I AM sorry that reader Car Waterson misunderstood my “attack on Trade Unions”, National Letters, 13/11/21. At no point did I attack the principle of Trade Unionism, nor did I understand Stuart Cosgrove’s original article to do so. I was attacking Labour’s anti Trade Union laws, such as Barbara Castle’s, “Prices and Income’s” policy, which paved the way for Thatcherism. There is nothing that Thatcher did that Lords Wilson, and Callaghan, Kneel Kinnockio and Tory Blair or Lord Mandelson, et al, did not do and worse.

He sees nothing significant in selling off their empty shell of an “S”TUC building. to private developers and moving it out of the City Centre to Rutherglen. For years they have been trying to do away with Scottish TUC completely, as they did with all the rest of the Scottish Trade Unions and SCWS. I was told this by the late Bill Spiers, former STUC leader.

It is not just the building, but the “S”TUC that is an empty shell waiting to be transferred to London. He did not answer my point on the Tame Unions suing the female City Council employees demanding equal pay?

In the early 60’s, the “Scottish Nationalist Trade Unions Association” was formed. The late Bill Johnston was most prominent. He became the SNP Provost of Clydebank and he and his wife, Agnes retired to North Laggan in Invergarry. They left their ex forester’s cottage to a local homeless couple, who worked for a hotel, owned by an incomer. They both worked split shifts and paid rent for the caravan, electricity, etc. to their boss, and could never afford a mortgage on their meagre wages.

Trade Unions could never organise the hospitality trade. Bill was an experienced full time organiser in an American Trade Union and a member of the Wobblies, Industrial Workers of the World. He always maintained that the US Trade Unions were corrupt and a bunch of gangsters, but that the British Trade Unions were more so and were not so open in slapping their members down and well absorbed into the British establishment.

Lord Joe Gormley of the miners Union is only one case in point in being exposed as an MI5 tout 40 years after his death.

Bill’s Johnston’s main strategy was to eliminate the political levy, where Trade Union members were automatically and fraudulently affiliated to the GB Labour Party and had to struggle to opt out. Not an easy task when stonewalled by full time tame union officials and uninformed Shop Stewards.

I had to break into union offices and secure opt out cards for 600 workers, where I was a shop steward. And we all opted out. Sue me. If you are ever lucky enough to get that far, the levy money then goes to a “political fund”, which is spent on guess where? No prizes for that one; Brothers, Sisters, Baronesses, Lords, Knight and Gongs of the Brutish Empah.

Bill, incidentally, was also an active Convenor of the cross party Scottish Republican Socialist Movement, as I am a member of, and not of any of the of the divisive anti SNP parties as he fondly imagines, or inferred.

The wave of trade union members striking against scab Labour Governments was entirely “Unofficial” and opposed by the official Tame Union representatives.

To read of the long list of former Scottish Trade Unions, such as the Scottish Transport and General, Scottish Horse and Motorman’s, Scottish, Glaziers, Plumbers, Painters, etc, etc, wiped out of history, I suggest reading Professor WH Marwick’s, “Labour in Scottish History” for a full and comprehensive list. It was later brought out in a pamphlet by the Scottish National Congress, or Scottish Secretariat, based in Elmbank Crescent, Glasgow. That building was bought by Roland E Muirhead, Scottish Republican Socialist and destroyed to make way the failed Strathclyde Regional HQ Tower Block.

Lord Wilson’s regionalisation, to “bring Government closer to the people” was another failed plan to stop devolution or independence.

Donald Anderson