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Communist University Summer 2022

'War & peace', August 13-20

A minimum-maximum programme

This is the mission statement of the Marxist Unity Slate - a set of proposals for the 2021 convention of the Democratic Socialists of America. The aim is to achieve democratic discipline and principled election campaigns, as well as uniting Marxists around a vision of a mass working class socialist party

SWP conference

Here we reprint short extracts from the first two of the SWP’s Pre-conference discussion bulletin. We have chosen the most interesting, or more accurately, the least dull, passages.

SPEW split on SWP

We reproduce some recent correspondence between the Socialist Party in England and Wales and the Socialist Workers Party, together with a report of a meeting between the two groups, taken from SPEW’s Members Bulletin No37, June 1999.

Politics and money

Was Trotsky a Kautskyist?

Fisc manifesto

This document, sent anonymously to the Weekly Worker, is said to have been adopted by an SLP branch and sent to the NEC for discussion. It has all the hallmarks of the politics of Arthur Scargill’s former courtiers-in-chief, the Fourth International Supporters Caucus, most of whom have now left the party. The comrades call for the banning of “controversial” material - except, of course, their own

Left Euro results

Militant talk

Document produced by a SPEW comrade involved in ‘London Socialist’ split discussions

Left results

Fight this Blairite ban

Euroland and internationalism

Around the left

Report from NEC

Part of document circulated to SLP membership

United Socialists edge forward

United front

Hands off Iraq!

Socialist voice

Terminal decline

The 13 former members of the Merseyside committee of the Socialist Party in England and Wales, suspended by the Taaffe leadership, explain why they could not agree to the seven-point ultimatum of the executive committee

Liquidationism

SPEW’s executive committee responds to its suspended Merseyside members (for their statement see Weekly Worker November 12)

Congress ‘postponed’

Scargill blames SLP members

London Socialist Alliance

No shibboleths

Rosser’s dealing with Scargill exposed

Scargill’s secret March 3 letter to NUJ general secretary John Foster blows the gaff on Mary Rosser and the Morning Star management

Tarnished image

Report on the Weekly Worker fighting fund

Revolutionary democracy

This, as amended, was agreed at the first aggregate meeting of the Revolutionary Democratic Communist Tendency

Revolutionary democratic communism

Thesis on communist rapprochement

New tendency’s first meeting

SLP National Executive Committee - election results

Message to SLP members

Agreed statement of 57 congress delegates and observers

The Bolshevik Revolution

From The Call, paper of the British Socialist Party, December 6 1917

Resounding success

Theses on the results of the September 11 referendum

Socialist Labour Party and China

An exchange of letters has taken place in the SLP over an article by ‘Don Hoskins’ in Socialist News (September/October), praising the regime in China (see Weekly Worker September 11). Clearly the SLP is riven with deep ideological contradictions. Perhaps China will result in meltdown

Intolerant regime

Leading democracy campaigner Ian Driver has resigned from the SLP. Here is his resignation letter

Left cooperation forbidden

The following letter was sent by Arthur Scargill to Chris Weller, secretary of the Kent Socialist Alliance

Cardiff calls for open debate

This letter has been sent to the editor of Socialist News, the Socialist Labour Party’s paper, by one of the most active SLP branches

Accurately produced

Peter Manson replies for the Weekly Worker

Draft statement

Draft statement to the National Council of the Scottish Socialist Alliance on misleading and false statements about the SSA which have been circulated by the CPGB/Weekly Worker

No debate at TUC

Joe Marino, general secretary of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union and a member of the Socialist Labour Party, spoke to the Weekly Worker about last week’s Trade Union Congress

What the papers say

‘Scottish Militant Labour and the Socialist Alliance’

Extracts from an internal SML document

Socialist democracy and democratic centralism

We reprint a document of an organised tendency within the Socialist Party involving John Bulaitis, Phil Hearse, Sarah Parker, David Lyons, Paul Morehouse and James White.

