Wednesday, December 22, 2010

No shit, Sherlock!

at the insistence of Simon I believe that it should be mentioned that I am no longer a member of the Labour Party.
I have previously explained why I joined in the first place; Labour's defeat in the election wiped out that reason, however I did not leave, reasoning that there were grounds to believe that opposition to the condems might be found from within Labour; that proved to be an illusion.

I had thought about a grandstanding letter of resignation, as if my actions or beliefs would have the slightest influence over 'Bland and the hard hitting parliamentary opposition that he leads(?) so well(?).
instead I simply allowed my membership lapse and got on with the business of opposing the Condemmers.
There was no actual "right, thats enough I'm out!" moment, in fact the total absence of anything at all from the Labour party throughout the summer and autumn in terms of oppostion was the largest factor in my decision. Once the autumn came and the local council cuts were being announced our local party's response was: a fully worked out proposal for an alternative agenda of cuts.
the failure of Labour to do anything but condemn the student protests was unsurprising, but their alibiing of Liberals (in the hope of enticing some across to their ranks) as prisoners of the conservatives rather than as the enthusiastic instigators of the cuts agenda stinks of cynical helplessness.
The student protesters, and especially the EMA kids, have done more in a few weeks to break the Coalition than 'Bland Labour has in 9 months.

Friday, December 10, 2010

scaring the horses








OH! pleasant exercise of hope and joy!
For mighty were the auxiliars which then stood
Upon our side, we who were strong in love!
Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive,
But to be young was very heaven!--Oh! times,
In which the meagre, stale, forbidding ways
Of custom, law, and statute, took at once
The attraction of a country in romance!
When Reason seemed the most to assert her rights,
When most intent on making of herself
A prime Enchantress--to assist the work,
Which then was going forward in her name!
Not favoured spots alone, but the whole earth,
The beauty wore of promise, that which sets
(As at some moment might not be unfelt
Among the bowers of paradise itself)
The budding rose above the rose full blown.
What temper at the prospect did not wake
To happiness unthought of? The inert
Were roused, and lively natures rapt away!
They who had fed their childhood upon dreams,
The playfellows of fancy, who had made
All powers of swiftness, subtilty, and strength
Their ministers,--who in lordly wise had stirred
Among the grandest objects of the sense,
And dealt with whatsoever they found there
As if they had within some lurking right
To wield it;--they, too, who, of gentle mood,
Had watched all gentle motions, and to these
Had fitted their own thoughts, schemers more mild,
And in the region of their peaceful selves;--
Now was it that both found, the meek and lofty
Did both find, helpers to their heart's desire,
And stuff at hand, plastic as they could wish;
Were called upon to exercise their skill,
Not in Utopia, subterranean fields,
Or some secreted island, Heaven knows where!
But in the very world, which is the world
Of all of us,--the place where in the end
We find our happiness, or not at all!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Muriel Morris is our friend, is our friend.. she makes sarnies

hats off to Muriel Morris, who has single handed put off the streets and into the kharzi 50 of Birmingham police's finest porkies.
as the PA reports:
A pensioner whose sandwiches poisoned 47 police officers has been given a suspended jail sentence and ordered to obey a one-month night-time curfew.


Food safety officials said 70-year-old Muriel Morris received a four-month jail term, suspended for a year, and was ordered to pay £16,482.70p in costs.

Birmingham City Council, which prosecuted Morris for four breaches of food hygiene law, launched an investigation into the poisoning outbreak after nine officers were taken to hospital during an English Defence League demonstration near New Street station in July 2009.

The city's magistrates' court heard that tests conducted on the sandwiches established they had been provided by Morris, of Dorrington Green, Great Barr, Birmingham.

Morris pleaded guilty to four offences relating to the Meal Machine cafe in Nechells, which she no longer runs.

An investigation by the council's food safety team established that officers were given sandwiches provided by Meal Machine at three briefings during the EDL protest and a counter-demonstration.

A West Midlands Police spokesman confirmed that 47 officers experienced the effects of sickness, with several requiring hospital treatment for dehydration.

"Contingency planning measures were implemented to ensure that normal policing business could continue as the protest came to an end," the spokesman said.

Commenting on the prosecution, Neil Eustace, chairman of Birmingham's Public Protection Committee, said officers had been left extremely ill by the serious offences.

"Environmental health officers were rightly appalled by the lack of regard for the health of customers shown by Ms Morris and moved quickly to shut the premises," he said.

nice one. And Bon Appetit!
thanks to mrs redstar who still doesn't trust Tuna

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Fitwatch 1 MET 0


Fitwatch is back, better and secure from arbitary state repression
check it out here: http://www.fitwatch.org.uk/

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Lifeform to wed lifeform



I genuinley believed that I had matured, that long gone were the days when I proudly wore my 'Noddy marries big ears' badge and laughed at the 'Parasite marries Scrounger' headlines; after all, decades have passed, William actually seems to be doing a job ( although having Granny as his boss probably means never having to worry about being late in on a Monday).
Kate Middleton even comes into the supermarket that I work at (My mate is always pointing her out to me though up to now I didn't know who she was.).
However it is now less than 8 hours since the engagement was announced, and I realise that we are facing another 8 FUCKING MONTHS OF THIS SHIT!!!
Bring on the Guillotine

Stop the Internet repression- defend Fitwatch

This is the piece which led to the Fitwatch website being suspended – please circulate spartacus style (lifted from jonnyvoid and available everywhere;-))

The remarkable and brilliant student action at Millbank has produced some predictable frothing at the mouth from the establishment and right wing press. Cameron has called for the ‘full weight of the law’ to fall on those who had caused tens of thousands of pounds of damage to the expensive decor at Tory party HQ. Responsibility is being placed on ‘a violent faction’, after the march was ‘infiltrated’ by anarchists.
There are an encouraging number of intiatives to show solidarity with the arrested students – something that is vital if they are to avoid the sort of punitive ‘deterrent’ sentences handed out to the Gaza demonstrators. A legal support group has been established and the National Campaign against Cuts and Fees has started a support campaign. Goldsmiths lecturers union has publicly commended the students for a ‘magnificent demonstration’ .
This is all much needed, as the establishment is clearly on the march with this one. The Torygraph has published an irresponsible and frenzied ‘shop-a-student’ piece and the Met are clearly under pressure to produce ‘results’ after what they have admitted was a policing ‘embarrassment’.

51 people have been arrested so far, and the police have claimed they took the details of a further 250 people in the kettle using powers under the Police Reform Act. There may be more arrests to come.

Students who are worried should consider taking the following actions:

If you have been arrested, or had your details taken – contact the legal support campaign. As a group you can support each other, and mount a coherent campaign.

