Re: Voting Systems

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Stanley » 26 Jul 2016, 04:21

Tiz, in the case of the leadership we are talking about natural justice. A decision was made to be guided by the membership. The membership spoke (just as they do in elections), certain factions didn't like it and are using their powers to block a democratic decision. I got acknowledgement of my membership from the local party this morning and the secretary tells me that they have been instructed not to hold any meetings until after the October leadership election. This is not democracy.....
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by PanBiker » 26 Jul 2016, 09:16

Stanley wrote: I got acknowledgement of my membership from the local party this morning and the secretary tells me that they have been instructed not to hold any meetings until after the October leadership election. This is not democracy.....
They haven't rediscovered me yet Stanley. :wink:
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Stanley » 27 Jul 2016, 05:15

Strange, I thought that you were in front of me..... The secretary did warn that they were under pressure and new memberships were slow to arrive from Labour HQ. They start to take my money in August but I will not have a vote in the Leadership Election. Haven't made my mind up yet as to whether a to put in a written protest. I don't want to load them too much.....
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by PanBiker » 27 Jul 2016, 07:42

I have my membership card and an email from the constituency telling me about the NEC imposed ban on meetings but nothing from the branch. I'm afraid that I would still be holding meetings to move business and I would argue the point when taken to task. Doesn't look like I will get my votes in the NEC election either, they must know I'm an old activist.
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by David Whipp » 27 Jul 2016, 07:52

From the perspective of someone on the outside, can I comment that the Byzantine nature of the Labour Party dumbfounds me.

One of the reasons that I'm a Liberal (apart from mother's milk...) is that I saw the Labour Party as a home for those more interested in internal strife and, indeed internecine warfare, than making changes in the world. I might be being uncharitable, but that's certainly what it looks like.

It's reminiscent of the spits in religious organisations which lead to ever more numerous, but smaller, groups believing that their faith is the correct path.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Tizer » 27 Jul 2016, 09:28

That's spot on David, exactly what I feel too. I even used the word Byzantine in another post. The Cameron lot were a bunch of Eton toffs but the Corbyn lot seem to be a cult and come over as being sinister.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by PanBiker » 27 Jul 2016, 09:54

It wasn't like that when I was in charge, (of the branch). We had regular and productive monthly meetings at the Weavers with some good banter and debates, guest speakers and the like. The GC's and EC groups were lively and comradely as we formulated local policy and discussed resolutions for conference.

The overriding driving force was a basic belief in socialist principals, I suppose I was helped here with associations with the ILP, and the Clarion and the numerous comrades I met there. It all started going belly up when the Party ditched Clause IV courtesy of Blair the original draft text as below.

"To secure for the workers by hand or by brain the full fruits of their industry and the most equitable distribution thereof that may be possible upon the basis of the common ownership of the means of production, distribution and exchange, and the best obtainable system of popular administration and control of each industry or service."

This was the final straw for many that consider themselves socialists. This and the systematic demonising of the very principals the the Party was founded on by New Labour was the reason I withdrew my support and ditched my membership.

I am not advocating a return to a literal interpretation of Clause IV as originally written but the underlying socialist values that support it are still to be valued and will provide a workable alternative to the current abhorrent policies forced by the Tories.
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Tizer » 27 Jul 2016, 10:21

I can't speak for David but my concern is not with the ordinary local Labour supporters but with Corbyn and his associates who are driving many of those ordinary voters to switch to UKIP or the Tories. The Times today reports a poll which is claimed to show that more than two and half million people who voted Labour in last year's general election think that May would make a better PM than Corbyn. The poll puts the Tories on 40% and Labour on 28%. Janice Turner who writes regularly in The Times has often reported on the views of people in her home town Doncaster who are ditching Labour because of Corbyn. She comes from a working class background with socialist principles and is always fighting for the poor and the least able in society but she strongly believes that Corbyn is ruining the Labour Party. She too uses the word cult to describe his group of associates and she criticises their attitude to women.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by plaques » 27 Jul 2016, 11:42

