Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/251/24764
Standing For The Millions, Not The Millionaires
NEW LABOUR'S policies are generating no enthusiasm for the 2 May local council elections in England. A poll of potential voters by ICM and The Guardian suggests an all-time low turnout of 25% or 26% of voters.
This is despite Gordon Brown's budget and its increases in NHS funding. Most people think more health spending is long overdue but they are waiting to see whether it brings real improvements.
New Labour has taken money from ordinary working-class families while leaving their rich friends untouched. New Labour is now an openly capitalist party with big donations from their well-heeled friends. Six of the 11 top big-business political donations last year went to New Labour.
And where's the money going? Much of the increased spending will go to big business - the huge pharmaceutical bosses or the construction giants who make money out of Private Finance Initiatives (PFIs).
The new PFI-built hospital in North Durham will cost £22 million more than building an identical new hospital in the public sector. New Labour chose the private option!
Tony Blair even went on national TV this week to warn workers in NHS unions of a 'showdown' if they opposed more privatisation in the health service.
All the major parties - New Labour, Tories, Liberal-Democrats - stand for the millionaires not the millions. They won't listen and will continue with their policies of privatising public services and putting big-business interests above ordinary people's needs. They all viciously cut local councils' public services.
So anyone can understand voters' disillusionment. But abstaining in the election won't save our services. We need a totally different kind of political party - one made up of ordinary working-class people and one which fights for our interests.
Vote for Socialist Party / Socialist Alternative candidates where they are standing and join us to fight for change. We want a system which takes the economy out of the hands of the super-rich minority.
This would allow working-class people to own and democratically control the economy and to plan society to meet the needs of the majority and not just to safeguard the interests of a wealthy, privileged few.
In The Socialist 26 April 2002: