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From The Socialist newspaper, 10 March 2021

Why I joined the Socialist Party - to fight for the future of the working class

GMB union members in Asda have rejected attacks on pay and conditions, photo Sheffield Socialist Party, photo Sheffield Socialist Party

GMB union members in Asda have rejected attacks on pay and conditions, photo Sheffield Socialist Party, photo Sheffield Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

David Murray, Mansfield Socialist Party

As an Asda worker I have seen first-hand the capitalist drive to pursue profits before the wellbeing of people, reflected in more work piled upon shop-floor colleagues. Skeleton staffing has seen colleagues leave in droves and never replaced. Benefits and rights have been pared back as colleagues are forced onto swingeing new 'flexible' work contracts. And since the beginning of the Covid crisis, colleagues have been forced to work with minimal protection in teeming stores as Asda's bosses have pocketed super-profits.

When Jeremy Corbyn was elected leader of the Labour party in 2015, I joined hoping to help deliver the new mass party that seemed to have come into existence as an embryo within the shell of the old Labour Party. What followed in the next five years was a stark lesson in the impossibility of transforming Labour - with its machine firmly in the hands of the Blairites - into a party willing to stand with the working class against the bosses.

After Labour went down to a crushing defeat in the 2019 general election, I couldn't help but look for an alternative. When Corbyn came to Mansfield after the 2017 election I attended his rally. On the way out I encountered local Socialist Party members who had set up a stall, and fell into a conversation with them. It was apparent that we shared a lot more in common politically than I did with most of the people in the Labour Party.

Over the next couple of years I would often see the Socialist Party campaign stall in Mansfield town centre. Outside of the big cities and university towns, most socialist groups seem to be limited to a quiet Facebook page. These socialists seemed different. Not afraid to talk to the public and make their argument, even when it meant standing in a freezing and windy town centre in February. We aim to be part of the "fabric of a working-class community", a Socialist Party member explained to me.

The decision to join the Socialist Party was easy. The consistent belief in the need to build a mass party of the working class, to organise in the trade unions, and to root ourselves in working-class communities has given me hope.

And so, to those who are tired of watching the 'official' left backpedal in the face of spurious attacks from the right, and to those who understand that the task at hand is for the working class to build power for ourselves, and in our own interests. I would say join the Socialist Party to fight bosses and to fight for the future of the working class.

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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 10 March 2021:


NHS pay

NHS pay - 15% now

NHS workers say: We are ready to fight Tory pay insult

Police disgracefully stop NHS pay protest


News

Super-deduction will help big business pay less tax

The 'old normal' meant poverty for young people


What we think

Tories keep bailing out bosses, while piling pain on workers and public services


Schools

Workers respond to 'back to school'


Workplace news

British Gas strikers reject deal and carry on fighting

Goodlord striker speaks out: 'workers have to fight for our skills to be appreciated'

Stop union busting on the buses: Reinstate Declan Clune and Moe Muhsin Manir

Sparks deskilling protests

Leicester university workers ballot for action against redundancies

Sainsbury's pay offer shows future will only be 'great pay' if we fight

PCS leadership failures lead to concession bargaining on pay

Manchester bus drivers' indefinite strikers fight on

London bus drivers continue walkout


Rosa Luxemburg

150th anniversary of Rosa Luxemburg's birth


Wealth Tax

Would a wealth tax end poverty and inequality?


Campaigns news

Socialist women speak at inspirational International Women's Day online rally

Why I joined the Socialist Party - to fight for the future of the working class

Why I'm standing for TUSC

Build subscriptions to the Socialist

Fighting fund target achieved - keep up the momentum


International news

Historic union battle at Alabama warehouse

10 years ago - the Fukushima nuclear disaster: "We came close to losing northern Japan"


Letters

The Socialist Inbox


 

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