National anti-cuts coalition launches (with letter to the editor)

4 08 2010

Tony Benn. Son strangely quiet

While the Labour leadership ‘race’ trundles on towards nowhere in particular, a broad campaign has been launched promising active resistance to the cuts agenda.

As with all political initiatives these days, the Coalition of Resistance is starting with a letter to a newspaper – the Guardian, inevitably – signed by Tony Benn and 73 others.

The letter lists the arguments against the cuts – if you don’t know them, read the letter here – but of perhaps greater is the list of alternatives to the cuts agenda:

‘An alternative budget would place the banks under democratic control, and raise revenue by increasing tax for the rich, plugging tax loopholes, withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, abolishing the nuclear “deterrent” by cancelling the Trident replacement.

Nothing too surprising in that list – except that the commitment to placing the banks under democratic control is unexpectedly strident. It’s all lacking in detail, of course, but the letter commits the campaign to ‘develop and support an alternative programme for economic and social recovery’, so all in the goodness of time, one suspects.

Also, the commitment to scrapping Trident might explain why there are no TUC officials among the list of signatories – I don’t know if the TUC was approached (it would be odd if it wasn’t), but unlike individual unions like the RMT, the TUC is unlikely to support proposals that will cost defence industry jobs (and send the defence industry unions into uproar).

No Labour leadership candidates on there*. Now there’s a shock.

The Coalition of Resistance will be kicking off with an organising meeting (I suspect it’ll be less dry than it sounds) on 27th November at the Camden Centre in London. Not sure why they’ve timed it a month after the spending review, but we’ll assume there’s a good reason.

In any case, good luck to them – and not before time.

*UPDATE: Diane Abbott has now signed up to the campaign. Good.




2 responses

6 08 2010

Maybe the timing of the meeting is to allow the full impact to sink in and for public anger to mount to fever pitch.

6 08 2010

Fair shout.

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