Putting public ownership back on the agenda

Labour will slash energy, water and post bills through public ownership, writes KEN LIVINGSTONE.

THIS week, Labour outlined how through public ownership — and a commitment to putting people rather than rip-off private profits first — it will slash energy, water and post bills.

This could not be more needed, as the privatisation of key public utilities has seen household bills hiked up to pay for dividend and interest payments while the quality of service has often deteriorated.
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Britain can no longer afford the Tories

Recent economic reports were a damning indictment of seven years of Tory austerity, writes Ken Livingstone.

Last week’s Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) forecast evaluation report says it will have to “significantly” lower its estimates for Britain’s productivity, blowing a large hole in Tory plans for the public finances ahead of the government’s November budget.

In particular, the revised figures point to the average rate of productivity growth of 0.2 per cent over the past five years as a more accurate guide for 2017 than the previous forecast of 1.6 per cent.
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Corbyn’s Labour has the answers

Conference this week showed a rejuvenated party outlining an alternative that can both win for Labour and transform Britain, writes KEN LIVINGSTONE.

THIS week’s Labour Conference was the best attended, most exciting and most participatory for years. For this alone Jeremy Corbyn and his leadership team deserve great credit.

The highlight of the week for me was Corbyn’s speech. He powerfully explained that neoliberalism and the Tories’ “degraded regime has a tragic monument — the chilling wreckage of Grenfell Tower.
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House the many not the few

The dramatic rise in homelessness under the Tories is a national scandal, writes KEN LIVINGSTONE.

ACCORDING to the government’s spending watchdog — the National Audit Office (NAO) — homelessness is up by a staggering 134 per cent since the Tories gained power in 2010.

The figures also show that rough sleeping more than doubled since 2010.

The number of households in temporary accommodation rose by 60 per cent, now affecting 73 per cent more youngsters than in March 2011.
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Tory austerity means cost-of-living crisis is set to deepen

Tory-DUP coalition of chaos is presiding over the slowest-growing economy in the G7, writes KEN LIVINGSTONE.

AS PARLIAMENT returns this week, more evidence has piled up over the summer recess that the Tory-DUP coalition of chaos is failing Britain’s economy with its commitment to never-ending austerity.

Specifically, Office for National Statistics figures released last week show that household spending growth has slowed to its weakest pace for two-and-a-half years, which is yet another reflection of seven years of Tory economic failure, adding to the growing pile of evidence that their ideologically driven austerity is bad for Britain’s economy and society.
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It’s time to retake our NHS from the Tories

Labour is a government in waiting and is ready to properly fund Britain’s health, writes KEN LIVINGSTONE.

IN THE same week that it was revealed that the Tories are planning more sell-offs of our NHS, new research published by the Labour Party showed that nearly half of England’s maternity units closed to new mothers at some point in 2016.

With these revelations coming months after the winter crisis the Red Cross termed a “humanitarian crisis,” it seems that under Tory austerity, we now have a permanent crisis in the NHS.
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Tory hypocrisy on student debt knows no bounds

Don’t believe the media lies, it is Corbyn’s Labour that cares about obscene levels of student debt, writes KEN LIVINGSTONE.

DESPITE a media frenzy of misrepresentation fuelled by the Tories, polling this week confirmed that only 17 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds interpreted Jeremy Corbyn’s comments to “deal with” historic student debt as promising a full write-off.

Do the tabloid journalists and Tory MPs who over the last few weeks have been again and again stoking an argument about student debt — and are desperately, even now, trying to keep the row going — care in the slightest about student debt and spiralling tuition fees?
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Ecuador shows investment works

KEN LIVINGSTONE pays tribute to the radical policies and achievements of former president Rafael Correa.

RAFAEL CORREA recently ended his time as president of Ecuador; his 10 years as leader have been marked by some outstanding achievements, which should be noted internationally by all progressives.

In a break from the neoliberal policies of the past, in the last decade Ecuador invested massively in free healthcare and free university education.

Programmes were developed to reduce poverty and measures were taken to combat tax evasion, reduce capital flight and protect the environment from plundering by multinational corporations.
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The Queen’s Speech shows May is weak

Corbyn, by contrast, leads a Labour Party that is ready to govern in the interests of the many, writes KEN LIVINGSTONE.

THE success of Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn-led general election campaign in defying the odds and denying Theresa May a majority continues to transform the political scene in Britain, and nothing illustrated this more than the Queen’s Speech this week.

Key plans of the Tory manifesto were nowhere to be seen.

From scrapping free school lunch meals, to the hated “dementia tax” — which has been replaced by a review — to scrapping the winter fuel allowance for millions of pensioners through means-testing, to the proposed return of the barbaric practice of fox hunting, Theresa May simply can’t be confident of getting most of their manifesto through Parliament.
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Theresa May can be defeated and Jeremy Corbyn be the next PM

Theresa May entered the general election promising to be a strong and stable leader but is now reliant on the deeply reactionary DUP to govern, after one of the biggest own goals in British political history. Her government will be deeply unstable and can be defeated.

One reason why she can be defeated is that the scale of enthusiasm generated for Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour message during the General Election campaign – especially amongst younger voters – was stunning and can provide a base to build on and change the direction of British politics for years to come.
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