The Trade Union Movement, New Labour, and Working-Class Politics: a debate

Submitted by AWL on 16 October, 2007 - 12:19 Author: John Bloxam and Sean Matgamna

THE TRADE UNION MOVEMENT, NEW LABOUR, AND WORKING-CLASS REPRESENTATION: Class, union and party. By John Bloxam and Sean Matgamna. April 2004.

Download all as pdf

INTRODUCTION
PART I: TROTSKY ON CLASS, UNION AND PARTY
PART II: WHAT DO MARXISTS DO IN THE LABOUR MOVEMENT?
PART III: TROTSKY AND ANTI-LABOUR CANDIDATES IN THE 1930s
PART IV: THE BASIC ISSUES IN DISPUTE
PART V: METHODS, MODELS, MYSTIFICATION
PART VII: POLITICS AND TRADE UNIONISM ARE NOT THE SAME THING
PART VIII: MARXISM AND SYNDICALISM
PART IX: THE FBU, THE RMT AND AWL
PART X: AWL AND “THE SECTS”
APPENDICES
***
PART I: TROTSKY ON CLASS, UNION AND PARTY
PART II: WHAT DO MARXISTS DO IN THE LABOUR MOVEMENT?
PART III: TROTSKY AND ANTI-LABOUR CANDIDATES IN THE 1930s
1. Independent Labour Party candidates?
2. For Trotsky the norm is that socialists contest elections
3. J & S cling to outmoded ‘norms’
4. Revolutionary Marxist or trade unionist point of view?
5. The discipline of working class organisations?
6. Yes, we need concrete analysis!
PART IV: THE BASIC ISSUES IN DISPUTE
7. No change in class character of the bourgeois workers’ Labour Party?
8. And what is the ‘class character’ of the trade unions?
9. General truths don’t necessarily answer specific problems
10. The politics of abracadabra!
11. A neo-Liberal bourgeois workers’ party?
12. A deformed and degenerate bourgeois workers’ party?
13. Subjectivist bluster is not Marxist realism
14. Are all defeats reversible?
PART V: METHODS, MODELS, MYSTIFICATION
15. A wish-list is not a Marxist perspective
16. ‘Prospects’ are not the same thing as Marxist perspective
17. If only my aunt had wheels
18. Marxism is know-nothing empiricism wrapped in mysticism?
19. The method of the MIGs in the Falklands war
20. Elephant or sheep?
PART VI: MARXISTS, MILITANTS AND WORKING CLASS SOCIALISM
21. Can the pseudo-left politically hijack the unions?
22. Has the class political content of the Labour Party changed?
23. Champion the passive mass and misguided militants?
24. Workers’ democracy
25. Workers and the socialist somebody else
26. Minority movements
27. Do bureaucrats reflect the rank & file?
28. Conservative upholders of the status quo
29. We must learn to walk on two legs
PART VII: POLITICS AND TRADE UNIONISM ARE NOT THE SAME THING
30. Collapsing politics into trade unionism
31. Conflating the unions and the Labour Party
32. Trade union control of MPs?
33. When have ‘the unions’ controlled the MPs?
34. Workers’ control and democratic accountability
PART VIII: MARXISM AND SYNDICALISM
35. Syndicalism
36. Three fronts to the class struggle and what that means here
37. The limits of trade unionism
38. Bureaucracy and rank and file movements
39. We are not guardians of the trade union status quo
40. Hopeless contradictions
41. The logic of class struggle
42. Can we combine the two things?
43. Campaign for the trade union leaders to fight
44. Do we tell workers the truth?
45. Trotsky and the degenerate Comintern
46. This or another trade union movement?
47. Syndicalism or soviets?
PART IX: THE FBU, THE RMT AND AWL
48. Should the FBU have stood candidates?
49. The RMT and affiliation
50. Rail workers as Labour candidates
51. Fight tomorrow: manana militancy
52. We must combine the two policies!
53. But we do not oppose Crow from the right!
54. George Galloway, the Socialist Alliance and Plaid Cymru
55. Galloway, the labour movement and political hopelessness
56. “No confidence”, but no challenge either?
PART X: AWL AND “THE SECTS”
57. “The sects” and prolier than thou philistinism
58. Swampophobia
59. Misrepresenting AWL: who “starts from the sects”?
60. “A unified mass of politically directed money”
61. “Economism”?
APPENDICES
1: A workers voice in politics?
2: The case for revolutionary realism
3: Solidarity editorial, August 2002
4: “Organise the awkward squad”, Solidarity 11/10/02
5: The Labour Party in perspective
6: A workers’ government
7: Class, union and party: a summary

Add new comment

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.