EIS Pay Dispute: Workers Won’t Pay for Capitalist Austerity

By Amy Dean, IMT Glasgow

As previously reported in Revolution, teachers in Scotland have been involved in an ongoing pay dispute. Unions have campaigned for a 10% pay rise in 2018/19 on the basis that teachers’ pay has fallen by 24% in the last ten years in real terms whilst workloads have become even more stressful.

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Queen Margaret Uni Workers Strike Against Cuts

Staff at Queen Margaret University took strike action on the 7th February to resist redundancies being put forward by university management. The plan was for around 40 staff to be cut in order to pay £1.65 million in covenants on a £35 million loan from Barclays. QMU is a small university with around 480 staff. Accounting for full and part-time staff who will be lost, this amounts to around 10% of the workforce.

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The SNP and the People’s Vote: A Mistaken Course

by Shaun Morris

After Theresa May’s humiliating defeat in Parliament in January, the SNP have once again lent their voice to calls for another referendum on Britain’s EU membership. The SNP leaders have endorsed the idea of a “People’s Vote” since October of last year, but had remained largely quiet on the issue, until the impasse in Parliament became clear.

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Scotland and The Brexit Crisis: General Election Now! (Issue 25 Editorial)

By Ross Walker, IMT Edinburgh

The Brexit crisis marks a new stage in the crisis of British capitalism and is a taste of very eventful year which will be 2019. Scotland in many ways has been quieter on the political front since the referendum but soon it will be dragged into this dramatic situation.

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Why Marxists support Scottish Independence

Alex Johnson, IMT Edinburgh

The movement for Scottish independence has started heating up recently. Dozens of Yes groups have been reconvening after a period of ebb in the movement, the All Under One Banner march in Edinburgh saw estimates between 80,000 – 120,000 mobilising in support of an independent Scotland. Similar marches saw 40,000 – 70,000 in Glasgow and 10,000-20,000 in Stirling, Dundee, Dumfries and Inverness. With this upswing in activity, it is useful explain the Marxist approach to Independence.

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Holyrood Blocks Railway Nationalisation

Scottish commuters were let down last month in a Holyrood vote to end the franchise of Scotrail, currently operated by the Dutch state owned company Abellio. Tabled as a motion by Labour, the vote would have seen a “break clause” that finishes Abellio operations as soon as 2022, rather than the planned 2025 end date currently in effect. The move comes from Labour’s manifesto promise of a sweeping reforms of nationalisation, including that of Scotrail, which would have been a huge win for the Scottish section of the party, who have lagged behind their English and Welsh counterparts as far as the Corbyn-fuelled push to further left policies is concerned. The motion was well beat however, with 85 votes to 34 as the SNP and the Tories both voted in favour of keeping the railway’s running in private hands, . These are not unexpected views amongst the Tory section of the parliament but it is a betrayal to the many left leaning workers who’ve put their faith in the SNP. The proposals were drawn up by left wing pro independence group, Common Weal, who have significant support within the SNP so this betrayal won’t go unnoticed among SNP members.

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Nationalise Dundee Michelin under Workers’ Control

David Swanson, IMT Edinburgh

The recent announcement that Michelin’s tyre-manufacturing plant in Dundee will close by 2020 exposes the harsh measures that capitalism will continually inflict upon society. A small group of elites prioritise profit over the needs of their employees and communities. In this tragic case, the lives of 845 workers have been thrown into jeopardy to further line the pockets of Michelin CEOs.

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