12 January 2002
And they dare to blame the workers
15 December 2001
New Labour is to pour public money into grammar schools in a move that John Major's Tory government would have been proud of. The government's schools minister Stephen Timms made the announcement last Sunday.
01 December 2001
There is one fact that all the spin surrounding chancellor Gordon Brown's pre-budget statement cannot hide. Under New Labour investment in public services in Britain will only just reach the level it was at under John Major's Tory government-and that's after Brown's supposed major boost to public spending.
24 November 2001
Harold Macmillan, the Tory prime minister of the late 1950s and early 1960s, put me off Anthony Trollope. He said that reading the Victorian novelist was his favourite pastime, and that was enough to create a reading block.
03 November 2001
'The thought would turn my stomach. I will not talk to people who murder indiscriminately." That is how then Tory prime minister John Major responded in parliament on 1 November 1993 to suggestions that his government should talk to representatives of the IRA. Similar words about "not conceding to terrorists" came from every British prime minister in the previous two decades of conflict in Northern Ireland. But as Major spoke eight years ago, his government was already in secret discussions with IRA leaders.
08 September 2001
THE AUSTRALIAN government has set new standards for callous treatment of refugees. Its attitude to the 460 desperate refugees rescued by the Norwegian freighter Tampa from their sinking boat on Sunday 26 August was "let them drown". John Howard, the Liberal (Tory) prime minister of Australia, has ignored the refugees' pleas to be allowed to come to Australia.
11 August 2001
ONE OF Spain's longest running industrial disputes has ended in victory for the workers. Telephone engineers celebrated in the centre of Madrid last weekend after their fight forced the country's Tory government to concede most of their demands.
10 March 2001
Exeter, in the south west of England, is the kind of Middle England town so beloved of Tony Blair and New Labour. Labour won the seat from the Tories in 1997, with a swing of nearly 12 percent. Many cheered when Labour's Ben Bradshaw, who is openly gay, beat Tory bigot Adrian Rogers.
03 March 2001
Some 40 protesters picketed a book signing by Tory Ann Widdecombe at Waterstone's bookshop in Nottingham last week. One of the protesters was Pete Radcliff, the prospective Socialist Alliance candidate for Nottingham East.
03 March 2001
The Socialist Alliance launched its general election campaign this week. People across Britain now have the chance to say a resounding no to Tony Blair's pro-market, pro-privatisation policies, and to vote for a socialist alternative.
03 March 2001
Firefighters in Derbyshire are "withdrawing goodwill" with the Labour-controlled county council over a £1 million cut in the budget. A spokesperson for the firefighters' FBU union told Socialist Worker, "Last time we went into dispute with the council they hid behind a Tory government. They cannot do that now. Gordon Brown should spend some of his billions on essential services."
24 February 2001
How could anyone be cynical about New Labour? The party came to power promising to end the stink of sleaze and corruption that enveloped the Tories. Now we see:
24 February 2001
The right wing press heaped praise on Tony Blair last week for his plans to attack comprehensive education. The Sun said, "We take our hat off to the prime minister." It applauded Blair's spokesman Alastair Campbell for labelling comprehensive schools "bog-standard". The Tories boasted that New Labour had copied their policies. The right wing are cheering the end of working class children getting the right to a decent education.
17 February 2001
"Death Of The Comprehensive." So the Daily Mail greeted Blair's plans for education this week. Scrapping the hated 11-plus and introducing comprehensive schools in the 1960s and 1970s led to the biggest ever increase in educational achievement. The system was so successful that even Tory education secretary Margaret Thatcher went along with it.
03 February 2001
New Labour was falling apart last weekend. The leaders of the project that was supposed to have transformed politics for all time were tearing each other apart. New Labour's sleaze is a result of the way it has sold itself to business, put company chiefs at the centre of decision making, and allowed firms to rake in profits from the NHS.
20 January 2001
US President George Bush ushered in the start of the Gulf War ten years ago. As the bombs pounded down on Iraq he made a speech about the dawn of a "New World Order". We have been living with that New World Order ever since. Bush's war lasted 42 days. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis were dead by the end of it. Iraqi society was devastated. The war was backed up by British Tory prime minister John Major and Labour leader Neil Kinnock every inch of the way. We were told that it was necessary and just, because Saddam Hussein, the ruler of Iraq, was an evil tyrant. We were told he was a new Hitler who must be destroyed at all costs.
13 January 2001
William Hague's Tory rabble playing the race card or Tony Blair's New Labour government privatising everything in sight. That is the choice presented to us in this year's general election. But there will be an alternative. Across Britain over 120 socialist candidates are preparing to stand in the election.
06 January 2001
MANY OFFICIAL documents covering 1970 have just been released to the public. They reveal precisely what happens when there is a high level of strikes. Thirty years ago workers' action echoed through the whole of society and dominated government thinking at the highest levels. Almost every cabinet meeting, under both Labour and Tory governments, focused on strikes.
06 January 2001
MICHAEL HESELTINE last week joined Tory leader William Hague's filthy campaign to play the race card in the run-up to the election. The man Tony Blair claims is a "one-nation Tory" launched a vicious attack on asylum seekers. "Let's not mince our language here," he said, claiming that most refugees were "bogus".
05 February 2000
FRANCE SHOWS another face of Europe, how workers can take on bosses and governments, marginalising the far right and the Nazis. Over 10,000 health workers united to march in Paris on Friday of last week. Thousands joined similar protests in other cities around the country. They were demanding increased funding and more staff. More protests were planned this week. Four years ago the Tory government attacked France's welfare provision, including health. This was beaten back, and strikes and protests ensured a left wing coalition government was swept to power.