The Socialist

The Socialist 22 October 2014

Priced out? Strike Back!

The Socialist issue 830

Priced out? Strike back!

100,000 march against cuts and for a wage rise

The unions' pay battle must continue


50 years of socialist ideas and workers' struggle

Where's our recovery?

Socialist change to halt climate change

A Freudian slip?

Undercover cops report - a whitewash

Them & Us


Ebola outbreak: one face of austerity

International day of action for abortion rights in Ireland


PCS members again show anti-austerity determination

"No Raise - No Rays!" - say radiographers

POA hospital workers join public sector strike wave

St Mungo's Broadway strikers stage 19 pickets

Care UK strikers lobby Miliband for public support

Sheffield green workers' unofficial walkout

WEA tutors' victory


Leicester council hits homeless hostel

Reckless Ukip circus

Anti-eviction success!

Save Bitterne walk-in centre!

Socialist Party "part of political landscape"


Local services suffer under Welsh Labour

Hedge fund owners will never blush

Private companies hold NHS to ransom

 
 
 
 
 

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Reckless Ukip circus

Sue Berry, Socialist Party North Kent

The circus is in town! The decision of Rochester and Strood's Tory MP Mark Reckless to defect to Ukip and fight a by-election on 20 November has brought all the clowns of Westminster to our door followed by their media chums looking for any new angle. On top of the usual staged photo-opportunities with 'Mark and Nigel' at the local pub, we've had to put up with that well-known comedy duo Ian Duncan-Smith and Michael Gove knocking on our doors!

Fed up!

After only one week of full campaigning, people are well and truly fed up. The vast majority see this 'no choice' election as an unwelcome intrusion by a bunch of selfish careerists who have nothing in common with ordinary people struggling to make ends meet.

Faced with this unexpected turn of events, local supporters of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC - see page 5) had a difficult decision to make in how to respond. In September, the North Kent TUSC steering committee decided to fight as many council seats as possible and to consider standing at least one parliamentary candidate in May 2015.

Following the announcement of the by-election, we held two open meetings attended by local members of the Socialist Party, RMT transport union, PCS civil servants union, POA prison officer's union, Socialist Workers Party, Independent Socialist Network and individual members of Left Unity.

TUSC national election agent Clive Heemskerk addressed the second of these meetings.

At the end of these discussions it was felt by a majority that our resources will be better spent on gathering support for the May elections next year rather than trying to compete with the media circus that is already swamping the by-election. Both the Tories and Ukip are likely to hit the £100,000 by-election campaign spending limit.

While this is a disappointment for some, we have the longer term objective of building the framework of an organisation nationally that will be able to field over 100 parliamentary and 1,000 council candidates next year and we feel that the by-election could distract from rather than help this process.

North Kent TUSC supporters have pledged to work together during the campaign to tap in to the anti-Westminster mood.

This is a great opportunity not only to quiz the big-business candidates about where they stand on trade union rights, restoring public services and benefits, the living wage and public ownership, but more importantly to find working class fighters willing stand as candidates for real change next year, after the circus has left town.


In this issue


Britain needs a pay rise

Priced out? Strike back!

100,000 march against cuts and for a wage rise

The unions' pay battle must continue


Socialist Party news and analysis

50 years of socialist ideas and workers' struggle

Where's our recovery?

Socialist change to halt climate change

A Freudian slip?

Undercover cops report - a whitewash

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

Ebola outbreak: one face of austerity

International day of action for abortion rights in Ireland


Socialist Party workplace news

PCS members again show anti-austerity determination

"No Raise - No Rays!" - say radiographers

POA hospital workers join public sector strike wave

St Mungo's Broadway strikers stage 19 pickets

Care UK strikers lobby Miliband for public support

Sheffield green workers' unofficial walkout

WEA tutors' victory


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Leicester council hits homeless hostel

Reckless Ukip circus

Anti-eviction success!

Save Bitterne walk-in centre!

Socialist Party "part of political landscape"


Readers' comments

Local services suffer under Welsh Labour

Hedge fund owners will never blush

Private companies hold NHS to ransom


 

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