Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1054/29525

From The Socialist newspaper, 4 September 2019

The Socialist Inbox

The Socialist inbox: letters to the editors

The Socialist inbox: letters to the editors   (Click to enlarge)

Do you have something to say?

Send your news, views and criticism in not more than 150 words to Socialist Postbox, PO Box 24697, London E11 1YD, phone 020 8988 8771 or email editors@socialistparty.org.uk.

We reserve the right to shorten and edit letters. Don't forget to give your name, address and phone number. Confidentiality will be respected if requested.

Views of letter writers do not necessarily match those of the Socialist Party.


Parliament prorogued

Democracy is optional for capitalism, photo by Maurice/CC

Democracy is optional for capitalism, photo by Maurice/CC   (Click to enlarge)

"No unity with austerity politicians" - it's a great slogan, and distinguishes us from all pro-austerity remainers.

Like the whole Liberal party. They are looking to have the same presence on the streets with their placards and orange colours as during the run-up to the Iraq war, when they cultivated an oppositional presence only to betray us later on.

Or the likes of openly vicious Tories, like Anna Soubry, who voted continuously for austerity and hates Corbyn. No unity with austerity politicians!

Nancy Taaffe, Walthamstow, east London

The queen allows an unelected prime minister to suspend a parliament with no single party enjoying a majority - which itself wants to ignore the "democratic" referendum vote - to defend a government propped up by the support of a party that scuppered devolved democratic government in its own country. Are we surprised that people don't have much faith in our democracy? I don't.

Sue Powell, Gloucester

Brexit continues to split the UK capitalists as never before - even the Financial Times is attacking Johnson and calling for a general election!

Roger Bannister, Liverpool

Johnson's move will gain some support from working-class people, seen as firm action and leadership required to deal with a crisis. In the meantime, Corbyn compromises and dithers faced with the Blairite hounds baying for his blood.

The result is that the Tories are about 10% ahead in the opinion polls, a frightening fact considering the rampant austerity under this Tory government. Labour should be miles ahead.

Time is short. We have the opportunity to see the back of the Tories very soon, and the election of an anti-austerity government, but also the extremely real danger of a decisive Tory victory.

Domenico Hill, Bristol

Boris de Pfeffel and Rees-Mogg 'on the side of working people'? Went to Eton at a cost of 42,500 a year - or 140% of a UK worker's average wage. Up the workers!

Wally Kennedy, Northwood, west London

Boris Johnson wants to play off 'people versus parliament'. The real difference is working-class people versus the rotten system that Johnson represents.

There is no different class interest between the Blairites, Tories and Lib Dems. Brexit is concealing the real issues such as poverty, homelessness, cuts to local services, privatisation of the NHS, and so on. Whether we stay in the EU or not all these issues will remain.

Labour can only win the upcoming general election if it campaigns against austerity, poverty and privatisation. With the populists like Trump, Farage and Johnson building political alliances, Labour must send out a clear message: no dirty deals in Westminster! Only a Corbyn-led Labour government with socialist policies can definitely defeat Boris and his right-wing populist agenda.

Terry Pearce, Bracknell, Berkshire

Corbyn's domestic agenda is his ace card, but he also needs a socialist response to the current right-wing Brexiteers versus pro-EU liberals cul-de-sac - namely a genuinely inclusive Brexit position, which must accept that in 2016 leave won the referendum.

Sadly, in recent days, Corbyn has chosen to meekly swim in the right-wing slipstream. When Jo Swinson and Anna Soubry emerge from a meeting with him beaming with satisfaction you know that a left-wing agenda hasn't been advanced.

It's not too late for him to advance a very clear left leave message, however. Anything else frankly risks totally abandoning the ground to Johnson, Farage and the right-wing Brexiteers, and Corbyn might never become PM.

James Hinchcliffe, Manchester

TAs and teachers together

In many public sector jobs, workforces have been reorganised to bring in workers on much lower rates of pay to do much of the job previously done by trained professionals on higher wages.

I currently work in the criminal justice system. We have experienced a downgrading of our role and our wages while still doing much of the work that was done on a higher grade.

My grade is totally undervalued. A family member works for the police and there has been a similar process there.

This suits the employers in two ways. First of all it is cheaper, and secondly it creates the potential to divide and rule.

An article appeared in issue 1051 written by a teaching assistant in Wales ('Huge workload, low pay and unpaid hours - a day in the life of a teaching assistant'). I am a retired teacher. On reading the article I can see that many of the problems faced by classroom assistants are also faced by teachers.

Teachers are also paid pro rata. They get an annual salary which is then divided into 12 monthly payments. I used to get fed up explaining to people that we didn't get paid for 'long holidays' - which were never that long given all the extra work that takes place during non-term time!

Teachers also do not get paid for extra hours worked. When I was a teacher we were paid for a statutory number of hours per year. But you could never do everything you were expected to do in that time.

I regularly went into school for 7am, worked through breaks, and left at 5pm to cook dinner and look after my children (I was also a single parent) - and then worked into the evening marking work, preparing lessons and writing reports. We also ran parents' evenings, rewrote curriculum, and organised extracurricular activities.