Tizer wrote:The Times today reports a poll which is claimed to show that more than two and half million people who voted Labour in last year's general election think that May would make a better PM than Corbyn
. A poll of 2.5 million? that's some poll. Its probably just a very small sample extrapolated into the total Labour voters. The only thing I see is that the 'newspapers' are writing endless negative opinions against Corbyn presented as fact. More often as not these opinions are so convoluted moving from one distortion to another that is impossible to follow what the real thread of argument is. I might add that I try to read as many of these opinions as possible irrespective of where they originate. Unfortunately at the end of the day many people tend to believe what is being rammed down their throats. I can only hope that the readers of OG can see through this deluge of propaganda.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Tizer » 27 Jul 2016, 15:27

I'm sure you're right, it has to be a much, much smaller sample than 2.5 million, that's why I wrote `claimed to show'. I also agree that there's a lot of negative comment about Corbyn. But still the fact is that the Corbyn gang have upset a lot of the people that one would expect to support them. Other than here on OG and some comments in the media I don't find anyone supporting him.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by PanBiker » 27 Jul 2016, 17:30

Tizer wrote:Other than here on OG and some comments in the media I don't find anyone supporting him.
That sound very much like on of those "but" sentences Tiz.

Regardless of polls, media hype and negative comments we will have to wait and see what the ballot reveals from those allowed to vote.
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Stanley » 28 Jul 2016, 02:57

The three main parties all have their thumbnail descriptions, the Tories are all toffs, the Liberals all have beards and wear sandals, Labour are always fighting internally. I don't hold any of those to be universally true and it doesn't interfere with my voting in elections. As Ian says, time will tell. I am content to wait.
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Tizer » 28 Jul 2016, 09:02

How about Owen Smith as an alternative to Jeremy Corbyn? He's promised a wealth tax and to strengthen workers' rights, and lots of other things (listed here LINK) that I should have thought would appeal to Labour supporters. I know they can only be promises at the moment, but then the same applies to anything Jeremy Corbyn says. Smith claims he would be better at uniting the party and it certainly needs that.

And how about the suggestion of Clive Lewis, shadow defence secretary, that Labour could form pacts with parties across the left. In the Guardian yesterday he's quoted as saying: “I sit and listen to Caroline Lucas and seven or eight times out of 10, I listen and think: not sure about that bit but most of it I agree with. When the Tories jeer her, I want to stand up. Half the time when the SNP are speaking, I listen to what Mhairi Black or others are saying and think I agree with that. I listen to Tom Brake [a Lib Dem] and think I agree with what he says on that issue. There is a common set of themes and values and principles that we need to identify as progressives and then start to work out how can we work together not just to stop the Tories but to have better politics ...The first thing is we are going to have to work within the current electoral system. One of the agreements would have to be all of the political parties except the Tories and a chunk of our own."

What I want to see is a more effective opposition party, or parties, to balance against the Tories and keep them in check. :smile:

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Stanley » 29 Jul 2016, 04:25

The big difference between Corbyn and Smith is that Corbyn is talking about embedding principles in the Party, Smith has no history of being anything other than a pragmatist and I class his aspirations as just that, bullet points to flesh out an election bid.
On the matter of cooperation between parties to form an effective opposition to the regressive policies of the Tories.... I have been advocating that ever since 2010.
The politics that has been attracting my attention is the Democratic convention in Philadelphia. Hilary Clinton sounds far more presidential than Trump and there have been some very powerful speeches for her. I thought Obama was particularly good yesterday. There's no such thing as the perfect candidate but Clinton v. Trump looks like a shoo-in to me.... But of course you never know.....
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Tizer » 29 Jul 2016, 09:24

I think Clinton will be going for `surgical strikes' on Trump, after all he's got enough vulnerable spots! It's going to be very interesting. But, yes, who knows what will happen - after the referendum here and now the Hinckley surprise we can't be sure of anything. There have been some strange things going on with Bernie Sanders' supporters. Apparently some of them still think they can vote for him and so they're shouting for him and not Clinton. Some of them are in denial and think he'll be President.

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Re: Re: Voting Systems

Post by Whyperion » 29 Jul 2016, 22:06

Why didn't Michelle Obamha stand for election?
Is the Corbyn is not fit to be a leader a spin by right-wing press ? (My mum does not like him, and neither at least one (?all?) my mums local labour councillors, not logical reasons for so doing so far as I can see. When I voted in the Doncaster area it was to ditch Milliband by going TUSC, I dont think anyone particulary noticed though.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Tizer » 30 Jul 2016, 10:09

She doesn't like politics and prefers to work outside of politics to help people. I expect she'll be working with charities in the future.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by PanBiker » 17 Sep 2017, 11:23

Back onto the thread topic with this. The Electoral Commission are to trial five areas with the need to provide personal ID in order to claim your ballot paper. There is concern that his may put voters off from attending. Apparently they are going to trial different forms of ID to see which would be the easiest and most efficient.

