THE POPULAR FRONT FOR THE LIBERATION OF CPSA
FREEDOM! UNITY! SOCIALISM!
REVOLUTION UNTIL VICTORY!
MAGAZINE - SUMMER 1990
FILLS FROM THE SMOKED ROOMS
Unable to forgive the displays of honesty, guts and sheer stupidity displayed by Skippy when, unable to support A-Man-Dear Funglestone being imposed as her Deputy, she argued against the favoured daughter's appointment (on the totally unreasonably grounds that A-Man-Dear Funglestone was not up to the job). Die Fuhress has now ensured that the GPC will not have the value of `uncontrollable professional advice' which might deflect them from their predetermined path. Skippy had indicated a reluctance to make a recommendation for anyone, on the perfectly reasonable grounds that such a recommendation would ensure they didn't get it.
However, things might have got a little more complicated, since, due to the rapid exit of the Lenin-badge sporting cadre from CCSU (imposed by Ellis on the O & E Department as a short-stay ANO), there had to be two appointments made on the same day.
Tension rose during the selection process as it became difficult for GPC poodles to remember which of the other eight candidates they were supposed to choose - since only one member of the National MODR8 Group had actually applied!!
The question remains though - why did Sister Kenefek (ex-CCSU) go? Were two days in the close company of A-Man-Dear Funglestone as much as a body could be expected to stand? Or was it merely that she thought she'd plumped for a cushy number and was upset to find that she'd have to actually work with members (perish the thought) in Met. Police and DTI Sections. Alas even PFLCPSA is unlikely to elicit the truth to that one!!
Meanwhile Alasdair Steane found the DWO interview the frustrating end to a frustrating year. when Alastair McRae went off to FIFE District Council, leaving a vacancy for DHSS Section Vice Chair, Steane who fancies moving on from his sinecure at DTUS threw his hat in the ring for the Ex-left 84 nominations. Hit by the steamroller of the Hanson machine, he contemplated going for the consolation prize of the Assistant Secretary post to be vacated by Hanson, but was persuaded that it was stitched. He then went skating with Elaine and the kids.
They all enjoyed themselves so much that when he broke his leg doing a double axel they didn't notice until two hours later when a message over the tannoy summoned Elaine to collect him from the hospital. Finally he hobbled to the interview for the ANO job, only to find that the second ANO post had gone to his TUS Deputy.
Meanwhile, an iron curtain of silence has descended over events at the Bored Left jamboree in Liverpool. While it is know that the attendance was down by a third over past years to about 160, enabling Mendicant to continue their purge against the Socialist Carcase - latest victim Steve Battlemuch - purged from all his jobs in DHSS. Alleged quotes from Mendicant Fuhrer Boff that "Frank Bonner has been a great disappointment" can easily be believed, but who could believe the allegations of Interfactional Fisticuffs involving the devoutly pacific McLoughlin waving a chair over his head. Incidentally, at time of writing McLoughlin is conducting a deep review of his future: should he stay in DHSS and get sacked as soon as the Agency is set up, or take the job he's been offered by Hackney Council?
It is widely rumoured incidentally, that Bored Left membership is down below 400. Meanwhile, the war of the bestial factions continues. Paul Beachcroft (Bored Left) made the mistake of inviting John Ellis to his AGM, and then moving 78 previously unnotified motions from the chair declaring them all carried. Needless to say, his AGM was ruled out of order. It's nice to know the Bored Left have picked the right constitutional expert to replace mendicant Harriet Stevens on the National Standing Orders Committee!
Meanwhile, at Department of Social Security HQ AGM, while B Leftovers swept the Board in the elections, Bored Stiff wreckers ensured that it took 1 hr 10mins to adopt Standing Orders, no serious business was conducted, as the Trots turned the lights out during retiring Branch Secretary Mary Heaton' s 3 hour valedictory address.
At Newcastle Central Office meanwhile, under the firm but kind fatherly guidance of Saint Bernardo, the Trots got a right stuffing! It all indicates that fascinating things will happen if and when, they actually elect some Branch Officers, - confidently expected in 1996. Meanwhile, an interesting dossier on LCD activists has fallen into the hands of the PFLCPSA; commenting on levels of competence, degrees of internal feuding (particularly amongst the 5 MODR8's in the Section) it is a damning indictment of that Section. Non-publication can be ensured by the delivery of large bundles of used fivers to the usual place. Similar dossiers on other Sections would be welcomed.
