Labour is still in thrall to identity politics

Appointing David Lammy and Naz Shah to the shadow cabinet shows that Labour is still spectacularly out of touch.

Rakib Ehsan
Columnist

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Topics Brexit Politics UK

If anyone held a glimmer of hope that the end of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership would signal a clean break from the divisive identity politics which has taken hold in the Labour Party, that hope will have been well and truly extinguished by Sir Keir Starmer’s shadow-cabinet appointments.

Last December, Labour crashed to its worst General Election performance since 1935. After the Conservatives dealt a devastating blow to Labour’s so-called red wall, it became clear that one of the main tasks for a new party leader would be to rebuild ties with pro-Brexit, blue-collar communities in post-industrial northern England, the provincial Midlands, and Leave-voting Wales.

Starmer himself is an impediment to this goal. He represents a London constituency which voted 73.3 per cent Remain and he was the chief architect of Labour’s anti-democratic second-referendum policy. During the party leadership contest, Starmer pledged to continue presenting a positive case for freedom of movement after Britain left the EU. In addition to this, Starmer’s well-known legal background will hardly endear him to working-class Eurosceptic voters who were left frustrated by years of legal and judicial obstructionism over Brexit.

Starmer might have attempted to make up for some of these impediments with his shadow cabinet. But the team he has assembled will do him no favours. One of the striking appointments is David Lammy in the role of shadow justice secretary. There is no denying that, on paper, Lammy is suitably credentialed for the role, being a Harvard Law School graduate and former practising barrister. But Lammy is also guilty of the most egregious forms of identitarian race-baiting leftism and anti-Brexit fanaticism.

Last year, Lammy compared the pro-Leave European Research Group (ERG) faction of the Conservative Party to the Nazis and to those who were complicit in the enforcement of Apartheid in South Africa. Exploiting these racist atrocities in order to score cheap points over Brexit was shameful.

Embarrassingly, Lammy has also been responsible for peddling conspiracy theories over national tragedies. After the Grenfell Tower fire in west London, during an interview with Andrew Neil, Lammy suggested that the authorities were under-reporting the number of deaths in the fire, as part of an alleged cover-up. He had no evidence for this claim.

He then proceeded to attack Sir Martin Moore-Bick, the retired Court of Appeal judge appointed to lead the Grenfell inquiry, arguing that a ‘white, upper-middle-class man’ should not have been appointed. He said it was a ‘shame’ that a female or an ethnic-minority judge was not selected to lead the inquiry instead.

But alarmingly, Lammy is by no means Starmer’s worst shadow-cabinet appointment. My area of specialist research is social integration. I strongly believe that appointing Naz Shah as shadow minister for community cohesion will backfire spectacularly.

First, with Labour currently under investigation by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) over allegations of institutionalised anti-Semitism, Shah’s own personal history of sharing anti-Semitic content online is unfortunate.

Secondly, in 2017 Shah liked and shared a tweet which said: ‘Those abused girls in Rotherham and elsewhere just need to shut their mouths. For the good of #diversity!.’ Clearly this tweet demonstrates her unsuitability for a role promoting social cohesion.

The ethnic and religious composition of many grooming gangs threatens to undermine the bonds of social trust and mutual respect between white British and South Asian Muslim communities living within inner-city areas and post-industrial towns across much of England. The fact that Labour would appoint someone to a social-cohesion role who does not take this issue seriously shows just how divorced from reality the party still is.

Starmer’s shadow cabinet appointments – Lammy and Shah in particular – clearly demonstrate Labour’s lack of interest in re-engaging with the working-class communities that were not only abandoned by their former natural party over Brexit, but which also cannot relate to the party’s virtue-signalling over multiculturalism and diversity.

The Labour rank-and-file may be very much in thrall to multicultural ideology, viewing nearly all of society’s issues through the prism of identity politics. But will Starmer’s Labour win back the working-class families of Brexitland who ended their generations-long habit of voting for Labour at the last General Election? I suspect not.

Dr Rakib Ehsan is a research fellow at the Henry Jackson Society. Follow him on Twitter: @rakibehsan.

Picture by: Getty.

