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Paul Mason, “wildly vacillating petit bourgeois intellectual” – Morning Star.

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Morning Star on Paul Mason, “self-described student Trotskyist turned ‘radical social democrat’ specialises in providing ‘left’ cover for right-wing politics.”

Paul Mason: which side are you on?

Nick Wright (Responsible for the Communist Party’s media work)

Today Paul Mason faces a new attack from the Morning Star.

The TV pundit would undoubtedly do best on the subject of which he has become the foremost practitioner: “constructing left-wing arguments for right-wing policies.”

Cde Wright calls the first evidence for the prosecution,

First up would be his defence of Britain’s nuclear weapons. For Mason, opposition to Trident is nothing more than the perennial obsession of “the old, Stalinist wing of the movement”.

Well-spotted.

Here is UNITE’s policy on Trident: “Unite union vote to keep Trident at Labour’s party conference.” (2015)

From the standpoint of dialectical materialism,  the world outlook of the Marxist-Leninist party, Wright  outlines the continuous motion and change in Paul Mason’s politics,

Next up is Mason’s Corbynista credentials. To meet his Marxist pretensions we must understand that his support for Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party is no static mechanical thing. He sees its dialectically, a living thing subject to constant change, even revision.

..

Today Mason is less certain. It seems our Jeremy is losing touch with the people and reality, cocooned by advisers with their pet obsessions such as Brexit and the need to maintain a dialogue with the millions of Labour voters who voted for Britain to leave the European Union.

Yet three years ago Mason saw the big problem differently. “Our strategic problem,” he wrote, “is to reconnect not only with the Labour core voters who backed Brexit but also with those who have drifted to Ukip.”

This shilly-shallying and wobbling has led Mason to fall into serious error after error.

Prosecutor  Wright, from the Boycott Labour in the European Elections CPB, notes,

The starting point for Mason’s latest assault on the direction hitherto taken by the Labour Party is the results of the election to the European Parliament.

In a typically mechanical way, extracted from a wider context, he takes the results of an election constructed solely around Brexit and one moreover that failed to attract the attention of substantially more than half the electorate as the key indicator of how people might vote in a general election.

That half of the electorate who responded to the CPB’s Boycott shout,

Quite right Comrade Wright!

Talking of Brexit the central  Mason message is entirely reasonable, shared by the majority of the left and the Labour Party.

That is barely the half of if.

Mason has made this typically liquidationist wavering assertion,

Labour’s narrative has to be built around resistance to Brexit as a project of the racist and xenophobic right, and a story of communities revived by hope and solidarity.

With forensic skill Wright points out the error,

These are the desperate ideas of a man who has lost sight of the essential relationship between real-life working-class politics and is reaching for mechanical and abstract categories that reflect his ever changing subjectivity rather than the world as it is.

Pointing an accusing finger the CPB top theorist says,

 It is a profitless exercise to speculate on why Mason, and the claque of pundits who specialise in shaping political opinion on the left, are so erratic, why they swing from one analysis to another.

No doubt there is an unreconstructed Stalinist ideologue somewhere plundering Lenin’s collected works to construct a compelling indictment of Mason as a wildly vacillating petit bourgeois intellectual.

In the streets and in the pubs of Durham Mason’s narrative will be interpolated in even more direct and compelling language.

Ay, Haddaway, man!

Here is the Morning Star’s Editorial on Brexit,  from the same issue as the above keynote article.

Labour is committed to negotiating its own Brexit deal but its new pledge to call for a second referendum in the event of a Tory Brexit without a deal or one on unacceptable terms — and to campaign for Remain in such a vote — is one reflection of the reality that the Tories are in government and that, short of an election, Labour’s leverage is limited.

In other words, in their spin, Labour supports Brexit, with all the jobs and rights and care-bears that the Morning Star can push into its vision of Lexit.

They add this barely concealed threat,

..many MPs, drawn from a wide spectrum of political opinion consider continued retreat from Labour conference policy to respect the referendum result a real threat to the party’s chances of winning the next election.

