Monday, 2 November 2009

St Andrews G20 Protest - "Press Release"

*************PLEASE DISTRIBUTE, FORWARD & RE-POST FAR & WIDE*************

In St. Andrews, we say "Nae Tae G20!

No to G20 neo-liberalism! No to economic exploitation! No to environmental

Yes to sustainability, community cooperation and peoples' representation!
Yes to liberation, solidarity, equality, human rights and peace!
Yes to revolution!

On the first weekend in November, the financial leaders of the world's
twenty richest countries will be hosting closed door meetings in order to
decide how our world should be run. The Group of Twenty (G20) finance
ministers have chosen to host these meetings in the town of St. Andrews,
Scotland, and in response groups of residents and students have paved the
way to make our voices heard.

We the residents and students of this community are coming into the streets
to say loud and clear, "The G20 is not welcome in our town," or as the Scots
say, "Nae tae G-20!" We are joining together to say that the neo-liberal
development, trade and environmental policies furthered by the G20 will not
solve the global financial crisis, not solve the global ecological crisis
and do not address the ever-increasing wealth gap. We are resisting the G20
because it is a mechanism of the global ruling elite that seeks to enrich
the "1st world" at the expense of increasing poverty for the
"underdeveloped" and "developing" world.

There are a number of organizations making exciting plans in St. Andrews
during the weekend of the G20 meeting, and while Put People First ( has organized an educational event, we have set our sights
on getting people into the streets to show our collective dissent. To this
end we have called for two days of festive actions:

- Friday, November 6, 2009, 11:00am, join us for a protest rally at the
center of town fountain, located near the intersection of Market Street and
College Street.

- Saturday, November 7, 2009, 1:30pm, join us for a march, also starting at
the fountain at the center of town. The march will be gathering at 1:30pm
and departing by 2:00pm.

In addition to these actions, groups are encouraged to organize locally in
their communities, and come to St. Andrews to share their creative
resistance with us during these two days. We will do our best to support
your action if you require some assistance.

This action has been endorsed locally by Stop the War, the Scottish
Socialist Party, numerous St. Andrews University student societies, and
assorted Scottish workers unions.

Please direct all questions, endorsements, press inquiries and hate mail to and for more information as it arises visit:

See you in the streets, November 6th & 7th!

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Taycoast Branch Meeting - 29th August - St Andrews

The Taycoast Branch will be holding a meeting in the Schielhallion room of the Manesfield Building (Chaplancy) of the University of St Andrews (opposite the Union).Meet outside prior to 12 Noon.

Date: Saturday 29th of August
Time: 12 Noon

All welcome.

Monday, 17 August 2009

Appeal for support from Scottish Palestinian Solidarity Campaign activists on trial for ‘racism’

An arrest warrant was issued at Friday’s court hearing against Sofiah MacLeod, Scottish PSC Secretary currently in Palestine witnessing Israel’s racist dispossesion of Palestinians. The warrant was cancelled shortly afterwards, however. Sofiah will bring her recent experiences of Israeli state-driven racism when she goes on trial accused of ‘racism’. Three of the other four accused will similarly produce evidence from first-hand experience of Israel’s programme of ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.

On trial for ‘racially aggravated conduct’ are five Scots who responded to the Palestinian appeal for boycott of Israel. We protested a visit by the Israeli state-sponsored Jerusalem Quartet to the 2008 Edinburgh International Festival. Next appearance in Edinburgh Sherriff Court is on Thursday October 1st, when our lawyers will argue to dismiss the case against us .

The Scottish legal authorities will attempt to prove that shouting ‘End the siege of Gaza’, and ‘Boycott Israel’ equals ‘racism’. We five will argue that boycott of Israel is a duty while that State violates every canon of international law.

This is a political show-trial, encouraged by the stated positions of the British Government, and is aimed at intimidating Palestine supporters. We shall certainly not be intimdated: last year we saw off some Zionist rascals from SCoJeC (Scottish Council of Jewish Communities) who were unwise enough to claim in print that Scottish PSC is anti-Semitic. They then had to pulp 6,000 copies of a book, Scotland’s Jews, in open admission that the claim was without foundation and libellous.

