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From The Socialist newspaper, 18 January 2012

John Lewis economy: another fantasy from Corporal Clegg

Elaine Brunskill

Lib Dem leader and deputy prime minister Nick Clegg has outlined his vision of a 'John Lewis economy' saying that businesses owned by their staff are more dynamic and have higher morale.

For former factory workers in a Carlisle textile and dyeing company, this must sound like a sick joke.

The factory had been part of the John Lewis Partnership since 1965, and many of the workers had been there for decades. However, the 'partnership' decided the factory was no longer viable and had to be sold on. One of the workers explained to us that John Lewis called a consultation meeting, but "We were textile workers up against professionals. I asked the personnel head: If we are all co-owners, what part of the business do we own? He replied: 'Tough decisions have to be made.'"

The factory was sold on to Stead McAlpin, and in April 2009 60 of the workers were sacked, but did not receive the enhanced redundancy payments they would have been entitled to if they'd still worked for John Lewis.

At the time of being sacked the workers told us that John Lewis always referred to the partnership as a democracy: "but it was only a democracy until their profits were threatened - then there was an inner steel ring to defend: big pensions; big salaries and big pay-offs for the bosses."

If this is the best vision of capitalism on offer for workers it's time to look for an alternative!

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In The Socialist 18 January 2012:


Anti-cuts campaign

Stand up to Tory bullies

Pensions attacks can still be defeated

Labour leadership approves the Con-Dem cuts

Cameron's attack on Scottish independence referendum backfires

Welfare Reform Bill:- Lords compromise is no victory

Ofsted: "requires improvement"

John Lewis economy: another fantasy from Corporal Clegg

Them & Us


Socialist Party NHS campaign

Keep private vultures out of our NHS!


Youth fight for jobs

End the slave labour culture of workfare


Socialist Party workplace news

Electricians' national meeting plans next steps in battle against pay cut

Unilever workers say hands off our pensions

South Yorkshire Stagecoach bus drivers take eighth day of strike action

Jobs massacre at La Senza

Doctors support call for action


Obituary

Rob Windsor: socialist fighter and Coventry Socialist Party councillor 1964-2012


Socialist Party feature

1972 Derry - "this was murder"


Socialist Party campaigns

EDL intimidation fails in Barking

Save community schools - no to academies

Protect women's rights - oppose the abstinence bill


International socialist news and analysis

Greece: Non-payment movement against new housing tax

Irish 'poll tax' battle has begun

Nigeria: Fuel strike suspended


 

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Related links:

Nick Clegg:

triangleDysfunctional system

triangleLiberals' 'democratic' conference

triangleLib Dems - a party rooted in capitalism

triangleGovernment Con-Demned at ballot box

triangleLeicester: still angry with Clegg

Textile:

triangleYeadon Mill strike 1913

triangleManningham Mills 1890-1891: A strike that changed Britain's unions

triangleGarment workers demand a living wage

triangleFury at John Lewis' trickery

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