August 31, 2016
Labour Central, Kings Manor
Newcastle, NE1 6PA
Dear Iain McNicol:
It is with great sadness that I write this letter, I take no pleasure in having to point out to the wider public, outside the Labour party, the tragic and pitiful state the Labour party has descended into under your stewardship.
When the current state of affairs is made known to the public at large the Labour party will become a laughing stock, and that is heart breaking for all true supporters of the socialist ideals of the Labour party.
Above all else the Labour party, as an organization for social justice, has to lead by example and remember that the most important components of that organization are its members. They are the lifeblood of our party, and as such should be treated with the utmost respect. If we as a party cannot demonstrate that our organization is run in a democratic manor, that is beyond reproach, we will have no moral authority to govern this country, and we will never be taken seriously by the electorate.
This purge of Jeremy Corbyn voters that is currently going on under your stewardship is nothing short of a disgrace. Over 100 years of Labour party values are being flushed down the toilet, and you are the one pulling the chain.
Any decent Labour member or supporter, whether they support Jeremy Corbyn or Owen Smith, will be disgusted and appalled in equal measure at this crass and openly partisan rigging of the ballot. Most members probably don’t realize what is going on because of lack of reporting in the main stream media.
The following arbitrary rule that you have set up specifically for this election is wrong on so many levels.
“No abuse of any kind by members or supporters shall be tolerated. All eligible members and supporters must conduct themselves in a calm and polite manner and be respectful to each other at all times. Any racist, abusive or foul language or behaviour at meetings, on social media or in any other context will be dealt with according to the Rules and procedures of the Labour Party.”
- It is perfectly correct for the Labour party to police their own meetings and I agree with all aspects of the above rule in relation to those meetings; however it is not the Labour party’s remit to police social media. The only way the party would be justified in getting involved in those situations, would be in case of racist abuse, which should never be tolerated under any circumstances.
- This policy of trawling member’s social media discussions and comments could be justified if it were carried out in a fair and even handed way. However, it has become patently obvious that this is nothing less than a flimsy excuse to identify Jeremy Corbyn supporters and prevent them from voting in the leadership election.
This flagrant abuse of the democratic principle of free and fair elections has no place in a democratic society, and certainly no place in the Labour party.
Examples of high profile Owen Smith supporters who have not been suspended are:
Labour party donor Michael Foster – describing Jeremy Corbyn supporters as Nazi “Sturm Abteilung (stormtroopers)”
Foster has not been suspended for this outrageous slur, and can still vote.
John McTernan a leading opponent of Corbyn and former advisor to Tony Blair tweeted this on the 19/08/2016:
“A traitor to our nation’s values will never ever be Prime Minister and is unfit to lead the Labour party”. McTernan has not been suspended and can still vote.
But most shameful of all is Owen Smith himself, who at one of his hustings described Jeremy Corbyn as a “lunatic”. This outrageous slur on his mental health cannot be allowed to go unpunished.
Compare this with the 100 000+ Corbyn supporters already purged from the Labour party and unable to vote for comments such as “I F”””ing love the Foo Fighters” on twitter, or in my case no information provided as to what I was supposed to have said.
There are now only two courses of action open to you Mr McNicol, to allow you to retain some semblance of self respect and dignity, and more importantly, reestablish the Labour party’s credibility. The first is to suspend Owen Smith from the Labour party and thus withdraw his nomination to stand in this leadership election; or secondly rescind all suspensions made in this purge of Labour party members (excluding those suspended for racial abuse) from voting, and issue ballot papers forthwith.
Member and supporter of the Labour party’s reputation