We will show in our defence/attack that

1.we are bound to oppose grave Israeli crimes and British Government complicity in those crimes, including political, diplomatic, economic and military support for Israeli Governments

2.the nearest domestic political equivalent in Britain to the factions in the Isaeli Government is the neo-Nazi British National Party (BNP)

3.Israel is an apartheid state as defined in international law
the Palestinian-inspired BDS campaign is a duty for consistent supporters of human rights, i.e. those who repudiate a racist attitude that Palestinians, Iraqis, Afghans and others have a lesser entitlement than others

4. the Jerusalem Quartet are indeed, as we claim, institutionally linked to the Israeli Army and its State, and thus to be boycotted by human rights supporters
Expert witnesses - Palestinians, Israelis and others - will show that the growing support for the Palestinian BDS appeal is

justified by

1. the history of ethnic cleansing carried out by the Zionist movement and its State from 1948 to the present

2. the conscious determination of the Israeli State to continue with further criminal acts of ethnic cleansing

3. the failure of the British Government to honour its international legal obligations to opppose Israeli apartheid, specifically the illegal Wall and settlement building

Witnesses who have agreed to give expert evidence or personal testimonies for the defence include:

Leila Khaled, Palestinian refugee and resistance fighter, Member of Palestinian National Council
Dr. Ghada Karmi, Palestinian writer and academic
Omar Barghouti PACBI (Palestinian Academic and Cultural Boycott)
Dr. Hisham Genayem, Palestinian refugee and surgeon
Dr. Moshe Machover, Israeli academic and anti-Zionist political activist
Dr. Michael Kearney, University of York (t.b.c)
Dr. Keith Hammond, University of Glasgow
Yael Kahn, Israeli human rights activist
Marion Woolfson, Hon. President of Scottish PSC
Liz Elkind, ex-President of the STUC, moved successful report and recommendation for BDS at STUC 2009 Perth Conference
Tony Greenstein, (JBIG) Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods
Rt. Hon. Peter Hain MP, veteran anti-apartheid campaigner in the 70’s, Chair of Stop All Racist Tours (awaiting reply)
Members of the public who witnessed the protest during the performance
BBC sound technicians who recorded the entire event (awaiting reply)

We are asking supporters to

1. send letters of support to

2. invite one of the accused to speak and explain the background and aims of the campaign to your trade union, political party branch, mosque, church or campaign group

3. turn up outside, and inside, the Court on October 1st and later sessions
make a donation to the campaign (Judge Horseburgh criticised the Legal Aid board severely for refusal to provide legal aid to one of the accused.)

4. boycott everything Israeli, except those Israelis supporting Palestinian human and national rights

5. join the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign to help us build this campaign

Saturday, 8 August 2009

LRNC Begin Writing Pamphlet

The Lower Rents Now! Coalition (LRNC)has began to write a well-researched pamphlet on the state of unaffordable, pseudo-sustainable, university-owned accommodation within the town of Saint Andrews.

After news reached the group that the University had gained proper funding to push ahead with the Fife Park rebuild (beginning imminently), a member decided to take incentive and push forward the campaign by writing "an accessible work for all St Andrews' students", stating that "whether still holding on to the view that the University is a beacon of truth or whether the reader is already disillusioned, the evidence and practice of University decision making and residential management will shock beyond all belief".

Once the pamphlet is finished it will be distributed in the town and available to browse as a pdf.

Updates on the LRNC campaign can be found here or on the LRCN homepage (link above).

Scottish Socilaist Youth Blog

The Scottish Socialist Youth has set up a blog.

Click Here To View the Blog


Monday, 27 July 2009

Equality under the Law – The Old Testament’s Socialist Legacy? (A Case for Christian and Left Unity?) - Short Article by James Morris

Equality under the Law – The Old Testament’s Socialist Legacy?

A Case for Christian and Left Unity?

A Development of John Barton’s ‘Human Dignity’ Argument found in ‘Ethics and the Old Testament’

A poorly reasoned and ill-researched Liberation Theology in which Marxist-theologians placed their own values’ onto scripture has all but died, yet this does not mean that socialist thought cannot be found in Judaic-Christian Scripture. ‘An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a hand for a hand, a foot for a foot, a burning for a burning, a wound for a wound, a blow for a blow’ (Exodus 21: 24 – 25), is one of the most controversial statements made in the Old Testament, yet we find under closer inspection it is a beacon of developing socialist thought in an otherwise rigidly patriarchal, conservative and dated text.

Although the supposed barbarity of such a law is apparent to modern day readers, the fact that all humans are treated equally under its constraints is rarely noticed, regardless of social status the punishment is equal, whether master or slave, man or woman. This is one of the few Israelite Laws that lacks gender or class discrimination. In the surrounding passages we find that humanity is more important than property with lower scales of punishment for the damage of goods, livestock and so on. For an ancient society this is a radical step away from a caste-like system where the poor suffer more severe punishments for crimes that both they and the rich commit. It is certainly sad to think that in many cases the criminal justice systems in modern society is far from equal. It is important to note that in practice ‘an eye for an eye’ was never taken literally as an enactment of revenge, rather a ‘good tariff for recompense’ was established based on the crimes’ seriousness. The Hebrews believed strongly in the idea of Human Dignity, which again in an Ancient Middle Eastern setting was a radical concept. Sadly however it is likely that ‘Human Dignity’ only extended to fellow Israelites, as the Elect by God they could not lower themselves to the petty ideas of other systems such as physical mutilation (which was practiced as part of other Middle Eastern cultures criminal justice systems). It is only in later historical periods that we start to see an Israelite mission to other nations, thus leading these laws to be applicable for everyone.