If you fear you may be arrested as a result of identification by CCTV, FIT or press photography;

DONT panic. Press photos are not necessarily conclusive evidence, and just because the police have a photo of you doesn’t mean they know who you are.
DONT hand yourself in. The police often use the psychological pressure of knowing they have your picture to persuade you to ‘come forward’. Unless you have a very pressing reason to do otherwise, let them come and find you, if they know who you are.
DO get rid of your clothes. There is no chance of suggesting the bloke in the video is not you if the clothes he is wearing have been found in your wardrobe. Get rid of ALL clothes you were wearing at the demo, including YOUR SHOES, your bag, and any distinctive jewellery you were wearing at the time. Yes, this is difficult, especially if it is your only warm coat or decent pair of boots. But it will be harder still if finding these clothes in your flat gets you convicted of violent disorder.
DONT assume that because you can identify yourself in a video, a judge will be able to as well. ‘That isn’t me’ has got many a person off before now.
DO keep away from other demos for a while. The police will be on the look-out at other demos, especially student ones, for people they have put on their ‘wanted’ list. Keep a low profile.
DO think about changing your appearance. Perhaps now is a good time for a make-over. Get a haircut and colour, grow a beard, wear glasses. It isn’t a guarantee, but may help throw them off the scent.
DO keep your house clean. Get rid of spray cans, demo related stuff, and dodgy texts / photos on your phone. Don’t make life easy for them by having drugs, weapons or anything illegal in the house.
DO get the name and number of a good lawyer you can call if things go badly. The support group has the names of recommended lawyers on their site. Take a bit of time to read up on your rights in custody, especially the benefits of not commenting in interview.
DO be careful who you speak about this to. Admit your involvement in criminal damage / disorder ONLY to people you really trust.
DO try and control the nerves and panic. Waiting for a knock on the door is stressful in the extreme, but you need to find a way to get on with business as normal. Otherwise you’ll be serving the sentence before you are even arrested.

This post is also available on google at: http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:qv4goBQOpDYJ:www.fitwatch.org.uk/+fitwatch&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=uk&client=firefox-a

Monday, November 15, 2010

Honouring the dead, pissing on the living

Yesterday we went up to Brock Barracks to take part in the Remembrance Service.
Among the local military and civic groups laying wreaths at the monument were two shady types in dark suits:
Rob Wilson MP and Alok Sharma MP- the Conservative MPs for Reading East and West Respectively.
Whilst they made show of paying their respects for the dead of Britains wars, they and the Government they support are pissing on the living.
The Government has announced that rises in Army pensions; which includes payments to widows and those maimed will now on be linked to the Consumer Price Index, rather than the Retail Price Index that had previously been the case.
By not including housing costs in the calculations: "The Forces Pensions Society calculates that the change, which affects forces pensions and annual Guaranteed Income Payments, means a 34-year-old wife of a staff sergeant killed in Afghanistan, for example, would be almost £750,000 worse off over the course of her lifetime.

A corporal who lost both legs in a bomb blast would miss out on about £500,000 in pension and benefit-related payments"
the Government responds by declaring that MoD pensioners should not be treated differently from the rest of the public sector.
This must be a great comfort when having ones limbs blown off by a IUD in Helmond.

We have no demands to make of NUS president Aaron Porter except to FOAD. Behold your future executioners.


A guest post from Capt. Bollocks
The demonstration against the government cuts to education and the raising of the cap on student fees jointly organised by the NUS and lecturer’s unions (UCU) on November 10th lead news reports that day and many following days.

The demonstration was officially a response just to the attacks on higher learning in England and Wales. It has gained a wider significance as the attacks on the students (and their parents) have been seen as the rolling back on the state providing for the needs of all its citizens. Initially the organisers expected about 8000 to attend which would have a good turnout for what the NUS have organised for about 20 years. Due to zeitgeist (spirit of the times) the demonstration obtained far larger numbers despite the NUS’s inability to organise a piss up in a brewery.
An occupation of the Tory party central offices in Millbank had been planned by London Anarchist students and successfully executed. The march had finished 10 minutes from the conservative party offices. Word went round amongst some of the demonstrators to make their way to the Tory and Lib-Dem offices while most people where heading that way to get transport. The students outside the building then had to make a conscious effort to choose to remain there. The crowd had not been co-opted by the Anarchists. If anyone was co-opted, it was the Anarchists being co-opted by the students. The crowd rallied to call. While maybe not quite the storming of the Winter Palace it was still a great inspiration to those who are sick of us living on our knees. (little joke here- you should get on your knees for someone you love- and certainly do not love our government and bosses).
SUBSERVIENT
The NUS condemned the action of the demonstrators as soon as they happened. They condemned the action not just because of its lawlessness and but also because of their subservient nature. The leadership of the NUS does not want wider links to be made to other government cuts. They think university students should be considered a special case. They see themselves and other students as middle class people who can appeal to government’s shared middle class identity. They are out of kilter with a vast number of students who have working class identities.
What would the NUS leadership consider a success in the campaign against proposed government changes? The government to look at the figurers again, so as to make some minor adjustments. Better still for the NUS would be the new system of fee’s only being payable for new students. Just like many a trade union allows new workers to be employed on contracts that give the new workers poorer conditions or ruminations. The history of the NUS is about as woeful as can be imagined. Many of the people attending the demonstration are youngsters from pre-university age. Does the NUS seek to organise the future users? Of course not. Their interests may conflict with those of present students. The NUS wants to see its members as individuals with atomised interests not part of a wider society. This seems more than a bit cheeky as they want wider society to pay for their education. The wider working class doesn’t mind paying for education if it is provided reasonably broadly and working class kids a chance to improve themselves.
The last thing that appears to be on the mind of NUS leadership is defending the students arrested on that day, those students are representative of those who wish to rise up against the government attacks on our standards of living. The only interests the NUS leadership represent is their own, they have been shown to hold their membership in content and seem to have little regard for them when facing the adversity of having a criminal record.
Motions
The leadership of NUS is only interested of appearing to go through the motions, god forbid anyone take protest seriously. Their middle class sensibility views militant action as uncouth. Mr Porter has proposed more lobbying and regards the behaviour on the 10th November as something that will undermine his ability to have a quite discussion over a glass of port with Tory ministers. Any concessions will still turn university fees into a massive milestone to any working class and many class middle people who attempt to go to university.

The BBC made the ridiculous accusation to the student’s president of University of London of having no right to be at the demonstration as she is not a student, not a charge the BBC have levelled at Aaron Porter. This line of questioning was only directed at those who supported unlawful actions. The BBC and leading newspapers partially the Sun, Mail and Telegraph have been at pains to give the impression that it was not students who were motivated for confrontation but the usual suspects. The witch hunt which has been called for by the likes of Boris Johnson has had energetic support from such reactionary toilet paper producers. The campaign to grass working class heroes has not met with complete success as many bogus identifications have been sent to the narks of our establishment. We can expect no impartiality from the likes of these lickspittles.
naivete
The most disappointing aspect of the day for partisans of the working class has been the amount of arrests. While much pluck was shown by the young, there was a far degree of naivety was on display.
It is a time for the lessons of past to passed onto a new generation.
*It was depressing to see Tory party workers photographing and filming protestors who had failed to masked-up. It was always found back in the nineties effective to explain calmly that we and our friends did not give permission to have photo’s taken; And that not respecting our wishes would at a minimum lead to a broken camera. The BBC seemed to think they deserved special licence – we explained this was not the case.
*Hoods came into fashion as CCTV came into fashion.
*Just like the Police we chose to dress the same as one another.
*Those folk who stand around, they also give good service to the cause, not everybody is the sort who can get ‘stuck in’. But they need to hide the combative folk and not give sucker to the grasses who only seek respectability.

