Blairities plan “Purple Book”


2:21 pm - April 19th 2011

by Don Paskini    


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Eighteen days too late, the Blairite “Progress” group has announced their intention to spend Lord Sainsbury’s money on publishing a new pamphlet in September called the “Purple Book”, which aims to emulate the success of the Lib Dem “Orange Book”.

Contributions will come from Alan Milburn, Liam Byrne, Tessa Jowell, Paul “the Thinker” Richards, Tristram Hunt and a range of other credible and exciting activists who have hitherto been denied the media platforms to put forward their fascinating ideas.

Those discussing the project hope that they may in future be known as the Purple Book group rather than Blairites, and apparently look forward to the possibility of a Purple/Orange coalition based around the “liberal centre” rather than the social democratic Left.

The name “Purple Book” was coined because “Purple was the colour of new Labour,” says one of those involved. “It’s what you get if you combine red and blue. It symbolises the need to stay on the centre ground.”

The pamphlet will include essays on the economy, the role of the State, public service reform, welfare, crime, the family and social mobility. The overarching theme will be the need to move away from reliance on a big State and redistribute power to individuals and communities.

The announcement of this new pamphlet has already given members of the “Purple Book Group” the opportunity to brief journalists from the Times anonymously about how useless they think Ed Miliband is, which is a really helpful thing to do just over two weeks before the local elections.

A few years ago, these guys were the dominant faction in a party which won successive landslide elections. Now they are reduced to using handouts from multi millionaires to try to follow in the footsteps of right wing Liberal Democrats. It would take a heart of stone not to laugh.

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Don Paskini is deputy-editor of LC. He also blogs at donpaskini. He is on twitter as @donpaskini
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Reader comments


1. shop steward

Laugh, by all means, but we mustn’t take our eyes off the ball. These traitorous vermin must be hunted down and dealt with as savagely as the trots were during the 80s/90s, if not more so.

“I know – we’ve got the two other main parties tied to each other in coalition, deeply unpopular and becoming more so, pursuing more and more unpopular policies, so the obvious thing is to try and ape them and copy their ideas.” Fucking political cretins.

shop steward, the Trots they’re those people who went off to be business men with villas in spain, come to think of it the Fact the tories were going out of their way to get Hutton and Milburn to write reports on what polices should be used, they are similar. If purnell and co are expelled it’s inportant that trots don;t reinfultrate now too.

Inclined to agree. We don’t know what it’s going to say yet, but the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. I fear, therefore, that Blairites will miss the key lesson of Blairism – that parties need to adapt to changing times, and learn from past failures and successes.

Interesting that today’s briefing on it has included some Ed Miliband supporters (Reeves, Glasman) and some people who, while broadly Blairite, have been known to have an orginal idea (Diamond); I wonder to what extent they were in from the start, and to what extent some panicked phone calls took place yesterday afternoon?

On the timing, and the objectionable use of spin against Ed to gather publicity for it when we’re about to fight local elections up and down the country – spot on, but hardly a new activity for Blairites, that, is it, recalling the 2009 “coup”.

A few years ago, these guys were the dominant faction in a party which won successive landslide elections. Now they are reduced to using handouts from multi millionaires to try to follow in the footsteps of right wing Liberal Democrats. It would take a heart of stone not to laugh.

Hmmm. Don, are you sure that that reads as you intended? That first sentence may be poigniant, but surely it is Labour, not the Purple Bookers (that sounds like some sort of rhyming slang to me – although purple is notoriously difficult to rhyme) for whom perhaps one should be shedding the tears.

Bluntly, their ideology won elections. The economic policies which the current Labour leadership helped develop and promote lost the last election. So to write them off as the losers in all of this might be a bit silly?

Nice to see internal tribalism alive and kicking in the Labour party. With a bit of luck it’ll be another 13 years before they’re electable again.

6. Arthur Seaton

“The name “Purple Book” was coined because “Purple was the colour of new Labour,” says one of those involved. “It’s what you get if you combine red and blue. It symbolises the need to stay on the centre ground.””

Its also the colour of royalty/monarchy, and penises. Apt.

“Its also the colour of royalty/monarchy, and penises. Apt.”

