Socialist Party

From "Militant" to the Socialist Party: a collection

The Socialist Party held a special conference on 21 July to discuss issues from the conflict in the international network linked to the SP (Committee for a Workers’ International, CWI). Delegates representing around 200 members, have chosen to split away from the SP and align themselves with the majority in the CWI. Articles on the Socialist Party tradition. Background on special conference The Crisis in the CWI All articles on the Socialist Party The curious incident of the left that didn't bark (2017) An encounter with the shy Bishop Taaffe (2011) Will the SP debate Libya? (2011) Who are the...

Vote Independent Left in PCS!

Elections for the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the civil service union PCS and for important departmental committees will soon be underway (nominations close 12 March, balloting will run from 16 April to 7 May). Three sets of candidates will be standing: the PCS Independent Left (IL), Left Unity (LU), and the Broad Left Network (BLN). The IL, which includes Workers’ Liberty, currently has three members on the NEC and successfully campaigned in 2019 for the election of long standing PCS activist John Moloney as Assistant General Secretary (AGS) on the basis of a workers’ candidate on a...

Industrial news in brief

The ballot for general secretary of the civil service union PCS will open on 7 November and close on 12 December. For the first time in 18 years, the sitting general secretary, Mark Serwotka, faces a challenge from the left. Bev Laidlaw, the Independent Left candidate, got 17 branch nominations, topping the number of 15 required to get on the ballot paper. Serwotka got 62 nominations. The candidate backed by the Socialist Party, Marion Lloyd, got 39. The SP was a dominant force in the union, closely allied with Serwotka, until about a year and a half ago. In the Assistant General Secretary...

Turkish troops out of Syria!

Since the Turkish invasion of Kurdish-controlled northern Syria started on 9 October, over 160,000 civilians have been displaced, with at least fifty civilian deaths already. The invasion immediately followed the announcement by Donald Trump that US troops would be withdrawn from northern Syria. Trump’s “America First” policy is confused and totally inconsistent. Attempts by the White House to portray Trump’s move as a step in disengaging the US from overseas conflicts were shown to be a scam when Trump also announced sending 2,000 soldiers to Saudi Arabia in a move against Iran. The decision...

Left split in Ireland

At the end of September, the Socialist Party of Ireland’s TD (member of parliament) Paul Murphy announced that he was leaving the SP to establish a new political organisation, RISE. RISE stands for Radical, Internationalist, Socialist, Environmentalist. It will not register as a political party, and its candidates will stand in elections under the Solidarity-People Before Profit banner. The move comes after a year-long debate inside the Irish SP about how the party should relate to wider movements, such as the environmentalist movement, which was part of a wider dispute within the SP’s...

A Labour government without voting Labour?

The leadership of the civil service union PCS, the NEC [National Executive Committee] has decided that in the looming general election the union should call on members in England and Wales to vote Labour, on the grounds that a Labour government under the leadership and policies of Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell is in the interests of PCS members. In a different tack worthy of separate membership discussion, the NEC has also decided that in Scotland it should instead urge members “to vote to Get the Tories Out” while emphasising the necessity of a Corbyn-led UK government. The decision to...

Back Bev Laidlaw for PCS General Secretary!

The election for general secretary of the civil service union PCS is now well into the branch nomination phase. Nominations close on 14 October. Voting will run from 7 November to 12 December. There are three known candidates: Mark Serwotka, the existing General Secretary; Marion Lloyd, the candidate of the Socialist Party (SP), a current PCS NEC [National Executive] member Marion Lloyd; and Bev Laidlaw, candidate of the Independent Left (IL), and also a current NEC member. Bev Laidlaw has been a consistent opponent of the bombastic and failed PCS leadership. She has been elected to the NEC...

When leftists argue that Labour should have voted with Johnson

Since the big vote in Parliament on 3 September, most of the left press has made its chief call for Labour to back Boris Johnson’s call for a super-early snap election. The arguments, or the arguments on the face of it, are odd, at least. Labour and the other opposition parties do not want to give Johnson an easy get-out from implementing Parliament’s instructions to avoid a no deal Brexit. They want to “hold his feet to the fire”, as they put it, and make him comply with the law. They don’t want to give him a chance to call a snap election, date it for after 31 October, and then confront the...

The left and the coup: side-stepping the issues

The Communist Party of Britain (Morning Star) claims that Boris Johnson’s shutdown of Parliament was really the fault of the anti-Brexiters in Parliament. Other left groups and papers which have backed Brexit have been less off-the-wall, but maybe more confusing. Socialist Worker essentially calls on its readers to shout other slogans so loudly as to drown out all thoughts about Brexit. It writes: “There was fury at Johnson [at the anti-coup protests]. Beyond that people came with a range of views. “A substantial number had EU flags or anti-Brexit placards. But others were focused on fighting...

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