I write as Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Orpington, disgusted and demotivated by the suicidal speculation on Ed Miliband’s leadership from my own side. So it was with relief and pleasure that I read Alan Johnson’s excellent piece (I’ve never sought the Labour leadership – and I never will, The Guardian, 11 November).
Besides displaying admirable loyalty, logic and discipline, Alan also focuses on the Tories’ barefaced rewriting of history, blaming Labour for all the nation’s woes, and absolving their friends and paymasters in the world of finance from any responsibility. Meanwhile David Cameron, George Osborne and Theresa May fail dismally to deliver on their promises.
Alan shows no reluctance to rake over the past and so delivers a withering critique of the coalition government and provides a timely warning that returning Cameron to No 10 will amount to business as usual. In contrast, radical and courageous policies are required, such as Gordon Brown’s refusal to join the euro.
I am sure Labour leaders welcome Alan’s loyalty. I think they would do well to copy his willingness to remind people of the past. That dents the Tories’ claim to economic competence and lays the foundation for the development of considered policy alternatives to eternal austerity, which has been tried but manifestly failed. Thankfully, Ed Miliband has shown some signs of responding along these lines, but they need to be fortified.
Nigel de Gruchy,
Labour Party General Election Candidate for Orpington
You can also read the letter on The Guardian letters page.
Photo of Alan Johnson by Hull Labour Group at hulllabourgroup.com.