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MAGAZINE - WINTER 1992

ROUND AND ABOUT
by Judas Iscariot

The high spot of the autumn season had to be PETER THOMASON'S farewell bash at Falconcrest. Hundreds of freeloaders packed the fourth floor suite to drink themselves silly at he great man's expense. PFL officers demolished plate-loads of food and attacked the whisky with vigour. AMANDA had forgotten to call In PAT MANTLE to record the happy scenes for RED TAPE and posterity, but she was almost reduced to tears by the drunken BRONCO, who was demanding money with menaces for the photos he had taken with his Instamatic. She grudgingly agreed in the end after the Intervention of THUGGAN but needless to say, when the snaps were developed they were all over-exposed.

It was almost an entirely BL 84 do - BARRY and MARION were abroad but two token MODERATES, WRIGLEY and AMANDA were invited, to balance the two Trots, McVICCAR and ADAMS who were skulking around. McVICCAR spent most of his time in deep conversation with ANN JARVIS, BL 84's rising star. They had previously spent an hour plotting in the FALCON, the pub by Falconcrest favoured by full-timers and claimants alike, no doubt discussing how they could foist the faintly ludicrous ASTBURY on an unsuspecting public.

Though Big John ELLIS was there, on the lookout for free booze and punters for his classic cars business, the presentation was given by CAMPBELL. FRANK, who has enlisted the support of RED TAPE in his bid to become General Secretary, was eager to pose as the natural successor to THOMASON in BL 84. He is getting increasingly bitter. He spent most of last year in a futile effort to strike a deal with the MODERATES. Now he is going along with a MENDICANT plan which, if it succeeds, will destroy his own power base.

So far the Trot plan has gone forward without too much of a hitch. At the BL 84 conference the JARVIS faction won agreement in principle for the ASTBURY maneuver, though the sterling efforts of ROY LEWIS and his cronies ensured that the question of the vice-presidents, which tine TROTS wanted shared out - i.e. one for JARVIS and one for them, remained on the table as did the share out for the NEC slate.

Of course, it was obvious to everyone apart from poor old ALBERT that he hasn't got a prayer of winning the Presidency. Which is why JARVIS won't touch it with a barge pole. But if their plans, now blessed by the SOCIALIST WANKERS at their own dreary BL Conference succeed, they can decisively split BL 84 and take over the rump JARVIS faction to boot.

Their plan for left 'unity' is simply a return to the pre-84 system of a one-person one-vote national conference which because of their superior organisation can ensure permanent TROT dominance, as it did in the past. Particularly if the move to kick the CHARLATANS out of BL 84 led by the DE Yorkshire Soviet gains more momentum.

MENDICANT is also launching a charm offensive. A suitably grovelling apology is winging its way to RAMSBLADDER following their injudicious remarks in the BL rag. And at this years TUC Conference, they did join the walk-out with SCARGILL when the CBI boss got to the rostrum, but diplomatically told MARION that they were just sneaking out to have a cuppa.

Meanwhile back at the ranch, all is not well. Our sterling new Treasurer, ace accountant KEITH WHO is now not the most popular man at FALCONCREST following his investigation of the 'disturbance allowances' paid out to full-timers as bunce to compensate them if they are relocated. MILLS is the first General Treasurer to have written to the INLAND REVENUE giving them details of the payments, which in some instances has amounted to thousands of pounds. For example BERNIE WILLIAMS is now facing five years back tax on his wonga.

All is not well at NUCPS either. It seems that the financial crisis is worse than even we previously suspected and the union could literally go broke unless another merger is found and quickly. Now all eyes are on MSF, which is at the same time making eyes at the TGWU. Whether anything will come of it remains to he seen, but given that the TGWU is focusing on a mega-merger with the GMB, NUCPS could be left holding the baby. LESLIE, of course will have retired by then.

And within NUCPS the Secret Left has suffered a further split within its ranks. NICK WRIGHT & Co. have broken with STRAIGHT LEFT and their shadowy mentor FERGUS NICHOLSON to form the equally mysterious COMMUNIST LIAISON GROUP, though with whom it will actually liaise you may well ask.

