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From The Socialist newspaper, 21 January 2015

Why I joined the Socialist Party

"To get rid of capitalism we need parties like the Socialist Party", photo by Senan   (Click to enlarge)

Laurel Fogarty, Lambeth and South West London Socialist Party

I moved to London from San Francisco in October 2014. I had been a member of an unrelated socialist group in the US. My comrades there put me in touch with a few young activists in London, but for one reason or another no meetings materialised.

With London bubbling over with anger at Tory cuts and Lib Dem betrayals, getting on the streets seemed more important than chasing up emails. So I ditched an afternoon at my new job, and went to join the huge student protest in November.

At that demonstration, both Socialist Students and the Socialist Party had a strong presence, manning stands, selling papers and handing out signs. So I decided to come to a Socialist Party branch meeting.

Socialist meetings I attended in the past (mostly on privileged university campuses) have often left me in awe of activists' commitment to learning. But this meeting left me with something more than that. It left me with the feeling that this is what a socialist party should be.

After a talk on economic theory, members began discussing the strikes they were supporting and the work their unions were doing. Jokingly wishing that people would stop going on strike at 4am in the middle of winter - but fully intending to get up, put on a woolly hat, and support them anyway.

I joined because if we are going to get rid of capitalism, we need parties like the Socialist Party. On the streets protesting, supporting workers when they need it, patiently showing us the change we need is within our grasp - and explaining how we can reach out and grab it.

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 21 January 2015:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Take the wealth off the super-rich!

Labour Party won't protect our NHS

Youth unemployment: anxiety and anger

Oil price crashes as world economy slows

Care home scandal: When profit comes first...

Them & Us


International socialist news

Greece: Syriza victory would raise workers' hopes


Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

Opposing establishment parties is not 'wasted vote'

Don't just boo - help fund the fightback!


Socialist Party workplace news

Striking NHS workers say: 'Give us pay we can live on'

Safeguarding PCS against vicious Tory attacks

Unison activists discuss reclaiming the union

UCU: Clear strategy needed to reignite pensions action

Barbour workers accept improved offer

Essex FBU fight lockout


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Cardiff happy to get the blues

Hackney women give TUSC their blessing

5,000 residents force council debate on pool closure


Readers' comments

Tesco: every little cut helps

Halt the cutbacks in hearing aid provision

Privatisation worsens NHS crisis

TTIP it into the Atlantic

Why I joined the Socialist Party


 

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