Editorial policy statement.

Position:Modernising Labour Party - Brief article

Three successive election victories make it appear as if the task of renewing Labour has been well and truly achieved, and in one sense it has. The party has changed itself and in doing so has refashioned British politics, shifting ideas and practices to create the possibilities for centre-left hegemony for many years to come. But they remain just that, possibilities.

Set up in 1993 in the wake of Labour's fourth successive general election defeat, Renewal has published a wide range of influential articles to create an open and pluralistic forum for all shades of the progressive and modernising left to debate ideas and policies.

For us, this project was only incidentally about modernising Labour. The wider goal was to revitalise the historic purpose of social democracy--to expand the scope of equality, democratic governance and social freedoms within regulated markets. The collapse of the post-war settlement created a crisis of strategy and vision. Real modernisation is about the process of reconnecting and reshaping those goals in new social, economic and political contexts. It is against the template of an egalitarian, pluralist, socially liberal and internationalist politics that we evaluate the policies and practices of Labour or indeed any organisation. In this context, the record of New Labour is decidedly patchy. There has been progress on the democratic and...

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