Colliery Band, the
Gladstone, William Ewart
God That Failed, The
Gotha Programme, the
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The Big Soviet
Enclyclopaedia (3rd ed., English version, v.5 p.164) has this to
"Born 9 March
1934 in the village of Klushino, Gzhatsk Raion, Smolensk Oblast; died
27 March 1968. Pilot and cosmonaut of the USSR. First man to accomplish
flight in outer space. Colonel; Hero of the Soviet Union (4 April
1961); member of the CPSU from 1960.
was born into the family of a kolhoznik. In 1951 he graduated
with honours as a molder-founder from a trade school in the town of
Liubertsy on the outskirts of Moscow; at the same time he finished
a school for working youth. He was then sent to the Saratov Industrial
Technicum, which he also completed successfully in 1955. Gagarin took
his first steps in aviation when he was a student of this technicum,
receiving instruction in the Saratov Aeroclub. After finishing the
aeroclub's course in 1955, Gagarin enrolled in the First Chkalov Military
Aviation Pilots' School. In 1957 he graduated from this school with
the highest possible rank and served in the fighter units of the Red
Banner Northern Fleet's Aviation. As one of the most talented and
courageous fighter pilots, he was chosen in 1960 for the detachment
of cosmonauts. In February 1968 he graduated with honours from the
N. E. Zhokovskii Air Force Academy in Moscow.
"On 12 April
1961, Gagarin completed the world's first space flight in the satellite-spaceship
Vostok. Gagarin circled the globe in 1 hour and 48 minutes and returned
safely to earth. After this flight he continuously worked at improving
his skills as a pilot and cosmonaut and directly participated in instructing
and training cosmonaut crews as well as directing space flights. Gagarin
carried on a great deal of sociopolitical work and visited many countries
in the world. He was a deputy to the sixth and seventh convocations
of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR and a member of the central committee
of the All-Union Lenin Communist Youth League (VLKSM). In 1966 he
became an honorary member of the International Academy of Astronautics.
Gagarin was awarded the Order of Lenin as well as the highest awards
of many foreign states.
died tragically in an airplane crash near the village of Novoselovo,
Kirzhach Raion, Vladimir Oblast, while on a training flight. He was
buried on Red Square, Moscow.
Gagarin's memory, the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the RFSFR
renamed the city of Gzhatsk, Smolensk Oblast, as the city of Gagarin
and the Gzhatsk Raion, Smolensk Oblast, as the Gagarin Raion. The
name of Iu. A. Gagarin was also accorded to the Red Banner of the
Order of Kutuzov Air Force Academy in Monino. A crater on the far
side of the moon was also named after Gagarin.
the International Aeronautical Federation instituted a gold medal
named for Iu. A. Gagarin, which is awarded each year to pilot-cosmonauts
who have achieved the greatest results in the field of man's mastery
of outer space for peaceful purposes. The first medal was awarded
to G. T. Beregovoi (1969)."
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Why is the giraffe
the hieroglyph of truth? The greatest of all the Utopian Socialists
Charles Fourier explains:
characteristic of truth is to surmount error, the animal that represents
it must be able to raise its head higher than all the others: this
the giraffe can do, as it browses on branches 18 feet above the ground...
[A]s [truth] is incapable of harmonising with our customs, its hieroglyph,
the giraffe, must be incapable of helping humans in their work; thus
God has reduced it to insignificance by giving it an irregular gait
which shakes up and damages any burden it might be called upon to
bear. As a result we prefer to leave it to inaction, just as nobody
will employ a truthful man, whose character runs counter to all accepted
customs and desires. Truth is only beautiful in our society when it
is inactive, and the giraffe, by analogy, is only admirable when it
is at rest: when it walks or runs it provokes jeers, as truth provokes
jeers when it takes a practical form. ... [T]o represent the way truth
is repressed, God has cut the giraffe's horns down to their roots,
so that they are no more than sprouts, permanently unable to branch
up into antlers... [A]lthough we are enemies of truth, we want to
deck ourselves out in its dress; by analogy, the only thing we want
from the giraffe is its dress, its skin, which is extremely beautiful;
so when we catch one we treat it rather as we treat truth. We say
to it, 'Poor beast, you are good for nothing but to remain in the
desert, far from the society of man; we may admire you for a little
while, but in the end we must kill you and keep only your skin, just
as we stifle truth and keep only its outward appearance.'
explanation we can see that God has created nothing without a purpose,
even the giraffe which is supremely useless... If you wish to know
what purposes truth will serve in societies other than Civilisation,
study this problem in the counter-giraffe, which we call the
reindeer, an animal which provides us with every service imaginable:
you will see that God has excluded it from those social climates,
from which truth will also be excluded for as long as Civilisation
Fourier: The Theory of the Four Movements, trans. Ian Patterson,
Cambridge, 1996, pp.283-4.]
