Tag Archives: OMOV

Labour Party conference: Omov, Brexit fudge and betrayal on mandatory reselection

Will Hodgson of  gives an overview of the Liverpool conference

Without a doubt, this year was dominated by the struggle for greater party democracy – which is only to be welcomed. As a first-time conference-goer, this is a question that was raised time and time again both inside and outside the Arena and Convention Centre.

Obviously, the arrogant and self-entitled Parliamentary Labour Party needs to be brought under control as a matter of urgency. After all, the majority of Labour MPs have been plotting against Jeremy Corbyn since day one – if not before – attempting to sabotage him at every turn. Clearly, they are far to the right of the Labour membership and, once elected, usually enjoy a ‘job for life’. Indeed, some of them seem to think that they have a divine right to their elevated position. Should Corbyn become prime minister – which is far from certain, even if Labour wins the next general election – he would be held hostage by the PLP. In all likelihood the right would try one manoeuvre after another to get rid of him.

This struggle for democracy has crystallised around the fight for mandatory reselection (or open selection), a means by which the membership can exert some leverage over the careerists – Corbyn himself has stated on many occasions that he wants to empower the membership by giving it a real say in the decision-making process. Rule by the membership or rule by the PLP? Under the old trigger ballot system it was almost impossible to get rid of a sitting MP, as it gave disproportionate power to the labour bureaucracy.

Before conference, thousands of party members signed a petition from International Labour demanding the abolition of the undemocratic trigger ballot and the establishment of a truly democratic selection process before every election. The campaign appeared to receive a fillip when Unite’s general secretary, Len McCluskey, confirmed that he would fight to implement his union’s 2017 conference decision to support mandatory reselection. Then surprisingly even Momentum’s dictator Jon Lansman suddenly decided to go for mandatory reselection after having previously abandoned this old leftwing principle as soon as Jeremy Corbyn was elected.

Under pressure, Labour’s national executive committee felt it had to put somethingforward on the issue in order to contain the situation. Hence it proposed replacing the trigger ballot with two separate ones: the first for local affiliated bodies like unions; and the second for the local Labour Party branches. The threshold in both cases would be reduced from the current 50% to 33% and it would be enough for one of the two sections to vote ‘no’ to start a full selection process – ie, a contest between competing candidates. This represented a small step forward, but was still far from what is needed to hold our MPs properly to account.


However, things were not what they seemed. The NEC’s inadequate proposals had been put into the rule changes coming from the Party Democracy Review (‘Corbyn Review’). As a result a vote in favour of the NEC package would mean that all other rule changeson any of the issues dealt with would automatically fall.

Responding to the ruse on the Sunday morning, delegates supportive of open selection tried to reject the report from the conference arrangements committee (CAC) – the only way you can change the proposed timetable. They demanded that rule changes should be discussed first, before the recommendations of the Corbyn Review. After a show of hands on the CAC report, the result was incredible, with around 95% of CLP delegates voting against the report. But, when the unions were asked to vote, the picture was the exact reverse: no more than half a dozen delegates put their hand up against the report (mainly delegates from the FBU), but about 50 voted in favour. But the whole union block counts for 50% of the total conference vote, so it was unclear which side had the majority and a card vote had to be called. The result was incredibly close: 53.63% voted for the report; 46.37% against. What was going on?

Well, it turned out, quite incredibly, that Unite had instructed its delegates to vote in favour of the CAC report despite its supposed commitment to open selection. McCluskey said afterwards that he did so “on the request of Jeremy Corbyn” – the Labour leader acting once again as the conciliator. Sounding hurt when pressed by angry delegates as to why the union had abandoned its position, McCluskey protested afterwards like Lady Macbeth that he had done nothing of the sort – oh no, perish the thought. Had the motion by International Labour reached conference floor, he claimed, Unite would have instructed its delegates to vote in favour– despite doing everything to prevent it.

Having lost the CAC battle in the morning, supporters of mandatory reselection tried to mobilise delegates to vote against section 8 in the NEC proposals, which dealt with parliamentary candidates, as well as section 6, which contained the NEC fudge on leadership elections. The latter had now been made worse. Just like before, any leadership candidate would still need the support of at least 10% of MPs/MEPs, but in addition would also require nominations from 5% of individual party members, or 5% of union and other affiliates.

