Monday, June 27, 2016

Morning Star Reports on Brexit: EU President Says Get Out Fast To British Leavers
Morning Star

European Parliament president tells Cameron to get on with it

European Parliament president Martin Schulz said Britain should formally apply for Brexit immediately, newspaper Bild reported yesterday.

Mr Schulz said: “We now expect the British government to deliver now. The summit on Tuesday is the appropriate moment to do so.”

His comments echoed a statement by the foreign ministers of Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg on Saturday that “we now expect the UK government to provide clarity and give effect to this decision as soon as possible.”

But German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s chief of staff Peter Altmaier appeared to back voices in Britain calling for a reversal of the Brexit vote. He told the RND newspaper: “Politicians in London should have the possibility to reconsider the consequences of an exit.”

German Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said British Prime Minister David Cameron had committed a “grand and historic blunder” in calling the referendum and “Britons will one day curse” Boris Johnson.

“The British have now decided to go. We will not hold talks about what the EU can still offer the Britons to keep them in,” he said.

“It is clear: You can’t be a bit pregnant. Nor have half a partnership.”

Ms Merkel struck a more harmonious chord on Saturday following a meeting of her Christian Democrat Union party.

“The negotiations must take place in a businesslike, good climate,” she said. “It should not take ages, that is true, but I would not fight now for a short time-frame.”

Chinese Finance Minister Lou Jiwei said that while the Brexit vote had “cast a shadow over the global economy,” markets had overreacted to the news. He said: “The knee-jerk reaction from the market is probably a bit excessive and needs to calm down and take an objective view.”

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls called for a change in style from the EU yesterday.

“We must put an end to this sad and finicky Europe. Too often it is intrusive on details and desperately absent on what’s essential,” he said.

“We must break away from the dogma of ‘ever more Europe.’ Europe must act not by principle but when it is useful and pertinent.”

US Secretary of State John Kerry, on a tour of EU states, said: “The most important thing is that all of us, as leaders, work together to provide as much continuity, as much stability, as much certainty as possible.”

Putschist MPs ‘Let The Tories Off The Hook’

by Conrad Landin in Britain

Unions rally round under-fire Labour leader

LABOUR MPs calling for the head of Jeremy Corbyn are “letting the Tories off the hook,” trade unions said yesterday as they rallied round the leader.

Union reps on Labour’s ruling executive signed a defiant statement to show that Mr Corbyn still had institutional support after seven members of the shadow cabinet resigned in protest at his continued leadership.

The leader of Labour’s most recent affiliate said party members would be “baffled and angry” at the shadow cabinet resignations. Fire Brigades Union general secretary Matt Wrack pointed his hoses at the quitters, suggesting their actions had been “co-ordinated to cause maximum damage” to Mr Corbyn.

“It is bizarre that some of the MPs making the loudest criticism of Jeremy Corbyn over the referendum completely failed to convince the electorate in their own constituencies,” he said.

“Following the referendum, Labour should be setting out policies to defend jobs, public services and wages as an exit from the EU is negotiated.

“Instead, some Labour MPs are playing irresponsible and silly games from their Westminster bubble.”

Unite south-east secretary Jenny Formby, one of the executive members behind the statement in support of Mr Corbyn, said it was “nonsense” to blame him for the result. “Now more than ever is a time for loyalty and unity,” she stormed. “The timing of this is appalling.”

Communication Workers’ Union leader Dave Ward fired off a missive saying Mr Corbyn “has our full support” as leader.

“Jeremy Corbyn is, and remains, the catalyst for change in the Labour Party and the country,” he said.
“Those who seek to oust him represent the politics that forgot ordinary people.”

And food union BFAWU turned up the heat. “At a time when we should be exploiting the division within the Tory Party, calls for internal votes of no confidence within our party are an indulgent distraction,” the union said in a statement.

They said plotters would “only serve to let the Conservative government off the hook for the damage they have heaped upon our communities and the crisis they have caused in pursuit of power.”

‘We Need Leaders Like Jeremy Now’

by Will Stone in Britain

Festival’s Left Field panel debates referendum outcome

A BRITAIN outside the EU needs leaders like Jeremy Corbyn, festival activists heard in a heated post-referendum debate.