Also the colour of the Yes campaign and of the suffragettes.

Thankyou for that, Don. That’s made my afternoon.

This must be a parody.

Nope, clicked on the links, looks real.

Don, oh Don, what the hell is going on with these goons?

Is this is a parody? Or what?

11. Planeshift

“Bluntly, their ideology won elections”

Until 2003.

Let them do it – that way they’ll be defined from without of the Labour grassroots. Today, the notion that Blair is good because he was electable can be found from the Brownite Young Fabians to Progress; they’re almost indistinguishable.

(That’s not to say the Fabian Society aren’t on the social democratic Left in spirit, or that Fabian socialism is a meaningless phrase, but rather the society seems to be wildly alive with boring, centrist entryists [centryists if you will]).

Edward Miliband: “I thank the Prime Minister for that answer and for undertaking to keep the House informed. He has our full support on the issue.

Let me turn to the issue of benefits and say to the Prime Minister that we will work with him on his reforms to disability living allowance and to sickness benefits, because they are important reforms and they need to be done. On child benefit, though, I think that those on his own Benches and the country at large do have concerns. May I ask him, first, how many families where one parent stays at home will be affected by the changes that he has proposed to child benefit?”

Throwing the sick and the disabled to the wolves (the Tories) to pander to the Daily Mail and the Sun, nice work “Red Ed”.

Yep they’re still New Labour and as soon as they get in power again they will be grovelling before the right-wing hate newspapers again.

This sounds like nothing more than Blairites trying to move even further away from Labour’s supposed core vote. More cosying up to big corporations and banks, more shafting of the poor, sick and disabled, more privatisation, more wars, etc.

I want Labour to stand up for the weak, the poor, the working class and anyone else who currently has no voice in UK politics. Why can’t Labour just bloody be Labour?

I think I’ll pass.

God it is like the zombie that won’t die. The Blairites should shut the fuck up since we now have the smoking gun emails regarding the oil interests over Iraq.

The Dirty fucking hippies said it was all about oil, and they have been proved right again. Blair and his barmy band of followers should join the tory party. Nobody is interested in the idiot ideas.

Oh come on, Don. They have some ideas they want to promote, and a view of the future direction of the party. Especially at a time when, on policy, the entire Labour party is basically out to lunch, is this really the right response to their trying to stoke up a debate?

“The announcement of this new pamphlet has already given members of the “Purple Book Group” the opportunity to brief journalists from the Times anonymously about how useless they think Ed Miliband is, which is a really helpful thing to do just over two weeks before the local elections.”

I assume you are talking about this: “Ed’s not doing badly enough for us to get rid of him but he’s not doing well enough to win power.” But that’s attributed to a ‘senior MP’, not someone connected with the book. Which is not to say the MP in question *isn’t* connected with the book, but only that Sylvester may have mischievously spliced in a quote that was obtained elsewhere, in to add some spice to the article (notice that the quote is immediately preceded by another that Sylvester obtained ‘some weeks ago’).

“Now they are reduced to using handouts from multi millionaires”

I don’t think you are going to persuade many people that Labour is in a more enviable position now that multi-millionaires no longer want to find the party Don.

I’m planning a “Blue Book”. It reads:

“Fuck off.”

Blairites are still brown nosing Murdoch.

And the latest from Murdoch is this,,,,,,,,

“The small-town newspapers in New York’s Hudson Valley that Fox News chief Roger Ailes owns with his wife Elizabeth are in a staff revolt after employees caught Ailes spying on them with News Corp. security goons. ”

News International seems to love spying on people. And Blair wants to suck up to these shysters.

Who cares anymore it’s three parties fighting to be the Tory party, bugger it we may as well vote Tory.

johnPReid

shop steward, the Trots they’re those people who went off to be business men with villas in spain, come to think of it the Fact the tories were going out of their way to get Hutton and Milburn to write reports on what polices should be used, they are similar. If purnell and co are expelled it’s inportant that trots don;t reinfultrate now too

God John you should be jumping up and down it’s what you wanted Blair back and your nice newer Tory/ Labour party

As a social and economic liberal I resent being associated with Blairites. They presided over one of the most authoritarian governments of the modern age, and their economic approach was aimed at pleasing large corporations rather than genuinely fostering free enterprise (a disinction missed by many socialists, but a real one: the fact that they weren’t socialist certainly doesn’t make them free-market liberals).