We certainly still have some sense of Human Dignity in the British Criminal system, yet the system is far from equal, the answer is not however to return to or to promote Old Testament values and morals but to promote the sense of equality found by closer examination of certain Old Testament passages, and to explore more deeply the possibility of unity with the Christian-Left. It is of course dangerous to promote anything scriptural, as the men who wrote the world’s ‘Holy’ books lived in radically different often agrarian cultures, with many of their ideals being confined to the time they lived, with few which are truly timeless. Although scripture can present socialist style ideas proclaiming equality, revolution and so on, we also come across a breadth of passages that are discriminatory and anti-Socialist in mind set. Moreover the risk of taking a literal reading of the Old Testament and viewing the “word” of God as infallible is too strong for those adopting its exclusive truth claims. Recoiling away from scripture yet promoting the socialist ideas which underlie parts of it could produce a great yield. Modern biblical scholarship has shown us that scripture is fallible and that Jesus was not a historical person, yet Christianity has the most adherents of any religion in the UK. Finding common ground with this majority is important for the socialist struggle, the Christian Left would be more than pleased to take part in future Left Unity agreements, but the first step is to set up dialogue with them. It could even be the case that those who are liberal minded or moderate Christians take a step towards the left when it is revealed that in some respects our views are not dissimilar. Those more read Christians however will realise that their messiah fulfilled Israelite law thus making it redundant, yet these same people will fall into the school of Christian thought that for centuries has ignored the words of their saviour and misread the passages of the Old Testament resulting in a brutal western history where equality is overtly ignored.

Equality is an ideal that both socialism and the Christian Left strive for; the time is long overdue; we must unite and open dialogue.

By James Morris

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Issues Close to Home - Scottish Traveller Community Marginalised (By Colin Turbett)

Scratch beneath the surface of opinion in Scottish rural communities and you will very probably find attitudes that would make an apologist for apartheid in South Africa blush.

There is little doubt that Scotland’s Gypsy Traveller community remain marginalised and misunderstood, and that prejudice against them is rife. As with most racism and bigotry this has its roots are in official attitudes that continue to this day.

At the Bobbin Mill site in Pitlochry, Perthshire, two large extended families face yet another harsh winter in dilapidated accommodation with no amenities on a site described in a recent BBC report as ‘squalid’.

I spoke to Shamus McPhee by phone from the warmth and comfort of my home - Shamus meantime was wrapped up against the cold in a candlelit caravan he estimated to be worth £36. Perth and Kinross are charging him Band A Council Tax, even though they provide no amenities - the separate charge for water and sewerage was only dropped after persistent campaigning on the basis that these were not provided.

In 2006 the Scottish Parliament pledged £97,500 for the provision of a new chalet for Shamus’s father. Also part of the deal the SNP led Perth and Kinross Council were to provide an additional 25 per cent for a communal washing facility and provision of basic services: water, electricity and sewerage.

Nearly two years on and the Council are still at the planning stages for these amenities that are taken for granted elsewhere. Their argument that Bobbin Mill was an ‘unauthorised site’ cut little ice with the residents who had been placed there sixty years previously by the Council’s forebears, and this reason for lack of action seems to have been quietly dropped. Meantime with nowhere to wash his body and clothes properly Shamus found himself unable to get work and an unsympathetic Job Centre stopped his benefit for six months.

He found himself unable to pay his Council Tax and given the lack of progress with the promised upgrade, has felt reluctant to start since. Local MSP and government minister, the SNP’s John Swinney has not visited Bobbin Mill for many years and seems uninterested in the problems on the site.

Bobbin Mill was established in 1946 as a racial experiment to assimilate Gypsy Travellers. The reports that describe this and similar experiments elsewhere in the UK talk of the problem of travellers being a ‘stain on the welfare state’ and use language similar to that used by the Nazis when describing misfits in their society (including gypsies) who eventually became the victims of the ‘final solution’.

As the residents were not considered fit to live in normal council houses they were given huts that soon fell apart in the harsh climate of the Scottish Highlands. The logic that this would somehow wean residents away from generations of travelling and into acceptable conformism was lost on the victims of the experiment.

