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Andy Burnham on the Westminster bubble

Andy BurnhamThis about sums it up for me:

We’re the professional politician generation, aren’t we? I was schooled in this, kind of, how do we make a press release today that embarrasses the opposition? That’s the kind of politics that everyone was doing, and the kind of culture developed where you’re scrabbling over a bit of the centre ground with micro-policies that are designed to just create a little couple of days’ headlines and create a feeling, but not change much else.

I think Andy has come the furthest and has grown increasingly in stature since the Labour leadership election three years ago. Perhaps there was more to his ‘Aspirational Socialism‘ than he let on at the time.

His comment on Labour in today’s Graun can be read here.


  1. Rod says:

    Andy’s acceptance that it was a mistake to allow the marketisation of the NHS is the most significant revelation, I think. Particularly as Andy was responsible for NHS Global – the entrance of the NHS in the global health market.

    This is a major about turn. His work on the future of the NHS looks very promising and let’s hope Andy speaks out more often. But no doubt his rejection of Blairite fundamentals will win him enemies within the do-nothing PLP so it would be useful if Miliband went public and made his support for Andy known.

    It really is high noon for Miliband now – he should put up or step aside.

  2. John Reid says:

    For once Rod I agree

  3. James Martin says:

    Yes, I agree, this is a significant and welcome recognition about what the market really means when it is allowed to distort and undermine state services.

    If only the continuously and amazingly useless Twigg would wake up to the same dangers when it comes to academies and free schools in relation to state education…

  4. Ric Euteneuer says:

    I hope this attitude becomes infectious amongst the (cough) “great and good” in the party, when they realise that SDP mark 2, whilst appealing to tiny a core of swing voters, will not deliver the goods electorally or politically.

    Twigg is like every other Labour supremo of his generation – convinced that what worked for him, will work for the masses. He backs and pushes the party into back Academies and Free Schools despite no real enthusiasm for them in the Party as a whole.

  5. Rob the cripple says:

    Burnham has not had a good few weeks his answers that he told the Tories about the problems with the NHS so they cannot blame him went down well.

    But OK policies after watching and listening to Miliband head toward the right we have had things like, if we get back in we may not well we do not, know might be, but possibly not, think about removing the bedroom tax, then again, we may not, if we cannot or maybe, and they said Brown dithered.

    Not to long ago Labour came out with an idea of having people on welfare benefits for two years only, lose your job get JSA for two years only, but of course if you have just seen this country go into a depression it’s a bit like hearing Brown saying no more boom and bust no more job and no more benefits.

    Welfare well labour have stated they would hammer benefits and welfare if they get back in.

    So it will be very very very interesting to hear or see policies I’d hate to see what they are but it will make or break Labour.

  6. Gary Elsby says:

    During the Blair years, I felt tall as a member as my party could spend anywhere near the Tories on great and good things.
    What a sell on the doorstep that was.

    There has been a total void since.
    Nothing to offer but Ed.

    To move Social Care into the NHS is a piece of sheer class.
    It is a Mona Lisa for the art world and could be talked about within Labour circles for years to come.
    Brilliant, clear thinking Socialism and easy to understand.

    I don’t understand why we all didn’t think of this in the first place.
    Maybe we can’t see the wood for the trees.


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