Frontline

Tubeworker — 23/02/2017: Protect Migrants' Rights - Hands Off Our Workmates!

Author: 

Tubeworker

The latest edition of Tubeworker, an industrial bulletin for London Underground workers, by London Underground workers.

Click here to download the PDF.

The latest edition of Tubeworker, an industrial bulletin for London Underground workers, by London Underground workers.

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Southern drivers reject sell-out: back to the picket lines!

The votes are in, and Aslef drivers on Southern have delivered a resounding "no thanks" to their leaders' sell-out deal, blowing the dispute against Driver Only Operation wide open again.

The scores on the doors were 54.1% against the deal and 45.9% for it, on a high turnout of 72.7%.

Trade Unions: 

Russian Parliament sanctions domestic violence

Author: 

Ann Field

10,000 women in Russia die of domestic violence every year. 40% of all serious violent crime in Russia and over 25% of murders take place in the home. Around 36,000 women are victims of domestic violence every day, and so too are 26,000 children.

These are the official statistics. The real statistics will be far higher. Many women do not report incidents of domestic violence, either for fear of repercussions from their husband or partner, or because complaints are often ignored by the police.

New law decriminalises "modest" violence on the grounds of protecting the "traditional family".

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Why we say “open borders”

Author: 

Editorial

Those of us who took to the streets to protest against Donald Trump’s “Muslim ban”, a racist restriction on the freedom of movement of people from seven majority-Muslim countries, were protesting against immigration controls.

Not all of us necessarily saw what we were doing in those terms. Many of us were mobilised by something more visceral and instinctive: a raw opposition to the obvious prejudice and injustice implied by the ban, and by many other of Trump’s policies. That reflexive opposition to injustice is the beginning of much political wisdom, in this and other cases.

Immigration controls are part of the means states use to construct and maintain their power. When those states are administered by authoritarians and racists, as in the case of the current US administration.

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Tories claim dictatorial powers over Brexit

Author: 

Editorial

On Wednesday 8 February, just after Solidarity has gone to press, Parliament will vote on the third reading of the Tories’ Brexit bill.

On 7 February the Tories said that, yes, Parliament can vote on whatever deal they come up — but only between that and what no MP will support, quitting the EU without a deal, i.e. having no closer arrangement with Europe than with Afghanistan or Zimbabwe.

Citing the 23 June referendum as their authority, the Tories now claim the right to shape Brexit their way, above and outside all democratic control.

The Tories now claim the right to shape Brexit their way, above and outside all democratic control.

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Southern drivers: reject this sell-out!

This is the text of a special bulletin produced by supporters of Off The Rails

, a platform for rank-and-file rail workers, urging ASLEF drivers on Southern to vote to reject the deal aimed at settling the dispute over "Driver Only Operation" (DOO).

To download a PDF copy of the bulletin for distribution, click here.


The settlement that has come out of the talks between ASLEF and Southern at the TUC represents possibly the worst sell out of workers in recent memory.

Trade Unions: 

Trump: threat to abortion rights worldwide

Author: 

Elizabeth Butterworth
Trump-Pence are going after abortion rights in the US as well as globally.

One of Trump’s first executive orders after being installed as President was to reintroduce the Mexico City Policy, or “Global Gag Rule”: a technicality in the funding of overseas aid, which was introduced by Reagan, revoked by Clinton, re-introduced by Bush and revoked again by Obama.

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Stop Trump: On the streets against the “Muslim ban”

Author: 

Editorial

Organise, on the streets and in the labour movement! Argue for socialist, democratic, internationalist ideas which offer a real answer both to Trump’s rancid, right-wing, regression, and to the discredited status quo. That is how we can block Trump.

Against a determined push by Trump, the liberal bourgeoisie will not safeguard the mild cosmopolitanism on which it prides itself. It falls to the labour movement to defend even the limited bourgeois ameliorations.

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On Guard - 17/01/2017: Solid united strikes lead to talks

Author: 

On Guard

The first issue of a socialist bulletin for Northern workers in Sheffield, published by Workers' Liberty.

Read online here.

The first issue of a socialist bulletin for Northern rail workers, published by Workers' Liberty.

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Trade Unions: 

Union branch motions defending free movement

Author: 

AWL Tube workers

Two RMT branches, Bakerloo Line and Finsbury Park, have recently passed this motion in defence of free movement, and calling for solidarity with refugees and migrants.

The motion also calls for RMT-backed MPs to vote against any Brexit deal that restricts immigration and attacks workers' rights.

The issue is contentious within the union, which was the most prominent labour-movement voice calling for a "leave" vote in the EU referendum.

The motion is slated for debate at the union's AGM in June.


This branch notes:

Two RMT branches, Bakerloo Line and Finsbury Park, have recently passed this motion in defence of free movement, and calling for solidarity with refugees and migrants.