Instead marginalisation was reinforced and it continues to this day.

Despite the fact that Shamus and four of his fellow residents at Bobbin Mill are actually university graduates, they feel as much the victims of prejudice and societal ignorance as their forebears.

In recent years Gypsy Travellers have been recommended for status as an officially recognised ethnic minority.

This could afford protection under the anti-racist laws, but as yet there have been no test cases through the Courts and the legal establishment seem reluctant to pursue the matter.

The Scottish Parliament see racial identity as a matter for Westminster so have argued that they can do nothing more.

The last Scottish Parliament Equal Opportunities Committee produced a report in 2005 that concluded that no progress seemed to have been made in the previous five years in addressing issues raised from the travelling community: accommodation, education, health, representation and engagement. Under the new SNP parliament interest and momentum seem to have been lost and the issues shelved.

Scottish Gypsy Travellers have a rich culture of story telling and singing that has been celebrated by socialist folklorists like Hamish Henderson. Their simple mobile lifestyle provided vital labour in past years in rural communities requiring seasonal labour.

Prejudice and misunderstanding have pushed them to the margins of society and like similar groups elsewhere in the world, alcohol abuse has taken its toll. Shamus and other Gypsy Travellers consider that there is a continued systemic effort to end their lifestyle and forcibly assimilate them into mainstream society.

He and his family can trace roots and language back across the world to Asia and a migration that happened centuries ago; they are not prepared to let their traditions go.

The SNP vision of a new inclusive Scotland has no resonance in Bobbin Mill.

Monday, 13 July 2009

Wyndford Occupation Ends!

'The group of courageous parents who have occupied Wyndford primary school since Friday 26th June have decided to end their sit-in, but to fight on against the injustices and education cuts by the Glasgow Labour council, more angry and determined than ever.

They left the building in tears – sad to have to leave the building to the tender mercies of the Labour council vandals, angry at what the council is inflicting on their kids and community.'

Quoting (Glasgow SOS Blog) where the rest of the article can be found.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Wyndford Primary School Occupation – The Fascist Microcosm

2009 has been a year of turmoil, the crisis in capitalism has caused unemployment to sore, with both families and individuals striving to survive. Society has been transmogrified with a spate of protests, and the voting in of extreme-right parties in the European Elections. Yet the difficulties in Glasgow have been manifold with 13 Primary Schools and 12 Nurseries being considered for closure. Whilst capitalism struggles on, the parents of Glasgow school children have been acting, re-occupying Wyndford Primary School on the 29th of June.

Whenever an organisation decides to occupy a building as a means of protest it is never long before a private security firm and the police are called in to ‘deal’ with the situation, their ‘objective’ to protect the public, the occupants and the building. Despite this the police are likely to leave, hassling the protesters to only a small extent, allowing the security firm to begin running operations. The firm has one objective; to wear down the occupants thus making it more likely for them to abandon their protest; this will aid the company by giving it a reputation for its effectiveness helping it to amass a greater amount of work. At no point are the interests of the public, the building or the occupants taken into mind.

This scenario is no different to the current occupation at Wyndford Primary School, where the security’s tactics have led to the creation of a Fascist Microcosm, in which the occupants’ basic human rights have been stripped away. What has manifested is the antithesis of our governments’ so called liberal ethos. The Security has ensured that geographic mobility is a thing of the past, nobody can enter the school grounds and once one has left there is no return, the only movement being for the collection of food parcels or to have a quiet cigarette. The ability to move around freely allows us to indulge in our basic rights, to practice a religion, to work, to see our children and so on, without freedom of movement the people within the occupation are stripped (though maybe willingly) of these rights. The occupants have become pseudo-slaves.

Surveillance is also being used at the occupation, so that criminal activity can be caught on film. Yet the public’s money is ill spent, as any damage done to the building is merely superficial for the council plans to demolish it. There is also little risk to public or occupant safety as the general feeling in the Maryhill area is one of support for a justified occupation. Surveillance instead acts to remove any sense of privacy the occupants may have, preventing any escalation in the protest in an attempt to criminalise it.

The limited access to the occupation means that one can only speculate on the other tactics that security is using, but from personal experience (occupying a building at the University of St Andrews in an attempt to stop the University’s discriminative policies towards Palestine), it will not be mere guess-work. It is likely that the security will be carrying out ‘safety checks’ where they will inspect the building during hours of sleep, checking that no property is being damaged regardless of the fact that the property is being demolished by the council. This disrupts the protesters sleep patterns making morale easier to destroy. In the St Andrews Occupation they even resorted to an early morning fire drill. They may also attempt to instate other useless rules, such as keeping the building clean with the removal of footwear, as well as constant reminders that the floor needs to be vacuumed etc. Yet these rules only act to motivate the occupiers further and compliance with them would do very little to distort or crush the occupants aims.

