I always believed that Labour had lost it's fight because it had lost sight of it's purpose. I was wrong. The party machines remains acutely aware of that purposes, it just chooses to ignore it. The three mainstream candidates have united to show only too clearly that their fight is still within them, it is still bristling.
How dare you declare that if you lose you will not support the new leader? We had one sore loser, David, that instead of staying on and helping his brother and his party win the election, he resigned and left. He showed what was important to him and it was not the Labour party and the people of this country. We do not need any more people like that.
The vultures have circled around Labour for years. Miliband even showed off a giant gravestone at one point, and outsiders have frequently dealt the party a huge blow, e.g. Russell Brand, who displayed a sudden passion for politics and urged his apathetic fans to vote for Miliband... a mere 14 days after the deadline to register had passed!
Everyone knows that, at any job interview, they will ask you where you see yourself in five years' time. It would be foolhardy not to prepare for that question. But it would also be a bit daft to only prepare for that question. You wouldn't expect to get the job if you said 'I think this job is essentially pointless for half a decade and I have no idea what I'd do with my time until then'. Even if your plans for five years later were awesome.
I agree that we need an honest debate about welfare - just like we need honest debates about housing, education and all other aspects of government policy that impact greatly on people's daily lives. And I think these debates are best approached from the centre. For that reason, I still think you're the Labour Party's greatest hope as leader right now. But to do that, Andy, you have to take people with you. You have to lead them. You have to give them what Sarah Palin so memorably called "that hopey-changey stuff" (and I think it's about time the Left reclaimed that from her, don't you?). This is what Jeremy Corbyn is doing so well - and why he's getting such levels of support from party members, especially new ones like myself.
In this blog we look at the 20 select committees whose job is to scrutinise specific government departments. We have excluded 'cross-cutting' and internal committees committees from our analysis because many of these - including the Environmental Audit Committee and all those with non-elected chairs and members - have yet to be established.