Left Foot Forward

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Left Foot Forward is one of this blog’s favourite blogs and is recommended. A selection of current stories from Left Foot Forward for your delectation ;)

Transport secretary called out over rail dispute mistruths on BBC Question Time

The transport secretary Mark Harper has been accused of “muddying the waters” by presenting misleading narratives in the rail dispute, on BBC Question Time last night.

When answering questions on resolving the rail strikes, Mark Harper attempted to shirk responsibility by referring to train drivers pay and unused ticket offices.

It comes as the RMT union smashed their latest mandate for strike action, meaning members working for 14 train operating companies could strike again over the next six months. 

It is their third mandate in the National Rail Dispute, with the latest receiving a 91% yes vote.

Mick Lynch, RMT general secretary said the mandate sends a clear message to employers of the “huge anger” amongst rail workers.

Union leader accuses government of ‘punishing’ civil servants in pay dispute

‘Why are they treating their own staff worse than anyone else?’

The government has been accused of ‘punishing’ their own staff and ‘making an example’ of civil servants by the leader of the union for civil service workers.

In an ongoing dispute over pay, job losses and redundancy terms, civil servants with the union Prospect are on strike today for a second time in what is the largest industrial action the union has taken in over a decade.

Their members’ pay has declined by up to 26% in real terms since 2010, with civil servants on some of the worst pay settlements in the public sector, having been dealt a recent 4.5% pay offer by the government.

The union have called for a ‘serious pay offer’ that recognises the cost-of-living crisis that their members are facing.

Rishi Sunak slammed for using taxpayer-funded helicopter for trip that would have taken just over an hour by train

The train ticket would’ve cost Sunak £30 return, yet he opted to travel by air, at a cost to the taxpayer in the region of £6,000.

The Tories would like you to believe that they care about climate change and the effective use of taxpayers’ money, yet their actions show the complete opposite.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is fond of taking helicopters and private jets for short trips and is now once more being slammed for using a taxpayer-funded helicopter to make a journey that would have taken little more than an hour on the train.

Sunak took a chopper to Southampton to attend a GP surgery and pharmacy to promote the government’s latest intervention to reduce the strain on GP practices.

According to train timetables, had the Prime Minister taken the 8:35am train from Waterloo he would have arrived in Southampton at 9:50am. That Sunak decided to fly to the port city and back via helicopter has led to some Tory MPs fearing that it will cement Sunak’s image as an out of touch Prime Minister.

The train ticket would’ve cost Sunak £30 return, yet he opted to travel by air, at a cost to the taxpayer in the region of £6,000.

One Tory MP told the Guardian: “Is it unfair to say that the weekend was about a powerful unelected individual who is unfeasibly wealthy and lacks the common touch … and King Charles III?”

Bid launched to revoke GB News’ broadcasting licence

‘The segment of concern gave a wholly biased account of the verdict in the trial of Donald Trump for sexual assault’

Ofcom has been sent a strongly worded letter from two leading Green Party politicians, calling for the media regulator to revoke the broadcasting licence given to GB News after the scandal hit channel was once again found to have breached broadcasting regulations.

Molly Scott Cato, Green Party Speaker on Economy and Finance and Councillor Jack Lenox, Parliamentary Candidate for Lancaster, have shared a picture of their letter on Twitter, with Lenox tweeting: “Jacob Rees-Mogg’s defence of Donald Trump’s sexual abuse is disgusting. And his brazen attempt to mislead the public is a grotesque abuse of our broadcasting regulations.

“Today @GreenPartyMolly and I have written to Ofcom asking them to revoke GB News’ broadcasting licence.”

Ardent Brexiteer Rees-Mogg has been slammed for his GB News broadcast on the Donald Trump sexual assault trial. Rees-Mogg emphasised that Trump had been found ‘not guilty of rape’, and also questioned the US legal system. Rees-Mogg was joined on the programme by Kari Lake, a top Republican and well-known 2020 Election denier, as well as Nigel Farage.

A jury found that Trump had sexually abused magazine columnist E. Jean Carroll in a New York department store in the 1990s. The jury also found Trump liable for defamation for calling the writer’s accusations “a hoax and a lie”.