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Comments

Jonathan West

3rd May 2020 at 1:49 pm

I believe Lammy and Shah are racialists as they seem to hold views that Race is the key to a persons identity. That disgusting tweet from Shah about the ongoing (yes it’s still ongoing) coordinated child abuse rings across the nation is one of the most despicable things I’ve ever read and she will I am sure go down in infamy for that. When the true horror of what is going on is (and it will) finally be laid bare to the extent it deserves, then I hope she will be pilloried until she crawls back under the rock from where she comes.

Fraser Bailey

22nd April 2020 at 12:49 pm

Correct. Labour is also in thrall to criminals, the EU, public sector unions and various other malign actors. Yet they still remain very popular, with 10 million people voting for them last December.

Vivian Darkbloom

16th April 2020 at 8:01 pm

The Labour Party did amazingly well in the 2019 election: over 10 million votes. This result said something about the inherent qualities of the party but more pertinently showed the good will and fairness of the British – or should that be English – electorate. Labour are important in their championing of minority voices and the election result shows they still have a role to play as a small but effective pressure group. However, they are not viable as a government in waiting. The adoption of North American identity politics has consigned them to the margins; identitarianism has very little traction with UK voters. In addition, the palpable dislike of Britain and British people is not a good look; a successful party must, at least, pretend to like the country and the voters it intends to represent.

This is not healthy for democracy. There is now a huge void which Labour used to occupy. Issues of economic justice, support of working- and lower-middle-class needs and aspirations, secure jobs and wages, decent housing: a bourgeois party with antiquated colonial and patrician attitudes cannot hope to appeal to enough voters to form a viable administration. As a minor parliamentary force they stand in the way of the reform this country needs. The Party no longer represents the working classes and would stand a better chance in a future electoral contest if they rebrand; it’s just daft to call yourselves ‘Labour’ when you despise or patronise the workers. Something like ‘The NHS Party’ or ‘The Minorities Party’ would better reflect their values.

Having said that, my feeling is that the 10 million votes they garnered in 2019 will stand as the apex of their achievement and an inevitable decline beckons thereafter. They’ve abandoned so many sections of society I can’t envisage a way back to mass appeal – the sort of appeal that wins elections. They’ve lost much of the working class; the North; Scotland; straight males; white people; feminists; lesbians; Jewish people; Hindus; Sikhs; those who voted for Brexit; the struggling regions; rural constituencies, etc etc. If my family and friends are bellwethers then the next group to jump ship will be British-Caribbeans.

So David Lammy can have his time in the spotlight but will only be a source of amusement and growing irrelevancy to the majority of the population unless the party changes direction quite radically, which seems as unlikely as a vaccine being developed for the Coronavirus.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 8:54 pm

“They’ve lost much of the working class; the North; Scotland; straight males; white people; feminists; lesbians; Jewish people; Hindus; Sikhs; those who voted for Brexit; the struggling regions; rural constituencies”

They have done no such thing.
Millions of straight males vote for them, the vast majority of their voters are white people, most feminists and lesbians vote for them, as do most Hindus and Sikhs.
As do many in struggling regions.

10 million votes will be seen as a low point in the context of future elections.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 8:56 pm

Many of the groups you named overwhelmingly vote for Labour.

They did at the last election and in all likelihood they will in future elections.

Several you named have never voted Labour anyway.

10 million votes just a few months ago is firm proof that you talk nonsense.

Vivian Darkbloom

16th April 2020 at 9:40 pm

Time will tell Mr. Henly; time will tell. Best wishes.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 10:15 pm

Indeed.

You can’t be drawing conclusions yet.

Andy Dean

16th April 2020 at 9:48 pm

“The Labour Party did amazingly well in the 2019 election..” Indeed, the biggest hiding since 1935 and an 80 seat deficit. Good job they didn’t do amazingly badly.

Lefty logic in action.

Vivian Darkbloom

16th April 2020 at 10:00 pm

Sarcasm. As in “it’s surprising they did so well” or “didn’t they do well?” Do I have to add a wink or a raised eyebrow, eh?

