All that is set out here is true. However one feels bound to ask why the story goes quiet between 1974 and the present. Where is the NUM now, where, in fact is the NCB and the entire UK mining industry?
The real truth is that the struggle of capital and labour continues, it is the common thread in the lives of the working classes. We won. And eased the passage of Thatcherism into the world. Would the eighties have been any easier for us had the Unions failed to engage in ’74? I doubt it. So we lose, either way, because our great hope – a Labour Government fails so often to deliver.
The NHS is the most visible drive towards privatisation, with education not far behind. The cuts sweeping local government are not simply the effect of the recession, but an attempt to abolish large areas of public services.
The restructuring of public sector pensions has seen significant resistance, with 750,000 on strike on June 30th and 2,500,000 on November 30th. These 2 days of strikes forced some concessions from
the government, and some unions seized the opportunity to withdraw from future action while negotiations continue. Meanwhile the NUT, PCS and UCU have called a strike on March 28th which will see approaching 1,000,000 on strike.
A serious debate is raging in the trade union movement – how far can we go in resisting the government? Will strikes win further…
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