Solidarity 480, 3 October 2018

Labour needs a critical left wing


Keith Road

More than 12,000 people attended Labour Party conference 2018, with local parties sending noticeably larger delegations then in previous years. There was less of a focus on Corbyn as “a celebrity”, an improvement, and proceedings involved less political grandstanding. But the level of political debate was still, overall, quite low.

Industrial news in brief


Ollie Moore, Sacha Ismail, Gemma Short and Patrick Murphy

Drivers on London Underground’s Piccadilly Line brought the line to a standstill with a discontinuous strike across 26-28 September.  The strike saw different shifts of drivers striking across 26-28 September, with Night Tube drivers striking on Friday 28 September.

“Glasgow Labour has much work to do...”


Ann Field

“Glasgow Labour has much work to do to regain the trust of our communities, and to be given the chance to form an administration again… Over the coming years, Glasgow will face enormous challenges.” That’s what the publicity said for an all-members conference organised last weekend by Glasgow City Council Labour Group.

Canvassers for hire?


Steve Allen

The prolonged debate about “One Member One Vote” (OMOV) within Labour Students flared up again over the summer, as the National Chair removed all mentions of the policy from their social media accounts. It is right to criticise the National Chair for this apparent cover-up, and to criticise their three predecessors who were also elected on platforms to implement OMOV.

The No-Party people


Sean Matgamna

During the 1980s, a lot of people who thought of themselves as Marxists [grew] indifferent or hostile to any project of building a Marxist organisation. This tribe, and it was quite an important component of the Labour left, marched or ambled, in so far as it expressed itself explicitly, under the idea: we will develop the influence of Marxism by promoting left-wing ideas in the existing broad labour movement, trade unions and Labour Party.

Israel-Palestine: ways to reconciliation

Hussein Agha is senior associate member of St. Antony’s College, Oxford, and co-author (with Ahmad Samih Khalidi) of A Framework for a Palestinian National Security Doctrine. He has been involved in Palestinian peace negotiations for three decades. We reprint here with permission from Fathom journal, an extract from an interview with Fathom editor Alan Johnson.

The Israel-Palestine debate

Diary of a delegate

As with many things at Labour conference, the setup for debates is at best strange and at worst actively unhelpful. The session on “International issues and Security” covered discussion on the Brexit motion, a motion on Windrush and a motion that dominated the debate on Israel/Palestine.

Why the Labour right praises McDonnell


Chris Reynolds

The social-democratic worthy Will Hutton, in his heyday the chief advocate that Britain can come good by adopting “Rhenish capitalism” on the German model, is happy about Labour Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell's plan for a bit of worker shareownership, as announced at (but not put for debate to) Labour Party conference.

Hutton's praise is sincere, but double-edged if read by socialists.

Democracy: now dry out the damp squib!


Martin Thomas

Sadly, Luke Akehurst, honcho of the right-wing in the Constituency Labour Parties (CLPs), is right about what happened at Labour Party conference on the Democracy Review.

“The Democracy Review was a total damp squib... All the key decisions around youth, student structures and local government have been postponed for a year”.

Tories scapegoat migrants



Despite being castigated and forced into retreat over the “hostile environment” and the Windrush scandal on immigration the Tories are now, as Brexit looms, preparing to betray EU migrants present and future.

They plan a new White Paper on immigration policy. We don't yet know exact details but we do know for certain that it will put the rights of business first and not human need. There will be restrictions on immigration based on skills and wealth.

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