Letter from John Christie, Oxfordshire County Councillor, Banbury Ruscote
Councillor Mallon (Banbury Guardian 27 November ) attacks me personally for the third time for pointing out that praying in aid of patriotism in a political argument is according to Dr Johnson “the last refuge of the scoundrel”. He seems to imply that I am sneering at working class people in doing so.
I was simply responding to his initial unprovoked smear that Labour was being unpatriotic in wanting devolution of powers to English cities and counties rather than powers being reserved to English MPs in Westminster. Those who accuse others of a lack of patriotism for palpably party political reasons should expect to have their motives questioned.
Labour has always fought against inequality and sought to improve the prospects of working class people. Labour is opposed to the current Government’s policies which work against those prospects :- Bedroom Tax, discriminatory benefit cuts to poor and disabled people, cuts to local services for adult and children’s social care, perverse NHS re-organisation, zero hours contracts and job insecurity.
We need new powers for Local Government and a reformed fair tax system. I am glad that Oxfordshire County Council along with 114 other Councils has now expressed this view to the Government.
What we get from Councillor Mallon is childish name-calling and preposterous fantasies of him as a class warrior leading the charge in his white van. I am not sure what he is getting at in trumpeting his past background and making obscure comments about where I live.
My working class roots have led me to support the Labour Party which has stuck up for the working classes for the past 114 years, not a party which exists to shrink the state and transfer wealth from the poor to the rich.
Letter from Chris Farman, Deddington
What exquisite irony that Cllr Mallon’s letter (Banbury Guardian, November 27) criticising Labour for its ‘sneering and patronising’ attitude towards the working class should have been published in the very same week the spotlight fell on the Mitchell and Mellor show.
First, the so-called ‘Plebgate’ saga reached its climax, with the High Court finding that Andrew Mitchell, the former Tory chief whip, had, indeed, berated the policeman on duty at the entrance to Downing Street as a ‘******* pleb’.
Then it was revealed David Mellor, also a former Tory minister, had indulged in a foul-mouthed rant against a London cabbie.
Or have I got it all wrong?
Perhaps such behaviour is actually the eccentric Tory way of paying tribute to the working class.