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Tuesday, 22 July 2014

The Socialist Way: We need to build and make this the biggest demonst...

The Socialist Way: We need to build and make this the biggest demonst...: Last Saturday, cities and towns across the world demonstrated against Israel's barbaric attack on Gaza. The biggest was in London,...

Standing with the people of Gaza under attack from Israel

Over 260 Palestinians have been killed in the current war “ the overwhelming majority civilians. Two Israelis have also lost their lives. The destruction raining down on the Gaza strip, carried out by the huge US-backed military machine of the Israeli government, is completely disproportionate to the threat faced by homemade rockets fired from Gaza. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu claims that the war is necessary to guarantee Israelis safety. In reality, this ground invasion will do nothing to make Israelis safer. It is at the expense of many lives, such as the tragic killing of four children playing on a beach. Homes of those accused of killing Israelis have been targeted and destroyed, leaving survivors to search for the dead amongst the rubble. Meanwhile, no such action has been taken against the families of far-right Israeli activists charged with killing Mohammad Abu-Khdeir. Unfortunately, the rockets fired into Israel and the attempted attack on Sufa, within Israel’s current border, have threatened lives and given Israel the excuse it needed to justify a ground invasion of the Gaza strip. These tactics are counter-productive, and will not further the cause of an independent Palestinian state. Just yesterday there was a shelling of a hospital in Gaza killing several injuring many more. The claims by Israel that hamas are hiding their militants amoung civilians is a duvious one at best as even last time in 2008/09 Amnesty international looked into these claims and could find no evidence of this. This conflict, and the ongoing vicious oppression of Palestinians, is rooted in the western quest for domination throughout the Middle East. It is intractable under the present capitalist system, which places profit over people. The spark that ignited this present conflict is the collapse of US-backed peace talks in April, and the formation of a new Palestinian government supported by both main political parties, Hamas and Fatah. Israel had attempted to hold back demands for Palestinian statehood by playing off one party against another; the threat of a united government is the main threat the Israeli government is fighting. Netanyahus government has a policy of expanding into Palestinian areas by supporting new settlements and driving Palestinians off their land. It has no interest in working for a real peace, and for a genuinely independent Palestine. The US, led by Obama, fully backs the right-wing Israeli government as a steady partner in an oil-rich region wracked with war and instability. There are glimpses of how to overcome the situation. Joint protests of Jews and Arabs in Israel has shown the potential for working-class people uniting for an end to the conflict. The recent protests of Arabs within Israel were the largest for a number of years. A recent poll showed that the majority of Palestinians supported demonstrations and mass action over rocket attacks, as the way to win an independent Palestine. The Arab Spring showed what is possible when working people stand up for themselves this way. In 2011, Israel saw a mass movement for public investment in housing, and other social services, which showed the potential for class divisions to open up in Israeli society. The struggle for peace, work and housing can only be won by mass struggle; kicking out the vested interests of the western governments, of big business, and of the right wing parties in Israel and Palestine. I stand fully behind the palestinian people in solidarity and hope there is a end to this conflict sooner rather than later as the casualties pile up.

Monday, 21 July 2014

The Socialist Way: Effectively support Gaza through Boycotts

The Socialist Way: Effectively support Gaza through Boycotts:   Morning comrades and friends all, here is a list of things and products that we can Boycott in support of Gaza and against Israel’s ...

