13 November, 2014

Current Marxist Works

Some idea of what a modern day Marxist Philosopher does can be illustrated by the following lists of papers, produced by Jim Schofield during the month of August 2014. It isn’t representative of the full range of topics addressed, reflecting not only his scientific specialisms and current political priorities, nor his contributions in Sculpture and Music, but it does show what an active Marxist philosopher is doing in daily producing original work.

Indeed, the simplest description of this writer’s activities would be “One paper, 1,500 words, a day, seven days a week”. Though, of course, they don’t all end in publication, at least, not immediately.
For, many pieces are seen as possible contributions to later, more comprehensive works, which will require research in various areas before they are ready for publication.

So, the first list concentrates upon current contributions produced in a single month that have already been, or will in the near future be, integrated into published works.
The second list, covering a period of about one year is of final publications in the form of contributions to General Issues or complete Special Issues of the SHAPE Journal, which is now in its sixth year, and has amounted to 61 Issues since its launch in 2009.

It is a unique publication, for it, as its name suggests, includes:-

Science, Holism, Abstraction, Philosophy & Emergence (or S.H.A.P.E.) as its contents.

This is a wholly free, Web-based Journal, and is supported by the SHAPE Blog for the usual kind of posts, and a Youtube SHAPE Channel for animations and videos. SHAPE Journal is unusual in the almost half of its Issues are Specials, in which several related papers upon a single topic are presented together, and these are useful as introductions to areas not normally evident in political Marxist publications. While others take the issues involved to much greater lengths and depth. Some idea will be demonstrated by the Special entitled The Theory of Emergences, which takes Revolutions to all aspects of Reality. And The Theory of the Double Slit, which is about the Crisis in Sub Atomic Physics and the confusing anomalies evident in the famed Double Slit Experiments. Other areas are covered from Mathematical Chaos to the Origin of Life, and even an extrapolation of Darwin’s Natural Selection to non-living developments.

Jim Schofield – August 2014

J. Schofield: Current Marxist Papers: August 2014

1 01/08/14 The Emergence of “Policeman Processes” 585

2 02/08/14 Resonances & Recursion in Pendulums 785

3 03/08/14 The Myth of Equation-Based Theories 3290

4 05/08/14 Abstracted Forms I: Quantitative 2083

5 10/08/14 Dialectics (possiblePANEL) 858

6. 11/08/14 Abstracted Forms II: Qualitative 1259

7. 13/08/14 Defeat the Tory Onslaught 641

8. 18/08/14 The Phoenix (from yjr flames) 3840

9 18/08/14 The Tasks of Marxism Today 2358

10. 18//08/14 Ecce Habilis (A sculptural symbol of Early Man) 400

11. 25./08/14 Following a Supernovae 402

12. 25/08/14 Synchronised Resonances & Recursions 910

13. 25/08/14 Zeno’s Paradoxes (possible PANEL) 387

14. 25/08/14 The Contradictory Bases in Science 1487

15. 26/08/14 Clean Hands Profit? 550

16. 28/08/14 To Be, or Not To Be? 1025

17. 30/08/14 Reality and Mind 975

TOTAL 21385

These were current efforts, and only rarely final works, ready for publication. Most are also notes, paragraphs or chapters intended for later, larger works. Also many concurrent corrections and additions to prior papers are not included here, and these probably compose around a third of the total output in any period.

To access the bulk of this author’s published writings, the easiest place is on the Web at the following sites:-

SHAPE Journal (61 issues) SHAPE Blog (250 posts)+ SHAPE Channel on Youtube (6 videos)

Or alternatively direct contact can be made with Jim Schofield - jim@bild-art.co.uk

Recent Issues of SHAPE Journal

June 2013 Wave/Particle Integration Special 20

June 2013 The Loka Sutta Spedial 21

July 2013 Marxism III Special 22

July 2013 Programming Today Issue 31

Aug 2013 The Evolution of Matter Special 23

Sept 2013 Rethinking Physics Issue 32

Dec 2013 The Holist Revolution Special 24

Jan 2014 The Logic of Change Issue 33

March 2014 Yves Couder’s Experiments Special 25
April 2014 Mathematical Chaos I Special 26

June 2014 Myths of Tegmark I Issue 34

July 2014 Analogistic Models I Special 27

Key Early Issues of SHAPE Journal

July 2010 The Theory of Emergences Special 1

Fec 2011 The Theory of the Double Slit Special 3

This paper was taken from the latest Special Issue of SHAPE (29, Work in Progress)

New Special Issue: Work in Progress

This Special is somewhat different to our usual offerings of this form in SHAPE Journal. It has a very different purpose! Indeed, the reader may well be immediately aware of its unfinished nature, and take issue with some of its note-like offerings. Good!

For this form is intended to encourage criticism and opposing contributions by other present day Marxists out there. SHAPE gets over 100 hits a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year, and an analysis of the topics accessed (on the SHAPE Blog for example) indicates that it is the philosophical works that are by far the most popular. There are readers of our sites in 120 countries (Sorry, 121 – someone in Guatemala added to the total today), and these include not only the usual “surfing” nations, such as the USA, but also an increasing number from Russia, Ukraine, Romania and many other ex-Soviet nations, as well as literally the whole of South and Central America, and recently France, Germany, Poland and Slovenia have arrived in significant numbers too.

But, when the usual outlets for other Marxists’ work are monitored, they are, to say the least, disappointing. What is needed is a new generation of serious and committed Marxist philosophers – constantly extending and deepening the Marxist View. And, they should be addressing the very areas where the non-Marxists are signally failing to make any real contributions.

This Special, therefore, hopes to get a response from them! Comments and even contributions are welcomed. And, as we don’t usually work within the usual Social Networking methods on the Internet, it is suggested that these should be sent direct to us by email: shape@bild-art.co.uk

If writers permit it, their contributions will be published in a Special Issue, (so say which country you are from), and if we get sufficient this could become a regular feature. None of contributor’s details will be given to anyone else! Use nom de plumes if you want to. This philosopher has written almost 650 papers over the last five years and could do with some help tackling these difficult questions!

Read issue

04 November, 2014

Empty Promises

The Failure of Idealist Physics
The propagation of Electromagnetic energy, across Space, will depend upon two indisputable things. First, it must be how it is produced, and second, how is it transported across that seemingly Empty Void?

The conception that pure, disembodied energy can cross totally Empty Space at a given speed is clearly impossible by any physical considerations, whatsoever, of its possible nature.

Even if you dispense with some kind of continuous medium or particulate carriers, you, somehow, have to deliver a pair of vectors with both magnitude and direction – one electrical and the other magnetic, actually also oscillating regularly (in absolutely Nothing) at a fixed frequency - and without having any material content themselves. What is actually oscillating, and thus containing energy must somehow move across empty space – But how?

To compound this felony we are asked to believe that such totally disembodied oscillations – “Pure Energy” was also, initially, the sole basis of absolutely everything in the Universe. It clearly isn’t true, is it?

Such a position is got away with, because those who now deal in these things are constrained, no longer, by Physical Reality: they have moved to more conducive climes, delivered by the World of Pure Form alone – or Ideality. For, there anything formally defined and self-consistent is always possible! 