Labour can win an election if it ups its game

In other words, there has been “retreat” from the irrelevant dream of a People’s Brexit.

Not to mention the CPB’s own position of a Hard Brexit on WTO terms (Communist Party calls for Brexit on World Trade Organisation terms.)

After Cde Wright’s contribution, we await the Morning Star’s version of this CPB document: Briefing note on allegations that China is holding millions of Uighurs in concentration camps

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Morning Star Publishes “A second referendum would be Labour’s route to Syrizafication” .

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Résultat de recherche d'images pour "boycott european elections Communists"

Communist Party of Britain’s Morning Star Attacks Labour’s John McDonnell.

The first wails and groans from the Lexiters are appearing.

Unable, yet, to attack Corbyn, the Boycott Labour in the European Elections CPB organ, the Morning Star has just tweeted this:

From the Red-Brown Front (CPB, Labour Leave, Blue Labour and the Brexit Party) of European Lefy, 

Peter Ramsay is a Professor of Law at the London School of Economics. He supports The Full Brexit network.

A second referendum would be Labour’s route to Syrizafication

JOHN McDONNELL said on Sunday that Labour had to “get on with” changing its Brexit policy to one of backing a second referendum. This had to be done “sooner rather than later,” he told the BBC. ..the drift of the Labour Party towards an official position that supports a second referendum is bad news for democracy. It may also prove to be an electoral disaster for the Labour Party. It will certainly make Tony Blair’s political divorce of the party from Labour’s working-class traditions irreversible.

….

In any case, whatever the likely electoral outcomes, the crucial point is that supporting a second referendum is the wrong position. As many in the Labour leadership know their programme cannot be implemented within the EU. Moreover working-class and poorer voters were much more likely than middle-class voters to vote for Brexit, and for good reason. They voted against a political system that had ignored their interests for far too long. For Labour to go over officially to the side of elite resistance to Brexit will send a clear message that the demands of working-class voters are less important than those of the middle class or of big business.

McDonnell chose to push publicly for a more militantly pro-EU stance on Sunday, the very same day that Greece’s Syriza government got turfed out of office by the Greek electorate. Syriza too abandoned its early radical promises and spent years doing the EU’s dirty work instead. For Corbyn’s Labour Party, backing the second referendum opens the road to Syrizafication.

The Morning Star also tweets this attack on the Greek left from one of George Galloway”s former key supporters.

 

 

Solidarity with the Hong Kong Protests!

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Image result for hong kong protests Parliament flag

Protesters demand democratic rights: Solidarity! 

 

Police firing tear gas have evicted protesters who stormed and vandalised Hong Kong’s parliament.

Activists had occupied the Legislative Council (LegCo) building for hours after breaking away from a protest on the anniversary of Hong Kong’s transfer of sovereignty to China from Britain.

After midnight (16:00 GMT), hundreds of police secured the building following a warning to protesters to clear it.

BBC

The 2019 Hong Kong anti-extradition bill protests are a series of ongoing demonstrations in Hong Kong and other cities around the world against the Fugitive Offenders and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Legislation (Amendment) Bill 2019 proposed by the Hong Kong government.

Background:

Hong Kong extradition: How radical youth forced the government’s hand

 Helier Cheung

In just one week Hong Kong has witnessed two of its largest ever protests, as well its most violent protest in decades. At the forefront of these demonstrations are young people, many barely out of their teens. Why did they get involved – and how did they manage to force the government’s hand?

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No longer certain the system will protect them, they are modifying their protest techniques and learning the art of sophisticated dissent.

Every single protester I interviewed who had taken part in Wednesday’s unauthorised protests asked me to protect their identities – fearing arrest.

“We kept face masks on at all times during the protest, and afterwards we tried to delete our records on our iPhones and Google Maps,” says Dan, an 18-year-old student who helped protesters build a barricade with fences.

Some have taken to buying paper train tickets, rather than using their prepaid travel cards – on the basis this could make it harder for the authorities to trace their whereabouts.

