Marxism 4: Sunday

My account of the Sunday at Marxism 2016.

INTRODUCTION

Welcome to my fourth post about Marxism 2016 (see here, here and here), focussing on Sunday. Like the previous post, this one will be formatted slightly differently from my usual Marxism posts, again because I wish to focus on two particular meetings.

GETTING THERE AND THE DAY’S PLAN

It being Sunday I was even more generous than usual in allowing for transport problems. In keeping with Sutcliffe’s Second Law of Travelling by Public Transport I therefore had my best journey of the week.

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A sculpture outside Euston station.

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A neoclassical folly, Euston Road

To help explain both my schedule for the day and the rest of this post here is the timetable for Sunday, with my choices marked…

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What I am going to do now is write briefly about meetings 1,2 and 5 before covering the two disability meetings in a bit more detail.

MEETINGS 1, 2 AND 5

My first meeting, Kate Hurford on White supremacy and the creation of “race” – where does racism come from? took place in Clarke Hall, which is on level three of the institute. The speaker was not well but still managed to deliver a very good introduction after which there was a lively debate.

For the second meeting I had chosen Shahrar Ali on How left is green politics? Although I am grateful that both he and Natalie Bennett were speaking at this event, and regret that a timetable clash prevented me from hearing Natalie speak I felt that there were important questions not dealt with, such as the roles of greens in office in various parts of the world (like the Aussie green party doing deals with the Liberal National Party, that country’s equivalent of the Tories). However, this caveat aside I enjoyed this meeting, and have no regrets about attending.

I will be covering meetings 3 and 4 in the next section. Meeting 5, for which I had chosen religion was an interesting meeting.

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Kate Hurford and the chair just before the start of their meeting

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Shahrar Ali and the chair of his meeting.
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Anna Gluckstein (right as you look) and the chair of her meeting on religion.

TWO MEETINGS ABOUT DISABILITY

Both of these two meetings, the first a panel meeting and the second the official launch of Roddy Slorach’s book “A Very Capitalist Condition” were excellent and in their different ways inspiring.

The first meeting started with a number of speakers talking about what they are doing, and about various campaigns before then being opened up for discussion.

Roddy’s meeting (we have previously shared a platform at a public meeting in Norwich) began with him introducing ideas that are contained within his book, which I have since read and enjoyed.

I suffered a double frustration because I had carefully planned contributions for both meetings (there are as yet no meetings at Marxism focussing specifically on autism, although this year the Silberman book was on display – if anyone involved in the organisation the event is reading this please take this as a hint) and did not get to make either although I indicated clearly on both occasions.

AN OUTLINE OF THE UNMADE CONTRIBUTIONS

I had planned two different but linked contributions, each tailored to the specific meeting in question. For the first meeting, which focussed exclusively on campaigns My contribution would have covered the following:

  • A full introduction mentioning my role at NAS West Norfolk and the fact that I am #actuallyautistic and giving details of this blog
  • A skate through some of NAS West Norfolk’s activities including a brief mention of the Positive Autism Awareness Conference and the upcoming launch of adult activities and the inaugural Autism Awareness Cup.
  • Finishing with an account of the campaign around the Fermoy unit and our role in it, emphasisng that the Fermoy remains open.

For Roddy’s meeting I would again have given a full introduction before going on to cover:

  • The envisaged but not yet fully realized sequence of: Awareness – Understanding – Acceptance.
  • Emphasised that autism is a condition not a disorder – it is not a malfunctiion, it is a different operating system .
  • Might have produced the line ‘nothing about us without us’
  • Planned to finish by emphasising that different is not a synonym for lesser.

I finish this section by re-emphasising that these were two excellent meetings.

THE LAST EVENING

I stayed fairly late after the end of the final meeting, and was delighted to make the acquaintance of several people involved in disability activism during this period.

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Saturday Sharing

A short post mainly devoted to sharing links, but with some photos also included.

INTRODUCTION

This is a brief post, principally to share some interesting and important links, At the end, there will be a few photos from in and around King’s Lynn.

LINKS

Today’s link’s divide naturally into two sections, starting with…

#JezWeDid

Yes everyone – #JezWeCan is now #JezWeDid – Jeremy Corbyn not only won the election outright in the first round, he did so with an absolute landslide, leaving even the 57% achieved in the first round by Tony Blair when he won the leadership behind him. I have three links that relate to this news…

  1. From yesterday, courtesy of Vox Political, comes this story about people in Guildford approving of policies until they were told whose they were (Corbyn’s), at which point the hypocrites sought to back track from their earlier support.
  2. My second link is this offering from Green Party leader Natalie Bennett immediately after the Corbyn victory was confirmed.
  3. This, from dwpexamination, is a detailed analysis of the breakdown of the votes in this leadership election, which I have chosen to accompany with this infographic courtesy of George Aylett on twitter:
    JCLandslide

OTHER LINKS

Tax Research UK have produced this fine piece emphasising that public services are not like business.

Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) have produced this piece about happenings in Waltham Forest, ending with the following appeal:

If you are a former ILF recipient, living in the Waltham Forest Council area can you please email us at mail@dpac.uk.net, or if you know someone who is, could you please ask them to contact us.

