Mike Wood's blog

What is Trotskyism

Can we talk of “Trotskyism” as a distinct entity, as opposed to simply a list of Trotsky’s theories? Does Trotskyism exist independently of Trotsky, or is it just the name we give to his writings? If we consider Trotskyism to have life beyond Trotsky’s words then do we define Trotskyists as those...

Socialism, Feminism, Meaning and Understanding

A few weeks ago I was at a meeting in Leeds, entitled “Socialist Feminism and the Fight for equality”, publicising Feminist Fightback,. The meeting quickly became a debate on whether socialists need to be involved in the feminist movement, and whether they need to describe themselves as feminists....

Lenin and the Iraqi Resistance

A certain quote from Lenin seems to be doing the rounds at present, and it is starting to annoy me somewhat.

When I argue with SWP members that class is quite important in questions of national liberation, and that we shouldn’t support the resistance but instead the workers’ movement, I am...

Tory Councillor in Racism Shock

If you haven't heard about this already you might like to look at this article.

Its about a Tory councillor and prospective Parliamentary candidate, Ellenor Bland, sending a horrendously racist poem around the office. She says she recieved it from her husband, who is also a Tory councillor....

England Prevails

A nice review of V for Vendetta for you. I hope you like it.

This could’ve been great. V for Vendetta is an angry story about the overthrow of a British fascist regime, originally written as an attack on Thatcherism and British nationalism in the 1980s. Its central character, V, remains...

Zanon at York University

We had about 50 people at York University to listen to Jose Julian Penuneri from the occupied Zanon factory in Argentina last Thursday (16/02/06). That’s the biggest left-leaning meeting I’ve personally seen at the University, with people from the Socialist society, Anarchist society, and People...

Cartoons

It appears the internet has exploded. The protests around the world over the publication of the Danish cartoons have resulted in deaths, boycotts, embassy storming, and a large amount of flag burning. Flame has been liberally chucked around online as well. The AWL decided to publish the cartoons...

Stalinist being watched by Big Brother, oh the irony.

I saw George Galloway go into the Big Brother house last night. I think I've gone slightly hysterical, as I can't seem to think about it without breaking into laughter. This is clearly, quite simply, car crash TV of the highest order.

My optimism, however, appears once again to have gotten the...

Helpful hints to stop rape

Since the Amnesty report revealing a disturbingly large number of people think that drunk girls do indeed somehow deserve to be raped there have been the usual array of commentators asking what young women can do to stop rape. I felt a bit left out at first, seeing all of these bits of advice, none...

But where's the personal sacrifice?

A few weeks back I had a big argument with someone I met at the FEM 05 conference, and I’ve been dwelling on it for a while since. I knew them from York University, and they knew me as a No Sweat activist. We talked briefly about the left at the Uni, and what campaigns were ongoing, or coming up....

The Brothers Grimm

A Brothers Grimm review. Enjoy.

The Brothers Grimm is Terry Gilliam’s latest fantastical extravaganza, with the usual exemplary production values and quirky characters. But is there anything more to this?

In my opinion the short answer is no. This all looks incredibly impressive and...

Nick Griffin and George Orwell

I was at a protest against the BNP yesterday at Leeds Crown Court. Highly enjoyable. Quite a few anti-fascist protestors turned up (1000+) and only a hundred or so BNP members themselves. Most of the BNP were late as well. When I first arrived there was only about 30-40 of them, which cheered me...

Lord of War

A nice review of Lord of War. Directed by Andrew Niccol and starring Nicolas Cage.

Lord of War is a film with a point to make. From the opening credits through to the very final shot this is a bitter, angry, film, but also a very funny one. I enjoyed it immensely.

It’s directed and written...

He's not even Yogi

This Saturday was Freshers Fair at York University, where I study. It’s a pretty small university compared to most around the country, but it has, for some reason, a huge amount of societies. I was on the People and Planet stall and we were opposite, for example, the stall for “Quiet Soc”; a...

Who Watches the Watchmen, Pt II.

A large part of the brilliance of Watchmen is the sheer scope of it, and the seamless way in which the variety of subjects it touches are blended together into one work. It builds from an analysis of individuals and the smallest of events in their lives, and connects this to a commentary on the...

Who Watches the Watchmen?

I’ve been reading Alan Moore’s Watchmen again recently. I’d almost forgotten how brilliant it was. While my enthusiasm for it is still strong I thought I’d write something about it. I’m sorry if you’re not very interested in mid-80s comic books. I can only console you by saying that it really is...

Land of the Dead

Land of the Dead is the fourth zombie film from George Romero, who pretty much started the genre with Night of the Living Dead in the late 1960s. Romero uses the backdrop of a zombie plague to look at the way people interact, their motivations and their flaws. Land of the Dead is considerably...

Sept 14th SWP forum York, Bambery speaking.

I went to a SWP Marxist forum last night with Chris Bambery speaking on “Imperialism, War, and Terror”. Attendance 12, including the speaker and chair, and aside from myself and a sceptical SWPer friend of mine most of the audience seemed to be with Bambery.

It was the usual stuff in his opening...

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