Category: Communist Party Britain
Britain’s communists condemn Johnson’s attacks on democratic freedoms
worker | March 25, 2021 | 8:07 pm | Communist Party Britain, UK | Comments closed

Britain’s communists condemn Johnson’s attacks on democratic freedoms

BRITAIN’S communists have accused Prime Minister Boris Johnson of attacking democratic freedoms on a scale that cannot be justified by the Covid-19 emergency.

Communist Party executive member Alex Gordon told the party’s political committee on Wednesday evening that the policing and spycops Bills currently going through Parliament are examples of the growing centralisation and empowerment of the state and its police and intelligence services.

“They are part of a longer-term trend since 1979, from anti-trade union laws and the privatisation of public spaces patrolled by private security companies to the criminalisation of squatting and the atrocious ‘Windrush’ deportations of British citizens,” he argued.

Mr Gordon said that the current Tier 4 lockdown had abolished even the limited right to protest allowed by the lower tiers and so clearly contravenes the European Convention on Human Rights.

“The danger now is that some of the drastic but temporary Covid-19 restrictions of our hard-won civil liberties might be made permanent if we don’t resist,” he warned.

Mr Gordon pointed to the “over-the-top” police action on Clapham Common against women peacefully protesting against male violence and the £10,000 fine imposed on trade union activist Karen Reissmann for organising a protest as wake-up calls.

“Last Sunday’s pro-democracy protest in Bristol had been peaceful for hours before the eruption of violence played into the hands of Tory and other supporters of repressive ruling-class legislation,” he noted.

The political committee urged people to make the maximum use of their surviving freedoms to fight injustice and pledged communist support for the struggle to defend the right to protest.

May Day is Our Day
worker | May 3, 2020 | 7:12 pm | Communist Party Britain, International Workers' Day | Comments closed


May Day is our day. We are proud to proclaim our movement as the greatest force for fairness

It should not take a pandemic for a Tory government to value working people or to recognise the need for public investment, writes LEN McCLUSKEY

Len McCluskey is general secretary of Unite the Union.

Lies and deception reign in the White House
worker | January 30, 2018 | 7:23 pm | Analysis, Communist Party Britain, Donald Trump | Comments closed

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

ALBERT SCHARENBERG examines the Trump spectacle and the end of truth in the US

A US journalist recently commented in The New York Times that Donald Trump’s presidency marks the coming of age of The Society of the Spectacle — a society in which truth is essentially reduced to a mere hypothesis and consistently subordinated to orchestration.

Indeed, lies and deception reign in the White House. During his first year in office alone, The Washington Post counted more than 2,000 cases in which Trump lied or made misleading statements —equating to roughly five times per day.

The 45th US President, sworn into office just a year ago, may be a notorious denier of truth and understand next to nothing about politics but as a reality TV star and celebrity, however, he definitely commands the media.

Under his presidency, politics has been replaced by a frantic scramble for media coverage. This Twitter-President has made it his habit to hurl out daily insults against his domestic and foreign adversaries. Here, even scandals serve a purpose by drawing in the public as a consumer (ie audience), thus including them as part of the spectacle.

With scandals following the president’s every move, there is little time to analyse one incident before the next one makes the headlines.

The events occurring over the last couple of weeks impressively highlight this fact.

The US president decried African nations as “shitholes” and called for more Norwegian immigrants. His Republican henchmen immediately jumped to his aid, simply disavowing his remarks.

Then, as The Wall Street Journal reported, a Trump lawyer allegedly paid an adult-film star hush money shortly before the 2016 election to keep quiet about her sexual affair with Trump.

Notwithstanding the resistance of even Republican governors, Trump intends to open the nation’s coastlines to offshore drilling—with the exception of the Mar-a-Lago-state of Florida.

Steve Bannon, formerly one of Trump’s closest allies, has been driven from his position, and the noose around Trump’s neck in the Russia affair is getting tighter every day. To make things worse, Michael Wolff’s new book Fire and Fury reveals the grotesque and dilettantish nature of the new administration’s operations.

