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McIntyre Speech: Newcastle
#1
Labour MP Kenneth McIntyre delivered a stump speech to party supporters at a leadership rally in support of James McCrimmon attended primarily by PSA members.

Quote:Friends, friends.

It is my honour to be here with you today in Newcastle, a gem of the industrial jewel of our country. I am pleased to speak this evening for the next leader of the Labour party and the next Prime Minister of our country, James McCrimmon. And I want to speak briefly this evening about the Second People's Charter and not just the Second Charter itself because I do not want to insult any of you, you're all perfectly capable of seeing for yourself what the plan is, but I want to speak personally-- as personally as I can from here, at least-- about what all of this means for us today as British workers, as people living in our great country at this very moment. Because we have a serious choice to make, there is a sort of fork in the road and the decision that gets made will have a last impact on not just the prosperity of our country-- which seems to be all Conservatives are focused about-- but about the welfare and rights of every citizen. I am not being rhetorical friends, I am being honest and real-- I am being authentic.

And authenticity is at the very core of our problem. We have had for so long now successive Conservative governments who have systematically dismantled the social framework that protected each and every one of us, and accepted norm in the post-war modern world. We have been told that it was for our best, that over time we would see the health of our children improve, their education improve. We were told we would have better jobs that were secure, paid well and did not break our bodies. We were told through the privatization of common goods these services would become cheaper, more accessible. We were told that a shopkeepers daughter from downtown understood our plight and would protect us. But it's all been rubbish, it's all been a bloody lie. And although that might be a fact that politicians throw around in Westminster but it's you, the hard working people of Newcastle and all across England and beyond within the United Kingdom who feel the full brunt of this reality. Of living in a world where the government takes action promising better and as time goes on you see nothing but the opposite happen in your lives. Your children are sicker, they are attending classrooms at sizes unseen before in our history. A decent job that is secure and pays enough to cover rent and food for your family is extremely hard to come by-- this is certainly no longer a feature of English life. And the cost of living, the accessibility and availability of services has perished. What the government says does not match what they do or the outcomes they say will happen. It is a problem with authenticity.

The plan that James McCrimmon has for our country with the Second Charter is alarmingly simplistic in approach because it represents a return to normalcy. It cannot be regarded as extreme in any measure because of our present state of affairs and can only be seen as a return to what has always been preached but never practised by the government. Maintaining a fair economy, protecting social services and the rights of workers. All of these things seem to go without saying, they have a degree of common sense to them, but that is a testament to the reckless policies of this government that for years have ran counter-current to these basic and generally accepted tenants. When we hear "looney-left" we know it comes from the wretched-right who seek to undermine and usurp workers and their families at every turn. The Second Charter is not radical because it is nothing new, it stands on the shoulders of giants like Prime Minister Attlee and the First Charter. It is a continuation of the core values of Labour transcribed for the 21st century.

We have seen the affects of years of Conservative mismanagement, Conservative cruelty and Conservative neo-liberal policies that direct hurt the worker and their families. And we now have a concrete plan that will bring the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland back to a degree of normalcy that will see workers rights take centre stage in the development and implementation of policy. And not just social policy but every single aspect of government. That is the pledge to you today, that is the message I bring from the leadership candidate today and that is the essence of true socialism. It is what it means to go back to roots as socialists, as worked united.

And we can take back the levers of power in this country and we can not only undue the shameful and reckless policies but we can enable the law to uphold the rights of workers and for businesses and industry to pay their fair share. The poll tax was not an isolated incident, and it was not solely the result of a neo-liberal government in power. It was the result of a Labour party that was too busy too in-ward, too busy fighting. Too busy hunting and expelling true socialists in the name of becoming more palatable to voters. But the poll tax is proof positive of the need for socialism in the Labour party and our society as a whole. It is proof of the importance of the socialist watch.

Ladies and gentlemen, James McCrimmon's plan is a sound plan. It's a good plan. It's a compassionate plan. And it is a socialist plan. That is why I have endorsed him in this leadership race and ask you today in your conferences and trade union meetings to consider his plan for our party and the future of our great country. Now is the time to take back the levers of power from those who are intent in keeping us down. Thank you.
Kenneth Neil McIntyre
Labour MP (1983- )
Kilmarnok and Loudoun
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