My tweets from ‘5 days’:

Read up from the bottom:
 
. Robbo fails to talk to anyone from SNP, Plaid, Greens, SDLP, Alliance. etc, all of whom wanted to stop the Tories. Usual establishment bias 6 minutes ago via mobile web
 
. Beeb should have interviewed some of the small Parties without which the rainbow #progressivemajority alliance was impossible

  • FrancisT27 Wonder if Clegg can hold his seat next time around given what he’s done to his city since May. #5days 11 minutes ago via TweetDeck Retweeted by you and 2 others
  •  
  • charliebach After this programme #5days lib dem support will decrease even more #cleggfail #libdemsgone 11 minutes ago via Twitter for iPhone Retweeted by you
  •  
  • Sickening to see Cameron coming into his ‘birthright’… How have we ended up with a neoliberal Old-Etonian cutter in no.10, in 2010? 12 minutes ago via mobile web

    • Laws is of course fibbing through his teeth. He has been plotting coalition with the Tories for years. #5Days 14 minutes ago via mobile web

      • cjmckeon Clegg says he changed his mind on cuts before the election? Is he lying now, or was he lying then? #5Days 16 minutes ago via TweetDeck Retweeted by you and 1 other
      •  
      • AndrewprG If Nick Clegg thinks the Labour Party “lost the election”, what does he think the Lib Dems did. #5days 35 minutes ago via Twitter for iPhone Retweeted by you and 15 others
      •  
      • @sunny_hundal You’re right: they should be interviewing @CarolineLucas, Harman, Y. Cooper… 17 minutes ago via mobile web in reply to sunny_hundal

        • Robbo has totally missed the story: it was the Labour deadwood (Blunkett, Straw, Reid – and to some extent Balls) who made a deal impossible 20 minutes ago via mobile web

          • cjmckeon Just wondering why the BBC got their most pro-Tory man to do #5Days – what happened to balance? 25 minutes ago via TweetDeck Retweeted by you and 1 other
          •  
          • MirrorJames Nick “cut now” Clegg ahead by a neck in crowded field of people who come out badly from #5Days 24 minutes ago via mobile web Retweeted by you and 3 others

            • theday2day : so Clegg admits he changed his mind on cuts b4 election. Did you not think that needed sharing with the voters Nick? #5days 26 minutes ago via TweetDeck Retweeted by you and 7 others
            •  
            •    Here is where Clegg is in terrible trouble… his savage cuts double flipflop has been disastrous for us all. #5Days 25 minutes ago via mobile web

              •    Blame for the failure to bring in a #progressivemajority govt rests heavily with Reid, Blunkett & Straw.The Labourites who stomped on a deal 27 minutes ago via mobile web

                •   What Clegg has just said [that AV without a referendum WAS under discussion with Labour] is true, according to my information. 29 minutes ago via mobile web

                  •   ….because they (the DUP) were furious that the Tories had joined with the OUP. The numbers added up, Caroline included. The WILL was missing 31 minutes ago via mobile web
                  • Yeah, fun to see that Smith Square scene. I was standing 3 yards from Clegg when he was on that megaphone. @GuyAitchison 40 minutes ago via mobile web in reply to GuyAitchison 
                  • . ‘Heroin’?! Bizarre choice of soundtrack. 42 minutes ago via mobile web

                    Local elections – 6 weeks today!

                    We are having local elections in Norwich on September 9th this year. That’s 6 weeks today! This could be the big one – this is the year we aim to become the biggest Party on the City Council… Can _you_ come and help us achieve this historic aim?
                    Call 01603 611909, or email help@norwichgreenparty.org 
                    Do vote for us, if you live here; if you don’t, then do come to Norwich, and help us make this the year that Norwich finally does go Green in earnest! It will (hopefully) point the way at last to a sustainable future…

                    BEYOND THE _TRACTATUS_ WARS – Information about my next edited book, a sequel to THE NEW WITTGENSTEIN