Republicanism can unite a new left

At Communist University ’97, Dave Craig of the RDG challenged Phil Stott of SML (see Weekly Worker July 31) over its policy on Scottish devolution

Tackling danger head on

Below we reprint Arthur Scargill’s article in defence of the witch hunt, as it appeared in Socialist News (August 1997)

John Maclean’s release

From 'The Call', paper of the British Socialist Party, July 19 1917

Democracy and the Socialist Labour Party

Open letter from Terry Burns, the SLP’s parliamentary candidate in Cardiff Central

Scargill: ‘Keep quiet or get out’

Once again Arthur Scargill lays down the law against democracy in the SLP - this time in his reply to Martin Wicks. The comrade had forwarded him partisan suggestions for extending democracy in the SLP. The document he sent was signed by a number of SLP comrades and published in the Weekly Worker (June 12)

Marxist Bulletin joins witch hunt

An expelled member of Vauxhall CSLP and supporter of the Marxist Bulletin, Alan Gibson, tries to save himself by condemning his former comrades

Climate of mistrust

Nick Wrack resigned as editor of Militant shortly before a special conference of Militant Labour voted to change the organisation’s name to ‘Socialist Party’ at the end of last year. His appearance at the June meeting of the SP’s National Committee caused some surprise, as many comrades were under the impression that he had stood down from that body too. His letter of resignation, reproduced here, has been circulating unofficially within the organisation. It demonstrates that the SP still has a long way to go to achieve the openness necessary in a democratic workers’ party

Signing up for democracy

Patrick Sikorski’s resignation

Workers’ alternative to New Labour

John Ireland is the Communication Workers Union assistant divisional officer for North Wales and the North-West. He spoke in a personal capacity to Peter Manson of the Weekly Worker about his decision to join the Socialist Labour Party

Break from Labourism - vote Labour

A statement by party members in the South-West on the SLP electoral policy

Police unpopular

Howard attack, tip of the iceberg

The Tories’ latest attack on asylum seekers and the tightening of immigration controls is another in the round of attacks on the whole of the working class. But the Labour Party is eagerly vying for a leading position in the chauvinist league. A united working class response is urgently needed. It is therefore important to examine the gains we have made since the last TUC ‘Unite against racism’ march

Blair’s men back trust butchers

Public sector workers have only their own muscle to rely on

Knives are out for the public sector

After the unions’ disgraceful climbdown in the healthworkers’ pay dispute, at last an event which the leaders can support with unbridled enthusiasm.

Press slanders union boss

Dockers fight old battles again

Tories go for the kill

Right now the Tories are plotting to introduce US-style workfare, hoping to deprive the unemployed of their benefits. This goes hand in hand with increased legal action and banning orders on strikes in the public sector. What next?

Fight for what we need!

The Tories, Labour and the bosses all say the state cannot afford to pay for our health and education. But if the system can’t meet our basic needs, then the system must go, not our schools and hospitals

Healthworkers speak out

Getting active

Comrade Tanya from South London explains why she has recently joined the SWP, posing the question, “Is the SWP the ‘true’ revolutionary party?”

Labour ready to hammer workers

The TUC conference has been dominated by Labour’s modernisation and the demand - or not - for a minimum wage. So can we win a living wage? What is a living wage? And what is ‘fair’ anyway?

It’s you! On the bosses’ hit-list

As millions dream of escape through the lottery, Tory and Labour alike seek to blame capitalism’s victims for the slow but sure economic tumble-down which is causing unemployment, poverty and alienation. Are you on the hit-list yet?

Hunger strikers weaken

Communist Party Offensive 95

Defend Dave Carr, defend the NHS

Fight Job Seekers Allowance

The TUC called a national meeting last week on the JSA, which aims to penalise the unemployed still more for the ‘crime’ of being out of work

Site safety worsens

Dundee campaign against hospital cuts and closures

The fight for a minimum wage: £4.15 is not enough

The Fire Brigades Union and Ucatt, the building workers’ union, have forced the issue of a minimum wage onto the TUC agenda. But their £4.15 is woefully inadequate

Rail union bosses sabotage strike

The biggest quango

Gould imposter

Are profits really more important than people?

Childcare is now a burden on society according to the scapegoating bigots. So what kind of society is this?

Squeezing out profit

US state’s licence to kill

Mumia Abu-Jamal was due to be executed on August 17. How long will the US state get away with murder?