Few if any presidents have polarised the United States as much as Donald Trump has. The right-wing populist president’s ceaseless attacks on not only his political adversaries, but also the very democratic institutions of the nation — the rule of law, independent media, science — are shaking the country to its core.

While the liberal public does not tire of being incessantly appalled by the president’s erratic behavior, incompetence and permanent string of lies, this administration has pushed its agenda forward in certain policy areas.

Undoubtedly, numerous White House projects have fallen victim to the narcissistic president’s chaos and incompetence; the repeated attempts to reverse the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) are the most infamous example.

Following a long warm-up phase, however, this right-wing government — stacked with representatives of big oil, Wall Street, and the military, and with its majorities in both houses of Congress — has nonetheless managed to implement cornerstones of its programme.

The administration’s greatest success came only a few weeks ago. In adopting the tax reform, the Trump administration has fulfilled the most important demand of Trump’s sponsors, namely to further cater to the rich and to corporations through massive tax reductions.

Interestingly, the Republicans—who had previously insisted on a balanced budget as the holy grail of budget policy under former president Barrack Obama — were not averse to financing the reform with debt, similar to their mode of operation regarding the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Over the coming decade, this reform will lead to an increase of the public deficit of up to $1.5 trillion, unless further cuts are made in other areas. Republicans in Congress are therefore already discussing the alleged necessity of further cutbacks on (already meagre) social welfare payments.

But also below the legislative level, the Trump administration has used its executive powers to change the country’s course in important policy areas.

Headed by a Verizon lobbyist, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) decided to repeal net neutrality regulations last December, a decision which is set to have far-reaching consequences. Moreover, by appointing the dyed-in-the-wool conservative Neil Gorsuch as Supreme Court Justice, Trump has consolidated the Court’s conservative right-wing majority.

Some changes have also taken place below the public radar. In August 2017, for instance, the Department of Labour eliminated all data on workplace fatalities and stipulated that companies with more than 10 employees no longer need to maintain records of occupational accidents and illnesses.

Regarding climate change, the course has changed as well. Against this backdrop, and by no means accidentally, Noam Chomsky dubbed the Republicans the “most dangerous organisation in human history.”

After announcing his withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, Trump proceeded to channel his full support into the oil industry, the economic base of many of his most important supporters.

Scott Pruitt, the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), has largely replaced the scientists working for the Agency with energy sector lobbyists, lifted environmental regulations on water and air pollution, and removed all references to climate change from the government website.

Trump’s first year in office has conclusively disproved the notion that he is a non-ideological deal-maker and prime business partner. In reality, the exact opposite is the case. Thanks to Trump, the open racism that was quieted by the civil rights movement has found its way back into public discourse.

Indeed, Trump’s biography is pervaded by a continuity of racist thought and action. Incidents include his rallying against the (innocent) Central Park Five in the 1980s, his support of the racist Birther movement against Obama, his repeated slander of Mexicans and Muslims, the defamation of the protests by African-American athletes and, most recently, his description of African countries as “shitholes.”

For many observers, the moment of truth came with Trump’s remarks concerning the events in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2017.

Armed with torches, white supremacists and neonazis marched through the town chanting: “Jews will not replace us!” One marcher even raced his car into a group of counter-demonstrators, killing anti-fascist activist Heather Heyer.

Instead of decidedly denouncing the fascist mob, Trump stated that there were “some very fine people on both sides” — a statement that even made many Republicans feel uneasy. His media patron Rupert Murdoch, of all people, was publicly looking for the emergency brake.

According to his biographer David Cay Johnston, Trump would love to be a dictator. After all, as one is inclined to add, President Trump would like to govern the nation like his corporation — in absolutist style, without opposition. His domestic and foreign policy, however, bears both the proof and burden of this fact.

At the international level, Trump has publicly insulted and degraded Washington’s allies, among them Australia, France and Germany. At the same time, he openly embraces authoritarian leaders, from Riyadh to Moscow to Manila. He finds his friends and peers in the likes of European right-wing nationalists such as Nigel Farage, Marine Le Pen, or Jaroslaw Kaczynski.

