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Showing posts from June, 2017

Reclaiming Socialism

Capitalism is now being increasingly challenged.  Yet socialism has lost its position as the goal. The “socialist” parties now support capitalism but with a human face. The word "socialism" lacks a clear, concrete definition.  To enrich and strengthen anti-capitalism by giving it such a definitive objective, we need to envision a socialism that can inspire and motivate.
The ability to find paid work is rooted within supply and demand. If there is a demand for your labour, and few can supply it in the same way you do, you will do well. If many can supply it just like you, you may not do so well, but you may also manage to just get by if you’re lucky.  Without paid work, you suffer deprivation and misery. we cannot guarantee that everyone can always find jobs for the fulfilment of their basic needs. The Socialist Party proposes that can stop requiring the exchange of money for basic needs, making things like food, water, and shelter entirely free.  This would end the price sys…

Thieving Banks

Nine out of 10 easy access savings accounts pay interest of less than 1%. Moneyfacts found that a third of easy access accounts failed to even pay a rate matching the current base rate of 0.25%. The cost of living is rising at 2.9% a year, so many savings rates are failing to keep pace. Moneyfacts said people faced a "never-ending battle" for decent returns.
The Bank of England pointed to the potential dangers from the "benign" economic conditions, highlighting growing levels of consumer borrowing on credit cards and car finance. The same conditions have led to the paltry rates of return for savers, with the Bank of England base rate having been at a record lows for years.  Government lending initiatives and consecutive cuts to bank base rate have resulted in savings rates plummeting," said Rachel Springall, of Moneyfacts. "To add insult to injury, the governor of the Bank of England's view is that there will not be a rise to interest rates in the for…

We Need Your Voice

If we do not resist, we languish. Although these are trying times, we cannot afford to withdraw into despair. We must discover once more the solidarity to stand together firm. We must fight the fear that grips us. This time around, let’s fight for socialism from the start. Revolution cannot be an abstract idea or distant-goal. It must be a living, breathing social movement that brings hope. Revolution will not be a single spectacular event, but instead it is a process. The important part is to come together and build power from below that does not rest in the hands of any leader or party in any way. The Socialist Party strategy relies on the unity at the ballot box, a strategy which begins with us, the exploited workers. We must push for greater unity of working-class movements. We need to reach out to our fellow-workers.
Let’s build structures that ensure workers keep control. Let us not hand over political power to a State that can institute tyranny all over again. Exploitation bloss…

Scottish Nationalism (1968)

From the May 1968 issue of the Socialist Standard
In the Scottish National Party, they must feel that somebody up there likes them. Right now they are on top of the world and everywhere the signs are apparent. The Party badge— a hipped-up thistle—sprouts as thickly as the weed itself. Membership has rocketed to over ninety thousand, and all the frenzied electoral activity has resulted in the election of a Nationalist M.P.
Undoubtedly, independence is the current big issue and the Nationalists claim they will have it by the early ’seventies. How have the SNP been transformed from the old image of a bunch of Tartan-clad cranks into a considerable political force? The Party is still the expression of some “Professional” and small-business people who see their advancement in breaking with England, but they now enjoy what they never had before—widespread working class support, although how constant this remains to be seen.
This support was a long time coming, but the breakthrough was helpe…

What Over-population Problem?

Scotland’s birth rate is falling. Births are more than a third less than needed to maintain our working age population. All the while, the number of deaths registered exceeds births as our population shrinks. There’s been negligible overall growth since the 1961 census. Our 2011 survey gave Scotland just 100,000 more people. All of those were pensioners. In the first five months of this year, Registers of Scotland has recorded only 21,742 births. Last year, births were 664 higher during those same months. Ten years ago there were 3,275 more births. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/opinion/readers-letters/455532/scotland-needs-urgent-population-boost/

The world under new ownership

He who owns the means whereby I live, owns me” - Shakespeare 
Ownership and control of the means of production are inseparable. The State, in the hands of the capitalists, is used as a terrific weapon of class warfare.  Some people confuse the term State with Society and regard them as synonymous. Actually, the State arose with the institution of private property and became the authority of propertied interests over society in the name of society. The State was obliged to intervene in industrial disputes partly as conciliator and regulator though always as the custodian of property interests. It governs society in the interests of property and can do no other.  The State does not rush to the rescue of the working class. The questions of ownership and control became principal questions. The demand for the nationalisation of this and that industry became popular. The machine of State becomes larger, its powers of repression grows enormously and wage-slavery remains. Class-war continues…