Reacting to Rees-Mogg’s comments on Trump, James O’Brien tweeted: “When Owen Paterson broke Parliamentary rules, Jacob Rees-Mogg attacked the rules.

“When a jury decided Donald Trump was a sex offender, Jacob Rees-Mogg attacked trial by jury. There’s a pattern here.”

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Oxford council calls for Thames Water to be taken into public ownership

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Workers from Thames Water delivering a temporary water supply from a tanker

CAMPAIGNERS have welcomed Oxford City Council’s unanimous vote in favour of calling for Thames Water to be taken into public ownership following a motion to end water privatisation.

The motion, proposed by Green Party councillors Chris Jarvis and Lois Muddiman, will also see the council writing to the firm to request that its chief executive officer Sarah Bentley attend a meeting with them.

Since water was privatised in England in 1989, over £72 billion has been paid in dividends to privateer shareholders, while infrastructure has deteriorated.

According to the GMB union’s research, Thames Water lets 635 million litres of water leak out of its system every day, equivalent to leaving a hosepipe on for 73 years.


Continue ReadingOxford council calls for Thames Water to be taken into public ownership

Green party conference opens with call for wealth tax to fund renewables

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The Greens have kicked off their conference with a call for taxes on wealth and “dirty profits” to finance the transition to renewable energy – and a condemnation of Labour’s plans, unveiled last week, as woefully insufficient.

At the gathering in Harrogate, days after a Labour conference based heavily around clean power initiatives, the Green party in England and Wales – the Scottish Greens are separate – repeatedly stressed policy differences not just over renewables but also areas such as support for strikers and public ownership.

The party’s co-leaders, Carla Denyer and Adrian Ramsay, pledged in a joint speech that they would introduce an emergency tax package to fund renewable energy and a scheme for mass domestic insulation.

The Green Party: Tax the richest 1% to pay for better, warmer homes, say Greens

Continue ReadingGreen party conference opens with call for wealth tax to fund renewables

Green Party members vote to strongly endorse and affiliate to Enough is Enough

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Enough is Enough is a mass movement resisting the cost of living crisis. It was launched earlier this year, and has grown rapidly. Over 500,000 people signed up to the campaign by the end of August and the group has held packed out rallies in cities across the country. On October 1, Enough is Enough held protests and actions in solidarity with striking workers in 50 towns and cities.

Enough is Enough has a set of five demands – delivering a real pay rise for workers, slashing energy bills, ending food poverty, ensuring decent homes for all, and taxing the rich. Recent polling from Survation found the group’s demands are popular with the public. Survation found 84 per cent support capping energy bills, 76 per cent support pay rising with inflation, and 72 per cent support increasing taxes on the rich.

Continue ReadingGreen Party members vote to strongly endorse and affiliate to Enough is Enough

AJ what a (Blairite) cnut!

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I’m going with EM

I could help him

Actually, I’m thinking that I will

It was three or four days ago when the challenge EM started.

Then I knew he was the one to support.

Shame that he’s not a Leftie or a Socialist or he’s not been yet.

IDS terrible incompetence, repeated attacks on those least able to defend themselves. This nonsense about welfare tourism – do you know how difficult it is to claim benefits? three months?


ed: actually attack at every possibility. Be opposition. IDS is terribly easy cos he has been incredibly incompetent. later: opposition parties should criticise without reserve. That’s what they used to do isn’t it? Criticise, moan, call them (far worse than your classmates at Oxford).

Labour party can employ me instead of the Yank twat.

but BTW, I support the Green Party. You should have employed me before I said that.

What has EM got to do?

He was following a strategy of not doing anything. The problems for that is UKIP and SNP gains in Scotland. It looks dodge for the Labour Party now – there was an expectation that the Labour Party would be fine at GE2015. Now it’s changed.

It looks as though EM now has encourage people to vote Labour. Hmm.

The problem is that they’re done nothing to distinguish themselves from anyone else. Well, they may have done a few things but it’s not been noticed. Another problem is the ice cream stall. (economics BS theory). Yet another problem is that all these political parties are REALLY indistinguishable. It’s not really that they’re indistinguishable – it is that there is no difference between them – and so they are indistinguishable because it is the same homogonous Eton mess.

Continue ReadingAJ what a (Blairite) cnut!