Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/828/19462

From The Socialist newspaper, 8 October 2014

Scotland: Workers need a new mass party

SNP won't fight the cuts

Scotland Referendum, Socialist Party Scotland stall, photo SP Scotland

Scotland Referendum, Socialist Party Scotland stall, photo SP Scotland   (Click to enlarge)

Ian Leech, Socialist Party Scotland

Labour's treacherous role in fronting the successful 'No' campaign in the independence referendum has made trade union members eager to hit Labour in the pocket.

Scottish trade union branches have recently had members asking whether they're paying money into the Labour Party via the unions' affiliated political fund. Glasgow Unison branch received many calls from members.

Some insisted they wanted to switch their donation from Labour to the Scottish National Party (SNP) despite Unison rules not allowing this. Others demanded to be able to switch from the Affiliated Fund to the General (Campaigning) Fund, vital to the union's ability to publicly campaign on issues.

The anger at Labour is so great that people are questioning whether Labour will continue for much longer in Scotland! Other unions who backed a no vote reported huge losses in membership including Usdaw, losing 8,000 members in the few days after the referendum.

Glasgow Unison was able to explain to members that despite the national trade union's formal affiliation, Glasgow branch's official policy is to call for disaffiliation from Labour. It believes the party no longer represents the interests of working class people.

To stem the tide of threatened resignations the branch placed this information in a public forum on the website and on Facebook. This seems to have succeeded and appeared as an article in the Herald newspaper.

The SNP, which reportedly gained 75,000 new members, have been the main beneficiaries of the anger expressed by those 1.6 million 'Yes' voters. However the SNP government in Holyrood will now carry through 2 billion cuts in public spending, held back until after the referendum.

This will place the trade unions' struggle against austerity at the centre of events; and with the general election looming it will be vital to put forward an independent working class alternative to the electorate.


No to Poll Tax victimisation

Ronnie Stevenson, secretary, Mount Florida Anti-Poll Tax Union

The Scottish Government has announced it intends to write-off historic Poll Tax debt in Scotland - and not before time.

This final victory for the anti-poll tax movement, 25 years after the hated poll tax was introduced, is welcome. More than 425 million remains uncollected to date.

In the run-up to the referendum hundred of thousands registered to vote, many for the first time since the Poll Tax. And the highest percentage of people in decades actually voted.

Immediately following the referendum many councils and politicians scandalously began to use the new lists of voters to pursue those who did not pay their full Poll Tax bills.

This attempt at collective punishment was the trigger for the SNP government announcement.

After a tremendous campaign of mass non-payment (a tactic led by Militant, the forerunner of Socialist Party Scotland) the hated Poll Tax was withdrawn and Thatcher resigned.

During that campaign councillors of all political parties pursued non-payers using the full variety of the methods the state afforded them, including jailing them in England and Wales.

These same councillors have written off millions of pounds of debt owed by businesses over these years.

They didn't seem to want to do the same for the paltry debts by comparison arising from the Poll Tax.

The Poll Tax non-payment army are remembered with affection, responsible as they were for getting rid of an unfair tax but also Thatcher.

Why it took the SNP seven years of government to propose this legislation is a legitimate question.

Now MSPs and councillors should be taking a lead from the mass movement that defeated the poll tax and start leading a struggle against the austerity programmes being imposed by Westminster.

It's time to stop implementing Tory cuts and refuse to make one penny more of cuts in already decimated local authority services.


TUSC

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) is an electoral alliance that stands candidates against all cuts and privatisation. It involves the RMT transport workers' union, leading members of other trade unions including the PCS, NUT and POA, as well as the Socialist Party and other left and anti-cuts groups and individuals.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 8 October 2014:


Socialist Party news and analysis

We need ideas to change the world

NHS - The black hole

UK - A tax haven for the super-rich

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

South Africa: "A workers' party must emerge"

Middle East: Repel IS and Western imperialism

Coordinated attacks on Hong Kong movement

Ebola crisis: Consequence of profit before health

Stop corporate plunder of Bangladesh energy


Socialist Party workplace news

We can beat the pay freeze!