Trump’s ignorance of the workings of international politics makes him a seemingly unwitting target for continuous hoodwinking by his “bromances”— and threatens to isolate the United States internationally.

Disparaging countries as “shitholes,” foolhardily siding with one party in highly complex conflicts (as with the Jerusalem issue), or insulting nuclear-armed dictators such as Kim Jong Un is not a way to make friends.

By now, foreign leaders have long understood that in order to get what they want, they only need to flatter Trump and receive him in pompous style. After all, Trump’s wishes can easily be gleaned from the president’s Tweets.

Trump’s total incapability is particularly highlighted by his foreign policy actions. After all, Trump’s political decisions are, besides his narcissism, motivated by only one major aim: pleasing his supporters back home.

This holds true for his withdrawal from the climate agreement, the decision concerning Jerusalem, as well as his political sabre-rattling toward Iran.

Ultimately, this also applies to his “shithole” comment and his instrumental criticism of German refugee policy. Neither does he understand the effects his words have in other countries, nor does it interest him in the slightest.

Trump has never attempted to be the president of all US citizens. He always was, and continues to be, exclusively the president of his Republican base. In this group, his popularity remains high; around 80 percent of Republicans agree with his administration. These four-fifths of Republicans, however, translate only into a 35 per cent approval rate in overall society — too little to consolidate Trump’s rule.

Resistance against Trump is therefore as old as his presidency. The Women’s March, held on the day after his inauguration, constituted the largest demonstration the country has ever seen.

At the ballot box, Republicans have recently suffered a series of painful defeats. Much will undoubtedly depend on the results of the mid-term congressional elections in November.

Unfortunately, it is becoming increasingly obvious that the real problem is not Trump but his supporters — the Republican constituency and their mind-set.

Even if Trump were to be removed from office or simply not re-elected, his followers — along with their deep-seated hatred of Latinos and Black people, of those who think differently, of science — will not simply vanish.

In fact, such a development would conceivably lead to an even more emphatic insistence on the fulfilment of the right-wing populist promises. This bodes a lot of trouble and adversity for the post-Trump era.

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McDonald’s workers on historic strike in Britain – Solidarity with their just struggle
worker | September 11, 2017 | 8:06 pm | Communist Party Britain, Communist Party Turkey, Labor, UK | 1 Comment

