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Cover art by Jacob Stead

Summer 2019

Table of Contents


Simon Baker, RIP

In preparation for this issue, Tribune interviewed film-maker and activist Simon Baker. Sadly, he passed away before we went to print. We remember his life, his work, and his extraordinary contribution to our movement.

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Lauren Townsend

The Real Boris Johnson

To many in the media world, Boris Johnson is a figure of fun. But the threat he represents to workers across Britain is no joke.

Sarah Doyle

Reinstate George Gore

The victimisation of a shop steward at a Liverpool factory shows that bosses are still determined to break up organised workers where they can.

Chris McLaughlin

The Zombie Parliament

As the Palace of Westminster crumbles around it, parliament is in need of similar renovation works.

Matt Zarb-Cousin

How to Beat Boris

If Remainers are to win a possible second referendum campaign, they’ll need to break with the establishment figures who sank the first

Marcus Barnett

Workers Against ISS

Agency workers in London hospitals are so poorly treated that their union set up a foodbank to help them. But now, they are fighting back.

Lloyd Russell-Moyle

Passing the Buck on Yemen

After years of British government complicity in Saudi Arabia’s brutal war on Yemen, the court of appeal has suspended arms sales. But the fight for justice is far from over.


James Meadway


After decades of deindustrialisation, the next Labour government can reboot the areas left behind — by laying foundations for a digital industrial revolution.

Lynsey Hanley

Barbara Castle: Transport Minister

After two years as international development secretary, Barbara Castle took transport — an unloved government brief — and used it to vindicate Labour’s purpose in power.

Alex Niven

Has Labour Lost the North?

Deindustrialisation, privatisation, and then austerity produced decades of decline in the north of England. Labour must fight its corner again — before it’s too late.

Laura Pidcock

A Movement to Win

The next Labour government will provide the foundations for a new era of trade unionism in Britain. But it will be up to workers to build it.

Ian Lavery

My Time in the Miners’ Strike

In 1984, Labour Party Chair Ian Lavery was an ordinary miner ready to stand with his fellow workers. What he experienced during the strike changed him forever.

Caoimhe Hale

The Soldiers With No Name

We remember the incredible lives of Marcel Moore and Claude Cahun — Marxist artists, queer pioneers and anti-fascist resistors.

Charlotte Lydia-Riley

Use Your Head

The Labour election posters on show at Manchester’s People’s History Museum offer a glimpse into the party’s promise of a better world.


Meagan Day

The Workers’ Sabbatical

How about this for a demand? Work for six years and you get a whole paid year off to do what you want.

Grace Blakeley

Globalisation — Or Global Justice

Under capitalist globalisation, Western states and corporations continue to plunder the Global South. That’s not internationalism, it’s imperialism.

Antonia Jennings

Winning the Green New Deal

Socialists fighting for bold solutions to the climate crisis must chart a course between co-option and marginalisation.

Danny Dorling

How to Solve the Housing Crisis

It might not be sexy, but the answer to the endemic housing crisis not just in Britain but across the West is something relatively simple: effective property taxes.

Paul Dennett

The World Turned Upside Down

Vast swathes of Britain are owned by a tiny oligarchy. Yet land privatisation continues to drain our commonwealth. The next Labour government has to change all that.

Solomon Hughes

The Same Old Lib Dems

The Liberal Democrats are back as a ‘progressive’ alternative to Labour. But their leading lights are still as right-wing as ever.

Lester Holloway

Corbynism and Anti-Racism

A socialist-led Labour Party has a unique opportunity to put forward a platform that would eradicate racial disadvantage.

Dave Ward

Changing the Future, Now

Technology can liberate workers — or it can be used to control them. Which path it follows will depend on the labour movement.

Len McCluskey

The Challenge of Deindustrialisation

Deindustrialisation has led to stagnating wages, workplace insecurity and declining union membership. The next Labour government must turn the tide.


Rose-Anne Gush

A Letter from Vienna

The pleasantly dated atmosphere of Vienna is the setting for a politics where history is constantly repeating, and where only the Vengaboys offer an escape from Fascism.

Juliet Jacques

The Return of Rafael Alberti

The leftist poet Rafael Alberti was forced into exile by Franco, but his determination to return symbolised the hopes of the Spanish Republic.

Hannah Proctor

Everything is True, Nothing is Permitted

The results of the notorious ‘Stalinist Stanford Prison Experiment’, DAU, were finally shown to the public this spring. What does this blurring of fantasy and reality achieve?

Rhian E. Jones

Every Day a Day Out

Events like the Durham Miners’ Gala are as much about a still-possible vision of the future, as they are a product of the traditions of the past.

Sarah Weston & Isaac Rose

Collective Actions

The Salford Community Theatre is building experiments in collective power, one play at a time.

Douglas Murphy

Garden Cities or Revolution

The Addison Act of 1919 created the basis for mass council housing, exorcising the spectre of communism through spacious suburban houses.

Carl Neville

Tony Blair Made Me Hardcore

The ‘rave nostalgia’ film Beats provides an image of collective joy with politicised resonances in the present.

Owen Hatherley

Red Library: Europe

This issue’s Red Library explores Europe’s borders, from Ireland to the Balkans, and the prospects of a pan-European left.