Mayism and Labour Debate

What Future For Labour Given May’s Right-wing

Populism Adoption Of Elements Of Corbyinism?

Saturday 15 October. 11am-4pm.  ILP conference, ‘Labour On The Brink – What Future For The Party?’ 

Rose Bowl. Leeds.  Further details:

Sunday 16 October. 12pm- 5.30pm. “It’s The Economy Stupid- A Day of Economic Thought & Discussion”

Organised by the Independent Working Class Education Network.

*       What is Neo-Liberalism? Is there such a thing as Corbynomics?

*    Free Trade – Freedom or race to the bottom?

*    Everything you wanted to know about economics, but  were frightened to ask – panel discussion

Tickets: £5 book through

Pay on the day.

It will be followed at 7pm (-11pm) by David Rovics

Letter to my Landlord World Tour. Songs of Social Significance, Plus Politics, Poetry and Dancing

Philadelphia WMC, Sheffield

In association with: Independent Working Class Education Network, Momentum Sheffield and Sheffield Trades Council

Tickets: £10 waged £5 unwaged.

Mayism and the Working Class

“The danger is of a savvy new populist right emerging, one that is comfortable talking about class and offers reactionary solutions to working-class problems. It could denounce the demonisation of the working class and the trashing of its identity. It could claim that the traditional party of working-class people, the Labour party, has turned its back on them.

“Rather than focusing on the deep-seated economic issues that really underpin the grievances of working-class people, it could train its populist guns on immigration and cultural issues. Immigrants could be blamed for economic woes; multiculturalism could be blasted for undermining ‘white’ working-class identity.”

So wrote Owen Jones six years ago in his book  Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class Owen, as he reminds us in his Guardian article today There’s a fight over working-class voters. Labour must not lose it.

A few months ago a poll suggested that 60% of Britons regarded themselves as working-class. The fight for working class support is now part of the political agenda.

It is interesting to see how Prime Minister Teresa May is adopting part of the Corbyn agenda, appearing to move leftwards to a more shared centre position around the concept of ‘society, and the positive interventionist role of Government.

But her agenda is not rolling back the austerity measures of Cameron and Osborne, nor ending the loosening of planning controls, nor ending the continuing cuts to local government. And she is clothing herself In UKIP type right-wing policies.

All the talk about workers rights and clamping down on tax dodging companies will not change the central issue that lay behind the BREXIT revolt: a feeling of impotence, a lack of power to influence our lives and our communities. The centralist, as opposed to enabling, state, will continue. The developers and buy to let multiple unit landlords  will still change the face of London and increase the inequalities, and continue to stress the infrastructure.

Can May hold the tensions of her left and right agenda together or as the strains grow will we drift into some form of modern-day fascism: strong state dictated to by global capital, at the expense of the working class (both those born and those who have settled here)?

A key theme of the Croydon Assembly on Saturday 26 November will be the issue of who controls Croydon and for whose benefit.

Meanwhile those in or within easy reach of Leeds and Sheffield can debate the issues at:

Owen Jones’ article is at

For more analysis of May’s agenda see the TUC

Touchstone blog:




About seancreighton1947

Since moving to Norbury in July 2011 I have been active on local economy, housing and environment issues with Croydon TUC and Croydon Assembly. I am a member of the Love Norbury Residents Associations Planning & Transport Committees, and Chair of Nobury Community Land Trust. I write for Croydon Citizen at I co-ordinate the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Croydon Radical History Networks and edit the North East Popular Politics database. History Project.. I give history talks and lead history walks. I retired in 2012 having worked in the community/voluntary sector and on heritage projects. My history interests include labour movement, mutuality, Black British, slavery & abolition, Edwardian roller skating and the social and political use of music and song. I have a particular interest in the histories of Battersea and Wandsworth, Croydon and Lambeth. I have a publishing imprint History & Social Action Publications.
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