Blogs

Lest We Forget: Workers Stopped Capitalism’s First World War

The 100th anniversary of the Armistice, which we are told put a stop to the first world war, happens to coincide with remembrance Sunday, or Poppy Day. So we’re in for a treat. On top of poppy-wearing – now almost de rigueur – and two minute silences in the most improbable places, there are some smashing events in store. While local volunteers polish up war memorials, craft red poppy memorabilia, there are all sorts of state-sponsored celebrations, to mark the 11th hour of the eleventh day, in November 1918 when “the guns fell silent”.

Southall Waterside Stinks! – Local working class resistance against soil and air pollution

In the media workers are usually portrayed as people who don’t care about ‘the environment’ – we see mining workers defending mining jobs or car workers demonstrating to keep car plants open. We forget that working class people tend to have much less of a choice to ‘act environmentally friendly’ – we lack the financial means to buy electric cars, organic food or hemp-based underwear - and there often is not much of a choice when it comes to jobs and working class communities that have formed around them.

How Pink Tide Failed Brazil

How the failure of the leftist Pink Tide movement lead to the right's victory in Brazil.

Global Warming: Capitalism Threatens the Planet

Capitalism is killing the planet. The answer should be staring every environmentalist in the face: get rid of capitalism!

Radek on the “Defeat” of Brest-Litovsk

With this translation we begin the second volume of our series of translations from the review Kommunist, using the French version published by the Collectif d’édition smolny (www.collectif-smolny.org). As many will know the review Kommunist was the brainchild of the “proletarian communists”, or “left communists” as Lenin dubbed them, inside the Bolshevik Party in the spring of 1918. The original issue around which they were formed was opposition to the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk (March 1918) but as readers of our earlier translations will know they also highlighted their disquiet with certain developments inside Russia.

Is an over-supply of labour depressing wages?

Are trade union bureaucrats correct in saying Marx believed an over-supply of labour depresses wages? We take a look at what Marx called "the absolute general law of capitalist accumulation" to discover if this is true.

Workers of all Identities, Unite!

For the past few years, but particularly in the aftermath of the 2016 US Presidential election, the theme of identity politics has dominated political discourse on both the left and the right. Countless books, articles, blogs and comments have been written on the subject, but we ourselves have dealt with it only in passing.

Legal Aid Cuts: One Law for the Rich and an Increasingly Worse One for Everyone Else

The government is currently carrying out a review of legal aid following a series of cuts that have been implemented over the last few years. There is a growing view that the cuts have gone too far and could be a false economy as well as undermining faith in the legal system. Whilst it is unlikely that the government will put any significant amount of cash back into the system, it will probably at least pay lip service to the importance of legal aid. This article considers some of the issues at stake.

West-London Solidarity Network - Steps towards a local proletarian association - An update

Self-defence against bosses, migration police, racist scumbags and other enemies of the working-class doesn’t fall from the sky. Weekly drop-ins and individual support are first necessary steps - and they can be laborious. If you live in London and want to get involved in our west-London solidarity network or want to set up your own network, please get in touch.

The Imperialist Manoeuvring Behind the Khashoggi Affair

Under the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Saudi’s policy has become more aggressive both against Iranian influence and Turkey’s and it is in this context that the fate of Jamal Khashoggi should be understood.

Report on the 2018 IWW Organising Summit

My notes on the UK IWW's organising summit in Sheffield.

Against Racism and Authoritarianism: the Problem is Capitalism!

“We will chase them out!” Alexander Gauland bawled straight after the entry of the Alternative für Deutschland (Alternative for Germany, AfD) to the Bundestag. It should be clear, at least after the racist riots in Chemnitz and Köthen, that this was no empty threat. The AfD’s rise has lent wings to the entire extreme right and is increasingly being translated into racially-motivated violence on the street.

Ireland and Brexit – Workers Need a Hard Border Against Bosses' Politics!

On 12th October, the Financial Times (FT), described the Brexit situation as an "Unpredictable Muddle". We would not disagree.

Italy’s “Government of Change”: History as Farce

The new populist “government of change” made up of the anti-European Five Star Movement and the racist Lega (The League, formerly the Lega Nord or Northern League) has begun to adopt some of the same empty rhetoric of the past. Their target is not much different from the fascist anti-semitism of the past. Whilst their main guns are today trained at the EU they also point to the nefarious activities of “financiers like Soros”. George Soros is of course the target of the anti-semitic campaign of Orbans in Hungary. According to these “populists” the problem is not capitalism but only some aspects of it.

Not Tesco Finest - Warehouse workers' report

An article for the upcoming issue of WorkersWildWest, a free working class paper from west London

Living the Dream after the Plebiscite and amongst the Alt-Right

The same-sex marriage plebiscite was an amazing victory against conservative forces in Australia. Yet most of the Left treat it as a horrible defeat. What's this all about and what impact does it have on radical politics in Australia? Also we chat about the alt-right in Australia. Living The Dream is an anticapitalist podcast from Brisbane host at The Word From Struggle Street.

Bolsonaro and the Crisis in Brazil

The fall out from the financial collapse of 2007-8 continues. Its latest tremor is in Brazil. The commodities boom before 2007 allowed the Brazilian Workers' Party [PT] to claim that it was redistributing income but in reality it did little. Once the commodity prices fell (and especially that of oil in 2014) the state finances were in a mess. And just about every major political figure from Lula to Temer has been tainted with corruption. Enter Jair Bolsonaro.

Against Pension “Reform" in Russia

Statement about recent pension reform in Russia written by the Krasnoyarsk Marxist Workers’ Group.

The Struggle of the Metro Workers of Granada

The leaflet below was issued by the Emancipation League whose appearance as a nucleus of the communist left we first welcomed in June this year. It demonstrates not only that the bosses are getting worried about rising class militancy (it’s a longtime since we heard the “selfish workers” line) but also that Liga Emancipación aim to have an impact on the wider working class as part of their formation as a nucleus of future world proletarian party. This is only to be welcomed. The brief introduction that follows here is from the Nuevo Curso blog from which this leaflet is translated. - CWO

Two Articles from Kommunist (April 1918)

With the publication of these two articles we are completing our translation of the first issue of Kommunist, the journal of the “proletarian communists” or left communist faction of the Bolshevik Party in the Spring of 1918. We have already published articles by Radek, Bukharin and Ossinsky in our last three issues and all can be found on our website. Here we turn our attention to a final review by Bukharin, and an economic analysis of the state of the Russian Revolution in April 1918 by one of the least well-known of the Kommunist contributors.