Five Areas in England to Pilot Voter ID Checks

I don't really have a problem with this although I would struggle with photo ID, I don't have a handy form of this such as a photo driving licence, I would have to rock up with my passport.

It would be a lot easier If we had a National Identity Card although to some this suggestion would be an assault on personal liberty, not withstanding that we are already on camera an average of 200 times a day, our vehicles are tracked with ANPR on roads and in car parks. Every time you use a hole in the wall or present a credit or debit card for payment you are both identified and pinpointed to within inches of your current location. What difference would a proper ID card make other than one of benefit and convenience? I personally would make it smart and code it with voluntary medical information as well as ID data. In the present climate where the national security status flips between serious and critical it could definitely be beneficial.
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by BillHowcroft » 17 Sep 2017, 12:56

... and the USA immigration have got my fingerprints and the Ancestry family history corporation have got my DNA.

Interesting BBC programme on how Cambridge Analytica can profile people from their social media (& OGFB) postings. The presenter found their results eerily accurate. Here is the Guardian on a similar topic:
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/ ... -democracy

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Stanley » 18 Sep 2017, 03:22

Analysing meta-data is the favourite tool now for the intelligence services. We used to joke about '1984' and Big Brother, I'm afraid it's reality today... I have always agreed about ID cards. We had them in the war and us kids had ID tags on bits of string round our necks so we could be identified if found dead. That's why they took the first free school photographs....

Image

Four years and four months old. You can see the string for the dog tags.....
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by BillHowcroft » 18 Sep 2017, 18:36

Apparently the Stasi could track citizens by their handwriting:
http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-41283012

One of my wife's favourite films is 'Das Leben der Anderen'. When we visited Berlin we went to visit the DDR museum with its chilling reminders of the Stasi and totalitarian oppression. Funnily I did German at evening classes for a couple of years and my tutor was an Osti lady who used to wax lyrical about the young communist camps when they went out to help with the harvest.

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Re: Voting Systems

Post by PanBiker » 18 Sep 2017, 19:55

When we visited Prague a few years ago we went on a walking city tour advertised as the political tour. The tour lasted a couple of hours and visited the sites in the city important to various political moments in history, mainly the Russian occupation but also covering the Nazi occupation during WWII. The tour was led by an English speaking Prague citizen who was born and educated up to secondary school level under the Russian regime. We visited the the site of the radio station at the top of Wenceslas Square which was besieged by tanks in August 1968 when the bid for reforms within the Communist party was stamped on by Russian occupation. Our guide who was teenager at the time took great delight in pointing out the building which was formerly the Russian Museum of Culture to which all Czech schoolchildren had to attend at some point in their attempted re-education. Even more delight in it's use in the present day, it has a huge yellow M on the top where a red star used to be, she thought it hilarious that it is now a McDonald's.
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by Stanley » 19 Sep 2017, 03:07

I know a man called Eberhard Wachtler who was in charge of the industrial museum in ?, I forget the city, in East Germany. They had many faults of course but one thing the regime did was fully fund worker's history......
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Re: Voting Systems

Post by PanBiker » 19 Sep 2017, 08:25

The folk of Prague all agree that the best legacy from the Russian occupation is the integrated transport system. Train, Metro, Bus and Tram. One ticket that you buy for a day, week, month or year and you can travel on anything, routes are timed so that you never have to wait more than about 5 minutes for a train and 2 or 3 for bus, metro or tram. It's cheap as well, it was about £6.00 for 4 days travel anywhere in the city, and it gets even cheaper when you buy a longer duration pass. You must have a ticket though as the inspectors take a dim view of free loaders and issue a hefty fine. You can buy tickets anywhere, post office, newsagents, bars, street kiosks as well as at the stations and terminus's. You buy a ticket and turn it on by putting it in the validation machine on your first journey, this stamps the date and time on and you only do it once for the duration of the pass. The machines are in all the carriages, no matter what the ride.
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