Cedar Grove

19th April 2020 at 9:42 am

I share your sentiments. Unless and until Labour is able to organise a collective response to social injustice and economic privilege, it will be bound to fail, and we will be without representation.

Lammy, not bothering to inform himself of the historical protocol for signalling the election of a new Pope, once publicly chided the BBC for asking “Will it be black or white smoke?” (i.e. is the conclave still undecided, or do we have a pontiff?) He asserted that this was a racist question. Pomposity combined with ignorance doesn’t make for a good look.

Naz Shah endeared herself to Bradford by suggesting that Israel be moved to the USA, so that Muslims could have control of the entire Middle East, not the mere 99.018% of it they currently hold, & by declaring the city “Israeli-free” – the echoes of “Juden-frei ” aren’t my imagination.

In fact, there are now so few Jews left in Bradford that they couldn’t afford to repair their last remaining synagogue. The local Muslim community stepped in to help. Presumably the building will eventually become another mosque, as the Jewish congregation are old people, but that doesn’t detract from the demonstration of goodwill.

Lammy & Shah represent the meanest & most divisive way of conducting race relations, not least because they are teaching people that ethnicity, or religious affiliation, are the only aspects of a person which matter.

Immigrants are certainly an asset to the NHS and we should investigate why BAME workers are apparently more susceptible to Covid-19.

But immigrants are fully represented amongst the users of the NHS, too. Marrying cousins for generations resulted in Bradford’s producing a third of the country’s genetically damaged children.

And men are more susceptible to C-19 than women: we need to put all the information together, and not pre-empt the findings of any enquiry by banging a particular drum so loudly it drowns out everything else.

The current way of approaching politics is infantile, toxic and deeply unintelligent. Fortunately, most people manage to have decent relationships with one another despite that.

John Gaunt

16th April 2020 at 4:02 pm

The appointments are entirely unsurprising, given the membership of both the Labour Party generally and its NEC. However it is very healthy for our democracy that the PLP and its shadow ministers, should accurately represent the Labour Party. People must see them in action and pass judgement. It will be swift and harsh.

Labour will continue to disappoint the majority of British and at the next election will do less well, not better, in the regions that just switched to the Conservative Party in December. They are beyond salvage.

It is time for a patriotic left of centre alternative to the Labour Party to emerge. Such a party is needed to provide a meaningful counter position to the conservatives, particularly to the conservative critique of liberalism. It is no longer offered by Labour in any serious way, and their increasingly ridiculous floundering is becoming a distraction from a politics of consequence.

John Little

16th April 2020 at 2:44 pm

Out of touch is the most forgiving interpretation. Deluded and misguided explains the state of mind of the majority of the party. For a significant minority however malignity and divide and rule is the intention. For the execrable individuals above, fascistic racist supremacism probably defines them.

etidretni noinipo

16th April 2020 at 2:19 pm

Another decade in the political wilderness beckons for Labour! And Bojo must be licking his lips with delight at the sight of the pitiful and out-of-touch bunch that now ostensibly constitute the opposition.

Mor Vir

16th April 2020 at 2:39 pm

No doubt Britain will get the government that it deserves. The main thing now is to Get Scotland independent and Ireland united.

Tiocfaidh ár lá

Cedar Grove

19th April 2020 at 9:45 am

The revenge of the Celts, hey?

Jonathan West

3rd May 2020 at 1:33 pm

Yeah, you’ll all do amazingly well for yourselves I’m sure lol

Stewart Ware

16th April 2020 at 12:51 pm

Perhaps, like God, Starmer moves in mysterious ways. Perhaps he has a longer term plan, in that by letting these two numpties into the shadow cabinet he is allowing them to display their utter unsuitability for their positions. He can then sack them and they can flounce back to the backbenches and mope around for the rest of this parliament.

K Tojo

16th April 2020 at 2:41 pm

“God moves in mysterious ways his wonders to perform” is the complete adage. Don’t know about you but I am not expecting any wonders from Sir Keir. Conspicuous lack of ability has not led to the removal of previous Labour front-benchers.

