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Morning Star Hails “much-needed intervention” as Communist Party of Britain Stands Against Labour in Local Elections.

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Candidates Against Labour, “for a sovereign, united and internationalist working class.

The Morning Star, independent of the Communist Party of Britain, and owned by the co-op, leads with this Editorial Britain’s communists and the May elections: a much-needed intervention.

For many years British Communists have stood ‘witness candidates’ in elections. This year the Communist Party of Britain is running in local elections.

They are engaged in a battle across the country. Who are our enemies, who are our friends? They ask.

TOMORROW sees the launch of the Communist manifesto — the Communist Party (CP) of Britain’s manifesto for the Scottish, Welsh and English local elections, that is.

Revolutionary Left.

The party is standing its biggest slate of candidates since the 1980s after six years in which it didn’t stand — calling, as did much of the revolutionary left, for maximum support for Labour during the Jeremy Corbyn years.

Much of the labour movement remains sceptical of voting left of Labour. Despite the party’s lurch right under Keir Starmer, there is a widespread belief that a non-Labour vote only helps the Tories in England and Wales, and the SNP in Scotland.

Here is the Communist Party of Britain standing up to the right:

Labour Movement Welcome.

Labour’s poor projections nationally — with polls placing it about 10 points behind the Conservatives — can encourage this caution. Yet there are good reasons the renewal of communist election campaigning should be welcomed across the movement.

The British government’s handling of coronavirus has been catastrophic. We have one of the highest death tolls anywhere in the world and the deepest recession in Europe. Tens of thousands of lives could have been saved, hundreds of thousands would not have lost their jobs, had Britain adopted the zero-Covid strategies implemented by countries as diverse as China and New Zealand.

Follow the successful models of Cuba and Venezuela!

As countries which have successfully kept deaths and disruption to a minimum have proved, Covid-19 did not need to provoke a prolonged crisis. The worst-affected countries have been the heartlands of neoliberal capitalism — western Europe and the United States in particular. In Latin America, the contrast between the performance of socialist-led countries such as Cuba (40 deaths per million) and Venezuela (62) and neoliberal ones like Ecuador (995), Colombia (1,308) and Brazil (1,673) has been especially dramatic (figures from statista.com).

Covid has put the status quo to the test and found it wanting. There are plenty of people who recognise that. The point is regularly made from trade-union platforms and at online meetings.

But the pandemic struck Britain just as Labour was transitioning from a socialist leadership to a restorationist (??? Note to Subs, translate) one that has rowed back on the Corbyn movement’s searing critique of economic inequality and social injustice while stressing its support for (fawning on) “business as usual.”

With a handful of honourable exceptions, this has deprived institutional politics of voices drawing out the lessons of the pandemic to challenge the capitalist system itself.

Public Debate.

Yet we sorely need a public debate on an alternative economic and political strategy: one that understands the role of the market in creating the jobs crisis, the housing crisis, the climate crisis — and outlines real solutions to these, which must involve a big expansion of public ownership and economic planning.

Labour is not raising these issues. In a campaign in which it seems determined to compete with Priti Patel’s increasingly authoritarian Tories for the “law and order” vote, and in which it has even been caught distributing race-baiting anti-Gypsy and Traveller leaflets, the importance of an intervention from the left is paramount.

Learn from China’s Example of Racial and Political Tolerance!

Standing Against Labour Will Help Left Unity.

Far from undermining left unity, the left within Labour will be strengthened by the promotion of socialist solutions to the crisis and by leftward pressure on Labour candidates across Britain.

But besides that, we know that Labour’s long assumption that working-class voters have nowhere to go has been exploded by events — for years now in Scotland, more recently elsewhere. Refusing to challenge Labour from the left has not upheld its vote: it has simply meant disillusionment and anger at a party that no longer seems to represent ordinary people has been expressed by not voting at all or by voting for parties to its right.

The left has lost a lot of ground across Britain over the past year. We cannot sit out the first significant Britain-wide platform for political debate since the pandemic struck. The Communist Party’s election campaign will be a significant contribution to the revival of a militant and combative socialist movement.

What serious spotters want to know is if there are any contests between Communist candidates and the Socialist and Trade Union Coalition (TUSC), and the Monster Raving Loony Party.

