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International Socialism, Summer 1979



(Summer 1979)


From International Socialism, 2:5, Summer 1979.
Transcribed by Marven James Scott.
Marked up for by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


The editors have been acutely aware that in our first 4 issues we did not publish anything that was directly concerned with the British working class today. So we do not need to apologise for the length of Steve Jeffrey’s article in this issue. We hope it will stimulate replies and also participation in the weekend school that is being organised on the same topic in October (see the advert on page 53 reproduced below – CH).

Inevitably though, this has put pressure on the space available for other material. For this and other reasons two important debates have had to be held over: Bob Rowthorne’s article in support of a reform programme that includes import controls, and Dave Turner’s long awaited attack on the Labour Theory of Value – both with replies from the editors. We hope to publish both in the October issue of the journal, and in the meantime we continue the value debate with Miguel Garcia’s article in this issue.

Last time we had to hold over Phil Spencer’s article on the Eurocommunist Left, also due to lack of space; and we publish it here now. We refer our readers to Chris Harman’s Crisis of the European Revolutionary Left, and Colin Barker’s A ‘New’ Reformism, both published in issue 4, for further background material on this subject.

Finally we would like to draw the attention of readers, particularly in Britain, to the article on Alternative Production. Apart from in a few isolated exceptions – such as the alternative proposals of the Lucas stewards’ Combine Committee – the question has not yet become a central one on the Left in this country. But if the indications of Sweden, Italy and Denmark are anything to go by, it could well become one shortly. We cannot pretend to have done more than familiarise our readers with some of the most important arguments that its supporters use in our present issue. Even so, this is a necessary starting point for future work to be done.

Socialist Workers Party Day School

Forum: Has the ‘forward march’ of the Labour movement been halted?
A discussion around the views put forward by Eric Hobsbawm, Richard Hyman and Steve Jeffreys.

Ruling class strategies
Wage negotiations and shop stewards power
Economism, syndicalism and revolutionary politics
Has right wing trade unionism a future?
International trends in trade unionism

Forum: Strategies for the movement
A discussion on the perspectives of the Institute for Workers Control,
the Alternative Economic Strategy and the Rank and File Movement

Saturday 8 September
Polytechnic of Central London, New Cavendish Street, W1.
Organised by the Socialist Workers Party Training Department
and International Socialism Journal (PO Box 82, London E2)

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