Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Beyond Capitalism

It's simple really.

Your pension is a part of your wage or salary that is deferred until you retire. Political concerns over increasing life expectancy – described sometimes as a "burden" on society – are smoke screens designed to obscure this fact. In reality, lowering pension levels and raising the retirement age are pay cuts.

Pensions are money returned to us from the wealth that we ourselves have collectively created. Yet public sector workers are being told that they must pay more, work longer and get less, that there is a "problem", pensions must be curbed, a claim which demonstrates that the market economy cannot provide for the needs of the people who produce and distribute all of society's wealth.

Fight back is necessary - the gains made by wage and salary workers on pay, pensions and other related issues have not, after all, been granted by benevolent governments or employers – they had to be fought for. And the only way for working people to defend those gains is through democratic and unified action. If governments and employers win on pensions and wages they will try it again with something else.

As important and necessary as trade union actions are, they do not go to the heart of the matter. We strike because we are forced as workers to sell our lives by the week or by the month to our employers. No matter how many workplace battles we fight, we will always have to fight more. So, trade union action like this, even at their best, cannot bring us permanent security or end poverty. Trade unions are necessary but they can't work miracles. They cannot defeat the underlying logic of capitalism.

Austerity and insecurity in a world of potential plenty will always exist for members of the working class while capitalism continues. For a solution, we have to look beyond our immediate situation. Besides trade union action, political action is needed founded on a clear understanding and awareness of our class interests. Without that understanding, militancy can mean little.

It is down to us. Only we, the working class as a whole, can remove, through democratic political action, the system that constantly requires us to fight off attacks upon our livelihood.

We do not, like conventional political parties, ask for your blind support. Nor do we put ourselves forward as leaders. Instead, we ask you to consider the realities of our lives as workers and take action with us not to reform the capitalist system but to remove it entirely. Over the past century we have seen reform movements rise and fall; we have seen slogans fade; we have encountered scores of "solutions" acclaimed by governments and campaigning groups only to be discarded once they have been seen to fail. We have seen them fail, time and time again.

Reforming capitalism is not an answer

The single fact we urge working people to consider is that capitalism generates problems it is incapable of solving. And the remedy – the only remedy – is to consciously put an end to the property system that divides and oppresses us.

If you are interested in discussing the alternative, get in touch with us.

Rallies in Kingston, Maidstone, Hertford, Bristol, Cardiff, Swansea, Cambridge, Canterbury, Norwich, Manchester, Lancaster, Newcastle, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Belfast, Central London, Brixton, Birmingham, Dover, Brighton, Sheffield, Leeds, Bournemouth, Chelmsford, Luton, Gateshead and the Wirral will all be leafletted by party members today

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