Looking at Labour

Former New Zealand Rhodes Scholar and Vice Chancellor of Waikato University Bryan Gould writes in the Guardian that “barring a miracle, and miracles seem likely to be in short supply, [Britain’s] Labour will lose the next election.” “The question is not the survival of the Labour government, but the survival of Labour as a force in British politics … All is not lost. Political parties can and do recover from electoral wipeouts. My own native New Zealand provides a good and encouraging example. The New Zealand Labour government elected in 1984 confounded opponents and supporters alike by embarking on a ferocious revolution that saw New Zealand become the test-bed for a daring experiment in far-right, free market economics. By 1990, it was thumbs down, ushering in nine years of conservative government. Labour’s return to office in 1999 as a competent and well-regarded government not only won two further elections but also restored sense and order to New Zealand’s political scene. Even after an election loss last year, Labour remains the government in waiting. Voters know that, if they want a left-of-centre government, Labour will deliver. Even in opposition, Labour remains identified with left positions and attitudes and is widely seen as where voters will go when they tire of the new conservative government.”


Tags: Bryan Gould  Guardian (The)  Labour Party  Rhodes Scholar  

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