Labour is bad for your health

Following the ‘National pay for a National Health Service’ demonstration in London last Saturday it is clear that the job of organising the massive anger against hospital closures and health cuts cannot be left to our union leaderships

Fight Labour-Tory cutting consensus: Fight for health!

As thousands of healthworkers and their supporters pour into London for this weekend’s demonstration, NHS bosses are continuing their efforts to undermine the fight for better pay

Blair attacks welfare as bosses’ pay soars

As the bosses agree that they are worth every penny of the millions they pay themselves, more and more they are looking to Tony Blair’s ‘new Labour’ to screw down even harder on workers

Fight against low pay

Healthworkers and railworkers are just the tip of the iceberg in the fight against the bosses’ full frontal attack on pay. While quango and privatised utility heads award themselves huge pay rises, workers across the board are having their pay slashed. This week Labour jumped on the slashing bandwagon, promising to keep workers’ pay below minimum

Major or Blair, the gun will turn on us

John Major lives to fight another day. But he will now be forced to appease the rabid ‘hard right’ and attack the working class with renewed determination. That appeasement may be short-lived, but Tony Blair may succeed where Major has failed in uniting rightwing prejudice behind him

Communist Party Offensive 95

Communism through communist unity

From The Call, paper of the British Socialist Party, June 24 1920

Euston railworkers defend safety

Labour prepares to step into Tory shoes

This week the proverbial Tory boil burst. The Tories cannot save themselves by lancing the Europhobe boils, as they would have us believe. The party is disintegrating from top to bottom and is increasingly a blight on workers’ lives. Who knows what will happen to their disastrous leader. The real question is what will happen after the Tory collapse

Labour, Tory - both rotten to the core!

First the Tory mafia, now the Labour mafia. All the Labour councillors on the Monklands East district council have been suspended from the party, accused of dishing out ‘jobs for the boys’ and granting sectarian favours. Why should we hand power to any of these corrupt hypocrites?

Healthworkers’ unity sabotaged

The limitations of the ‘official’ trade union movement have been made obvious over the last few weeks. The RCN wants to go it alone, while the Unison leadership is now having cosy chats with Virginia Bottomley. We need a drastically different approach

Workers unite to smash pay divide

This week both healthworkers and railworkers are demonstrating against the poverty pay which the bosses are trying to foist on them. The disgusting offers of one percent to healthworkers and three percent to railworkers come at the same time as the bosses are awarding themselves 65-75% pay rises. They will get away with this daylight robbery just as long as we let them

Railworkers - Prepare for action!

More and more workers are saying, ‘Enough is enough’. They want to put a stop to job losses, wage cuts and worse conditions. But we need much more than enthusiasm to win these battles

Sinking in sleaze

This week has seen the Tories collapse into a sewer of sleaze and confusion. They are reduced to saving their own skins and quite clearly the party is unfit to govern, even by capitalist standards. Rupert Murdoch would be happy with a change of government, and perhaps even the Iron Lady will consider leaving the sinking Tory ship after Blair praised her so eloquently last month. But the working class needs to get rid of the whole stinking system, not replace Tory sleaze-balls with Labour ones

Now for action!

The RCN conference on Tuesday showed the extent of healthworkers’ anger towards the government and the system itself. The danger is that union leaders will cave in and settle for some shabby pay-cutting deal. Only rank and file workers can make sure they do not get away with it

Fight for your health

The government is pressing ahead with plans to close down more London hospitals after forcing through its policy this week. As well as the world famous Guys and Barts, Edgware, the Brook in Greenwich and many others will go - unless workers themselves make a stand

The whole picture

Simone Aspis is a well known activist for disability rights and this week became a supporter of the Communist Party of Great Britain. We spoke to her about her political ideas and development

Return to liberal roots

In the run up to the Labour Party’s special conference this weekend, we spoke to Mark Fischer, National Organiser of the CPGB, about the significance of the clause four debate and the tasks posed for the working class in the face of Blair’s ‘new’ Labour

Artist draws in support

Sack the Tories! Sack Blunkett! Dump the lot!

