Thursday, June 22, 2006

Brown goes nuclear

From the beeb:
"Gordon Brown has signalled that he wants to keep and renew Britain's independent nuclear deterrent."
The piece goes on to say Gordon Brown's intervention has "enraged critics" by which is meant leftwing Labour MPs who were opposed to Trident in the first place.

Don't they ever learn? By this I mean that one could be forgiven for thinking the sole function of the left in the Labour party is for the leadership to distinguish themselves from them, so as to appeal to right-of-centre voters and Fleet Street.

The Labour left are often silly and oppositionist for its own sake, although on this issue and others such as education I think they happen to be right. But in the case of nukes, there's not a lot of point making a fuss about it. After all, they've already accepted by default the notion that Britain should have an independent nuclear deterrent and if you're going to have one, it's going to need upgrading from time to time.

Their real opposition to this announcement stems from their opposition to nuclear weapons as such. It's a position I happen to share but think any effort to sell this to the leadership is pretty futile. Gordon Brown represents a constitutional innovation for both the Labour party and the country - a Prime Minister designate. And doesn't it show? It's like the Kinnock years all over again. Only less so.

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