Solidarity 413, 10th August 2016

Brazil: behind the Olympics

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 14:02

Martin Thomas

On the day of the Olympic opening ceremony, 5 August, a demonstration against interim president Michael Temer closed off a main street in Rio de Janeiro.

With banners from the CUT union federation, the Workers' Party (PT, which governed Brazil from 2002 until the "impeachment" of president Dilma Rousseff on 12 May 2016), the left parties PSOL and PSTU, and from Brazil's two Communist Parties, PCB and PCdoB, the 15,000 demonstrators demanded "Temer Out" and condemned Temer, installed after the "impeachment", as a "putschist".

The Olympic organisers set the background music and sound effects

Industrial news in brief

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 13:50

Ollie Moore and Gemma Short

Members of the RMT union on Southern Rail have struck again, this time for five days, as they continue their battle to defend the role of the guard. Southern, which is owned by Govia Thameslink Railway, a train company which operates other services, including Gatwick Express, wants to de-skill the guard's role, meaning the safety-critical on-board tasks would be carried out by the driver only.

Unions say that this would hit passenger safety. Prior to the strike, the RMT wrote to Southern offering to suspend the action in exchange for a commitment from the company that current competency and

Reinstate Brighton District Labour Party!

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 13:23

Brighton and Hove District Labour Party was suspended in July after Corbyn-supporting officers were elected at its AGM. Mark Sandell, the newly-elected Chair, describes what happened.

Since Corbyn was first elected in 2015 our local party, which has a rather peculiar structure across three constituencies, has grown from 2,000 members to 6,000.

In Brighton we have a Labour Council which makes cuts and a Labour MP in Hove, Peter Kyle, who is very vocally anti-Corbyn. We were pretty sure that most of the 4,000 new members were on our side. Our issue was how to reach all these new people.


When a class-struggle socialist stood for Labour

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 13:08

Jill Mountford, Momentum Steering Committee, personal capacity

Jill Mountford, Momentum national Steering Committee member and campaigner in Wallasey in 1987, wrote this introduction to Workers’ Liberty’s reprint of the pamphlet How to fight elections.

For a while it seemed that the front person for the anti-Corbyn challenge would be Angela Eagle, Labour MP for Wallasey, near Liverpool, since 1992. That makes perfect sense. Angela Eagle’s career in politics is inseparable from, and would have been impossible without, the Labour right’s drive to marginalise the left not through political debate but suppressing party and labour movement democracy.

She was

The life and films of Ken Loach

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 12:58

Luke Hardy

People think they know what to expect from a Ken Loach type of film. It’s about working class struggle, collectively or as individuals. It’s political. It uses non-professional actors, alongside professional ones. It will be naturalistic and eschew studio filming or flashy effects. The welcome BBC documentary ‘Versus: The Life and Films of Ken Loach’ reminds us there is more to Loach.

Loach is now in his late 70s and making films has taken much struggle; at times it looked like he would never get to make another movie, documentary or TV drama. The documentary tells Loach’s story through

Connolly and the Irish labour movement

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 12:50

Michael Johnson

Part ten of Michael Johnson’s series on the life and politics of James Connolly. The rest of the series can be found here.

The issue of the need for an independent Irish labour movement and an Irish Labour Party was a source of conflict with members of the Independent Labour Party (ILP) in Belfast, whose leading light was William Walker. Walker, a long-time Belfast labour activist and former member of the British Labour Party’s executive, advocated the further integration of labour bodies in Ireland with the British labour movement, a view he understood to represent “internationalism”.


Towards a broad-based left party?

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 12:40

Traven Serge

“Opportunities for the left have been created which never existed before.”

US leftists, broadly defined, agree with the above statement by Eric Lee (Solidarity 410). But that is where agreement ends. The social-democratic and Stalinist left, the identarian left, the non-profit left, as well as most of the labour left are united in supporting Hillary Clinton as the only way to stop Donald Trump. However, in my view, and that of most revolutionary socialists, this is the best opportunity that we have had since at least 1968, if not 1936, to lay foundations for launching a genuinely independent

Why Sanders and his supporters are now backing Clinton

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 12:29

Eric Lee

Over the course of the last year, millions of Americans voted for Bernie Sanders, a democratic socialist candidate who offered a programme of radical change. According to public opinion polls, nearly all of them are now going to cast their votes for Hillary Clinton.

They will do so even though she remains a widely disliked and untrusted candidate who is often seen as being the candidate of the “establishment”. Some polls put the number of former Sanders supporters now backing Clinton as high as 90%. Most expect the numbers to be even higher as the November election draws closer. Clinton has

Back Corbyn, transform Labour, fight the Tories

Published on: Wed, 10/08/2016 - 12:20


The tide has changed! The Labour right is being pressed back. The initiative is now with our movement to get Jeremy Corbyn re-elected as Labour leader.

Since the beginning of August Corbyn has held mass rallies across the country. Thousands heard Corbyn and Diane Abbot speak at College Green, Bristol. Many thousands more have heard Corbyn in Hull, Leeds, Liverpool, Swansea, Merthyr, Brighton and at Heartlands in Cornwall. Corbyn is being greeted by supporters with enormous enthusiasm. Queues to get into rallies have wound their way round city blocks. Tickets for rallies in huge venues have

This website uses cookies, you can find out more and set your preferences here.
By continuing to use this website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.