:: Wednesday, July 02, 2003 ::

RMT on the move

PolitX notes:

Thankfully there is one Union that has remained awake throughout. The RMT, lead by Bob Crow. He’s angry – very, very angry. It seems that National Rail needs to trim 2,000 jobs from the work force. That figure represents about one seventh, this announcement following hot on the heals of National Rail’s Fat Cat payments that ran just a little under two million.

In what can only be described as a we’re-not-gonna-take-it-anymore, Mr Crow let rip. Firstly branding Tony Bliar and his band of merry men as “war criminals”, the union announced that it would support pretty much anyone who is capable of annoying New Labour. And for good measure it cut New Labour funding to £12,500pa.

Let’s hope more Unions follow suit…

And so say all of us. Blairite bloggers have been stunned and on the defensive, "Crow is a mad communist" they complain, "the RMT will lose influence". Of course the decision was taken by the union as a whole.

And what influence has the trade union movement got for the barrel loads of cash they have given to New Labour? Some limited rights to join a union and a minimum wage pegged way below the European decency threshold. At the same time the draconian Thatcherite anti-union laws remain in place. Privatisation is central to New Labours ethic as is kissing big business' collective arse. The FBU have been treated the same by New Labour as the way the Tories would have treated them. A New Labour minister in Scotland even described striking firefighters as "fascist bastards". He better hope he never leaves the chip pan on.

One of the interesting things is that the RMT have been quite eclectic in their choice of new groups to potentially sponsor, the SSP first and foremost but also the Greens, Plaid Cymru and John Marek the independent Welsh AM. What they all have in common is the fact that they do have electoral credibility.

Sadly missing is any of the English left, notably the Socialist Alliance. Crow told the BBC "In England at the moment, we haven’t an alternative and that’s why we are sticking with New Labour,". The Mirror has this Bobby Law, who represents London Underground, said Labour had betrayed workers. He said: "We are going to have to bang heads together so we have an alternative in England." About time. Whether the English left will respond to this wake up call remains to be seen.

More on this at SSP News

:: Alister | 2:10 pm | save this page to del.icio.us Save This Page | permalink⊕ | |


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