Lammy and Shah will have been given their jobs because they have support from the NEC and the party membership (Momentum haven’t gone away). That tired old socialist vehicle will continue to trundle along souped up with the new fuel of intersectionality. “Bring us your offended and indignant minorities and we will increase their indignation tenfold” might be an appropriate slogan for this (still) post Blairite party.

Arthur Pewtey

16th April 2020 at 12:42 pm

With Emily Thornberry as shadow international trade secretary we have a full house. It’s going to be hilarious!!

K Tojo

16th April 2020 at 12:27 pm

Labour did not suffer a serious enough defeat at the last election. They deserved much worse. Too many people voted for them overall and as a result they managed to keep the socialist delusion on life-support.

To Labour’s rescue, like an act of God, came COVID-19. “Our NHS”, that great socialist project Labour claim ownership of, is now surrounded by a protective auro of noble sacrifice. The fact that Germany, with its localised care system is better equiped, better funded, more efficient, safer and more successful than Britain’s nationalised money pit will get scant consideration.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 4:02 pm

“Too many people voted for them overall”

That’s called democracy.

And the NHS wouldn’t be so revered of late if the Tories hadn’t jumped aboard the “we love the NHS” bandwagon before the last election. The great socialist project is secure because not even the Tories dare stand against it.

Again, because of democracy.

John Gaunt

16th April 2020 at 4:07 pm

I don’t think people will confuse the actions of doctors and nurses, whom they respect (rightly), with any politician, left or right, who claims credit for the NHS. Our hospitals are doing great work, but I suspect most realise that this is not necessarily a consequence of the NHS as an idea, but rather the dedication of its personnel, who can only work in the NHS as there is no alternative provider.

Apocalyptic Reindeer

16th April 2020 at 11:47 am

“The ethnic and religious composition of many grooming gangs threatens to undermine the bonds of social trust and mutual respect between white British and South Asian Muslim communities..”

What bonds are these then?

vera Newman

16th April 2020 at 11:26 am

Thousand Of the Peoples are Died From Corona Virus…On The Other Hand Thousand Peoples Are Died By Poorness Its Means Poorness is More Dangerous As Compare to Corona Virus…… Read more

fret slider

16th April 2020 at 10:52 am

For a former barrister, Lammy seems pretty unlearned:

The BBC tweeted a news item about the chimney over the Sistine Chapel captioned:
“Will smoke be black or white?”
Within seconds Lammy tweeted: “This tweet from the BBC is crass and unnecessary. Do we really need silly innuendo about the race of the next Pope?”

As for Shah. Not even an apology. A disgraceful excuse for a human being.

Starmer is, on balance, even worse than Comrade Cob

a watson

16th April 2020 at 10:42 am

How they despise the white working class.

a watson

16th April 2020 at 10:51 am

All paid large salaries and perks – on us.

Danny Rees

16th April 2020 at 3:29 pm

Which party would you say is all for the white working class?

Gordon Le Gopher

16th April 2020 at 5:57 pm

They don’t need to be “for” the white working class. Just not hating them is a good start.

Highland Fleet Lute

16th April 2020 at 9:55 am

“The guy has a sense of humour, I like it.”

I’m afraid “arch-perverse” don’t even do it.

John Reic

16th April 2020 at 9:55 am

the worse thing is pre Momentum taking over his seat all be it the predecessors were there before,Lammy was against ID politics but changed his tune when he was worried of deselection

Neil John

16th April 2020 at 9:24 am

“Harvard law school” graduate, so taught the ‘merican version of division and race-hating by left whinge ‘academics’ so not at all suitable for the role…

Melissa Jackson

16th April 2020 at 9:56 am

Hey at least Lammy has a vaguely appropriate CV for the role, even if he’s clearly an impediment to… Everything. But he does have the theoretical chops, you know?

Compared to Naz Shah and Jess Phillips, whose entire qualifications are that they just don’t shut up about their areas of responsibility.

Lammy is awful, and as you correctly identified brought the American approach to race politics back to the UK. One day he will have to answer to the Black British community for that. But at least that seems to be a genuine conviction on his part.

