Thursday, August 01, 2019

For a better world

Socialism means a world without nations and passports, borders and barriers. By replacing production for profit with a society based on production direct for human needs, socialism will do away with prices and profits, buying and selling, money and markets. In the process, socialism will remove war — not by deterring it with ever more destructive weapons, nor by futile attempts to ban the weapons — but by removing capitalism, the cause of war.

In the world today we have the resources, the technology, the skills and the knowledge to satisfy everyone's needs — in food, housing and everything else — several times over. No informed person can deny it. But we cannot fully apply that capability in a society where the aim of production is achieving a profit. We can only use them in a society where the purpose of production is human needs.

This means establishing a society without money — where we don't needlessly ration ourselves.

This means a society without wages — where we aren't forced to work for an employer just to survive. but where we can choose the work we want to do for our own satisfaction and for the benefit of the community as a whole.

This means a society without frontiers and nations — where the world's resources and knowledge are used rationally and not in the irrational manner determined by "market forces" or governments, condemning millions to hunger while food and other essentials are available in huge quantities.

This means a society without wars or the threat of wars — because wars in the modern world are caused by economic and trade rivalries between nations, and in a world that is united there won't be such rivalries to fight over. Every day inside this society erupt some new battleground opens somewhere in the world. Every day capitalism puts lives on the line to fight over land or minerals or markets. Capitalism produces many conflicts between nations. It produces many strategies, alliances and rivalries which cannot be ignored. But whatever the battles are fought over, it’s not in the interests of the vast majority that are at stake. There's only a few people who stand to win or lose in times of war. Simply read the business pages of the newspapers to learn who. Of course it's not the shareholders or the CEO's who do the fighting, who encourage nationalism, who profit from war-mongering. They stay safe in their board-rooms, sabre-rattling while letting others do the dying.

A lot of people say to the Socialist Party “all that this sounds very nice but people are lazy, greedy and belligerent, and you can't change human nature".

We reply to this that human beings may well be lazy, greedy and aggressive, but that they can be and they usually are in their daily life co-operative, generous and caring. If we organise society — and we can do it easily — so that everything we need to live comfortably is there (in other words we have free access to all goods and services), then we are more likely, in these circumstances, to behave in an altruistic and amicable way. So we're not asking people to be "saints" or “angels". We're simply asking them to see that a fundamental change in the way society is organised — which we call socialism — is in their individual interests, in their children's interests, and in the interest of society as a whole.

The simple fact is that given access to natural resources and new technology, one worker can produce the basic material necessities for one person in a fraction of each day, or week, or year. In a sane system of society this would happen, and the remaining time could be spent in improving the quality of life, safely and happily guaranteeing decent food and housing for every human being.

But the Socialist Party doesn't exist to bring about this state of affairs for you. We exist to spread the ideas we've outlined and to be used, if people want to use us, to vote out the present system of buying and selling and production for profit and vote in a new system of common ownership, production for use and free access to all goods and services. And just as it must be voted in democratically. this new system can only be run democratically — by everyone — with all having equal access to everything it produces.

The Chartists did not struggle for democracy to be turned into a television reality show. The Chartists fought for the right to vote and campaigned for the chance to participate in democracy. They knew that once they had the vote as a weapon, they possessed a means to power in society. Our fellow workers today in dictatorships must recognise that when the electoral process has been appropriated by unelected, unaccountable media chiefs who take it upon themselves to dominate what workers read, hear and view before they vote. This is an erosion of meaningful democracy by the arrogance of the media bosses in full collusion of the major capitalist parties who have decided to abandon real debate and opted for stage-managed sound-bites. Theatricals have replaced politics. What we are saying is that the media has taken it upon themselves to lay out the electoral agenda, excluding all reference to the revolutionary socialist alternative, a threat to the rights which workers have fought for, a threat to socialists. The Socialist Party is interested in ideas, not photogenic personalities.

If you put your faith in the media, place your trust in politicians, and surrender your reason to the the imaginations on Twitter, the next thing you could find yourself giving up is your life.

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