At least BL 84's problems are more mundane. They have yet to find a new name for themselves. Last year, their conference agreed to drop 'BL'84' but no one could think of a better label for the old has-beens. A lack of imagination not matched by the CHARLATANS. Aware of the impending witch-hunt, they are about to re-group as the 'Anti-Militant Alliance'.

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Departmental Computer Maintenance and troubleshooting

I: Approach the problem machine in a confident manner. Let it think that you don't care if it works or not. Like dogs, computers can smell fear.

2: Always act as though you know what to do. Never let the machine know you're baffled or it will only try harder.

3: Always be ready for a machine to start working of its own accord. Do something as soon as you reach the machine and always have a hand touching some part of it. This is because you want to be able to say something like, "There! I thought that would work!" if it suddenly starts working.

4: Wave the reference manual at the machine. If you don't have one, use any technical manual you have available. This has the effect of invoking spirits friendly to your cause and may convince the machine to give up without a struggle.

5: Continuing the black magic, recite Ohm's law to the machine. It may add to your arsenal if you learn to say it backwards - it can't hurt.

6: Try percussive maintenance. This involves gently lifting the uncooperative device about
100mm above the desk as though looking for something underneath. You then suddenly drop the beast. This often completely fixes the fault. Scientists are divided over whether the shock knocks something back into place or just frightens the machine. Whichever, remember to say something suitable about "needing to know just the right way to do that!"

7: If the item is relatively untraceable (such as a printer that other departments also have) do one of the following:

a) Arrange to borrow a working machine from the other department 'for operational comparison' and during the test, swap yours for theirs. Pretend that yours is still broken for a day or so until they get theirs fixed, or if in a hurry put a blown fuse in your broken machine before you give it to them so that they don't realise it has an identical fault.

b) Get in early in the morning and simply swap your broken machine with a working model in a different department. If there's a danger that serial numbers are kept somewhere, make sure you've swapped all of your machines long before they break. Thai way when you swap them back after yours breaks, you now have the one you should have and no one can point the finger.


8: If all else fails, try bribing the machine with: a good clean; a new ribbon; a hard disk cleanup; sex with another machine, an extra 10 volts of mains voltage.

9: If none of the above works, consider taking out a contract on the machine. £50 slipped to the office cleaner will usually arrange a suitable 'accident' such as falling down the stairs or into the fish tank in the reception area.

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On 4th August 1992 Rod Bacon wrote to the General Secretary, Barry Reamsbottom, on a matter of extreme importance, his letter and the reply follow.

Dear Barry,

Thank you for your letter dated 24.7.92. Would it be considered discourteous of me to suggest that we stop sending scolding letters to each other? I am sure that we have better things to do with our limited time.

In answer to your letter, however, Hackney and Tower Hamlets Branch did not organist the meeting on Name Badges; neither did we issue the leaflet. We were approached to sponsor the meeting. As the meeting was in line with CPSA Conference and DSS section policy, the Branch Committee, (which consists of people from various political points of view), agreed unanimously to support the meeting.

I spoke at the meeting, in a personal capacity, and stated that we should ensure that no member of staff is forced, in our branches to wear a name badge, as per section policy. If a situation arose in which compulsion was about to take place, the branch should immediately contact section office, as per section policy. It was felt that given the experience in DE, Branches should put pressure on DSS Section Executive Committee to ensure that section policy is carried out.

There is nothing in the CPSA Constitution, which forbids a branch to call a meeting of members to support and pursue the national policy of the union.

In Hackney & Tower Hamlets, Management have not yet forced the issue on name badges. This is, however, likely to happen. We, along with other branches of both CPSA & NUCPS want to be prepared for this eventuality, in order that we are organised to approach the Section Disputes Committee and the National Disputes Committee.

I am surprised that the member who complained to you did not approach myself as well. If he/she had done, I am sure that he/she would have had their questions answered in a way that would have settled their uneasiness.

I am told that the member concerned is probably Mr. Roy Lewis, although I admit that I have no proof of this. Perhaps you could ask the member to get in touch with me. If it is Mr Lewis, however, I would be very surprised as he is involved in a publication which regularly uses the CPSA logo and regularly contravenes Rule 2.1g of the National Constitution. Indeed, I have seen photographs of yourself promoting this publication. No doubt you thought it was a laugh but now that you are General Secretary of the CPSA, you should realize that a large number of women, gay and black members of your union have found the PFL pamphlets to be offensive. Perhaps you might like to have a word with Mr. Lewis about this, even if he was not the person who complained to you about the legitimate name badges meeting.