Anyway, speaker after speaker got up to oppose section 8. But it was now Jon Lansman’s turn to have a sudden change of heart. Halfway through the debate, Lansman suddenly put out a message saying Momentum was now supporting section 8, because it “addresses one of the key flaws of the existing system by separating the party branches from affiliates” – which apparently “gives members the power to begin an open selection”. Yes, Lansman added ruefully, it “isn’t perfect”, but “it is a step forward and there is no guarantee any of the remaining rule changes on reselection will pass”. He implored Momentum-supporting delegates to back card vote 8, as “we may not get another chance to increase accountability of MPs”.

From then onwards, the speeches on conference floor shifted markedly, militancy beginning to dwindle. Most speakers were still supportive of open selection, of course, but more and more you heard comments like ‘A small step forward is better than the status quo’, and so on. How things could have been different. If conference had voted to reject section 8, despite McCluskey’s ‘tactic’ earlier in the day, then IL’s motion would have been tabled later – and, with Unite instructing its delegates to vote in favour of mandatory reselection, as McCluskey claimed it would, that motion almost certainly would have won. Alas, the climbdowns of both McCluskey and Lansman ensured that section 8 was carried with 65.94% support – and section 6 won with 63.94%. Thanks to the undemocratic three-year rule, this now means that both issues cannot be revisited until 2021.

These votes also emphasise the massive democratic deficit that exists within the party, especially when you take into account the sheer size of the trade union block vote (50% of the total). Given that the other six NEC rule changes coming out of the gutted Corbyn review were voted through with a majority of well over 90%, this can only mean that a vast majority of CLP delegates rejected the NEC’s proposals on these two issues.


Another thing that has to be mentioned is the particularly egregious way that the compositing of motions has been used to exclude alternative and contending ideas – Brexit being a classic case. The Tories being in complete disarray on this vitally important matter, the Corbyn leadership and sections of the Labour right were able to find some common tactical ground – ie, that our priority must be to call for an immediate general election, so that a Labour government can negotiate a ‘sensible’ deal with the EU “in the interests of the country”.

However, the demand for a general election settles nothing, of course – which is why other sections of the right have opposed it as a fudge. Most notably they include the forces coalesced around the campaign for a People’s Vote, who naturally see it as yet another chance to initiate a slow coup against Corbyn’s leadership. Similar moves are underway in the unions, with leaders like Tim Roache of the GMB lining up to call for a second referendum. On the other hand, there is a minority who take a pro-Brexit view.

In other words, this is a very complex question, with many different positions adopted within the party. Thus over 150 contemporary motions were submitted on Brexit – the most ever received on a single issue at a Labour conference. This led to a marathon compositing meeting attended by around 250 delegates representing those who had put forward the various motions, which ended in the early hours of Monday morning. The upshot of all that was that Tuesday’s Brexit debate was on a composite motion that included both the leadership’s call to prioritise a general election and the possibility of a second referendum: “If we cannot get a general election, Labour must support all options remaining on the table, including campaigning for a public vote.”

Yet this is nothing new, obviously another fudge. The Labour leadership has been saying precisely this for a long time now, and the TUC two weeks ago basically voted for the Corbyn position as encapsulated in the above motion, stating only that another referendum should not be “ruled out”. The media got excited by the perceived spat between Sir Keir Starmer and John McDonnell – the latter echoing Len McCluskey, when he said that any new referendum should not include the ‘remain’ option and should focus solely on the terms of Brexit. Starmer, however, remarked that “nobody is ruling out ‘remain’ as an option”. Make of that what you will.

But oddly, whilst a large section of visitors to the conference gave huge rounds of applause to Starmer, as he spoke in support of the Brexit motion, the delegates largely sat on their hands – telling you something. In a strange twist of events, People’s Vote campaigners now seemed fairly happy with the motion (at least for the time being), even though it represented a fudge. Nothing has been resolved or properly debated – the compositing process serving to expose once again the democratic deficit within the party. In the end, conference passed the motion with around 99%support almost worthy of North Korea, despite the fact that there are obviously major differences of opinion on this question. For instance, the Tuesday edition of Red Pages– the daily commentary put out by Labour Party Marxists during the conference – seemed to go down well with many delegates, the headline demanding: ‘Brexit: reject the fudge composite motion’.

One more important thing that needs to be mentioned are those rule changes that sought to extend the use of ‘one member, one vote’ (Omov) – whether in the election of NEC members or even of the party’s general secretary. Similarly, the Party Democracy Review contained recommendations for “digital democracy” and “secure online voting systems”, with a new sub-clause passed, which promised: “the NEC shall invite CLPs to take part in pilots of staggered meetings; electronic attendance, online voting and other methods of maximising participation”.