Neil John

16th April 2020 at 4:28 pm

One can only hope your right about the Black British community, but I suspect the ‘merican Demonrat method of keep ’em dumb and dependent appeals not just to Lammy and his ilk, but a lot of others in the Labour membership middle classes. That and all humans natural laziness, only fools and horses work…

Highland Fleet Lute

16th April 2020 at 9:02 am

Dumb Ass: David Lammy on Celebrity Mastermind…

Q: What was the married name of Marie and Pierre who won the Nobel Prize for physics in 1903 for their research into radiation?

A: Antoinette

Q: Who succeeded Henry VIII?

A: Henry VII

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsR4Nx-ELgc

Mor Vir

16th April 2020 at 9:13 am

The guy has a sense of humour, I like it.

Off the cuff, thinking creatively on his feet, good stuff.

Very human, very amusing. Well grasps the situation of celeb MM.

Well done Lammy, quite endearing.

Highland Fleet Lute

16th April 2020 at 9:18 am

The Labour Party is a conferedacy of dunces, and like any confederacy of dunces, The Labour Party loves mediocrity and despises talent, which as we saw in the last election, has its own special rewards.

Mor Vir

16th April 2020 at 9:32 am

Hopefully British politics will not be reduced to open rudeness as well as gossip. That would be a very sad and unfair reflection on the British people.

Both TP and LP are all in favour of ‘talent’, which is why they are fully committed to a post-Brexit expansion of trade with a correlate influx of migrant workers. Boris has made clear that he wants ‘the brightest and the best’ to make their way to the UK.

But he is no snob, he recognises that the UK economy is not a predominantly high-skill economy, and indeed none is. It is a ‘mature’ service-based economy that needs the full range of skills in order to function. Boris has made clear that as many low and medium skilled workers will be welcome to the UK as the economy can absorb.

Britain is not about snobbery, it is a growth-based capitalist system that welcomes the full range of talents from people whatever their origins. Both TP and LP understand that, and there is no need for partisan rudeness and gossip about politicians who are simply doing their job within the capitalist state.

Graham Southern

16th April 2020 at 10:58 am

So a barrister who went to Harvard has never heard of Marie Curie, has only the vaguest notion of Marie Antoinette as someone fond of cake, has no knowledge of English history and can’t count.
Diversity in action.

Mor Vir

16th April 2020 at 8:59 am

2017 GE shows that people do not care about this sort of tittle-tattle. Any dynamism TP has found since Cameron is entirely due to UKIP. Without Brexit, TP would be just another tired, aimless, zombie western government with a morbid economy. UKIP is gone now. Hopefully sp will get back to serious analysis rather than gossip. LP’s big mistake was to oppose Brexit.

Starmer is welcome to campaign for a standalone freedom of movement with EU countries, and he will likely get some support on that. TP has every intention of continuing with migration anyway, so we might as well personally benefit by access to other countries.

As Boris points out, ‘taking back control’ of migration certainly does not mean an end of it, which was one of those LOL moments. A new points-based system allows the capitalist state to get all of the migrant workers that it wants, as many as the economy can assimilate. Indeed that is the entire point of a points-based system.

If post-Brexit trade deals allow for an expansion of trade, as Brexiteers hope, then many more workers will be needed to man the economy and they will be made up of migrant workers. The more successful the expansion of trade, the more migrant workers will be needed. The two are entirely correlate. Especially as Britain terminally has near zero productivity growth, any rise in GDP will be entirely dependent on demographic expansion.

So, even those Brexiteers who are het up about migrants will likely concede that we may as well benefit from free movement with the EU. The British capitalist state will simply get its migrants from outside of Europe, and indeed non-EU migration into the UK is at records levels as EU migration shrinks. Perhaps even they will desist from cutting off their noses to spite their faces.

UK is getting all the migrant workers it needs, many more if Brexit is a success and leads to an expansion of trade. So everyone might as well agree with Starmer that we might as well keep our free movement with the EU. The rational thing, whatever the range of politics might be, is to support Stamer in that policy. Well done Starmer, that is a rational, sensible start that should appeal to a very wide spectrum of support.

Andy Dean

16th April 2020 at 9:44 pm

Boy you’re thick.