Monday, September 11, 2017

McDonald’s workers on historic strike in Britain – Solidarity with their just struggle
Their solidarity towards the strike of the workers at McDonald’s fast food chain in Britain expressed labor-trade unions in Greece and Turkey. 
The Trade union of workers in Catering, Hotels, Tourism of Athens issued a statement expressing its solidarity to their colleagues working to McDonald’s in the UK, who went on strike earlier this week, struggling for better salaries and abolition of the “zero hour contracts”. 
More specifically, the union states:
“Every country has two faces. One face represents wealth and luxury, where a minority is exploiting the work of others. On the other hand, there is the face of the majority of the workers struggling to live with poverty wages. Even we, who daily serve food to thousands of people, we do not manage to serve food to our families.
The workers in catering, tourism and hotels of Athens, support your fair demands for better wages, working hours and union recognition.
The flight of every worker for life, working conditions and working rights, is a fight that concerns us all.”
In Istanbul, members of the Communist Party of Turkey raided McDonald’s restaurants in the city addressing the workers and customers, ‘Did you hear? McDonald’s workers are on strike!’
The leaflets announced that McDonald’s has over 1 million employees throughout the world and 85 thousand of them who work in Britain are on strike. It vocalized the demands of the workers for higher hourly pay, union rights and an end to slavish treatment of bosses.
‘Over 200 thousand fast food workers in Turkey work in precarious, unsecure conditions, long hours standing and with low wages. Average hourly pay starts from 7 liras [about 2 dolars] and daily overtime reaches 9 hours, without week-end holiday.’
The leaflet told that  McDonald’s workers under these conditions are expected to seem jocund and keep hardworking. They are monitored by cameras and a momentary rest is an excuse to get fired. Meanwhile the bosses record a turnover of 6 billlion dolars. ‘A “smiling service” in front of the kitchen and a cruel exploitation behind…’
CP of Turkey stated that fast food culture speeds up the reaping of bosses and for workers the only way out is to get organized. “In Britain, Germany, Turkey and elsewhere in the world’said the leaflet, ‘either in McDonald’s or in others, the same exploitation, the same class of bosses. The only way out is to get organized and to act collectively.”
Regarding the historic strike of workers at McDonald’s, we read in the article published at the New Worker (No 1934, 8 September 2017), official newspaper of the New Communist Party of Britain:
WORKERS at two branches of the McDonald’s fast food chain began strike action early on Monday – the first strike at McDonald’s in Britain since the chain first opened in Brit- ain in 1974. The workers are members of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU). They are demanding £10-per-hour minimum pay, union recogni- tion, an end to zero-hours con- tracts and an end to the bullying culture rife behind the scenes at McDonald’s.
Staff at the two branches, in Crayford, Kent and in Cam- bridge, were balloted for strike action and last month voted by 95.7 per cent in favour of the strike. Picket lines outside both branches found support from the general public and other trade unionists and progressives. Later on Monday they travelled to Westminster for a rally.
The workers are angry at the way managers use the zero-hours contracts to bully workers by cutting their hours so they can never be sure what their wages will be. This has led workers to lose their homes through not being able to pay rent. One young woman on the picket line described the bul- lying culture to reporters: “My mum passed away in January and the manager just thought I went on holiday. The way I was treated was really bad. I went into hospital because of the stress of it.”
ess of it.” Twenty-seven-year-old Lew- is Baker, who helped to organise the Crayford strike, said: “There is proper bullying going on here. The conditions have become really bad. There’s discrimination. Hours are cut if you’re not a manager’s favourite. “The fight for £10 an hour is great and it would help us all, but it won’t make working here any better.
“We’ve had bosses tell us this strike is a joke. But it’s not a joke,” he said gesturing to the crowd of supporters. “For everyone to come here and show them we have support is just incredible.”
In a statement before the strike, Ian Hodson, president of the BFAWU, said: “For far too long, workers in fast food restau- rants such as McDonald’s have had to deal with unexplainably poor working conditions, dras- tic cuts to employee hours, and even bullying in the workplace – viewed by many as a punishment for joining a union.
“Trade unions, such as mine – Baker’s, Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) – have worked to support these brave workers in standing up and fighting back against McDonalds – a company which has let these workers down one too many times. “Yet, despite all the attempts to change McDonald’s approach and help them become a fairer employer, nothing has been done on their side. Nothing has changed. Empty promises have been made. Yet nothing has been delivered.”
On Monday he said: “This is the second-largest restaurant company in the world that makes $22 billion (£17 billion) reve- nues a year, and yet its workers are living in poverty. They have been the pioneers of zero-hours contracts.” This is the first strike at Mc- Donald’s in Britain but it is part of an international movement, the Fast Food Global workers’ movement. In the United States, McDonald’s has come under pressure as part of the ‘Fight for $15’ campaign.
Communist Party: “People’s Brexit: Youth Deserve a Decent start in Life”
worker | June 18, 2017 | 3:58 pm | class struggle, Communist Party Britain, political struggle, UK, Youth | Comments closed

London Calling: Britain’s Communist Parties react on the outcome of the General Elections
worker | June 10, 2017 | 8:05 pm | Analysis, class struggle, Communist Party Britain, Jeremy Corbyn, political struggle, UK | Comments closed

Saturday, June 10, 2017

London Calling: Britain’s Communist Parties react on the outcome of the General Elections

Note: In this blog we are highly critical about Jeremy Corbyn, who we regard as a political representative of social democracy. Mr. Corbyn and his politics have nothing to do with marxism-leninism; on the contrary, we view Corbyn’s leadership and the Labour Party in general as a bourgeois political power which, like the Tories, aims to manage the capitalist system. However, despite any disagreements and with full respect to their choice, we present the reactions of the British Communist Parties on the outcome of the recent elections. 

