Solidarity 502, 10 April 2019

Schools: the most vulnerable lose out


Ralph Higgins

By the government’s own reckoning, over 2,000 pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities are not getting access to necessary resources and equipment because of funding cuts.

Since 2015 £5.4 billion has been cut from school budgets in England. The most vulnerable have been hit hardest.

Brexit: new public vote should decide



No deal Brexit? Theresa May’s Brexit formula, three times rejected by Parliament but somehow squeezed through on a fourth attempt?

May’s Brexit formula, tweaked to promise a permanent customs union with the EU, and — to Labour’s shame! - pushed through with Labour front-bench support?

A long Brexit delay — ending with pretty much the same options?

Any of those options, but conditional on a new referendum to accept the favoured option or go for Remain?

The Tory back benches rebelling, forcing May out of office, precipitating an early general election?

Behind Labour’s Brexit and antisemitism problems


Dan Katz

Jeremy Corbyn’s victory as Labour leader in 2015 promised the possibility of a left Labour Party which would in government renationalise rail, gas and electricity, restore union rights and tax the rich. In the aftermath of the 2008 crisis and years of Tory austerity, that looked attractive to many tens of thousands of people who had never been active on the left before. Labour’s membership surged and the membership was optimistic. The Party’s right wing was on the back foot.

To fix climate change, fight capitalism!


Mike Zubrowski

George Monbiot (The Guardian, Wednesday 3 April) makes the case for large scale reforesting and re-wilding as the “Natural Climate Solutions” to the problem of how to remove excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

He recognises that this removal can be no “substitute for the rapid and comprehensive decarbonisation of our economies.” But his approach to bringing about this large scale re-wilding falls short is what of needed, and fails to link it to these wider needed transitions.

"Inability to recognise antisemitism"

Look at the sheer weight of the examples of antisemitic attitudes, Facebook posts, and behaviour across so many different levels of the party and so many different parts of the country.

There are hundreds and hundreds of examples. Anyone who says there is no evidence either hasn't looked or is deliberately closing their eyes.

Full Brexit: "Transforming Britain"


George Hoare, Peter Ramsay, Lee Jones, Anshu Srivastava and Danny Nicol

George Hoare, Peter Ramsay, Lee Jones, Anshu Srivastava and Danny Nicol respond to criticisms of the London Full Brexit event from some on the left. We reply to this article here.

A bridge to the far right


Steve Michaels and Sacha Ismail

This is a reply to a Full Brexit article.

The “Full Brexit” project describes itself as a network of “activists, academics, journalists and policy experts, all on the broad political left” dedicated to “seizing the historic opportunity Brexit offers for restoring popular sovereignty, repairing democracy, and renewing our economy”.

Stalinists for WTO rules?


Jim Denham

On Saturday 6 April, I sat in a room full of activists from the giant union Unite, and heard the union’s assistant general secretary Steve Turner talking about Brexit. He was clear on one thing: a no deal Brexit on WTO terms would be a disaster for jobs in manufacturing. Turner emphasised the chaos that no-deal would cause to the automotive sector, which is dependent upon frictionless trade across Europe.

The Bolsheviks: mistakes and limits


Martin Thomas

Barry Finger's review (Solidarity 497) of In Defence of Bolshevism quotes approvingly Max Shachtman's statement, in Shachtman's 1943 article on "The Mistakes of the Bolsheviks", that "we must... defend Bolshevism".

In its last sentence, though, it declares: "The Bolsheviks themselves – Lenin, Trotsky, Bukharin — nevertheless 'took the theoretical lead', in Hal Draper's words, 'in gutting socialism of its organic enrootment in the mass of the people' paving the 'juridical' framework for the counter-revolution in class power."

Migrants: here to stay, here to vote


Rosalind Robson

As we go to press on 9 April, Labour is continuing talks with the government on a Brexit formula.

As the customs union which Labour is asking for will not fly with many Tories, the talks may break down. But they are proceeding on the basis of Tory-Labour agreement on ending free movement between the EU and the UK.

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