Joined: October 20th, 2015, 9:04 pm

October 2nd, 2016, 10:17 pm #11

As well as his work in the West Midlands, we should also recall his role in the People's March for Jobs. His energy and organising ability was critical to one of the left's big set-piece events that still remains as a spiritual source of inspiration.

Also, I wonder if the 83 march, with its pathetic turnout at Hyde Park, was a turning point for some, including Carter, in which the MT line on the end of the proletariat - anchored by Lane and Hobsbawm - started to resonate at a recognisable pitch.
The first People's March for Jobs (1981) which - I think - was Martin Jacques' idea and which Pete Carter played a central role in organising was a huge success.
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Commentator
Commentator

October 3rd, 2016, 9:18 am #12

The problem with Pete Carter was that he didn't fit his critics' 'ideal type'. Here was a working-class communist, a trade union militant and organiser with an impressive record in taking on construction industry bosses, who did not subscribe to the cult of the infallibility of either the CPSU or Arthur Scargill. Obviously, he must have been a wrong 'un.
Fair points, Francis, as far as they go. It wasn't Carter's lack of belief in the infallibility of Scargill and the CPSU that was the real problem for those of us active in the CPGB and trade union ovement at the time. It was 1) His role in promoting the Euros' line during the miners' strike in arguing that the struggle for solidarity industrial action was "ultra-leftist", syndicalist and should not be given any priority, that mass picketing was out of date and doomed to fail etc. etc. 2) His role in continually attacking and sniping at Scargill and the NUM leadership (which the Euros did all the time at internal party meetings - I heard them at many of them). 3) His failure to challenge the wrong priorities during the strike - the CPGB's leadership spent as much time and resources attacking the Morning Star (which had its priorities right) as it did attacking the NCB and the Tory government - the number of anti-Star leaflets, brochures and bulletins far outnumbered the pro-NUM ones, for example). 4) His part in a Eurcommunist factional drive over years before the strike to disarm the CPGB ideologically, which led to a real degenration in the party's political analysis, organisation and mobilisation. Where were the preparations for the miners' strike? Where were the CPGB publications exposing the government's plans? Where were the trade union aggregates to win trade union solidarity? I know many supporters of the CPGB leadership, and many Eurcommunists, worked tremendously hard to win public support for the miners and their case - but the party could and should have done a lot more, especially on the trade union front, instead of spending so much energy attacking Scargill, Heathfield and the Morning Star.
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Harsanyi_Janos
Harsanyi_Janos

October 3rd, 2016, 5:48 pm #13

The first People's March for Jobs (1981) which - I think - was Martin Jacques' idea and which Pete Carter played a central role in organising was a huge success.
If I recall, there were almost 200,000 people in attendance at Hyde Park for the first march.

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Guy Burgess
Guy Burgess

October 3rd, 2016, 7:38 pm #14

and possibly over 100,000 at the 1983 rally. That at least is the official TUC figure:

http://www.unionhistory.info/timeline/T ... rn=7000133


as for its impact this contemporary Conservative Research Department paper has mixed feelings:

http://fc95d419f4478b3b6e5f-3f71d0fe2b6 ... %20f47.pdf


Guy Burgess
Eton & Cambridge
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Kim Philby
Kim Philby

October 3rd, 2016, 10:59 pm #15

What is even more curious is that Pete Carter disappears from the political scene soon after the demise of the CPGB that he had so helped to bring about and then reappears, according to Seumas Milne, in the company of none other than Roger Windsor.

As Milne says: "Even more controversial is the case of Roger Windsor, the NUM's chief executive during the 1984-5 strike, who was named in parliament as an undercover agent "sent into the NUM to destabilise and sabotage the union at its most critical juncture". Windsor, who had himself filmed embracing Colonel Gadafy at the height of the strike, falsely claimed later that Scargill had used Libyan money to pay off a mortgage - tying the union up in a string of legal investigations. Windsor subsequently decamped to France, where he has been found by the French courts to have signed documents he claimed were forged by Scargill".

In France Windsor set himself up as an estate agent. According to Milne, Carter "visited Windsor in France in the wake of the 1990 Mirror-Cook Report and later put some property advice work his way". (page 206 :The Enemy Within: The Secret War Against the Miners: Seumas Milne 1994).

pip,pip,


H A R Philby
(Col.ret'd)
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Palmiro Togliatti
Palmiro Togliatti

October 4th, 2016, 9:25 am #16

and possibly over 100,000 at the 1983 rally. That at least is the official TUC figure:

http://www.unionhistory.info/timeline/T ... rn=7000133


as for its impact this contemporary Conservative Research Department paper has mixed feelings:

http://fc95d419f4478b3b6e5f-3f71d0fe2b6 ... %20f47.pdf


Guy Burgess
Eton & Cambridge
The Conservative Research Department reliance on the Economic League's "2 minute news roundup" is laughable in hindsight. Never-the-less, it was a CP initiative, so they were right in that regard.

Ironically, if you take the ruling-class bias and anti-communism out of the document they make a good case for the emergence of the BDA.

And, inconsequentially, but interesting of itself is the reminder of the 'paranoia' over extremism etc that was recently revisited in light of Momentum and the alleged Trot entryism.

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White man in the Hammersmith Palais
White man in the Hammersmith Palais

October 4th, 2016, 1:50 pm #17

This is a very important piece of film about the 1972 Builders Strike as well as the conspiracy trial that came out of it.

There is a rare appearance (I believe) from the dreadful Pete Carter as well as some interesting footage of a march and speeches as well as UCATT activists getting a chance to put their case.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wI_QmOnYbFs
Interesting debate but can anyone name the other building workers in the film.
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Jonathan Evans
Jonathan Evans

October 4th, 2016, 2:21 pm #18

I know nothing of the man bar the wiki entry, what made him dreadful?
He was our top man in the CPGB at the time.

A useful idiot rather than an arch manipulator.
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Mervyn Drage
Mervyn Drage

October 17th, 2016, 3:46 am #19

As well as his work in the West Midlands, we should also recall his role in the People's March for Jobs. His energy and organising ability was critical to one of the left's big set-piece events that still remains as a spiritual source of inspiration.

Also, I wonder if the 83 march, with its pathetic turnout at Hyde Park, was a turning point for some, including Carter, in which the MT line on the end of the proletariat - anchored by Lane and Hobsbawm - started to resonate at a recognisable pitch.
Disagree, Peoples March in 1983 had a large turn out in London as we marched through the streets.
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Joined: May 13th, 2005, 7:50 am

October 17th, 2016, 9:53 am #20

Welcome back Merv - hope all goes well with you!
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