Sunday, July 07, 2024

Enter Keir Starmer

Workers get little or nothing out of bourgeois elections. Whoever wins the ruling class will still be there living off the backs of working people in Britain and throughout the world.
The Labour Party has been dominated by its right-wing throughout its history – a right-wing that never seriously challenged imperialism when the British empire spanned the globe and to this day always seeks to serve what they believe to be the dominant wing of the ruling class.
But come election-time we do get the chance to keep the most reactionary of the mainstream parties out of office and to elect the only party that is historically and organisationally linked to the trade union movement – Labour. We also get the chance to raise popular demands that go far beyond the bourgeois agenda or the class-collaborationist policies of Sir Keir Starmer and his cronies.
This week Palestine solidarity candidates took four seats off of Labour and came close to winning a couple more. Jeremy Corbyn, the former Labour leader hounded out because he supports the legitimate demands of the Palestinian Arabs, has held his seat as an independent. These independents can now realistically strive to build a Palestinian support lobby in Parliament with the support from some of the Greens, the Liberal-Democrats and the left social-democrats on Starmer’s back-benches. But they won’t be able to change Labour itself.
Only the organised working class through its affiliated unions that provide the massive amounts of cash that keep Labour going can do that job. And that will only happen if there’s mass rank-and-file pressure on the leadership for change.
Capitalism can never solve the problems of working people nor is it intended to. It’s a system designed to ensure that the big bourgeoisie and those that serve them live the lives of Roman emperors through exploitation. All the wealth of the capitalist world is produced by workers in factories and peasants in the fields. All they get in return is a tiny fraction of the wealth they produce.
All that “democracy” means to the bourgeoisie is manipulating the largest number of votes by the smallest number of people. Marking a cross in a ballot box every four of five years is a meaningless ritual unless it’s matched by a rising level of militancy and struggle. The Palestine solidarity campaign has reached out to millions over the past nine months through mass actions on the streets in London and up and down the country. The unions must do the same to demand higher wages, better pensions, decent and affordable housing and a free health service that can so easily be funded by taxing the rich, restoring the public sector and scrapping the Trident nuclear arms system.
The next step is real democracy – people’s democracy; democracy for the masses that will pave the way for socialism and the end of poverty, classes and exploitation. The struggle began in the 19th century and continues to this day.
We know that social democracy, of whatever trend, can never lead to socialism. But the struggles of the future can only come from a labour movement confident to lead the fight for revolutionary change. We shall not be diverted from that struggle.

No comments: