Thursday, 4 July 2013

Unite, Democracy and Falkirk

“Reading this information about the Falkirk I can't help but wonder why if Unite was not trying to do something 'underhand' they are so angry at having been 'rumbled'. I love trade unionism at its best, but this doesn't appear to be its most shining hour.

I believe trade unions need to first and foremost look after the workplace issues of their membership. That is first and foremost what they pay there membership for, and optional political levy is a small part of this.

Whilst I admire thoroughly the passions of the trade union movement, and have always supported Labour in part because of the fantastic way political successes occur from sources generally perceived to be most unlikely, we do need to have an understanding of what is achievable with the resources we have. I am not convinced by some of the posts in this forum that this is always the case with admirably passionate members.

We live in a democracy, which if we cherish we need to understand individuals have a vote, not a mass movement with political ambition. Lets influence elections fairly, democratically, and impress on the Labour movement, the country and the world that trade unionist can be the most adequate, representative candidates, genuinely passionate about a progressive movement which can generate ideas that can responsibly be put into action.”

Unite isn’t angry at being ‘rumbled’ to use your indelicate phrase. Unite is angry that the party of the workers, the party of labour has so distanced itself from its core voters. We’re angry that we can barely distinguish Labour policy from that viciously imposed upon us by this ConDem crew. We’re angry at such a lack of policy imagination that forces Labour to cravenly announce that they will blithely follow ConDem social security measures if they come to power in 2015.

And we’re furious at Labour’s participation in the auctioning off of our NHS, and its passivity in countering what is obviously the ConDem’s plan to completely privatise the delivery of medical care in this country in as short a time span as possible.

Oh, and we’re angry that Labour doesn’t have a scintilla of the imagination possessed by Atlee’s post war government, who with a debt over 300% greater than the current deficit, still managed to create the NHS and build a welfare state.

Yes, we’re fucking angry, not at being ‘rumbled’ but because this shower that claim to represent working people are little better than the scum who are currently presiding over the corpse of our welfare state; and complicit in the impoverishing of hundreds of thousands of people.

Kirsty, democracy is but a word that describes various forms of corruption. From its earliest days in Ancient Greece democracy only served around 10% of the population of, say, Athens. The other 90% were slaves, women, children and ‘free’ citizens without the status to form part of the democracy.

So, yes we live in a democracy; and just as in ancient Greece, it is a democracy for the few. It is a club for the rich and powerful.

While we elect governments into office; the reality is that the worlds major business interests actually determine the real policy and running of the country. Don’t believe me. Look at Greece, Spain, Ireland and Portugal. Take a look at some of those states in Central America, Christ look at Mexico! Democracy as some kind of egalitarian force for the good of the people is but a myth in these places as it is in the UK.

So Kirsty, you don’t think that trade unions have any place in politics, in shaping and influencing industrial, economic or social policy. Do you realise that your unstinting faith in the democratic process means that in fact you, hopefully unwillingly, support the right of big business to dictate how countries are run; because that is the reality.

Trade union involvement in politics is merely an attempt to create some kind of equilibrium between the neo-libs drive to drive down workers’ wages and Ts&Cs, using the false premise of austerity cuts coupled with rampant deregulation of industry and commerce, and the workers striving to earn a decent living and keep the social fabric of protection so hard fought for over decades.

Finally, you seem to have been lulled into the belief that this country is somehow short of resources. No, it isn’t. The greatest resource a country has is its people. Yet Cameron and his band of Yahoos ignore this and allow millions to languish out of work, while doing absolutely nothing about the hundreds of thousands of people who are unwillingly under-employed.

While the wealth of this country is so unevenly distributed, working people will always be at the mercy of the whim of mega-rich men. The super rich, of whom some sit in the government’s cabinet, can play their ideological games; they have enough wealth to sit out the hard times knowing that what follows will reap greater benefits.

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