Customer Reviews


6 Reviews
5 star:
 (4)
4 star:    (0)
3 star:
 (2)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Man of dedication and principle
Love him or hate him, Jack Jones dedicated his life to the advancement of the working man. I am biased because I had the honour of meeting the man several times whilst I was on picket lines during various industrial disputes in the 1970's. He always had the time to listen and talk with the ordinary worker, not like many Trade Union bosses who all too often looked down...
Published on 5 Dec. 2010 by Craddock Edwards from Bristol

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Very good read but very disappointed there was no sleeve to the book.
Published 8 months ago by Mr Barry F Cunningham


Most Helpful First | Newest First

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Man of dedication and principle, 5 Dec. 2010
By 
Craddock Edwards from Bristol (bristol, uk) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Union Man: Autobiography (Hardcover)
Love him or hate him, Jack Jones dedicated his life to the advancement of the working man. I am biased because I had the honour of meeting the man several times whilst I was on picket lines during various industrial disputes in the 1970's. He always had the time to listen and talk with the ordinary worker, not like many Trade Union bosses who all too often looked down upon the fee paying member as voting fodder or a meal ticket.
Born in 1913 and raised in poverty in Liverpool, Jones started working life in the Liverpool docks, the birthplace of many militant trade unionists, socialists and communists.
Badly wounded at the Ebro in the Spanish Civil War, Jones went on to become probably the most powerful Trade Union leader in UK history, nicknamed as one of the "terrible twins" along with Hugh Scanlon by the right wing press in the 70's.
Modest to a fault, quietly spoken, he was elected General Secretary of the huge Transport and General Workers Union in 1968 where he remained until retirement in 1977.
Since his death there have been some fairly serious accusations about where Jack Jone's real loyalties laid, although a Labour Party member he was considered to be a 'fellow traveller' by some. However that in itself was not unusual amongst his generation, many of whom had loyalty to other than free market capitalism. If he was a red then I for one am not bothered, in fact he goes up in my estimation. Before all the right wingers start calling me things, the answer is yes I am.
I do note however, that these claims were only made after his death.
An interesting and well written auto-biography that covers industrial relations and attitudes from the 30's to almost the 80's, not written by bosses, intellectuals, politicians or scholars, but by a working class lad who was in the thick of it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars books, 20 Feb. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Union Man: Autobiography (Hardcover)
I BOUGHT THIS FOR MY HUSBAND WHO HAS AN INTEREST IN POLITICS AND HE THOUGHT IT AN EXCELLENT READ
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read., 22 Sept. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Union Man: Autobiography (Hardcover)
Jack Jones is respected throughout the labour movement. When others have bowed, scraped and took the ermine by entering the House Of Lords eg Prescott. Hattersley, Murray, Barber, Morris to name just five - Jack Jones firmly stood behind and helped working people.
The opening of the book reflects on his years growing up in Garston in Liverpool, through to his volunteering to go to the Spanish Civil War, and the move to be a trades union organiser in Coventry and onwards.
What comes over is how astute and how honest Jack Jones was. How he always fought for the worker and the underdog.

The union movement today has a few good leaders, but Jack Jones was truly outstanding.Well worth a read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Been looking for this book for ages!, 4 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Union Man: Autobiography (Hardcover)
It was in perfect condition and Jack Jones had even signed the book which was an unexpected bonus. Very pleased and will use this site again.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars, 27 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Union Man: Autobiography (Hardcover)
Very good read but very disappointed there was no sleeve to the book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Jack It In, 18 May 2009
By 
Ian Millard - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Union Man: Autobiography (Hardcover)
My signed copy of this work discloses by the signature a man very disciplined, a bit over-tidy perhaps, with an element of lower sensuality too somewhere (large loops on some letters). Enough of graphology. The book itself goes into Jones' very poor childhood in Liverpool in detail; the same of his work as union official and power in the land after WW2. His blinkered ideological viewpoint (Gordievsky and others have implied that he was not only pro-Soviet but even a "confidential contact" or worse) does come out, though more by omission: the Soviet Union failed to join in the war against Hitler "in the early stages of the war", we read. True but "early stages"? From 1939 to 1941, just under 2 years out of 5 or so years in all! And Jones WAS a political commissar, attached to a Republican pro-Communist battalion in the Spanish Civil War. As Orwell wrote in Homage to Catalonia, the Communists started to purge a lot of dissidents after 1936, so Jones, there from 1936-1938 was obviously approved by Soviet Intelligence. He gives no credit to Franco for honouring the dead on all sides after his 1939 victory (most prisoners being released after a while). Jones makes no mention of the horrendous Republican atrocities (though he says he learned to use his revolver). And so it goes. In this book the name "Stalin" never appears...

He gives virtually no space, less than a page, to the War in which he was a trade union official. As Oswald Mosley said, the Labour Party (which Mosley might have led had he wanted to) votes for war, always, under three conditions: it must not be to Britain's advantage; the armies must not be properly armed; no top Labour people will have to fight in it!

I remember, as a teenager in the 1970's, Jones talking (ranting) on TV about Franco and also about those Jones insisted on calling, in pseudo-Spanish I suppose, as "fassissts"!

His domestic political activities seem very limited too. Mosley, he opines, is a traitor and mad (this as early as 1930!) because ex-Labour (he wanted to DO something about poverty etc). Jones is a black and white "thinker" if he can be called a thinker at all. Gordievsky's book (Next Stop Execution) notes that Jones' flat had few books, a "typical philistine environment" with "everything in an exagerrated state of tidiness"!

Jones notes that his mother was helped by a poor Jew who gave her credit, she also buying from another Jew in his shop. So Jones is against anti-Semitism, but fails to realize that here are two refugee Jews circa 1919 and one is lending money and his friend has a shop as the workers starve...later Jones applauds his fellow Labour Party colleagues (both MPs) Mikardo and Zilliacus both of whom we now know from ex-Soviet archives, were Soviet agents and paid as such (this book came out in 1986).

No doubt he was an effective trade unionist, but he exhibits in these nearly 400pp very few ideas and even fewer (none in fact) original ones.

October 2009 update: just-released MI5 archives reveal that Jones WAS a Soviet and later Czech agent, receiving money as late as the 1960's if not later, in return for union and Labour documents. Nice to be shown to be correct...even if it does entail the revising of "history".
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Union Man: Autobiography
Union Man: Autobiography by Jack Jones (Hardcover - 26 Aug. 1986)
Used & New from: £0.01
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews