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From The Socialist newspaper, 31 July 2019

Tolpuddle festival 2019: socialist policies to end Tory rule and austerity

Socialist Party members at Tolpuddle 2019, photo by Jane Ward

Socialist Party members at Tolpuddle 2019, photo by Jane Ward   (Click to enlarge)

Jane Ward, Southampton Socialist Party

Thousands of activists and trade unionists attended the Tolpuddle festival over the weekend of 20-21 July.

The festival is held to celebrate the memory of the Tolpuddle Martyrs - agricultural workers who were arrested and transported to Australia in 1834 for forming a trade union.

Socialist Party members who attended called for an immediate general election to oust Boris Johnson and the Tory government, which was met with complete agreement by the large majority of people who stopped to talk to us.

They saw the urgent need to stop Boris in his tracks and for a Labour government with socialist policies.

However, there was an undercurrent of worry that the massive onslaught from the pro-capitalist media and from the Blairite wing of his own party might mean that Corbyn may not win the election.

For the second successive year the crowds were slightly down in number as the initial euphoria over Jeremy Corbyn as Labour's leader has declined.

Even so, members from Southern and South West regions of the Socialist Party managed to sell 111 papers and raise 185 for the fighting fund.

Jeremy Corbyn gave the final speech at Tolpuddle. He said that he wanted the next Labour government's legacy to be as great as the one in 1945.

He stated that he intended to found a national education service where education "from the cradle to the grave" is a right, not a commodity.

He made many pledges for socialist policies to end austerity, poverty and combat climate change. He promised that a Labour government would repeal the Trade Union Act.

Concluding, Corbyn gave a rallying call for the labour movement to be united on its policies because he believed a united movement can defeat the Tories and win an election.

However, that requires that he takes on the Blairite saboteurs and democratises the Labour Party.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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In The Socialist 31 July 2019:


What we think

Boris, Brexit and British capitalism

CWI refounded with determination and confidence


Special feature

"The longest, darkest days of my life": fighting Universal Credit


Socialist Party news and analysis

Build a working-class movement to force an election

Labour promises to end council privatisation: councils must do that now!

Tories look in wrong place for climate solutions

Lib Dems: little bosses' party elects eager pro-austerity leader

Aristocrats are rich after all... and getting richer


International socialist news and analysis

Mass movement topples governor of Puerto Rico

Hong Kong: the struggle for democratic rights escalates


Workplace news and analysis

Lobby the TUC for workers' action to defeat Johnson

Northern Ireland: Harland and Wolff shipyard workers enter occupation

"Enough is enough": 20,000 Northern Ireland civil servants strike against pay restraint

Plymouth posties deliver defiant message to bullying bosses

"BEIS: stop pISSing about and give outsourcing the boot!"

Hackney transport strike - blockade foils employers

Sainsbury's distribution workers' second 24-hour strike against cuts to sick pay

Nottingham Deliveroo riders strike against unfair algorithm

Bromley library workers strike against running down


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Enfield: 100% council homes at Meridian Water!

Walthamstow shopping centre fire: people's plan - not disaster capitalism

Tolpuddle festival 2019: socialist policies to end Tory rule and austerity

Barking: campaigning over housing safety

July climate strikes: link up with the workers' movement

Ilford: parents and teachers unite against school cuts

Boris Johnson 'coronation' - demos say: boot him out!

The Socialist Party has moved!


Opinion

The Socialist inbox

Huge workload, low pay and unpaid hours - a day in the life of a teaching assistant


 

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Related links:

Tolpuddle:

triangleTolpuddle festival: combative trade unionism and anticipation of general election

triangle'Let the producers of wealth unite - and what can withstand them?'

triangleLarge and upbeat Tolpuddle event

triangleMood to defeat the Blairites

triangleBristol North East Socialist Party: The Tolpuddle Martyrs & trade unionism

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