Saturday, 19 July 2014

The character of the labour party and its contradictions

Whilst I was a member of the socialist party I was taught to hate the labour party and that I still do till this day. I was a member of the labour party for at time yet fell out of love with them very quickly indeed in my naive days of not knowing much on politics they seemed the best place to defeat the Tories and indeed they still may be if you solely rely on electoral politics and simply beating the other side. But I have now left the labour party and spent some time in the socialist party formally the militant tendency who were hammered by the Labour party leadership again and again until the main editorial board of the militant paper were expelled. I joined the socialist party hoping for a good analysis of the party I’d just left and on the whole I agreed with a lot of it at first holding a dismissive attitude towards the Labour party . But was the socialist party’s analysis of the labour party correct?? The one they still stand by today which leads them to set up such sectarian projects like the Trade Union and Socialist Coalition due to the fact they have written off the labour party and now consider it a fully capitalist party. But to my mind the Labour party has never been a fully socialist party even the late Tony Benn could recognise this. For militant the predecessor of the socialist party the labour party was always described as a capitalist workers party and indeed I do still think this is the case despite everything. It is very evident to me looking back at Militants history and how it became militant labour and now the socialist party it seems to me from someone now on the outside that Militant and its leadership almost overnight decided the labour party was no longer a mass body of the working class as soon as its main figures were expelled. Almost like a bad ex lover it set upon hating its ex party and throwing all sorts of accusations its way despite following in its old tradition itself. Indeed every time the labour party do not come out and support strikes you will see no end of socialist party and TUSC representatives mostly with the twitter follower ship of Dave Enlist condemning the labour party for not backing strikes. Yet history will show us that the labour party or should I say the leadership of the party are not known for backing strikes and indeed in the biggest strike in British history the famous general strike of 1926 which the likes of the Socialist party heap such inspiration on did not back this strike eithr. Indeed you can look all through history did the labour party which still at the time contained the likes of the Militant back the miners strikes in the 1980’s ?? No they did not and there was not the scorn poured on labour at the time like today. The fact is despite labours awfulness and don’t get me wrong I am not fan of the labour party what so ever and would not think of rejoining at all the analysis of this party is crucial for understanding where we are and where we need to go as a class. The labour party has always had a capitalist leadership and a working class base all be it today it has been hollowed out and its democratic structures eroded. Don’t get me wrong I get all that and is no longer place for mass workers struggle but thinking back to a time when the labour party was ever worth struggle is a fantasy dreamt up by various trotskyists who like to cover being in the labour party by looking to recruit. The union link is key for many if that link ever goes that will be the end but until it is closed off for good which I highly doubt as it keeps up the idea that labour can still be for workers even if it wont ever be now still is a distraction for workers looking to reclaim labour. I don’t believe the labour party to be able to be reclaimed as simply due to the fact it was never ours to reclaim. It’s always been a huge contradiction and to win we must look past the labour party itself for change in my opinion. Lets not beat around the bush Trotsky always said for his followers to join mass organisations of the working class to spread their ideas and gain influence and this was all the militant wherein the labour party for. Any pretence to say they supported the labour party are nonsense they clearly only were a part of it for their own ends as was most Trotskyites who ever join such mass organisations they are in it for themselves over the working class itself and their own eventual goals. They may sell you bullshit but the truth is always out there to find. The labour party will be a feature in the coming period as like it or not it is still about and needs to be dealt with as a organisation whether you see it as a vehicle for change or not it cant be wished away.

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Rearranging the deckchairs on the titanic

