Red and Black Telly roundup.

My review of “The People’s Republic of Neverland The Child versus the State” by Robb Johnson

lipstick socialist

Books should be written by activists. Not by academics. Not by political commentators. Robb is a political songwriter whose day job is as a teacher. In this brilliant and inspiring book he reflects on his life on the frontline of the education system and the right-wing revolution that has taken place in our schools since the 1980s. He asserts ; “The state’s strategies of competition, outcomes and selection support the existence of a system of social privilege that not only serves the particular interests of the ruling elite but also creates a culture of stress and anxiety.”

Giving working class children the right to a free education was not altruistic in the 1870s. It was driven by the demands of the Industrial Revolution – the economy needed workers with some reading and writing skills. Over the years Governments have tried to shape children and  the education system according to their…

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Errico Malatesta: Errors And Remedies.

Anarchy in the Sticks!

Author: Errico Malatesta

Date: 1896 Source: “The method of freedom: An Errico Malatesta Reader”, edited by Davide Turcato

Notes: Translated by Paul Sharkey from “Errori e rimedi,” L’Anarchia (London), August 1896. This was a one-off publication “edited by a socialist-anarchist group,” as the masthead read.

Available in various formats from: The Anarchist Library

There is such a variety of folk calling themselves anarchists these days and peddling such a variety of disparate and contradictory ideas as anarchy, that it really is small wonder that the public, being new to our ideas and unable to make out at a glance the big differences lurking under the blanket of a common name, remains deaf to our propaganda and regards us with suspicion.

Of course we cannot stop others from adopting whatever title they choose; nor would our jettisoning the title of anarchists achieve anything beyond adding to the confusion, since the public…

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The Acorn – 61

winter oak

acorn 2019bNumber 61

In this issue:

  1. Libertà, libertà, libertà!
  2. Us against them
  3. To the humans who refuse to disappear!
  4. England is a prison
  5. William Blake: an orgrad inspiration
  6. Acorninfo

1.  Libertà, libertà, libertà!

A61 napoli2

“A massive new social struggle is about to begin, in which the vast majority of humankind will resist the techno-slavery being imposed on it by the fascist 1% elite”.

We sent out this urgent message on October 14 and reality has not been slow to catch up, as the slumbering masses everywhere awake.

The new front line is Italy, where thousands upon thousands have been taking to the streets in anger at the new curfew and draconian rules being imposed under cover of fighting “the virus”.

“Libertà, libertà, libertà!” they have been shouting across the peninsula, from Lombardy down to Sicily. “Freedom, freedom, freedom!”

Molotov cocktails have been thrown at the cops who ruthlessly enforce the despised clamp-down…

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Red and Black Telly roundup.

Open letter to North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust regarding Dr. Caroline Johnson M.P.

To whom it may concern,

I am writing to express concern about one of your staff members, Dr. Caroline Johnson, a part-time paediatric consultant at Peterborough City Hospital and M.P. for Sleaford and North Hykeham. Her vote to deny vulnerable children free school meals during the half-term break at a time when their parents face severe economic hardship is seriously alarming.

I no longer live in the constituency but I grew up just outside of Sleaford and completed my secondary education in the town during the mid 2000’s. Later, I worked in a supermarket in a Working Class community. I am acutely aware that Sleaford, indeed the entire county of Lincolnshire has significant rates of poverty compounded by the rural nature of the area.

If the pandemic and debate about whether children should be fed had occurred during my schooldays, some of my rural classmates would have gone hungry and their situation would have been even more desperate due to the relative isolation of communities in the central and south-western areas of the county.

As a youth worker I have undergone the safeguarding and child protection training that comes with such roles. I am sure Dr. Johnson will have completed similar training, with regular updates. Like me, Dr. Johnson has a duty of care to protect children and young people from harm. The Children Acts 1989 and 2004 codify this duty of care in statue and highlight the role of the NHS in keeping them safe. One of the basic principles of this legislation is to allow children to be healthy and help them to succeed.

By voting against feeding children at half-term, Dr. Johnson shows a blatant and abject disregard for her duty of care. This casts doubt on her fitness to treat vulnerable patients as a paediatric consultant. Has she forgotten the Hippocratic Oath? Has she sacrificed the ethics of her profession to her political career?

We are all aware of the importance of healthy, balanced diets in relation to child development and nutrition. Poverty significantly diminishes their chance of consuming such a diet. McDonald’s is now offering one million meals free to families affected by the government’s failures. Does Dr. Johnson truly believe, in her medical opinion, that vulnerable children’s nutritional needs are better met by fast food than school meals prepared to strict nutritional standards?

I wish that my concerns be taken seriously by the NHS Trust.

Yours faithfully

Jack Collins.

If anyone would like to add their name to this letter, whether or not they reside in Lincolnshire, please e-mail wsol at riseup dot net or use the contact form.


Gary Stacey (IWW)

Peregrin Scotney (IWW)

Millie Kettell (IWW)

Elliott James

Red and Black Telly roundup.

Solidarity against the hostile environment, and more news and events for early October

Red and Black Telly roundup.

The end

We wish the South Essex crew well in their future projects.

The South Essex Heckler - Archive

The South Essex Heckler project has reached the end of the road. This is the low key, low maintenance successor blog:

Estuary stirrings

There are a few reasons why we’ve knocked this project on the head…

Firstly, we don’t think it achieved the aim we had of bringing anarchist politics to a local audience. Sure the Heckler has created a following but a lot of that has been on the back of the non-local stuff we’ve written, particularly in relation to the COVID-19 crisis / lockdown / the ‘new normal’.

Secondly, we also set out to create a loose alliance of like minded radicals in the south of Essex. Suffice to say that what we thought was the start of a loose alliance sadly melted like snow on a summer day as the COVID-19 crisis / lockdown / the ‘new normal’ revealed a lack of critical, questioning thought among…

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