The Alliance for Workers’ Liberty is standing in this election to raise the banner for socialism — to give some positive shape to the revulsion that working-class people feel about the way capitalism functions.
We’re raising a set of ideas that oppose the idea that capitalism is the best humanity can do.
We’re out at weekends and in the evenings talking to people on estates and on the streets about ideas that will radically change their lives for the better.
We’re doing what the Labour Party seems presently incapable of doing. We’re talking about the need for a government that fights as hard for the working class as Labour, and the Tories before them, have fought on behalf of the bosses. And we’re doing this during a recession where we’ve seen Labour bail out the banks to tune of billions, while doing nothing to stop the jobs of ordinary workers disappear, and their lives and those of their families slip into the misery of poverty and insecurity.
And the tsunami has barely hit the shore. All three main parties are talking about drastic cuts to public sector jobs and services. That will send shock waves to the private sector; unemployment and poverty will rise even more.
The devastation caused by these attacks will be a blow to a generation or more — as people are condemned to the scrap heap waiting for better times and boom years.
The Alliance for Workers’ Liberty proposes a different plan — a plan that will make the lives of the majority better, more secure.
Our plan involves putting people to work through a massive homes, schools and hospitals building programme (and without one penny to PFI business) — creating jobs and services for the working class.
We are proposing the nationalisation of the utilities and transport system and, we dare to say, without any compensation to the bosses. And while we’re about it, we’ll take control of the banks — we want a democratically controlled banking, mortgages and pensions service that provides for social need, not the greed of a few stinking rats who get way with stealing from pension funds and playing routlette with our money.
We say tax the rich and big business, close the loopholes that allows them to get away with contributing nothing to society. Apply the same vigour to these robbers that the state applies to poor single parents who fail to declare a few extra pounds they earn while trying to live off meagre benefits.
At the same time we must organise to fight for the rights of migrant workers and their families. As far as we’re concerned, they deserve the same rights as British-born workers. If jobs and houses are what divide the working class, then we should make sure that everyone who needs a home has one, and that everyone who is able to work is given the opportunity to do so.
Basic to all of this is the right for workers to organise in trade unions, to withdraw their labour power in a collective show of strength and bring a halt to attacks on jobs, services and rights at work.
We want the anti-union laws brought in by Margaret Thatcher and the Tories all those years ago and boasted about by Tony Blair when he was New Labour Prime Minster and upheld by Gordon Brown — we want all of them to be scrapped.
Is it so unreasonable that those who create the wealth in our society, the working class, might have the freedom to organise without the shackles of the bosses’ anti-union laws? We don’t think so!
When that tide of cuts starts to push back our living standards, decimate our services, and rob us of our dignity, we will need to be prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder, linking arms — workers across the public sector, with service users and workers in the private sector.
The cuts seem to be inevitable. How the working class responds is not. While we may not yet be able to control natural disasters, we do have the potential to control capitalist made disasters. We have the ideas, the creativity, and we have the numbers — the working class is in the majority.
The task ahead of us, the challenge that we all have a responsibility to strive to rise to meet, is to organise — to flex our collective muscle in the interests of building a fairer, better society where the majority’s needs sit triumphantly above the minority’s greed.
Never go to bed thinking this is the best we can do, never wake up in the morning thinking this is the best humanity can achieve. It can’t be and it isn’t!