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I don’t know why some of us nurture the hope that a Labour leader might someday articulate a little of what we feel, but we do. In these days of the internet, the shadow cabinet is a bit like the Top 20: people have a vague idea of who might be in it but it doesn’t really count for much.
If we want to know what’s inspiring young people, social media offers a better indication than the BBC. But the Beeb does give massive exposure to whoever’s at Number 1, even though he won’t be there for long. So maybe we can be forgiven for minding that he’s being so useless.
Ed Miliband is clearly determined. He crushed the dreams of his brother, a man I wouldn’t like to cross – mainly because I’d fear being bundled onto a plane by the CIA and flown to Bagram air base. It’s possible Ed was more worried that David’s creepy relationship with the US state department would come back to haunt Labour if it elected him.
It’s also possible that Ed intended to offer the country something more progressive than his brother. If so, he doesn’t seem to know what it is. Moreover, he appears to be terrified. He’s so desperate to dissociate himself from union militancy that he sees it in everything unions do, thus trampling his only hope of overcoming the Blairites baying for his downfall – a strong alliance with the unions around an alternative to New Labour.
My stab at amateur psychology is this: the reason he’s terrified is that he knows in his heart that capitalism doesn’t work. He knows because he was taught that from birth. He rebelled as a young man but has been forced back to the realism of his parents by his experience as climate change secretary if not by the banking fiasco.
But anti-capitalism is now the belief that dare not speak its name at Westminster, and what if someone found out?
That’s a generous interpretation, anyway.
Grace Blakeley investigates the curious case of Carillion: how the company’s slow decline and abrupt liquidation reveals the nature of modern capitalism.
The collapse of Carillion could be a watershed moment. Let's seize it to end economically disastrous outsourcing schemes. By Cat Hobbs.
Campaign groups highlight UK complicity in Saudi Arabia's human rights abuses.
Three founders of Momentum talk to Ashish Ghadiali about the two years that have transformed their lives and the fortunes of the British left.
Andrew Smith from Campaign Against the Arms Trade gives the run-down on one of the UK's most profitable - and most deadly - industries.
The real story behind the fire in Grande Synthe’s Linière refugee camp, Dunkirk. From 'Bordered Lives – How Europe fails refugees and migrants' by Hsiao-Hung Pai
Javier Pérez De La Cruz writes about the working class Berlin neighbourhood wrung dry by gentrifiers.
Across the world, thousands of protesters are taking on the planet’s biggest fossil fuel companies. We should support them – and if we can, we should join them. By Kara Moses
Students are suffering the effects of financial instability, stress, and slashed mental health services. Mark Crawford reports.
They're not defending free speech - they're just seeking to shore up their own power, writes Ilyas Nagdee
Jeremy Hunt is poised to flog the last of the NHS
Peter Roderick sounds the alarm on an 'attack on the fundamental principles of the NHS'.
Viva Siva, 1923-2018
A. Sivanandan, who died this week, was a hugely important figure in the politics of race and class. As part of our tributes, Red Pepper is republishing this 2009 profile of him by Arun Kundnani
Sivanandan: When memory forgets a giant
Daniel Renwick calls for the whole movement to discover and remember the vital work of A. Sivanandan, who died this week
A master-work of graphic satire
American Jewish cartoonist Eli Valley’s comic commentary on America, the US Jewish diaspora and Israel is nothing if not near the knuckle, Richard Kuper writes
Meet the frontline activists facing down the global mining industry
Activists are defending land, life and water from the global mining industry. Tatiana Garavito, Sebastian Ordoñez and Hannibal Rhoades investigate.
Transition or succession? Zimbabwe’s future looks uncertain
The fall of Mugabe doesn't necessarily spell freedom for the people of Zimbabwe, writes Farai Maguwu
Don’t let Corbyn’s opponents sneak onto the Labour NEC
Labour’s powerful governing body is being targeted by forces that still want to strangle Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, writes Alex Nunns