Rebellion and defiance will never be respectable for such folk, they accept the ruling class ideology usually through having an uncritical nature.

Most NUS branches are no more than drinking clubs for frat boy and girl boorish sports team member’s and a training ground for those who see a role for themselves in middle management. Many SU’s even ban the discussion of politics at their meeting. While almost all the leaders of NUS see themselves as our potential ruling class. One year Jack Straw is enjoying a big joint as NUS president and then in government he is criminalising huge swaths of the population and dumping them in prison. There has been a move by the NUS leadership to keep parents out of the campaign against the government cuts, such professionals are trying to keep people out that will have knowledge of how such organisations are run, so they can maintain their control and manage protest for their own careerist ends.
Demonstrators need to be careful not to up the ante in unwise fashion. We also have a duty of care to the wider public. That is why we could claim with pride when the police accused May Day demonstrators of endangering the public that no workers got hurt when shops got done over on the May Day events. While we can show how the police brutality not only ups the ante but kills people going home from work and going to work on the tube. The lad who through the fire extinguisher from the roof was being rather silly and his comrades should have prevented him from doing it. The crowd did call on the occupiers to stop throwing things and they did stop. This shows how the occupiers where not about acting wily-nilly without regard to the concerns of those who showed solidarity with their actions.
Revolutionaries should not let themselves me held back by the passive but they should show due regard to those they seek to appeal to. This is also one of the important reasons that protestors who wish to be combative need to have friends around them that they can trust, in a crisis only the people than have a personal bond will generally look out for you while there is chaos around them. This is best way of preventing yourself from doing anything silly, getting arrested or badly hurt.

*Then there are the silly little bits of know how- like kicking the windows in at the corners not the middle.
*Having clothing that does not mark you out but can be turned into a disguise later is handy.
* Or how the police when trying to ‘kettle’ a demonstration walk into people’s body space so they instinctively move back, people need to show the self awareness and resist this behaviour of the police.
* A police shield can be a two-way tool- and is a very amusing way of giving someone a bad day.
Fruit Cakes and Ketamine
What I would have loved to have seen is a five day rave with every fruit cake in London out of head on ketamine or poison of choice all in the way of the police like a sea of zombies, so the police could not give the Tories back the building. As Jasper Carrot pointed out many years ago- they all used to hang around with the lefties because they had the best grass.
Students will not learn such lesson from their lecturers. Universities and schools are to teach you how to be a productive exploitable unit with just enough thinking power to make more profits for the ruling class. It is not to teach you how to over throw the masters. That does not mean we cannot take lessons and reapply them to a different agenda. Students you will not read the answers you need in the sort of academic books that university consider suitable to for referencing, unless your studying riot control maybe...
Your Lecturers are not qualified to teach you to protest.
When those who critise the ‘violence’ and to be honest there was very little, the reply is, far more is deserved for the Tory party and the police. We will always attempt to get away with what we can if we see it as not counter-productive to our cause. It is generally the nature of British people not to make a fuss and a scene. The government will keep pushing back our privileges and that is all our ‘rights’ are if we are unprepared to defend them.
When the TUC say we need to be more like France or Greece all they mean is safe meaningless demos and strikes that go through the motions. What distinguishes those combative proud working classes from us in the UK is that they know it means occupations and not letting the police push you around with a wave of their hand or stick.
Let’s face it being prepared to stand up for ourselves collectively and refusing to be pushed around is the only language they will only ever listen to. Bullies and thieves do not back down after some meek pleading. The meek will inherit nothing. They will drive us to soup kitchens and begging if they the government can get away with it.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

redemanding the impossible!

over the past year or so I have somewhat drifted into the realms of respectability and possiblism, allowing my distaste for Trotskyism and dispair at the collapse of the Left to lead me into accepting in some measure the political perspectives of Reformism (even, as I am sure comrades will be sure of constantly reminding me for years to come, taking up a Labour Party Card in the run up to the last election).
However, fickle creature that I am, it does not take much to bring me back to sanity, one afternoon of inspired direct action from the kids has me reembracing the old black flag and spurning the tempations(?) of 'Bland Labour (To be truthful, I voted for Balls, both for the slogan opportunities, and as he appeared the only one who actually seemed to understand the need to Oppose the bastards).
I think that a major cause of my slide into despair has been my 'addiction' to two of the more baleful sites available on the interweb- socialist unity blog and harrys place. SU blog was formed by a group of former SWP members who came together in the socialist alliance, all have fled except for Andy Newman and the site has become the repository for every shite aspect of 'the left'; in the name of Anti Imperialism, the SU has cheerleaded the actions of the Iranian Govt., the chinese govt.,and even the Russian federation for fucks sake! Obsessed with 'islamophobia' and Anti Zionism to the point of holding the fascists of Hamas and Hesbollah as examplars the SU represents everything that stinks about the left in Britain.
Harrys place was the nemesis of SU blog; originally a clearly social democratic blog which placed itself centrally in the left and stood against the madness of the left's Islamophilia and sucking up to the 'resistance', and had a rather dodgy readership. Now the lefties have all moved on and the dodgy readers have taken over-
since the election the blog has become an openly tory site- attacking strikers and protesters and defending tory scum.

from now on I will bash myself around the head with my copy of Bakunin's "Hair Tips and Beard Styles for Beginners" everytime I am tempted to click on those links

Thursday, November 11, 2010

the kids are alright

Make the tory/lib Cunts fear!
Yesterdays domonstration was fantastic and have the lie to those who would write off todays young people as unpolitical and apathetic. the university and FE students who demolished the tory HQ instinctively understood the only way to stop the coalitions campaign of cuts and attacks on our class- make them Understand that every cut every criminalisation of the poor will be met by class anger and mass resistance, and that very single one of them will be held personally responsible for the consequences of their policies!

TORY HQ RIOT : REPORT FROM CLASS WAR STUDENTS

as a layabout post graduate I was variously otherwise employed yesterday and so once again missed out on a decent demonstration and so I have ripped the following shamelessly from Ian Bones blog:
TORY HQ RIOT : REPORT FROM CLASS WAR STUDENTS
I’ll be putting my own account of the day up later but in the meantime here’s a report from Leeds Class War students:

‘Was good to see you on the demo today, thought i’d share some thoughts for you to use in a write up tomorrow. First and controversially i want to give credit where it is due to the student members not only of the SWP but also of the other “trot” student groups. I’m not one to usually say this as the SWP are a hundred times more annoying to deal with in the small pond of the university than they are in the real world. But these comrades, and I today have no difficulty calling them comrades, actually followed their words with deeds and got stuck in with the rest of us, paper sales forgotten. Today these people acted like class conscious students and not like the pawns of their political cliques and I only hope they can keep it up.