Nonetheless it is easy to forget that the security firm’s draconian ruling within the Wyndford Occupation stems directly from the council, in fact it seems that the Security are held quite highly in the minds of the occupants, probably because they offer extra company and on the basis that they are ‘only doing their jobs’. The St Andrews Occupation had a similar feeling; rightly we blamed the University for the Policies the security employed, as the Wyndford Occupiers rightly blame the council. The council has even pursued its folly without the use of puppets, cutting the water supply on the fourth day of the occupation, council workers deceived the occupants by stating they were there to ‘check out a gas leak’. Water is inherent to human survival and therefore this is the most outrageous step so far and a blatant attempt to force the occupiers out. The occupants will now need to rely on a greater amount of handouts and the lack of running water will cause hygiene levels to decrease.

However it would be too simplistic to state that the Wyndford Occupation is doomed due to the council’s onslaught of deception, rotten tactics and their brutal dismissal of human rights. Both the council and the security have not considered the possibility that an occupation is the modern day equivalent of taking up arms or even martyrdom; it indeed seems to be the ultimate manifestation of the occupant’s beliefs. They have also dismissed the fact that the Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign has been a prime factor in rebuilding the Wyndford community, social cohesion is at an all time high, and this is unlikely to be quelled overnight. When ‘dancing on a volcano’ one finds that the politics of hope are amidst their neighbours, it would take an earth shattering blow to move the parents on the Wyndford Estate from their cause.

By James Morris

Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Wyndford Primary School Re-Occupation

Parents re-occupied Wyndford Primary School (Maryhill, Glasgow) on Friday after its official closure.

Water has now been cut off, and the occupants are in need of supplies, so anybody in the area is encouraged to take anything they can to the occupants.

More details on the occupation can be found here

And more news will follow in the near future...

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Crunch Time for Trident - Sing Out For Peace - 20th June

'Join with us (CND) to march and sing for peace and against the Government's plan to spend billions of pounds on nuclear weapons.

Saturday, 20 June 2009, 11:00am - 2:00pm

11 am Assemble George Square Glasgow
11.30 am March Off from city centre to Kelvingrove Park

12.30 pm Sing Out for Peace, Kelvingrove Park

Compere Dave Anderson. Choirs including Protest in Harmony and Euradyce.

Organised by Scotland's for Peace'

Quoting Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament

Scottish Socialist Party to Stand Candidate in Glasgow North East by-election

'A well-attended meeting of Scottish Socialist Party members last night voted to stand a candidate in the forthcoming Glasgow North East Westminster by-election, triggered by the resignation of Michael Martin.

The Scottish Socialist Party has consistently fought elections since our formation nearly 11 years ago. We are determined to give the people of Glasgow North East a socialist alternative to all the parties of greed and profiteering.

With daily bulletins on the stench of greed and corruption rising from Westminster, we will stand a socialist candidate pledged to remain on a skilled worker’s wage, nothing more, to stay in touch with working class people who suffer some of the worst levels of poverty in Europe.

With New Labour and the Tories competing in an obscene auction of job losses, pay cuts and the slaughter of public services, the SSP will demand a 10 per cent wealth tax on the millionaires to help fund jobs and services.

We will demand the Scottish government stand up for Scotland, mobilise the Scottish people and defy £500m of Westminster public sector cuts, instead of playing pass-the-blame at the expense of workers’ jobs and community services.

With Glasgow Labour council ripping the hearts out of several local communities through closure of schools and nurseries, and the SNP government standing silent in the shadows whilst class sizes increase and education worsens, the SSP will demand class sizes of 20 or less for all age-groups, and investment in local community schools, as part of our vision of an independent socialist Scotland that puts kids before cash, people before profit.

By Richie Venton - 17th June 2009'


Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Fife and Dundee European Election Results

Fife: -

Electorate: 278,380
Turnout: 28.6%
Valid Votes: 79,239
Rejected papers: 322

Votes for SSP: 587

Dundee: -

Turnout: 26.9%

Votes for SSP: 372

Monday, 8 June 2009

European Election Results

The Scottish Socialist Party gained 10,404 votes in the recent European Elections (0.9% of all votes), although a drop of 4.3% since the last European Elections in 2004, it was still a large success with parties such as the NPA (the New Anti-Capitalist Party whom the SSP is linked with) gaining 4.9% of French Votes.

Thanks to all those who voted.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Recent News

(Sorry for Lack of Posting - Internet has been 'Down')

Taycoast SSP members have been highly active these past few weeks in preparation for the European Elections (last Thusday) with stalls having been held in Perth, Cupar and St Andrews. As well as the extensive leafletting of St Andrews before and during election day.