Trade Unions: 

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Corbyn is wrong on voting for May's Article 50

Author: 

Martin Thomas

Jeremy Corbyn's decision (26 January 2017) to impose a three-line whip on Labour MPs to vote for Theresa May's Brexit Article 50 bill is wrong and destructive.

The 23 June referendum did not create any mandate or moral obligation to endorse or facilitate Theresa May's Tory, "hard-Brexit", anti-immigrant version of quitting the European Union.

Jeremy Corbyn's three-line whip on Labour MPs to vote for Theresa May's Brexit Article 50 bill is wrong and destructive.

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Tubeworker — 26/01/2017: Prepare To Strike Again!

Author: 

Tubeworker

The latest edition of Tubeworker, an industrial bulletin for London Underground workers, by London Underground workers.

Click here to download the PDF.

The latest edition of Tubeworker, an industrial bulletin for London Underground workers, by London Underground workers.

Publications: 

Panic argument used to justify Momentum coup

Supporters of the coup in Momentum are reported as rationalising it on the grounds that it was a necessary panic measure to stop Momentum being proscribed by the Labour Party.

Suzanne Gannon, a Momentum member and not a co-thinker of ours, has written an interesting report on her blog (http://creativepens.net/momentum/democracy-and-momentum/, 23 January 2017) of a "Yorkshire and Humber Regional meeting yesterday [22 January] with fifteen comrades from eight branches across the region and a staff member from Momentum’s central office in attendance".

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

The freedom of movement debate - the Swiss experience

Author: 

Sebastian Osthoff
The problems with left support for protectionist labour market policies.

Brexit has triggered a debate on free movement which appears to be a veritable free for all. Many on the left now seem to think, that the working class is served best with a protectionist labour market policy. It is not often that Switzerland might provide lessons for the labour movement but we have been going through this for the last 20 years.

Momentum Steering Committee vows to continue organising

"As members of the Steering Committee, we feel we have a duty to uphold the will of the democratic structures which elected us; failing to do so devalues democracy and alienates people. The National Committee will convene as planned on January 28th in London..."

The steering committee of the left Labour group Momentum - those who do not accept the Momentum office's abolition of all Momentum's democratic structures in a coup on 10 January - have launched a website and put out a statement.

Read more here: https://momentumsteeringcommittee.wordpress.com

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Organise for a member-led Momentum

Author: 

Simon Nelson

Momentum was launched in early October 2015, by a segment of the organisers of the effort which got Jeremy Corbyn elected Labour leader on 12 September 2015.

Boosted by the flood of new Labour members around Corbyn's election in 2015, and a second flood around his re-election in 2016, Momentum now has 20,000 members, which probably makes it the biggest membership-defined left caucus in the Labour Party's history.

Local Momentum groups should remain active, and network with each other, after the 10 January coup

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Shocking turn of events! Stay in Momentum and build a local groups network!

Author: 

Jill Mountford

Momentum Steering Committee member Jill Mountford has published the following post on her blog https://jillsmomentumblog.wordpress.com/. Members of the Steering Committee summarily dissolved by email on the evening of 10 January are meeting (as they had been scheduled to do) on 11 January, and further news is expected after that meeting.

Momentum Steering Committee member Jill Mountford has published the following post on her blog about the "coup" in Momentum which abolished all its existing committees on the evening of 10 January.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

The left should start working towards Labour Party conference 2017

Author: 

CLPD

The Campaign for Labour Party Democracy has put out this briefing about preparations for the 2017 Labour Party conference.

CLPs should currently be deciding when they will elect their delegates to this year's national Conference.

Elections for CLPD delegates, and nominations for CAC and NCC, are likely to be decided shortly.

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Unite general secretary election: don't let Coyne close down the Labour revival!

We should vote for Len McCluskey in the Unite general secretary election for which nominations open on 16 January because it is a first-past-the-post poll, and without left-wing votes going to McCluskey there is a real risk Gerard Coyne will win.

Coyne is heavily backed by the Labour right wing around Tom Watson and Progress. If he wins, he will swing Unite decisively to the anti-Corbyn camp. That could close down all the openings for Labour revival opened by Jeremy Corbyn's leadership victories.

Vote Coyne, and get Watson and Progress: that's the deal.

A Coyne victory could close down the openings for Labour revival opened by Jeremy Corbyn's leadership victories.

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Momentum: for unity!

Author: 

Simon Nelson

After the Momentum national committee on Saturday 3 December voted that Momentum should have a decision-making delegate conference — the big controversial decision! — figures on the fringes of Momentum, and some within it, have launched a social-media and mass-media outcry against Workers’ Liberty and Solidarity.

This outcry should be resisted with an insistence on unity, a focus on positive campaigning, and a refusal to let the mass media or the Labour machine’s notorious Compliance Unit split us.

An appeal for constructive unity following the 3 December National Committee

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