Sunday, 5 December 2010


      The ordinary people of this country, (and all other countries for that matter) have had to struggle for every little improvement in their living standards. We in this the 21st century sometimes forget just how hard and brutal that struggle has been. There have been beatings, prison, blacklisting and death heaped on those involved in those struggles, and the enemy has always been the same. the employers with the back up of the state apparatus. One such long and hard struggle was the 1911 dock strike. Most of the cities in the UK were involved in this bitter dispute but in Liverpool it brought the city to a standstill, had the military on the streets and two strikers were shot.
        The following is a short extract from Mike Royden's Local History Pages.  

        "---With a general strike in the city, the introduction of permits to move goods and services across city, the deteriorating situation was viewed with alarm, both locally and at government level.14 The permit system was really a working class control of the means of distribution, and even authorities in the city accepted that this was the only way to move goods; this was highlighted when the Head Postmaster asked the strike committee for permission to move mail via permit around the city.15
        The City Council saw their authority in the city slipping into the hands of the strike committee and the Lord Mayor cabled the Home Office informing them that ‘a revolution was taking place in the city ….. and that anarchy prevailed’.
        Porcupine recognised ‘the crimson flag of anarchy’, rioting and looting persisted and targeted in areas bordering the sectarian enclave dividing lines to affect shops and property of opponents religion, when shops and property belonging to people’s own religion survived.16
       The government realised that the strike committee had taken the first step of organising the transport of goods for themselves; Hikins even suggests that if allowed to continue, it could have resulted in social revolution, civil war and an end to state authority, a scenario that forced the government to take the only option open to it; that of persuading the employers, and owners to agree to union demands.17 This course of action had been promoted by Dunning in a communication to the Home Office prior to10 August when the initial contingents of police and military units arrived. 18---"

     Though we have moved to the 21st. century we should never lose sight of the fact that the struggle still goes on, what we have gained from struggle can be taken away again, and the protagonists are still the same.
This time it is the government cuts but lets not forget that it is at the behest of the financial/corporate bosses and if we don't want to return to the conditions of the 1911 era then we had better be ready to fight just as hard and long as those of the 1911 dock strike. You can rest assured that the powers that be, the millionaire cabal, are prepared to fight hard and long to get their way and safe guard their billions floating around in the banking casinos of this corporate gambling world.  They will not hesitate to put the troops on the street and the would not hesitate to give the order to fire. They will fight to protect their pampered, privileged positions with every means at the disposal. So we have no alternative but to do likewise. The Victorian era poverty awaits the meek.
a look at some of Glasgow's working class history of struggle.

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