Meanwhile, many have become cautious about what they say on public social media – and are only willing to communicate on secure apps with self-destruct functions, such as Telegram.

A new kind of Hong Kong activism emerges as protesters mobilize without any leaders

Alice Su, Los Angeles Times.

An outsider might assume there must be some administrative genius at the core, directing the tens of thousands of protesters who surrounded the legislative building to prevent discussion of an extradition bill that — if approved — would send people to China at its request.

But Hong Kong activism has evolved.

Five years after the pro-democracy Umbrella Movement of 2014, in which high-profile individuals led mass occupation of the city center, only to be arrested or exiled in the aftermath, Hong Kong’s youth have decentralized their protests. They are impeccably organized, yet no one is in charge.

This is a new model of Hong Kong protests,” said Baggio Leung, 32, convener of Youngspiration, a local political group formed after the 2014 Umbrella Movement. Leung was elected to the legislative council in 2016, but disqualified for deliberately mispronouncing “China” in his swearing-in oath.

Several other pro-democratic legislators have also been disqualified from serving in the council, some imprisoned along with civil society and student leaders after having participated in the Umbrella Movement.

This time around, protesters are deliberately leaderless, Leung said.

“It looks quite organized and well-disciplined. But I’m quite sure you cannot find anyone managing the whole thing,” Leung said, adding that the protesters’ logistical practices — bringing supplies, setting up medical stations, rapid mass communication — were “in-built” from the last few years of practice.

“It’s just like a machine or a self-learning AI that can run by themselves,” he said.

Many groups are participating in a growing wave of grassroots dissent. Unions, student associations, churches and activist organizations like Demosisto, a nonviolent resistance group led by Joshua Wong, the now-imprisoned face of the Umbrella Movement, have all called on members to participate in marches, rallies, and other forms of direct action.

See this comprehensive Wikipedia page: 2019 Hong Kong anti-extradition bill protests
Further resources:

In French (Europe Solidaire Sans Frontières):

 

Chaos à Hongkong après la mise à sac du Parlement

Mobilisations du 1er juillet à Hong Kong

A Hongkong, la désobéissance civile s’installe dans la durée

Solidarity with those fighting for democracy against the totalitarian state capitalists!

The obstacles they face are enormous:

A new burst of Hong Kong protests offers a stunning challenge to Beijing, and brings a swirl of conspiracy theories

Joseph Yu-shek Cheng

 

State sovereignty, national security and the combat of advocacy for independence have been justifications for political crackdown, and the rampage in the legislative council building has provided an excuse for arrests and prosecutions of protesters.

As the Chinese leadership has chosen to support Carrie Lam, and is concerned about the morale of the local police force, a crackdown in the name of law and order can now be justified.

Chinese leaders have, in my view, been keen to learn the lessons of the fall of the Berlin Wall, the colour revolutions in eastern Europe and the Arab Spring. And one of the key lessons has been crushing the source of trouble in the very beginning.

There is zero appetite to yield to a mass movement, and there is an ingrained instinct to minimise any wider effects from the Hong Kong demonstrations. The Hong Kong people’s desire to hold on to the principles of democracy is not likely to meet a conciliatory response from Beijing.

Hong Kong people understand that the situation is grim. Emigration sometimes feels like the only sensible option. But most of them have not abandoned hope. A moment of angry vandalism might be a dent to the image of a benign “umbrella” revolution, but their political struggle should still take succour from the sympathy and support of the international community.

Written by Andrew Coates

July 2, 2019 at 12:58 pm

Boycott Labour Morning Star Calls for Labour Purge to Back Brexit as Campaign Against Internationalists Grows.

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“Full Brexit now “. We need to expel saboteurs” Tom Flanagan  in Morning Star.

In an “opinion”  piece in  the organ of the Boycott Labour Communist Party of Britain, the Morning Star, Tom Flanagan  called today for a purge of the party to create a pro-Brexit organisation.

