A very good post on Martin Bright’s New Statesman’s blog which looks beyond what he calls the Michael Martin affair, and suggests that
“the real question for younger Labour MPs is how they define themselves against the other parties without reverting to the old politics of class identity. Oddly, this may mean a return to certain core Labour values: an abhorrence of poverty, social injustice and inequality. Some Labour MPs are worried that young people joining the party are more interested in civil liberties and global warming than in the millions of people still living in poverty in Britain today. Yet it is for those who still believe that Labour has a duty to the poorest in society to offer a persuasive argument that the party can and should make a difference, rather than simply manage the status quo better than the Tories.
If Labour backbenchers are looking for a cause more worthy than the Speaker of the House of Commons, they could do worse than commit themselves to honouring pledges to end poverty in Britain. Blair and Brown proved they could do what was once unimaginable: run a successful economy and increase investment in public services while winning over swaths of middle-class voters. What the Conservative Party has yet to prove, despite the rhetoric, is that its frontbenchers, most of whom do not have a single member of their extended families who has known a day of economic hardship, really care about those who have.”