Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Looking ahead

As we grapple with how to sustain the momentum of the pensions dispute whilst (in local government) anticipating another vicious budget round with massive job losses, it is all too easy to get lost in the detail of the massive economic crisis which is crashing around us. The never-ending round of job losses and reorganisations is enough to drain the most energetic activists.

It's helpful then to step back a little to see the bigger picture, as Robert Griffiths does in today's Morning Star (http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/content/view/full/113056). Whilst I'm not entirely convinced that the General Secretary of the Communist Party of Britain has quite joined all the dots between resistance to austerity in the here and now and the overthrow of capitalism by the working class, that hardly discredits a sound analysis of the (frustratingly) slow but steady progress being made in the trade unions.

(I imagine the "British Road to Socialism" as a winding country lane very little of which is visible ahead as you travel along it).

Griffiths is right to point out that 2011 has seen the slow awakening of our movement to the need to resist, and also to point out that our trade unions - even the TUC - have adopted sensible and progressive economic policies which, if implemented, would begin to turn the tide of attacks upon working people.

Unfortunately, we lack a political party prepared to advocate such policies at present - those Labour politicians prepared unequivocally to back our resistance to austerity are all too few and far between (http://l-r-c.org.uk/press/labour-mps-and-councillors-back-30-november-strike-and-say-we-wont-cross-pi/).

If 2011 has been the year the trade unions woke up, we need 2012 to be the year in which we shift the Labour Party on to our side. This is particularly challenging for those of us having to resist the implementation of cuts by Labour politicians believing that they have no alternative.

Regular readers of this blog, Sid and Doris Blogger, will have appreciated that I haven't written this because I have any particular answer or insight, but just because my journey into work has been prolonged this morning. For now all we can do is build the strength of the union as best we can to resist as many attacks as possible.

Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange

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