Results for the European Elections are out tomorrow, thanks for everyone's support for the Make Greed History Campaign.

Thursday, 21 May 2009

SSP's European Election Rallies

The SSP's European Election Rallies will be taking place as follows:

Glasgow: Tuesday 26th May, 7.30pm
Piper In The Square, George Square
Scottish Socialist Party candidate Nick McKerrell will be speaking alongside a Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaigner and a member of the New Anti-Capitalist Party (France).

Dundee: Wednesday 27th May, 7.30pm
Queens Hotel, 160 Nethergate
Angela Gorrie SSP Candidate will be joined by John McAllion and a member of the New Anti-Capitalist Party.

Edinburgh: Thursday 28th May, 7.30pm
The Melting Pot, 5 Rose Street
SSP Candidates Colin Fox and Raphie de Santos will be accompanied by post office worker Willie Marshall and a member of the New Anti-Capitalist Party.

Friends and comrades are encouraged to attend, all are welcome...

Remember to visit the Make Greed History Hompage

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Make Greed History Update

The Make Greed History (SSP European Elections Campaign) was officially launched on the 13th of May in Dynamic Earth Edinburgh attended by former MSP for the Lothians Colin Fox (top of the SSP EU Election List), the SSP’s youngest candidate Angela Gorrie and Willie Marshall Secretary of Scotland No.2 Branch CWU (Postal).The campaign is now well under way with the party being featured in the BBC's Politics Today and by an array of news sources. Our Election Broadcast will take place on the 21st of May on BBC 2 at 17:55 and BBC 1 at 18:55.

However the SSP need to raise £15,000 to pay for the election campaign. To date we have raised £11,500 from our members, supporter and friends for the campaign fund.
If you wish to help the SSP in the Euro Elections you can make a financial contribution* to the fund by texting Jim McVicar your donation details to 07810205747 with your e mail address, he willl get back to you with the details of how to pay your donation to the SSP Euro Election Fund.

*The SSP can only accept financial donations from UK registered voters

Pictures from the Campaighn Launch (taken by Eddie Truman and Craig Maclean):

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

St Andrews Make Greed History Stall Success

Three Taycoast Branch SSP members along with two members of the University of St Andrews' Left Society ran a successful Make Greed History stall this Monday to help gain local interest in the campaign.

It was recieved generally well by the public with the group gaining a few hundred signatures for a 'Say No to Privatising the Post Office' petition, as well as handing out numerous campaign leaflets.

It is hoped that the five will meet again prior to election day (details will be left on this blog for anyone else interested in attending).

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Make Greed History Stall - St Andrews - This Monday

There will be a Make Greed History (SSP European Elections) Stall in St Andrews this Monday from 10.30am till mid-afternoon.

We will be distributing Make Greed History Leaflets, selling copies of the Scottish Socialist Voice and attempting to gain stickers for the Make Greed History Petition.

If you are interested in getting involved and coming to help at the stall meet across from St Andrews Post Office (South Street), near to Holy Trinity Church, or contact James (07854444640).

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Sign the Make Greed History Petition

Quoting Make Greed History:

'We, the undersigned, support the call by the Make Greed History campaign for a one-off, 10 per cent wealth tax on every millionaire across the EU to create jobs and end recession.

According to the World Wealth Report 2008, Europe’s ‘High Net Worth Individuals’ (those with at least 1 million in cash assets) last year owned a total of trillion. Last year, a ten per cent levy would have raised 1 trillion dollars.

Even allowing for reductions in personal wealth of up to one third as a result of the global financial crash, a ten per cent wealth tax on the rich could create at least 5 million new jobs. That in turn would boost the wider economy and lift Europe out of recession without any extra government debt or spending cuts.

Big problems need big solutions. A European-wide wealth tax is a big idea whose time is long overdue.'

Sign the petition here.

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Students Protest Against Exxon

On Saturday May 2nd, day two of the St Andrews Economic Forum, or SAEF, a handful of students from the University of St Andrews Left Society protested against ExxonMobil, one of the sponsors of the conference. The group leafleted outside Lower Parliament Hall, where the conference was taking place, and managed to converse with attendees about ExxonMobil, who are notorious climate change deniers, in addition to being personally responsible for 5% of the world's total carbon emissions, as they entered. Unfortunately, one member of the Left Society (also a member of the SSP), who was a paid attendee, was not allowed to leaflet in the conference; an organizer threatened to chuck him out if he continued to pass out information.