However, for Marxists there are some serious problems with Omov. Just as we are opposed to the pseudo-democracy of national referendums – hence our opposition to a second Brexit referendum – as a general rule we are also against plebiscites in the party. There is a good reason why the move to Omov for the election of party leader began with the likes of Neil Kinnock and culminated in Ed Miliband’s Collins review – it was a rightwing ploy to dilute the working class nature of our party and atomise members by bringing the ‘common sense’ politics of the BBC or even The Sun into the Labour Party.

The same goes for so-called digital democracy, which too has the effect of atomising members – making it easier for them to be manipulated. Bear in mind the farce that was Jon Lansman’s Momentum coup – cynically presented as ‘democracy from below’. Omov, in Lansman’s hands, was a profoundly undemocratic move against the interests of the membership – one that stymied Momentum’s potential to be an effective, dynamic left trend in the party.

Online voting also marginalises the role of the unions. Yes, the representatives of rightwing unions have played an entirely negative role on the NEC. But in general the affiliation of unions is an enormous strength. While their bureaucratic leaders should not be allowed to prevent the democratic selection of parliamentary candidates, unions have clearly played an important role in preserving the character of the Labour Party as a workers’ party, even under Tony Blair.

But our main point remains this: one of our most powerful organising tools is representative democracy. We need to elect representatives who are accountable to and recallable by the party, and empower them to take informed decisions on our behalf.


This being my first conference and, given the intensity of the campaign to cynically smear leftwing anti-Zionists as anti-Semitic – an example of the Big Lie in action – I was slightly apprehensive. Would Zionist supporters, Labour and non-Labour, try to provoke an unpleasant or even violent confrontation with comrades from LPM – on the basis that we are ‘Jew-haters’, and garbage like that. Last year in Brighton they gathered aggressively around our stall, snatching copies of Labour Party Marxists and generally tried to rile us.

In the end, I need not have worried. Curiously in some ways, the likes of the Jewish Labour Movement seemed almost entirely absent – no leaflets, papers, posters. No angry shouting. Maybe it was a deliberate decision to lie low. Indeed, the right in general was remarkably quiet. The most you got very occasionally was a delegate muttering ‘disgrace’, as they hurried past into the conference hall.

The vast majority of delegates, however, did not take seriously the accusation that anti-Zionism equals anti-Semitism, or that the radical left and Jeremy Corbyn posed an ‘existential threat’ to Jewish people in Britain. They know it is nonsense and were totally unfazed by the headline in the latest LPM, which read: ‘Why Israel is a racist state’ – with many expressing sympathy or agreement. The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s so-called ‘definition’ of anti-Semitism has most definitely not captured hearts and minds.

In fact, the atmosphere was cordial and respectful – delegates and others were more than willing to engage with our arguments and share a joke. As alluded to earlier, it was easy to hand out Red Pages – which received a very warm reception.

Paul Mason’s ‘consensus democracy’: Same old ephemeral new

Paul Mason may now be championing ‘consensus democracy’, but its failings have long been established, writes Mick Last of the Labour Party Marxists

In an article published on November 1, journalist Paul Mason announced that he is joining Momentum.1)https://medium.com/mosquito-ridge/why-i-joined-momentum-e2e8311ea05c#.w4d2rhk1i He gives three reasons. The first two are to support Momentum, and to support Jeremy Corbyn, against the Labour right (one reason dressed up as two). The third, much more elaborated, is to support the organisational proposals of Jon Lansman and his co-thinkers against their internal opponents. Momentum, Mason says, “faces two alternative futures: one in which all the negative, hierarchical and factionalist tendencies of the 20th century left are allowed to resurface; another in which Momentum?- and ultimately Labour itself – becomes a horizontal, consensus-based organisation, directly accountable to its mass of members.”

Mason is a fairly eminent journo (BBC2’s Newsnight business editor and then economics editor for Channel 4 News before quitting this February in order to pursue a freelance career). But his potential political weight in support of Lansman does not come from his background in “impartial” TV reporting. Rather, it has two elements.

