Sunday, 15 February 2015

Observer letter on need to show more support for Labour

Your "In Focus" feature pointed out that the Tories and Tory press are more worried than their "relentless anti-Miliband tirades suggest", with the previous day`s Times questioning why Cameron`s party was not ahead in the polls.(Pilloried by the press, beaten up by business and beset by inner turmoil. How come Labour leads in the polls?08/02/15) Yet the Observer, presumably part of the 15% "of the press" not "behind the Tories", repeatedly has not only questioned why Labour leads in the polls, but highlighted divisions, Blairite disloyalty and policy confusion. John Prescott was criticised for describing Blairite has-beens as "Tory collaborators", so, with only a few months to the election, isn`t it time the only remotely left-wing quality Sunday newspaper started working for an end to this most callous of Tory-dominated governments?
    Why not focus on the much-vaunted "long-term economic plan" of the Tories and question its very existence, illustrate how many targets have been missed, and point out  that this government has borrowed £157.5bn in five years, whilst Labour borrowed £142.7bn in its thirteen years in office? Then there`s the issue of tax avoidance, which despite all the government rhetoric about "coffee smelling" and moral repugnance, has continued to rise, largely unabated, and hardly surprisingly in view of the huge job cuts at HMRC and the continued involvement of the Big 4 accounting firms in tax legislation. Perhaps, too, Miliband could find an ally in the Observer over his supposedly anti-business stance? Why shouldn`t the leader of the Labour party get angry over businesses when so many low paid workers have to rely on benefits to survive, whilst the CEOs of the FTSE 100 firms typically earn 143 times the amount paid to their average worker, and still complain about the level of corporation tax which is 5% lower than in any of the G7 countries? The angrier the better!
    In fairness, Will Hutton has frequently reminded readers of the UK`s abject 28th position out of 34 so-called developed nations in the equality league table, but unless the paper takes a more obviously pro-Labour position, it could be assisting in another five years of government by a party intent on more privatisation, increased inequality and decreased social mobility.


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