(Written and Photographed by Nikki Duda - Left Society. Edited by James Morris - SSP)

Edinburgh May Day - Big Success

The SSPs European Election Campaign - Make Greed History had its first outing yesterday where the parties banners took pride of place in the Edinburgh May Day March (celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Cuban Revolution).

Hundreds turned out to participate in and watch the march and rally, giving the SSP a superb chance to start distributing campaign leaflets which were received with pleasure and support.

Click Here To Visit The Make Greed History Homepage

Monday, 27 April 2009

May Day 2009 - Edinburgh (2nd of May)

Assemble East Market Street (Edinburgh) at 11:30

March at Noon

Rally at Scottish Parliament

Speakers: Maria del Carmen Barroso Gonzalez (Cuban Parliamentary Deputy), Hilary Wainwright (Editor of Red Pepper), Matt Wrack (General Secretary of the Fire Brigades Union), Mark Lyons (Unite Convenor for Grangemouth Oil Refinery), Colin Fox (Edinburgh May Day Committee, and Joint National Spokesperson of the SSP).

Music: Voice of the Black Knife

Comedy: Vladimir MacTavish

As well as Stands and Stalls...

For more information visit -

Bus Timetables for Fife

Colin Fox Tops SSP List for Euro Election

SSP co-national spokesperson Colin Fox will head the party's list for the European elections on June 4th.

1. Colin Fox (Edinburgh South)
2. Angela Gorrie (Dundee West)
3. Johanna Dind (Edinburgh South)
4. Nick McKerrell (Glasgow Shettleston)
5. Raphie de Santos (Edinburgh North)
6. Felicity Garvie (Central Fife)

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Glasgow Protests Deepen

The Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign has called city-wide protests outside the schools and nurseries threatened with closure, at 3pm on Monday 27th April – as reports confirm that Labour plans further school closures.

Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign organiser, Richie Venton, today said:

“Spineless Labour councillors voted to close down 22 schools and nurseries last week, but they won’t find it so easy to implement their scandalous decision!

“Far from being defeated, we are defiant. The Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign has a whole raft of protests planned, starting with a city-wide series of human rings around the schools and nurseries they want to shut. Our defiant message is: ‘Labour can vote to ignore the public, to shut our schools, but we shall not be moved’.

“And as reports confirm what we have warned of since January – that anything up to 34 more Glasgow schools could face closure in the next year or two – we appeal to parents from those schools and communities to join our protests, to add power to our battle to defy, obstruct and reverse the closures.

“This show of continued defiance is only one strand to our struggle.

“We are pursuing legal challenges to a brutally flawed procedure.

“And we are taking our case to the Scottish parliament. The Scottish government should come out clearly in opposition to these closures, wield its political power to demand they be reversed, and side with the people of Glasgow against the Labour council’s vandalism. The Glasgow SOS Campaign plans a lobby of the parliament to seek support in the next few weeks.”

For more info contact Richie Venton on 07828 278 093 or at

Friday, 24 April 2009

Glasgow Primary School Protests Continue

Glasgow Save Our Schools Press Release: -

Fury has erupted amongst parents, carers and communities after Labour councillors voted to close primaries and nurseries, despite the mass opposition movement of the past 3 months.

The Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign has agreed an immediate plan of action at an emergency meeting this afternoon.

Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign organiser, Richie Venton, today said:

“Labour councillors have shown absolutely spineless careerism by bowing to the dictatorship of their Labour group leader, Steven Purcell. They will rue the day!

“At the secretive meeting of the Labour councillors last week, they voted by 31:6 to proceed with 22 closures. That means 6 of them felt the closure package is rotten, the tens of thousands who oppose the closures are right, and they hoped to save their electoral skins by making a gesture of opposition behind closed doors. But today Labour councillors all toed the Labour party line, obeyed orders and ignored their own consciences. Shame on them for their cowardice - for putting their Labour party careers before kids!

“They have voted to close down schools and nurseries, but they won’t find it so easy to implement their scandalous decision!

“Across the road from the Council meeting, the Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign met, with representatives from schools across the city, and decided a plan of action to defy, defeat and reverse these closures.

“We will launch a new round of peaceful direct action protest, with unity in the community, starting with a city-wide Hands Around Our Schools protest on Monday at 3pm, declaring that the councillors might vote for closures, but ‘we shall not be moved’!

“We are seeking professional help with legal challenges to a brutally flawed procedure.

“And we are taking our case to the Scottish parliament. The Scottish government should come out clearly in opposition to these closures, wield its political power to demand they be reversed, and side with the people of Glasgow against the Labour council’s unprincipled axe-wielders. The Glasgow SOS Campaign plans a lobby of the parliament to seek support in the next few weeks.”