Clear them out: Labour must become the party of Brexit

Leave won the EU elections – to win a general election Labour must rid itself of Remain saboteurs, argues TOM FLANAGAN

The apathy amongst some of our members is caused by the softness of the Corbyn project on dealing with our enemies within the movement. The knives are already out once again, the olive branch hasn’t worked yet again.

We need to expel saboteurs.

Alastair Campbell’s departure is brilliant start — now we must clear out the other liberals so we can get on with building socialism.

He continues,

Full Brexit now. Socialist governments in London and Edinburgh tomorrow.

Tom Flanagan is press and communications officer for Scottish Young Labour.

Labour has no Scottish MEPs and barely any MPs in Scotland.

As far as I know Edinburgh and London are the homes of the loathed, “metropolitan elite”, or whatever that fucking gibberish means.

This article might seen best classed with the Workers Revolutionary Party call for a General Strike  to introduce a socialist Brexit.

And yet..

Let is ignore the eructations of Bastani and come to something serious:

This appears in the New Statesman today,

An attack on Jeremy Corbyn’s advisors is an attack on Jeremy Corbyn

“Unite the Union disagrees with Paul Mason on Labour’s Brexit position.

It’s hard to take issue with some of the points made by Howard Beckett  in this article.”

Mason’s famous piece indeed combines support for a strong Remain position with ill-thought out asides about the need to “fight personal insecurity, crime, drugs, antisocial behaviour and organised crime as enthusiastically as it fights racism”. The first words could have come from Marine Le Pen, the latter from some of the red-brown sovereigntists anxious to cover up their own working class identity politics.

No doubt the claim that “a strong national security policy is somehow “imperialist”. It needs to forget scrapping Trident”  is as irrelevant as it is annoyingly off beam.

Some will, perhaps those in well-paid labour movement jobs themselves, find the rudeness about Seumas Milne, director of strategy, and Karie Murphy, and poor old thin skinned Ian Lavery MP, the party chair, sympathise with their wounded, delicate, .souls.

But this is the core of Mason’s argument,

Corbyn’s mistake was not simply triangulation between the values of leave and remain voters. It was an attempt at triangulation between two wings of Corbynism: between the demands of an economic nationalist current from the old left, and the internationalist and progressive politics embedded in Labour’s new urban heartlands. I understand his loyalty to the former group, they stuck with him through every attack. But their politics are a throwback, and the voters rejected them last night.

Being seen to deliver Brexit loses votes from progressive voters and wins none back from more socially conservative ones. That’s exactly what a leaked internal poll by Hope Not Hate and the TSSA union told Corbyn back in February. It was ignored.

Corbynism is now in crisis: the only way forward is to oppose Brexit

 

Mason is right, empirically and politically right, to point that not adopting this stand, equivocating, beating around the bush,  for ever, is not the way to electoral success.

 

We need a Remain and Reform agenda.

 

Those of us on the Another Europe is Possible left want to achieve that goal, shared by the majority of Labour members, to prevail by debate and democratic party vote.

We do not need the assistant general secretary for politics and legal affairs at Unite the Union to say, of Mason,

Today is clearly a moment for flinching cowards and sneering traitors.

Come off it!

 

Written by Andrew Coates

May 29, 2019 at 4:51 pm

Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist-Leninist) joins the Red-Brown Front.

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The harder the Brexit, the more the imperialists will be set back.

Galloway, Farage and the Brexit party

British workers are set to keep demanding Brexit at the upcoming EU elections.

There’s a parallel in the ‘unpardonable to stand with Farage’ line with that taken by many commentators and ‘historians’ who condemned the USSR for ‘standing with Hitler’ or, conversely, ‘standing with Churchill’ during WW2. In fact, the USSR stood with neither; she stood with the workers of the USSR and of all countries. But the tactical alliances she made enabled the Soviet Union to vanquish her mighty imperial enemies.

