Thursday, 12 July 2018

The Power of Ten

Think of a sum of money so small that you could afford to lose 10 times that much. If that sum is 50p, then it is 50p, and I would be glad to hear from you. If that sum is one thousand pounds, then I really would be very glad indeed to hear from you. But whatever that sum, then please consider donating it for each of the following with which you agreed, in order to help to put me into the House of Commons for the area where I have lived since before I started school. There is going to be another hung Parliament, so one MP could make all the difference:

1. I am both a product and a feature of the political pluralism of North West Durham, where Labour holds fewer than half of the County Council seats, the Conservative parliamentary candidate won 34 per cent of the vote last year, the Liberal Democrat candidate cut the Labour majority in half in 2010, and an Independent kept his deposit both in 2005 and in 2010. Wear Valley was controlled for a time by the Liberal Democrats, who remained numerous on it until its abolition. Derwentside was in practice controlled by an alliance between the Independents and that section of the local Labour Party which now supports my parliamentary candidacy; its Leader from that time, Councillor Alex Watson OBE, is one of my Campaign Patrons. My other Campaign Patron is Davey Ayre, a legendary local trade unionist.

2. I would appoint an Independent, a Labourite, a Conservative and a Liberal Democrat in each of the County Wards, ideally including at least one person in each of the former District Wards, to work with me and with local people. The price of my support for any Government in the coming hung Parliament would be the necessary support for a number of projects in each of the former District Wards equal to the former number of District Councillors, together with justice for the 472 Teaching Assistants whose pay Durham County Council had cut by 23 per cent, and together with the implementation of the plan for the rail service in the North of England that was recently advanced by well over 20 local and regional newspapers, most of which have never supported Labour, and only one of which did so last year. And yes, I do mean the price of my support for any Government. Even a Government headed by Jeremy Corbyn. I already know two of the three such projects in Lanchester, namely the restoration of the full bus service and the construction of adequate flood defences, as well as one in Weardale, namely the saving of the Sixth Form at Wolsingham.

3. I am now working with all of the non-Labour members of Durham County Council and with the trade unions, to bring Volkswagen’s production for the British market to County Durham after, or even before, Brexit, and I am more than open to further suggestions along similar lines.

4. As the Member of Parliament for North West Durham, my Westminster office would be a global centre for the broadly based opposition and alternative to neoliberal economic policy and to neoconservative foreign policy, strongly asserting that opposition and that alternative as the real centre ground. I would not have voted for Donald Trump, but nor would I have voted for Hillary Clinton, and I do understand why people did vote for Trump. The international financial institutions are a racket that has failed even in its own terms. NATO commits us to the defence of Turkish Islamists and of Eastern European neo-Nazis, and it charges us two per cent of our GDP for the privilege. We need to cancel Trident in favour of conventional defence, care for veterans, flood defences, and an “all of the above” energy policy.

5. Although I am firmly a man of the Left, and in many ways a supporter of Jeremy Corbyn, I have now been out of the Labour Party for far longer than I was ever in it, and I have profound differences with Corbyn, including the appointment of his enemies to frontbench and other positions, the overly cautious housing and transport policies, the Customs Union, the whipped abstentions on CETA and the EEA, the free vote on Syria, the whipped abstention on Trident, the acceptance of any part of the Government’s baseless claims about Salisbury and Douma, the complaint that the recent bombing of Syria had not been authorised by Parliament rather than that it had been wrong in itself, the failure to bring the arming of Saudi Arabia back to the floor of the House of Commons, the failure to travel to Iran in order to demand the release of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and Abbas Edelat, the capitulation to neoliberal capitalism on the issues of drugs and prostitution, the support for the Government’s indulgence of the ludicrous theory of gender self-identification, the failure to secure justice for the 472 Teaching Assistants whose pay the Labour Durham County Council has cut by 23 per cent, the paying of court to the unrepresentative Board of Deputies of British Jews and to the astroturfed Jewish Leadership Council, the failure to prevent the suspension or expulsion of distinguished Jewish and other activists on trumped up charges of anti-Semitism, and the failure to nip in the bud the imported New York practice of smearing black activists as anti-Semitic if they become too uppity for the Liberal Establishment.

