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The Labour Party and Unemployment

The I.L.P. in Parliament

 It is argued on behalf of the I.L.P. that their propaganda methods are justified by their success. As proof of this they point to a relatively large membership and to the fact that more than 200 of their members are Labour Party M.P.'s. How hollow is this success can be seen from the inability of the I.L.P. to control its members in the House of Commons. Mr. Maxton, Chairman of the I.L.P., criticised the Labour Government’s Unemployment Insurance . Bill, and threatened to oppose its second reading. The prompt result, as reported in the Daily Herald of November 19th, was that,

    between 50 and 60 I.L.P. M.P.s last night signed a memorial repudiating the right of the I.L.P. officials to speak on their behalf.

The Labour Party Conference

 Under the chairmanship of Mr. Herbert Morrison, M.P., the 29th Annual Conference of the Labour Party was held at Brighton during early October.

 The Conference was the first to be held during the lifetime of a Labour Government, and the criticisms, therefore, were levelled at their own colleagues.

Editorial: The Labour Party Betrays The Unemployed

 None of the three parties, Liberal, Labour, Conservative, has solved or can solve the problem of unemployment. All three stand for capitalism, with only minor disagreements on policy and administration, and unemployment cannot be abolished while capitalism remains. But in addition to making promises which they could not fulfil, each has also promised to make the condition of the unemployed ‘‘tolerable.” This they could do, and have all failed to do. The Labour Party was, and is, particularly forward in parading its sympathy with the innocent victims of capitalism, and in the present House of Commons some Labour M.P.'s have attacked a new regulation which will deny unemployment pay to many who have been out of work the longest. To their protests on this, as on nearly every other matter, the Conservatives are able to reply by pointing out that they are only continuing the policy of the Labour Party when it was in office.

The Labour Party and the Unemployed

Labour Statesmanship

The question of unemployment was the first to occupy the preliminary conference of the Labour Party at Hull. “Important” speeches were made by the “statesmen of labour," and a no less “important” resolution was passed.

Mr. Pete Curran said: “Until we are in a position to utilise the legislative machinery of the country for the purpose of curtailing the income of the rich who are in possession, and in adding to the income of the poor, we shall never solve the unemployed problem.”

Mr. J. R. MacDonald, in moving the important resolution said: “Unemployment was now part and parcel of our industrial system; it was produced by the system with the same certainty and accuracy with which the industrial system produced profits.”

Mr. O’Grady in seconding that resolution .said: “The present industrial system was a machine turning out profits on the one hand and unemployed on the other. It was inevitable that it must be so.”

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