Maverick George Galloway offends SWP sensibilities

George Galloway's decision to try his hand at 'reality' TV as a Big brother contestant has thrown Respect and the Socialist Workers Party into disarray, to put it mildly. Peter Manson reports

Putting two fingers up to the very notion of democracy and accountability, Galloway consulted no-one in Respect about his decision to take part, let alone ask the permission of the leadership. According to national secretary John Rees, Respect was informed just 24 hours beforehand that the organisation's most prominent leader and figurehead would be incommunicado for up to three weeks, "bereft of watch, phone, family and all contact with the outside world" (Galloway statement, made public January 7).

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Letters

Clunky prose; Iraq slaughter; Population point; Temperance; Vote for John; Hypocrisy; Kong-connected; Back on track; Wasted effort; Kennedy effect; DSP front; PRC principle; Venezuela

Faith schools too hot for SWP

The left must takes this issue seriously, says Michelle Euston. After all, faith schools are envisaged in the government's white paper on education as a wedge to break up comprehensive education system

Rumblings of rebellion

SW Kenning reports on last weekend's SWP conference

Dying on its feet

Around 150 people gathered in the Konferenzhaus in Vienna to prepare for the next European Social Forum, which will take place in Athens on May 4-7 2006. Rifondazione Comunista's turn to government hung over the event like a Damocles sword - together with an unwillingness to take any decisive steps forward. Tina Becker fears that we might be witnessing the beginning of the end of the ESF as a vehicle for international cooperation

Less than gorgeous

Is it possible for working class politicians to utilise an established cultural form, designed for a completely different purpose, in order to bolster an oppositional message? Lawrence Parker takes a look at Galloway in the Big brother house

Learning from defeat

Panayotis Yulis is a representative of the Network for Political and Social Rights in Greece (Epohi), which works with immigrants and political prisoners. He is a member of the Greek Social Forum and on the organising committee for the ESF in Athens

Bolivia shifts left

Which effect will Evo Morales' victory have on the working class and the political landscape in South America? Eddie Ford takes a closer look

Domination theology

Paul Greenaway reviews Richard Dawkins's The root of all evil? (Channel 4, Monday January 9 and 16, 8pm)

Scramble for centre ground

Emily Bransom comments on the resignation of Charles Kennedy

Take control of the Bolivarian revolution

Nick Rogers disputes Paul Hampton's assertion that the Chavez regime is Bonapartist and calls for a radical transfer of power to the working class

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