The Wit and Wisdom of Clifford Garbutt (Grade 7)
The Wisdom and Wit of Chris McDonald (Grade 6)
SuperTrousers in the South Atlantic
A SHAGGY SHEEP STORY
The "Living legend" of CPSA, Reg Williams, soon to depart for the land of his fathers, was at his most garrulous, and soon started to tell the assembled drunk's about his misspent youth in valley's. This is normally the signal for a mass attack of collective bladder trouble, but for those unlucky enough to be trapped by the diminutive Welshman, a truly remarkable yarn was told.
It seems that life was tough up in the Llllllllllannnngarcbbhgogoglth valley back in the 1860's. To make matters worse there was a distinct lack of eligible, and willing, females to ease the woes of the young Reg and his "butties", at least of the human variety that is. For when the cider flowed in the valley, so did thoughts of Blodwyn, the woolly back of his dreams.
It was on one such night that the pubescent windbag and his chums decided to take their courage in both hands, and venture forth into the night in search of illicit pleasure. Purposefully they strode up the valley, the tension unbearable as they sought out their quarry, until they came to the local red light district, the farm of Evans the Sheep. With only the light of a red lamp to guide them, they sought out Blodwyn from amongst the assembled throng in order to quench their immoral desires.
Unfortunately none of the assembled "Men of Harlech" were able to catch her for three hours, by which time they were far too knackered to do anything about it. And thus was the Young Williams saved from a life of infamy, and was able to go to Chapel with a clear conscience.
As you can probably imagine this story was greeted with horror by the massed ranks of young, thrusting, welsh boyos lurching drunkenly around the bar, who had for years been trying to live down the title of "sheep shagger". And thus it was that Jeff "Shadwell" Evans and Peter Baker were deputised by the Welsh Office high Druid, Howie Oliver, to uphold the honour of Wales, by proving Their manhood with the local English maidens.
This they did to such effect that complaints were received from fellow delegates the next day, concerning the wrestling and bleating noises heard all night long. Needless to say the Assembly Chair, Phil "Rutting" Rogers, took a dim view of this attack on his prerogative, and has asked that a Vet be provided for the next meeting, so that the Welsh can bring their "Girlfriends" with them next time.
I enclose for your use a set of Guidance Notes which outlines the procedure for arranging a One-Day Course of any type by the ACC. You will note that, in order to allow the Organisation S Education `Department sufficient time to circulate details of your course request to lay members of the NEC, we would normally require at least six weeks notice of a course. However, on the assumption that you will wish to hold the NEC sanctioned Agency Workshop on the normal basis, and using National materials and tutors, I will attempt to meet your proposed date of 1st February.
In relation to finance for the Course, the Organisation & Education Department always takes complete responsibility for expenditures expended in relation to courses which are run under the auspices of the National Education Programme. Therefore, the tutors who agree to run the National Agency Workshop for your ACC will be supplied with an imprest from which travelling expenses and subsistence of £2.00 per student can be drawn.
Finally, I am enclosing for your reference, a copy of Paras 19 and 20 of the National Facilities Agreement. Under its terms you will see that accredited representatives are allowed five or ten days special leave for training purposes (Para 19): those wishing to become representatives can also apply for special leave for training purposes (Para 20), although experience varies on the interpretation laid upon this by local managements.
Branch Secretaries will need to seek special leave from the local managements using the Facilities Agreement. In order that I can go ahead and make the necessary arrangements for this Workshop, I would appreciate your urgent telephone confirmation that the proposed agenda contained within your letter will be withdrawn, and that the event will proceed on the basis of the Nationally agreed materials.
If I am not available please speak to Carole Speight, to whom I am copying this correspondence.
The General Secretary's circular to which you refer concentrates instead on an interpretation of informative events organised by other bodies of CPSA members. As such we will be continuing as planned with the agreed agenda. Notification has been issued to all branches within the area outlining the format of the workshop. A pack will be prepared for all those attending incorporating CPSA policy, information from the pack prepared for the seminar for Section Representatives and extracts from draft framework agreements.
As stated in my previous letter, the workshop will take place on 1 February 1990 beginning at 9.00. The venue will be Room 241 at the Home Office, Queen Anne's Gate, (opposite St James' Park tube). I would be grateful if you would let me know the name of the NEC speaker as soon as possible.
Finally, you did not enclose the two paragraphs from the National Facilities Agreement which were mentioned in your letter. Although your quotes were sufficient I would find a copy useful and would be grateful if you would forward one. Thank you for your assistance.
