Campaigning in Leeds Photo: LeedsSP
Campaigning in Leeds including Paul (right) Photo: LeedsSP

Paul Thomas, Leeds Socialist Party

There is an abundance of wealth in the world. The likes of Musk, Bezos, Gates and others get richer, yet across the planet people are starving and living in slums. What has become even more obvious, is that this is not just in the developing nations, but in the world’s richest countries too, including Britain.

I got to thinking, why? Why, in a world of such plenty with mountains of food thrown away every day, do we still have so many starving?  In the UK, hundreds of thousands of people use food banks. The answer I saw as simple: corruption.

Meritocracy lie

The idea of a meritocracy is utterly false. At first, I saw politicians as the only ones to blame for corruption. But, while clearly easily corrupted, they are not the only source. At root, the source of that corruption: those with money. The capitalists, bending and changing rules to suit themselves.

I started to look for the alternative. But the well-known political options, Tories, Labour and the rest, basically have the same set of policies: ‘Keep the financial system working and businesses profitable, this will make everything else work’. It clearly doesn’t.

I want a system that puts people first, not just an elite few. Socialism does exactly that, by bringing the vast wealth and resources hoarded by the rich into democratic public ownership, so that society can be run with a truly democratic ethos, not for profit but to provide what is needed for all.

I started to search the internet for a group that aligned with the socialist spirit growing within me. I left my contact information on the Socialist Party website, and was swiftly contacted by Yorkshire organiser Iain Dalton.

I was invited along to a few meetings to meet and chat with members from across West Yorkshire branches. Now I have joined the Leeds branch. I have settled in to the weekly meetings and actively join in discussions. While a little unsure at first, with the support of more experienced members, I have started helping on the city centre campaign stalls, and attending picket lines to extend solidarity to workers in struggle.

I’m proud to be part of the Socialist Party, engaging in the class fight now under way, on the side of the working class. You should join us too.