husband. Balls by name. Tit by nature’

‘What do you mean some eejit has made up fifty odd quotes about us and hasn’t listed a single one of our policies? The man is a fool’

For the record these quotes have all either been made up entirely or paraphrased to the extreme.

This is pretty much how I’ve seen the first 100 days of this Labour Shadow Cabinet and get this – I’m not a Labour hater. I was very supportive of Tony Blair – certainly during his first two terms in office. I thought and still think that David Miliband would be a tremendous leader of the party and of the country as a whole. However all we’ve seen so far is a weak opposition who are more intent on playing on the public dislike than actually paying back the countries debt.

As it stands I have the Tories ahead of Labour in where I think my loyalties lie – and that is saying something. At least Cameron realises there is a real problem and is trying to fix it. Ed Miliband and his party do not accept that the debt is the #1 challenge that faces this nation not in the short-term but also in the medium to long term. If the debt situation worsens then long-term we are all screwed.

Until Labour take their heads out of the sand I don’t think anyone with a clear conscious can genuinely support them on their policies, only on loyalty. One day those that are loyal to any one party will die out if that said party actually stops formulating policies. I support a party due to their policies, if they radically changed then I would shop around and find a home for my political beliefs. I’m not loyal because I am and forever will be Liberal Democrat. I instead choose to support the party at this time because they share the majority of ideals that I do.

Labour will not attract any new members due to policy at this current juncture. The only new members they’ll get are disaffected Lib Dems and people who have strong family ties to the party. For Labour to grow they need to stop dilly-dallying over the steering wheel and decide what they stand for. Until they do this then they are in all honesty a joke and I find that sad because they are less than a decade removed from being a progressive force of good for this country.

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All Hail Professor Martin Conboy

Stepping away from Politics for two blog posts in a row but this is a special one for all that know him…

All Hail Dr Professor Conboy of the University of Sheffield!

Yes that is right folks. The man who was far too intelligent for the likes of me at the little old Surrey Institute of Art & Design University College has moved up in the world and now is officially even cleverer than he was previously – which was to be honest pretty darn clever. I like to think I’m not stupid but in the presence of genuinely dialled in people I feel pretty darn dumb. It is a bit like when doing a Pub Quiz machine with Sean – I’m not even in his league.

Professor Conboy is the author of the following publications:

* The Press and Popular Culture (2002)
* Journalism: A Critical History (2004)
* Tabloid Britain: Constructing a Community through Language (2006)
* The Language of the News: Communication and Power (2007)
* The Special Issue of Journalism Studies on Global Popular Journalism (2007)

So this is a) a short note of congratulations for the man and b) a note to all students who may pass under his – or any other lectureres/doctors/professors – wing. Actually listen to them, work hard and you can get a lot out of it. I didn’t and that was doing myself a disservice. I sailed through university with my only eyes on the practical side of Journalism and had little to no interest in the theory. It was this that turned by comfortable 2:1 into a 2:2. However whilst that might have been all fine and dandy in a practical sense, part of the journey of life and certainly university should involve expanding the mind.

For example Michel Foucault. I know of the name. I know he was pretty darn smart. Beyond that…

I am sure I spent the best part of fifty hours either in a lecture or in a seminar discussing the aforementioned scholar. Alas without doing any research I couldn’t tell you too much more about him. I zoned out. It wasn’t my interest and I’d have preferred to be spending this time either up in the print or radio newsroom. If I had my time again I’d take a legitimate interest to try and understand. So for all those at university or going to university in the future, heed my warning, make a real effort with every class you have. Whilst in the long run it might not directly help you career wise, what it will do is help your ability to learn along the greatest journey of all – life – and those who sail through life and stop learning are people I do feel sorry for.

So well done Professor Conboy on being awarded a personal chair and keep giving the students who pass through your door the opportunity to grow to become the men and women that they can be. If they choose to keep their mind closed then it is their loss but if you get through to a handful and help them achieve greater life goals then it is a job – and life – well spent.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post. Please leave any comments or contact me directly via the E-Mail Me link on the Right Hand Nav. You can stay in touch with the blog following me on Twitter or by liking the blog on Facebook. Please share this content via the Social Media links below if you think anyone else would enjoy reading.