6. This is one of the areas the votes of which decided the EU referendum. We voted to reject 39 years of failure under all three parties, going all the way back to the adoption of monetarism by the Callaghan Government in 1977, the year of my birth. Brexit needs to meet our needs, which are not for chasing after the unicorns of the “Anglosphere” (what were once the Dominions have moved on, and anti-British protectionism is America’s historical norm), but for trade deals with the BRICS countries even while remaining thoroughly critical of their present governments, for integration into the Belt and Road Initiative, for full enjoyment of our freedom from the Single Market’s bans on such measures as State Aid and capital controls, for an extra £350 million per week for the National Health Service, and for the restoration of the United Kingdom’s historic fishing rights in accordance with international law: 200 miles, or to the median line. The Government’s proposals represent the only thing worse than staying in the EU, namely becoming a rule-taker but not a rule-maker, and paying while having no say, so that Britain would be reduced to a colony and a satrapy. In referendum between that and Remain, then even Remain would be preferable. But the key is to stop matters from ever making it that far.

7. I am not a member of the same political party as Tony Blair, and in fact I am actively pursuing a complaint to the Police about him in relation to his complicity in torture, which was recently exposed by the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament. A Chambers and Partners Band 1 legal practice is now on standby to pursue an action to bring about a Coroner’s Inquest into the death of Dr David Kelly, an action before the International Criminal Court against those who had brought slavery back to Libya, and an action before the High Court of Justiciary of Scotland inviting it to exercise its declaratory power against Tony Blair and his accomplices in the aggression against Iraq in 2003. All of these actions are to begin immediately upon my election to the House of Commons. As are the actions to bring about a Coroner’s Inquest into the death of Dawn Sturgess, and to challenge the legality of the recent bombing of Syria after the confirmation by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons that no nerve agent had been used at Douma.

8. I have spent more than 20 years, since I was just about still in my teens and had never seen the Internet, trying to get the story out about Harriet Harman and the Paedophile Information Exchange. I have paid a terrible journalistic and political price for it, but I have no regrets. Media that always knew about it simply ignored the whole thing, banning me from their websites and what have you, until a period of no more than two weeks when they needed to distract attention from Patrick Rock. Normal service was rapidly resumed, and it has continued ever since. No one has done more on this issue than I have. No one. And now, the plan is advancing to make Harman the next Speaker of the House of Commons. Not only would I oppose her election, but, were she already in post, then I would oppose her re-election at the start of the next Parliament.

9. As the Member of Parliament for North West Durham, my Westminster office would be an international centre for Modern Monetary Theory, which answers the right-wing question, perfectly necessary in itself, of where the money for left-wing projects was expected to come from, and which provides, through its Jobs Guarantee, a way of preserving the bargaining power of the trade unions while progressing to the Universal Basic Income that is increasingly favoured across the political spectrum.

10. As part of the Jobs Guarantee, I strongly support the exploitation of the vast reserves of coal in this country and in this county. That, and the extension of civil nuclear power, are the means of delivering high-wage, high-skilled, high-status, unionised jobs while securing independence from Arab oil, from Russian gas, and from coal that has been mined using child and slave labour. Including in North Korea, from which Donald Trump is planning for his own dynasty to export coal to a dependent world deep into the twenty-second century. Horror stories about how coal was burned or mined in the Britain of the twentieth century have no relevance to the Britain of the twenty-first. At the same time, I am totally opposed to the open-casting of the Pont Valley or anywhere else, digging up hardly any coal while employing hardly anyone. But I reject any approach to climate change which would threaten jobs, workers’ rights, the right to have children, travel opportunities, or universal access to a full diet. Just as I seek to rescue such issues as male suicide, men’s health, and fathers’ rights from those whose economic and other policies have caused the problems. And just as I refuse to recognise racists, Fascists or opportunists as the authentic voices of the accepted need to control immigration.

I need £10,000 in order to stand for Parliament with any chance of winning. My crowdfunding page has been taken down without my knowledge or consent. But you can still email davidaslindsay@hotmail.com instead, and that address accepts PayPal.

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