Solidarity 517, 18 September 2019

Bolton gone, danger stays

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 12:19

Barrie Hardy

The prospect of Donald Trump with his grubby little finger on the nuclear button horrified millions when he was elected.

That fear factor rose still further when he made John Bolton his National Security Adviser in April last year.

Bolton is a dangerous ultra-nationalist who believes that the USA has exclusive power to do anything it wants to advance its geopolitical interests. He sees the principal vehicle for that as war.

A psychopathic warmonger, Bolton was a major mover behind Bush junior’s disastrous invasion of Iraq which unleashed a Pandora’s Box of evil from which the region is still

Hong Kong spirits stay high

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 12:15

Chen Ying

It’s 100 days since the protests in Hong Kong burst onto TV screens around the world. Since last week [9-14 Sep], the Government has started to make some moves to address the deep structural problems of land and housing, and attempting to copy Macron’s rounds of public consultation.

Even Beijing has issued a statement indicating that young protestors with heavy student loans and poor job prospects faced with no housing solutions could do better by seeking jobs in China!

Hong Kong’s richest tycoon, Lee Ka Shing, has appealed to the Hong Kong government to mend bridges with the “future masters

On the streets 20 September!

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 11:56

Mike Zubrowski, Paul Vernadsky and Vicki Morris

Students in hundreds of locations across the UK will walk out on 20 September on a global climate strike. Students in over 100 countries will be participating, and it looks likely to be the biggest yet.

This time, prominent school strikers have called on workers to join them.

On 8-11 September the Trades Union Congress — representing 5.5 million workers in affiliated trade unions — voted to support the 20 September climate strike, and called on affiliated unions to show solidarity with 30-minute walk-outs.

On 16 September, a poll found that 61% of teachers support students missing lessons for

The tragedy of Arthur Scargill

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 11:48

Jim Denham

Arthur Scargill emerged from semi-retirement from politics to speak at a meeting of the Communist Party of Britain’s wretched little pro-Brexit front organisation Leave Fight Transform (LeFT) in Brighton on 11 September, alongside Eddie Dempsey (the man who said Tommy Robinson supporters were right to hate the “liberal left”) and other assorted xenophobes, nationalists and social conservatives.

According to the Morning Star Scargill said that “every single MP who wants us to go back into Europe should be opposed.” That would be the majority of Labour MPs, then, Arthur?

It’s easy to mock Arthur


Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 11:38

I would like to add a couple of comments to Barrie Hardy’s review “Sweden in the 1930s: a shithole country”.

Barrie mentions the strikes in Adalen in the 1930s. The Swedish director Bo Widerburg made an interesting film featuring these events: Adalen 31 (1969). I haven’t seen it for a long time but if you can find a DVD check it out. Widerburg also directed a film about Joe Hill in 1971.

Barrie mentions the Native American Party, noting that they were “appropriately dubbed the Know Nothings”.
No doubt they were as thick as planks but their name, as far as I am aware, doesn’t originate in their

Labour: oppose Brexit

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 11:32


Boris Johnson is still trying to do his “poundshop Mussolini” act and push through decisions against the duly-voted will of Parliament and against majority opinion in the electorate.

He has been pushed back. He can be stopped.

That calls for a Labour Party and a labour movement with a clear voice for workers’ rights, for migrant rights, for free movement, for social and ecological levelling-up across Europe, against Brexit, for Remain and Transform.

Not for mumbling, triangulation, and equivocation.

Johnson has been defeated in every vote he’s called in Parliament. The condemnation of him as a

A poundshop Lloyd George?

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 11:19

Colin Foster

“Principles mean nothing to him — never have. His mind doesn’t work that way.

“It’s both his strength and his weakness”.

That was how the Tory politician Arthur Balfour described David Lloyd George, prime minister 1916-22, a leading government minister 1906-16, and a dominant figure in Liberal Party politics for most of the first half of the 20th century.

A minister who worked with Lloyd George saw him as having an “absolute contempt for detail” but a strange capacity to improvise and “pick up the essential details of a question by conversation”.

A biographer described him as “always in a

Preview of Labour conference

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 11:14

Michael Elms

2019 Labour Party Conference (21-25 September, Brighton) is an opportunity for socialists in the Labour Party to stop the political retreat that threatens to bring to an end the left-wing “Corbyn surge” which started in 2015.

The most pressing business is about Brexit. 90 motions have been sent in about Brexit. 81 of them call for Labour to take a clear Remain stance. Most originate with left wing Remain groups Labour for a Socialist Europe and Another Europe is Possible.

Yet a few days before conference, a small group of senior trade union bureaucrats met with Corbyn’s staff and tried to pre

John Mann becomes a Tsar

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 11:04

Jim Denham

Labour MP John Mann is standing down as an MP to become a Tory adviser. He will take up a full-time role as the government’s “antisemitism tsar”.

Mann’s record on other issues is so bad that his elevation is likely to do more harm than good to the fight against antisemitism.

A Bassetlaw constituent of John Mann’s got it right back in 2016, writing on an internet chat forum: “[Mann] could probably be mistaken for UKIP most of the time. He’s pretty awful, though I did enjoy him shouting and swearing at Ken Livingstone a few weeks ago.”

Theresa May appointed Mann as her adviser on tackling

Peronism: not a model for socialists

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 10:36

Eduardo Tovar

In an interview featured in Tim Alberta’s new book American Carnage: On the Front Lines of the Republican Civil War and the Rise of President Trump, President Donald Trump compared Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to Eva Perón.

Specifically, Trump remarked that Ocasio-Cortez has “talent”, but “doesn’t know anything”. This alludes to how Eva Perón went from popular radio and film actress to powerful symbol for the political movement spearheaded by her husband, Juan Perón. The latter was President of Argentina from June 1946 to September 1955, and again from October 1973 until his death in July

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