Yet most scientists, and for several centuries, felt that they had to assume a space-filling continuous medium – The Ether, to make any sort of sense out of such phenomena. But, it was never detected, and physicists seemed to manage well enough on the formulae, which had been derived from real, extracted data. Maybe the Real World was actually driven by these Formal Imperatives?

Yet, the initial, suggested alternative was Newton’s Corpuscular Theory, so they then conceived of particulate gobbets of pure energy – Photons, as the actual individual bits of Radiation, acting somewhat like particles, but eventually being redefined as descrete gobbets of pure energy or Quanta.

The nature of such a pure, disembodied quantum of this energy is still physically unknown, though today’s physicists seem perfectly happy with an entirely formal equation-based description alone! Some tried to define wave-packets (myself included) but they certainly don’t fit the bill for many indisputable reasons. Interestingly, this “Pure Energy” can be described formally by mathematical forms, and this, to those who welcome an idealist stance upon Reality, was sufficient to “prove” their position was adequate.

But, what it actually does is to disprove such a stance as meaningless, not only by being in a pure form, but also by having absolutely no concrete substance too!

So, we are left with yet another impossible placeholder – the Photon.

It is somewhat remarkable because following a dissociation of material objects into pure electromagnetic energy, vast amounts of pure, disembodied energy have to be turned into Photons – what else? But, how many and how big will they be? They don’t have to be a single size, but each will consist of a single quantum, involving a single frequency, and a content of energy given by hν. (Where h is Planck’s Constant and ν is the frequency).

Something like this was confirmed by both Planck’s solution of the problem of Black Body radiation, and by Einstein’s explanation of the Photo Electric Effect, but exactly what the form of a Photon is, is still not known.

And, we must not forget interference!

It was easy to explain with extended waves (as in water and air), but how would descrete entities, like Photons, actually interfere? (Especially as ostensibly single Photons were being sent, one at a time, in the Double Slit experiments, act as if interference is happening!)

And, it seems, all the evidence is that such Photons can travel at the Speed of Light – impossible by any material object.

The fact that such ideas, plus appropriate equations, enable a great deal of useful things to be done, doesn’t make them the complete truth, of course, it merely means that there is enough Objective Content in these ideas to allow us to use them effectively in a set of conditions.

The Photon, as with every other concept that Mankind has “realised” and “released” from Reality, delivers only an analogistic model - containing more objective content than any other in this given area. And, as with every other man-devised concept, it will always have limits!

It will, as always happens, precipitate what Hegel saw as Dichotomous Pairs of contradictory conceptual products, associated with our inadequate, underlying assumptions of the nature of the Photon. It is unavoidable in the way that Man struggles to make sense of his world.

And, of course, we have already reached such a predicted impasse, once again, with Wave/Particle Duality – as clearly evidenced by the ill-famed Double Slit experiments.

The fact that “entities” can sometimes act like a particle, while in other circumstances acting like an extended wave, is a perfect example of this! These two ARE contradictory concepts, when applied to the same thing, and prove that the bases upon which we arrived at these ideas are essentially incorrect, and must be replaced!

Yet that still doesn’t happen because the principle driving imperatives are not to actually understand Reality, but merely to use a part of it to some required end. And, with such a standpoint, Man can live-with such Dichotomous Pairs, merely learning when to use one rather than the other.

But, of course, what totally ceases, with such a complete surrender, is the continuing development of our crucial Understanding! We just learn, instead, to juggle our imponderables in multiple ways, with the kind of qualities we value most – “Can we use it profitably?” But, there are still a few among us, to whom such a situation is intolerable.

To really make progress, we must understand more! We are aware of our limitations, but to give up and settle for contradictory variations upon what we know, will simply NOT do! The challenge, of a Dichotomous Pair, must be to transcend it by providing better assumptions, principles and bases.

This current crisis is NOT small!

For, the unresolved dilemmas have been continuing for almost a century, and the World is becoming ever more dangerous with such pragmatists in selfish charge! This situation will require new assumptions, and even a wholly new philosophical stance. We actually DO know what our problems are!

For, primarily, we believe in Plurality – the idealist notion that Reality is generated entirely from a collection of abstract, and eternal Natural Laws, which merely SUM in various, quantitatively-different mixes to deliver absolutely everything! But, this stance has a diametrically opposed alternative – termed Holism, which, in its materialist stance, rejects the idea of totally unchangeable Natural Laws, as well as such abstractions actually driving Reality.

We also know that the so-called Natural Laws are really just purely formal relations that can be encapsulated in mathematical equations. Clearly, this is also unacceptable as a basis for real understanding! For the belief that it is disembodied laws that are actually driving concrete Reality, is pure Idealism, as well as, being a contradictory factor in the long-assumed bases of Science. In fact, Materialism has effectively been abandoned in present-day Physics!

We actually know what is wrong, but as Zeno found out when he revealed crucial and similar Dichotomous Pairs – namely Continuity and Descreteness, some 2,500 years ago, to simply recognise and announce error is never enough! It actually took some 2,300 years for Zeno’s position to be taken further by Frederick Hegel, and yet another major step forward with Karl Marx’s transference of these gains, from Idealist Philosophy, into Materialism.

 To merely see the problem is never sufficient! Such contradictory concepts have to be irrefutably transcended, and that is a very different thing.

For, instead of addressing a one-off anomaly, it must involve a major transformation of the assumptions and premises involved. When this is achieved, it becomes immediately evident, for the revolution in the foundations of our Thinking then opens up new vistas and possibilities, previously hidden by our blinkered way of considering things.

And, there are places to start!

This researcher decided upon tackling the ill-famed Double Slit Experiments, and after a great deal of work upon the premises and assumptions involved, he did indeed find a better, materialist explanation, than what was universally proffered up to that point. The problem, though it had been involved from the very start of Science, came to its final impasse with the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory.

But, needless-to-say, no one turned a hair, when that suggested solution was published! More was necessary, and the Key Concept in the solution of the Double Slit anomalies was the inclusion of a substrate of particles – a 3D paving, of the whole of so-called Empty Space!

This certainly delivered a far superior analogistic model, but still did not cover absolutely everything. Clearly, the attention had to switch to delivering more on this proposed Paving of Space! The same sort of better explanation just had to be delivered that fully explained the Propagation of Electromagnetic Radiative Energy across Empty Space – not to mention the also amazing Action at a Distance too!

For, since Bohr and Heisenberg defeated Albert Einstein at the Solvay Conference in 1927, a whole Cosmology has been constructed based upon the Idealist Copenhagen stance. The problem of Empty Space certainly became the next battleground!

NOTE: Interestingly, even at this early stage, the consequences of a substrate throughout the Universe have proved to deliver many features very different to what is currently believed among present day cosmologists.

Everything from the Big Bang to the Red Shift and Inflation is called into question. An alternative Shell Universe concept has been suggested as a limit to electromagnetic propagation, keeping it only within a substrate-paved Universe, and a consequent Total Internal Reflection of radiation at the physical edge of the Universe, with all its consequences has also been investigated.