Jonathan West

3rd May 2020 at 2:13 pm

With AI and robotics around the corner a points based system is the only to go. Virtual Globalisation is where the world is moving, the days of immigrants moving anyplace they’ve not been preselected for through a job offer are gone & that is the right thing

Gordon Le Gopher

16th April 2020 at 8:44 am

Is that the same Lammy that wants Comic Relief to show more wealthy black kids on TV so that we don’t think they’re poor and so stop sending money?

Parhaps Lammy could go on TV and admit what a complete loon he is so people stop voting for him.

Gordon Le Gopher

16th April 2020 at 8:49 am

Maybe the whole shadow cabinet can go on the next Comic Relief and tell us how they plan on getting back in touch with the British public. It’ll be friggin hilarious

Dominic Straiton

16th April 2020 at 8:23 am

David “Marie Antoinette” Lammy. The gift that keeps on giving. Cant wait for his first car crash interview.

Kirth Gersen

16th April 2020 at 7:31 am

Something happened to Lammy in the last few years, it’s like some mid-life crisis where he latched onto Brexit and basically went a bit Twitter-mad. This is an undeniably clever capable guy who used to seem a very sensible MP who then started out spouting utter bollocks. Hopefully his new role will provide him with a reason to get off Twitter and start talking sense as a shadow minister instead of engaging in the Lammy Show.

As for Naz Shah, she made some mistakes but maybe she can redeem that in her new role and in some ways she is ideally placed to try to bridge ethnic and religious tensions in some Northern towns as she comes from there and understands the milieu. Give her a chance.

steve moxon

16th April 2020 at 7:50 am

?!
They are both ‘identity politics’ totalitarians who literally hate ordinary people and are utterly irredeemable, as is Liebore, of course.
Appointing these two obscenities is the biggest two fingers Kiera could stick to the masses — ‘the workers’, as it were.
As it was, this destroyer of the very basis of justice (innocent until proven guilty) comes across as gay.
Just what Libeore needs to appeal to us up north: two black actual racists and a seeming-gay metropolitan tos**r.

Daniel Goldstein

16th April 2020 at 12:48 pm

To suggest that Starmer “appears gay” is ignorant and offensive. The idea that the north only wants butch alpha males as leaders is risible.

steve moxon

16th April 2020 at 6:18 pm

Guffaw! What’s offensive and ignorant is your comment. ‘Identity politics’ totalitarian or what?
With a voice like he puts on, it IS how he is perceived up here in the north, whether you like it or not

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 8:49 pm

Excactly what does Starmer being perceived as gay by a few loons have to do with anything Steve?

Only someone obsessed with identity politics cares about that.
You’re so out of touch Steve.

Stef Steer

16th April 2020 at 7:57 am

I just think Lammy and Shah have always been racists and have been given permission in the last few years to voice it publicly. Starmer himself damaged the justice system and was happy to endorse Watson’s witch hunt. The lot of them reek of Euro connections and money which the Labour party has been in thrall to since at least 1990.

I guess they think its a vote winner or maybe they just don’t care anymore. If its the latter its a sign that they really do believe democracy is irrelevant.

Anthony Pearson

16th April 2020 at 3:00 pm

When Lammy entered parliament in 2000 he was clearly New Labour and the ‘diversity’ candidate. Sometimes (but not always) such candidates can suffer from positive discrimination overreach and produce low quality high flyers. Not so with Lammy who appeared thoughful, often taken his time with questions and never straying from the Labour line. Being continually touted and acclaimed increases one’s opinion of oneself and no doubt Lammy took it all in. Mayor of London or even PM were common predictions. Then came the disastrous performance as a junior minister around the Mental Capacity Bill. In full public view at the despatch box he failed. Admonished by the Deputy Speaker and torn apart by the media where ‘completely out of his depth’ was probably the kindest criticism. The bubble burst and the descent into big mouth politics began. Having realised his top level career is over he resorts to being famous for being fatuous. Relying on his earlier Harvard/barrister credentials to get him into low level positions he continues in this vein to this day with previously repressed prejudices now openly revealed.

Jonathan West

3rd May 2020 at 1:56 pm

It makes my day when someone absolutely nails it like you have. Completely spot on.

