Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/571/7066
From The Socialist newspaper, 19 March 2009
International Women's Day
Rosa Luxemburg - still relevant today
LONDON SOCIALIST Party's international women's day meeting discussed the huge effect this recession will have on women. The rate of redundancy is higher for women and more households now depend on a single wage. A quarter of all households are led by single parents, 90% of whom are women.
Woolworths closed recently, destroying up to 30,000 jobs from a largely female workforce. Yet there was no evidence of an organised fight-back led by shopworkers' Union USDAW.
By contrast, we watched Bread and Roses - an uplifting film directed by Ken Loach telling of the battle fought by cleaners, mainly female, in America in the 1990s. They won union recognition and secured employment rights.
The meeting's central discussion was on the role of Rosa Luxemburg, a Polish revolutionary living and fighting in the early 1900s.
Her Russian contemporary Leon Trotsky said "by the force of the strength of her theoretical thought and her ability to generalise Rosa Luxemburg was a whole head above not only her opponents but also her comrades. She was a woman of genius."
Rosa lived through the period of the Russian revolution, and was an activist in the German SPD, then the largest workers' party on earth. She died in 1919, betrayed by that party's movement to the right.
Rosa Luxemburg's book Reform or Revolution, written to explain and criticise the reformist swing of the SPD is relevant today in Britain as people search for reasons for the Labour Party's failure to deliver a fair and equal society.
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Coronavirus crisis - 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.
- Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
- 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 19 March 2009:
Fight tuition fees: fight for jobs: fight for a future!
Youth march for jobs
Stop the witch-hunt
International socialist news and analysis
Worldwide protests at killings of Tamils
Rosa Luxemburg - still relevant today
Ireland: Make the rich pay
Tibet: The 1959 uprising
Socialist Party campaigns
The miners were right!
End the 'benefits trap'
Liverpool University: Stop the cuts!
Tube strike ballot
Crisis in the legal aid system
Socialist Party congress
Socialist Party congress reports
Videos of Socialist Party Congress 2009
Perspectives for Britain and the world 2009
Socialist Party election campaign
The European elections and working-class representation
Lessons of the 2004 election
Campaign for a New Workers' Party
Socialist Party workplace news
Strike threat wins job back
Isle of Grain - Low-paying contractor exposed
£2.5 bn profit, but BT still announces pay freeze
Rhyl: One-day teachers' strike
Rooftop protest wins apology from Royal Mail
Airwave Solutions: Striking against job cuts
The Socialist 19 March 2009 |
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