Yours PHIL MARSTON
On reading the minutes of the meeting, I was satisfied that the GPC proposed to act in accordance with this principle, since they record that the draft agenda, compiled by yourself, would be submitted to the Head of O&ED for her endorsement.
When our proposals were rejected however, I would have expected that Val Stansfields offer to run a workshop based on the national agenda would have been accepted, I was therefore dismayed by the approach you took in your reply, which suggested for the first time that the GPC had considered bypassing the national body. This was not merely because I have made it clear on several occasions that I will not countenance this ACC setting itself outside the CPSAs rules - I am aware that some on the GPC view the rules as an abstract concept - but because it seemed clear to me that the course you were taking was bound to unnecessarily jeopardise the future of the workshop itself.
Although I spoke to Val Stansfield on Tuesday in an attempt to salvage the situation, she had already written to you instructing you to cancel the arrangements for the workshop, and it is not now possible for the NEC to provide tutors for the advertised date. We will therefore have to inform applicants that the workshop will not now go ahead as planned and that they will be given `first refusal" when it is rescheduled.
I would be grateful if you could do so, and also contact O&ED to make arrangements for the course to be rescheduled as soon as possible. As Chairperson I am very angry that the first activity organised by this ACC in over two year; has been mishandled.
I am well aware that certain factions wish to use CPSA resources to give their own interpretation of what should be done about Agencies in opposition to that of the National Executive Committee. Naively perhaps, I had imagined that the experience of the West Midlands ACC might have disabused them of that notion.
I suggest nonetheless that if this Area Committee wishes to retain any credibility with its Branches, we leave out the playground politics in future.
As you will see, the agenda includes provision for a NEC speaker and for a speaker from an area of the Union with direct experience of the effects of Agency status. In addition I have made it clear that we would like the NEC speaker to remain at the workshop throughout the day.
This and the benefits of financial backing from the Union nationally were the reasons why I forwarded the agenda to Val Stansfield. When Val suggested that we instead take on board the National Seminar, I was unable to agree because the GPC had discussed and decided against its use. Indeed we were, and still are, completely unaware of the contents of the seminar. Personally I believe that I have no right to overturn a democratic decision made by the GPC. This is called accountability.
Nowhere in Val Stansfield's letter of 18 December does it say that we have a stark choice of the NEC seminar or no event at all. You state that it seemed clear at this stage that my actions were bound to jeopardise the workshop. To me there had been no such suggestion and certainly no indication that by holding an educational workshop for members we were `setting ourselves outside the CPSA's rules.' I suspect this is because I have no personal experience of autocratic misuse of the constitution.
I would point out that I do not see the rules as an `abstract concept'. I do see rules as being to ensure the Union works in the interests of its members, ie the Union itself, and I fail to comprehend how providing education to members can come into conflict with this principle.
Your final paragraph contains only one accuracy: that this is the first event organised by the ACC in many years. I have put a great deal of effort into organising the event including preparation of a pack of practical information relating to existing and proposed agencies. As such it is I who have greatest cause to be extremely angry that my efforts and those of Colin Dicker should be undermined by those who have neither knowledge of nor, apparently, interest in the content of the workshop which would be attended by at least 30 representatives from a minimum of seven Departments. The only mishandling has been by people who wish to sabotage an event which would prove useful in educating members on a subject which involves major implications for all Civil Servants.
Finally your letter degenerates into a meaningless. tirade about `certain factions'. My interpretation of what should be done about Agencies and apparently that of the GPC, is identical to that outlined in CPSA conference policy. If this is at odds with the views of the NEC then it is they who are at fault and not I. Your reference to the workshop run by Birmingham CCSU is merely a red herring. That was a national event run at a weekend. Ours is a workshop for members, within our area held with facility time provided by Management. I myself attended the Birmingham event and found it extremely informative and educational. Previously I had been unaware of the important developments taking place in several other Departments.
Your infantile phrase `playground politics' is the first mention of politics in all of the exchanges so far. Doubtless a workshop would include members exchanging views, including political views, about why the question of Agencies arose and how best to tackle it. Neither you nor I should be able or wish to stifle such open debate which can only be of benefit to all.
Incidentally the only way to retain credibility with Branches is for the ACC to work on behalf of members by the issue of material and holding worthwhile schools. I believe the workshop should go ahead however I have no doubt that certain opponents of the workshop would not hesitate to collaborate with Management to withdraw facility time.
