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Pray the future will never need…”

I had hoped to be the first to coin the inevitable term, “loangate”, over the recent Labour funding scandal. Not surprisingly, though, The Independent has beaten me to it.

Labour sleaze: it’s real, it’s here, it’ll probably bring Blair down. Let’s just hope he takes the corrupt & cynical ID cards bill — and more importantly, now, the Abolition of Parliament bill — with him.

Labour shouldn’t be dealing in peerages at all, of course: except to abolish them. Sadly the time when Labour might possibly have abolished peerages — or even significantly democratised the upper house — seem long ago and far away, now. May 1997 feels like another time in another world. True, we knew that ‘New’ Labour wasn’t going to be the real Labour that we wanted; but it was dawn after the long Tory night, and there was a mood of optimism in the air.

I got up on the morning after the election and put Billy Bragg records on, in celebration. Though admittedly one of the tracks was ‘Ideology’, which warns about the dark side of politics.

And how dark that side has turned out to be. It strikes me as slightly ironic that the Abolition of Parliament bill should be starting to come into higher visibility at the same time as the film version of V For Vendetta has just come out.

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