They gave up on socialism and social democracy, but not on the expansion of the state’s power over the inividual that socialism wass once invoked to justify.

Before and especially after 2003, they have had nothing but scorn for liberals. To suggest that I would somehow want to be associated with that tendency is wholly wrong. They essentially formed and continue to form a faction that can be called “Cunts”.

22. Charlieman

OP, Don: “…which aims to emulate the success of the Lib Dem “Orange Book”.”

I cannot determine whether that remark was intended ironically.

The Lib Dem Orange Book was a kick up the back side to Liberals with a big L. The LibDems had drifted too much towards faith in state solutions and required a counter kick. To think about non-state solutions, fair solutions.

I have not read the “Purple Book” so I can only speculate. For it to be worthwhile, the authors need to have booted statism aside.

Excuse me, but I have to go and be sick!

Robert.

I look back at some of the Things I was defending I didn’t really believe in at the recent election and would come up with things about ‘if your against 42 days your as Bad as The loony left of Militant breaking the law by beating up teachers’ or Knowing that Blair lied about Iraq, but instead I would go on about Thatcher saying “the NHS is safe in our hands only” or ‘the Belgrano was sailing towards the Falklands!” Just becuase I Didn’t want the Tories in, So I could say to the Tories after the Election when they didn’t win and felt that they deserved too, Now you know how we felt in 1992 when we felt we deserved to win then. I recall some Alternative Comedian Left wingers who’d Left Labour when Blair come along saying they wanted to see New Labour get less votes in 2010 than in 1983 so they could say that New labour was less popular than when they had their go in 1983 ,But they forgot to point out was that The Gaitskellites who didn’t agree with the 1983 manifesto still stood by Foot yet the Bennite former members were’nt backing labour last year,

I would probably Blog More comments on Diane Abbott ,Tony Benn and Ken livinstone saying “Trotky, Brevhnev Lenin didn’t kill anyone it was all Stalin” and “Chairman Mao did more good than Harm” , than I would Blog that Nick griffin had once said “the Holocaust never Happened”, as felt Labour had to get it’s on act together before we criticised The BNP.

SO when we did better than last year than the 1983 manifesto, it was a message to the Thatcherites they’d been rejected 4 times and that the Bennites in seeking revenge for Labour going against what they stood for had failed as we still did better than when they had their go in 1983

I probably did join the Police because I was anti the police as I felt they were the enemy and then I realised it was the Protesters who didn’t really beleive in what they were saying and were spouting rubbish about the Police being fascists and it was them trying to stifle democracy who were the real fascists and that we should be gratefull that we live in a democracy, I know a Black P.C who was on the rioters side at Broadwater farm felt the same, and that a Inspector from Newham who was on the rioters side at the Poll tax riot have different views, now that Black P.C looks back with Embaressment and the Inspector feels he was still justified in Rioting as the tax was unfair

Maybe the Black P.C and the Inspector from Newham are guided by the fact that the Public were’nt appaled by the Poll tax riot as Thatcher couldn’t use it to her advantage to create sympathy for those agaisnt her, the Way she did with Braodwater farm as Unlike the Brixton riot where the public had sympathy for the rioters by the time of The Farm riot ,White Britain turned it’s back on the way the rioters , when they felt threy were badly handled in the weeks afterwards, as Many Black youths were gathered up at gun point in the days after the Riot at gun point and intrviewed without solicitors present,