Brexit, as the CPGB-ML has emphasised since the beginning of the debate leading up to the referendum (in which 17.4 million voted to leave the EU, as opposed to 16.1 million who voted to remain), hurts European, British and US imperialism alike.

The harder the Brexit, the more the imperialists will be set back. Yes, some privileged workers will find that their privileges come under threat from this outcome, but that’s the way the winds of capitalist economic crisis are blowing in any case.

The CPGB (M-L) does not hesitate to cite the mouthpiece of the social-imperialists, RT…against ‘imperialism’.

This farrago continues:

Farage, like that other disrupter US president Donald Trump, may not realise that Brexit is against the broader interests of imperialism, but most of the other imperialists do.

What we are seeing on a global scale, decried as ‘populism’ by imperialist representatives and as a ‘massive shift to the right’ by the imperialist ‘left’ (social democrats, Trotskyites and revisionists), is, in fact, massive disillusionment with the effects of imperialist economic crisis and war, and consequently the established politics of imperialism.

It is the beginnings of a revolutionary temper among the masses, and only our weakness organisationally prevents communists from drawing mass support from this righteous anger and becoming a major force in British political life. This can change, but only if we adopt the correct attitude towards the working class’s desertion of the bourgeois parties: we must embrace it!

The CPGB-ML have thus decided to side with the vehicle of the most reactionary fraction of finance capital (the Brexit Party) against the working class and socialist movement.

Their modestly titled “tactical alliance” with national populists, dreamers of the British Empire, and self-serving free-market nationalists, excldues them from the left and all progressive forces.

It is to be hoped that their presence at any left or trade union event will be met with an appropriate response.

Here is their banner:

A useful history of red-brown alliances is given in this article.

An Investigation Into Red-Brown Alliances: Third Positionism, Russia, Ukraine, Syria, And The Western Left  (Anonymous)

This is particularly relevant.

The start of the Occupation of the Ruhr by France and Belgium in 1923, meant to force Germany to continue paying war reparations, however threatened this cooperation and resulted in rising nationalism in Germany, especially among the working class, and the Comintern subsequently pushed for cooperation between the Communists and the ultra-nationalists. In June 1923 Radek gave a speech to the Enlarged Executive Committee of the Comintern praising Leo Schlageter, a far-right Freikorps member who together with his unit joined the NSDAP in 1921 and engaged in sabotage against the French forces occupying the Ruhr before being executed by them in May 1923. This was a followed by a period of cooperation between the KPD and the Nazis against the Versailles Treaty during which KPD member Ruth Fischer infamously attacked “Jewish capital” in an attempt to appeal to Nazi students, and the KPD’s newspaper reprinted articles by members of the German far-right such as Arthur Moeller van den Bruck even as its rank and file members were fighting against fascists on the streets.

Radek notably declared,

I believe that the great majority of the nationalist-minded masses belong not to the camp of the capitalists but to the camp of the workers. We want to find, and we shall find, the path to these masses. We shall do all in our power to make men like Schlageter, who are prepared to go to their deaths for a common cause, not wanderers into the void, but wanderers into a better future for the whole of mankind; that they should not spill their hot, unselfish blood for the profit of the coal and iron barons, but in the cause of the great toiling German people, which is a member of the family of peoples fighting for their emancipation.

Known as the ‘Schlageter’ line this is ultimately the basis, a common interest between nationalists and national Bolsheviks, which is the ground of the CPGB (M-L)’s position.

It is not to be expected to have any real effect.

Except….by spreading political confusion it will undoubtedly contribute to the growth of the far-right.

Written by Andrew Coates

May 8, 2019 at 11:14 am

“Labour Heartlands” discuss Communist Party of Britain Plan to Boycott Labour in European Elections.

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People's Boycott

‘Labour Heartlands’ not Hearty enough to back Labour  without reservations in Euro-Elections.

They have just published this:

Why some on the Left are calling for a ‘People’s Boycott’ of the EU elections

For the first time in its 99 year history, the Communist Party (CP) has called on members and supporters to campaign for a boycott of an election in Britain, in this case, the EU election on 23 May.

