Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/626/9574
Socialist Party national committee discusses building the fightback
The Socialist Party's National Committee (NC) met on Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 May to discuss the party's recent and future work and how a fightback can be built against the new coalition government's attacks on jobs and services.
The first discussion was introduced by the party's general secretary, Peter Taaffe, who looked at issues ranging from the general and local election results to the international sovereign debt crisis in which capitalist governments aim to make working class and young people pay for bank bailouts. Peter said that putting forward a socialist challenge to the idea that 'there is no alternative' should be part of fighting massive cuts in jobs and services.
The discussion that followed touched on many issues including how a silent slaughter of council jobs and services has already begun before June's 'bloodbath budget', how trade unions could fight against cuts, how the Scottish and Welsh administrations could be affected by the new UK government, the British Airways dispute, fighting racism and the British National Party, and what the election results mean for young people.
Peter Taaffe also led a tribute to Peter Hadden, the Northern secretary of the Socialist Party in Ireland, who died at the age of 60 on 5 May following a three year fight against cancer. His tribute speech was followed by a one minute silence observed by the NC. (See the obituaries in issues 624 and 625 of The Socialist for information on Peter Hadden's life and political work.)
Sunday's meeting included a discussion on building the Socialist Party, which was introduced by Sarah Sachs-Eldridge. This discussion included reports of the Socialist Party's general election campaigns, including the work in the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition, the need to build anti-cuts campaigns, the importance of fighting cuts in colleges and universities before the end of the current education calendar, and remarks on how more people are saying that they 'hate politicians', but want to join the Socialist Party.
Local Socialist Party branches should arrange to get a full report of the weekend meeting from an NC member in their area.
Two books written by Peter Hadden:
- Divide and Rule By Peter Hadden
Divide and Rule provides a marxist analysis of the division of Ireland and gives historical examples showing that Catholic and Protestant workers can be united.
£4 plus 50p postage and packaging
- Northern Ireland: Towards Division Not Peace - Can the working class unite to build a real peace process? By Peter Hadden
Written in 2001, initially as a document for discussion within the Socialist Party (Ireland), this pamphlet shows how the capitalist 'peace process' increased sectarian polarisation and puts forward the building of a united movement among working class people as the only way towards a real solution.
£3 plus 50p postage and packaging
Available from Socialist Books
PO Box 24697, London E11 1YD
020 8988 8789 www.socialistbooks.org.uk
In The Socialist 26 May 2010:
National Shop Stewards Network
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party workplace news
Socialist Party feature
International socialist news and analysis