University and Colleges Union Advice to Members: DO NOTHING

Exclusive Second Interview: UCU Demands that Members do Nothing

Jean Tully Education Correspondent for New Times continues her exclusive series about the University of Weeengland: Today Head of the UCU tells members: YOU SHOULD HAVE VOTED TO STRIKE, IMBECILES!

Rebecca Halstead, good to see you! You must be pleased after such a resounding vote for action against pay cuts. I checked the statistics: 70% of your HE members have voted for actions short of a strike. You can now activate the permanent revolt you talked about during our last interview.

No Jean. I am not happy. Union members are lily livered cowards, imbeciles, who think that strikes are not necessary. I have been a trade unionist all my life. The only way to win is to get out on the streets and bring the system down…

Rebecca, when did one day strikes bring any one to their knees? You are living in a romanticised French Revolutionary past…

Jean, you miss the point. Our members are not intelligent enough to see that action short of a strike is only successful with a proper threat to back it up, a strike. The employers will strike out, viper like, and threaten the livelihood of members if we take other actions. This was an ill-considered decision. I blame our Führer, Sally Hunt. She never wanted a strike. Her lack of commitment shone through her luke-warm endorsement of this ballot!  We are laughing stocks now! Laughing stocks! Every member who voted no must be put into stocks and beaten. Apologies Jean, I am upset.

But Rebecca…the UCU has a clear mandate, 70%, and you will do nothing with it? Your members voted against strikes. I have spoken to many of them. This was a strategic decision, a well-considered decision. You are out of step with them. What is the use of one day strikes that go nowhere, many  asked me? You could bring the system down by working to your contracted weekly hours…by..

Piffle Jean. All piffle! Our members do not know what is good for them! They do not have the years of experience shared by me and other members of  the national executive.

Rebecca let me quote Trotsky, your hero: “The proletariat may “tolerate” for a long time a leadership that has already suffered a complete inner degeneration” but not forever. It seems that you and the national executive are suffering from inner degradation, from arrogance, from an inability to read, understand and empathise with the position of your members…

Action short of a strike is pointless Jean. What will members actually do? Work to contract. Big deal. Might as well suck Professor Woodley’s…sorry, terrible image…Boycott external exams? Boycott exam boards? Withhold marking? Refuse to validate new degrees? Refuse to fill out UCAS form, boycott the REF, take out all the library books required by students, glue themselves to the desk of the VC…those are not the acts of real bad ass revolutionaries! That is the behaviour of wimps, and wimps fail. Idiots. They have no backbone. We need erect, upstanding revolutionaries who understand the need to sacrifice…

Actually those are exactly the ideas I heard from your members Rebecca. They are prepared to take action short of a strike. They think that the UCU is caught in a vicious bind. On the one hand there are people like you, I am told, passionate but visually impaired, bound to the past like obsessive neurotics convinced that you will finally climax if you keep masturbating the same gun…and then there are the new labourites, those who think that we should not rock the boat too much, ready to compromise for future jobs as MPs, or for 100 grand salaries like your current leader. That lot pretend to act frantically, but they do nothing. They too cannot climax. They send out endless consultations, they encourage more recruitment,they advertise free John Lewis hampers for members who recruit new members, they consult in order to do absolutely nothing. Either the union acts like the October revolution is about to happen, or it pretends to act and does nothing. Why should members  pay dues to a union that does not even consult them on what they voted for?

History tell us…

That is what I mean Rebecca…history. Act now, today, in an age when going on strike does nothing because you all go home and complete the work by email. Refuse to answer emails…do something that actually has an effect…or are you committed to the sadomasochistic repetition of failure? Perhaps you…

Jean, you are a journalist, not a psycho-analyst. We on the National Executive have considered all possible options and have made the right decision for our members…

No, you have over-ruled and ignored your members.

STOP INTERRUPTING ME JEAN. We have made our decision. There will be no action short of a strike. Members must do nothing to resist further pay cuts. If they wish to make their point they must vote for a strike. That is the only decision we will listen to.

Forgive me Rebecca, why  did you ask members if they were prepared to take action short of a strike  if you had already decided what to do? You have ignored the will expressed by members? There have been calls for you to resign. Will you consider your position?

Jean, I am leaving. The point of having an executive is to interpret the will of members. We have done this. Obviously you corrupt journalist pigs do not understand that principle.Goodbye. Go and shag Professor Woodley, as is your wont!

(For the record our correspondent Jean Tully has never shagged Professor Woodley. The New Times apologises for any content which may upset younger readers.)

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