Socialist Party books and pamphlets

The Case for Socialism (2009)

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Capitalism expects workers to rely on private pensions; a living state pension is considered out of the question.

Yet capitalism has failed to provide. The fall in the value of the stock markets is decimating the personal pensions of millions. Public sector workers now also face attacks on their pension rights as they are asked to pay the price for their employers' investment choices.

Other workers believed, as they were encouraged to, that the value of their house would act as a cushion in their old age.

They are now finding out that this may not be the case. The capitalists increasingly expect us to 'work 'til we drop'. A socialist pension policy would allow workers to start drawing a decent state pension at 55. Those who want to continue work could do so. Part-time work with part-pension could bridge the gap between work and retirement for those who want it.

Pensioners should receive an immediate 50% increase, and this should be extended to all state benefits.

The link between pensions and earnings should be restored. These measures would cost around 15 billion a year. In addition, pensioners, having contributed to society all their lives, should be entitled to free housing, heating, telephone and travel.

This could be easily paid for by using some of the 35 billion a year New Labour is currently spending on so-called defence.

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