                    Over fifteen years have passed since Cora
                    Diamond and James Conant turned Wittgenstein
                    scholarship upside down with the program of
                    ‘resolute’ reading, and ten years since this reading was
                    crystallized in the major collection, The New Wittgenstein,
                    also with Routledge. This approach remains at the
                    center of the debate about Wittgenstein and his
                    philosophy, and this book draws together the latest
                    thinking of the world’s leading Tractatarian
                    scholars and promising newcomers. Showcasing
                    one piece alternately from each ‘camp’, Beyond
                    The Tractatus Wars pairs newly commissioned pieces addressing
                    differing views on how to understand early
                    Wittgenstein, providing for the first time an arena
                    in which the debate between ‘strong’ resolutists,
                    ‘mild’ resolutists and ‘elucidatory’ readers of the book can really take
                    place. The book includes famous ‘samizdat’ essays by
                     Warren Goldfarb and Roger White that are finally seeing the light of day.

                    Referendum date will not be shifted to appease Tory rebels – but the rebellion IS a cause for concern

                    My source close to the Deputy PM’s Office (the source which enabled me to the one who broke the news nationally of the referendum date: http://www.leftfootforward.org/2010/07/av-referendum-to-be-announced-next-week-held-in-may/ ) indicates that they (Clegg – and Cameron) will be absolutely adamant [and quite right too] about not switching the referendum date; but that they are slightly nervous about the Tory backbench revolt. For, if it escalated, it could be a serious challenge to Cameron’s authority. The danger that they are aware of is if the Tory rebels simply link up directly with the newly-announced [and badly opportunist] Labour obstructionist position against the legislation (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/labour/7913728/Labour-MPs-to-join-Tory-rebellion-over-voting-reform.html & http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2010/jul/27/shadow-cabinet-to-oppose-voting-reform-bill?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter).
                    Sunder Katwala has just said “I hope LibDems who want to win AV referendum realise ability to mobilise Labour votes looks decisive. Time to build some bridges …” http://www.nextleft.org/2010/07/labour-should-support-av-while-opposing.html . Fair enough; but Labour needs to realise how bad it will look, if it opposes AV, which was after all a manifesto commitment!!

                    Compass & pluralism – My Latest LFF piece:

                    Here is the unexpurgated version of the piece, with some additional interesting tidbits:

                     

                    Compass and pluralism

                     

                    Compass does not allow members of non-Labour-Parties full membership; it is considering changing that rule; it must make the change, if Neal Lawson’s claim that Compass is a pluralist organisation and part of a movement towards a genuine Left-pluralism is to be both true and seen to be true.

                     

                    Compass is a major sign of life in Labourism, and a source of pluralism on the Left (http://www.newstatesman.com/uk-politics/2010/06/pluralist-party-labour ). Take for instance Compass’s call for tactical voting, at the recent General Election: (http://www.compassonline.org.uk/news/item.asp?n=9314 ), and its support for electoral reform.

                    But there remains a contradiction at the heart of Compass’s pluralist mission. Compass, while not formally affiliated to the Labour Party in any way, has a rule that forbids members of other Parties from being full members. In other words, Compass’s ‘pluralism’ is very strictly curtailed, because members of other parties cannot participate in Compass’s formal democratic structures, and thus cannot play any democratic part in determining Compass’s own direction.

                    This came home to me with full force recently. Applying to Compass for membership, I was told that, as a Green Party member, I was entitled only to associate membership, with no voting rights. I received my membership pack, and rather bizarrely this included a letter that stated “You’re a member of a democratic organisation. Every year Compass members get a say in how the organisation is run through our management committee elections [etc.]”. I queried this with Gavin Hayes, Compass General Secretary. He replied that I received this letter, the same as any other Compass [full] member gets, because there are so few associate members that it is not worth there being a separate letter written for them (us). This seems a rather unsatisfactory response: it is rather insulting or at least bemusing to receive a letter telling one that one is part of a democratic organisation – when in fact one is excluded from its democracy. Compass would without doubt attract more members who belong to political Parties other than Labour, if it were to change the rule excluding us from full membership.

