Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/951/25583
Politics has been shaken up
After 8 June: build the socialist fightback
For years the vast majority of us have suffered cuts in our living standards. Cuts in pay, jobs, homes, services.
We are angry that the super-rich, who are responsible for the economic crisis, have made themselves richer while we have been hammered. A 14% rise in the wealth of the top 1,000 people in Britain happened in the last year alone.
For too long there has been no mass alternative for working class people. Labour had been transformed by the pro-big business Blairites.
The Socialist Party has long advocated the creation of a mass working class party with socialist policies. That is why we are part of the Trade Union and Socialist Coalition alongside transport workers' union RMT and other socialists.
But when Jeremy Corbyn was elected leader of Labour, it opened up the possibility of achieving that at least partly through the Labour Party. Many people saw this.
We have fully backed Jeremy Corbyn in the general election campaign. His policies - such as a £10 an hour minimum wage, ending zero-hour contracts, spending more on public services, greater public ownership of privatised services, and free education - have proved hugely popular.
Corbyn's campaign showed millions that an alternative to the austerity consensus is possible. Discussions on what makes an effective socialist programme have opened up.
Whatever the result of the general election, politics has been shaken up. But after the election the fight goes on!
If Corbyn wins, it will raise the hopes of millions that we can at last change things.
But that desire for change will be up against the massive opposition of big business and the capitalist establishment - including EU bosses. Just look at the way the media treated Corbyn.
He will also be working in the teeth of opposition from the Blairite wing of Labour, which will do its best to sabotage Corbyn's programme.
A mass movement will need to be built from below to counter this. The Labour Party will have to be transformed, allowing members the right to choose their MPs and decide policies. The discussion on how to carry through socialist ideas will need to be continued.
If May wins, it will be the opposite of a "strong and stable" government.
The Tories will try to push through further attacks on working class living standards. But their u-turns during and before the election campaign show their weakness. Resistance in workplaces, in communities and on the streets will be built, and can stop them in their tracks.
Whatever the result, more than ever we will need to build the struggle for a clear socialist alternative.
The Socialist Party has been fighting for the strategy the workers' movement needs at every step. We'll continue to do so.
In The Socialist 31 May 2017:
What we think
Socialist Party news and analysis
Fighting Tory schools cuts
International socialist news and analysis
Workplace news and analysis
Tory attacks on mental health care
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Socialist readers' comments and reviews