It would, indeed, transform all interpretations of what we see in the heavens!

29 October, 2014

Are Equations True?

One aspect of symbolic equations (representing what are thought of a Natural Laws) is how their unavoidably pluralist standpoint affects exactly what such things are! For, that view sees “Eternal Natural Laws” as a coming together of the natural factors involved to achieve their “summation” into another consequent Law. And this occurs without in any way changing those contributory components.

Thus Analysis is possible, with each level being separable into its components. And such a process is repeatable, level below level, down (presumably) to a final set of eternal, fundamental Laws. Every level, going upwards, is merely a non-modifying SUM! That is what Plurality means, and it is the never-even-mentioned simplifying basis for all of Science!

Now, what effect does this have upon the equations that are tailored to fit real world data?

Clearly, the un-modifiable factors are often brought together as summed terms in an overall Equation, describing the resultant Law. No factor is actually modified by their coming together. So, what can we therefore say about such an equation? It can only mean that the changing things within it must be the relative quantitative amounts of the various factors, for their qualitative natures are assumed to be sacrosanct!

What is covered by such an equation is therefore limited entirely to a situation in which NO Factors CHANGE qualitatively: it represents a stable situation, varying only in the amounts of the involved factors.

So, what happens when things do qualitatively change (as they most certainly do)?

This can only involve a switch to another Law, and the only role that the previous conception plays, is that a particular variable is earmarked as a “switch-indicator”, and when that variable exceeds a given threshold value, the switch to the other equation must be made. It indicates clearly what is wrong with Plurality: it just isn’t true!

We are permanently-wedded to the pluralistic stance, and its consequent approach, not only philosophically, but also technologically. For, we ensure that all situations to be investigated conform to a pluralist nature – and we do it by isolating, filtering, farming and controlling them to bring the resulting situation as close as possible to that desired state. We naturally kid ourselves that we are merely “revealing” the “natural, hidden state” by our tailoring, but that is not the case: we are suppressing the modifying inter-relations to bring the situation, unnaturally, to a state in which our pluralist, simplifying assumption hold.

Hence, we don’t find laws about totally unfettered Reality-as-is, but only situations forced into conforming to those ideas, and we call these sought-for, investigatable states – Stability!

Yet, we get away with it, because we ONLY use our equations in identically arranged circumstances to those we set up to extract them.

Now, there is an alternative view to Plurality, which is termed Holism! But, in this un-tailored view, there can be NO eternal Natural Laws. Indeed, all relations are produced by given circumstances, and will change, when the circumstances vary in any way.

Such a thing as an Equation of summed terms, that is unchanging does not represent Reality-as-is, but only forcibly stabilised situations, so though they can be used within such farmed Domains, they are NOT eternal, natural Laws. And, of course, the simplified and mechanistic, and also Reductionist view must be wrong!

Looking back at any classical Equation shows that is NOT what it claims to be - a generality, (that is universally) applicable, but, on the contrary, a particular rule, for use in highly constrained circumstances only. The hierarchy of Natural Laws falls to the ground: it is but a handy myth.

So, why is this important?

It means that our overall conceptions of Reality, and how we conceive of it, and subsequently try to understand it are WRONG! Equations lie as to the real natural properties of Reality. They are instead a set of rules for a technological assault upon Reality for purely pragmatic purposes.

Its significance philosophically is highly damaging, as is repeatedly proved in Modern Physics, where, based generally, upon these particular, pluralist laws, the most speculative nonsense is generated on everything from the Origin of the Universe to its inevitable demise.

Now, I will not pretend that attempting to do Science with a holistic perspective will be easy. It most certainly will not be! But, philosophically, and particularly with respect to Qualitative Changes and the Evolution of Reality, such a stance will be incomparably more real.

The problems arise, when real, natural (and un-farmable) situations have to be dealt with, but even there the Explanations achieved are vastly superior to those based entirely upon pluralist laws”.

Holistic explanations are not new. Indeed, before the advent of quantitative equations, there were remarkable cases of profound explanation, developed by holistic approaches in dealing with multiple factors that modified one another.

So, if anyone is wondering what a holistic approach might reveal, may I suggest Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species, V. Gordon Childe’s Man Makes Himself & What happened in History and literally anything on Thinking About Thought by Frederick Hegel. The most revolutionary gains in Science have been made by holistic scientists.

So, pluralist Science does not deal in “Whys?”, but in “Whats?” and “How much?”. It has become quantitative in absolutely everything! Indeed, this is so crucial in most of Science that it has been turned into a purely quantitative subject. More and more qualitative explanations are not addressed. Now, that isn’t Science!

Such a restriction is demanded by a very different imperative, which must have guaranteed production (or prediction) as its most important outcome. And, that can be achieved by current pluralist methods. But, it IS a transformation of what Science always was from its inception, when both description plus production and explanation were given parallel status.

It has now been changed into leaning exclusively towards production and hence Technology. Indeed, even unavoidable qualitative changes are only addressed via thresholds, and do NOT deliver “Why?” at all!

So, to return to the title of this paper – “Are Equations True?”, the answer can only be “No!”, or at the very best –“Only in carefully tailored Domains!” Equations are not generally-applicable, eternal forms of real, Natural Laws in Nature at large.

But they are eternal somewhere else!

They are eternal Laws in the parallel World of Pure Forms alone – which we call Ideality! And that is, of course, the realm of Mathematics. It has NEVER been about Reality-as-is, but can apply in a appropriately farmed version, which because of its artificially contrived purity and simplicity, is indeed predictable, in how we define and create, not to mention maintain certain situations, so that such relations are then close to being true.

Of course, it severely limits all so called investigations to such rigidly stable situations, so it is totally useless in dealing with natural changes and developments. And, its greatest failure has been in how such a formulation affects the actual explaining of phenomena.

“Obeys this Law in these conditions” is merely a description, and NOT an explanation!

21 October, 2014

Issue 36 of Shape: Space

What exactly is Space? This is a fundamental area. As soon as we attempt to address such a question, and get beyond simplistic “Nothingness”, we find ourselves in serious trouble – for nowhere can we find a total absence of everything – the Ultimate Void!

Perhaps the place we usually consider to deliver it must be so-called Outer Space –the “empty” gaps between the heavenly bodies, but we cannot even be sure of that. Can we say that every single morsel of anywhere (even in that Outer Space) contains absolutely Nothing?

And, the reason for this is surely the very fact of Light Propagation! There can be no doubt that Light is coming in to us from literally every direction, and the more our telescopes improve, the more previously invisible sources are found to exist and can be seen.

Such ideas beg the question “Doesn’t Light need something to propagate it though Space – must it not have some form of vehicle or medium to transmit it?” As you can see, the question isn’t entirely trivial, is it? Our assumption that it is totally empty is a useable simplification, in many circumstances, but it surely is not the last word?

And these questions are not only concerning its nature. For as soon as we get into such questions, other problems arise, for whatever we consider, we have to “ensure” (if that is possible) that what we extract from Reality, and consider and manipulate are valid concepts, and are dealt with via valid methods.

