The secret war against apartheid

A wonderful book has just been published by Merlin Press called London recruits, the secret war against apartheid. The book’s launch has recently been celebrated in South Africa by a tour of comrades from Britain. London recruits tells the story in the words of the participants of the brave and well organised clandestine activities organised in London to send a number of volunteers to South Africa to participate in anti apartheid activities. Particularly helpful at times when the South African resistance forces were weakened, the contribution of young British workers to campaigns of leaflet bombing, arms smuggling, street broadcasts and opening of communication links and other activities was greatly valued. Untold stories are modestly and movingly told. Their great efforts made it clear to South Africa that the anti apartheid movement was unbeatable and attracting international solidarity. This is an important book that deserves to be widely read.

Make them homeless cut their benefits

A great new short report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has highlighted the likely plight of millions of young people who will be unable to enter the housing market and now live under the threat of having housing benefit removed.

The report, Housing options and solutions for young people in 2020, finds that an extra 1.5 million 18 to 30-year-olds will be forced into private renting in just eight years’ time.

It means many young people’s dreams of owning a home will never come true, while many more will have a much longer wait before they own their own properties.

An extra half a million young people will be forced to stay with their parents well into their 30s, taking the total number of young people living with mum and dad to 3.7 million by 2020.

In 2020, the number of home owners under 30 will nearly halve, with just 1.3 million expected to own their own homes. The number of homeless young people under 25 is predicted to rise to 81,000, with further increases expected.

The influx of young people chasing accommodation in the private rented sector (PRS) means that young families, poorer and vulnerable people will find it hardest to compete for tenancies with around 310,000 more young families looking for private rented housing in 2020.

The report warns of a ‘three-tier’ system developing in a race to find PRS housing, with those at the top who can afford to pay, a ‘squeezed middle’ group who might struggle to pay and a bottom rung of 400,000 who risk being excluded completely.

The authors make a number of recommendations to remedy these problems, including:

The provision of more affordable rents and longer, more stable private rented tenancies, with tax breaks for landlords who offer such options.
The expansion of local letting agencies who find suitable private rented housing and protect vulnerable young people by acting as brokers between young people and landlords.
Addressing the long term undersupply of housing to improve affordability.
Kathleen Kelly, Programme Manager for Place at the JRF, said: “Our badly functioning housing system will see those on the lowest incomes really struggling to compete in the competitive rental market of 2020.

“Renting is likely to be the only game in town and young people are facing fierce competition to secure a home in what is an already diminished supply of housing.

“With 400,000 vulnerable young people, including families, on the bottom rung of a three-tier private renting system we need to avoid turning a housing crisis into a homelessness disaster.”

 

NHS Trusts go bust

If you run public services like businesses they go bust. Several NHS Trusts are now in that position. Heavily funded previously under unsustainable Private Finance Initiative Schemes which line the pockets of private companies with public funds seven English NHS hospital trusts with debts are now to get access to a £1.5bn government bailout fund. This represents quite an unprecedented scale of difficulty within the NHS and is but a small sign of things to come as the market is allowed to rip through the NHS. All PFI contracts should be torn up with no compensation.

Syria defends itself

Syria’s right to self determination without interference is as just as any other country’s. The incursion of a Turkish fighter plane into its airspace could not be acceptable. While Turkey seeks apparently diplomacy rather than war, its provocative act clearly lends itself to the climate of war mongering being perpetrated against Syria and by default of course Iran. Sectarian divisions within the Muslim countries provide one of the most dangerous powder kegs on the planet. No provocatons against Syria and no war.

National Collective Bargaining.

The key focus of the coalitioin government is to break up the remaining public services. Essential in this task is their attack on public sector unions. This attack is like a scorched earth bombing campaign it seeks to hit public sector workers on every front all at once. There is a jobs massacre, a consistent assault on the value of pensions, a pay freeze, erosion of trade union time off agreements, victimisation of key activists and now an emerging threat particularly to local government national collective bargaining. Employers will seek single table bargaining based around one of the worst national agreements there is – the local government Green Book single status agreement. Without the right to free collective bargaining unions will lose their purpose and membership. The long term impact of the current threats to collective bargaining unless they are stopped will be extremely serious.