Secondly and to some equaly controversially, i am pleased to say that the anarchos and libertarians were completely out done by our “non-political” fellow students. I don’t want to sound all wanky and go on about Temporary Autonomous Zones but something did seem to happen when that glass broke, it seemed that peoples inhibitions smashed with it. We all suddenly came to realise that the police were not only out numbered but out manoeuvred and out gunned. Students baring placard with slogans like “I only popped out for a pint of milk” were in no time at all happily breaking them over the heads of the nearest copper. And the first chant that these silverspooned students began after the doors went down and people got inside: “burn it down!-burn it down!- burn it down!” We realised that we not only controlled the entire building but also the square in front of it and the road it was on, the police were kettled in by us! Fires started to appear as people began stripping the card board from their placards in order to pass the wooden sticks to the front line burning the resulting piles. As the smoke rose so did the song (which leeds class war students did have the honour of singing first at the millbank) sing along with me: “build a bonfire, build a bonfire but the tories on the top! Put the libdems/coppers/bosses in the middle and we’ll burn the bloody lot!”. The samba band was met by a huge cheer, seriously, and believe me comrades there is nothing better than fighting against a police line with a tribal drum beat at you back.
Throwing shit at copper quickly became a student game, the scoring as follows: 10 points if you throw something and you hit a cop 20 points if you take a swing at one 50points if your blow/object hurts 100 points for blood/hospitalisation with bonus points awarded for the stealing of trunchions shields and helmets. We were a bit unsure of what to do with the truncions and helmets one we had them not finding them very effective against the cops body armour so these too became projectiles.
At the climax it started to snow. Students from the roof had located large foam fire extinguishers and set them off from the top of the building, dubstep blaring from the bike sound sytems and chants and songs rippling across the crowd the violence against the building and the coppers seemed to become part of the dance, quite litterally in some cases, students would dance in the buffer zone infront of the police only to finish their set with a well aimed kick punch of lugie to the face of a cobble stone through a window. as soon at the fire extinguisers were empty these too became weapons hurled down from the roof on the heads of the coppers forcing them to retreat under the awning of the building allowing the students to tighten their corden around them.

Bouncing along to a samba beat with an in time rendition of “lets go fucking mental” I felt that this could really be the beginning of something big, hopefully now the anarchist movement and in particular our elders and betters, and all those who still beleive that you can’t be working class and go to uni will give the students the support they deserve AND stop treating them as a seperate class in society, use us! We are workers, in fact we are paying huge sums of money to be trained in to better workers we’re angry and have litle to lose.

Leeds Class war students favourite chant: “we ‘ate tories and we ‘ate tories, we ‘ate tories and we ‘ate tories, we ‘ate tories and we ‘ate tories, we are the tory [clap] haters!

It helped that the anarchist students were fairly on it: smashing down the cctv cameras and sending the fit team off with a bleeding head very early on in the proceedings, but all in all I’m happy to announce we were outclassed by the ingenuity and fighting spirit of students who had never been on a demo before.

at current count there were 32 arrests, not bad on a demo of 45,000, (and we lay-about students managed to hospitalise 5 coppers at the last count.) THIS IS IMPORTANT COMRADES, THOSE ARRESTED WILL BE FACING SERIOUS CHARGES AND MANY FOR MANY OF THEM THIS WILL BE THERE FIRST DEMO AND POSSIBLY FIRST ARREST, FIND OUT FROM YOUR LOCAL UNI WHAT SOLIDARITY ACTIONS ARE GOING ON (leeds comrades look out for the new and imroved leeds class war blog) AND OFFER WHAT EVER SUPPORT YOU CAN, IF WE WANT THIS SORT OF STUFF TO CONTINUE AND ESSCULATE PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW THEY’LL BE LOOKED AFTER.

I’ll leave the last words to my fellow students, chanting in unison against the terrified and out numbered metropolitan police: “You ain’t seen nothing yet, b-b-b-baby you just ain’t seen nothing yet”….

Support those arrested: http://nov10.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Cameron redesigns the Royal Navys flag

Versions of the white ensign have been flown by the ships of the Royal navy since the early 17th century.




However the new strategic defence review has announced a new and cost cutting version which will correctly reflect the Condem Naval strategy for the next ten years



Saturday, October 16, 2010

fighting back


perhaps it is my age, but try as I might I cannot stand the thought of sitting through hours of political bullshit meetings. If opposing and fighting back against this slimeball government means having to listen to the would be Commissars and waannabe carreerists tossing themselves into verbal orgasm a the thought of at last having an audience again (since the last one melted away buried under a mass of unwanted 'we are all hesbollah' placards). then we have alreasdy lost. however for the left this matters not. their agenda isn't anything about stopping the cuts or defending the working classes living conditions, and everything about atttracting a new layer of sub paying sheep to fill the coffers and keep the full timers in their positions.
It is for this reason that I welcome Ian Bones attempt to revive CLASS WAR,
We need to bring back the ethos of Class War; cut through the bollocks of the lefty poseurs and instead make the rich afraid! make it clear that the libdems and the tories are, each and every one of the curs, personally responsible for the effects of the cuts that Camerron/Clegg impose.
"if you cut our services- we will cut you!"

who is that fat bastard?

Thursday, October 07, 2010

The Torys are back. Let the mask drop!


the sides of cop cars have in recent years become emblazoned with mission statements, usually crouched in incomprehensible, corporate, bollockeese.
in the thames valley for instance the police cars have for a number of years had "Thames Valley Police: Reducing crime disorder and fear" stencilled on them.
However it appears that the arrival of a Tory government the necessity for bland sloganeering is over. The above picture is of one of the vans deployed by the riot cops who kettled the anarchist bloc protesting against the Tories' conference in Birmingham last weekend.
For those without a classical education the latin is a quote attributed to Caligula
"Let them Hate so long as they Fear."
Community policing?
Utinam custodiae unam cervicem haberet!

thanx Ian Bone

Friday, September 24, 2010

I Love the Railway benefit Fund

the lovely people at the Railway benefit fund have agreed to pledge me enough money to allow me to undertake my first module of my masters.
Now to start saving for the second!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

please give me all your money



I am pleased to repoprt that I have been offered a place at Reading University to study for a MRes in Medieval Studies.
The downside is that for some unknown reason there is not a huge amount of funding available for budding medievalists.
I therefore need to find the money to pay my fees.
I am planning to study part time. This will enable me to meet my families living expenses whilst I am studying, and also to ensure that I continue to assist my wife in providing care to the foster children in our charge.
If you can help, then please visit my gofundme page:
http://funds.gofundme.com/n32g


anything that you can contribute will help enormously. The course is divided modularly, and the first module is only £500, which is not an impossible amount.
I hope that can get some funding from the Railway benefit fund, but cannot expect them to stump up all the cash.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