Yes, Space is quite a subject. So, let us proceed!

Read the issue

20 October, 2014

The Unsolvable Problems of Capitalism

 The Answers are NOT within it!

On what economic basis can a society be constructed and maintained?

My western country is a capitalist society, which is based upon investment, by people with the reserves (wealth) to do it, into enterprises both big and small. The incentive for doing this is that the investor will “own” a piece of the company that has been invested in, and will therefore receive a proportion of its dividends (profits) annually. Also, the holder of the “share” can sell its investment to someone else via the Stock Exchange, and if your (i.e. the investor’s) company is doing well, you can make a profit on that too!

There is NO alternative to this method within capitalism. And, the problem always is, “How does the investor come by the wherewithall to invest?” Well, the present day answer is that they got it from other, prior investments – both in dividends (profits), or in selling other investments for more than they paid for them (profits). Capitalism feeds upon itself, but only, ostensibly, via private entrepreneurs, who fund its development, and thus “kindly provide jobs" for the working classes.

In the modern world the old small-scale production is simply not good enough. It is too expensive! Large-scale production will produce cheaper goods, but will necessarily also require large amounts of initial investments to even get started.

Now, of course, the question of where the very first investments came from before sufficient was available in profits or dividends was, indeed, a major problem. It was called Primitive Accumulation, and has been dealt with very well in a prior SHAPE Blog posting (February 2012), as well as in SHAPE Journal Special Issue 22 (in July 2013)

But, we must also address today’s ever-present problem, of sufficient available investment to keep the “immense pantechnicon moving”. For, it gets harder and dearer to set a new production in train, while at the same time older companies are less and less able to compete with those equipped with the latest facilities.

This is unavoidable due to the Declining Rate of Profit – recognised in the 19th century, and still in evidence today! It is, of course, caused by the incessant necessity for technical advance, in order to be cheaper than your competitors. So, not only in new start-ups, but also in updating and improving your equipment, the need for more investment is always arising.

Indeed, the demand actually outstrips the supply, so companies have also to borrow money at high rates to fill the gaps, and this takes the rate of interest that has to be paid OUT of the hands of the borrowers, and into those of the lenders. And these could only be the Banks!

The source of the Banks’ funds will be the wages and savings that they hold for literally everybody. The lender’s main criterion will be, “Will the borrowers continue to be able to pay the necessary interest?”, while a secondary one will be, “Will they, in the end, also pay back the loan?” If the lenders are satisfied with the answers, they will lend the money, sometimes even if the chance of a full repayment isn’t totally assured – but, of course, in such circumstances, the interest rate charged will be upped accordingly!

Now, usually, when a loan comes up for repayment, the loaned-to company simply borrows elsewhere to pay off the past loan, and the new lenders use the same criteria of ability-to-pay in deciding to forward the necessary amount. BUT, this method is NOT based upon true intrinsic values!

More money is loaned than will ever be repaid at the equivalent value, so the debts are extended ever further into the future. The consequence of this is Inflation!

Money values actually continually decline. In fact, it is a very important part of maintaining the capitalist system: for it affects the different classes selectively. As will be shown, it is very advantageous to the capitalists, as their financial mechanisms keep their values in an advantageous balance, but it is quite the reverse to workers, for the latter only lose by inflation.

NOTE: Good indicators are House values! My current home has risen in value from when I bought my first to now by a factor of 100. Is that mostly reflecting intrinsic value, or is it Inflation?

Now, think what this means in terms of loans and investments! What was borrowed and the interest payable will inevitably SHRINK due to inflation, for it involved borrowing at old values, and is increasingly paid off (with interest) at the new decreased values. So, capitalism depends upon Inflation to keep going!

NOTE: Indeed, the opposite possibility, that of Deflation would mean that both interest and even the final repayment value would be much more that what was initially borrowed. Capitalism would collapse!

Also, without the rich investors Capitalism also couldn’t work!

So let us inspect some downright lies.

How does inflation affect Working People? Looking at the current situation we see inflation going up much faster than wages: it makes them constantly poorer, while their masters pay old dues at the new lesser values. They actually gain doubly! For their loans decline in current values, while their workforce becomes ever cheaper! The situation fulfils their needs perfectly: they can overcome the devastating, if temporary, reinstatement of real value, in a depression or slump, by making the Working class pay for the subsequent re-build!

Now, if you think about the past and present methods of Imperialism and Globalisation, it is clear that they were all followed in order to pay less! For, what they were doing was exporting their problems to what was called The Third World would certainly enable that saving. But, in the end, even that was to some extent terminated as the Third World rose up and Empires melted away! 

The biggest and most recent solution was to bring the Socialist countries back into the capitalist fold by showing sections of those populations (those who could, in the right conditions, become rich) just how well they would do under capitalism. And it worked - for a while at least!

China is the best example. It provides goods cheaper because its workers are paid less. But now, both Russia and China are becoming not only markets and sources of cheap labour, but competitors in the capitalist stakes. Why do you think capitalist Russia is such a bogey?

The Arab Spring and current upheavals in the Middle East are other examples of the exploitation. And, in consequence, local populations are correctly blaming Western capitalism for their problems, and not only rebelling against their imposed, dictatorial leaders, but also increasingly mounting an assault upon the real behind-the-scenes manipulators – the western capitalists. It is no wonder that the current alliance against the Islamic State, as well as the USA, also significantly includes the reactionary regimes in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar and Jordan. What an amazing mix! Are they really in it for humanitarian or moral reasons? You know that cannot be true!

Yet, the Sunni version of Islam, which is claimed to be the Islamic State’s motivation, is the same as that in Saudi Arabia, and of the rulers of Bahrain, regularly acting against their own Shia people. Why would these reactionary regimes line up with the capitalist west?

By the way, it is interesting who does the work in these oil-rich Arab countries? It isn’t the indigenous inhabitants, but brought in labourers from elsewhere without any legal or representational rights.

So, who or what can oppose these collections of parasites?

It isn’t this or that religious group, or anyone else on moral grounds, but only the committed socialists who are for the Workers in all countries, and fight for the End of Capitalism, and its worldwide exploitation and even interventionist wars but only in their constant pursuit of even more Profit! 

14 October, 2014

The Promise of Virgin Land

The Promise of Virgin Land...
...And the ultimate Terrorist Response

The man finally reaches the crest of the rise, and looks down before him upon vast and verdant grasslands that reach as far as the eye can see. It appears to be entirely uninhabited! Large herds of bison roam steadily along across this seemingly infinite and ideal expanse. Yet, the whole area seems to be completely untouched by the action of people.

The silent watcher had only recently escaped from a war-torn Europe, where he had no chance of getting anywhere, or doing anything to change his desperate existence. He was entirely without education, but he could both farm the land, and handle livestock. And, here, before him, was the ideal and uninhabited place The Promised Land, where he could indeed build a good life.

Then, in the distance, he notices a small group of fast-moving, bare-back riders. They are native “Indians”, and they cut out a few strays from the herd and with bows and arrows manage to down several. They fairly quickly remove the best and easily carried parts of the beasts, and depart, whooping with delight. This, it appears is their land!

