George Walford: The (Anarcho-) Socialist Party (46)

SOME BACKGROUND This party (with its companion parties) claims to be the only socialist, Marxist, revolutionary movement. It declares that socialism cannot be established until an overwhelming majority has accepted its case, but since it was founded in 1904 its membership has failed even to keep up with the increase in the world population. It… read more »

George Walford: Breakaway!

SPANNER, a New Journal for New Thinking Issue No. 1 [address], 52 pages, occasional illustrations, £1 SPANNER claims to be A New Journal for New Thinking; the list of contents runs: The Green Wave, Common Ownership, That Frame of Mind (discussing the principles of a socialist society), Neo-Connectionism (on artificial intelligence), The Road to Socialism, Standing… read more »

George Walford: NOOMP

Resistance to the Poll Tax has encouraged the less thoughtful reformers and revolutionaries to believe that at last the people are starting to move in their direction. As one journal, Counter Information, puts it: The Poll Tax need not be a single issue campaign. We do not live in a vacuum. Anti-Poll Tax groups whether… read more »

George Walford: Stack of the Artist of Kouroo

“Scholars, load your texts!” The command opens Austin Meredith’s proposal for bringing study of Henry David Thoreau into the world of the computer. One CD-ROM (compact disk of read-only memory) can carry Thoreau’s complete works – “all books and drafts, magazine articles, journals, factbooks, letters to and from and about” – and still be about… read more »

George Walford: Graduated

GRADUATED income tax, and effectively unlimited picketing rights for trade unions, were introduced in the 1870s by Disraeli, Conservative Prime Minister. (Roy Jenkins in the Sunday Times, 13 May). from Ideological Commentary 46, July 1990.

George Walford: Freedom (46)

Anarcho-capitalists, and others in favour of the free market, will be pleased to learn that the Association of European Airlines is on their side. Faced with EC attempts to ban the cartel-like arrangements between airlines and force them to compete with each other, the incoming AEA president protests, and calls upon free market theories for… read more »

George Walford: Precision

Gellner E. 1988 Plough, Sword and Book; the structure of human history. London: Collins Harvill, 288 pages £15. In this book Professor Gellner distinguishes three stages of society: first came hunting-gathering (the “hunger-gatherers” on p.33 is presumably a misprint), next based on the single discovery of food-production, and finally (so far) industrial, based on the… read more »

George Walford: On Defining Socialism

Many of the important words have more than one meaning, and socialism is no exception. One definition gives it as common ownership and democratic control. At the lowest it means redistribution of income in favour of the poor, and Neil Kinnock has now repudiated even this minimal version, committing the Labour Party against any massive… read more »

George Walford: Takeovers

Takeovers come in various sizes, and the attempt by Boris Yeltsin and his supporters to take over the USSR is one of the biggest yet. His autobiography [1] is much what one would expect, but it does raise a few striking points. After graduation in civil engineering Yeltsin was offered a job as foreman on… read more »

George Walford: Feminists

FEMINISTS advocating greater social influence for women on the grounds that their gender renders them inherently tender, gentle and loving (while men are naturally aggressive, domineering and hating) have a difficult case to make. They can, perhaps, argue that Myra Hindley, Elizabeth I, Catherine the Great, Boudicca and Our Lady of Grantham were induced by… read more »