                    I queried with Gavin Hayes (Compass’s General Secretary) the status of the rule excluding members of other political Parties from full membership in Compass. He replied: “The rule is something we examining at the moment. Another senior Compass source spoke with me at greater length, and explained that “It’s certainly not inconceivable that we change that rule. We could for instance disaggregate the membership of Compass, allowing those Compass members who are compatible with Labour-Party affiliation to vote in those of Compass’s affairs that exclusively concern Labour – such as the ballot we are holding on who Compass should back for Labour Leader – but allowing all Compass members, including members of the Green Party and of other parties, to vote on all other matters.” (This same senior Compass source went on to say, fascinatingly, that “If Caroline Lucas were a member of the Labour Party, then she’d probably be elected the next Leader of the Labour Party – so it certainly seems reasonable to try to work out a way for her to be able to become a full member of Compass…”.)

                    Compass is to be applauded for pushing at the boundaries of Labour tribalism, while retaining influence and leverage on Labour. Allowing Caroline Lucas to speak at its conferences for example has been a brave move that has paid dividends (http://liberalconspiracy.org/2009/10/02/compass-was-right-to-invite-the-greens/ ).

                    But this question of who is allowed to join Compass as a full member is a vital test for Compass, and for the future of Labourism. If it really wants to embrace a pluralist politics, a politics suitable for a politically- and electorally- reformed U.K., if it really wants to prepare the way for the new coalitional politics which AV and PR will bring (see http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/06/28/why-the-left-will-always-be-at-a-loss-without-vote-reform/ ), then Compass needs to change this rule. So long as Compass forbids members of other progressive political forces from full membership, then it remains tacitly nothing but a glorified Labour Party faction. But if Compass were to allow the likes of me — and Caroline Lucas and Adam Price and Salma Yaqoob and so on — in, on equal terms, then it would be practising what it preached. That would be pluralism in action.

                    Factory farming must end, say Norwich Greens

                    Prominent Norwich Green Councillor Adrian Ramsay will call for an end to factory farming when he joins campaigners from Animal Aid at an awareness raising event in Norwich city centre this Monday 26th July. Campaigners will highlight the human health risks associated with keeping animals in poor conditions on factory farms.

                    A stall will be held at the bottom of Hayhill on Gentleman’s Walk from 12 noon until 2pm [PHOTO AND INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITY: 1PM with Adrian Ramsay]. It incorporates a series of hard-hitting images, all taken in the UK, designed to expose the conditions that animals endure in some factory farms.


                    As well as being Deputy Leader of the Green Party nationally and a Norwich Councillor, Adrian Ramsay has been a member of the national campaign group Animal Aid for 15 years. He commented:


                    This is an issue very close to my heart – Green Party policies on animal protection were one of the things that first attracted me to the party 12 years ago, and they remain just as important now.


                    There is clear evidence of a link between factory farming and disease outbreaks like bird flu and BSE. The Green Party is the only party that has pledged to end factory farming in the UK, as well as enforce strict welfare standards. We are widely acknowledged to have the strongest policies on animal protection.


                    This campaign will show that ending factory farming is the right ethical decision in terms of animal welfare but also the right decision for human health.”


                    During the 2007/8 bird flu outbreak, hundreds of thousands of chickens and turkeys were slaughtered on East Anglian farms to try to prevent the spread of this virulent disease. During an investigation it was uncovered that Bernard Matthews, the UK’s largest turkey farmer, who farms more than seven million turkeys each year, had been warned several times about hygiene lapses on its farms.


                    The Green Party would encourage more sustainable forms of food production in place of factory farming. Adrian Ramsay said:


                    “We need to move away from factory farming and towards farming that is healthier for humans, animals and the environment. This means more localised and less intensive agriculture.”


                    Animal Aid has published a video on its website showing the horrific conditions in which the majority of Britain’s farm animals live. The video can be viewed at: http://www.animalaid.org.uk/h/f/CAMPAIGNS/blog//4//?be_id=264.

                    A lesson in (ir-)responsible writing

                    Check out this dumb, irresponsible headline from the New Scientist: ‘Record-breaking heat does not ‘prove’ global warming’ http://bit.ly/ciwMJD Headlines need to be designed so that they are in themselves not only true, but not misleading. This headline will encourage ‘casual viewers’ to think that the New Scientist doesn’t believe that global warming has been proven.
                    Next thing, they’ll be giving us headlines like “Millions of deaths do not ‘prove’ that smoking causes lung cancer”…