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From The Socialist newspaper, 31 July 2019

Lobby the TUC for workers' action to defeat Johnson

Part of last year's NSSN lobby of TUC congress, 9.9.18, photo Mary Finch

Part of last year's NSSN lobby of TUC congress, 9.9.18, photo Mary Finch   (Click to enlarge)

Rob Williams, chair, National Shop Stewards Network

It's finally happened. Boris Johnson is in Downing Street. His wing of the Tory party hopes that his maverick rollercoaster can power through to a snap general election win.

He's already shown that he can utter crude bigotry from one corner of his mouth while promising vague spending commitments from the other.

All designed to paint a picture of a 'plain-speaking man of the people'. But like Donald Trump, the only people he ultimately represents are the big business elite.

Despite the bravado of the right-wing press, the capitalist establishment is taking a leap into the dark with Johnson, in order to try and find a way out of the Brexit logjam. Particularly as they and the Tory party are split over the way forward.

But a Boris Brexit, like a Cameron Remain, would be in the interests of big business.

The only thing that unites them all is their determination to avoid a Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour government.

Even in her farewell speech, Theresa May called on Corbyn to follow her off the political scene. In this, they are all joined by their Blairite agents in the Labour Party.

The Tories remember the last time they went for a snap general election. In 2017, the opinion polls predicted a Theresa May landslide but Corbyn's manifesto of renationalisation, a 10-an-hour minimum wage and abolishing tuition fees, totally transformed the election, denying the Tories a majority and deepening their crisis.

That electoral turnaround was based on the economic and social crisis facing ordinary people. Corbyn's best bet to defeat a populist such as Johnson, who is dishonestly targeting working-class people, is to fight on a programme of socialist policies.

The capitalist establishment worries that a Corbyn government could raise the sights of workers, who could push him further to the left.

They would expect it to intervene if their jobs were threatened and could be prepared to take action if necessary.

Just in the last few months, we've seen closures and mass redundancies announced or threatened across industry.

Shipyard workers in Harland and Wolff in Belfast closed the gates on 29 July to demand assurances over their futures, calling for the shipyard to be nationalised.

The anger that exists must be mobilised by the unions to fight for a general election to get rid of Johnson and all the Tories.

The National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) is again holding a rally at the congress of the trade union federation TUC in Brighton to build such a campaign of action.

The TUC should be a council of war to bring together all the increasing number of disputes with other channels of discontent, such as the climate strike on 20 September. Come to the NSSN rally and build the campaign for a general election.

NSSN lobby of TUC congress 2019

Sunday 8 September 1pm at Holiday Inn, Kings Road, Brighton BN1 2JF

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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


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

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

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