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Labour digs up Thatcher—again

Organise now against the Labour Party
Issue 2897
Rachel Reeves

Labour shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves (Picture: Flickr/ Keir Starmer)

Labour’s mission to become the bosses’ choice at the next election is close to complete. Rachel Reeves, the shadow chancellor, was set to channel former Tory prime minister Margaret Thatcher in a speech to finance bosses on Tuesday this week.

She was expected to argue that Britain faces an “inflection point” like Thatcher faced when she came to office in 1979.  And, like Thatcher, Reeves pledged to work with business to create a decade of “national renewal”. Thatcher caused a mass privatisation of industries, the crushing of trade unions and a huge transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich. 

It’s not the first time Labour’s celebrated Thatcher. In December, leader Keir Starmer described Thatcher as one of the few prime ministers who created “meaningful change”. Reeves wants to show that Starmer has fully rejected the economic approach of former leader Jeremy Corbyn. 

She was set to promise that Labour can achieve economic growth “through partnership between active government and enterprising business”. And it would “remove the blockages constraining our productive capacity” with “the solution (lying) in wide-ranging supply-side reforms”.

What this really means is only making changes to workers’ rights that businesses will accept. A Labour government will defend those at the top at the expense of ordinary people. Reeves’s speech shows how vital a break from Labour is—and to organise now for the fightback if Starmer gets into Number 10.

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