Al,l though my views on Palestine and Israel have probably gone nearly 180 degress in the last 5 years, I would’nt ay that I ever looked at one thing form one way so I saw what I wanted to see, when I look at Jody Mcintyre and Laurie Penny Now an feel so embaressed for them I think to myself will they look back in 10 years and be so embaressed that they think reporting something from such a narrow objective that the criticism they get now is nothing to what they will get when they realise the real world and not the Pretend Working class poor opressed Minorites they claim to be and that Just because there’s cuts and that historically clashes have took place with the police at Demo’s by comparing themselves to those who suffered police opression in Countires where there wasn’t the vote, they’ll look back and see that they casued a trouble that they won’t be able to shake off, It maybe fashionally historical for The Brixton riots to be looked back on as A Black struggle, but the Country had symapthy for the Rioters at the Time, the Country never had sympathy for the IRA and no matter how much rewriting of History they never will, a Country as Liberal as it was then is Now, and the lack of Sympathy the Country has shown to the Blac Bloc or Students who threw fire extinguishers, then will be the same as the lack of sympathy the Public will show in years to come, Why am I writing this When the truth Comes out about Alfie Meadows, Jody Mcintyre or the Prison sentences that the other protesters get, Just remember when these people can’t get jobs year from Now Laurie Penny will be writing Chic lit books and Mcintyre will be on the comedy circuit.

25. Charlieman

@5 George W. Potter: “Nice to see internal tribalism alive and kicking in the Labour party. With a bit of luck it’ll be another 13 years before they’re electable again.”

George, you are acting tribally in your response. Liberals should support liberals wherever they exist, and we should not seek tribal wars.

UK liberalism has been delivered by large L liberals and small L liberals in the UK, Labour and Conservative and Nationalist liberals.

Liberalism is about winning minds; alas when we make the Labour or Conservative more liberal it is a disattribute to electoral success.

“A few years ago, these guys were the dominant faction in a party which won successive landslide elections.”

Bastards eh? Can you ever forgive them?

“Bastards eh? Can you ever forgive them?”

Haha – it seems not!

On a vaguely related topic here is an article which (brilliantly if unintentionally) encapsulates Labour’s problem – they despise their supporters.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/apr/19/labour-working-class-gillian-duffy

@25

I most definitely support liberals where they exist. The problem is that all Labour has at the moment is a slightly fresher looking set of the same old Brownites and Blairites. I see no evidence that they would be any different from Blair and Brown were they to get into government at the next election.

To be fair, they’ve got four years to turn it around but I’m not getting my hopes up.

29. Random Punter

One wonders why this illustrious list of collosal talents of political philosophy didn’t just, erm, stand a candidate against Brown when he contested the leadership?


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Liberal Conspiracy

    Blairities plan "Purple Book" http://bit.ly/hDpMKC

  2. Daniel Paton

    Urrgh. It's too late for this to be an April Fool sadly http://liberalconspiracy.org/2011/04/19/blairities-plan-purple-book/

  3. David Levene

    Actual ROFL http://s.coop/14ql

  4. Zoe Stavri

    It's interesting they picked purple as the colour for Purple Book; purple is also the colour of a big throbbing bellend http://is.gd/Oo1PQM

  5. John West

    Blairities plan “Purple Book” | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/CpntV9q via @libcon

  6. criticalpraxis

    RT @libcon: Blairities plan "Purple Book" http://bit.ly/hDpMKC

  7. pajh

    "possibility of a Purple/Orange coalition" http://bit.ly/gMDrj3 masterminded by Tim Burton's Joker, perchance?

  8. The Blairites might be trying to rise again, but The Purple Book is definitely not Orange | Virtually Naked

    […] demonstration of the Blairites trying to reassert themselves on the party once again, and, as a deliciously bitter piece on Liberal Conspiracy points out, gives senior Labour figures the chance to anonymously have a dig at the boss. Should […]

  9. Six of the Best 151 | Henry Abraham

    […] is publishing its Purple Book in the autumn. (I wonder where they got that idea from?) Writing on Liberal Conspiracy, Don Paskini cannot decide whether to be intrigued or […]

  10. Daniel Pitt

    RT @libcon: Blairities plan "Purple Book" http://bit.ly/hDpMKC

  11. Owen Jones

    I nearly missed @donpaskini's hilarious, devastating slapdown of the corporate-backed, 'Purple Labour' entryists http://bit.ly/hcVsKA

  12. Roses Are Red, Labour Is Blue…Or Maybe Purple… « If You Tolerate This…

    […] Blairities plan “Purple Book” (liberalconspiracy.org) […]





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