EU

A referendum on Britain’s continued membership of the EU now looks inevitable and all Parliamentary parties seem to say so. Apart from the appalling Paddy Ashdown and poor old Shirley Williams, it is difficult to find anyone who wants us to join the single currency and stay in the EU. It will be essential for the British people this time to recognise the con of the 1975 referendum led us down a path which quickened the pace of industrial and political decline for our country. We should leave the EU and fight for true internationalism and proper inter governmental arrangements. ALBA in Latin America shows the way. national independence to create a world of peacefully co operating and trading nations is a key socialist demand . Out of the EU, out of NATO, out of the international capitalist blocs.

Len McCluskey’s Conference speech.

Look up Len McCluskey’s speech on the Unite the union site. It was a strong class statement. The illusion that our class aspirations can be met by reclaiming the Labour Party etc, remains an illusion repeated by socialists since 1907, but Len’s strong working class values and commitment to their strong defense is a ray of hope in these difficult times. Len’s speech also reminded us that Marxism is about class power. This is the key question for our generation. How to take power from the rulers recognising that this cannot be done through a parliamentary amendment.

Paraguay

Britain should condemn the coup in Paraguay and recall its diplomats.

Free movement of labour

Only the slimiest of gang masters and sex traffickers really supported the free movement of labour in europe. It worsened mass unemployment throughout europe and played its part in breaking up collective bargaining. A more serous debate about neoliberal forced migration needs to follow now that even Milliband has spoken out

The Workers’ Blog

Practical experience has taught the working class how to struggle against capitalism; how we should have a strategy and link our tactics to it, while being flexible in approach. It shows how, if we are weak, we should fight lesser battles until we are strong enough to fight the bigger war. How to stay united, not over-reaching ourselves. How to defend our leaders when they are in danger of being picked off, but also how to avoid opportunists. How to be bold, to surprise the other side, but also knowing when to retreat.

These general principles always hold true, but the working class has to change and adapt its strategy and tactics in response to the latest actions of the enemy. Old forms of struggle may become redundant, or less effective. New tactics must be developed in response to new circumstances. In Britain Blair and Brown took up the cudgels created for them. They started more wars, destroyed more manufacturing, privatised more public services and made more billionaires than their so-called right wing predecessors. Read more on the web site.

The Workers’ Party Twitter Feed

Ukrainian ambassador to Germany whitewashes Bandera's crimes & ignores his collaboration with the Nazis. In Britain much of the media & most parliamentary politicians also revise history to their ends. Many who stigmatised Corbyn remain silent on Nazis in Ukraine.

Communist Party ☭@CPBritain

WORLD TURNED UPSIDE DOWN - Ukrainian ambassador to Germany speaks on the pro-Nazi butcher Bandera.

US is a country where violence in is endemic. It has unleashed wars against countries throughout the world, its culture glorifies killing, whether by serial killers, police or security operatives. Children learn games where the aim is to kill or maim.
https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/f/most-violent-country-earth

Keir Starmer has worked out that if Labour goes on about getting back in the EU, single market or customs union, Labour will lose badly; he'll be out of a job. Yet there are still those in Labour whose first loyalty is to Brussels.
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2022/07/04/sir-keir-starmer-clashes-labour-brexit/

With friends like these you get whole package: Brussels bureaucracy, "shared" i.e. ever decreasing sovereignty, NATO aggressive involvement, Banderist Nazi-Fascism which is whitewashed, history of genocide rewritten, "ethnic cleansing" of Russo-phone Ukrainians & unwinnable war.

Ursula von der Leyen@vonderleyen

Ukrainians are ready to die for the European perspective.

We want them to live with us the European dream.

A Series of Seminars: Economic Policy and the Role of Trade Unions is being run by the @GFTU1. An excellent set of informative discussion groups.

Load More...


All text on this site is copyright The Workers' Party of Britain. Established 2006