Socialist Worker


Issue No. 2390

David Cameron's latest insult on Scottish independence

David Cameron latest speech on Scottish independence is an insult.

Why did he speak in London not Scotland? He knows that he and his Tory millionaire friends are hated here and if he comes he will be chased away.

He is afraid and so he should be.

Why should we listen to Cameron? He offers nothing except more war, more cuts and more misery.

He appealed for people in England and Wales to tell Scottish people to remain in Britain.

But all of us fighting in Scotland against austerity and the Tories’ attacks are linked with people struggling across Britain. Cameron has nothing to offer working class people wherever they live.

Socialists in Scotland fighting for independence want to show that we have to fight against what the Tories are doing and we can make a difference now. 

We have just beaten the Tories’ bedroom tax in Scotland by brilliant campaigning. 

We forced the Scottish National Party (SNP) to shift on it. They just kept telling us nothing could be done because of Westminster and that the only option was to vote yes for independence.

The SNP need to stop telling people to vote for independence but then saying nothing will really change. We need to unite the fight for independence to grassroots campaigns because we are fighting for real change for ordinary people.

Now Labour has said it will repeal the bedroom tax. This is only because of what so many people have done across Scotland, England and Wales. 

We are going to keep up the fight and we’ll be taking it to the Tories when they have their party conference in Scotland on Saturday 15 March. 

We’re going to be protesting outside. Tell Cameron we’ll see him there!

Angela McCormickGlasgow

Remember injustice of Christopher Alder's death

The Justice for Christopher Alder campaign will commemorate 16 years since his death in custody on Saturday 5 April. This is 16 years of injustice.

An inquest verdict said he was “unlawfully killed” at Queens Gardens Police Station in Hull. His death was an injustice.

The destruction of vital evidence was an injustice.

The failure of the legal system to convict any police officer was an injustice.

The response of the police and justice system to the family’s quest for truth—including surveillance during the inquest—was an injustice.

The burial of Grace Kamara in place of Christopher was a truly shocking injustice.

Hull is going to be city of culture in 2017. Right now it is still the city of cover-up.

Join us at 1pm on 5 April outside the combined court building on Lowgate in Hull to mark the anniversary.


Janet AlderHull

Glasgow care workers blame the council

Your article on our dispute—as care workers employed by Glasgow City Council—has given a wee boost to the members (Socialist Worker, 18 January). 

However it omits a few things that provide a crucial backdrop to the action being taken.

The “bosses” it refers to are acting under the political instruction of the Labour majority in the city.

 This Labour council has taken a lead from Ineos bosses at Grangemouth. It is using the Con-Dem anti-union laws in sending 45-day redundancy notice letters to members. 

It is the same council that, in a dispute late last year, threatened to sack all staff involved and serve an interdict (injunction) on the Glasgow Unison branch. 

These are some of the reasons why our Unison branch supports disaffiliation from the Labour Party.

 This is why the idea of the union movement building a new political formation is well received by our members.

Ian LeechGlasgow Unison Social Work Convenor

Back jobs at the checkouts

Next time you use a supermarket’s self service checkout, spare a thought for the person who may have lost their job so you can gain 10-15 minutes when you shop. 

Shops using self-service checkouts are losing almost £1.7 billion a year through shoplifting, according to a recent report. 

I am not surprised. I absolutely hate these checkouts.

I hope this loss will prove to companies that it does not always make profits increase when you replace people with machines. 

I hope for the return of more people-operated checkouts. And they should introduce more modern speedy tills that incorporate the packing of your purchases, a system that some countries have had for years.

Zerine TataWest London

First World War 'cranks'

First World War conscientious objectors were all “cranks” according to Jeremy Paxman in his BBC show Britain’s Great War. 

The war had to be fought, Paxman said, or Europe would have become a German colony. 

In his next breath he told us about the Easter Rising in Britain’s oldest colony, Ireland. 

And shh… don’t mention the rest of the British Empire or the alliance with Russia’s Tsar.

Pete SmithSwindon

Hammering the vulnerable

As a pensioner I was horrified to get an email saying my Freedom Pass may be stopped. I rang 0845 275 7074 and was told I was not affected. 

I asked, “What about those who are?” Some Freedom Pass users have learning difficulties or are frail or ill. 

She said it was not her fault and I should blame the councils. All the big parties seem to be out to hammer the old, sick, vulnerable and all members of our class.

Carol FosterWest London

A Holocaust event at work

I was pleased when over 30 people came to the Holocaust Memorial Day event at my work hosted by my Unison branch.

Branch member Phil gave a talk straight from the heart, following his participation in the Unite Against Fascism trip to Auschwitz. 

We emphasised the importance of the Nick Griffin Must Go campaign and some members took leaflets away. 

Mike KillianManchester

Class only for 5,000 years

Sue Caldwell says class divisions emerged “tens of thousands of years ago” (Socialist Worker, 8 February).

In fact the first class societies only developed about 5,000 years ago. Until then our ancestors lived in societies in which equality and cooperation were the norm. 

Phil WebsterLancashire

  • This error was added in editing. Apologies to Sue and our readers. 

War drama was scathing

Eric Purvis (Letters, 8 February) is right to recommend The Monocled Mutineer. 

William Allison and John Fairley wrote a magnificent history of Percy Toplis and revolt in the First World War British army.

But Eric is unfair to Alan Bleasdale’s 1986 TV dramatisation. It was scathing about the war and thoroughly outraged the right wing media.

Harry FarrWest Yorkshire

Click here to subscribe to our daily morning email newsletter 'Breakfast in red'

Article information

Tue 11 Feb 2014, 16:32 GMT
Issue No. 2390
Share this article

Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.