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Trade Unionism

Book Review: 'My Case'

'My Case,' by Walter V. Osbourne, (Eveleigh Nash. Is. net.)

Ten years ago a judgement in a certain trade union case was given by the section of the House of Lords known as the "Law Lords" that became world famous as the Taff Vale case.

It was an action by the Taff Vale Railway Co. against the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants to recover damages in respect to injury arising from a strike of the railway men, and the judgement was in favour of the masters.

This case was one of the greatest factors in the building up of the Labour Representation Committee (now the Labour Party) and Richard Bell, then secretary of the A.S.R.S., was chairman of the Committee during 1902.

Special Party Meeting on Poland (1982)

Special Party Meeting on the political situation in Poland

Head Office

Recorded: 
Monday, 1 February 1982

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Editorial: Double Standards

Thirty years ago this month began the Miners’ Strike which ended in defeat.  But the class struggle continues. On both sides. The recent strike by workers on London Underground led to calls by capitalist politicians for fresh attacks on the organised working class movement. They want new restrictions on strike action, proposals for a minimum service to be provided by London Underground workers like the current legislation around the fire service, new thresholds to make sure a majority of union members vote for strikes rather than just a majority of those who cast their ballots.

Grangemouth and the Limits of Trade Union Action

The recent conflict at the Scottish oil refinery shows who holds the whip hand under capitalism.

Grangemouth oil refinery and petrochemicals plant on a 1,700-acre estate on the Firth of Forth 25 miles from Edinburgh is owned by INEOS, the world's fourth largest chemicals conglomerate, and also the largest privately owned company in Britain. The Grangemouth plant is Scotland's only oil refinery providing 85 percent of Scotland's petrol, processing about 200,000 barrels of oil per day, it also powers the Forties pipeline which supplies a third of Britain's North Sea oil. INEOS, launched in 1998 is owned by its management, headed by chairman and chemicals industry veteran Jim Ratcliffe, and now has a turnover of $43 billion (£27 billion). PetroChina bought a stake in Grangemouth in 2011 in a deal that was meant to secure its future.

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