So today we have been treated to a government reshuffle 10 months away from the general election as it stands. Many seem to be crowing about how good it is that the likes of Michael Gove have been demoted and that various others have gone even trade unions like teh NUT celebrating seeing this as a victory. This is certainly not a victory of any sorts. THe policies remain and teh damage is there fora ll to see. one of the most hated figures in the tory ranks, - IDS Iain Duncan-Smith remains at the WP too which sickens me but i never thought he would be one to go he is doing exactly waht the government ask of him and to little resistance it has to be said. So here is a run down of who's gone where and where we should look at for the next year before the coming election and hopefully this will be the last we see of many if not all of these. Prime Minister David Cameron is reshuffling his top team, with details of new appointments and exits being unveiled. William Hague (moved) Mr Hammond has left the Ministry of Defence to become foreign secretary. He has been defence secretary since 2011, having previously held the transport brief. Michael Gove (moved) Mrs Morgan has been made education secretary, taking over from Mr Gove. The former lawyer has been a Treasury minister since 2013, having joined the government a year earlier. She will continue in her role as minister for women. Liz Truss (promoted to Cabinet) Mr Fallon, a Conservative MP since 1983, has been made defence secretary. He is regarded as a trouble-shooter who deals effectively with crises. Previously he held three jobs - as a business minister, minister of state for energy and minister for Portsmouth. Stephen Crabb (promoted to Cabinet) The MP quit his role as immigration minister earlier this year after admitting to having employed an illegal immigrant as a cleaner. He is now back as minister of state in the Department for Work and Pensions. Ken Clarke (out) Mr Paterson will no longer be environment secretary, a post he has held since 2012 when he replaced Caroline Spelman. Prior to that, he had served in the cabinet as Northern Ireland secretary. David Jones (out) Mr Jones has been sacked as Welsh secretary, having been in the cabinet post for two years. He had previously been a more junior minister in the Wales Office. Sir George Young (out) Sir George has resigned as chief whip. He was the leader of the Commons from 2010 to 2012. The 72-year-old North West Hampshire MP is one of the most experienced members of the coalition government, having held office under Margaret Thatcher and John Major. David Willetts (out) Mr Duncan has resigned as international development minister, a post he has held since 2010. Andrew Robathan (out) Mr Robathan has resigned as Northern Ireland minister. He was previously a defence minister until the October 2013 reshuffle. Damian Green (out) Mr Green has resigned as policing minister. He had been immigration minister from 2010 to 2012. Cabinet ministers and others staying in their jobs Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne Home Secretary Theresa May Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith Employment minister Esther McVey (but wi

Monday, 14 July 2014

Jenny Morris: For the first time in the history of modern social...

Jenny Morris: For the first time in the history of modern social...: There was a lot of political consensus on disability policy during the 20 years to 2010.  Over that period, the disability movement gradual...

Sunday, 13 July 2014

J10 and its impact

According the trade unions, over 1,000,000 people took part in yesterday’ public sector strikes, with many participating in marches and rallies across the country. Predictably, the Government claimed that the real figure was less than half of that, with David Cameron claiming the strikes as “illegitimate” and “not causing any disruption”. Government agencies proudly reporting how many of their services & offices remained open, despite the national call-out by several trade unions. This blatant massaging and manipulation of the figures is just another facet of the David Cameron School of falsification. Yes, an office, job centre, call centre, fire station, or school may have opened their doors; however, it is hardly business as usual. Operating a skeleton or token service, run by scabs, whilst 80% of that workplace is on strike, cannot be described as a victory for the employers. It seems that the Government and Tory media think that if a school stays open with just one person manning a telephone, then they can record that as a non-closure. If, as David Cameron claims, that the strikes were a damp squib that didn’t cause any disruption, they why is he providing a statement, and why is he plotting new legislation to attack trade unions? Yes, it would be better if the turnout for a strike ballot was 100%, but for many reasons they rarely are. However, the suggestion that ballots are usually less than 30% is another government falsehood. More importantly than satisfying the legal hurdle of a ballot – is the turnout of the day – as most of those striking vote with their feet, not with a pen. If and when legislation is brought in to set a minimum voting threshold, then I would expect to the number of people voting to rise significantly, and would then anticipate the government ferreting around for a another loophole or hurdle to utilise in their attempts to break trade unions. Oxbridge wanker, multi-millionaire, government ‘union-buster’, and former PPS to a paedophile, Francis Maude, said that “The more unions go on strike, the stronger the case for a change in the law being included in the Conservatives’ general election manifesto next year.” …. The irony of being elected on approximately 35% of those eligible to vote in constituency is apparently lost on Mr Maude. Francis Maude may soon find that he has a more pressing matter at hand should the investigation into child abuse by politicians want to look at his role as PPS to Peter Morrison, and the deal allegedly struck with the Labour Party & Police…