This week the teachers have been denounced and threatened by Tory, Labour and union leaders alike. Teachers are right to respond to attacks on education with ballots for strike action. Demonstrators are right to harangue Blunkett after his disgusting promise to be more Tory than Tory in office. But we must go beyond the slogan ‘Sack the Tories’

Vote against council cuts

Last week teachers throughout the country demonstrated and took strike action against education cuts. Meanwhile the healthworkers’ unions are still dragging their feet in opposing their pay offer. The communist campaign against attacks on jobs and services has received much support. But you can go one step further: vote Communist on May 4 and join us in fighting back. Demand what we need, not what capitalism can afford

Vote Communist on May 4!

Workers have no faith in either Labour or the Tories. But you can use your vote positively

Opportunists moving right

Fighting education cuts

Sharpening up our act

Turn protest into workers' muscle

The time has now passed for building up ‘public support’. NHS workers already enjoy overwhelming support from the working class

Health, Education - Fight back together!

As both health and education workers make their voices heard in protest against attacks on pay, jobs and services, now could not be a better time to organise a united fightback

Cost cutting in Dundee hospitals

No ration on health

Last week two cases highlighted how money talks in today’s National Health Service. A man died after being airlifted two hundred miles to an intensive care bed because his own regional unit is being run down; and top judges have ruled that a 10-year old girl cannot have the treatment that could save her life

Labour perks

Fighting fund

Report of the Weekly Worker fighting fund

Nurses’ unity under threat

While nurses are being offered a pay rise that is in fact a pay cut those lucky lads at bust Barings Bank are to get a million pound bonus to peck up their spirits. Greedy British Gas boss Cedric Brown and his fellow directors have just slipped themselves a million free shares. They live in a world where the millions are just perks. The world is hard, but it’s fair. More than fair to a few: much less than fair to the rest

Organise against the pay scandal!

With whole sections of workers furious over low pay and threats to their jobs, anger is mounting against the bosses’ pay perks. Major is promising ‘action’ to curb them, but all is not as it seems

Nurses condemn 1% pay insult

Organise to fight back together

United fight against 1%

In the face of a storm of protest from healthworkers the Tories are pleading poverty. They are desperate to fund their tax cut bribes at the expense of our pay packets and public services. Their attempt to split the workforce up around the country through the divisive local negotiations tactic must be responded to by a united national campaign

Stuff the market! Nurses and teachers fight back!

United action will send the government running for cover

No speed ups No job cuts

Latest for the axe are teachers’ jobs. A limited pay rise will be accompanied by education cuts, forcing job losses and increasing an already high workload. Teaching is already one of the worst professions for stress due to overwork and restructuring. But making fewer workers do more work for less pay is a trend that goes right across the board

Workers’ action to stop council cuts

Councils across the country have announced huge spending cuts as a result of reduced government grant support for the new financial year. Some areas will be worse hit than others and Labour and Tory councillors alike are jostling for their share of a smaller cake. Only workers’ organisation against all cuts and all closures can halt the attack by both government and council. That is the message Communist Party candidates will be taking to the local elections in April and May

Hang Churchill

From The Call, paper of the British Socialist Party, January 29 1920

Irish struggle demands new direction

As partisans of the Irish cause gather to commemorate the 23rd anniversary of the Bloody Sunday massacre, when 14 unarmed Irish civilians were murdered by British troops, the ‘peace process’ steamrollers on. Revolutionaries in the Six Counties need to consider how they will react to the new situation

Germany going ‘red’

From The Call, paper of the British Socialist Party, January 22 1920

Labour’s clause four dead-end

Labour’s infighting over clause four is in full swing now with almost every left group imaginable inside and out of the Labour Party jumping on board to defend the clause. Everybody knows that it has meant nothing to the Labour Party in power and that the wording itself means little. But just as with the leadership contest, until we are able to build an effective alternative to Labour the left will hang desperately on to its skirt tails

Tory fat cats

Scrap private education!

Workers need the very best for our children. That means a completely free education system, the ending of privilege for the rich and the taking over of private schools under workers’ control

Unemployed told to work or starve

Christmas is supposed to be a time of relaxation with the family. But for most workers the drudgery and stress of everyday life is never far away. As the unemployed and low paid try to make ends meet, the rest wonder how long they will be able to hold on to their jobs