This unhappy state
of affairs is only temporary. With a better society comes the anti-giraffe,
"a great and magnificent servant whose qualities will far surpass
the good qualities of the reindeer, which so excites our envy and arouses
our anger at nature for having deprived us of it".
Former Speaker of
the US House of Representatives Newt Gingrich has aslo been thinking
about giraffes. See Upper Body Strength in this Dictionary.
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The Big Soviet
Encyclopaedia (3rd ed., English version, v.6 pp.419-420) swiftly
presents and assesses the career of the Grand Old Man of British politics:
December, 1809 in Liverpool; died 19 May, 1898 in Hawarden; English
was born into the family of a rich merchant. He was educated in the
exclusive aristocratic school at Eton and graduated from Oxford University,
where he studied theology and classical literature. In 1832 he was
eleted to Parliament as a member of the Tory Party. He gradually understood,
however, that the development of capitalism and the strengthening
of the bourgeoisie had rendered the old Tory position hopeless, and
he began to orinet himself towards the Liberals.
to 1845, Gladstone was minister of trade in the Peel government and
from 1845 to 1847, minister of the colonies. From 1852 to 1855 he
was chancellor of the exchquer in Aberdeen's coalition government,
and from 1859 to 1866 he was chancellor of the exchequer in the Liberal
government of Palmerston. During the Civil War in the USA (1861-65)
Gladstone supported the southern slaveowners. In 1868 he was elected
leader of the Liberal Party. From 1868 to 1874, Gladstone was primie
minister. His government brought about reform in primary education,
legalised the trade unions (simultaneously introducing punishment
for picketing of establishments by strikers in their struggle against
strikebreakers), and introduced the secret ballot. After the defeat
of the Liberals in the parliamentary elections of 1874, Gladstone
led the opposition to Disraeli's Conservative government.
of the government from 1880 to 1885, Gladstone continued the expansionist
foreign policy of the Conservatives. In 1882, his government sent
English troops to seize Egypt. Cruelyl suppressing the national liberation
movement in Ireland, the Gladstone government simultaneously made
insignificant concessions. The defeat of English troops in teh Sudan
and compications in Ireland led to the fall of the Gladstone government.
Gladstone headed the government for a short time in 1886, introducing
in Parliament a bill on home rule for Ireland, the defeat of which
caused him to retire. The fight over this question continued for a
long time. When he headed the government again from 1892 to 1894,
Gladstone got a bill on home rule for Ireland through the House of
Commons, but the House of Lords defeated it. He again went into retirement,
and his political career, which had lasted more than 60 years, was
due foundation English historiography has created for Gladstone the
fame of a great statesman. Marx applied the expression 'great' in
quotation marks to Gladstone, calling him 'an arch-hypocrite and casuist'."
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That Failed, The
Edited by Arthur
"Darkness at Noon" Koestler and Richard "Diaries
of a Cabinet Minister" Crossman, and first published in 1949,
The God That Failed is an important collection of autobiographical
writings by ex-Communists, describing their involvement in and disillusionment
with the Communist Parties of the Third International period.
The first half,
containing the reminiscences of actual party militants -- Koestler himself,
Ignazio Silone and Richard Wright -- remains relentlessly more interesting
than the second half, in which literati like André Gide and Stephen
Spender muse on their period of fellow-travelling. Koestler describes
the state of the KPD in Berlin in the early 1930s and provides an insider's
account of that organisation's impotence in the face of the Nazi seizure
of power. Silone presents a fascinating description of his childhood
encounters with politics in the Italian South before the First World
War, and eyewitness account of the inner councils of the Comintern in
1920s Moscow, where he represented the PCI along with Palmiro Togliatti.
Wright describes the Communist Party in Depressed Chicago, where the
politics of race, class and paranoia intersected to crush his political
and cultural projects on behalf of Chicago Blacks. Elsewhere in the
Dictionary we reproduce Koestler's account of Proletarian Morality.
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The Gotha Programme
was adopted in 1875 when the Eisenacher and Lassallean factions came
together at a Unity Congress to form a single German Socialist Party,
the direct forerunner of today's SPD. The programme is most famous for
the stinging response it elicited from Karl Marx, in his Critique
of the Gotha Programme, which remains one of his most important
political texts. Marx wrote his comments on the draft version of the
programme, and some -- but not many -- of his criticisms resulted in
modifications to the final text that was adopted on May 25 as the basis
for the new party. This final text is short enough to reproduce here
in full; the draft text is reproduced in the text of Marx's Critique.
