Imperialism and the labour aristocracy, from the post war boom to today

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 7. Imperialism and the labour aristocracy, from the post war boom to today

The RCG has developed the concept of the labour aristocracy to explain the stability of ruling class power within the major imperialist states. Our analysis of the Labour Party and trade union movement as the political representatives of the labour aristocracy delineates us from the rest of the British left. The split in the working class is a fact: any theory that seeks to obscure this represents a political concession to opportunism, the political standpoint of the labour aristocracy. Our analysis shows how the mechanism for distributing privilege to the aristocracy has changed over time: through the market in the first half of the century; through state expenditure during the post-war period to the mid-1970s, then once again increasingly through the market. The labour aristocracy serves as a control mechanism over the whole working class; its stultifying effect on working class politics is demonstrated by the complete absence of organised resistance to the Labour government.

Reading

RCG: Manifesto of the Revolutionary Communist Group - Part 2 pp35-50

FRFI 163 Imperialism and the labour aristocracy - Part 3

FRFI 164 Imperialism and the labour aristocracy - Part 4 

FRFI 165 Imperialism and the labour aristocracy - Part 5

FRFI 166 Imperialism and the labour aristocracy - Part 6

Supplementary reading

Labour. A party fit for imperialism, Parts 3 to 6.

RCG: Manifesto of the Revolutionary Communist Group -Part 5 pp 117-128

FRFI 197 Ten years of Labour: Abuse of Power

FRFI 197 The rise of New Labour

FRFI 195 Labour Aristocracy: mythmakers and their mistakes

FRFI 135 New Labour - don’t vote for class enemies

Anti-apartheid: a study in opportunism by Carol Brickley, from Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! 183