Before I go to bed, here’s another plug for my piece on Open Democracy – Unions, why not harness the power of the media? It’s got everything, a bit of syndicalist history, a look ahead to J30, slagging off Labour as well as the Condems and a call to arms to the media to improve their communications to the public. Enjoy!
Just over a quarter of all British workers are in a trade union. Up to three-quarters of a million of them will be out on strike this coming Thursday, 30 June (J30).
That leaves millions of workers not coming out, many of whom might be wondering why public sector workers are striking over the kind of pensions that no longer exist in the private sector.
I finished my Masters course last month and am now working on my dissertation – “An anarchist analysis of power” based primarily on the work of Emma Goldman and Rudolf Rocker. More on that later in the year when I have the thing written!
The now annual fight between the X-Factor winner and people with taste for the Christmas No.1 spot in the UK charts was something of a damp squib last year. Following the first failed mobilisation in 2008 (the battle of the Hallelujahs) and the glorious RATM victory in 2009, the uncoordinated multiple attempts last year failed badly.
A few months ago, I wrote a comment piece for the Guardian’s website outlining an alternative plan for Royal Mail. Instead of privatising it or keeping in its current hierarchical nationalised form, I argued that it should be put into true public ownership with the workers in control.
I’ve given a couple of talks to student occupations recently and I’ve reused a line John McDonnell used at an NUJ meeting recently. The trade union movement has been on its knees, the students are showing us how to stand up. They are an inspiration.
Many trade unionists have said similar things – in official statements like the NUJ National Executive did – or in person at events or meetings. But what are we seeing on the ground?
I got the train down to Brighton today to show solidarity with striking colleagues at the Argus who are fighting plans to move their subbing operation to Southampton.
After a quick diversion to pick up a box of Krispy Kreme doughnuts for the strikers, I hopped in a cab and headed to the Argus offices.