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REDS - LCD special
by Barrabas - May 2003

The sleepy backwater that is the Lord Chancellor’s Department (Lord Irvine of Lairg’s mob) has rarely figured large in the annals of PCS or its predecessors, with the possible exception of the risible attempt by the useless Albert ASTBURY to win the presidency of CPSA on the old Broad Left ticket. However, the PFL’s ace agents have recently uncovered political shenanigans on the GEC.

Since the merger the Group has had a GEC dominated by a bloc of ex-BL’84, UNITY and Me First timeservers. This coalition has been highly successful in bagging the votes. Over last two years they’ve made clean sweeps over their LCD LUNITY opponents. This year the coalition thought they would carry on as before. But the group received a bit of a shock at their meeting during the January GEC when they heard a statement from Garry WINDER to the effect that a number of them could no longer stay in the group and would be leaving with immediate effect. The statement that was read out failed to shed any light on their reasoning and subsequently two Assistant Secretaries - Glenys MORRIS & Tony WARDLE, plus two GEC members - Garry WINDUP & Geoff LYUS and the Group President - Dave CUNNINGHAM walked out.

At the time, despite many rumours to the contrary, they denied having had talks with LUNITY but subsequently it became clear that they had formed what they call "an Alliance" with the Left. Well, some of the left because LU in LCD was split down the middle by this “alliance” and a number of LUNITY leading lights like Dave VINCENT have refused to stand in this year’s elections. As you can imagine when "friends" fall out this has been the dirtiest campaign ever with all sorts of allegations being made.

Why would a little squabble like this interest the general membership? Well, we’re all off to the NEC ballots soon, and a little bit of information on the candidates which you won’t find in election addresses always comes in handy: In the past MORRIS and WINDUP were always totally opposed to LUNITY and all its works and they made any number of attacks on them both inside and outside the GEC. Now we find that not only are they on the same slate for the GEC elections but a quick glance at the National LU/PCSD slate reveals that GLENYS is their VP candidate and with GARRY standing for the NEC.

Great expectations

Multitudes have asked the question “Wherefore is the slate of the Moderati? Has Bunter eaten it thinking it a cream bun?” and many believe it to be nought but the sick fantasy of a deranged fat loon.

Does it actually exist? Yes and No: it exists in a secret form at the moment. It will only properly exist when they see how many of their chosen actually get nominated -- the Moderati theory being that you should be able to get nominated by your own branch. This is the traditional, secretive, last-minute Mod nomination process. They could always muster a few puppet branch nominations in the past - in contrast to the Trot preference for weighing nominations, the Mods philosophy is that one is enough. As Judas rightly points out, they like the maximum flexibility to fine-tune the list after close of nominations; a tactic which has, in the past, worked well with the not-terribly-covert insider assistance of a succession of Moderati placemen. Whether they can pull the rabbit out of the hat under the Serwotka regime, we wait to see.

Others have posed the conundrum “Will the Monk of Madness sup with the devil of the Moderati and throw his hood into the ring for the Presidency?” Again the answer is Yes and No: PRIESTLEY is definitely standing as President - as an Independent backed by the Mods. He says if they want to back him that's up to them but he's not promising them anything.

He doesn’t need to. He’s the only bet in town for the Moddies today. They can’t even find a volunteer amongst their own to stand against GODRICH. But that alone won’t give the MAD MONK the prize he’s coveted all his life. Trouble is poor old Les still hasn't fully grasped the fact that PCS contains ex-CPSA activists who've been there before and got the diseases. But he’s learning. Rumour has it that PRIESTLEY is sounding out his old MF chums in the UNDY camp to see if they would use their influence to sway members behind him in the presidential challenge to Madame Pompidour. And the quid pro quo? Well let’s see who else is on the Moderati list after the nominations close…

At least McGOWAN has apparently developed a sense of humour, or at least a stammer, in his last days. In his Group Election address he says "we've got the worst pay deal in the Civil Service but we don't have to wear ties. We've got the worse FT agreement but we don't have to wear ties. We've got the worst Industrial relations record but we don't have to ...................... etc etc. Have PCS in the DWP got their priorities wrong? - but we don't have to wear ties." Who said satire was dead?