attacks on working class

Solidarity with Canadian Posties

Despite the geographical distance between us, the North London Solidarity Federation supports the struggle being waged by our fellow brother and sister workers in the Canadian Postal Service.  We applaud the inspiring wildcats and direct actions that took place in Edmonton.  While we know the next round of strikes will be "official", we hope the militancy and self-organisation witnessed in Edmonton will continue to be an integral part of workers' struggle in the Canada Post.

In London, too, posties are facing job cuts because of incompetent and greedy bosses. Your battles and are ours are interlinked in the global fight against the boss class and their state lackeys.

Report from Solidarity Federation's Workplace Organiser Training

In the face of the media storm over the protest on March 26, it’s important for all of us involved in fighting austerity to take a step back, whether we think the occupations and property destruction were useful or not. Ultimately, whatever their worth, it’s not through riots or occupations that we can defeat austerity. Only by causing economic disruption, and making it more expensive to carry through with the cuts than to make us concessions, will we win. And where we have the most power over the economy is in the workplace. It’s our work that makes up society and if we withdraw it by striking, or take other forms of direct action such as go-slows or work-to-rule’s, we – the working class – can call the shots and stop this attack on our class!

Class war on the streets of London

On March 26th, London saw people assemble to protest and take direct action against the government. Most of the people there were marching quite simply because their jobs, their services, and their livelihoods are under attack. This included those of us in anarchist blocs, though we also argued for a much broader perspective and recognition that capitalism itself was the issue, not just the current "ConDem cuts."

Arriving in London, members of the Liverpool Solidarity Federation headed to Kennington Park. We met up with other SolFed members, as well as members of the Anarchist Federation and other class struggle anarchists to form the Radical Workers Bloc on the South London feeder march.

Disruption in Brent Town Hall

Feb 28th saw about 200 activists and militants gather outside Brent Town Hall to voice their anger at Brent councillors’ imminent decision to cut public spending in the borough even further. Called by the local trades council, the protest began with public speakers discussing the implications of the coming attack -- including the severe cuts to Brent Law Centre, support for the disabled, housing, and the closure of libraries.

The protesters mainly consisted of SWPs, 'old' Labour types, Communist Party members, Green Party activists, and a small number of anarchists. This unfortunately set the tone as criticising Labour for "doing the Tories' bidding" -- however one protester's voice was heard to shout "fuck Labour!" in response.

The paradox of reformism - a call for economic blockades

Neoliberal ideology is a crock of shit and everyone left of Labour knows it. Critics have pointed out its flawed assumptions regarding perfect competition, consumer access to information, human nature and a host of other factors that nowhere apply in the real world. They’ve also pointed out that where neoliberal policies have been applied, the results have often been disastrous and rarely matched the promised outcomes of prosperity for the rich and trickle down for the poor. One famous example was the so-called J-curve model for transitioning the former USSR to Western-style capitalism. The ‘J’, a small downswing in transition followed by a long upswing when neoliberal policies worked their magic, turned into something more resembling an ‘L’, plunging millions into worse poverty than before.

And then there’s the cuts.

Fired up

The Labour leadership have been itching for an opportunity to outdo Thatcher in the union-bashing stakes. Finally, these opportunist chinless wonders have their chance; in the form of the fire-fighters dispute. Their public school background combined with New Labour grooming seems to bring out their innate hostility towards working class organisation.

Politicians attack striking workers

They talk about democracy in Iraq whilst doing their best to stifle it at home.

Politicians from both the main parties attacked the Fire Brigades Union when scheduled industrial action seemed likely to coincide with final preparations for war. The Labour Government revealed it is considering legislation that would make strikes by fire fighters illegal, whilst the Tories denounced the union as friends of Saddam Hussein. In reality, criticising the FBU was an attempt to damage the union.s widespread public support. Such language betrays the contempt in which organised workers are held by the ruling elite. The hate screamed by the state and the press at any group of workers daring to hold its own political views may seem vicious, but it is justified by the logic of war. In war you are either a patriot or a traitor.

Norwich Union Job losses

It was recently announced that the UK's largest insurer Norwich Union (a member of the Aviva Group) is to offshore and centralise it operations, causing 2,500 job losses.

Norwich Union is just one of a number of companies making these changes - others include BT, British Airways and the HSBC bank. Abbey (formally Abbey National) has also announced a further 400 job losses in the UK. It has been predicted that up to 2 million financial sector jobs will be exported form the UK over the next 5 years.