Hallowe’en Brexit – You Don’t Need To Make It Up

by Colin Fox

So now Brexit is set for October 31st. Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit impasse just runs on, and on, and on.

With the second ‘deadline’, April 12th, for leaving the EU having expired anti-climatically without fanfare, just as March 29th did before it, Britain now faces the farcical prospect of contesting elections to a European Parliament voters opted to Leave three years ago.

Having seen her EU Withdrawal Bill ignominiously dumped three times by the House of Commons, the UK Prime Minister in desperation opted for a tactical volte-face turning abruptly away from trying to persuade her recalcitrant DUP/ERG right wing allies, towards wooing Labour instead.

Photo: Craig Maclean

But the obstacles to an EU deal via this ‘compromise’

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What is BDS and why does it matter?

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement was launched in summer 2005 by a coalition of Palestinian civil society organisations in order to bring international pressure against Israel to end its persistent violations of Palestinian human and national rights.

Modelled on the successful campaign to isolate apartheid South Africa in the 1980s, it has gone on to become a key means by which those internationally who stand in solidarity with the Palestine liberation struggle can weaken Israeli colonialism and Israel’s system of apartheid.

Motions of support for the BDS movement have been passed by an increasing number of trade unions, local authorities, political parties and student unions across the world, including in Scotland and Britain.

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Clarity Needed to Reverse Indy Retreat

by Hugh Cullen

Opinion polls taken since the 2014 Referendum paint a picture of support for a second referendum on independence slowly trickling away. Polls don’t tell the whole story but they correlate with what we are seeing on the ground; formerly active and vibrant Yes groups have either folded, become social gatherings or are dominated by nationalism detached from reality.

Comparing the SNP of late 2014/15, buoyed by 100,000 new members and electoral domination, to today seems like day and night. The Nationalists have paid a huge price for not making the case for Independence at any election since the referendum – and allowing themselves to be chased away from the issue by the Unionists.

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Birmingham Bin Strike: An acid test for Labour

by Richie Venton

In an important victory for all workers fighting austerity, the High Court has ruled (on 20 September) in favour of Unite the union and ordered Birmingham Labour city council to withdraw the compulsory redundancy notices they’d issued to 113 safety critical refuse collection workers.

As part of the legal ruling, the union has agreed to suspend industrial action until a full Court hearing. This is, at the very least, a temporary victory for workers who faced the options of the sack or a £5,000 pay cut within weeks – from a Labour council, yes, a LABOUR council!

The battle of the Birmingham bin workers is an acid test of the readiness of trade union leaders to lead decisive action against the slaughter of jobs,

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A better future won’t come through Westminster

by John McAllion

Scottish Labour’s Campaign for Socialism is Jeremy Corbyn’s and Momentum’s voice in Scotland. Their analysis of their own party’s general election performance is that, by comparison with Labour across the rest of GB, Labour in Scotland “held back the UK effort”, “failed to deliver” and “looked more like Jim Murphy’s Labour Party than Jeremy Corbyn’s.”

Where Labour in England and Wales saw double digit increases in their share of the vote to 41.9 per cent and 48.9 per cent respectively. Labour’s share of the Scottish vote went up by 2.8 per cent to just 27.1 per cent.

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Corbyn, Confusion, Socialism and Independence

by Ken Ferguson

The recent general election which reduced the Tories to a minority government and put UK Labour some fifty seats behind them has caused shock waves across politics not least in the movement for Scottish Independence.

Recent weeks have displayed a range of infighting, name calling, political confusion, bile and in some cases simply personal posturing. This has including attacks on Yes backers who voted Labour, criticism on the topic of who is or isn’t acceptable within the Yes camp and how all this should be reported in the media.

This culminated with a series of columns from various Yes luminaries arguing that the Yes movement is really alive and well and citing –

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Radical class-based demands are at the heart of Indyref2

by Liam McLaughlan

British politics is in period of almost unparalleled self-inflicted chaos and confusion. A zombie Tory-led government – devoid of any credibility – staggers on. They march to the tune of the lambeg and flute of Arlene Foster’s DUP, the empty nothings of Theresa May and the Tory hard Brexit negotiations underway. For the first time since Sept 18th 2014, I’m happy with some of Nicola Sturgeon’s approach to the national question and strategy for delivering a vote for independence.

Yesterday’s pause in proceedings recognises what the SSP made clear; tying Scotland’s quest for self determination to the issue of European Union membership was the wrong issue at the wrong time.

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