Like TAs, teachers are dedicated and will step in to support struggling families - to ensure their child can go on a trip, provide clothes, dinner money and so on.

A good teacher values the support from teaching assistants. I definitely did. Especially when I taught classes where 15 children were on the special needs register.

We stress the common cause of teachers and teaching assistants. The blame for being low-paid, overworked and undervalued lies with employers and the government.

We should fight for proper funding for schools, and unity in action to address issues common to teachers and teaching assistants - especially now the National Education Union organises both.

A Unison union member, Saddington, Leicestershire

Collective climate crisis

Greta Thunberg has helped inspire a generation of young people to fight climate change. The vicious attacks on her by capitalist politicians show their fear of youth anger.

However, some tactics risk alienating the very people that can stop the destruction of the planet: namely, the working class.

Greta's latest much-publicised venture - to travel across the Atlantic on a boat that has no carbon emissions - is very laudable. But it separates her from ordinary working-class youth who could never afford such transport. Apparently, the boat (powered by solar panels) cost 4 million just to build!

Air travel offers relatively affordable holidays to working-class families wanting to get away from the daily grind of capitalism. They shouldn't feel guilty about flying.

Individual stunts will not tackle climate change. What we need is collective action from the organised working class to shift production and mass transport to clean energy. Trade union action on the 20 September climate strike would be a good start.

Mick Whale, Hull

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 4 September 2019:


What we think

Tories out now - Corbyn in with socialist policies

Marches, blockades, strikes, occupations... How can protests win?


News

Money doesn't make up for cuts - education unions must organise for funding and against Tory attacks

Bury expelled from football league: Boot out the bosses ruining our game

Dozens of protests say Boris must go - Socialist Party policies heard on TV


Climate change

20 September climate action day: Strike to save the planet!

Climate action day - trade union round-up


Wales

Austerity anger feeds movement for Welsh independence


Retail

What strategy can end the retail jobs massacre?

Workplace victory emboldens retail workers to get organised


Workplace news

TUC: name the day for a mass demo

Nottingham college workers plan 15 days of walkouts

Science Museum Group staff strike over pay restraint

DVSA strike: action impacting

South Western Railway guards strike against DOO

London bus workers protest for better hours and conditions


International socialist news and analysis

Hong Kong protests: No let-up in trial of strength


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Socialist Party Youth and Student national meeting

Priced out of Pride

Bradford demo: Self-determination for Kashmir


Opinion

At 96 I'm more convinced of socialism than ever

The Socialist Inbox


 

Home   |   The Socialist 4 September 2019   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Letters:

triangleThe Socialist inbox

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

triangleThe Socialist inbox

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

triangleThe Socialist inbox

The Socialist:

triangleSocialism 2019: the Saturday rally, 2nd November 2019. Reports of the event will be posted soon.

triangleDonate to fund the fightback at Socialism 2019

triangleSelling the Socialist

triangleWhich way forward for the working people and youth of Nigeria?

Socialist:

triangleHackney Socialist Party: Fighting for Corbyn's manifesto and more!

triangleHackney Socialist Party: How would socialist nationalisation work?

triangleHackney Socialist Party: Rebellion around the world - is it coming to Britain?

Teachers:

triangleMoney doesn't make up for cuts - education unions must organise for funding and against Tory attacks

triangleIlford: parents and teachers unite against school cuts

Austerity:

triangleWolverhampton Socialist Party: How can we get the Tories out and end austerity?

Government:

trianglePCS: "Under the right leadership workers are prepared to fight"

Teaching assistants:

triangleHuge workload, low pay and unpaid hours - a day in the life of a teaching assistant

Reviews and comments

Reviews and comments

6/11/19

Minimum wage

Minimum wage debate: what should we be demanding?

6/11/19

TV

TV: Crime and Punishment - this brutal watch is a damning indictment of cuts and capitalism

30/10/19

Letters

The Socialist inbox

30/10/19

TV

TV: The Accident - Will capitalism be exposed in upsetting, true-to-life drama?

30/10/19

Film

Film reviews: Sorry We Missed You by Ken Loach

30/10/19

Economy

Life in the gig economy

30/10/19

Councillors

Opinion: Labour Party is structured to block left councillors

24/10/19

Liverpool

Tony Mulhearn - a Eulogy

23/10/19

Letters

The Socialist Inbox

16/10/19

Trotskyism

Major new book out in November: In Defence of Trotskyism

16/10/19

David Cameron

The Cameron Tory legacy

16/10/19

Tony Mulhearn

Book: The Making of a Liverpool Militant by Tony Mulhearn

9/10/19

Review

Film review: Joker - Sympathising with a monster created by today's incendiary conditions

9/10/19

Sexual harassment

Book review: She Said - Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story That Helped Ignite a Movement

2/10/19

Letters

The Socialist inbox

triangleMore Reviews and comments articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07954 376 096

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


November 2019

October 2019

September 2019

August 2019

July 2019

June 2019

May 2019

April 2019

March 2019

February 2019

January 2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999