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The Ramblings of My Brain


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Love Me or Hate Me

“Love me or hate me, both are in my favour… If you love me, I’ll always be in your heart…If you hate me, I’ll always be in your mind.”
William Shakespeare

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MU Equality Committee 2013 Motion Re Equality History Months

MU Equality Committee Equality History Month Motion

This recommendation was accepted (cu) by the EC at their September 2013 meeting

The Musicians Union has long stood shoulder to shoulder with other unions, groups and individuals campaigning on Equality issues. Sadly, much of the endeavours, sacrifices, gains and achievements made on behalf of this ongoing campaign can pass by largely unnoticed, despite the enormity of their impact on our day to day lives.

In order to highlight the importance of Equalities work and to demonstrate the MU’s ongoing and active support for that work, this committee asks the EC to instigate a policy to take a positive and active role in highlighting and celebrating all the Equalities History Months, both in internal and external communications. This would take the form of periodic, music-related articles throughout the year in Musician magazine, on the website and through social media etc.

This initiative would raise awareness amongst existing membership and the public at large and thereby also serve as a potential recruitment tool for new members. During a period of severe austerity cuts, hardship and heightened discrimination for many, this would demonstrate that the MU is taking a proactive role in promoting and protecting the interests of all its membership equally.


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MU Delegates Conference 2013 – London Region Motion 20 – Equality Monitoring

This motion was passed by the conference and is subsequently in the process of being implemented

London Region Equality Monitoring Motion (Motion 20)

The 2011 TUC Equality Audit asked unions for the first time whether they have an Equality Action Plan in place. Thirteen unions (27 per cent) said they did have such plans. Amongst those affirming they did have an Equality Action Plan in place was our sister union, Equity. The others were ASLEF, CSP, GMB, napo, NASUWT, NGSU, National Union of Teachers (NUT), Prospect, TSSA, UCU, UNISON and Unite. Sadly, the Musicians Union was not one of them. The TUC organises five annual statutory conferences, one for each of the Equality Groups – Women, Black Workers, Disability, LGBT and Youth. Sadly of those five Equality Groups, the Musicians Union currently only has data concerning membership numbers of two: Women and Youth.

Brendan Barber, General Secretary of the TUC says, “At the present time when public spending cuts, public service reform and cuts to welfare benefits are likely to widen Equality gaps, it is important for unions to be reaching out, recruiting from and representing the most vulnerable groups.”

It is simply not possible for any organisation to do that without knowing how near or off the mark they are already in their recruitment processes. That’s why accurate equalities monitoring is vital in the running of any 21st Century organisation. We need accurate membership data in order to know how well we are doing in that regard.

This conference calls on the EC to put into place a cohesive system to gather that information from the membership and put together an Equality Action Plan based on those statistics.


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MU London Region AGM 2013 – Motion Re Social Media Links

Submitted to MU London Regional AGM 30th September 2013
(This motion was passed unanimously save for one abstention and subsequently accepted by the EC)

Motion Asking EC To Address MU’s Current Digital Campaigning Weakness Re Social Media Links

In order to increase the effectiveness of the MU’s ongoing digital campaigns, the London Region asks the EC to ensure that all our online and digital articles contain appropriate and properly working links for Twitter, Facebook, email and other social-media as may be, and/or become, appropriate.

Currently, this provision is patchy and not properly formulated, especially with regard to Twitter links (both in the email newsletters and articles on the website). This acts as a barrier to people spreading the word as easily and widely as possible in order to garner campaign support. This therefore diminishes the strength and effectiveness of MU campaigns (especially those asking members and allies to sign petitions in support of key campaigns).

We ask the EC to address this situation with some urgency.


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Collusion is always the greater part of oppression

Taken from another article, originally posted 14th Feb 2005 on my original blog site

Never has the Western (so called ‘first’) world (hah!) been so bland…
Our young people are like robots, doped on skunk, high on pills and pacified by alcohol. The irony is that they (and the attendant High Priests of Cool – those too old to be considered young and therefore, once again, in fear of their very seat at the top table) have bought into (and thereby CREATED) a world where it is considered rebellion to wear designer labels, prance about in designer trainers, play designer games and listen to designer music. All look and no substance; style over content;

The question is: how is it that large multi national conglomerates have so effectively created a feeling of rebellion from conformity? And how is it that those who know better have been scared into remaining silent?

Collusion is always the greater part of oppression.