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Milliband’s problem

Leader of the opposition Labour Party EdThis is not a political blog but any aspect of business or finance is inevitably affected by political decisions and with an election looming, future policy is very much on many peoples mind. For many in business, the present Labour leader certainly raises many concerns


Labour is never going to be the natural “party of business” but at the same time, the major political parties do need to reach across divides if they are to win what will be tight contest. Milliband’s continual and almost seemingly obsessive refusal to engage with business on any level strikes me as being either extremely naive or simply driven by dogma

His predecessors, Blair and Brown dropped the word enterprise into every speech at every opportunity and there were various pro business initiatives. Milliband is politically more to the left and it might also be explained that he is from a certain community which is perhaps rather sniffy about “trade”.

No he is no aristocrat but the north London self styled intellectual sect is probably about as disengaged from the average South London car dealer or midlands factory owner as you can get.

Other than that, I cannot find another explanation. There may well be some hostility to big business in the uk but on the whole the country is geared towards enterprise both culturally and politically. The british tend to respect the “self made man” more than we would see in other cultures. The economy is strong and the electorate is well aware that much of this is based on and reflected in the SME sector. Furthermore a very high proportion of the workforce are employed by SMEs and they will naturally be concerned about policy affecting their prospects

Milliband appears to be more concerned with shoring up his support in the Public sector than reaching out and that will not get him elected. Even the hard left Ken Livingstone used to give some remarkably positive and perceptive business friendly speeches. This resonates and Milliband seriously needs to think again

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