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Monday
Feb162015

Ecotricity and the Labour Party

I am not now, and never have been a member of any political party.

I’ve also never been a member of a sports team, a stamp collectors club, a private London gentleman’s club or any sort of club.

I’m just not club membership material.

However it’s the political party membership I’m always relieved to have avoided.

Imagine how uncomfortable it would be if, say as a Labour Party member you supported the Blair Government of 1997.

Then this wonderful smiling man prayed to some sort of God who told him to invade a country that was no danger to the UK and as a result the meltdown in that area has made everything much, much worse.

Now, that’s the obvious, unfathomable uber-fail of the Blair administration, but it wasn’t all bad.

I want to inform those not old enough to remember, under the previous bunch of dodgy Tory posh boys there were thousands of homeless people living on the streets, hospitals were crumbling, we had massive unemployment and our social infrastructure was on its knees.

The Labour party made a progressive and undeniable difference, the social fabric improved immeasurably, you could see the changes taking place and we are now surrounded by new schools, hospitals and urban infrastructure improvements that took place under the Blair-Brown stewardship.

But they did invade Iraq, they did allow unfettered, semi criminal or actual criminal banking practices and during this period I am suggesting that the Labour Party became completely absorbed into the military industrial complex.

Contrary to current Tory spin, big business is fine with Labour because the New Labour party poses no threat to big business.

The Labour party was founded over a hundred years ago by ordinary working people to try and bring some balance to a brutal, paternalistic, sexist, racist, homophobic bigoted social order.

The Labour party was radical, they challenged the status quo, the minority ruling elite hated them, corporate bosses and the press hated them but they didn’t give a toss.

When they finally came to power after WW2 they changed the political and social landscape forever.

I voted for Tony Blair in 1997, I was pleased as punch when he got in and that feeling of euphoria lasted, ooh, weeks.

Because Blair and his corporate cronies had worked out that to hold on to power they had to do deals with the truly powerful, most importantly the banking industry and energy companies.

The Labour party are happy to go along with these massive multinational corporations because they ‘secure jobs’ and ‘keep the lights on.’

They are also the big muscle behind fracking, massive coal extraction, dodgy deals with Putin for gas, even dodgier deals with the Saudi regime for oil and gas.

The world is changing fast, more and more people are becoming aware of where our fuels come from and are feeling more and more uncomfortable about it, but the Labour Party seem deaf to these changes.

Technological developments are changing the face of the energy matrix. Renewables are now increasing at unprecedented rates and are already cheaper than fossil alternative and will become increasingly cheaper. Energy storage systems are coming on line which will make relying on 100% renewables a perfectly plausible alternative.

New companies like Ecotricity who are developing these systems are having a greater and greater impact. Not only do they produce their power purely from renewables, they were also the first people to create a nationwide rapid charge network for electric cars.

A large section of their customer base are people who are very well informed about the energy industry, people who made a deliberate decision to avoid the big six and go with someone different.

When you pay your Ecotricity bill you know you are not paying for imported coal, fracked ‘natural gas’ or the Conservative Party.

Many Ecotricity customers are either members of or supporters of the Green Party. When you sign up to be an Ecotricity customer, they donate £60 to the Green Party. It says so clearly on their website.

All good stuff until recently it was announced that Ecotricity had donated a quarter of a million quid to the Labour party.

Many people were up in arms, not surprising really as the Labour Party are so pro fracking. Yes, okay, with increased ‘safety and environmental controls’ but they have fallen for the corporate hype.

Now I should reveal here that I have had a long and close relationship with Ecotricity, I am a big admirer of Dale Vince and I think what he and the people in the company have achieved is nothing short of miraculous.

Ecotricity sponsored last years Fully Charged series, their anti fracking adverts are funny and pull no punches.

But the Labour party, although resisting the open season on fracking the extraction industry is enjoying with the bankers in Parliament at present, they didn’t resist the changes to trespass laws which mean the fracking industry can extract ‘cheap gas’ from right under your house.

The Labour Party are pro fracking, that’s all there is to it.

However, if Labour do somehow manage to secure a majority in the forthcoming election I would readily agree that they are far more likely to be open to the notion of wind, wave and solar power and far less keen of fracking the living shit out of every corner of the British Isles.

The Labour party won’t be kowtowing to the UKIPers who’s grasp of global events is, at best, moronic. They are more likely to be influenced by the Greens because that’s where they’re loosing most votes.

So maybe what Ecotricity have done is rather clever.

I hope so.

 

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Reader Comments (7)

So it's a tactical move to protect the business; but at what cost? By the over 700 comments on the ecotricity Facebook page announcing this, many customer have left, or are switching to. Good Energy.

Fast Forward to May; Labour, at best, lose slightly. There are a dozen green and UKIp MPs. Dale will have backed the losing horse to protect his business and lost. The customer base, who were pleading with Dale to donate to the Green Party, will be wondering how many more MPs the Green Party could have got with that kind of donation.

And then moving forward, ecotricity have to try and convince people to pay a preiumim to switch to a renewable energy supplier but future customers will look at this donation to labour and feel uneasy. Why didn't Dale split the donation between Labour and the Green Party? I'd much rather see an issue by issue parliament with parties like the Greens keeping the corporate funded big boys accountable.

As a now ex ecotricity customer I have lost respect for Dale and ecotricity. In a very small action I directly donated to the Green Party's crowdfunding effort to fund as many deposits in as many MPs in the General Election and was delighted to see that yesterday it met this goal.

So by donating to Labour thousands of people are now joining and supporting The Green Party. Just liked the Unions that pay for Labour and the Bankers that support the Conservatives Dale has become another cooperate propping up one of the two main parties. And the people who crave change and still have the morale desire for a fairer, more positive country, are joining, donating and spreading the word of the Green Party, compelled by such shallow action.

February 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterGrant Thomas

Grant, the Greens have little to no chance of getting more than one or two MPs, especially due to our broken voting system. In some constituencies, a Labour or Lib Dem voter switching to the Greens raises the likelihood of getting a Conservative MP. Ecotricity's onshore wind plans are seriously threatened by the prospect of a Tory government, in this light it makes perfect sense to donate to Labour, although they should have given more thought to the inevitable backlash.

February 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew Gillett

Nice share. I think your website should come up much higher in the search results than where it is showing up right now….

February 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterAndrey

In my view a private individual can hold any political belief they want, and donate whatever they like out of their own pocket. I believe it is fundamentally wrong for a business to provide funding to political parties. It creates an air of distrust. I like Ecotricity and what they are doing. They are a modern innovative company. They have fallen in my estimation by donating to a political party. Dale Vince should be free to do as he wishes as a private individual, but a company should remain politically agnostic!

March 14, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterTim Wyatt

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