Our Revolution

At times we have an inability to see what is in front of our own eyes. Imagine a world run along truly democratic lines. There would be no politicians. People can show incredible acts of kindness to and sacrifice for others, even strangers. Some will even give up their own lives for strangers.Human life is a product of the evolution of life on earth. Human life is not independent and separate from the planet but a part of it. The relationship of human species with nature and all life forms is that of interdependence. We must not embrace the despair of a bleak future that capitalism is creating. We must acknowledge acts of resistance, even if it appears futile, as small victories. Our character and dignity will be measured by our ability to resist the malignant forces that seem to hold us in a death grip. Our technology and science will not save us. The future of humanity is now in our own hands. At best, we can mitigate the misery. We cannot avoid it. We are fighting for our survival …

Manifesto for a decent future

Imagine if instead of fighting one another to defend the interests of our masters, we began to protect the people and the planet against our common threats: profiteering, poverty war, and nationalism. This is not some ridiculous utopian dream but simply recognising the greater good rather than the petty political or economic divisions. Imagining the world without hunger, conflict or disease isn't impossible.  The future of humanity needn't be about the power-hungry and war-mongering elite. Socialism is not the absence of rules, it is just the absence of rulers. This dysfunctional society stems directly from the capitalist economic system. Socialism focuses on reclaiming earth's resources for the people – all the people. It will replace the money-based exchange economies with a production for use world economy, restoring our damaged natural environment to the best of our ability by developing and using clean renewable energy sources, redesigning cities, transport, in…

The Gospel According To St. Andrew (1907)

Dunfermline's Carnegie Library has been recently renovated so perhaps it is timely to remember the man himself . From the April 1907 issue of the Socialist Standard
Andrew Carnegie, library purveyor and morality expert (what a tribe of experts there seems to be in the world) has been at it again, He thinks “wealth is so obviously unequally distributed that the attention of civilised man must he attracted to it from time to time.” He adds "no amount of charity in spending fortunes in any way compensates for misconduct in making them.” He quotes with approval President Roosevelt's statement that he “would discriminate in the sharpest way between fortunes well won and fortunes ill won, between those gained well as a whole and those gained in evil fashion by keeping just within the bounds of mere law honesty.” and concludes, “There are fortunes swollen beyond all healthy limits; but I say my partners are the people ” !
Dear, good Saint Andrew! His partners are the people. How…

Our Socialist Future

Capitalism can be reformed. It can be reformed in many ways. But it cannot be reformed in such a manner as to effect an essential improvement in the working class conditions of life. It cannot be reformed in such a manner as to raise the workers from the poverty level. Reforms, insofar as they have had any effect, have been effective simply by preventing the workers from sinking too far below the poverty level, their function being to do no more than preserve the workers as able-bodied means of production.

It is not in the nature of capitalist society to provide better conditions for its slave class. The efficient operation of capitalist industry requires not only a capable working class, it requires a working class always at the beck and call of the master class. Only by keeping the workers bordering on necessity at all times can this condition be assured. The whiplash of poverty is far more effective than any coercive force could be in keeping them tied to the machine and subservient…

A Message from the Socialist Party of Canada

Capitalist ideas dominate the political economic and social scene for the capitalist own and control the means of propagation, education, information and news. Thus, all discussion and debate is undertaken on their terms. It should be clear, then, that bosses ideology serves capitalist interests not only when it provides pro-capitalist solutions to pressing social problems but also when it confuses people, or makes them overly pessimistic and resigned, or makes it difficult for them to formulate criticisms or imagine alternative systems.
The Socialist Party of Canada and its companion parties in the United States, Great Britain, India and New Zealand stand alone in their respective countries in their consistent advocacy of the socialist solution. Their examination of society has taught them that nothing less than socialism can suffice, and they have adopted a common set of socialist principles (first formulated by the Socialist Party of Great Britain) which constitutes the basis of the…