The first is Mason’s four books, Live working or die fighting: how the working class went global (2007); Meltdown: the end of the age of greed (2009); Why it’s kicking off everywhere: the new global revolutions (2012) and Postcapitalism: a guide to our future (2015).2)I leave on one side his ‘journo China novel’, Rare earth (2012), available used at 1p or remaindered at 98p on Amazon. This fertile book production on large issues can make Mason appear as a serious theorist. (No matter for this purpose that all four books are, in fact, journalistic rather than rigorous theoretical productions, that the predictions of the first three have already been falsified, and that the illusions of the fourth in the ‘gig economy’ have been recently exposed by the industrial tribunal ruling in the Uber case.3)www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-37802386.)

Second, and probably equally importantly, Mason is a ‘repentant Leninist’ like the Eurocommunists and, before them, many others (like Arthur Koestler or Roger Garaudy), though less significant than any of these. Though he tends to downplay his involvement with the semi-orthodox Trotskyist group, Workers Power, he was certainly already involved with WP in 1984 aged 24,4)www.reportdigital.co.uk/gallery/1980s/1882/2159/1286/feminism-1980s.html., as he still was in 2001, aged 41. 5)See M Larsen, ‘A tale of two campaigns’ Weekly Worker March 1 2001. In 2007 and 2008 he spoke at the weekend schools of the Permanent Revolution splinter from Workers Power (listings at www.permanentrevolution.net/search/?s=%22Paul+Mason%22), though, given that on these occasions he was plugging his 2007 book, no more than slight sympathy with the Permanent Revolution side of the split can be inferred. This is a substantial track record of involvement with one of the more dogmatic and bureaucratic-centralist among the Trotskyist groups. Work on political economy under this aegis may well account for Mason’s ability to turn himself from a ‘music and politics’ graduate and music teacher in the 1980s into an economics writer from the 1990s.

It is this substantial period of bureaucratic-centralist commitment, together with present explicit condemnation of Leninism, which qualifies Mason as a ‘repentant Leninist’ rather than merely a left Labourite with a far-left past.

Like ‘repentant Leninists’ more generally, he adopts the general line that ‘Leninism leads to Stalinism’. Like them, too, he argues for “respecting … the democratic institutions of the UK”. And, also like them, he advocates policies of exclusion: “Momentum must have the ability to immediately exclude from membership people who breach Labour Party rules, and who engage in [undefined] unacceptable behaviour.”

Mason claims, however, to offer a new alternative to discredited Leninism; not a mere repetition of the same old repentance. But it is anything but new. It is merely the same old pseudo-anarchism (with bureaucratic control supplying the real practical decision-making mechanism) of the ‘consensus’, anti-globalisation ‘social forums’ movement around 2000; and behind that, the same old ‘anti-authoritarianism’ which goes all the way back to Mikhail Bakunin.

If there is an added element, it is that ‘horizontalism’ is to mean plebiscitary ‘democracy’ without either any effective possibility of deliberation or means of unseating the authors of the plebiscite question – as practised by Louis Bonaparte, Adolf Hitler and Ayatollah Khomeini, and most recently before our very eyes by the Brexiteers and their fraudulent press.

The presentation of something old as really new is a distinctive inheritance of the post-1956 ‘new left’, and thereby of the Socialist Workers Party and related groups (Workers Power, which originated in the ‘Left Faction’ expelled from the SWP in 1975, is one); and of the Mandelite Fourth International, which adopted the idea of a ‘new vanguard’ in the 1970s. The basic idea is that the ‘old left’ is a waste of space and it is necessary to start again from scratch with ‘newly radicalising forces’. Ever since the post-1956 ‘new left’ the novelty of each ‘newly radicalising force’ has proved illusory.

What, if anything, are we to make of the more concrete arguments Mason offers in his ‘joining statement’?

Social movements

To begin with, Mason responds to discussions about “how Labour could ‘become a social movement’”. He argues that as an electoral party it cannot become a social movement as such, because “its structures have to mirror those of constituencies, councils, parliament itself”. However, he argues, Labour has to “learn from social movements”, meaning that it should “become much more clearly an alliance of groups with limited common interests: in social justice, workers’ rights, a zero-carbon energy system, the liberation of oppressed minorities, and opposition to adventurist wars”.

He makes no attempt to define what he means by a “social movement”. If what is meant is a mass movement mobilising very broad forces in society, there is not the slightest reason to suppose that the Labour Party’s ‘electoral’ and affiliate structures are an obstacle to such a movement. Consider the Social Democratic Party of Germany before 1914 and its European congeners; or, for that matter, the French or Italian Communist Parties at their height. Cooperatives, trade union fractions, social clubs, local fiestas, and so on, all operated alongside and together with the electoral form of organisation.

