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From The Socialist newspaper, 20 January 2021

Why I joined the Socialist Party: Looking at history has shown me that everything is possible!

Campaigning in Reading in December 2020, photo Reading Socialist Party

Campaigning in Reading in December 2020, photo Reading Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

Jen Bottom, Reading Socialist Party

Before I started educating myself, I'm sorry to say that, in part, I fell for the media coverage of 'scrounging benefit cheats'. Documentary footage of someone saying they couldn't afford to buy food, before showing their large expensive-looking TV and other gadgets, did wind me up, as someone who has a disability and has had to rely on charity to fill in the gaps in state provision.

But even then, I was questioning the system, though I had not yet formulated my thoughts enough.

Looking at a few individual people is not the issue. We need to ask: why do we have a system that does not address the causes and only treats the symptoms?

Perhaps there will always be a few people who are able to play a system to get a bit of a leg up, but that's nothing compared to what the entire system of capitalism is doing!

When I started realising this I first joined the Green Party. But I recently concluded their policies didn't seem to go far enough.

Initially, I was scared to look at a more left-wing party because of the one-sided media coverage, and my capitalist education. But once I was brave enough to do some reading and investigating, I found the Socialist Party.

The Socialist Party's non-sectarian approach and policies certainly seem like the best way forward to me. I decided to join, and since then I've done so much more than just pay my subs and read generic emails.

I've been encouraged to ask questions and talk about anything I'm uncomfortable with, which has helped me get a different perspective on many of the common reasons people give for being against socialism.

I have evaluated the arguments from both camps and found those of the capitalists wanting.

I'm also playing an active role within my local branch, and even felt confident enough to speak at some of the Socialism2020 discussions.

Looking at history has shown me that nothing is set in stone and everything is possible. I therefore encourage anyone interested in a fairer and more equal society to join the Socialist Party and start pushing for the change we want to see.

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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.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
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In The Socialist 20 January 2021:


News

Make the super-rich pay, not the poorest

Bosses profit out of 'starvation' food parcels

Teachers: On the front line, in their own words

Peace and Justice Project - no way forward for socialism

Millionaire tendency regains control of Scottish Labour

News in Brief


Covid-19

The Tory blame game: scapegoating the working class - 100% pay for all now

Covid: Bosses chase profit and put workers in danger

Vaccine confidence - a worker's response

Life in lockdown - being home from school when you're poor is hard


NHS

On the NHS front line


Black Lives Matter

Justice for Mohamud Hassan!

Police use Covid laws to intimidate BLM protesters

New Cross Gate fire 40 years ago


International News

USA in crisis - the need for a socialist alternative

Trump Twitter ban: only independent workers' voice can defeat right


Workplace

PCS Broad Left Network conference

Rolls-Royce Barnoldswick factory future secured following strike action

Morrisons - 10/hr headline hides divisive pay offer

A day in the life of an agency worker

British Gas strike continues


Students

Refund student rent and fees

Plymouth rent strike continues

Scrap fees, refund rents and pay a living grant


Campaigns

London's May elections: Tories and Labour's Khan both vying to slash public services

Socialist Party national women's meeting

Why I joined the Socialist Party

Christmas Crossword Competition


Readers' Opinion

Books that inspired me: The Road to Wigan Pier


Obituary

Obituary - Jeff Edwards


 

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triangleTrump Twitter ban: only independent workers' voice can defeat right

Capitalism:

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