The Gotha Programme remained the platform of the German Socialists until
it was replaced by the Erfurt Programme
is the source of wealth and all culture, and inasmuch as generally
useful labour is possible only through society, the total product
of labour belongs to society, i.e., to all its members, with
universal obligation to work, with equal right, to each according
to his reasonable needs.
2. In present-day
society, the instruments of labour are the monopoly of the capitalist
class; the resulting dependence of the working class is the cause
of misery and servitude in all its forms.
emancipation of labour demands the conversion of the instruments of
labour into the common property of society and the co-operative regulation
of the total labour, with employment for the common use of the proceeds
of labour and their equitable distribution.
emancipation of labour must be the work of the working class, in contrast
to which all other classes are only one reactionary mass.
Socialist Workers' Party of Germany, although acting in the first
place within national limits, is conscious of the international character
of the workers' movement and is resolved to fulfil all the obligations
which this imposes on the workers in order to make the brotherhood
of all men a truth.
these basic principles, the German Workers' party strives by all legal
means for the free state and socialist society; the breaking of the
iron law of wages by the abolition of the system of wage-labour, the
abolition of exploitation in every form, the removal of all social
and political inequality.
The German Workers'
party, in order to pave the way to the solution of the social question,
demands the establishment of producers' co-operative societies with
state aid under the democratic control of the toiling people. The
producers' co-operative societies are to be called into being for
industry and agriculture in such dimensions that the socialist organization
of the total labor will arise from them."
German Workers' Party demands as the free basis of the state:
equal, direct and secret suffrage for all males of twenty-one years
and above, for all elections - national and local.
2. Direct legislation by the people with right of initiating
prosals and veto.
3. Universal conscription. People's militia in place of the
standing army. Decision on war and peace through the people's representatives.
4. Abolition of all exceptional laws, especially the laws
on the press, association and assembly.
5. Administration of justice by the people. Free administration
Socialist Workers' Party of Germany demands, within existing society:
and equal elementary education through the state. Universal compulsory
school attendance. Free instruction.
2. A single progressive income tax for state and local administration,
in place of all existing, and especially indirect, taxes.
3. Freedom of association.
4. A normal working day, corresponding to the needs of society,
and prohibition of Sunday labour.
5. Restriction of women's labour and prohibition of child
6. State supervision of factory, workshop, and domestic industry.
7. Regulation of prison labour.
8. An effective liability law.
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The Big Soviet
Encyclopaedia (3rd ed., English version, v.2 p.674) usefully defines
a graduate student as "A person preparing himself to do pedagogical
or scientific work through graduate study at an institute of higher
learning or an institute for scientific research and to defend a dissertation
in order to receive the scholarly degree of candidate of sciences".
Many of the contributors
to The Voice of the Turtle are graduate students.
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is the nasty technique which corporations use as an alternative to making
substantive changes in their operations..." Raj
Patel lays down the party line here,
with his sustained polemic against everybody's favourite genetic engineers,
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Colliery Band, the
One of the leading
brass bands in Britain. The Grimethorpe Colliery Band was founded in
1917 by miners from the Yorkshire pit, and funded by the colliery until
nationalisation in 1947, when the National Coal Board and its Coal Industry
Social Welfare Organisation took over sponsorship. The transformation
of the band from being a thoroughly-competent outfit on the regional
circuit into being a major force in the world of brass bands began in
1972, when Elgar Howarth was appointed as the band's conductor, and
works of avant-garde music began to be commissioned for the band. Since
then the Grimethorpe Colliery Band has toured around the world, performing
extremely well in both national and international competitions.
In 1992 the band
was thrown into crisis, and under the media spotlight, when Michael
Heseltine's pit closure programme shut down the Grimethorpe Colliery.
More publicity was given to the pit and to the band with the release
of the film Brassed Off, a lightly fictionalised account of the
autumn's events, set in "Grimley". Although the pit was abandoned,
the band was rescued from oblivion, and a 1995 sponsorship deal from
RJB Mining plc now keeps the band in existence. Most of the band's members
are still ex-coal miners; it now performs under the direction of Major
Peter Parkes (formerly director of music in the British Army) and Gary
E. Cutt. Recent competition results remain creditable with second place
in the 1996 National Championships, third in the 1997 European Championships
and fourth in the 1998 British Open, with successive victories in the
Mineworkers' Championship competition.
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