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Same Old Answers

On Saturday 3 July, the lunchtime edition of 'Any Questions' on BBC Radio 4, that doyen of the Left Arthur Scargill made a return appearance onto the national stage. In the light of the recent experiences of the Left here and around the world, might he have revised his world outlook? Would the failure of Keynes, the rise of Thatcher and Reagan, the defeat of the miners' strike, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the collapse of the Soviet Union, the rise of New Labour and numerous attempts to get his Socialist Labour Party elected, cause this once colossus of the Left to think a little wider about society?
Arthur's lack of an understanding of our capitalist world was displayed when he called for Mr Bush and Mr Blair to be in the dock with the tyrant Saddam. He imagines that workers could, under his leadership, provide enough pressure to force capitalists in the USA to put their own man, Bush, on trial for dancing to their own tune.
Next, in answer to a question posed on the ex-Sainsbury Boss, Peter Davis' £2m bonus that forced him out, Arthur declared he would, presumably if he were to become Prime Minister, nationalise Sainsbury's, Tesco M & S and all the banks etc, etc and use the profits for the good of the workers and pensioners.
Here Arthur, like Tony Benn, George Galloway, Tommy Sheridan and the rest of the left, has learned nothing from the failures of both Keynes in the West and the Bolsheviks in the East.  Both groups in a similar way, the latter, slightly more extreme than the former, thought that they could make capitalism work in a national-centric arena for the workers and call the result: 'Socialism In One Country'.
The left work to accomplish a compromise, as proposed by Keynes, with the ideology of the wages system which exploits human labour for profit and places a monetary value on that labour and its products (as commodities).  An ideology which fosters the creed of competition and contest, which leads to human estrangement, brings first squabbles among us then violence and ends with war and death.  An ideology which will deny the human race the talents of all the humans as many are blighted and stunted by a life of miserable wage labour producing useless and cheating products for market and in duplication 100 times over.  An ideology which will preserve the existing partition of humans into economic units (countries or regions) governed by leaders who will seek to protect their power and interests, which are different from the workers, through the rule of law and factitious process of parliamentary democracy.
Finally, Arthur called for more financial investment into the process where we, in Britain, could produce winners for the world sporting arenas.  Not just one Henman, but many many Henmans, across all the sports.
I guess old king coal is still a merry old soul, in his little world of grand delusions.

WILLIAM DUNN