Len McCluskey promotes British nationalism
16 November 2019
The Great British labour bureaucracy has spoken! In an outpouring of national chauvinism Len McCluskey has fallen in behind the DUP by posing as an advocate of their strategy of inferring that there will be Loyalist violence against an economic border in the Irish Sea. In this, and more generally, his orientation to pro Brexit voters exhibits a strong whiff of attachment to the remnants of Empire.
Most pointedly his outrageous national chauvinism has again given succour to racists. But it hardly comes as a surprise. The Unite leadership and McCluskey have been openly promoting this reactionary strategy since 2009 when the Lindsey oil refinery dispute saw demonstrators march to the slogan “British jobs for British workers”. Like their Irish versions the British trade union bureaucracy have failed the working class time after time, consistently refusing to confront anti union laws. As recently as June 2019 McCluskey was promoting this economic nationalism, the pale impression of Stalin's socialism in one country, as a credible policy for a full time union bureaucracy that is keen to blame anyone, except themselves, for continuously falling wages and living standards.
For McCluskey, international capital has the freedom to wander the globe doing as it will without any attempt by the leadership of the trade union movement to internationalise their response, despite having organisational bodies for exactly that purpose. Internationalism is beyond their imagination but not that of rank and file trade unionists everywhere.
This is the rebuke McCluskey received from Seema Syeda in June.