Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/16544

Posted on 22 April 2013 at 11:22 GMT

Responding to distortions about Liverpool's socialist council

An open letter responding to an article by the Independent's Jane Merrick (Independent 13 April 2013), from Tony Mulhearn, surcharged Liverpool City Councillor and last elected president of the Liverpool District Labour Party.

Jane Merrick's use of the term 'My city' (does she still live in Liverpool?) is the signal that, like many Liverpudlians who have 'made good', she is shaping up to put the boot in on the Liverpool socialist council [1983-7], using Derek Hatton's flamboyance as an excuse to pen something which reads like a composite editorial from the Sun, the Mail, the Express and the then Liverpool Echo, complete with unproven allegations of vandalism by local authority worker. She even buttresses her case with millionaire Lord Kinnock's treacherous 'grotesque chaos' attack in 1985 to lend credence to her intemperate language.

She reinforces her true agenda when she pays homage to another millionaire, Lord Heseltine, for his assistance with some regeneration cash, neglecting to note that the same Tory slashed £120 million from Liverpool's budget between 1979 and 1983.

As to the worry her mother may have experienced as a result of the redundancy notice tactic, that's unfortunate, but she is using the only phoney weapon at her disposal to claim that the 47 [Liverpool councillors] set Liverpool back a generation.

If she would have carried out some rigorous research which one would expect from someone with the grand title of 'the political editor of the Independent on Sunday', she would have found that the 47 inherited a city in which 65% of its manufacturing had collapsed, when Liverpool was dubbed the 'Bermuda triangle' of British capitalism, and when major manufacturing firms had disappeared with the loss of 100,000 jobs. This was before the 47 were elected.

I assume that as a teacher, her mother belonged to a teachers' union. The tragedy is that the leadership of the main teachers' union in those years systematically undermined the campaign of the council to obtain resources precisely to defend her mother's wages and conditions and to resist the demand of Heseltine's colleagues to reduce the number of teachers, going so far as to take legal action against the council claiming they lost pay as a result of strike action called by the other unions in support of Liverpool's campaign for more government resources.

This was at a time when Liverpool City Council's workforce (including her mother) enjoyed the best wages and conditions when compared to all other councils in the country.

It's significant that Ms Merrick, in her eagerness to regurgitate the calumnies of the right-wing press, makes no mention of the houses built. She refers to the jobs created, the nursery classes opened, as some kind of irresponsible action, then blames us for rising unemployment in Thatcher's Britain. That kind of mentality defies rational analysis.

Perhaps the next time she is tempted to dip her pen in arsenic she might pause to reflect on the real story of the Liverpool 47.


This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 22 April 2013 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.






Related links:

Liverpool:

triangle'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future

triangleCan you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?

triangleLiverpool Socialist Party: Racism and capitalism, the link

triangleLiverpool Socialist Party: The Marxist view of history

triangleLiverpool Socialist Party: Opposing zero hours contracts

Council:

triangleSheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

triangleUnite local government sector plans strike ballot

triangleSchools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

triangleSalford Unison condemns pay cuts

Teachers:

triangleSchools and teaching: A perfect storm of cuts, underfunding, excessive workloads and low pay

triangleSchool spend is behind eastern Europe

triangleWorkers' struggles in Peru: eyewitness report

Jobs:

triangleNationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

trianglePCS ballots members to send message to government: scrap the pay cap

Reviews and comments

Reviews and comments

18/10/17

Port Talbot

Powerful picture of the Port Talbot steel workers' struggle

18/10/17

Russian revolution

October 1917 reviews: 'More bright than any heaven'

11/10/17

Theresa May

Theresa May, Frida Kahlo and turning women into wares

11/10/17

Docks

Poverty, repression and fightback on the docks

11/10/17

The Socialist

The Socialist Inbox

11/10/17

TV

Shocking insight into Isis

2/10/17

Sexism

Hugh Hefner's exploitation of women

27/9/17

Football

Women's football - Sampson allegations

20/9/17

Letters

The Socialist Inbox

20/9/17

Socialist

Interview: the "socialist John Le Carré"

20/9/17

Women

Refreshing, anticapitalist - but little pointing a way forward

13/9/17

Women

New documentary asks women how their bodies are sexualised and policed

13/9/17

Letters

The Socialist inbox

13/9/17

Che Guevara

Intimate insight into a revolutionary icon

6/9/17

Pensions

Bosses' pensions robbery

triangleMore Reviews and comments articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

triangle11 Oct CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike

triangle11 Oct The fight against racial discrimination is tied to fighting against...

triangle11 Oct Catalonia: Workers can finish what Puigdemont won't

triangle6 Oct Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs

triangle4 Oct The nasty party turns on itself... but the Tories must be driven out

More ...

triangle18 Oct Warrington & St Helens Socialist Party: 1917-2017; the October Russian Revolution

triangle18 Oct Hackney Socialist Party: 100 years ago - the Bolshevik-led revolution

triangle18 Oct Tower Hamlets Socialist Party: Capitalism in Crisis - is Corbyn the answer?

triangle19 Oct Waltham Forest Young Socialists: Deaths in police custody

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2