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From The Socialist newspaper, 13 November 2019

Why I joined the Socialist Party

I'm 90 and still a socialist - Blair chased me out of Labour

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher teaches former Labour Party leader Tony Blair how to grind the working class down, photo Alan Hardman

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher teaches former Labour Party leader Tony Blair how to grind the working class down, photo Alan Hardman   (Click to enlarge)

Roger Priest, Aylesbury Socialist Party

I'm coming up to 90 and have been a socialist since 18. I became an active socialist in the labour movement in the East End of London before moving to Buckinghamshire after the war.

I was active in the Labour Party, and 'father of the chapel' (union branch secretary) of the largest printing press in southern England. I was the Labour parliamentary candidate against David Lidington, now a Tory minister, when he first stood for Aylesbury in 1992.

I have always been on the left, and resigned from the Labour Party when Tony Blair went to war in 2003. I resigned because Labour had moved to the right under Blair and I couldn't function as a socialist under his regime.

About ten years ago, I met a comrade in the Socialist Party in Aylesbury. I found that my beliefs coincided with theirs, especially in relation to the economy and nationalising its commanding heights, a policy the right wing is continually undermining.

I remain active to this day when I can. I still discuss politics and encourage people to join the Socialist Party and trade unions.

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Finance appeal

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.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 13 November 2019:


What we think

Attacks show elite fear a Corbyn election win


News

Strike, protest, vote - Kick the Tories out

Labour MP targeted by right wing stands as independent

NHS in critical condition

Green Party offers no alternative for young people and climate change chaos


International socialist news and analysis

Bolivia: Right-wing coup ousts Morales

Kshama Sawant reelected in Seattle


Workplace news

'McStrikers' demand 15 an hour

UCU strikes: Union means business in fight against employers

Postal union determined to resist bosses' attacks

PCS union general secretary election: Enthusiastic support for Marion Lloyd

Frimley NHS Trust strikes: Health workers walkout against privatisation

Bradford libraries and museums: Unite members escalate action against cuts

RMT union members at SWR to walk out in December

Transport for London - Justice for cleaners!


Education

Save education - Kick out the Tories


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Leicester campaigns to save our NHS

Fighting for free education, jobs, homes, and a future worth living

Socialism 2019 rally: "Socialist change needed to end climate change"

Trade union conference to force secret police disclosure

Barking: protest brings pledge to remove dangerous decking

Help socialist ideas spread this election: donate!

We saved Chatsworth Ward - two years on

I'm 90 and still a socialist


Readers' opinion

Readers' opinion: Twitter's banning of political ads threatens workers' voice

Theatre: On Bear Ridge - an examination of loss, set in a post-apocalyptic world

Socialism 2019 - what you thought


 

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