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ROUND AND ABOUT
By Judas Iscariot - September 2003

At the TUC in Brighton we thought the summer would never end and that everything we’ve been told about global warming was true. SERWOTKA made his mark – wearing a tie for possibly the first time in his life and getting some modest media coverage during the dull bits -- though he was clearly overshadowed by the giants of the Amicus, Unison, TGWU and the GMB unions.

But the dark clouds have returned, and none more so than for Tony Blair. Campbell’s gone, Hoon will soon follow and as for Tony – who knows? Not the Perm Secs it seems because it’s business as usual in DWP and all points west. Or if they do they’re keeping their counsel to themselves until Lord Hutton presents his report.

If Blair does go in the traditional way – the knife in the back when you least expect it – it may mean the end to the crackpot schemes which have led to the biggest staffing crisis the fledgling DWP has seen. Meanwhile, while the gossip and rumours fly at Labour Party Conference in the wake of the Brent East by-election, another result is pre-occupying the great minds of the Socialist Caucus, one which seems to passed the media pundits by.

It was, of course, the titanic struggle in the once safe-Labour William Morris ward in the London borough of Waltham Forest. Now for those who don’t happen to live in that part of London the plot begins with the resignation of Labour Councillor Martin O’Connor following the discovery, after five years in office, of a conflict of interest between sitting on the council whilst working for the Waltham Forest Arts Council. O’Connor, to his credit did check this out twice and was told that no such conflict existed. That didn’t stop the local Tories bleating while the local rag banged on about the £35,000 of public money paid out to him over the past five years to carry out his duties. In the end O’Connor stepped down and a by-election was held on 4th September.

Now the most famous resident of this ward is none other than LEE ROCK, who stood in the 2002 elections on the SOCIALIST ALLIANCE ticket and getting 256 votes (which in Trotspeak is a good vote).

Needless to say, LEE came bottom of the poll this time with 84 votes and Labour was beaten by a 76-year-old Liberal Democrat pensioner called Bob Wheatley. Rejecting criticism that he was too old to do the job, Bob said: “There are a lot of traffic problems, especially the rat-running traffic in Winns Avenue. The rats in Lloyd Park are another problem that is affecting my constituents”.

They’re clearly affecting poor old ROCK’s judgement as well. He blames his poor showing on his local SWP comrades – who after all dominate the “Socialist Alliance” – for not putting much effort behind him. Not surprising as they didn’t want him to stand in the first place because they didn’t think he’d get much support, partly because he belongs to a fringe TROT group which the SWP despise, and finally because some of their supporters wanted to rally behind Labour to keep the old Liberal git out.

LEE ROCK is a member of a tiny Trot group with a name almost as big as its actual membership. His Communist Party of Great Britain (Provisional Central Committee) or CPGB for short has a membership which hovers around the 25 mark and a paper known as the WEEDY WANKER. It is led by a fantasist called JOHN GREGORY CHAMBERLAIN, who calls himself “Jack Conrad”, “John Bridge” and “James Marshall” to fool the secret police he thinks are after him. Our CAUCUS hero is one of the few members who actually uses his real name on the principle that no-one would believe it. If you don’t believe me ask his chum, CHRIS FORD.

FORDSKI, by the way, lives again. All the trumped-up charges of Pathfinder picket violence have been dropped following the deportation of the chief witness (an illegal immigrant) against him. Watch out for more appeals on behalf of obscure Ukrainians in the future!

While we're on the subject of the Great DWP, every year their top bosses are going to ask the workers what they think of them by using an anonymous STAFF SURVEY which they encourage staff to complete. This year you can either complete a paper tick box survey or go to http://www.dwpsurvey.co.uk and use the password "dwpsurvey2003" (without the speech marks). I say YOU can, because ANYONE - even the local BUTCHER - with access to the web can join in the fun, and when you've finished it, you can do it all again. And again. And again...now that's what I call consultation!

Back at Falconcrest it’s steady as she goes with MAREK at the rudder and JOHN McCREADIE by his side. COLIN SAMBROOK has jumped ship opting for the happier climes of BALPA – where he can put his immense knowledge of the aviation industry to better use. And BERNIE WILLIAM’S bid to take over the National Moderate GROUP has died before it even got off the ground. His greedy eye has been on the DGS post ever since CHURCHYARD said he was going. Two major obstacles stand in BERNIE’S way – and the first is spelt BOYLE.