Cedar Grove

19th April 2020 at 9:57 am

I think you’ll find she deepened the tensions between ethnic communities in the north, by her de-contextualised re-tweeting of an originally satiric comment, that multiply raped & trafficked white teenagers should shut up for the sake of diversity.

In contrast, Nazir Afzal, like the MP Anne Cryer, before the scandal was public knowledge, had done his best to persuade “community elders” to speak out against the abuse, and stop it. Once the scale of the problem became known, he was wholehearted in deploring it.

Those who wish to believe Shah is well-intentioned are, unfortunately, deluded. She plays to the lowest instincts.

Brandy Cluster

16th April 2020 at 7:23 am

Labor is in thrall to this because it doesn’t have any other shots in the locker. I saw this man, David Lammy, on a panel debate with Lionel Shriver from last year and he was absolutely appalling. Full of resentment and anger and unwilling to dispense with an atom of it. Just dreadful.

Kirth Gersen

16th April 2020 at 7:32 am

This is what I mean, Lammy was not always like this. Not sure what has happened to make him act in this way but I agree it’s been pretty appalling.

Mark Houghton

16th April 2020 at 6:56 am

Don’t forget lovely Jess Phillips, the Shadow Minister for Domestic Violence and Safeguarding. We all know that Jess will take all issues of domestic violence seriously, except when it’s men on the receiving end because that’s just a laugh, right?

Philip Humphrey

16th April 2020 at 7:31 am

Quite. The woman who laughed and sneered at International Men’s Day, clearly she doesn’t consider men’s issues worth discussing. And she’s far from the only one in the Labour ranks. That’s hardly going to win them men’s vote, and may well also lose them many women’s votes.

steve moxon

16th April 2020 at 7:53 am

She’ll actually lose them more women’s votes than men. The majority of women are not taken in by her nonsense in the slightest.
She’s actually the worst appointment of the lot, and that’s saying something.

Rikhard Wright

16th April 2020 at 4:05 am

Labour is, indeed, out of touch, but I don’t think it’s as coincidental as that phrase implies.
Labour was infiltrated quite some time ago, and the infiltrators have an agenda which is not a consequence of sloppiness or incompetence, but “a feature, working as planned”.
If normal Labour voters haven’t noticed this, then there is probably no hope for the party as an “opposition” party.

Danny Rees

16th April 2020 at 2:17 am

“Secondly, in 2017 Shah liked and shared a tweet which said: ‘Those abused girls in Rotherham and elsewhere just need to shut their mouths. For the good of #diversity!.’ Clearly this tweet demonstrates her unsuitability for a role promoting social cohesion. ”

Shah shared this tweet from a parody account of Owen Jones. The intention of the parody account’s tweet was to signal a belief that anyone who thinks racial diversity in white majority countries is not such a bad thing is somehow cool with child abuse.

The fact that she retweeted it was very ill advised. Even if she does not sympathise with the sentiment with the parody account’s original tweet the fact she did not retweet without even making a mocking comment about the parody account’s intentions of the tweet shows her to be a brainless idiot.

Graham Southern

16th April 2020 at 10:31 am

The reason why the retweet is an issue is that it is merely a more explicit (or honest) statement of what she clearly believes.

Danny Rees

16th April 2020 at 10:36 am

Indeed without retweeting it with any kind of comment it comes across that way.

I doubt she actually believes it but I guess that’s an irrelevance in many people’s eyes as they have already made their mind up that Labour and anyone attached to them thinks such an awful thing.

Graham Southern

16th April 2020 at 10:53 am

Danny, if I retweeted something in an ironic way and everyone took it seriously, I would immediately and repeatedly state that this was the case and that I was absolutely opposed to the sentiments expressed.

Danny Rees

16th April 2020 at 3:34 pm

Indeed I would too

Daniel Goldstein

16th April 2020 at 1:28 am

Don’t forget the new “shadow minister for faiths”…!

Daniel Goldstein

16th April 2020 at 1:29 am

This article hits the nail on the head otherwise. Lammy will probably get into trouble at some point when he makes an outlandish comment.