But, touching his rifle, the watching man realises that they are no kind of farmer, but primitive hunter/gatherers, and as such they need these vast areas to support their families and their tribe. “What a waste!”, thinks the watching farmer. “This land should be farmed!”

It could support many, many people like himself, and with such resources and this ideal land, they would finally be masters of their own destiny! “We must have these valuable grasslands! For, we could develop vast herds of cattle to feed the burgeoning cities in the east. We could build our own state!”

And, of course, this man wasn’t alone. Not only were there literally tens of thousands regularly arriving in America, looking for just such a chance, but the moneymen and politicians in those eastern cities, had also realised the profits that could be made from these verdant plains.

The Indians had to be removed!

These plains must be turned into productive farms. So, by a continual drift of immigrant farmers, plus the machinations, lies and betrayals of the politicians, this land was taken, and the Indians all but destroyed.

The Indians gradually realised that the treaties and agreements would never be honoured, and the only thing that they could do was to kill all interlopers, whoever and whatever they were. They must forcibly clear their land of the perpetual tide of land grabbers. They could not beat the armies that were sent to “pacify” them, so what is today called Terrorism arose! And then, as now, the solution was the same – “Wipe out the terrorists! For they kill the innocent!” – while also taking control of their lands in order to exploit its benefits to the full.

26 September, 2014

Issue 35 of Shape: The Fourth Law

I am reluctant to label my latest contribution “The Fourth Law of Thermodynamics”, because of the absolutely necessary context, into which such a title positions it.

The three original so-called Meta laws of Science, arose within the context of a wholly and exclusively pluralist and technological approach to Science. It could not be other, as that approach was the ONLY one that Mankind could use to attempt to both reveal and use the relations acting within Reality.

Indeed, outside of the found-to-be-essential constraints imposed upon all activities in that investigative AND producing sphere, a law such as the Second Law makes no sense at all!

It is a correct law as an indispensable rider to a pluralist approach, which never investigates entirely unfettered Reality-as-is, but, on the contrary, limits all investigations to within carefully designed, constructed and maintained Domains, without which the sought-for relations could neither be revealed nor extracted.

The Second Law is thus a permanent, accompanying foil to all such pluralistically derived laws. It actually makes totally unfettered Reality into a completely dissociating sump, surrounding the ideal Domains of all investigations and uses.

And, the merest crack in such a fortress, will therefore immediately begin to destroy was so painstakingly achieved in the purposely isolated island of interpretable Form.

Thus the Second Law is not what it is claimed to be! It is actually the World seen reflected in a wholly pluralist, technological mirror.

The incongruity of a Law of Total Dissociation, without an essential countering Law of Construction makes absolutely NO philosophical sense at all!

How can the only way be down?

This issue counters the Second Law with a proved Law of Creation and Construction.

Read Issue 35

Neanderthals: Sub or Rival Humans?

“Neanderthal Doodles hint at Abstract Thought!”, is the subtitle of a recent piece in New Scientist (2985). But, it is an amazingly uninformed quip!

Neanderthals were not apes but the closest relations to Homo Sapiens (ourselves) among the hominid group, who arose from the same crucially defining stock as we did, typified not only by a bipedal gait, but also significantly by a tool using and tool making ancestor, which became the major reason for the vast development in hominid brains, and their consequent mental abilities. Indeed, these abilities are millions of years old, originally emerging in the Homo Habilis ancestor of BOTH ourselves and the Neanderthals. So, to even ask such a question of these hominids is an example of debasing by “damning with faint praise”, and should not be the stance of serious investigators.

Perhaps indeed, such a definition moves the discussion away from whether it is our species that caused their demise. For, if they were a sub-human and evolutionary incapable species, they could well have become extinct due to their inadequate ability to cope with external changes to their environment, rather than being wiped out by the lauded “Homo sapiens”.

Of course, Neanderthals could think!

How could they make tools, if they didn’t use abstract thinking? The attempt to equate such superior mental abilities with “art” puts the cart before the horse. Before we arrived upon the European scene the Neanderthals had be there for hundreds of thousands of years, and were able hunter/gatherers – the SAME as we were when we arrived! To even conceive of a tool, then make it out of a shatter-able hard rock like flint, and to envisage what it would have to be like, would undoubtedly involve abstract thought. Bringing in Abstract Art is amazing! Could it be because we did that?

The insisted-upon step-change between pre-human species and ourselves is the usual way of considering development, and is homocentric! So, the finding of a definitely Neanderthal carving on rock of a simple “cross” design has re-invigorated the assessment of just how good they were at Thinking(?).

NOTE: It is an excellent example of how theories are always predicated upon the current level of Knowledge and understanding of those who put forward such ideas. They can NEVER be the Absolute Truth, but only, at best, the furthest that the thinker could go given his current assumptions and principles. What survives in a theory is due to an increased measure of Objective Content and NOT Absolute Truth!

Indeed, the usual set of clichés, such as Art, is frequently raised, based upon the belief that Homo sapiens is unique, and the epitome of all development!

“Were they advanced enough to make real Art?”, or alternatively, “Could they think abstractly as we certainly can?”, are the usual type of threshold-passing markers of Human superiority! And, the discussion, as is usual, gets stuck in the fabricated mire of homocentrism, with the conclusion, “These inadequate people died out due to Natural Selection! They just couldn’t cope with the changes that were happening in their World!”

Absolute nonsense!

This strain of hominid had the same roots as we did.

Early hominids such as Homo habilis were their ancestors too. They had the important crucial changes, while they were the very same species as we were. They even left Africa long before we did and successfully moved into Europe a hundred thousand years before we managed to get there, and survived many significant changes in climate successfully.

They were indeed our closest cousins, and DNA evidence proves conclusively that they interbred with Homo sapiens successfully with offspring that were viable. What more proof is necessary, that they were NOT fatally inferior to us?

So, are the usual legends true?

The Novel The Inheritors by William Golding didn’t see it that way. Two species found themselves in the same areas – both as hunter/gatherers – needing enormous areas to support such a lifestyle. They would inevitably be competitors!

And the historical record of Homo sapiens, when they have come across other branches of the homo group is not good! In Asia (Indonesia) a small-statured branch was most certainly wiped out by members of our species, and even very much later in America, the English colonists in the East wiped out several native American tribes, who grew crops, and were genetically identical as ourselves.

They did it to get their land.

So, all this homocentric discussion avoids the real questions.

Did we wipe out the Neanderthals? In spite of proved inter-breeding, the newcomers could only relax when they were gone! So, those scratches made by Neanderthals, and found in Gibraltar have been dated at 39,000 years ago, and Neanderthals lived for many millennia after that date.

And, here is another relevant question, “If homo sapiens did wipe them out, what were they be likely to do with any found remains and signs of the people they had removed? What would they have done with their artefacts and remains?

Would they have kept them and cherished them?

And, we know what allowed the development of Art in humans, even while they were still hunter/gatherers. It was only possible in highly conducive conditions of life. The Lascaux Cave Paintings were at a place where the migrating herds of wild animals could be counted upon to pass that way, and Men could remain in one place, and not only survive, but actually flourish.

