November Remembrance Day blog, by Peregrin.

It’s November, which means it’s the time for red paper poppies again. When I’m asked why I’m not wearing a poppy it gives me pause for thought. Unlike many that obediently wear their poppy I do actually think about what I’m doing nowadays, if I choose to wear or not wear one I will at least do so mindfully and with purpose. Don’t get me wrong when I was young, I used to blithely wear my red poppy and remember all the dead people I had never met and never knew. Then, later, I would wear my white poppy to challenge that narrative of only remembering those who died as soldiers in the war. I’ve moved on again since then.

When I’m asked why I’m not wearing a poppy there are several reasons behind that. Most people that ask won’t want the answer. I suppose the easy answer is that I think that it’s more important to help the living than remember the dead. That’s a sound bite so let’s go deeper.

Even as a child I instinctively understood that history was important. We had to remember the suffering from the past to learn how to stop it happening again in the future. It should be a process of evaluation and improving. In my innocence I thought that’s what the red poppy stood for. That in some way we could prevent war by wearing it. As I got older I somehow came to believe that we could prevent war by remembering all the victims; soldiers, civilians, men, women, children and animals. I’ve come to the understanding that if this were true we would no longer have war or suffering or death, because remembering isn’t enough. We need to understand the reasons for it and put in place prevention and cures.

War – what is it good for? Well, it’s very good for making some people very rich. It’s very good for killing people, but not just any people; it doesn’t kill politicians and not so many rich people. It appears that the majority of people who are killed are going to be the poor old working class. Who does the fighting and the killing? It’s not so much the rich and the officer class is it? It’s the working class, privates, our children, the boys with the stars in their eyes off looking for adventure, and family, decent pay and heroism. Taken away to serve the ruling classes in a bid for control of the planet’s resources.

When I’m asked why I’m not wearing a poppy I reflect on the glorification of war, the way the poppy is used as a recruiting tool. We wouldn’t need to raise money through charities to support the victims of war if we did away with the wars of the ruling classes. The best way to support those victims is to stop making them.

I used to wear the white peace poppy, of course I was a pacifist back then, a hippy child of innocent heart. I used to believe in peaceful protest. In my naivety and because it made sense to me in the fight for justice and peace and equality, I thought it would make sense to the ruling classes to give up their wealth and their power, I don’t know why I thought they would want the same things that I did. I thought we could march and that when we had enough people we could just ask for what we want and make a better world for everyone through co-operation.

I think I’ve grown up a bit since then. Why would the rich give up their power over us voluntarily. The more power we take the more they will try to defend what they have. They don’t care about fairness or equality, that’s a lie they spin to the working class to get them to comply with the system from which they benefit the most.

When I’m asked why I don’t wear a poppy, these are the thoughts that go through my mind. How does it benefit anyone to wear these symbols? They are symbols of compliance, they are to distract us by making us think about the dead rather than the living, a great display of pageantry and theatre to entertain us. The class war continues while we look the other way and remember, but we never learn, we just remember the past when we should be looking into the present. Looking at all our class who die and are killed by the system, the same one that caused the wars in the past and that causes the continuing class war today.

When I’m asked why I don’t wear ay poppy, these are the thoughts that go through my head but I don’t have the words to express those thoughts and they wouldn’t understand or care if I did. They would take it as a criticism but it’s not. If you want to wear your poppy, if that’s your thing, if that’s how you make a difference in the world go ahead. I don’t care if it’s red, white, purple, black or rainbow coloured, I appreciate the sentiment behind the idea of trying to stop war. I just don’t think a poppy has the power to do that, I’ve lost faith; I think we need to think about it more.

When I’m asked why I don’t wear a poppy and why I won’t be attending Remembrance Day this year I ask the question why don’t you wear transgender badge?  Why won’t you be attending transgender day of remembrance when we stand together to remember a group of people that died this year around the world? Killed by the system, the same one that continues to kill people even to this day, young people who had to die for the crime of just wanting to be themselves. Because maybe if we remember the present instead of the past we might be able to figure out a way to stop it all happening again and again into the future. We do need to take action though – Watch, record, evaluate, understand and take action.

Transgender Day of Remembrance – 20th November  – Think it over!

Red and Black Telly roundup.









Red and Black Telly roundup.











Red and Black Telly roundup.











‘How Labour Governed’ – 1945-1951: Event from: Bristol Radical History Festival.

Event from: Bristol Radical History Festival

1945: The war in Europe has just ended and the Labour Party wins a resounding general election victory. What follows is celebrated on much of the left as a period of progressive government which should inspire us to build a fairer society.

However, at the time, critics pointed out that every socialist principle had been betrayed by politicians. In fact this was really a period much like any other, marked by continued militarism, colonialist suppression, racism, austerity and reactionary politics. The Syndicalist Worker’s Federation outlined their criticisms in the pamphlet How Labour governed and we reflect on their pamphlet to examine the legacy of the post-war Labour Government.

If you’d like to download a copy in printer’s pairs, click here: Prints: size, A5, double sided, B&W. Text retrieved from a scanned copy of the original 1960 SWF edition, which can be viewed here.

Red and Black Telly roundup.








Red and Black Telly roundup.






Residents say NO to redevelopment plans: ‘We must fight for the people, the planet and our beloved Carpenters Estate’

Focus E15 Campaign

A resident of the Carpenters Estate, Stratford, Newham, London E15, speaks out: From the day I was born, I have lived on the Carpenters Estate. It was also home to my Mother, Grandfather, Grandmother and Great Grandmother, along with Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, childhood friends and so on.  It has been a special place for me and

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Scotland: SNP COUNCIL IN STRIKEBREAKING THREATS

Anarchist Communist Group.

We are sickened but not entirely surprised to learn that the SNP[Scottish National Party]-run Glasgow City Council has threatened to bring in scabs against the striking cleansing workers and is bullying the GMB union with threats of billing them with the scabbing costs.

The SNP has a reputation for talking left and acting right, but this is beyond the pale. Any party that claims to be on the side of the ordinary worker does not use scabbing tactics.

This comes after an unsavoury scramble by many online nationalists to denounce the striking workers as “talking Scotland down” or being “dupes of the Labour Party”. Such simplistic anti-worker bile is to be expected of these keyboard clowns, devoid as they are of any class solidarity, but it was hoped that the SNP itself might have been more tuned in to the reality. It is abhorrent that instead they have gone with these capitalist, anti-worker divide-and-rule tactics.

We in the ACG [Anarchist Communist Group UK] believe in working class solidarity. We support the cleansing workers in their time of need because we know that when our time of need comes, they will support us. That’s how class struggle works.

Red and Black Telly roundup.