Communist Party General Secretary Robert Griffiths issued the following statement at 7.50 am, June 9th:

“Twelve million people have voted for a left-wing Labour manifesto and a majority of electors have rejected austerity policies. The Tories have no mandate for five months of public spending cuts, never mind another five years. In raising Labour’s share of the poll by 10 percentage points to almost match the Tories, enthusing huge numbers of young people, Jeremy Corbyn and his leadership have been vindicated. So, too, has the emphasis placed by the Communist Party on the role of mass struggle and class politics in raising people’s class consciousness, confidence and political understanding. This will help bring further advances for Labour in the new election that will be necessary in the very near future, once Theresa May resigns”.

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The following article, under the title “Get Ready For The Next Election” appears in the front page of the New Worker.

By Daphne Liddle.

THE ELECTION results are in; we have a hung parliament and Theresa May’s big gamble has turned into a fiasco for the Tories. The Tories remain the largest party in Parliament but they no longer have an overall majority.

May has refused to resign but has cobbled together an instant coalition with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and is going to attempt to govern on. But this government will be anything but ‘strong and stable’ — it will be very weak and its potential to do more damage through more cuts and privatisations is now severely curtailed. The DUP is very much opposed to the Tories’ austerity policies.

The right-wing press is savaging May’s reckless gamble with the electorate and her poor performance during the campaign. They have been particularly scathing about her cuts to police and security services during her term as Home Secretary, in the light of the recent terror attacks.

Senior Tories know their government is weak and vulnerable, and there will almost certainly have to be another election before the end of the year. And given her poor performance they will not want her leading them into that election campaign.

Meanwhile Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell have both said that Labour is prepared to form a minority government immediately without any formal coalition but just by presenting items from their manifesto and let the other parties support or not on a case by case basis — a principled position. And they are ready and willing to take up the Brexit negotiations.

Corbyn and McDonnell are prepared to talk to European leaders — an advance on the ‘poke-‘em-in-the-eye-and-run’ stance of the Tory negotiators. The Labour leaders may seem audacious right now because they have fewer seats than the Tories, but with the Tories at war with each other and the Brexit negotiations due to begin in just 10 days Labour’s offer may become a lifeline. Audacity is good.

Corbyn has called on May to resign now, he said: “The Prime Minister called this election because she wanted a mandate. Well the mandate she’s got is lost Conservative seats, lost votes, lost support and lost confidence. “I would have thought that’s enough to go, actually, and make way for a government that will be truly representative of all of the people of this country.”

Shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry said: “Obviously we’re disappointed if we’re not able to form a majority government.” But she added: “For us to have come from such a long way back, supposedly, to be in a position where we could form the next government is an extraordinary performance on behalf of the Labour Party and shows what we can do when we unite.”

Green Party co-leader Caroline Lucas said: “Any Green MPs elected tonight will do all they can to keep the Tories from Number 10, and back a Labour-led government on a case by case basis.”

Labour now is more united than it has been for a long time. Corbyn has proved he is very electable and far more in touch with the values of ordinary working class people in Britain than the careerist right-wing New Labourites who were so desperately trying to bring him down a year ago. Some of them are now acknowledging their mistakes. This does not mean that in a new general election campaign Corbyn would not come under renewed slander and misrepresentation.

It has been strange to see the usual TV pundits, including Alistair Campbell and Piers Morgan expressing, their astonishment — and, for the moment, respect — at Corbyn’s success. It just shows how out of touch they are with the public mood.They have been convinced the only issue at the general election has been Brexit. But for the majority of the working class, saving the NHS, low wages, ending austerity, the housing crisis, benefit sanctions — especially on the long-term sick and disabled — these are the issues that count and would be the same in or out of Europe.