MARTIN is the MODERATI’s chosen man and the TOP JOCK now that BARRY’s fucked off and that’s what matters because the Mods have been a self-appointed oligarchy for the past 15 years. BERNIE was richly rewarded for his treachery by the JOCKOCRACY but he’s clearly got ideas above his station. He’s been muttering about the need for a membership-based organisation and an elected Moderati leadership which he believes would rally behind a man untainted by the BARRY brush. Though like them all he says nothing about policies because apart from self-preservation, the MODs have none.

In any case the only people who could call such a convention are the JOCKS themselves or the three Moderati maidens on the NEC – now down to two as PAULINE is on maternity leave again. The fact that neither BERNIE nor JAZZA have a cat in hell’s chance of winning on the MODERATI ticket these days is another matter.

MoD NEWS

Rumblings out West where it appears the natives are stirring in sleepy Stalag BATH for the first time in decades and the tranquil existence of CHRIS ‘Diggler’ DANDO, has been disturbed. DIGGLER has long viewed MoD group PR as his personal fiefdom and publishes the notoriously bland and toadying quarterly ‘DEFENDER’ when not brooding in the hills of Bath at his Castle Foxhill stronghold.

The obese, sweaty one has recently found that the Bath Ensleigh branch has become something of a nuisance: the Admin and Allied grades branch which used to cover both sites was the bastion of SHEILA ‘Thatch’ TUTTY, ‘Moderate by appointment’, CPSA despot and fawning RAMSBLADDER lickspittle. However, now that she has been put out to grass, gangling LUNITY disciple CHRIS ‘Windy’ GALE is Chairperson of the unified Ensleigh branch.

Brilliantly suppressed by the festering presence of TUTTY until last year, GALE has now spread his wings and not content with standing in the MoD Group elections (where to much relief in the MODERATI camp he lost out by one vote) he now seems intent on turning Ensleigh into Little Moscow. A motley crew of TROTS - henchmen of WINDY, have got onto the BEC largely due to apathy, and the previously dormant branch is now redder than the average post box. LUNITY membership is said to have doubled. TUTTY must be spinning in her retirement grave.

GALE’s first big stunt was to get the branch to nominate the LUNITY/DUMOCRAT slate for the NEC elections, thought to be the first time the branch had expressed any interest in years. Branch members and local management alike are somewhat bemused by the new found activism, whilst DANDO (who has crossed swords with WINDY previously - or so legend has it) is left scratching his head about how to deal with the irritating little OIK. GALE for his part apparently thinks the profusely damp shirted DANDO is well past his sell-by date.

GALE is less than happy with DANDO in any case since DANDO failed to publish any details of his next stunt, a meeting WINDY organised for his branch where President JANICE GODRICH was the main attraction. Since it made the local press, GALE was hoping for at least a photo with the imposing fellow Trot GODRICH, but the recent largactyl laced edition of DEFENDER was bare, much to GALE’s chagrin.

At MoD Group Conference a tired and emotional GALE was heard breaking wind and telling anyone who would listen about the coming RED DAWN whilst championing MAREK and GODRICH.

GALE has stirred more shit than a big stick, which has caused the politically cautious if well connected DANDO no end of embarrassment. Whilst details remain sketchy it appears that GALE’s latest stunt was to send an ill-advised and whining letter to one of the MoD’s propaganda sheets whose less than impressed editor promptly bent DANDO’s ear. Apart from stepping on DANDO’s personal cabbage patch this also made it look like DANDO was resting on his laurels and not fighting the good fight. Agents at Castle Foxhill say an incandescent DIGGLER tried rousing the somnolent MoD Group Supremo ‘Dirty Dick’ DE LANGE who only made some grumbling noises, so the profusely perspiring DANDO was forced to expend no little effort suppressing GALE and pointing out the error of his ways before calling his management chums to say all was well. It appears that on this occasion GALE backed down but remains unrepentant.

More trouble it seems isn’t far away as GALE and DANDO contemplate each other from the hills on either side of Bath like a couple of angry stags on the eve of the rutting season.

YOU COULDN'T MAKE IT UP DEPARTMENT

A new chair for Janice? Nope. It's a PCS recruitment trinket. Shown actual size, you rest your mobile phone on it, presumably when not in use. A useful accessory for the busy Rep. Call your Regional Office or Falconcrest for supplies.