Thousands of workers gathered in Coventry (UK) at the end of November to protest against the closure of the Jaguar plant in Brown’s Lane with a projected loss of 1150 jobs. From the December issue of Socialist Appeal.

We publish this article written by Ted Grant just before the general election in Britian in 1979. The article demonstrates that the Tory policies were doomed to failure because of the sickness of British capitalism and that the reforms offered in the Labour Party programme were unattainable on a capitalist basis. The only way to carry out these reforms and take society forward was the nationalisation of the means of production, and the creation of a planned economy under the democratic control of the working class.

The surprise defeat of Mick Rix by a right winger for the position of General Secretary of the rail union, ASLEF, will have come as a great shock to many in the union and in the wider Labour and trade union movement. Certainly it was not something that could have been easily predicted or even guessed at. The winner, Shaun Brady, is an old-style right-winger, relatively unknown in the union. He talks about taking the union back to the membership but in reality he means the membership of the Strategic rail Authority, CBI and the City of London! How did this happen? What does it mean? What lessons must be learnt from this?

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