The public sector general strike marks an awakening of British workers after a long period of relative dormancy. Opinion polls show a majority of
public support for strike action - a recent BBC poll shows 61% support, rising to 67% among women and 80% among 16-24 year olds. This is just the beginning. This strike will serve to give enormous confidence to ordinary working people faced with Tory austerity.We are calling for all students and youth to actively support the strike - don't go into college, go to picket lines, discuss with striking workers and hand out this leaflet!
Click here for flyer as a PDF
The reason for the cuts is not ideological, as many trade union leaders like to imagine, but arises from the dire circumstances of capitalism in Britain and internationally.
A new slump looms on the horizon. These are not the words of the Marxists, but The Financial Times, The Economist and even Mario Draghi, the new president of the European Central Bank. The European Commission predicts that for the whole of Europe, including Britain, “a deep and prolonged recession complemented by continued market turmoil cannot be excluded.”
A downward revision of growth by the Bank of England means that a further £90bn in cuts must be found. And this does not even factor in a collapse of the Eurozone.
This means permanent austerity on a capitalist basis. Higher taxes on the rich, while progressive, will not solve the problem. Calls for “growth” under crisis-ridden capitalism are wishful thinking. Capitalism can no longer afford reforms - what it demands is austerity and counter-reforms.
Ed Milliband’s appeal for “responsible capitalism” is utopian. It has nothing to do with “responsible” or “irresponsible”. It is the laws of capitalism which dictate everything. Instead of using the crisis to argue for the socialist alternative, he says “we are just not going to be able to rely on the old model [of spending]”, saying that the spending of the Blair-Brown years on schools and hospitals will not be possible.
History has shown that trimming down your programme to what capitalism can afford will be disastrous. The recent shipwreck of socialist governments in Greece, Spain and Portugal is testimony to this fact.
The workers should not pay for the boss’s crisis -
Decent pensions are a right for all
No to cuts in wages, pensions and services -
Nationalise the banks
Down with the boss’s coalition -
Labour must defend the workers not the bankers and capitalists