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Do you recall what happened at the beginning of the century? The proposals for the Kinnock Reform were developed and then circulated; all staff unions rejected them for some time and there was a hope that real resistance might develop. Then our biggest opponent signed them behind the backs of staff, other unions. Many among their own rank and file members objected strongly, but union bosses had their way in the end. No consultation, not even notification, just a signature and a handshake with his soon-to-be Lordship.

Within a hundred days of the Kinnock Reform's going into effect, our biggest opponent organized excellent protest meetings against what it had made possible through its signature. They did forget to mention their previous approval of what they were now opposing, but that need not imply dishonesty. It might be caused by a neurological disorder, or by an understandable feeling of shame.

Having an intact memory, I politely asked some of their most prominent members whether they were tacitly admitting to having made a mistake. Their reply; "Of course not. The bosses had threatened to do even worse things if we did not authorize the cuts that they demanded." Had Neville Chamberlain been in a position to speak freely, he might have said that much about Czechoslovakia. It is my view that they simply weakened staff's position in return for delaying an inevitable conflict. Of course, the copious subsidies that our biggest opponent receives from the bosses have no influence on their decisions.

So, what will SID do in such a bind? Suppose the bosses put document A and B on the table. Doc A calls for a 10% cut and B for a 20% cut. They tell us "If SID does not sign Doc A by the deadline, we will unilaterally impose Doc B and you will loose even more than if you surrender." We will leave the table and begin preparations for an intensive campaign of political guerrilla against the cuts. If you enjoy surrender without even the attempt of self defence, you need to vote against SID candidates because we don't go down without a (nonviolent) fight.

Neither unions nor Institutions determine the outcome of such conflicts. Who then? You! If You decide for Yourself what is wrong / right and to fight for what is Your idea of "right", then You have more influence than a billion apathetic people who live in fear of complexity and risk.


What about our middle opponent? Remember their (2004) promise to reform the Luxembourg electoral rules? For two years and three trimesters they received one reminder from me per month. When they made their half-hearted move, the 2007 elections were close at hand. In that context their belated attempt at fulfilling a promise looked too much like a scam to get support from staff and it failed. Of course, the fifty people who were walked into the meeting room of the General Assembly minutes before the vote and all voted against new election rules without having heard any argument did not exactly boost democracy. I wish I could report more about this Kafkaesque/Orwellian incident, but their minders walked them out, never to be seen again. Until the next General Assembly that threatens some big union's power base, that is.

I was more upset about the 34 month delay than about the manipulated GA, so I asked members of our middle opponent "If you had acted swiftly after your 2004 victory your chances would have been much better. Why did you insist on waiting until it was too late because you had lost your credibility? Why?" It took several attempts to obtain a coherent reply, and even what I finally got was not very coherent. I was told that the Treasurer of our little opponent had forbidden them to fulfil their campaign promise. This is the kind of answer that raises many fresh questions. Why would a union put the will of another union's Treasurer ahead of its own for more than two years? Don't ask me, I'm with SID. All through 2004-2007 the majority of our little opponent's members backed new election rules, the majority of its Executive Committee reflected that view, both its President and its Political Secretaries were eager for a more democratic system. Does the Treasurer have the powers of a Svengali , did he slip sodium pentathol into our middle opponent's coffee?

I find no rational explanation for their suicidal behaviour and that worries me a lot.

And the SID alternative? Let's take an example. What were we going to write Dr Mahmoud Ahmadinejad about the Schumann Day executions of 2010 ? "Your Excellency, Please continue your humanitarian efforts to minimize the number of executions in the Islamic Republic."? We left that kind of talk to the professionals of RELEX and the new EEAS . We stuck to the truth; those who kill the defenceless are cowards. We are still breathing and there has been no fatwa. Only a very few weird phone calls from crazies and a ridiculously weak cyber attack against our website. It seems that the Iranian government has driven all the competent hackers into exile or opposition. Let's hope the same thing applies to nuclear technology.

It takes more than empty threats to make us back down. Probably most petty tyrants are not afraid of us. The feeling is mutual.


Look, this is getting boring. Once upon a time, until late 2007, we were their left wing. When the breakup came at last, we took the best and left the rest.

Created by: admin last modification: Saturday 16 of October, 2010 [15:57:41 UTC] by admin

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