Finally, our branch did not pay any money towards the cost of the meeting or towards the publicity material. If I wished to hold a meeting that had the intention of creating policy rather than following existing policy, I would do it under the auspices of the political group to which I belong, which happens to be the Socialist Caucus, I am happy to relate, however, that the meeting on name badges did not come under this category, as members from both unions and all political points of view merely wished to promote the existing policy on name badges.

Yours sincerely,

Rod Bacon

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Mr Rod Bacon 13 August 1992
Branch Secretary
OPSA
DSS
17 Sylvester Road
LONDON EB

Dear Rod

Thank you for your letter of 4 August. I will do my best not to
make this sound like a scolding letter, however, I must say that
your explanation of the unofficial meeting about name badges on
the 20 July as being merely a gathering of branches discussing
ways of supporting conference policy is somewhat disingenuous.

As you will know, we have a structure in the union for co-
ordinating views across branches on issues such as this. It is
that structure that you should have used rather than continue what
seems to have been the policy of the Broad Left for some time,
namely to operate as a union within a union. For obvious reasons
it would be wrong for me to confirm or deny your allegation that
Roy Lewis is the member who complained. In any case this meeting
was advertised in the Socialist Worker newspaper, so it was hardly
a secret requiring somebody like Mr Lewis to expose it

However, I must reject entirely your charge that the Popular Front
Bulletin uses CPSA’s logo. This is not the case. As to your
comments that I should realise as general secretary that “a large
number of women, gay and black members of the union have found the
PFL pamplets to be offensive”, you do not provide any details of
who this large number of members is, where they are located, and
how many have complained to you. I doubt very much that you could
provide any detailed evidence. I dare say that the majority of
your small unrepresentative faction find the PFL pamplets
offensive but as in most things they are in a minority. It has
been my experience that the vast majority of members have a sense
of humour which is why they don’t want to join small, humourless
cliques like the Socialist Caucus.

Yours sincerely

General Secretary

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IT CAN'T BE TRUE....

that whilst "Scoop" FINKELSTEIN and Research Supremo HERNANDEZ flew the CPSA flag at a CCSU Press Conference on the MARKET TESTING fiasco during TUC week, RAMSBLADDER and THE BLESSED MARION thankfully got their priorities straight and instead wined and dined at the expense of nuclear polluters NIREX...

that COUNT KOWLASKI, whose hopes of rehabilitation - following a summer on the golf course on full facility time - rose briefly after BOIL's elevation to take most of SKIPPY'S workload off her, is now sulking having been told he has two chances of landing the coveted JOCK OFFICER post - fat and none...

that when little-known sheepshagger HOWIE OLIVER - under pressure from the TAFFIA - dropped out of the one-horse race for the TAFF job in the Summer, WHOHE included in his letter of withdrawal the demand that RAMSBLADDER give the sinecure to his old mate EVANS..

that DNS nonentity MALCOLM BOWES - formerly addressed as "Dozey Bowsey" - is now known by fellow Modr8s, who refuse to share a room with him, as "Animal" due to his revolting personal habits
- which allegedly include rising in the small hours to relieve himself in the fireplace of his hotel room...

that having briefly visited his office for a tip between pissups with MANAGEMENT and NUCPS, a sozzled LEECH left his house keys in his desk and, on arrival at Norwood Junction at midnight, had to rouse a slumbering COLLINS to beg a floor for the night...

that the only reason the thinning (and hungover) ranks' of delegates to EL84 CONFERENCE carried SCREECH's pathetic "paper" covering the NEC's backs for the PAY sell-out, was the fear that if they didn't, the pissed idiot might actually turn up and present the wretched thing...

that 'the catastrophic prospect of a joint TROT/EL'84 assault on the pinnacles of power next year was only averted by COUNCILLOR SAMUEL being threatened with violence by BOIL and WILLIAMS if he made a move for his train to Edinburgh before the vote...

that, following the decision of EL'84 to extort sponduliks on a "sliding scale" according to grade in return for the dubious privilege of being on their list, ASTBURY will single-handedly pay off the debts which have mounted up since the withdrawal of MOSCOW GOLD...

