Save the Wales?

April 2024 Forums General discussion Save the Wales?

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    Those that have been mandated and delegated to do it. There’s no great mystery to it.

    In other words. a police force by any other name. So much for your society without laws, police or prisons.


    “In other words. a police force by any other name. So much for your society without laws, police or prisons.”

    But has the SPGB actually claimed that socialism could operate without rules, and by extension those necessary enforcement of them? I’m sure individual members may have said things like this, but what has been the party position?

    What is generally understood as a “police force” is something that is not under the control of the community it polices but in a position of power above it. That is the difference. So yes there would have to be people that enforced rules, but these people would have to be strictly mandated and answerable to the wider democratic society. Not a coercive “force” above society.

    These kinds of ideas aren’t limited to the SPGB, or even socialists. For example, read Pettit’s “Republicanism: A Theory of Freedom and Government”


    This Conference rules that it is policy that any socially useful regulatory measures will be retained in Socialism.(2006)

    “That the 1984 Conference Resolution, ‘This Conference affirms that socialism will entail the immediate abolition and not the gradual decline of the State’, be rescinded and replaced with: ‘That as the State is an expression of and enforcer of class society, the capture of political power by the working class and the subsequent conversion of the means of living into common property will necessarily lead to the abolition of the state, as its function as the custodian of class rule will have ended. Those intrinsically useful functions of the state machine in capitalism will be retained by socialist society but re-organised and democratised to meet the needs of a society based on production for use’ (2004)

    “This Conference affirms that any law concerned with the enforcement of class relations or property interests could have no place in socialist society, but that any regulation which may serve the needs of the community could become part of democratic organisation in socialism.(1998)

    “That this Conference recognises that rules and regulations, and democratic procedures for making and changing them and for deciding if they have been infringed, will exist in socialist society. Whereas a ruling class depends on the maintenance of laws to ensure control of class society, a classless society obtains social cohesion through its socialisation process without resorting to a coercive machinery. However, in view of the fact that in socialist theory the word “law” means a social rule made and enforced by the state, and in view of the fact that the coercive machinery that is the state will be abolished in socialist society, this Conference decides that it is inappropriate to talk about laws, law courts, a police force and prisons existing in a socialist society. (1991).

    If memory serves, the 2006 resolution was an attempt to remove the 1991 version, which was amended to buggery.


    I don’t know if this is the right place but not sure this deserves its own thread only being recorded somewhere.

    Yesterday in a speech to the Tory conference the Minister of Transport publicly endorsed the conspiracy theory about the “15 Minute city”, the idea that people should be able to access the shops they need within 15 minutes walking distance. Seems a good idea at least in socialism, but the conspiraloons see it as part of a plot by a shadowy elite to control and enslave us.

    I have a copy of a one of their leaflets which says:

    “AGENDA 2023. We will destroy 15 minute cities and BE HAPPY”


    “15 Minute City. Enslavenent in small steps. Cameras. Charges. Cutbacks. Control. Communism.”

    (If only getting to Communism was that easy!)

    Anyway, here’s what the minister said:

    “What is sinister, and what we shouldn’t tolerate, is the idea that local councils can decide how often you go to the shops, and that they can ration who uses the roads and when, and that they police it all with CCTV.”

    But local councils can’t decide this nor is there any plan to give them this power. It’s only in the minds of anti-15 Minute City conspiraloons. Among whom a Tory minister must now be included.


    They’re being clever stupid, the precise argument is:
    1) We won’t force people.
    2) This could lead to people being forced to

    Allied with the stupidity “We won’t tax meat”, when no-one is proposing that. Part of it is some of these ideas are discussed, in the civil service, they’re in the range of options doubtless ministers have seen and rejected, and doubtless Labour would reject as well. But at best it is a slippery slope argument, and the problem is, once you start accepting slippery slope arguments, you’re on a very slippery slope.

    But, they are right, in as much as ‘nudge’ and forcing people to comply without understanding or desire will backfire, but if we do need to reduce meat consumption, say, as a climate measure then that is something that needs to be discussed at length and decided: but, of course, they don’t really want democracy, they just want to muddy the waters, and position themselves as a bulwark against the stalinist hordes of Labour.


    I prefer the simpler theory that Harper is just stupid and just used the conspiracy theory, probably not realising that it was one, as part of the Tory party’s current pro-motorist rhetoric.

    More on the conspiracy theory of 15 minute cities here;

    Still, playing the pro-motorist card is not as bad as playing the anti-immigrant one.


    It might be a good idea to discourage, even ban, Chelsea tractors from entering Chelsea but 54.6% in favour in a turnout of 5.7% is hardly the “clear choice” that the non-socialist mayor of Paris claims. I make that 3.1% of the electorate in favour.

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