SWP- Hilter, "not all bad"

I am getting better, I no longer wait, baited breath, for Wednesday morning when I can read the latest ramblings of Socialist Worker for more evidence of the demise of senile Trotskyism into its final dotage.
I am indebted therfore to Ian Bone for flagging up the latest triumphant Low in a catalogue of all time lows from the SWP.
In an article attacking the sacrifice and bravery of those who defeated Nazi Germany's attempt to invade Britain in 1940, Chris Bambery, attack dog of the Central committee reveals the following gem:
"Another Falsehood is that Hitler was planning to invade Britain"

Bambers goes on to claim that the real fascist was Churchill, not Hitler. that the blame for the deaths of so many Londoners during the Blitz was down to Churchill, not the Nazi bombers. That the battle of Britain was nothing to do with defending Britain but to boost Churchill's reputation. And that the whole thing was a propaganda exercise:
The air battles of 1940 were used to huge effect to win sympathy for Britain in the US.

I have read much of this filth before; it is the mainstay of the so called "revisionists", who seek to absolve Hitler and the nazi regime from all culpability for the Second world war and ultimately to explain away and deny the reality of the Holocaust.

If you think that I am quoting out of context or twisting Bambi's words read the original here

Sunday, August 22, 2010

A world to win? An open invitation.

Thinking about the post before last, it occurred to me that I had not heard anyone from the Left actually talk about what it is that they were fighting for.
we know plenty about what we are against, but nothing at all about what would replace the present state of affairs if the Left was to take power.
I am of the opinion that this is one of the problems that confronts the Left; it has become a reactionary movement, certain in its dislikes, but without any positive message to enthuse or attract new support.
This has not always been the case; at the beginning of the twentieth century Socialists, whether Marxist social democrats, or Leninist Communist were able to mobilise hundreds of thousands with their visions of the better world that the adoption of their programmes would herald. Even the industrial unions of the Anarcho Syndicalists gained mass support in certain areas.
This was because, however authoritarian or muddle headed the solutions offered by these organisations, they made sense and offered an improvement in the conditions that the working class were enduring under a Capitalism violently tearing itself apart attempting to escape from the crisis of Imperialist confrontation.
The world, and Capitalism, has moved on. But the Left has not.
Tony Cliff used to say that the case for Socialism was simple, just look at what Capitalism has done: but this just does not cut the mustard; without a real vision offering the Working Class a better future it cannot hope, nor deserve, to attract support.
I think that the Left has lost all sight of a positive vision for the future, but I want to be proved wrong.
I am therefore opening up this blog for anyone who wishes to put forward a vision or blueprint for a socialist future.
Send them in, show us what we are fighting for.
Just a couple of rules:
1. Only positive visions- we are always hearing what we are against- this is to hear what we are for.
2. no attacks on others, put forward your vision, don't snipe at others ( the lefts only acheivement in recent years has been to embrace the internet as a weapon of vitriol).
3. Lets have vision for a future- not reruns of 1917, 1936 etc. etc.

Contributions will be published as seperate authored posts, with their own comments threads.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

"Socialism in the 21st Century." sic.

An old mate has sent me this:


On Tuesday 6th July the day after Marxism 2010 finished, four supporters of the IS Tendency (a man and three women) walked into a tube station near the event venue. One was wearing a Marxism 2010 tee-shirt, another carrying a Sociailst Worker poster, the other two were more anonymous. One of the women attempted to fare dodge by doubling through the barrier. The staff on duty stopped her and insisted she buy a ticket (I know it sounds trite but they were only doing their job!). An argument ensued in which the four comrades began shouting abuse at three tube workers (two of whom were members of the RMT union).



I thought it very ironic. These four socialists (who appeared to be middle class students), had spent five days at an event called 'Marxism'; attending such courses as 'Class in the 21st century' with a meeting on 'What makes you working class?' and were probably inspired by the idea of working class power in the abstract.



Then, at what was virtually their first encounter with real working class people in the workplace after leaving the campus they showed such a high degree of contempt and hostility towards the very workers with whom they entrust the future of humanity.



As the abuse (which admittedly by now was travelling in both directions) heated up one comrade called a female tube worker 'a bitch'. Presumably this socialist had attended the meeting on 'What did the Russian Revolution do for women?' or maybe the meeting on 'The New Sexism'.



This incident is known because one of the tube workers present was himself once a member of the SWP and attended Marxism on five occassions in the 80's and 90's. The incident left him feeling embarassed and ashamed.



thanks to 3S

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Finding something worth fighting for is harder than finding something to fight against

Throughout the many years that I have spent ‘on the left’ I held on to a, sometimes shifting, vision of the type of society that I wanted to see achieved through our collective efforts.
I remained convinced that Marx was correct when he said that the working class would bring about a socialist society, not through the preaching of pious sermons and abstract principles, but because socialism would make every ones life better, and that Capitalism could not hope to meet peoples needs. Tony Cliff used to say that the case for socialism is easy, just look at what Capitalism does.
One of the earliest doubts that I had about the apparent inevitability of socialisms triumph was how dismissive other socialists appeared to be of every aspect of life that made it pleasant or bearable; the Televisions, soap operas, games consoles, washing machines football, etc. etc. The po faced Puritanism of these ‘Comrades’ and their sneering contempt of the ‘proles’ who could be bought off by such trinkets, made me nervous about the type of new world that they would seek to lead, and wonder how exactly a working class might be persuaded to give up all its pleasures and small luxuries to struggle for a socialism which offers them a worse standard of living.
Marx had insisted in the mid nineteenth century that Capitalism would be forced by competition to drive the living standards of the workers down to the point of absolute poverty, whilst simultaneously creating the wealth and productive forces that could provide for the needs of all.
Marx was bang on the money when it came to the potential of capitalism to produce immeasurable wealth, more than enough to meet the needs of every person across the globe, however he was completely wrong when it came to the working class.
Everywhere that Capitalism goes in its search for new markets and greater profits, yesterday in Japan and Korea, today in China and India, it brings wages and conditions, which whilst far worse than those enjoyed in Western Industrial nations are far greater than anything previously known in these countries. It creates markets amongst these new workers for its consumer goods, and in bringing them together creates the collective power for those workers that allows them to force better conditions and higher wages.
Marx was first and foremost a National Revolutionary, he, and Engels fought in 1848 for a unified Germany under a liberal- republican programme, and Marx’s preoccupation with the promotion of a ‘state’ solution, and German unification informed his writings throughout his life.
Stuck in a vision of revolution and Socialism unbreakably saddled to Marx’s failed vision Socialists have repeatedly sought a short cut that could bypass the unforgivable reluctance of the working class to allow the socialists to lead them to revolution. The vanguard party as envisioned by Lenin, which supplanted the role of the Class with that of a disciplined, combat party to capture state power was the most pervasive and long lasting of these , but every generation has adopted Generals, dictators, demagogues and charlatans who it was held would, through autocratic power of will and ruthless denial of liberty, cut through the reluctance of the proletariat to fulfil its allotted role, and each generation has had its subsequent disillusionment and recrimination as these socialists learn once again the meaning of the old song:

