Wednesday, June 18, 1980

Wednesday June 18th

My History exam turned out to be quite easy. It started at nine and consisted of three sections. Section A was about Medicine through time, Section B consisted of questions on Modern World Studies (I chose Communist China) and section C was about the American West. It turned out easier than expected, and I’m confident of a good grade.

Shortly after the exam finished at 11, Wendy Truswell came up to me and told me that there was to be a meeting on June 27th at 1.30 p.m. in the 6th Form Common room about a caving trip (a weekend). I was pleased somebody had made the effort to tell me because before the trip held previously, noone had asked me if I wanted to be included. If I go it will be my fifth trip – I’ve been down Gaping Gill twice, Providence Pot and Dow Cave.

When I came home I loafed about wasting my time until 4.35 when the England v Spain match was shown live on ITV. England started well and Trevor Brooking scored in the first half to put it at 1-0 to England at half-time. After the interval, things really livened up. Spain equalised through a penalty. Several minutes later, another was given and was converted easily. The referee however, demanded a retake which Ray Clemence saved. Spain also had a goal disallowed for offside, Woodcock eventually scoring to make the final score 2-1. In the second match, Belgium held Italy to a 0-0 draw so Belgium go through to the final and Italy play in the 3rd and 4th place final. England came away empty handed therefore. The final Group 2 table was:

While these games were in progress, Dad was out gardening and Mum was doing some work for school.

At about ten o’clock, Dad switched on a programme about the Afrikaaners called the ‘White Tribe of Africa.’ The people interviewed there seemed very wary and constantly hostile to any inquiries about white handling of affairs. “You don’t understand the problems involved” was their incessant appeal. I understand it simply – they are racists (Today they shot dead 36 blacks).

Earlier on today, before the football, I was reading the “Guide to Marxism.” It really is an interesting book, because it gives all Marx’s ideas in plain, ‘easy-to-understand’ phrases which enables the reader to get down to the nitty-gritty of what he actually believed. I was interested to read about Marx’s attitudes towards Socialism. According to the book, he saw Socialism merely as an intermediate stage on the road to Communism – it’s main faults being: 1) “It continues to use money”; 2)”People will contribute to society according to their ability, and will be rewarded according to their work” (as opposed to “need” under Communism); 3) “It is a one-class society” (whereas a Communist society would be classless); 4) “The State and State Apparatus are still in existence” (therefore still able to oppress).

According to the SPGB however, their envisaged society would not possess any of the above defects and would, if this is true, be communist. I certainly agree with the injustice of 2) above. What about those unable to work for some reason? I’d like to ask the SPGB about this: - Socialism or Communism?

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