The Guardian have produced this about the sale of council houses

The folks at politicalsift.have produced this piece under the title “We Are Condemned To be Free“.

This piece from disabilitynewsservice is both a confirmation of the fact that the Cameron government has made history by causing Britain to become the first country to be investigated by the UN Commision on the Rights of People with Disabilities and some detail and why this is happening.

Finally, via Huffington Post, comes this piece written by a mother going public about her daughter’s autism diagnosis.

PHOTOGRAPHS

Just before putting up some of my more recent pictures, a reminder that tomorrow is Heritage Open Day, featuring 57 sites in King’s Lynn…

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Sunday, Monday, Today

An account of the last few days, with some excellent pictures, some important links and a great infographic courtesy of Dr Lisa Sulsenti.

INTRODUCTION

My last blog post was about my cousin Olivia’s wedding on Saturday. This post tells of Sunday, Monday and today, with plenty of pictures. Also, I have some links and infographics to share. Talking of sharing, I hope that some of you will choose to share this post as well.

KEGWORTH HOTEL AND CONFERENCE CENTRE

While possessed of precisely zero architectural appeal, the Kegworth Hotel and Conference Centre is clean and comfortable…

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I have plenty of good pictures from inside the hotel…

This is a 24 hour roman numeral clock - can you spot the deliberate mistake in the numbering?
This is a 24 hour roman numeral clock – can you spot the deliberate mistake in the numbering?

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Detail from the ornamental glasswork at the reception desk.
Detail from the ornamental glasswork at the reception desk.

My bedroom had some pictures as well…

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You will note a degree of duplication between the public pictures and those in the rooms!
You will note a degree of duplication between the public pictures and those in the rooms!

SUNDAY LUNCH

My cousin Richard and his fiancee Ida are off to her native Sweden soon, and he had the idea of a farewell pub lunch at the Plough in Normanton on Soar. Eventually after a few cancellations, 12 of us were there for this excellent meal, which we ate outside overlooking the river itself, much used by boats and birds…

Richard and Ida
Richard and Ida

I have lots of splendid pictures from this event, and both the food and drink were magnificent.

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Tables overlooking the Soar
Tables overlooking the Soar

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The local product - look up Leciester Rugby Club for more on the name.
The local product – look up Leciester Rugby Club for more on the name.

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As well as boats at surface level, a plane flew high over our heads.
As well as boats at surface level, a plane flew high over our heads.

HOMEWARD BOUND

I travelled back as a passenger in my aunt’s car, since we live very close together in King’s Lynn. Taking pictures while in transit is not easy, but this one worked…

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After helping my aunt to unload her car I walked back to my flat by way of another river on which boat travel is not unknown, the Great Ouse…

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DOWN TIME

Knowing the effect that such a busy weekend would have on me I had taken the precaution of booking this week as leave to enable myself to have some quiet time. Last night was a group meeting for KLASS (more on this in a future blog post), but apart from that it has been a very quiet couple of days.

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To give you an idea of how vast an eyesore this building is, this photo was taken from a point that is a 20-minute walk from the building itself!
To give you an idea of how vast an eyesore this building is, this photo was taken from a point that is a 20-minute walk from the building itself!

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LINKS

I have as usual plenty of links to share with you, starting with…

CONSERVATION

  1. From the Humane Society comes this on banning trophy hunting.
  2. From petitions.whitehouse.gov comes the call for the US Government to do the right thing and extradite Walter Palmer to Zimbabwe so that he can be charged for his crime.
  3. Huffington Post provide this story about a certain Sabrina Corgatelli posing alongside her kills.
  4. And this is thedodo.com’s take on the same story.
  5. From the same source as 4 comes this on Giraffes.
  6. From change.org comes this climate change petition.

OTHER LINKS

From 38Degrees by way of Green Party leader Natalie Bennett, comes a petition entitled “Celebrate suffragettes not serial killers”. I quote the opening paragraph of their explanation and urge you to sign and share:

“A new museum gained planning permission by promising ‘the only dedicated resource in the East End to women’s history’, but has now been unveiled as a venue dedicated to the violent crimes of Jack the Ripper”.

A shocking story of religious persecution from Patheos in which a seven year old was the victim, merely for telling a classmate that they did not attend church

My next story concerns a police officer who is already facing a lawsuit for handcuffing children in a very dangerous way, and should as the story makes clear be suffering more than that (defo a jail term measurable in years for this crime).

My next link is to a petition calling on Lego to produce toys that show disabled people in a positive light.

Now, a sad blast from the past. Unbelievably Kevin Healey is still suffering impersonation on twitter and still apparently receiving no protection – please either sign and share the petition if you have not already done so or keep on sharing it to apply pressure to twitter.

I found my last link by way of the aforementioned Natalie Bennett, and it is to a story in the Yorkshire Evening Post about a crackerjack plan for a disused railway viaduct in Leeds.

INFOGRAPHIC

Dr Lisa Sulsenti has produced this infographic providing guidelines on fireworks…

Fireworks