Such is the mentality of people who would prefer to resort to bureaucratic manoeuvres rather than encourage open discussion. For this reason and this alone I suspect the Workshop will have to be cancelled and should the GPC agree this course of action I will inform people as necessary. We will need to convene an immediate emergency GPC to decide this.
Yours for trade Unionism
1. I am the Chairperson of this Area Committee. The job of a Chairperson includes ensuring that the Rules of the Union are observed at all Limes.
2. Rule 20.2 of the CPSA Constitution defines the duties of Area Committees of the Union, and its definition clearly stipulates that "the duties of Aiea Co-Ordinating Committees shall be to co-ordinate and develop, under the control of the National Executive Committee, those activities ";
it goes on, "an ACC shall assist the National Organiser in the recruitment, education and maintenance of membership. From this it should be abundantly clear that the "democratic decision" of the GPC, not to run the National course - which you are so keen to defend - was not one which it was empowered to take. The members decide the Rules of this Union, you and I only have to abide by them, not necessarily like them. THAT is called accountability. That is why, also, I stand by my statement that the GPC appears to have decided to "set itself outside CPSA's Rules".
If you can provide me with an alternative interpretation of Rule 20.2 1 shall, in all humility, consider that I may be guilty of "autocratic misuse of the Constitution If you are unable to do so I shall have to consider that your judgment is too clouded by paranoid persecution fantasies, for me to be able to take such a charge seriously.
3. Your self-righteous bluster about the amount of work you have put in will not obscure the fact that, when the National Organiser rejected your proposed syllabus, she also made a perfectly reasonable offer to run the National syllabus on the date we had proposed. It is the rejection of that which has led to the workshop's postponement. Contrary to your accusation I am very interested in the contents of your syllabus; why don't you send me a copy?
However may I refer you to Rule 6.2. which states that "between meetings of delegate Conference the general management and control of the Association and the handling of the whole affairs shall be vested in".. not "Phil Marston of Home Office, Queen Anne's Gate" nor even "the GPC of London No 3 ACC".. but, yes, "the National Executive Committee"!
You are perfectly well aware that my reference to "certain factions" denotes the campaign run by the "broad left" within CPSA to attempt to force a particular interpretation of Conference policy on Agencies on the NEC. Far from being a "meaningless tirade" that part of my letter goes to the heart of the reasons for your behaviour and the attitude of the GPC; you would rather jeopardise this workshop and blame the NEC or the National Organiser, than just get on with running this Area Committee within the Rules of the Union.
I can call that worse things than "playground politics" if you find that phrase "infantile";how about "blatant Trotskyist sabotage"? You are aware by now from my letter of 23 January that I do not propose to call a GPC to discuss this. The National Organiser has taken the decision which your actions made inevitable and all we can do is respect that. I shall not rise to your bait concerning facilities, it is obvious for the reasons I have outlined that if the workshop goes ahead in the face of the decision of the National Organiser it will no longer be a CPSA School and Departments would not therefore make facilities available.
That point merely fuels my fears that you are becoming paranoid and I recommend either a nice long holiday or a consultation with a specialist before the condition becomes untreatable.
Yours in concern,
EAST AFRICAN NEWS
Upon being approached by a fellow participant in East African Affairs at the official thrash at conference, the tired and emotional yokel took his courage in both hands and headed into the night. This only being possible due to a desperate search by his repugnant stooge JONES to find a working condom machine, the yokel having been justifiably convinced that nobody would be interested in his peculiar nocturnal habits.
Meanwhile back at the CASA DEL ASSEMBLY the repulsive minder of that dedicated HORLICKS drinker ROB LEITCH, IAN RIVERS, was stalking the corridors of the hotel having given way to a seminar on Ugandan fly fishing and was desperately searching for a bed. Upon being informed that the RUTTING ROGERS was unlikely to be seen this side of Christmas he fell gratefully into the yokels bed, having first cleared out the pigs of course. The unfortunate RIVERS was then awoken sometime later by the desperate ROGERS with his `party' in tow demanding his bed and threatening the erstwhile minder with severe retribution. There followed some debate about the parentage of the YOKEL who being of brave country stock departed for the bathroom, only to reappear two hours later with his courage suitably fortified to finally convince the desperate RIVERS that his real interests lay in fly fishing after all.
Through all this the luckless OSSIE ROBERTS did pretend to slumber in the next bed, even whilst `DONKEY BOLLOCKS' and his companion were in heated discussion about the need for further penetration in the UGANDAN tourist industry. Some jealous lothario did then set off the fire alarm. The relieved ROBERTS plunged forth into the night along with the rest of the drunken rabble leaving the `RUTTING YOKEL' and friend to carry on with their debate.