Jim Lawrie

16th April 2020 at 1:15 am

One explanation for this pair inclusion is that Labour has decided to cling to the votes it held onto in the last General Election and has given up on winning back its traditional vote. Or thinks that like naughty children they will come home when it starts to get dark.

42%, 24%, 27%, 19% in the last 4 General Elections in Scotland has told them nothing.

17%, 15%, 29%, 25% are the numbers for The Conservatives.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 1:30 am

The Conservatives barely advancing in Scotland then, despite a large amount of Labour voters switching away.

It seems remarkable how people on the right are still in denial about the popularity of the SNP.

brent mckeon

16th April 2020 at 10:38 am

You miss the important point about Scotland. Labour has gone to zero MP’s and the Conservatives from zero to a few. Got nothing to do with SNP huge support. I have Sottish family who swear when I talk about Scottish independence but dislike the Tories and Labour. SNP is a safe haven for dissent without huge change, proven by them losing two independence votes.

Jim Lawrie

16th April 2020 at 11:51 am

Because you refuse to address the decline of your, you resort to whataboutery.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 3:58 pm

The Conservatives for decades had far more than zero MPs in Scotland. In fact they had far more than they do now.

It’s easy to draw the conclusions you want when you’re selective with the data.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 3:58 pm

“you refuse to address the decline of your”

My….. what Jim?
Do tell.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 12:48 am

I think what’s more divorced from reality is acting like one retweet from several years ago is somehow relevant or important in any way.

Sure, it’s the kind of think that right wingers on Twitter and Breitbart like to rant about, but most people don’t care for such offence archaeology.

steve moxon

16th April 2020 at 7:56 am

Guffaw!
It must be the single most self-damaging social media post anyone has made since internet social media began.
Her attitude towards the Rotherham scandal almost defines Liebore for many.

Danny Rees

16th April 2020 at 3:32 pm

It was hugely damaging. She retweeted a parody account of a Guardian journalist. If she intended to retweet it with the intention of showing her followers what a prat the person behind the account is that was unclear because she retweeted it without a comment. She must have realised it was a parody but that many would believe it to be the real Guardian journalist. She has the brains of a nat.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 3:54 pm

Only someone spectacularly out of touch (ie up their own backside) could write the nonsense you just did Steve.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 3:59 pm

I don’t think Steve is aware that what she retweeted as a parody.

KATHLEEN CARR

16th April 2020 at 4:17 pm

I found the necklaces and matches remark more worrying . We already know Labour will not offend its BAME voters who apparently share the same views as these two MPs-which is why they are popular with their constituents.

steve moxon

16th April 2020 at 6:21 pm

Wha hae? Jonny hen-pecked-by-his-ideology telling anybody else they’re out of touch, when he isn’t even within earth orbit.

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 8:46 pm

Steve is too out of touch for any political party.

He exists in another universe.

Hence why you talk such nonsense Steve.

Jonathan Marshall

16th April 2020 at 9:59 am

I take it that you therefore disapprove of the way Unions and Labour MPs attacked Toby Young and helped to hound him out of his job at the Office of Students in 2018 over various remarks he made on social media in 2012?

Jonnie Henly

16th April 2020 at 3:54 pm

We know that Spiked did.

I wonder why they have changed their tune on this?

Jonathan Marshall

16th April 2020 at 11:56 pm

Please answer the question.

Jonnie Henly

18th April 2020 at 2:06 am

Toby Young wasn’t forced to resign because of what he wrote on social media so the question is pointless.

Jonathan Marshall

18th April 2020 at 2:09 pm

If you believe that, little Jonnie, you’ll believe anything.
You really are in denial about anything the Left does wrong, aren’t you?

Graham Southern

16th April 2020 at 10:35 am

Perhaps she has changed her mind. I’m sure Jonnie can point us to her loud, categorical statements that Muslim acceptance of rape in the name of Allah must be rooted out from her community.

Cedar Grove

19th April 2020 at 10:01 am

It isn’t a minor, long-ago “offence”. It’s a genuine representation of how she feels. You clearly don’t watch British Muslim TV.

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Deplorables — a spiked film