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From The Socialist newspaper, 11 February 2009

Wirral cuts: We need a new party

On 9 February around 150 people rallied at Wallasey town hall against the wholesale destruction of local services by Wirral council. Lively contingents with banners, flags and placards represented many local facilities under threat from the council, which was meeting inside to ratify the cuts programme.

Hugh Caffrey

52,000 people have signed petitions against the closures. Despite this, the Liberal-Labour council voted to make all the threatened closures. Wirral residents are supposed to pay the price for economic crisis, central government spending cuts, and mismanagement by those running the council who invested, and lost, millions of pounds in the now-collapsed Icelandic banks.

Before occupying the town hall viewing area to follow what passes for 'debate', the rally heard a number of speakers including Dave Lunn, a committee member of Wirral Against The Cuts coalition and member of the Socialist Party. Dave demanded: "Instead of making these cuts, the council should be going back to central government and demanding the money we need for our services!"

A determined united campaign of mass direct action could still force a U-turn from the councillors. Already, as raised by the Socialist Party and others, anti-cuts candidates are planning to stand in the 2010 council elections.

The Tories attempting to latch onto the anti-cuts groundswell makes an electoral challenge even more important. As Dave said to The Socialist: "The Tories are saying that the people of Wirral will not forget this betrayal by the Lib/Lab council, but equally the people of Wirral will not forget the role of previous Tory governments and councils in destroying our services and jobs. What the people of Wirral want is a genuine working-class alternative to vote for, that is capable of delivering services in favour of working-class communities."

In a nutshell, as one reader of The Socialist declared to the rally: "What we need is a new workers' party!"

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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 11 February 2009:

Bankers' bonuses - daylight robbery!

Vendetta continues against socialist fighter

JCB owner - still shovelling in the cash


Construction workers

Lindsey oil refinery strike: Workers score important victory

Construction workers' battle to defend jobs and conditions

Welcome to the JIB!

Motherwell Bridge bosses declare war on striking workers

Stop GSK job cuts


Socialist Party youth and students

Defend youth services

College students - keen to fight back

Save Charlotte Turner school!


Socialist Party campaigns

Tyneside Metro: Workers' action to stop privatisation

Carbon trading crisis creates bonanza for polluting firms

Exeter: Mobilising to stop the far right

Fast news


Car workers

Fight for jobs at Ford

Car industry in crisis - national meeting


Socialist Party workplace news

Wirral cuts: We need a new party

Victory for Salford Unison

Defend jobs at Salford University

Usdaw presidential election

Protest against the Unison witch-hunt

Greenwich council: An injury to one is an injury to all


International socialist news and analysis

Nationalise Waterford Crystal!

United Socialist Party members remanded on trumped-up charges


Socialist Party review

Slumdog Millionaire


Football

Reclaim the game


 

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