It is reasonably clear, however, that what Mason means is not this, but rather “social movement” in the sense of the 1970s women’s liberation movement, or the 1990s-early 2000s anti-globalisation movement, or Occupy.

By comparison with the late 20th and early 21st century far-left grouplets, these phenomena are no doubt impressively large. But by comparison with the mass European social democratic or communist parties of the past, or even with the Labour Party, they are trivial.

In the first place, even by comparison with the hundreds of thousands who signed up to Labour to support Corbyn, the numbers involved in them are marginal – with the exception of the Brazilian Workers Party (the source of the “people’s budget” idea), which, Mason conveniently forgets for a moment, both was a conventional political party and, when it took office, became merely a player in the ‘social-liberal’ game, like the Blairites and so on.

Secondly, and more fundamentally, the ‘social movements’ make a big splash for a little while, but are temporally ephemeral. Where now are the social forums? Where is Occupy?

In contrast, the big mass workers’ parties were built over decades and were able to achieve real, if limited, gains. The Labour victory of 1945, celebrated by Ken Loach’s film and by many Labour left supporters, depended in part on a favourable political conjuncture – but also on 14 years’ hard slog after the spectacular defeat of 1931. Before that, the Labour Representation Committee was founded in 1900 – it took 22 years for the party it established to become a contender for power. (This is, in fact, also true of the Brazilian Workers Party, which took a decade to achieve more than 10% of the vote.)

Remodelling Labour on the basis of the “social movements” would then mean abandoning that long, hard slog in favour of a series of ephemeral campaigns and street actions, without long-term results.

Moreover, if Labour is anything useful at all, it is, as it was in 1900, a political party which seeks the political representation of labour – that is, of the wage-earning class as a class – through the means available in the electoral system. To remodel Labour as “an alliance of groups with limited common interests” would, in reality, be to achieve what Blair and his Eurocommunist allies failed to do: to liquidate Labour as a party of the working class in favour of a ‘broad democratic alliance’ coalition.

From this angle, Mason’s ‘joining statement’ is his equivalent of Georg von Vollmar’s 1891 Eldorado speeches, in which this former ultra-left and general strike advocate announced his conversion to a ‘realism’ well to the right of those like Bebel and Kautsky.6)FL Carsten, ‘Georg von Vollmar’ Journal of Contemporary History No25 (1990), pp317-22. Such conversions are commonplace: both ultra-leftism and rightist coalitionism reflect an impatience to ‘do something now’ – it is just that the option of the hard slog of building, (or in 21st century conditions rebuilding) an effective movement is excluded a priori. Then, when it becomes too obvious that ‘direct action’ is not producing results, the only remaining option is coalitionism.

The fundamental step has been taken. Mason’s view remains overtly of the left. But the logic of his view is to become a Blairite, a Clinton Democrat or a Renzi-ite.


The demon of faction that over them hungIn accents of horror their epitaph sung

While pride and venality joined in the stave

And canting democracy wept at the grave 7)Memoirs of the life of the Rt Hon George Canning New York 1830, Vol 2, p58.

So wrote Tory politician George Canning on the 1807 fall of the ‘Ministry of All the Talents’ government, which introduced the abolition of the slave trade.

For Canning, both ‘faction’ and ‘democracy’ were ‘boo words’, carrying as much negative emphasis as ‘pride’ and ‘venality’. For Mason ‘democracy’ is not a ‘boo word’; but ‘faction’ still is. This complaint about ‘factionalism’ is a feature of the underlying dominance of British high politics by Toryism (including the Cobbettian radical Toryism of the traditional Labour right). But it is also a reflection of the ‘orthodox Trotskyism’ Mason continues to inherit from his time in Workers Power – which even if it does not ban factions outright, or ban ‘permanent factions’ (as the SWP does) – still regards them as wholly exceptional and undesirable. Thus,

I am not worried about ‘entryism’. Anybody who is in a leftwing group or party right now should be allowed to join Momentum, so long as they openly and irrevocably dissolve their organisations and pledge to support Labour in all future elections.

The emphasis is in the original, so that it is the demand to dissolve groups that is Mason’s main point; not the demand for unconditional and permanent future support for Labour.8)That itself is problematic. Is it to be even if Labour was to break the links with the unions, or to launch a new aggressive war, Mr Mason?