The only other to ignore the call was the dreadful LEITCH who was in his usual horlicks stupor and oblivious to all, as his appalling conference bulletins proved. Upon returning to the scene of the crime ROBERTS manfully endured the relentless in depth probing until the small hours whereupon a conclusion to the meeting was called and a card vote taken (result to be announced as ROGERS has yet to find an abacus). Legal proceedings are expected. PHIL ROGERS is 92 and fading fast, all vitamin E donations gratefully received.
STALINISM - THE LAST BASTION?
Reports now coming in from the disputed Nagorno - Claphamuh territory in the troubled South West London Province of the E.E.C. suggest that one of the few remaining old-style ``peoples democracies" may be on the verge of collapse. The Management Party, who seized power following rigged elections in 1948, and who have ruled the territory every since using a combination of savage repression and unpaid informers have been thrown increasingly on the defensive as popular discontent, fuelled by successful revolts elsewhere in the Western Bloc, rapidly boils up into open rebellion.
First indications of the current unrest came with the so-called "Food Riots" of last April. Although no mention was made of the incident in the state-controlled Red Tapescu newspaper, it seems clear from smuggled despatches the patience of the citizens finally snapped after many years of interminable queuing for expensive but poor quality and sometimes even contaminated food. Staff at one of the "canteens" (communal feeding centres) narrowly escaped lynching and the day was only saved when the Management Party laid on an emergency airlift of supplies of chicken curry sandwiches, cold bacon and eggs and rock-hard "toast", all local delicacies.
Another cause of widespread resentment is the hated Internal Passport system. All outsiders employed in the region have to carry a special identity card without which they cannot gain access through the numerous electronic checkpoints. The dreaded "Securitate" Guards are always on hand to arrest, search and interrogate suspected dissidents.
A few weeks ago, the ailing, unpopular Party chief, Nicolae Brunoccu was reported to have suffered a serious accident and has not appeared in public since. Some sources consider that Brunoccu, may have faked the accident in order to gain time and prepare his escape: others, that he may have been deliberately immobilised by reformists in his own party anxious to hang on to power. Brunoccu has been "temporarily" succeeded by Pyotr Thompsonu who has a reputation as a comparative liberal. Thompsonu has promised a new spirit of openness and restructuring and hinted at democratic elections "very shortly", but if his reforms fail to deliver he could be ousted by Vladimir McVicu a notorious hard-liner.
At a stormy meeting of the central committee last week agreement was finally reached on a change of name form "Management Party" to "Staff Welfare and Guidance Party". Such moves are unlikely to satisfy many members of the Democratic Forum, an uneasy coalition of opposition groups. "A blatant piece of cynical electoralism" scoffed Kiril Boffu of the Revolutionary Workers Solidarity Party. Boffu, whose estimates his supporters as "tens of thousands" called for an immediate all-out general strike, and continued." The Management Party must be completely destroyed. We do not seek revenge - all we ask is that these brutal, fascist scoundrels are executed by firing squad after a fair trial lasting twenty minutes."
Dmitry Dugganu, of the Social-Democratic Charter 84 Faction, disagreed. "Let us not be too hasty, comrades. The old guard is on the run. I am sure there are some moderate elements within the Management Party with whom we can do business. Boffu is talking nonsense anyway: I know for a fact that he has only three supporters, whereas hundreds of thousands agree with me. A third spokesman, Jan Billiousu, took a different view again. "The claims made by both Boffu and Dugganu are ludicrous. I happen to know for a fact that they have only three supporters between them. Literally millions of working people are in complete agreement with the policies of my Liberal-Democratic Green Alliance, and we will certainly sweep the board if - I wean when - the elections are held.
Is the Opposition Forum too divided to take maximum advantage of the Management Party's disarray? Time alone will tell.
STOP PRESS: Brunoccu cornered in hospital bed, shouts "I do not recognise this court. I will only answer to the working class."
Conference 1990 will be a key year for the PFLCPSA. Every effort must be made to confound our enemies and advance to our glorious and predestined future. To that end ALL CADRES are instructed, and all supporters are requested to attend the Pre Conference Briefing Meeting The Smugglers Bar Bournemouth Conference Centre 7 pm Sunday 13 May To launch Forward Battle Group `Bruno' (Dedicated to the greatest, most inspired General Secretary we've got, wise guardian of the peoples rights, elder brother to the masses etc).