|Letter No 49 by Mike Allott: back to directory|
An outreach programme for Labour
The "one nation" manifesto of 1997 promised "fairness but no favours" towards trade unions, while declaring "New Labour is the political arm of none other than the British people as a whole".
The "aims and values" embodied in the then new clause IV (paragraph 4) committed New Labour to collaborate not only with trade unions and co-operatives, but also with "voluntary organisations, consumer groups and other representative bodies". Unfortunately Labour's core constitutional procedures did not and do not agree with what was then said on the tin.
A party that still operates a 100-year-old membership structure, modelled on a Bolshevik delegate and politburo system, surely cannot be fit for purpose.