What is involved is a deep misunderstanding of absolutely fundamental necessities of social decision-making; a misunderstanding which also supports Mason’s advocacy of plebiscitism. Anti-factionalism makes sense for Toryism, which is an oligarchical and leader-cult politics, and all the more for open anti-democrats such as the early 19th century politicians like Canning. For purported democrats, it is a complete contradiction.

Equally, for traditional Stalinists, with their monolithism and leader cults, anti-factionalism makes a bizarre sort of sense. For Trotskyists – including former Trotskyists – the inheritors of Leon Trotsky’s Third International after Lenin, it should also be an obvious contradiction.

It is just in the nature of things that human beings have disagreements. Assuming there is a straightforwardly ‘right thing to do’, what it is is rarely obvious. Very frequently, there is not only a choice to be made between option 1 or 2, but from options 1 to 7 and within these, 1 (a) (i), 1 (a) (ii), 1 (b) … and so on.

To reach a decision, then, it is necessary to reduce the range of options. This is, of course, why the Labour Party, when it functioned at all democratically, had (1) the right of constituencies to introduce amendments to proposed motions, (2) compositing procedures and (3) discussion at party conference before the vote was taken.

Factions (and, in the politics of the state, parties) are a part of the method by which, on the one hand, the full range of possible options is brought to light in discussion; and, on the other hand, the range of options is reduced to a manageable number, through individuals allying, compromising and coalescing in factional groupings, between whose proposals choices are then made.

The underlying problem does not in the least go away if factions are banned. It is still necessary that the range of possible ideas should be reduced in some process of discussion, amendment and so on.

Otherwise, let us imagine a Momentum of 200,000 members, of which every member has (a) the right to put proposals by electronic circulation to the whole organisation and (b) the right of individual veto over all such proposals (which is what is actually meant by proceeding by consensus, rather than by vote).

Then, on the one hand, I get up in the morning, switch on my computer and find 10,000 emails with individual proposals for Momentum decisions waiting to be read. However, on the other hand, actually, I need not read them, because I can be pretty certain that someone among the 200,000 members will veto any of them, so that none of them will be adopted.

The reality is that someone has to reduce the range of possible choices. Behind any consensus process, there must be some decision-making mechanism which works otherwise. Thus, in the World Social Forum, the decisive voice was of the bureaucratic apparatus of the Brazilian Workers Party; in the European Social Forum, that of Rifondazione Comunista; in the London variant, Ken Livingstone’s London mayor’s office. In the absence of freedom to organise factions which endeavour to persuade others of their ideas, it must be so.

Hence my point above about The Third International after Lenin, where Trotsky makes the point that the full-time apparatus must function as a faction. Hence, to ban factions is merely to ban all factions except the full-time apparatus.

The apparatus then functions in exactly the way as Mason claims the ‘Leninist’ left group does – as an ‘enlightened-minority’ cog driving a half-ignorant bigger group – and, by not admitting its own factional character, it befuddles the believers in a real ‘consensus process’.

The ‘zombie ideology’ (which Mason claims affects the left groups) is, then, Mason’s ideology, which is a zombie version of the ideas of the anarchists, the ‘new left’ and the ‘children of 68’. The result of this ideology is to make democratic discussion impossible. In turn, this produces demoralisation as soon as the first flush of enthusiasm fails, which is in turn the reason for the ephemeral quality of the ‘social movements’ of the past period.


1 https://medium.com/mosquito-ridge/why-i-joined-momentum-e2e8311ea05c#.w4d2rhk1i
2 I leave on one side his ‘journo China novel’, Rare earth (2012), available used at 1p or remaindered at 98p on Amazon.
3 www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-37802386.
4 www.reportdigital.co.uk/gallery/1980s/1882/2159/1286/feminism-1980s.html.
5 See M Larsen, ‘A tale of two campaigns’ Weekly Worker March 1 2001. In 2007 and 2008 he spoke at the weekend schools of the Permanent Revolution splinter from Workers Power (listings at www.permanentrevolution.net/search/?s=%22Paul+Mason%22), though, given that on these occasions he was plugging his 2007 book, no more than slight sympathy with the Permanent Revolution side of the split can be inferred.
6 FL Carsten, ‘Georg von Vollmar’ Journal of Contemporary History No25 (1990), pp317-22.
7 Memoirs of the life of the Rt Hon George Canning New York 1830, Vol 2, p58.
8 That itself is problematic. Is it to be even if Labour was to break the links with the unions, or to launch a new aggressive war, Mr Mason?