Political panellists waded in to defend the Labour leader in the timely discussion on Glastonbury’s Left Field stage on Saturday.

In reference to moves to topple Mr Corbyn by the Labour right, Compass chairman Neal Lawson said: “The answer is not to give the keys back to the New Labour lot who crashed the car.”

Labour MP Clive Lewis, who stood in for shadow chancellor John McDonnell, attributed the EU vote outcome to decades of neoliberal policies that have isolated whole communities.“

Labour has a lot of soul-searching to do, but I will defend Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership,” he said.

“I will not stand back to let the neoliberal wing of the party that got us into this mess in the first place take back control.

“This is not about Corbyn’s EU campaign. These people have tried to victimise him for the last year.”

However, the debate wasn’t simply a love-in for post-rationalising Remainers.

Several hecklers yelled “rubbish” over an address by Green MEP Molly Scott Cato after she criticised Leave voters.

“You can’t write off people who voted Out,” one said. “I voted Out.”

Mr Lewis accepted that voters weren’t all Little Englanders.

“Many voted out as a kick back against austerity, neoliberalism and the treatment of Greece and the refugees in the Calais camp,” he said. “We need a massive reinvestment in our economy,” he added.

Both Mr Corbyn and Mr McDonnell pulled out of their scheduled Glastonbury visits in the wake of the surprise referendum result.

But Labour deputy leader Tom Watson, a Glastonbury regular, did make the pilgrimage to Worthy Farm and posted photos from the Left Field tent. He was enjoying a silent disco as the party leadership came under attack overnight.

Dozens of journalists rushed to Reading train station in an attempt to intercept him as he headed back to London to deal with the crisis but were disappointed to find he was not on the train.
The Star asks: Why is it important to have a left-wing voice at Glasto?

Dave Smith
Blacklist Support Group chairman

Glastonbury has always been about counterculture. It’s not all about the Pyramid stage. Radical politics has always been a big part of Glastonbury and long may it continue.

Matthew Smitheman
CND volunteer

I think it’s important for raising awareness of issues that aren’t covered in the mainstream media and finding people with similar views. I always come back from Glastonbury more encouraged to make the world a better place.

Faiza Shaheen
Centre for Labour and Social Studies (Class) director

It’s really important to mix politics and issues with the music at the festival. Doing so in an accessible way is a great tool in the fight against political apathy.

April Windle
Left Field stage regular

I think it’s essential in promoting open-mindedness at the festival. It’s at the heart of the festival’s ethos. Politics in music is equally important too.

Party Faithful Rally Behind Their Leader

by Luke James in Britain

Momentum back Corbyn with protest outside Parliament

LABOUR activists will stage a show of support for Jeremy Corbyn outside Parliament this evening as he confronts coup leaders at a make-or-break meeting of party MPs.

The Momentum campaign group has called an emergency protest in Westminster to coincide with the weekly meeting of the Parliamentary Labour Party, the scene of regular attempts to destabilise the leadership.

A rump of MPs on Labour’s right is to push for a motion of no confidence in Mr Corbyn less than a year after he was democratically elected by party members with a landslide majority.

Momentum organiser James Schneider said: “The membership is still entirely behind him. He won this enormous mandate nine months ago. But also I think, more importantly, the country can’t afford for us to be having this kind of divisive civil war right now.”

The meeting comes after resignations from the shadow cabinet, a bid to force Mr Corbyn’s resignation, which reports claimed was co-ordinated via a Snapchat group.

Hilary Benn initiated the plot when he called Mr Corbyn early on Sunday to say he had no confidence in his leadership, forcing Mr Corbyn to sack him as shadow foreign secretary.

The party’s crisis deepened when MPs on the centre-left of the party such as Heidi Alexander, Lilian Greenwood and Kerry McCarthy voluntarily followed Mr Benn off the front bench.

Nine shadow cabinet members had resigned when the Star went to press.

Ms Greenwood, who was shadow transport secretary, wrote: “You are a kind, decent and principled colleague, but in my view a new leadership is required to bridge the widening divides in our party.”

Mr Corbyn remained in defiant mood last night, with a spokesman saying: “There will be no resignation of a democratically elected leader with a strong mandate.”

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell took to the airwaves to stress that his closest political ally would not resign and was prepared to fight another leadership election if necessary.

