John Riddell: Democracy in Lenin's Comintern

How did Communist parties handle issues of internal discipline and democracy in Lenin’s time? The recent intense discussion within the British Socialist Workers’ Party (SWP) and beyond has heard claims that the SWP rests on the traditions of democratic centralism inherited from the Bolsheviks.

John Riddell: Democracy in Lenin's Comintern

Richard Atkinson: Death and the Bedroom Tax

Some extended thoughts about Stephanie Bottrill, the woman who committed suicide because of the bedroom tax.

Richard Atkinson: Death and the Bedroom Tax

Dave Renton: Who Was Blair Peach?

Today marks the 35th anniversary of the killing of Blair Peach by the police. David Renton looks back at Blair Peach’s life as a poet, trade unionist and committed antifascist

Dave Renton: Who Was Blair Peach?

Bunny La Roche: Nasty Little Nigel gets a rude welcome to Kent

Bunny La Roche of RS21 on Nigel Farage's visit to Kent

Bunny La Roche: Nasty Little Nigel gets a rude welcome to Kent

Financial Appeal

We're up and running! An appeal for funds to kickstart the IS Network

Financial Appeal

Event: People's Parliament - Beyond Capitalism?

What does resistance today tell us about the need to move beyond capitalism as we know it?

Wednesday 4 June, 7pm-8.30pm, Committee Room 8, House of Commons

Sign up here


Luke Cooper (Author of Beyond Capitalism? The Future of Radical Politics)
Simon Hardy (Author of Beyond Capitalism? The Future of Radical Politics)
Lynne Segal (Professor, Birkbeck College)
Maia Pal (Academic, Occupy Sussex)
Chaired by John McDonnell MP

Please allow at least 15 minutes to come through Parliament security. The most convenient entrance to come in at is the St Stephens Entrance

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ISN National General Meeting 1 March 2014

National General Meeting

Sheffield Hallam University

Saturday 1 March 11am–5.30pm

We will be holding our next national members' meeting in Sheffield on Saturday 1 March. An agenda will be released shortly. Among the subjects we will be discussing are revolutionary regroupment, how best we relate to the newly formed RS21, recent debates inside the IS Network, Left Unity, and the environment. Any issues you would like to raise for the meeting or items for the agenda please email

The deadline for the next internal bulletin is Friday 14 February. Please email submissions to

Any motions for the meeting please email to Please lay out your motions in a simple bullet point format.

We will be providing childcare on the day. Could volunteers for the creche please email

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Secretary's Conference Report

Secretary’s Conference Report

I have written a brief report regarding the organisation of the IS Network national meetings, based upon the experience of our recent Politics Conference, as well as drawing upon the lessons of our founding meeting and National General Meeting. This is by no means a definitive account, nor are any proposals contained set in stone; however, it is aimed to be a step towards a standard format and procedure for future meetings. The IS Network is itself a work in progress, and any systems and structures are, and should continue to be, under constant review. However, I believe an agreed-upon standard format is necessary in order to move away from organisation on the hoof, and also to set out parameters so that our democratic forums provide a space which is most conducive for political discussion. There were many issues raised during the conference itself and suggestions as to how to improve our meetings, most notably by the caucuses, but also by individuals. Other lessons became apparent in the course of organising the conference.

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Read more: Secretary's Conference Report

IS Network Politics Conference

As announced earlier this week, the IS Network’s Politics Conference has been rearranged to be on the weekend of Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 October, to take place in London. Details of the venue will be available soon.

Each day will start at 10am and finish at 5pm. We expect to have three or four sessions on each day, with breaks for refreshments and food. A more detailed timetable will be proposed by the conference arrangements committee and will be subject to approval or amendment by the conference itself.

Conference arrangements committee

Alison L from the National Steering Committee is heading the conference arrangements committee and is looking for volunteers from among the wider membership to join her. The job of the conference arrangements committee is to propose the agenda to conference and to collate and manage the submissions from members to ensure that discussion pieces and motions are included in the relevant sessions. If you’d like to help Alison to organise the conference, please email


We aim to provide a crèche facility. Please let us know as soon as possible if you think you may wish to take advantage of this. Please also let us know if you are able to help with organising and staffing a crèche by email to


We will be doing our best to help match up comrades needing accommodation with comrades who have a spare room/sofa/floor space. Let us know on internationalsocialistnetwork@gmail.comasap if you need help or if you can offer space.

Pre-conference bulletins

To facilitate as wide a pre-conference discussion as possible and to ensure the proceedings of the Politics Conference are determined by members, we are encouraging members to submit contributions to two pre-conference bulletins.

To give a little extra time compared to what was announced earlier this week, the deadline for the first bulletin is 5pm on Sunday 22 September. Contributions will be published by email to members and on the IS Network’s website by the end of Monday 23 September. The deadline for the second bulletin is 5pm on Sunday 13 October and these further contributions will be published by the end of Monday 14 October.

Types of contributions might include:

  • Agenda proposals – Which subjects should be covered, how many, how long should each session be?
  • Reports – What has worked well in your locality and what less so?
  • Position papers – What should be our attitude to developing initiatives on the left, and within the organisations of the class?
  • Motions – proposals for action by the IS Network or changes to how we work
  • Discussion documents – What is the IS Network for? How do we see the current terrain of class struggle, and what do we aim to do within it?
  • Conference procedure – How will each session be conducted and concluded?
  • Theoretical debate – How much of what we describe as ‘our tradition’ remains relevant, and what do we need to rethink?

The above are just a few of the examples which have occurred to us – your contribution can be on any subject and follow any approach. Pieces can be of any length – as short as you like, as long as you think people will read.

Send your contributions to

The more contributions we receive before the first deadline of 5pm on Sunday 22 September, the more members will have to read, discuss and respond to in the second bulletin.

Get writing!

Steering Committee

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October politics conference - date and deadline changes

Our politics conference has moved by one week, to 19-20 October 2013. More details on venue and start/end times coming soon.

Deadlines for submissions to the conference have also moved accordingly, giving you an extra week. The deadlines are now 20 September for the first bulletin and 13 October for the second bulletin. Email submissions to

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*** CANCELLED *** National Members' Meeting Sat 21 September: Agenda

NOTE: This meeting has been cancelled to allow full support of the opposition to the EDL Yorkshire-wide demo that day; new arrangements have been made to discuss this agenda at the October Political Conference and a new Members' Meeting is proposed be arranged.

National Members' Meeting Agenda 21 September

1pm Liberation Joint Caucus

  • It has been suggested that the Network’s self-organised groups hold a Liberation day school in November. This is an opportunity for members of those groups to get together and begin to organise it.

2pm Report Backs and Discussion

  • Although discussion and decisions on perspectives will primarily be reserved for the politics conference in October, this session is for general discussion on fields of the Network’s activity, and feedback from local groups and activists.

3:15pm Break

3:45pm Organisation and Constitution

  • This will be an opportunity to discuss the current structures of the Network and how they could be improved, to elect people to organisational bodies including the Steering Committee, and to vote on amendments to the constitution.

4:45pm Agenda and Organisation of Conference

  • A session on how the conference should be organised and what should be discussed.
  • Also an opportunity to discuss and debate issues that have arisen in the pre-conference period so far.

6pm Finish

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