And later, after the Neolithic Revolution, which caused a mammoth change in lifestyles with farming and animal husbandry, which had a very similar effect upon those humans involved – staying in one place and having time to do other things apart from just surviving.

If you wanted to really to really address this question, there would have to be a looking for those enabling conditions in undisturbed Neanderthal remains and sites.

The present-day investigators using today’s morality and prohibitions, will unavoidably mis-interpret how “God’s People” reacted to an alternative and competing species.

15 September, 2014

Socialists for an Independent Scotland!

It is clear that all the pro-capitalist parties in the UK oppose Scottish Independence.

It should tell socialists that these people couldn’t give a damn for the people of Scotland. They have used it as a dumping back yard for generations.

The Scottish People deserve better!

And they wont get it as part of the UK.

Independence will change all political agendas. And because of this all socialists must support Independence.


It is because the Scottish people have been socialist for a long time. Kier Hardie built the Labour Party for the Working Class. There is only one Tory MP from the whole of Scotland! Even among the SNP there are socialists.

What has been missing both in Scotland, and in the rest of the UK has been a clear and resonant socialist call for Independence!

Think about it!

If Independence is achieved, what will be the agenda of the SNP? They will have achieved the reason for their existence, so what will they do then? The answer is NOTHING! They will no longer have a populist and invigorating policy! Their leaders will revert to being what they have always been – pro-capitalist!

But, what will the people of Scotland expect as a result of Independence as the Will of the People? They will expect Socialism! The nuclear backyard will be kicked out! And they will expect the Oil and Gas reserves of both the North Sea and the Firth of Clyde to be used soley for the benefit of the People of Scotland!

We must shout loud and clear for an independent Scotland!

Forward to Socialism!

08 September, 2014


What is Dialectics?

Dialectics was a discovery of Frederick Hegel – the German Idealist Philosopher, who, some 200 years ago, considered his area of study to be Thinking about Thought, and realised that all our conceptions about Reality are unavoidably constrained by our experiences and the current extent and depth of our understanding. He further realised that such understanding would always be compromised, most particularly, by what we still didn’t yet know, but also, and primarily, by our own arrived-at assumptions, concepts and principles.

The journey to a “full understanding” was not only never-ending, but was also strewn with passage-impeding rocks of our own making. Now, that doesn’t sound either very profound, or even optimistic! Indeed, it is often used as an argument for – “Give up now you’ll never do it!”. But that wasn’t Hegel’s view!

It may appear defeatist, but that wasn’t what he took from this discovery. He recognised that our assumptions were absolutely necessary, to make any progress at all, and, crucially, they were never pure invention. On the contrary, they were always based upon some aspects or parts of an as yet unrevealed Absolute Truth. And, this content gave those conceptions a definite measure of objectivity. But, invariably, such extractions from Reality would be useless if each of them only applied to a single solitary thing.

Mankind wanted more general conceptions that could be used across the board. So the correct parts and aspects were turned into “general truths”: and that was both a breakthrough, and an error!

For, the incompleteness of these forced generalities - clearly unavoidable when they were made, would also unavoidably confer a distorted outcome upon our subsequent uses of these generalities. Though they would work in many cases, they would also, and inevitably, lead to a point where they would deliver contradictory pairs of consequent concepts. These pairs were clearly mutually exclusive: they were in direct contradiction to one another, and yet were BOTH outcomes of our earlier assumptions. They couldn’t both be true! Yet, neither one nor the other could be sufficient to cover what the pair delivered. They were both wrong!

Now these Dichotomous Pairs indicated to Hegel (just as the Pair Continuity and Descreteness had indicated to Zeno some 2,300 years earlier) that the underlying assumptions, in spite of containing a measure of Objective Content, were also, in fact, both at fault in important ways.

The question was, “How can we possibly transcend both these erroneous concepts, and come up with better ones that were not contradictory?” Hegel, therefore, used this to set about finding ways to transcend these impasses that seemed insuperable if we were to keep both of the contradicting concepts.

By a careful study of the members of a Dichotomous Pair, he was able to reveal the assumptions upon which they were based, and his task would be to replace them with other assumptions that could deliver the positive aspects of both, while removing the contradictions. The impasse would only be transcended and a better basis for understanding put in place, if the new suggestions dug deeper and revealed more aspects of the truth than were embodied in those they were to replace. He knew, of course, that even if successfully achieved, this would nevertheless be a never-ending oscillation. For each new premise would, in spite of the gains it had delivered, in the end, reveal its own shortcomings by producing yet another Dichotomous Pair, and with it another seemingly final impasse.

Hegel called this method Dialectics, because instead of obvious adjustments to one or the other of the Pair, the solution had to deal with both, testing what was suggested for one, as it affected the other. In the end the premise had to be as good as possible for both: the process was a dialog between the requirements to solve both the members of the Pair. At the end of the process a single new basis, which dealt effectively with both, had to be delivered, if the achievement was to be anything other than a clever frig.

Clearly, such solutions would never be easy to achieve, and the underlying causes, would not only be well entrenched, but would have repercussions in many different areas. The new assumptions would be revolutionary!

Clearly, the most important feature of Dialectics was that it rejected the methods based upon Formal Logic, for they underlay massive tracts of the prevailing culture. The building of greater truths out of lesser truths, as was the basis in Formal Logic, was totally rejected. Instead of a mere accumulation of new knowledge being sufficient, it was clearly a transformation of how we thought about things that had to be achieved, And, this had to be done every single time! [As V. Gordon Childe, the great archaeologist said, “Man makes himself!”]

Hegel’s contention was that the building of Truth could never be cumulative, but came in fits and starts as prior, misleading bases had to be demolished and replaced on a regular basis.

You may have heard of Dialectics as the method used by Karl Marx, and the evident basis of Marxism, which it certainly was, though, of course, Marx had transferred Hegel’s methodology wholesale into a materialist perspective, and hence renamed his method Dialectical Materialism! But not many know what it actually involves?

Following Supernovae

What happens next?

A completely non-living example of an Emergence Phoenix is, of course, the final “death” of a star in a Supernova Explosion! After a whole consequent series of collapses and “rebirths”, as available fusible elements are necessarily created and then successively used up in different fusion reactions, the last and seemingly final step in this sequence was that which produced Iron (Fe) in that sort of fusion of nuclei, characteristic of the smaller elements. But, that “”final collapse” was different!

It was not the end of the story, for though there were no possible ongoing fusion reactions left, to counteract gravity’s inwards pulling, the star inevitably kept on collapsing down to an unheard of tiny size, which caused not an ongoing state, but an Event – a cataclysmic triggering of the simultaneous fusion of not only everything available, but also their products in one almighty Bang of multiple simultaneous fusion reactions. And, out of that (cosmically) “point source”, the most colossal explosion occurred, outshining whole galaxies of normal stars! Indeed, all the elements, from above Iron, all the way to Uranium were produced in this cataclysm!

