Posts Tagged ‘Trotskyism’

Rousing send-off for an old agitator

May 27, 2011

Bob Gould, 1937-2011

By Ed Lewis

Bruce Petty's 70th birthday message to Bob Gould (detail)Bob Gould’s funeral, like his life, promised to be interesting, and it didn’t disappoint. About 500 people crowded into the Palm Chapel at Macquarie Park, North Ryde, to hear nine speakers, with Mairi Petersen, Bob’s former wife, making some introductory remarks and running the ceremony.



Susanna Short’s Laurie Short: A Political Life

May 21, 2005

A summary history

Shane Hopkinson


The following are summary notes to a longer piece I was planning to write some time ago about the early days of the Trotskyist movement in Australia, based on Susanna Short’s book on her father, Laurie, and Hall Greenland’s book on Nick Origlass, to tell the story of the early days of the movement in Australia.

As time has got the better of me I decided to simply post my summary of the relevant part of Susanna Short’s book, which is all I have been able to complete. I have tried to aviod editorialising over her comments but I will say a few words here that might clarify the story.


The YSA. How it began

May 3, 2005

Guy Williams

1. The origins

2. The struggle in the YSL

3. Split in the YSL

4. Regroupment

5. Early years of the YSA

6. The lessons


Bob Gould and Ed Lewis

This pamphlet was published in July 1973 by the Workers League, the United States organisation in sympathy with Gerry Healy’s British-based International Committee of the Fourth International. It was based on a series of articles that had appeared earlier in 1973 in the Bulletin, newpaper of the Workers League.


Hall Greenland turns 60

November 5, 2004

By Bob Gould

My old friend and sometime political ally, and on other occasions sharp sparring partner, Hall Greenland has just turned 60, which is a bit alarming to me because I still remember him as the confident youth he was in the 1960s.


Falsehoods about the Left Opposition

March 31, 2004

Bob Gould

Michael or Dennis Berrell, or whoever he is today (just so the rest of us aren’t terminally confused he should consider using one or another name consistently) has put up a post about the Left Opposition that is almost entirely inaccurate and false.


Stalinism in the US

March 10, 2004

Discussions between Leon Trotsky and US Trotskyists in 1940

[The following is a rough stenographic draft — uncorrected by the participants — of discussions on the Stalinists in the US, between Trotsky and leading members of the Cannon faction of the US Socialist Workers Party, held on June 12-15, 1940]


Red Hot, biography of Nick Origlass

December 11, 2003

Bob Gould

Red Hot, by Hall Greenland, 1998, Wellington Lane Press

My mate and old political sparring partner, Hall Greenland, has finally completed and published his biography of Nick Origlass, one of the most significant left figures in the political life of Sydney’s inner-west for about 60 years, although from the point of view of pompous official history — the history of prime ministers, governors, company directors and movie stars — he was but a bit player.


Jack Kavanagh joins Communist League

October 17, 2003

From The Militant, organ of the Workers Party (Australia), March 1940

Old communist indicts Comintern, declares Fourth International upholder of Marxism-Leninism

Jack Kavanagh, the author of the statement which follows, has been associated with the working-class movement in Canada and Australia for the last 32 years.


Trotskyism in Australia

October 16, 2003

Notes from a talk with Ted Tripp (1976)

Peter Beilharz

At the 1991 Labour History Conference in Melbourne, Barbara Curthoys was talking on the Comintern and the Communist Party of Australia. At one stage Barbara mentioned the name of Ted Tripp, saying that he had attended the Lenin School in Moscow in the 1930s. Dick Curlewis then asked from the floor, was this the same Tripp who had been active in the Victorian Labor College. It was indeed, as others present indicated.


How to split

October 16, 2003

An extract from Down the Long Table, a novel by Earl Birney

Introduction by Bob Gould

Back in 1970, along with several documents putting the point of view of the group opposed to Jim and John Percy during the split in Resistance and the International Marxist League in Sydney, I printed and distributed two small pamphlets. One was an article Lenin in 1905 by Marcel Liebman from Monthly Review, about the Committee Men, and the other one a chapter from Earl Birney’s book, Down the Long Table, to which I gave the title, How to Split. (more…)

The Balmain ironworkers’ strike of 1945

August 13, 2003

Daphne Gollan

Part 1. The factions emerge
Part 2. The strike against the union

Daphne Gollan, Nick Origlass and the history of the ironworkers’ union, an introduction by Bob Gould

These two articles on the Balmain ironworkers’ struggle were published in Labour History in May and November 1972. Another article by Daphne Gollan, The Memoirs of Cleopatra Sweatfigure, written in 1980, is a mature autobiographical piece that had great influence, particularly among feminists, in the 1980s. Daphne Gollan, who died a few years ago, was the former wife of Robin Gollan (the labour historian), lover of the late Nick Origlass (the long-lived and stubborn pioneer Australian Trotskyist) and herself a very capable labour historian.


Murder will out

July 30, 2003

An open letter to members of the Communist Party

The Militant, Sydney, April 1940

Guido Baracchi


Bob Gould

Guido Baracchi led an interesting, colourful and useful life on the left. I first laid eyes on Guido at a meeting of the general branch of the clerks’ union in 1955, which I attended along with other leftists in the orbit of the Communist Party in an attempt to outstack the Groupers in the run-up to a clerks’ union election.


What is happening in the Communist Party?

July 30, 2003

Gil Roper

From The Militant, Sydney, November 29, 1937 (Vol 4, No 14 — new series)


The partly forgotten world of Sydney Marxism from the 1930s to the 1950s

Bob Gould

Gil and Edna Roper were active in the left of the labour movement from the 1920s until the 1960s. As a brash young rebel in the 1950s, I got to know them both, and they were very kind to me.


Letter from British SWP to French LCR

July 18, 2003

Central Committee of the Socialist Workers Party

To Daniel Bensaid, Leon Cremieux, Francois Duval, and Francois Sabado

Dear Comrades,

Much has happened since you wrote your letter to us in December 2002. Faced with the most gigantic international protest movement in world history, the United States and Britain — in defiance, not just of the anti-war movement, but of the opposition of most of the world’s ruling classes, headed by France, Germany, and Russia — have succeeded in conquering Iraq and are now subjecting the country to what amounts to a colonial occupation and threatening to attack neighbouring states such as Iran and Syria.


In Moscow in the 1930s

July 10, 2003

How the Comintern was Stalinised

Ted Tripp

It was in 1917 that I first became a socialist, largely under the impact of the mighty Russian Revolution. The revolution was to change the course of my life. They were great days, and I take pride in saying that I became a communist at the age of 17 and remain so to this day.