“Il n'est pas de sauveurs suprêmes
Ni Dieu, ni César, ni tribun”

Since the fall of the Soviet Union, and the failure of the embalmed Lenin Corpse god, the search for a short cut for socialism has become more desperate; even those who were formally intensely hostile to the Stalinist Bloc, such as the Trotskyists, shared so many assumptions with their estranged Bolshevist cousins as to have been totally disarmed and disorientated by their sudden, rapid and total collapse.
The failure of state socialism left the Left rudderless. Without a central anchor subsidiary concerns took centre stage.
Anti- imperialism was once a means to an end, the idea being that the overthrow of Imperialist control would empower working class struggles in the Home countries, and that the weakness and cowardice of the native bourgeoisie would ensure that the working class in the colonies would inevitably take the leading role in overthrowing imperialist control and then pass directly on to the socialist revolution. It was a nonsense, but one that fitted into the wider world view of the Leninist Left. Despite decades of experience in which the theory was repeatedly disproved, and one liberation leader after another, promoted and lauded by the International Left, betrayed the hopes embodied in him, the left was unable and unwilling to break with the theory, for to do so would be to show their Gods as fallible.


Now the failure of ‘really existing socialism’ and the increasing irrelevance of the Left domestically led to Anti Imperialism taking centre stage, but now devoid of the old ’progressive’ baggage; now anyone who attacks or fights America, or the West in general is worthy of support; Serbian Chauvinists, Iraqi Ba’athists, the Taliban, etc. etc., no matter how brutal, authoritarian and murderous the regime could be toward its own population, if it stands, temporarily, in confrontation with the US then it will be supported and justified by the western left.
Only certain nations are worthy of support; the travails of Kurds, Tibetans, Armenians and Georgians etc. are ignored whilst all eyes are focussed on the ‘crimes’ of Israel, who uniquely amongst all the states of the world, is denied even the right to exist. The Left rolls itself in the filth of Anti-Semitism, revamped versions of the Medieval Blood libel is peddled without murmur and the left marches under Hamas flags and chants:
“We are all Hesbollah!”

When I left the SWP, it was the wholesale adaptation of its politics to appeal to Muslim communities, and especially Muslim community leaders, accepting the myth of Islamophobia; that there was a world wide war against Muslims, led by the USA and in the service of the ‘Zionists’, that was a major impetus in making me leave.
I began a journey across the left, attempting to rediscover the original vision of the need for a better world which had originally inspired me, but I came to the conclusion that the rot went far further than just the SWP. It was not there was a moral vacuum in the left, but instead a willingness to close its collective eyes to injustice and oppression in the name of a Greater Good.
Only among the Anarchists that could I find those who refused to compromise principle and remain true to a vision of a better world free from the shackles of State and God, however, even within the Anarchist movement they were a small minority whilst the mass of anarchists parroted the lefty lines; but dressed in black and with more swears.

If we want to change the world, we should first ensure that what we want to replace it with is better than what we already have. Our present system has all kinds of faults; a Government driving through its ideologically driven agenda of cuts to the public sector, even though the majority of voters have just voted against these cuts, and that government is propped up by M.P.s who were elected on a manifesto opposing those cuts, invites, if not demands opposition. But such opposition is possible because of the democratic nature of our society, we have the right to protest. All too much of the left who will be jockeying to provide the ‘leadership’ of the anti cuts movement are committed to sweeping away all democratic rights if they ever came within a whisper of gaining power. They are willing to tolerate the murder of gays and women abroad in order to gain the support of Islamist influenced Muslims here.
Before we break the chains of the old oppression lets make sure that in doing so we are not laying upon ourselves even heavier shackles wrapped in shiny ‘socialist’ garb.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

'aving a laff? No, not really.

this weeks socialist worker is trying to drum up support for it's weekend summer school, Marxism (sic), In doing so they interview two (pretty obscure) stand up comedians who are on the slate for 'the entertainment'. The first Steve Parry is, we are breathlessly informed:
"a stand up comedian and writes for the Frank Skinner Show.

He has written for Man Stroke Woman, Dead Ringers and The Morning After Show. He works regularly for the legendary Basil Brush"




He is also a tosser.



You know, we talk about barricades and revolution, but our every day tools are trestle tables, leaflets and petitions.

Those fold up tables are like our Molotov cocktails – we are aware of where we are.


no. they are not.

a table


a molotov.

remember, it is important to recognise the differences.




the other, Joe Wells, is even more impressive, clearly expressing the rationale behind the swappies obsession with concealing their true political agenda behind numerous front campaigns
If you can win a crowd to trust you on something like fascism, then you can talk to them about anything.

Better Late than never

Well done England.
Played football like you meant it.
Germany next?

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Condem: can't even make the trains run on time!

The first Tory MP to try and top himself has made a complete bollocks of it.
Try harder next time!

shouldering responsibility

after the ultra- slow- slow- motion- car- crash- mascarading- as- a- football- game which was England vs. Algeria the blame game and recriminations are sure to follow.
In reality however I think it is time that resposnibility is acknowledged where it truly lies:

With me.


Well in truth, all of us.


We are like the woman who appears on Jeremy Kyle; she knows that he uses drugs, sleeps around steals and knocks her about, and yet she always ready to forgive him, to believe his latest sob story and to take him back.

Until the next time.
It is the same with England. Every four years the drums start beating and the strains of 'its coming home' awakens a small spark of optimism deep in a heart that has been scarred far to often, and suddenly you find yourself repeating the mantra of the abused:
"but they've changed! This time it will be better, they've promised!"
and we wave our little flags deck ourselves in our replica shirts and park ourselves in front of the television and find that its the old story once again.
At least Jeremy Kyle's ne'erdo wells have a chance of scoring (usually with their sister in laws).
Like the poorly misused women of Kyle's show, a clean break is what is needed
It is time to break the cycle of abuse.
I have decided to learn Dutch.
Hup Holland!

