Where is the Jeremy Corbyn Labour Party revolution going to end?Gerry HassanScotttish Review, September 29th 2016 Jeremy Corbyn and Labour have some major positives going for them. He has been re-elected Labour leader with a huge majority in an election in which over half a million people voted. On the wave of a surge of excitement and engagement, Labour’s membership has risen to 650,000 - over four times that of the Tories, and representing the largest political party in all Europe. On top of that Jeremy Corbyn is clearly a different kind of politician. He is untainted by
Nine Months in the Death of Labour: A Response to the CorbynistasGerry HassanScottish Review, June 28th 2016 These are surprising times in Britain and its politics. Cameron gone. England and Wales dragging the UK out of the EU. The England football team defeated by Iceland. And somehow Jeremy Corbyn was meant to be the antidote to these political times. He was different from the typical 21st century politician, a throwback to the days when all male left-wingers were like underpaid sociology lecturers - badly dressed and presented, rambling but affectionate and with their heart in the right place.
A Time for Boldness and Honesty: 21st Century Scottish RadicalismGerry HassanScottish Review, July 23rd 2014 The independence referendum has seen an explosion of radical and progressive thinking and activism. Where there was once silence and disillusion, now there is hope, excitement and imagination. There is the generosity and pluralism of National Collective, the breadth and reach of the Radical Independence Campaign (RIC), and the energy and dynamism of the Jimmy Reid Foundation. Then there is a wider set of trends looking at how to develop a deeper democracy from the work of So Say Scotland and its Citizen’s
Radical Nostalgia Scotland and Why We Can’t Go Back to the 1970sGerry HassanScottish Review, February 5th 2014 Scotland’s current debate on independence comprises many conversations. They centre on what we were, are and could be, and who did what to whom in the past, and what it means about where we are now, and what we could become in the future. Many of these aspects were to the fore last week at a Jim Sillars-Alex Neil event to launch Jim’s new book, ‘In Place of Fear II’, under the auspices of ‘Yes Airdrie’. On a cold Thursday night,
Who is the Real Gordon Brown and Why It Matters? Gerry HassanThe Scotsman, August 3rd 2013 Gordon Brown dominated Scottish politics for several decades. Now gone from the stage, he has only left memories and the issue of his legacy. Brown is a fascinating figure - a very public person, but private; moral in his deliberations yet filled with caution; supposedly radical but profoundly conservative. Kevin Toolis’s new play ‘Confessions of Gordon Brown’ (on at the Pleasance during the Festival) attempts to get inside the mind and psyche of Brown. This is a potent idea and something writers
Time for a Radical Scotland to challenge our forces of conservatismGerry HassanThe Scotsman, June 1st 2013 Scotland has long prided itself on its radical and socialist traditions, from Red Clydeside and UCS to rent strikes, occupations and the campaign which achieved the Scottish Parliament. This week Alex Salmond faced more criticism over his corporation tax policy from predictable quarters such as Johann Lamont and less predictable ones such as pro-independence supporters and economists Jim and Margaret Cuthbert and Council of Economic Advisers member Professor Joseph Stiglitz. This raises all sorts of questions: about the nature and dynamics of
The Radical Scotland Tradition and Stalinism’s LegacyGerry HassanThe Scotsman, March 2nd 2013 Next Tuesday a strange but important moment will be celebrated in a number of capitals and places in the world: the 60th anniversary of the death of Soviet leader and dictator Joseph Stalin. Stalin’s death in 1953 was a cataclysmic event which sent ripples of uncertainty through the then monolithic Soviet bloc. First the Berlin workers came out in protest against Soviet rule, to be followed by the Hungarian and Polish springs of 1956. It resulted in Nikita Khrushchev’s famous speech denouncing Stalin’s ‘cult of the
The End of the Revolutionary Line: The Demise of Tommy SheridanGerry HassanOpen Democracy, December 24th 2010 The jury in the Glasgow High Court has found Tommy Sheridan guilty of perjury. His political career and hopes, whatever his rhetoric, lie in ruins, as does the party he helped found – the Scottish Socialist Party – which he briefly made a semi-potent electoral force. This is the end of a long journey for a revolutionary dream, illusion and fantasy – in which Scotland for a period had the world’s most electorally successful Trotskyite party. It has been three years since