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ROUND AND ABOUT
The Festive Season is upon us – a time for cards, presents and surprises and that’s certainly true as far as BARRY is concerned. His latest wheeze was a move to recall the NEC in November to get the union to fund his legal appeal against his High Court defeat. Called by JOHN McGOWAN the NEC duly met on 19th November but lo and behold, none of the Moderati turned up. Some had genuine apologies, others pleaded “other union business” and the rest gave no apology at all. Those who did show endorsed President GODRICH’s ruling that the union would not fund RAMSBLADDER’S legal action – though whether that ruling is valid may be questioned by the Mods at the next regular meeting, assuming they bother to turn up for it.
No one knows why the Moderati opted for a boycott at the last minute of a meeting called at their specific request. The Top Jocks are sticking to their official line, which is that they did it to avoid defeat when they found out that some of their supporters could not possibly make it. Others suggest that they blanked the meeting because their new-found allies in Inland Revenue made it clear that they would not back the BARRY motion. The Mods are certainly very keen to keep PRIESTLEY and his mates on side these days but what probably tipped the balance away from McGOWAN’s lobby is the fact that some prominent Mod leaders want the whole BARRY business dropped – and the sooner the better.
RAMSBLADDER rarely communicates with them these days, doubtless spending more time improving his handicap and looking for further gainful employment outside PCS. But his outstanding dispute is in danger of becoming an albatross around those who hope to take his place as outright Moderati boss.
Dear PAULINE has just sorted out her latest divorce. Keeping the name was part of the settlement – a wise move, as no one would remember her if she reverted to her maiden name. She believes she can win the presidency next time round. Though whether she gets the nomination is also in doubt as the Inland Revenue Me Firsters have to be sweetened. If the MAD MONK or one of his cronies wants the presidency it will be very difficult if not impossible for the Moderati to refuse.
Their problem is simply that the Group has no machinery to elect a “leader”. They did in the dim and distant past of the 70s but few can remember it and none want to throw it open to the voting fodder they rely on to keep them well fed and watered.
And the trough is filling up again. JIM McAUSLAN is soon to depart for richer pickings as he’s got the General Secretaryship of BALPA, the airline pilots union – or so he’s been telling us for the past week or so. CHURCHYARD wants his golden handshake and ADAMS and McCREADIE will definitely go next year on retirement. McCREADIE hopes to retire to Ireland and GRANDPA ADAMS will have plenty to do at home with a new child of his own on the way. VERONICA BAINES and SKIPPY STANSFIELD are also hinting that they’ll take an early bath if a “suitable” (Falconcrest-speak for “juicy”) retirement package is put on the table and even MICKEY DUGGAN is talking about hanging up his gloves if the price is right.
SERWOTKA will want to earmark a place for his friend BATTLEMUCH and the Moderati will probably want to promote one of their loyal stooges like DAMIAN CARR, a protégé of JASON DROSS. LANNING, who still dreams of being GS, covets the DGS post – not for material gain as he’s on enough already but for the glory. But this will be fiercely resisted by the JOCKOCRACY who hate his guts more than they loathe SERWOTKA.
The JOCKS have been gloating over the demise of LANNING’S “PCS Friends” -- officially “in abeyance” since it was exposed by the PFL last month and they’re hardly trembling in their boots at LORD UNDY’S new “PCS DEMOCRATS” faction. Though the Mods expect a minor swing to LEFT UNITY at the next elections they’re banking on holding their low-caste vote and winning some of the high-caste constituency away from the Underlings. That, together with the IR Me Fisters will give them another overall majority, they think.
LORD FLICK has been scrabbling around trying to forge a new alliance with the LUNITY – reinventing himself as a “social-democrat” (whatever that means these days) – and trying on some of the TROTS old clothes. UNDY’S been converted to the need for annual conference and annual elections though significantly he’s saying nothing about the election of all senior full-time officers or the restoration of a democratic rule-book. UNDY now talks of “taming” the TROTS – though not to their face – by forming an anti-Mod front taking on board some of the left’s long-standing demands. He believes that the TROTS can be bought with a few cosmetic changes and in return he’ll get the lion’s share of their votes.
He’s clearly got a lot to learn. Like all high-castes he has little understanding of the low-caste constituency or the arcane politics of the Assorted Trots within it. Nor does he know who to deal with or what their strengths are. UNDY concentrates on the leadership of LUNITY – dominated by the old MENDICANT faction, which now calls itself the Socialist Party, and its cousin, the higher-profile Scottish Socialist Party. He ignores the SOCIALIST WANKERS and the SOCIALIST CAUCUS or the maverick independents who flit from one left camp to another like MARK himself in the past.
In so far as the Underlings can keep the Moderati at bay amongst the high-castes “PCS Democrats” will have a use to the left. But that’s about it. None of them trust UNDY – with good reason – and when he’s no longer of any further use he’ll be dumped.
If UNDY and SARAH JONES had hoped to force the Moderati into defending the awful constitution we now have – largely their own creation when they were allied to the Mods during the merger talks – they will have been sadly disappointed. The Moderati are quite happy to return to annual conference and annual elections – or at least they’re not going to fight to oppose them.
Few of them actually relish the prospect of having to face the jeers and abuse of the assembled ASSORTED TROTS on an annual basis. But the JOCKOCRACY recognises that it will at least provide them with another jamboree for their own followers and appease the loyal foot-soldiers who look forward to a week at the sea-side and a bit of bunce every year.
Christmas, as we all know, comes but once a year and we’ll all be sending our begging letters to Santa soon in the hope of the presents to come. Few of us get what we want but most will get what they deserve…