Saturday, June 05, 2010

flotilla fancies

A week after the tragic events which followed the interception of the Gaza Aid flotilla by the Israeli military, here are some thoughts.
I have restrained myself from becoming embroiled in the discussions which immediately followed the killings of the activists by the Israeli commandoes; so much has become merely the entrenchment of existing positions made even more strident and more violent by the events on the Mavi Marmara.
what occurred upon the Turkish ship was it seems to me the tragic consequences of propaganda and rhetoric coming into stark conflict with reality.
The Israelis, and their supporters have portrayed the pro Gaza protesters, and those on the convoys, and ships as all terroristic jew haters; whilst still believing that they were really dealing with ISM style hippies. Thats why they stromed the ships armed with paintguns!
Meanwhile the politics of AntiZionism has been becoming increasingly violent in its rhetoric about Israel and its behaviour toward the Palestinians. Previous positions, whether 'two states' or a democratic and secular 'one state', which had been the mainstays of the Left have been sidelined by the growth and influence of radical Islamism, both within Palestine and the power of Hamas, and in the wider movement. Open and explicit Anti Semitic themes have become more common, and have been left unchallenged within the Anti zionist movement. Israel is accused of committing a Genocide on the people of Gaza, and of acting toward the Palestinians as bad as, if not worse than, the Nazis toward the Jews.
And yet, when attempting to break what they themselves descibed as 'a medieval siege' they seemed to think that Israel would respect International Law and not attempt to physically prevent them going to Gaza. Some of the activists even took kids with them!

"daddy are we going to centerparcs this year",
"no son we are going to lift the siege of Gaza and halt the Zionazi genocide!"
"yay!".
When the Israeli commandoes abseiled on to deck of the Mav Marmara, this mess of rhetoric and reality met head on; Turkish Islamists attempting to defeat the might of the Israeli State armed with sticks, and Israeli commanders continuing to drop soldiers singly into a armed and angry crowd.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

one Laws for the rich....

The usual suspects of ConDem politicians and sycophantic journalists rush to assure us of the Good Nature and Honest Intent of David Laws, the arch slasher of the coalition, who we are earnestly informed should not be made to suffer too long for his 'attempt to keep his personal relationship a secret', and that the £40,000 he falsely claimed was not a great deal of money and far less than he might have claimed. Laws had been living with his partner since 2004 and claiming housing costs for 'renting a room'.

Meanwhile on Friday a Norfolk mother, Sarah Riley, was imprisoned for falsely claiming £10,000 in housing benefit over a period of 7 years after negletting to inform the authorities that she had started a relationship.
Jailing her for 20 weeks, judge Alasdair Darroch, told her he accepted that prison would be devastating for her but said: “This is a very large sum of public money and there was dishonesty going on for a long period of years.”

He accepted her relationship with her partner had not been stable but said: “I'm unable to avoid a prison sentence.”


Apparently Class is no longer an issue in 21st century Britain.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

sWpANKERS!

Watching the BBC footage of the lunatic disruption by the SWP of the ACAS talks between BA and UNITE my wife noted that "even the Anarchists were never so stupid". she is quite right, not even in the most fevered, acid fuelled, nightmares of Ian Bone and Chris Knight could such a cackhanded, wrongheaded, and completely counterproductive stunt have been imagined!
the cynical and elitist hijacking of the cause of the BA crew by the swap-trots displays in the most stark terms possible their contempt for the working class and for the futures of those in whose name they claimed to be acting.
If there can be any good from this shameful display then let us hope that it opens the eyes of trades unionists everywhere to the anti working class, anti union, and anti socialist nature of this nasty little sect.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

red shirts and red herrings

Amid the gloom and foreboding surrounding the Condem victory in Britain, it is understandable that some might look far afield where exciting revolts and movements might be found to give those awaiting the firm hand of tory governance some vicarious joy.
The most visible and misunderstood of these foreign rebellions is the redshirts of Thailand, where the fact that the protesters are dress in RED is enough to gain support from the more credulous, or those who consider that they are fighting the state is enough
However the world is a far more complicated place. Luckily on Dave Osler's site there is some sanity his reader LesAbby is a Thai resident and is able to give a proper analysis of the situation: The Class politics of the thailand crisis

the comments are especially interesting as LesAbby confronts some of those leftwingers who would rather see the world as they wish it to be rather than it really is. this for me is the clincher
Another quick thought. The red shirt movement has failed to expand its base to three important groups, although this could of course change. I have already talked about their inability to attract young Bangkok industrial workers and the trade unionists in the state sector. Another group missing are the university students both from the provincial and the Bangkok universities. Instead of the say 50% student makeup of the rally you could expect, you find it’s probably less than 1%. This should be the area you would think the academia based Trotskyist movement could supply the numbers.

Last night the red shirts were driven away from setting up a stage at Ramkhamhaeng University, a school where fees are low and many courses part or flexible time so attracting poorer students. Now whether this was by fellow students, the police or other elements I haven’t found out yet.

Going the other way and looking at a group that overwhelmingly supports the red shirts, you find the police. Now while the army may be the more corrupt group in total financial value, the police are the most corrupt group the public has to deal with on a daily basis. Their traffic stops are there to do just one thing, generate cash payoffs. In the ‘entertainment’ industry by far the largest mafia like organization is the police force. If they are on your side you should start to get a little suspicious.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

yellow fucking tories


Vote liberal, you get Tories.
WHAT PART OF THIS DIDN'T YOU FUCKING UNDERSTAND?

At least now the choice is clear, the ConDems will cut and slash and Labour will fight them.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

A shabby deal behind closed doors and fuck the landed Gentry!



Nick Clegg Makes his position known


as the two public school toffs cobble a stitch up between them, nobody should be in any doubts that this has bugger all to do with democracy. the old etonian and the old Westminsterian are carving up the spoils before toasting a muffin between the buttocks of the british people.
Clegg made much during the campaign when the polls seemed to promise him the possibility of either a first place or second in the popular vote about how he would refuse to deal with a labour leader who came third in the poll, yet now even though Clegg was trounced in the election he stands as the kingmaker; hypocracy thy name is liberal.



billy Braggart Mansion

Yesterday we were treated to a amazing sight- a demonstration of the smug; liberal democrats marching to lobby clegg to ensure electoral change, amongst them was Billy Braggart- a man who for years paraded himself as a labour supporter, and after buying his country estate in dorset, famously declared that Labour could never win in such areas and that Labour supporters should back the libdems ( luckily weymouth and the rest of south dorset's working class ignored him and Labour promptly won there the next two elections). Bragg-art is now firmly outed as a Liberal landowner, When he shows up at Tolpuddle this year, like the country squire sharing his largesse amongst his loyal peasants, lets hope he gets told that Tory supporting turncoats can fuck off!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Don't let them back in


