The government wants to talk to the Taliban but not to us.
So it seems that you can kill British troops, blow up schools that teach girls, kill women students and protect drug merchants but if you take legal action, under the most restrictive anti trade union laws in Western Europe, the government will not even talk to you.
Of course if our strike action had been more effective then the Tories would talk to us and more importantly start making concessions; that’s the brutal truth of it. They talk to the Taliban as they are threat; they don’t to us, as we are not.
We began this dispute, as with all the others before it, with no plan; every move was ad hoc. If you want to get into a fight then you have to plan as to win that fight. The NEC did not have a plan.
For years we have advocated a levy. If one, had been started when we first agitated for it, then we would now have a proper funding stream for selective and other actions. Even if the union leadership do now agree to a levy; and that’s the mood music; it will take months to get it up and running and longer to get some decent chunks of money coming in. Now usually this sort of thing is forgiven by the saying ‘better late than never’; in reality they are just late.
The other mood music is that we return to action later this year; hastily qualified by ‘provided the consultation shows that members and activists are up for this’. The problem with this approach is that in the absence of a plan of possible action for the members and activists to evaluate, and then they are just faced with a vacuum.
We do hope that activists and members opt for action. If they do, then there has to be a proper plan of what to do next. The NUT is saying that they might take action in November. The worse plan would be to just co-ordinate with them and have a one day strike; no doubt tagged N ’something’ – insert number. Let’s fight with the NUT but let’s not rely on the NUT’s leaders; let’s have a worked out plan that has been democratically agreed amongst us and let’s fight to win; not just fight.