Saturday, June 21, 2008

Fragments of Labour

An interesting feature of the Bassett book is that some of the most insightful commentary on Lange is quoted (with attribution of course!) from Bruce Jesson. In concluding the chapter in which Lange resigns as Prime Minister, Bassett's final summary of his leadership is a quotation from Jesson.

He left behind him a party [now] publicly united, but still fundamentally riven on matters of economic and social policy.

After Helen Clark's long leadership of the Labour party it is claimed that some degree of true unity has been achieved in Labour after the wreckage of 1990.

The true test of that will come after the seemingly inevitable election loss later this year. In the short term I am not terribly hopeful. Like the Liberal opposition in Australia I think we will see a significant period of public listlessness and private blood-letting.

But a decent term in Opposition is the time for a political party to work out what it stands for and what it wants to achieve in Government. Young people in Labour should be thinking hard about that right now.

1 comment:

Oliver Woods said...

That's very, very interesting that Basset is quoting Jesson. Cheers for posting that acutally - that's probably enough to swing me to read the book.

And agreed about the blood letting that will happen in the opposition period. Having been involved in the party until last year, I think a lot of it will be more personal rather than political - the vast majority of people with strong political convictions to the left or right (within the party) had appeared to have dissolved by the mid 2000's.

Anyway, keep up the blogging mate! Will link you from both my blogs.

Oliver Woods