Now, it is clear that without such supernovae there could be none of these elements! And, therefore the favourite humanising parable by astronomers concerns this fact – that Life itself, and, of course, ultimately Mankind too, could never have happened without such a final catastrophe. “We are all made of star stuff!”, is their mantra!

So, once again, though on such a colossal, and much slower scale, the cataclysm of the collapse and its following explosion finally (and retrospectively predictably) produced wholly new elements, which were not predictable directly in the usual way. They were not only new as such, but also displayed many wholly new properties too, and hence many previously impossible further interactions and developments.

This undoubted Emergence had created a wholly new context, and consequent set of possibilities, which though very, very slow to begin with, ultimately concentrated under gravity - first into clouds, and finally into new stars and planets, but NOW containing this vast array of new elements, which, as Earth has shown, could, and indeed did, lead ultimately to Life.

NOTE: By the way, if that wasn’t enough for you, how do you now consider what the Big Bang is most likely to have been?

This post is taken from Special Issue 28 of the Shape Journal entitled The Phoenix. Read the rest here.

New Special Issue: The Phoenix

The poets knew it long ago, but could only describe it. Yet, profound though their accounts were, their tale certainly needed a more comprehensive explanation to take their wise observations further. Clearly, the lack of such an answer as to why it was so, shows that the role of the poet is to make profound observations, which others too often, if not invariably, miss!

I am, of course, referring to the description of “The Phoenix arising from the flames of destruction!” Though it is indeed a special and important revelation of seemingly contradictory processes, it does also require not many only good, concrete examples to be described in detail, but also for them to be thoroughly and more generally explained. How and why does such a seemingly inexplicable process actually occur?

To make any progress beyond the cryptic revelation, we also need to know what exactly is being described by such a process. The event is clearly the outcome of a totally dissociative or destructive initial phase, having as its surprising and following outcome, a real, constructive and creative step forward. And, in so doing it certainly completely contradicts common sense in the normal way of predicting future outcomes from current processes.

Read Issue

13 August, 2014

Defeat the Tory Onslaught!

Forward to Socialism!

So, what is happening now, some six years after the worldwide recession in Capitalism? How, indeed, could a system, based solely upon fictitious credit, recover itself, and be able to continue exactly as before? There could be only one way!

They would have to convince themselves and their investors, that the Working Class could be forced right back – lose all its gains, and indeed actually pay for the reconstruction! Their initial answer was clear!

Sack many, many workers, particularly those in the “unproductive” public sector, that wasted resources on Services. Cut those remnants of Socialism to the bone. And, such a step change in employment, as well as the efforts to reduce the pension commitments, would not only greatly arm the employers to drive down real wages, but would also drive many pensioners to seek part time jobs in retail, where the wages would be low and the trades unions weak!

But, how could they get away with it, without it becoming crystal clear who was being made to pay for the mess?

As usual, especially with a blatant right wing Capitalist Party back in power, the policies carried out would have to be carefully managed to disguise their intentions, so they could pretend that they were concerned about unemployment and committed to getting jobs back for those thrown upon the dole, as well as the six years worth of young people leaving full time education, with literally no chance of getting a job, never mind a career.

The lie was revealed by a capitalist called, I believe, Green, who on the day of the massive collapse in Iceland, was over there like a shot, attempting to buy up enterprises at rock bottom prices!

Do you think he was keeping all his workers in the UK safely in employment?

The Tories had the answers!

It was zero hours contracts and Part time jobs. Both of these would give boosts to the total numbers in work, while ensuring that pay would be as low as possible.

Now, during periods of prosperity these same politicians always blamed Inflation upon a grasping workforce and their selfish unions – screwing excessive wage increases out of the hard pressed employers, who were forced to accede by the blackmail of threatened Strikes. But what are they saying now? We have current Inflation consistently higher than wage increases, which means that wages are constantly going DOWN in real terms.

We can buy less and less with our wages all the time, which are not only smaller, because of the new types of employment involved, but shrinking consistently as well in real terms. UK Capitalism is still clawing its way back financed by the British Working Classes.

It isn’t the rich, who used to be able to live well entirely off the interest on their invested wealth. But, those who can having more and more confidence in investing in firms using the new means of employment that were allowing the absolute maximum exploitation.

They are still buying their super cars, as current statistics show!

So, what has to be done?

The employed Workers are held over a barrel, with no easement of their regular commitments , but both declining real wages and unreliable jobs, not to mention the ease with which they could be sacked, if they stood up for themselves. The Red Flag of Socialism must be raised!

Demos must be threatening in their demands!

No single issue demos at all! But general and massive gatherings of ALL who are affected, particular those in current action, for wages, jobs and the removal of hard won pension rights and other privileges.

But also the old, the disabled and the youth must be drawn into the struggle, with the absolutely maximum proportions.

Between now and the General Election, the most damning campaign must be mounted! And it is YOU who must be involved!

08 August, 2014

Democracy: Services to and Control by the People

It is hard to disagree with the concept of the organisation of a Society for the benefit of its people – The Idea of Service. Just as it is similarly obvious that such an organisation be under the control of the populace – The Concept of Democracy. So, historically, it has been necessary for those in power to in some way subscribe to both of these principles (or at least pretend that they do).

Let us look, critically, at some significant examples.

The fabled properties of Democracy, both as the will of the people, and also their overall control, are, of course, total myths in current so-called “Democratic States”, and the evidence for these assertions can be found everywhere, and can show exactly whose wants and needs are serviced by this lauded system of rule. Of course, it must be where both wealth and power reside that has to be addressed, but, in a somewhat distorted way, for the nearest thing to what is desired is delivered, if only marginally, by Local Democracy, where known and accessible representatives do things that immediately affect people – that is in local or District Councils of various types.

For, one aspect of these organisations did take things out of the control of the oligarchs, and it was in the services owned and run by these elected Local Authorities. Of course, the composition of these Councils would represent the area, which elects it, and in affluent areas the local authority would see its task to serve that constituency, and its occupants. Whereas in a working class city, the majority would have very different priorities, and these would be, sometimes at least, evident in the actions of their elected Council.

But, that is Democracy, and a comparison of how such different Councils see their priorities is very interesting and informative, and always distorted by misleading comparisons such as in efficiency and expenditure priorities. Clearly a prosperous area would not need to allocate large resources to support the poor, nor would they have any sympathy for those Councils that did. They would compare expenditures and condemn the “high-spending” Council that have large populations of people needing all kinds of essential support.

Now, it is precisely these kinds of criticism, that are used to discredit “Serving Councils” for the affluent take pride in “paying their own way”, while assuming that those who cannot are lazy or worthless, while, at the same time, lavishing vastly more on their own ill family members than could ever be spent on a poor patient by a social service.

So, let us look objectively at certain social services, which have shown great contributions to the good of the populace, and were and occasionally, still are supplied by Local Democratic Organisations.

Public Transport

Let me start by giving an example from my own experience.

It also should be made clear that I am a working class person from the City of Manchester in England, and was born and brought up in a slum area called West Gorton. I am certain you would get a very different story from someone in Withington or the Stockbroker Belt in North West Cheshire, but their view is available everywhere, whereas the one I will give certainly isn’t.