____________________________________________________________________________

Miners Rally Quotes, 26 October:

1. Miner to RCP member selling "the next step"; "What's tha know
about miners, or pits?"
tns seller; "What's that got to do with it?"

2. Demonstrator during Basil Hume's speech; "Never mind that,
Just tell us how to walk on water" (Hyde Park was waterlogged).

3, NUCPS Quote; "Does Dave Kowalski ever look wide awake?" (Steve
Hughes, ODA)

____________________________________________________________________________

NEWS FROM THE SMOKE FILLED ROOMS
by Barrabas

CHANCELLOR LAMONTS announcement that the hated 1992 PAY AGREEMENT is to be suspended- a mere five months after BRUNO conned us all into accepting it - will delight the TROTSKYIST HORDES, who see all Agreements as barriers to the Revolution and greatly embarrass the MODR8s, who had been planning a triumphant re-election campaign financed by TORY largesse.

Although RAMSBLADDER boast that he has been promised a "special deal" by the Treasury to avoid the otherwise inevitable (and inevitably doomed) strike action, this is unlikely to appease his SPARTIST opponents. They should, however, beware the temptation to rejoice prematurely; our glorious leaders knowledge of who does what with whom in Ito corridors of power may yet prove a more useful bargaining point than all McVICCARs rhetoric..

The first meeting of the now TROT DSS SEC - finally declared elected with an increased majority over their incompetent CHARLATAN opponents - showed that the combined brainpower a-f the assembled SPARTS has not been increased by their years in opposition. Carefully laid plans to replace disgraced DTUS collaborator McGOWAN McCABE with puppets of the new regime (including MRS CAWKWELL) floundered when BRUMMIE DAVE announced that RAMSBLADDERs edict that candidates must confirm willingness to stand in the NEC-enforced re-run, applied to candidates for DTUS - and HARRY CORBETT'S oversight of this blindingly obvious connection meant the CELTIC LOUTS remained in office! As the manifest logic of this defeated the TROTS best brains (?), a significant increase in the income of the CAWKWELL household is not anticipated in the coming financial year..

 

WHAT ON EARTH IS HAPPENING IN SIR WOYS BRANCH?


________________________________________________________________________________


______________________________________________________________________________

NOW WE'RE CLEANING WINDOWS

 

Leslie got the pay deal through
Said its good enough
You must do what you have to do
When the goings tough

Life is strange Life is dear
CPSA got money here
We've got no cash to buy a beer
Now we're cleaning winders

The NEC cannot decide
The lack of money they cannot hide
There's just no bread they can provide
Now we've cleaning winders

Tommy's growing grey we hear
The future's black Lamont made clear
4.1 with strings - no fear
Now we're cleaning winders

Undy* shows his great dislike
calling members out on strike
they will tell him 'On yer bike?'
Now we've cleaning winders

 

with apologies to the late George Formby
*believed to be our earliest reference to James Undy

THE WIT & WISDOM OF TONY ROUSE

'I'm recommending common sense Steve' I'll tell you what that is after the meeting.'

'Did you do that Red Tape yourself Amanda? - Rouse
'Yes' - Funglestein
'Bloody awful isn't it' - Rouse

AND THE REST


If Chris Baugh ever goes on Mastermind, his speciality will be the blindingly obvious. Ramsbladder

One doesn't read the papers but sometimes one is clairvoyant. Marion

You're a wimp. You can't even fart (Pause) I take that back - you can. Dave Allen to Count Kowalski

I have it on exceedingly good authority that you had Liz Edge in the pub last night. Riki Wigley
Perfectly True Frank Campbell

I'd like to nominate Trefor, and I'm sure if you ask him, he'll nominate me Windy Miller

______________________________________________________________________________

THE VICTORY PRESS Printed on Departmental Paper, by Departmental machines in facility time.

FROM PALESTINE TO PERU! SOUTH KOREA TO FALCONCREST
ONE STRUGGLE! ONE FIGHT! REVOLUTION UNTIL VICTORY!