Public sector: why we have to strike

RMT tube workers join October action

Teachers: Pay rise? What pay rise?

Support Care UK day of action

Sheffield: Green workers red with anger

M25 maintenance workers protest


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Training tomorrow's trade union militants

Finance to fight for the future

School students organise disabled rights meeting

Ice cream, you scream, we all scream for 10 now!


Readers' comments

Exhaustion from buzzer to buzzer

Bedroom Tax: Still making tenants' lives hell

Scotland: Workers need a new mass party

Correction: Labour's private health links are worse!

Thatcher's enemies within


Obituary

Andrew Price: Fighter, teacher, party campaigner


 

Home   |   The Socialist 8 October 2014   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

SNP:

triangleWhere is Scotland going?

triangleScotland - SNP loses but Labour could've won more

triangleElectric atmosphere at Corbyn rally

triangleCorbyn could re-win Scotland with a socialist approach to independence

triangleIndyref 2: SNP fire the starting gun

Austerity:

triangleIs cuts-making Preston 'beating Tory austerity'?

triangleNo more excuses: fit sprinklers now!

triangleTories on the brink - kick them out!

triangleStrike wave continues with 49 walkout days by housing workers

TUSC:

triangleToo much to cross the Mersey

triangleSurveying Labour councillors - will they fight cuts?

triangleLabour mayor needs to stop all cuts

Labour:

triangleCorbyn must challenge pro-gentrification council leader or others will

triangleSocialism 2017: Organising to fight back

Union:

triangleWarrington Socialist Party: The battle of Winwick Quay

Unions:

triangleChatsworth neuro-rehab ward still open - unions join the campaign

Glasgow:

triangleGlasgow jannies win famous victory against council cutters

Reviews and comments

Reviews and comments

15/11/17

The Socialist

The Socialist Inbox

15/11/17

Abortion

TV review: Abortion on Trial - hard-hitting look at impact of 1967 act

15/11/17

Vietnam war

Comprehensive account of bloody conflict

8/11/17

Letters

The Socialist inbox

8/11/17

Obituary

Obituary: Paul Randall, 1959-2017

8/11/17

Theatre

Welsh update of Chekhov an engrossing tale of 1980s class conflict

1/11/17

Letters

The Socialist inbox

25/10/17

Letters

The Socialist inbox

25/10/17

Fidel Castro

New musical on life of Castro

25/10/17

Film

Film - Dennis Skinner: Nature of the Beast

25/10/17

Russian revolution

Well-deserved ridicule of Stalinism is impressive, funny but flawed

18/10/17

Port Talbot

Powerful picture of the Port Talbot steel workers' struggle

18/10/17

Russian revolution

October 1917 reviews: 'More bright than any heaven'

11/10/17

Theresa May

Theresa May, Frida Kahlo and turning women into wares

11/10/17

Docks

Poverty, repression and fightback on the docks

triangleMore Reviews and comments articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle21 Nov Zimbabwe: Mugabe gone - but his regime remains in power

triangle15 Nov March for free education! We demand a future!

triangle15 Nov Tories on the brink - kick them out!

Socialism 2017

triangle14 Nov Socialism 2017: Organising to fight back

triangle13 Nov Strike wave continues with 49 walkout days by housing workers

triangle10 Nov US: Historic vote for Ginger Jentzen campaign in Minneapolis

triangle10 Nov Strikers picket the South Western Railway network

More ...

triangle21 Nov Bristol North Socialist Party: Venezuela - the battle to be faced by a Corbyn government?

triangle21 Nov Cardiff Socialist Students: Socialism and the struggle for LGBT rights

triangle21 Nov Birmingham South East Socialist Party: NHS in Meltdown - What can be done?

triangle21 Nov Sheffield North Socialist Party: The causes of capitalist crisis

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2