Oh, and just in case the reader has already pigeonholed me. I finally retired some 20 years ago as a Professor in London University, so what I relate cannot be dismissed as sour grapes from a failure in our society (as is regularly slapped onto any working class critics).

In the 1950s I used to go, every fortnight, to watch my favourite football team, Manchester United, and an average home gate of around 53,000 spectators was got to the ground from all parts of the enormous conurbation by Manchester Corporation Transport in a large fleet of special buses, which were organised like clockwork. In a very short time literally all of these were delivered to the ground, and then removed, just as efficiently, at the end of the match. It was both cheap and vastly more efficient than private cars could ever be, and being a Local Authority Service NO profit was involved. Each and every double-decker bus was packed, and the flexibility of tailor made routes (only used for this purpose) was unachievable by any other means.

Indeed, such an effective and wide-ranging transport system was largely self-financing and economical for its users.

But now, after 60 years of “progress”, no such system exists. The bus companies are now privately owned, and work to a very different imperative, instead of being an efficient and economic service, they now must make a profit – without which they simply wouldn’t exist.

NOTE: Imagine how different hospitals would be if they too had to make a profit!

For example the evident virtues for both passengers and transport workers of the old Driver and Conductor arrangement have finally been completely dispensed with after privatisation was finally established as the universal method of provision. Such things as helping old people and mothers with children, on and off the bus were, to say the least, “not conducive to making profit”, so they were dispensed with. And the advantages for speed of service made possible by the collection of fares while on the move, has been replaced by the driver doing all that himself at every single stop and for every passenger, which, it has to be admitted, did wonders for the profit margins now available to the new owners.

Indeed, for a very long while, a significant part of the transport systems were entirely electrically driven in either Trams or Trolley buses, with vastly superior environmental effects than occur with present systems.

The care and maintenance of all these vehicles was undertaken by Council owned and run facilities – again a service with no profit involved. Both my uncle and my brother-in-law worked as bodybuilding specialists in one of the main garages, and were highly trained and well paid, having had apprenticeships, along with Tech-College linked courses. I worked for 10 years in such a College, and the quality of the lecturers and instructors, as well as the qualified engineers that they produced were second to none (I know this because I employed such people as technicians and they were a valuable contribution to the department).

NOTE: By the way, these Colleges were also a service, run by the Council, and, of course, non-profit making.

Funnily enough, all sorts of other, seemingly unconnected things declined too. For example the Public Service Vehicle license (PSV), which all public service vehicle drivers had to gain before they were allowed to drive such vehicles, were then clearly superior to what they are now. I wonder why?

Also behind the scenes in Public Transport mechanics, with similar rigorous training, kept the engines and safety systems up to scratch, while a large army of cleaners kept both the insides and outsides of the vehicles at an acceptable standard.

I’ll leave the reader to consider what has happened to all these aspects too, and for the very same reasons!

Whatever criticisms there were of Public Transport, there is also little doubt that the imperatives involved were for Service rather than Profit, and usually the workers unions were given much better access and facilities than are ever provided in most private companies.

Even local and national regulation was vastly more efficient, for one visit of an inspection team to the enormous garage where my relatives worked could cover far more and far better, than could be achieved in innumerable visits to multiple small transport companies, and their sub-contracted support firms too, as is the case now. Finally, the economies of scale also made the large publicly owned organisations superior to tiny shoestring alternative: there would be the right kit and an appropriate range of trained operatives, from those with years of experience down to apprentices constantly monitored and instructed in best practice.

All this is indeed a taster of Socialised Services, much better 60 years ago than they are now!

Yet, the directing of these services was NOT directly in the hands of the populace, or of their elected representatives in Local Government. The people did not elect the managers of these vast undertakings. They could vote off their known, local and available councillors, and could change the councillors in office at regular elections. But, such a system wasn’t naively bottom-up controlled and run. It required specialists to do that. But, nevertheless, if truly democratic control was in place, the electorate could act at the ballot box. The job of elected councillors was to establish the Service Ethos in their employees, from bottom to top. And even way back in my youth, there was ample evidence that this was achieved in many such organisations. To judge appropriately you merely have to compare then with now.

Do you really think that modern transport firms are run with the service approach? They wouldn’t last long today!

This brief visit to the past was not meant to define a Golden Age. It was never that. But, it showed here and there how Services should be run and most important of all BY WHOM!


 Now, Public Transport may not be considered the most important area that involves services to the people, and I would agree.

In a long career in Education, with posts at every level from Junior Schools to Universities, I can speak authoritatively about these services, as by far the most important.

Now, it is in schools and colleges of all kinds that Local Democracy has a major role. And, once again, the differences between how this totally non profit making and countrywide service is delivered, and how it contrasts with organisations dedicated primarily and predominantly with the production of profits for those who have no other necessary qualification or general knowledge, but can extract profit, and hence do have the money to invest, is remarkable.

Once again, the quality involved in how such a service as Education was delivered to the Community, is vastly better than in any profit-making concern.

Indeed, there are no bonuses for teachers, and none desired, or expected. The calibre of those who choose such a demanding and worthwhile career is uniformly superior to any other organisation, if your criteria are to do with what is delivered to the community served, and for what reasons.

And, for some considerable time, now, whenever they got into power, the Tories, would make yet another assault upon State Education, while, of course, sending their own children to private, fee-paying schools, where they would receive, primarily, the appropriate social connections and command training for their future ruling roles in society.

For, the mass of the population are, in their eyes, only educated in such ways, and to such levels, to service the current economic system, Capitalism, and its essential role of producing ever-larger profits. For, unless what was done in such institutions was limited to such ends, such places would only foster discontent with the "Natural Order". Such totally unproductive educational content must be actively swept away, to produce the ideally prepared workers for this, “the only possible system”.

Indeed, it had been coming to their notice that in certain areas pupils were being educated in such a way that they would have happy and fulfilling lives, and that could certainly only “lead them astray”!
What is clear to these traditional rulers, is that educational institutions must be, primarily, to fit all their products to the needs and wants of their future employers, and concentrate all learning upon only what they will need in their assigned-for roles in society. Education that encouraged them in any other prospective futures was both unkind to them, and destructive to an ordered and healthy economic future for Society. Crucially, thinking for themselves and being creative, artistic or maybe politically active would be well beyond the Pale.

And, we must see all their changes in Educational Policy in this light.

Even the current attacks upon Birmingham Council, under the guise of attacking Moslem extremists, is basically yet another attempt to wrest this jewel of real Social Service out of the hands of Local Democracy, and into the hands of people who agree with their pro-capitalist policies.

Indeed, in a recent news programme on TV (June 2014), the ministers in Parliament, and even the newscasters, themselves, steadfastly refused to either ask, or answer, the Key Questions, and, in fact, purposely misled ordinary people as to both what was actually going on in 21 Birmingham Schools, who was responsible for them, and what their own agendas were for Education in particular, and Local Democracy, in general.

Clearly, Education should never be in the hands of those who don’t really care about anything but making a profit, and should demonstrate the most democratically controlled service of all!