These are the issues and concerns that unite workers, old and young, male and female, black and white, in our day-to-day struggle for survival. If Brexit had been a big issue for the voters then the Liberal Democrat vote would have been a lot bigger because that was the only party standing against Brexit.

Our class has won an advance — the Tories are in retreat but they are not yet defeated. But there is little doubt that the opportunity to complete that defeat will arise soon and we must be ready. But morale is high now so it will be easier.

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[To be added soon] IN DEFENSE OF COMMUNISM ©.

Αναρτήθηκε από In Defense of Communism

British Elections: Dear comrades, be aware of social democracy bearing gifts

Sunday, June 4, 2017

British Elections: Dear comrades, be aware of social democracy bearing gifts


On Saturday 8th June, the working people of Britain will be called to choose between two versions of bourgeois management: The Conservative Party of Prime Minister Theresa May or the Labour Party of Jeremy Corbyn? Despite their existing individual differences regarding the mix of policies, both parties serve the capitalist system. They are both thoroughly bourgeois parties, fully committed to the goal of promoting the profits of the capitalists.
What is at stake for Britain’s bourgeois class on the June 8th elections is the following: The terms upon which Brexit will take place, so that the interests of the British monopolies will be served in the best possible way. In any case, either with the Conservatives or the Labour Party in the government, the country’s bourgeoisie will manage to safeguard her own interests.
The working class of Britain have tasted both the two bitter choices of the bourgeois political system. The communists of Britain- the real communists, not the various opportunist charlatans- have enough experience of the role that the Labour Party has played in the country’s political history. They certainly know how social democracy disguises herself behind radical rhetoric and empty promises in order to get the votes of the workers and the popular strata. The new leadership of the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn is no exception.

Mr. Corbyn, who poses as a “radical” and a “socialist”, is nothing but a political representative of social democracy. Like Tsipras in Greece, he uses radical left rhetoric (including socialist slogans) in order to foster illusions within the working class that another, supposedly “humane”, capitalism is possible. This is a very well known strategy of social democracy that always leads to the weakening of the class-based labor movement and the disillusionment of the working class.
Like SYRIZA in Greece, Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party consists the left “reserve force” of capitalism. Despite their different backgrounds, SYRIZA and the Labour Party foster illusions among the people that there can be a better form of management of the exploitative capitalist system, despite the dominance of the monopolies. This is what social democracy does: exploits the pain and agony of the people by offering an illusionary “radicalism” within the “walls” of the system, inside the imperialist alliance of the European Union.
Britain’s working class can draw valuable lessons and conclusions from the case of SYRIZA in Greece. The experience of the 2 years of SYRIZA’s governance demonstrates that it did not want to nor was it able to prepare the people for a confrontation against the austerity memorandums and the monopolies precisely because it had no orientation for resistance and conflict. On the contrary, SYRIZA deceived the people that it could pave the way for pro-people changes inside the predatory alliance of the EU. The developments consist a very clear expression of the failure of the so-called “governmental left” and of the theory that the EU can change its monopolist and anti-people character.
The communists, the marxists-leninists in Britain must not entrap themselves in the thought that says “let’s support Corbyn in order to oust the Tories from the government”. The major problem is not the manager of the system, but the system itself. Neither May nor Corbyn- or any other bourgeois political leader- can offer actual solutions to the problems of the working class, because these problems are rooted in the capitalist way of production.
The only solution for the working people of Britain lies in the creation of a strong, class-based labor movement which will fight for the real alternative to capitalist barbarity- for the socialist perspective and people’s power. The communist parties which are committed to the principles of Marxism-Leninism have the duty to contribute to the creation of a revolutionary strategy, far from trotskyite and opportunist illusions.
With all due respect to our comrades in Britain who ceaselessly fight for a better future, we must say that: Be aware of social democracy bearing gifts. No “left government” will ever satisfy the actual contemporary needs of the working class.
The only change lies towards the creation of a social alliance in a direction that strengthens the antimonopoly-anticapitalist struggle for workers’ power, the construction of a society that does not have profit as its criterion but the satisfaction of the expanding social needs, the socialist society.