 

Labour Heartlands will be conducting a number of articles expressing the Left position on the EU elections the first of these takes a look at the CPB position who are running a  Boycott on the EU elections.

Writing exclusively for Labour Heartlands Phil Katz, Eastern district secretary explains the CPB position and why the Boycott.

The ‘exclusive’ (one imagines the competition for a piece from that quarter…) article does not mention that the CPB, which claims the mantle of the old Communist Party of Great Britain, stood against Labour in a crank list which got well under 0,5 % of the vote in the last European elections….

This is one of the key points:

 A plan has been rolled out to explain the decision to allies and leading trades unionists. Members and supporters are being supplied – via a ‘download day’ – with up-to-the minute analysis, campaign materials including speakers notes, films, posters, leaflets, stickers, Facebook and Twitter cards – part of a social media strategy.  The focus however, is on holding face to face discussion meetings whenever and wherever possible.

Every Communist Party branch is being asked to approach local Labour movement allies, especially Labour Party members to work together to hold meetings where those who voted Leave, Remain or not at all, are encouraged to enter into dialogue. These forces will be the hub of the movement to leave the EU and galvanise support in Brexit-voting areas for a change of government.

In other words to break the Labour vote and to get people to back a small ‘People’s Brexit’ campaign that nobody has heard about…

And this takes some bleeding cheek  even from the red nationalists:

Readers of this article are likely to share that aim. Our view is that a mass boycott and stay-away, similar to the tactic used in South Africa when the apartheid government forced local government structures on an unwilling population, will be a massive restatement of the democratic decision to Leave.

 

We urge you to boycott and say No to the EU elections and Yes to a general election.

 

The disclaimer at the end is to say the least ambiguous.

Editors note: Labour Heartlands have not taken an official position on the EU elections at this point.

Real heartlands that lot, they are not sure about voting Labour….

Now,  were I suspicious this all sounds like a typical far-left  manoeuvre.

Written by Andrew Coates

April 28, 2019 at 2:10 pm

As SWP cracks up Morning Star goes Total Tonto.

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Lessons of History Sadly ignored, says Morning Star top writer. 

The wisdom of Lenin’s What is to be Done?

Morning Star.

“With dissatisfaction and anger growing, with confrontation intensifying, and with more and more institutions and authority discredited, the need for effective responses grows, says ZOLTAN ZIGEDY.”

The cold war and the demonisation of communism further prodded the US and much of the academic and student western European left to distance itself from Leninism.

The ABC phenomenon — Anything But Communism — became deeply embedded in the “radicalism” of the late 20th century.

A “new” left — purposefully new in order to dissociate from Leninism and cold war ostracisation — sought new forms of radicalism, new approaches to struggle, new types of organisations.

Ironically, the new left found answers that had already failed in the past, in the kinds of politics toward which Lenin had earlier targeted his ideological weapons. And today’s US and European left reproduces many of the same tendencies.

It has been a common thread weaving through the US left that so-called participatory democracy is the foundation of radical politics and emancipatory or empowering for oppositional movements.

From the new left of the ’60s to the Occupy and Indignados movements, this approach has been foundational. The fetish for procedure has not only overshadowed establishing a common programme, but often blocked the achievement of one.

I had no idea that us European leftists actually cared that much, though we like the US left, about, er the US left,

History knows of no serious challenge to capitalism emerging automatically, without the intervention of a revolutionary organisation. Nonetheless, many in the US left deny the necessity or the desirability of a Leninist “organisation of revolutionaries.”

Under his pen name  the Morning Star leader writer,  concludes.

What Is To Be Done? demonstrates the need for a political organisation of ardent, committed revolutionaries, united with a programme to overthrow capitalism.

Since the retreat of communism, Leninism has unfortunately been discarded by many on the left. But the wisdom of Lenin’s pamphlet is needed now more than ever.

And i thought the Posadists were bit strange…

Written by Andrew Coates

January 5, 2019 at 2:06 pm