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Theory & History

Celebrating the 80th Anniversary of the 1934 Minneapolis Strikes

By Alan Jones and Ty Moore – Socialist Alternative (US section of the Committee for a Workers’ International)  This year marks the 80th anniversary of one of the greatest labor revolts in U.S. history: the strikes of the Minneapolis Teamsters ...

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Militant anniversary: 50 years of socialism and workers’ struggle

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Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party general secretary When we started publishing Militant, the Socialist’s predecessor, in October 1964, few of our political opponents expected that we would not only continue publication for 50 years, but become an important factor in subsequent ...

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Socialism and the national question today.

From Socialism Today No.181, September 2014 by Peter Taaffe, General Secretary of Socialist Party (England and Wales), CWI International Secretariat The bloody conflict in Ukraine, alongside the slaughter of the Palestinian people in Gaza, has brought the issue of the ‘national question’ ...

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World War 1: 100 years since the great slaughter

Tony Saunois, article originally published in special WWI edition of Socialism Today, magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) The first world war began 100 years ago, unleashing slaughter on an unprecedented scale. This anniversary has featured ...

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Book Review: Capital in the Twenty-First Century – by Thomas Piketty

Hannah Sell, Socialist Party England and Wales The poorest fifth of Britain’s households are among the most economically deprived in Western Europe with living standards on a par with Slovenia and the Czech Republic. Meanwhile, the richest 1% in the ...

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China 1989: 25 years since the mass democracy movement

China’s dictatorship is haunted by the prospect of a new mass revolt Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info June 4th marks the 25th anniversary of the bloody massacre in Beijing that ended the mass student-led democracy movement which came close to toppling the ...

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Peter Hadden – an inspiring life for socialism

Niall Mulholland This obituary was written following the death of Peter Hadden on May 5th 2010. Peter Hadden was the Northern secretary of the Irish section of the Committee for a Workers International (CWI), the Socialist Party, when he sadly died ...

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40th anniversary of the founding of the Committee for a Workers’ International

Socialistworld.net Socialist Party Scotland is affiliated to the worldwide socialist organisation the Committee for a Workers’ International. To mark the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Committee for a Workers’ International on April 21st 1974 we are publishing here three ...

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The Poll Tax Rebellion

Tommy Sheridan and Ronnie Stevenson at press conference in Saughton Prison

 “Ye cannae beat her son, she’s faced doon Galtieri and beat the miners. She’s the iron lady”
 
This was a common response at the early anti-poll tax meetings organised in housing schemes across Scotland in 1988.

 

 

A battered and bruised working class had witnessed a rampant and brutal Prime Minister, in the shape of Margaret Thatcher, cruelly and callously despatch troops to recapture the tiny Falklands Islands and sink ships in retreat from the battle in 1982 and tool up the ‘polis’ in paramilitary gear and tactics to crush the aspirations of miners in 1984. Their only crime was a desire to defend their jobs and communities for future generations. 

 

by Tommy Sheridan, Chair of the Scottish and All Britain Anti-Poll Tax Federation

 

With less than 40% of the popular vote a deeply divided Britain returned her to office for a record third term in office at the 1987 general election.  Her victories over the Argentinean conscripts and the proud National Union of Mineworkers emboldened her to implement even more assaults on the welfare state, trade union rights and the very concept of ‘society’.  ‘There’s no such thing’ she declared at a Royal Geographical dinner to the applause of the rich and powerful throughout the land who welcomed her determination to destroy socialism, human solidarity and the collectivist spirit which renders a society worthy of the description.

This was the political background to the mighty anti-poll tax struggle.

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