He told Sky: “Jeremy is not going anywhere. He’ll be a candidate if there is an election.

“I’ll chair his campaign like I did last year and I think the rank and file of the Labour Party will re-elect him.

“If there’s going to be a leadership election, let’s go for it. Jeremy will stand and I think he will be re-elected.”

Mr McDonnell described the resignations as “disappointing” but said there were willing and able candidates ready to fill the posts.

And veteran Labour MP Paul Flynn joked: “If all the Blairites resign from the shadow cabinet, who will be left to leak the confidential business to the press?”

Last night Mr Corbyn was looking to move on from the resignations by holding a reshuffle that will see more left-wing MPs take top positions.

No Time For Civil War

by Ben Chacko in Editorial

- RALLY FOR CORBYN OUTSIDE PARLIAMENT TOMORROW AT SIX PM - 200,000 sign petition - Labour tied with Tories in latest opinion poll

by the Editor

LABOUR MPs meeting tomorrow should stop and listen before following a few colleagues who seem determined to drag the party off a cliff.

They should listen to the party’s members, who overwhelmingly elected Jeremy Corbyn leader just 10 months ago and will, all polls suggest, re-elect him just as overwhelmingly if there is another contest.

They should listen to the nearly 200,000 people who have signed a petition declaring their confidence in Mr Corbyn’s leadership since the prospect of a coup was raised.

They should listen to the 12 affiliated trade unions which made it absolutely clear on Friday that now is no time to start a civil war in the party.

And they should listen to the mood of the country.

A majority have just voted in a referendum to leave the European Union. The Prime Minister has resigned.

Even as he squats in No 10, he is a lame duck, with would-be successors sharpening their knives.
The Tories must be jubilant that at this moment of crisis for the government Labour appears ready to tear itself apart.

Those plotting to overthrow Mr Corbyn are using the EU referendum result as an excuse.

He is accused of having failed to throw his all into the campaign to keep Britain in, of being unable to mobilise the Labour vote, of being a liability if an election comes soon.

This is absurd. According to polling data from Lord Ashcroft, Labour voters split 63 per cent for Remain, 37 per cent for Leave on Thursday.

The equivalent figures for Scottish National Party supporters were 64 per cent and 36 per cent — practically identical. Yet no-one says Nicola Sturgeon is incapable of mobilising supporters to vote SNP based on their answers to a completely different question.

The result reflects huge anger at the political elite and at the unaccountable and pro-corporate nature of the EU.

As Unite leader Len McCluskey has pointed out, it beggars belief to claim that the totally uncritical stance of New Labour towards the EU would have been more convincing for angry voters than Mr Corbyn’s more realistic attitude.

It would also do Labour untold damage across Britain if it tells the voters it doesn’t care what they think — they were wrong, and now Labour’s leader must be punished because he couldn’t stop them making the choice they did.

It would be utterly reckless and self-indulgent at a time the country is crying out for leadership — leadership the spiteful, dishonest and deeply divided Conservative Party clearly cannot provide — for the Opposition to spark a leadership contest which will achieve nothing except to paralyse the party for months before reaffirming Mr Corbyn’s mandate.

A Survation poll for the Mail on Sunday released yesterday showed that Labour and the Conservatives are now polling equally at 32 per cent. The idea that Labour is incapable of taking on the Tories at an early general election is nonsense — there is everything to play for.

Most MPs are angry and disappointed at the referendum result. So are millions of people.

But even greater numbers did vote Leave, and Labour must respect that if it is to help chart a new course for Britain.

This means dropping all talk of delaying, ignoring or reversing the verdict of the referendum, and instead setting out policies that address the concerns of working-class communities.

It means rallying behind a leader who has demonstrated an understanding of those concerns throughout his career, campaigning for more investment in public services, more council housing and redistribution of wealth.

It means forcing and fighting an early general election to ensure workers’ rights, public ownership and an industrial strategy for the future are at the heart of our vision for a negotiated exit, while bigotry and racism are shown the door.

As war veteran, health campaigner and Labour stalwart Harry Leslie Smith said yesterday, those calling for Mr Corbyn’s head are putting their personal interests above those of party and country.

They risk crippling Labour for years and giving the Tories a blank cheque to do what they will to the communities who have cried out so loudly for change.

They must be stopped.

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