For more info contact Richie Venton on 07828 278 093 or at

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Prisme Workers Success

Statement by the occupying workforce.

'After 51 days in occupation the Dundee Prisme workers have decided to end their occupation. The reason we have taken this decision is that it looks like we have secured funding to take our co-op venture forward and save the jobs that we thought had gone.

Our occupation began to secure our redundancy payments and other monies that were denied to us by our employer when we were sacked. However, during the occupation we also decided to fight to safeguard our jobs because we believed there was a viable business, even if our predecessors did not. It looks like we have achieved this aim. A new company Discovery Packaging and Design Ltd is going to be launched on 1st May 2009.

This victory would not have been possible if it had not been for the support we have had from the general public, trade unionists, socialists and many others. This support and solidarity has been overwhelming and has helped give us the energy and determination to carry on for more than 7 weeks.

We said at the beginning of this that we were little people who had refused to be little anymore. We are proud of what we have achieved and our dignity is intact. We showed we would not be walked over by an uncaring employer.

We want to thank all those who have supported our struggle over the last 51 days, your support has been invaluable. Thanks once again to you all.

The Prisme workers will be leaving the factory together and united at 5pm on Friday 24th April.'

Scottish Student Left Forum CANCELLED

The Scottish Student Left Forum planned for this weekend at St Andrews University has been cancelled.

In an email sent out to the Left Society's mailing list who were organising the event, Patrick O'Hare (President and SSP Member) stated that the cancellation was due to a 'lack of confirmed guests' going onto say 'It seems people are too busy with essays, exams and other stuff, even though they all said it was a good idea'. However Mr O'Hare did not rule out the possibility of the event taking place at a later date stating 'Hopefully its something we could try again next semester when people have more time'.

Nikki Duda (one of the main organisers) said that members of the Socialist Workers Party although interested could not attend due to other arrangements, and that another large group had also pulled out of the proceedings.

It seems that the event will now take place in autumn (if at all), when Leftist Students will have the first chance to come together as a collective group.

*Picture of Occupation for Palestine Earlier This Year

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Executive Committee Meeting - Sunday

There will be an SSP EC meeting this Sunday at 1pm in the Albion Bar, Barnton St, Stirling.

All members are welcome.

The main agenda items will be the European Elections, if one is interested in helping with the campaign it would be a good idea to attend or email

Save Our Schools Protests Continue

Quoting - The Save Our Schools Glasgow Blog

"Protest at City Treasurer’s Surgery

A group of Parents, carers, and campaigners gathered outside Gordon Matheson’s Surgery tonight in Rose Street. While protesters were chanting outside, 5 of the parents managed to speak with him to put their side of the story across. One person let him know that she had voted labour all her life, but never again. In fact from now on during any elections she’ll be standing outside polling stations campaigning against labour.

24hour vigil from 12noon Weds until the start of the Demo/BLOCKADE.

Parents will be taking it in shifts to hold a vigil outside the city chambers until the start of the demo on Thursday.

Rooftop Protest in Ruchill - Please visit to show support
07949 383 019"

Monday, 20 April 2009

New Primary School Occupations in Glasgow

Quoting (Save Our Schools Glasgow)

"Some details may be incorrect - will update when possible (5pm 20/04/2009) .

There are occupations ongoing at Our Lady of Assumption (OLA) in Ruchill and at Victoria Primary in Govanhill.At OLA.. about 4 or 5 parents went on to the roof in the middle of the night last night and are still there, planning to stay until Thursday. They have one tent but need sleeping bags, camping stoves, torches etc.

'Parents also occupied Victoria Primary in the city’s south side, with some chaining themselves to railings.'"

News stories regarding the occupations can be found at: -

The recent occupations at Wyndford and St Gregory's Primary Schools ended last Saturday, videos of theses occupations can be found at

Scottish Student Left Forum

After an unprecedented year of activism, the Left Society at the University of St Andrews is welcoming leftist students from across Scotland to the Scottish Student Left Forum this weekend. It is the first event of its kind following the example of the Convention of the Left in Manchester last year.

The itinerary includes workshops and discussions on University privatisation, the influence of the military, tuition fees, democratic education, narrow teaching as class warfare and cutting links with imperialism.

The event is planned to coincide with Reclaim Your Education (Global Week of Action), and a good attendance is expected with student groups from all over Scotland being invited (and all individuals being welcomed). It is also hoped that another University will take on the role of organising a similar event next year.

News on the event will follow...

For more information visit: -


Taycoast Branch Blog Created

The Taycoast Branch of the SSP has now started a Blog.

Feel free to share ideas, news, comments etc. either here or by emailing James at

More to come soon.