Written by Andrew Coates

April 13, 2021 at 11:07 am

Prince Phillip: Mixed Responses to 8 Days of National Mourning.

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Prince Philip wears full collection of SEVENTEEN medals | Daily Mail Online

Not a Real, but an Ersatz Patriot says Morning Star.

Partisans de la ligne de la Tendance! Respond to the passing of Prince Phillip with dignity.

Quiet Mourning, and Condolences to the Family should be the hallmark.

Alas, this well meaning advice does not seem to have been universally followed.

This is what is happening (Telegraph).

“Britain has entered eight days of mourning for the Duke of Edinburgh during which flags will be flown at half mast, TV presenters will wear black and Parliament will pass no new laws.”

“MPs are expected to wear black armbands while they are at work, and armbands are likely to be worn at sporting events this weekend. A-two minute silence will be observed at the Grand National at Aintree on Saturday.”

Parliament will scale back its work in a similar way to periods of “purdah” before elections. No new laws will be passed, no Government announcements will be made and no ministers will give interviews or tweet about policy unless it is specifically to give public health guidance.”

“Major TV channels responded to the Duke’s death by cancelling planned programmes and showing tributes instead. Presenters and newsreaders were told to wear black or dark clothes and black ties. The official Royal family website was replaced with a single memorial page to the Duke, while the Prince of Wales’s website was suspended.”

This is excessive, as Cde Osler has remarked, Christians only have four days to mourn the death of Christ – a somewhat more important passing for millions of people.

No wonder that this was a reaction.

Within six hours of Prince Philip’s death being announced the BBC had received so many complaints about its wall-to-wall coverage of the news that it opened a dedicated complaints form on its website.

The BBC curtailed dozens of broadcasts on Friday, taking the nation’s most popular television and radio channels off air and reduced dozens of other broadcasts on stations across the country, in order to provide uninterrupted coverage of tributes to the Queen’s husband.

This lot have no idea of how to react either:

Socialist Worker: Queen mourns as another racist bites the dust.

Prince Philip looked like the living dead whenever he left hospital during recent health scares. On Friday, he was just dead.

The racist royal finally snuffed it after 99 years of privilege, triggering “Operation Forth Bridge”, the British government’s plans for the funeral. In line with his wishes for “minimal fuss”, there will only be eight days of official mourning for the queen’s husband.

The anti-Labour and national Sovereigntist Morning Star attacked the Duke of Edinburgh for being a real patriot.

They began by making a side-swipe at the Labour Party.

“The diktat from the Labour leadership that the party’s election campaign be immediately suspended until further notice will doubtless be obeyed.”

The paper, independent of the Communist Party of Britain and owned by the Co-op will no doubt carry reports of Communist Campaigning in local elections in the coming days.

To the Daily the Royal Family are not genuine patriots.

“Philip himself — second cousin to his betrothed and the princely son of Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark and Princess Alice of Battenberg — personified the nonsensical conceits of an ersatz patriotism in which the closely related royal families of European nation states and Russia shared class interests and family links while the peoples over whom they ruled were dragooned into war and inter-imperialist conflict.”

From the Red-Brown Front there’s more appreciation:

Frank Ferudi writes in Spiked,

Even though I am not a royalist, I always admired Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. He was often criticised in the media for his many so-called gaffes. However, his formidable track record of saying unfashionable things in public can be taken as a positive testimony to his refusal to follow the rules of media training.

It’s all about me:

I first encountered Prince Philip accidently in Nakuru, Kenya in 1972. I was travelling around doing interviews for my PhD thesis on the Mau Mau revolt. He was running so fast on the street that his posse of bodyguards could barely keep up. Occasionally he would stop to exchange a few words with some locals and then move on. at struck me was the effortless way he conducted himself and the affectionate reaction he got from the people he talked with

Even though I am not a royalist, I always admired Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. He was often criticised in the media for his many so-called gaffes. However, his formidable track record of saying unfashionable things in public can be taken as a positive testimony to his refusal to follow the rules of media training.

Unlike most of the other royals, Philip was often ‘off-message’. In a world in which royalty comes wrapped in the accoutrements of celebrity culture, Philip stood out as a genuine individual who was reluctant to express himself through a script written by public-relations advisers.