There is only one way to
Stop the Toffs
Vote Labour

Monday, April 19, 2010

an occasional update

I am painfully aware that I am not, when it comes to the frequency of my posts, a electronic samuel pepys, just recently I have had to complete my dissertation and am in the middle of revision for my finals, We are also fostering a succession of short-term emergency placement kids, which take up much of the available blogging time (to say nothing of the sitting around staring at the telly and painting (badly) english civil war model soldiers that takes up the other 90% of my life).
I am also trying, slowly to work out the politics that I now want to argue for; I am still convinced in the necessity of a non- statist, libertarian, socialism; though how that could be, or should be created is far less clear.
Anarchism as a movement is a historical not a current phenonemom, its adherents in the here and now have little more significance than the Sealed Knot, who spend their weekends recreating the battles of the English Civil War.
Social democracy is a movement that has, despite the best predictions, and repetitive declarations, of the far left flatly refused to disappear.
It is a movement, both on its left and right, that is firmly wedded to authoritarian and statist politics.
The ideals of the Labour Left are rested on the myths of the 1945 Labour Government, that socialism is attained through Nationalisation, through the bureaucratic management of Capital.
Neither the vacuousness of sectarian purity, nor the state worshipping of the social democratic left (let alone the would-be chekists of the leninists) are attractive to me.
Instead I am starting to look again at the experience of the ILP after its split from Labour in 1932; rejecting the betrayals of the Labour party in office and under attack from the Communists- to the extent of the murder of its leading comrades at the hands of the OGPU in Spain. The ILP had to develop a revolutionary policy was combined with a serious commitment to practical work in working class communities. the ILP's experience has been historically denigrated by Labour movement historians who influenced by either Labourism, who denied that the split could never be justified nor have any positive outcome, or communist or trotskyite, who could not forgive the ilps refusal to kowtow to Moscow.
It is impossible to recreate the pre war ILP; it would be an exercise as pointless as the 1917, 1936 and 1945 reenactment societies that prolifigate the left.
Instead there has to be a new attempt to create a left, one which places individual liberty as highly as social and economic equality. One that refuses to become embroiled in the false messiah of "Anti Imperialism"; which betrays the working class of the third world by giving left cover to their rulers, whose sole 'redeeming' feature is their opposition to the US government.
It is depressing therefore to read that a serious attempt to build an independent working class politics- the IWCA seems to be floundering in the one area that it had had some limited success, in the Blackbird Leys area of Oxford, and is abandoning electoral politics for 'community work'.
Enough meandering, back to the books- I have to immerse myself into the history of the 12th/13th century French Monarchy for the next two weeks.

Monday, February 08, 2010

the trotskyists can't even achieve cult status

Those of us who have been through the mill of trotskyite politics have argued that It resembles more of a series of religious cults than a political movement. This belief is usually treated as little more than an insult in the knockabout world of interweb political banter.
However, it appears that some enterprising comrades at the socialist party (thats the old Militant Tendency, now outside Labour and in the big wide world) decided that there might be currency in admitting that they are a religious cult after all.
They took the trades union UNISON to an employment tribunal claiming that the unions attempt at stopping trotskyite manipulation of their union, was denying their religious freedom under the new antidiscrimination laws.
The tribunal threw the SPEW application out, and were particularly vehement in their judgement of the political beliefs of the trotskyists, describing them as holding views which were “not compatible with human dignity” that the attitudes of the SP were “Extreme and repugnant views” and that Trotskyism is “not a belief that qualifies for protection from discrimination" they found that “The claimant views conflict with the fundamental rights of others, and the dignity of others, and are not worthy of respect... in a democratic society".
Understandably the socialist party has been somewhat miffed by this verdict. They have decried it as an attempt by a Capitalist legal system to attack socialism and put it on a par with the banning of the British airways staff strike before christmas. http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/latest/8772
Leaving aside the absurdity of comparing an injuction gained by the management of BA banning a legal ballot by 14000 workers with an employment tribunal verdict in a case they themselves had brought . What is striking is the unbelievable naivety of these 'professional revolutionaries'. They complain that the courts are capitalist and class biased, and "that socialists and Marxists do not have the right to be protected in law from discrimination and harassment in the workplace or in a trade union."
what sort of revolutionaries seek legal protection from the state? what sort of socialist attempt to attack their trades union by dragging them through the capitalist courts?
Oh yes, Leninists.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Heres to you, Mrs Robinson.


are you willing to discuss an alteration to the marching route down the Garvaghy road or are you trying to seduce me?


when the Good Friday agreement was first implemented there were elements not just within the ranks of die hard republicanism who were of the opinion that the decades long struggle for a united Ireland had been abandoned by Provisional Sinn Fein/PIRA. Recent developments should silence such critics.
The revelations of guilty, intergenerational, sex scandal, intermixed with financial shenanigans with the ubiquitous "property developers" show how close Stormont has grown to the example set by their estranged cousins on the Liffey. That it is the DUP that is leading 'Norn into this historic convergence is clear vindication of the far sightedness of the Adams/Mcguinness strategy.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

An American gets it

....Why? Because it is exploitation, not discrimination, that is the primary producer of inequality today. It is neoliberalism, not racism or sexism (or homophobia or ageism) that creates the inequalities that matter most in American society; racism and sexism are just sorting devices. In fact, one of the great discoveries of neoliberalism is that they are not very efficient sorting devices, economically speaking. If, for example, you are looking to promote someone as Head of Sales in your company and you are choosing between a straight white male and a black lesbian, and the latter is in fact a better salesperson than the former, racism, sexism and homophobia may tell you to choose the straight white male but capitalism tells you to go with the black lesbian. Which is to say that, even though some capitalists may be racist, sexist and homophobic, capitalism itself is not...

....This is also why the real (albeit very partial) victories over racism and sexism represented by the Clinton and Obama campaigns are not victories over neoliberalism but victories for neoliberalism: victories for a commitment to justice that has no argument with inequality as long as its beneficiaries are as racially and sexually diverse as its victims.

In the neoliberal utopia that the Obama campaign embodies, blacks would be 13.2 per cent of the (numerous) poor and 13.2 per cent of the (far fewer) rich; women would be 50.3 per cent of both. For neoliberals, what makes this a utopia is that discrimination would play no role in administering the inequality; what makes the utopia neoliberal is that the inequality would remain intact.

Walter Benn Michaels- Against Diversity
from here
(thanks Butchers)

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Blimey thats a turn up...

...after 25 years I have rejoined the labour party.


not from any matter of principle, I am as convinced as ever that there is no state road to socialism, whether revolutionary(bolshevik) nor reformist (labour). I am however painfully aware of the threat of a tory victory at the next election. The past 13 years Labour in government have done many things that I have found execrable, and yet have rebuilt the NHS, introduced the minimum wage and the tax credit system which has made a real difference to the lives of many working class people. the existence of a Labour govt. has given us a, relatively, benign regime in which to operate, a situation which would change immensly if Cameron and his toffs get in.
I look at Brown's handling of the recession and note that there has been less reprossessions than expected, less bankruptcies, lower unemployment, There is little that national politicians can do in the face of a global recession but it seems that Brown and co have in many ways given us a soft landing.
In contrast the slathering of Cameron's cronies at the chance to slash and burn the welfare state in their urge to cut! cuT! cUT! CUT! shows that they are determined to take us back to Thatchers days.
so I signed up to do what I can to stop Cameron.