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By Stewart Lansley

The prior decade has noticeable remarkable upheavals in neighborhood govt. From being a political backwater, neighborhood councils became the battleground for a conflict of ideologies among Left-led neighborhood gurus and a Right-wing govt rationale on curtailing their powers. This e-book info the adventure of the Left in controlling numerous of the most important neighborhood councils within the land and examines either the successes and screw ups of this test in municipal socialism. It means that the profits from this adventure were underestimated and that there's nonetheless strength for additional good fortune, regardless of the novel legislative programme introduced in by means of Mrs Thatcher's 3rd govt.

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You now occupy a position not too far from what we used to call the 'fake left'. Your talk is a great deal more left than your actions .... Instead of preparing for confrontation you have turned the local council into a major school of reformist class collaboration. To his opponents on the Left, Knight appeared to want it both ways. He maintained close links with the revolutionary Left and constantly used the rhetoric of class struggle. Sympathetic to their fundamental ideology, he subsequently advocated a similar 'confrontational' strategy in the battle over ratecapping.

With his plans coming unstuck, an irate Heseltine took steps to tighten the system with the introduction of 'targets and penalties'. On top of their GREAs, councils were given individual spending targets related to actual spending and were penalised by progressively larger withdrawals of grant if they exceeded them. These penalties were introduced in 198112, and then gradually tightened. Even then, the changes failed to achieve the desired result. Most of the high spending councils losing grant were Labour-controlled, and with the increasing influence of the new Left, there was a growing determination to thwart the government's plans even at the price of much higher rates.

Takeover In the 1982 local elections, Labour did relatively poorly in London, failing to regain any of the three boroughs it had lost in 1978- Ealing, Wandsworth and Hillingdon- and losing control, for a time, of Lambeth. But the Left within the party was much more successful, thanks in part to Jeremy Corbyn's Target 82 22 Councils in Conflict campaign. The Left's arguments for greater accountability of members to their parties had been greatly strengthened by the defections to the SDP. The Left took over, or made sizeable inroads, in Camden, Greenwich, Hackney, Lewisham and Southwark.

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