I first encountered Prince Philip accidently in Nakuru, Kenya in 1972. I was travelling around doing interviews for my PhD thesis on the Mau Mau revolt. He was running so fast on the street that his posse of bodyguards could barely keep up. Occasionally he would stop to exchange a few words with some locals and then move on. What struck me was the effortless way he conducted himself and the affectionate reaction he got from the people he talked with.

The next time I met Prince Philip was three decades later at the Royal Geographical Society in London

The former leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party concludes, “Yet despite all the small-minded and sneering criticism he faced from the new cultural establishment, Philip had a good run. In decades to come, he will be remembered as someone who turned out to be a very human prince.”

We await the response of Baroness Claire Fox, if her ladyship can surmount her grief and write a tribute.

Written by Andrew Coates

April 10, 2021 at 11:27 am

Galloway goes NIP: call to break up Scotland into Unionist enclaves and Nationalist fiefdoms.

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More Borders Galloway: Independence Leads to Break up of Scotland.

Borders are back in fashion…..on the left. A decade ago one of France’s best known believers in the Gauche républicaine Régis Debray wrote  Éloge des frontières , In Praise of Frontiers. Full of guff about the moral and intellectual necessity of borders, and the way they help flourish diversity, it marked the return of Giuseppe Mazzini’s 19th century call for a world of “free, independent, republican nations.” 

Another left wing writer, the German Wolfgang Streeck has become interested in the progressive potential of national frontiers. As Jerome Roos explains, “In recent years, Streeck has increasingly been tempted to fill this void with a reassertion of national borders as the last-remaining expression of ‘organised’ political control against the ‘destabilising’ external forces impinging upon it – irrespective of whether these are flows of ‘hot money’ or actual people fleeing poverty and war.[101] These calls for stricter border control in turn hinge on a rather one-dimensional and underdeveloped theorisation of the impact of globalisation on the international border regime (From the Demise of Social Democracy to the ‘End of Capitalism’: The Intellectual Trajectory of Wolfgang Streeck).

After the Brexit vote Debray wrote  L’Europe fantôme (2019). Imagining a “post-European era”, the end of “mythe galvanisant, cet ersatz de messianisme”, the “plaything of elites”‘an “empty monument” under the Shadow of Uncle Sam…The real Europe is plural, because to exist we need differences, to separate ourselves off.

Streeck, less a prophet, lost his honour in his own country and this one by active involvement in the Full Brexit Red-Brown Front between Brexit Party supporters, Blue Labour, national sovereigntists and the Communist Party of Britain.

From these prominent contributors to the New Left Review blog, Sidecar, to the political confusionism of the post-Corbyn left. Pro-border left wingers who back the Scottish National Party and Scottish independence have seen others join them in recent months. There is the restoration of the Heptarchy for Northern Independence Party, and now, the pro-Unionist George Galloway and fervent Brexiteer….

Galloway puts forward ‘bizarre’ plan to partition Scotland if country votes for independence Telegraph.

 in a suggestion described as “bizarre” by opponents, he said ‘regions’ should be able to secede from an independent Scotland, if the country was to vote for separation, and instead remain a devolved part of the UK.  He cited Edinburgh, Aberdeenshire, Orkney, and Dumfries and Galloway as parts of Scotland that may demand to stay British rather than be part of an independent state. (Thanks David)

The Daily Record,

The former MP, who is heading the All for Unity, said places like Shetland, the south of Scotland, Aberdeen and Edinburgh would not want to become “part of a separate Scottish state dominated by the Central Belt”.

Galloway said: “I think the demand for it would become unstoppable. starting in Orkney and Shetland. I don’t believe that they will allow themselves to be dragged into an independent Scottish state.”

“I know in Dumfries and Galloway where the great majority, more than two thirds oppose separatism, the demand to remain in Britain would probably become the settled will of the people there.”

“It may be the Edinburgh the financial sector, Aberdeenshire with its with its fishing with its farming with its oil related activities, might very well begin to demand in a way that might become unstoppable.”

He added: “It’s not my view, I wouldn’t wish it to happen, but it would be an extraordinary irony if the break up of Britain gave birth to forces which then began to break up Scotland. The country would be eating itself.”

The saga continues,

Written by Andrew Coates

April 8, 2021 at 11:52 am