Archive for December, 2007

Dead Socialist Watch, #302

December 31st, 2007

Philip Whitehead, Labour politician; born 30 May 1937; died 31 December 2005. Older Stoa discussion here.

DSW, #181

December 31st, 2007

Karl Renner, Austrian socialist politician; born 14 December 1870, died 31 December 1950.

Dead Socialist Watch, #301

December 27th, 2007

Jim Figgins, railway signalmen and trade unionist, who travelled slowly from the communist-influenced left (the Railwaymen’s Minority Movement and the Railway Vigilance Movement) to leadership positions (executive, 1931-4, an organiser from 1938, assistant to the general secretary in 1943, elected general secretary in 1948, retiring in 1953). Richard Crossman thought he reminded him of “a retired Anglo-Indian country gentleman farmer” [David Howell, in the ODNB]. Born Largs, Ayrshire, 8 March 1893, died at Cuddington, Surrey, 27 December 1956.

DSW, #245

December 27th, 2007

Ada Nield Chew, trade unionist, ILPer and suffragist, who became paid organiser for the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies in 1912. After the war, she ran a successful mail-order wholesale drapery line. Born Audley, Staffordshire, 28 January 1870, died Burnley, Lancashire, 27 December 1945.

“I Play The Man I Am”

December 27th, 2007

Michael White, in tehgraun:

[Gordon] Brown is a Shakespearian tragedy in the making, says one MP: Othello’s jealousy, Hamlet’s indecision, the futile rage of Lear and Brutus’s weakness for bad advice. “But at least we’ve got rid of the Macbeths.”

DSW, #180

December 24th, 2007

Louis Aragon, poet, novelist, surrealist, socialist; born 3 October 1897, died 24 December 1982.

Beavers to Return to Scotland?

December 24th, 2007

Over here.

In Memoriam

December 24th, 2007

Andrew Glyn, Marxist economist, born 30 June 1943, died 22 December 2007 [via].

Tony Blair, Catholic

December 23rd, 2007

So, Mr Blair’s become a Catholic, and there are a billion pop explanations in play — that Blair’s keen to wallow in guilt for his disastrous foreign policy, and nobody does guilt better than Catholics (cf going straight into the Middle East job after doing so much, and in such a well-intentioned way, to bollocks up the region) — that it’s the long-term result of being married to Cherie Booth, once you’ve jumped through all the Carole Caplin papaya-flavoured hoops that have been set up along the way — that you can’t quite keep that much moralism bottled up inside you without letting it spill out all over something, and now he doesn’t have the British people anymore he might as well absorb himself into the Holy Roman and Apostolic Catholic Church. (I’m sure we can always come up with more: if you do, pop ‘em in the comments).

But it seems to me there’s a more interesting, longer-term trajectory at work in what we can usefully for the purposes of this post call Blair’s mind, and I’ll say a bit about that over the fold.

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Bush Acknowledges Existence of Carbon Dioxide

December 22nd, 2007

Over here.

DSW, #9

December 22nd, 2007

Randolph Bourne, (1886-1918) (also here), author of the classic essay War is the Health of the State, left unfinished at the time of his death in the great flu epidemic.

“I Turned My Face Away & Dreamed About You”

December 22nd, 2007

Alan Connor, over here.

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