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From The Socialist newspaper, 4 November 2020

The Socialist Inbox

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Readers of the Socialist react to Corbyn's suspension

My dad, 89 in a few days, has resigned from the Labour Party. He first joined in 1956.

He was once a Labour councillor, in the days when councils weren't making cuts. His parents were in Labour, and the family has labour movement roots going back to the London docks in the 1880s.

He left the party when Blair took us into the war in Iraq, but rejoined later in the hope Labour could be transformed into a pro-working-class, socialist party. Even an old man, who has spent most of his active life in the party, has decided the suspension of Jeremy Corbyn is the final evidence of that route now being cut off.

Steve Score, Leicester

Keir Starmer still can't attack Tory failures. The man would rather spend his time removing anyone from the party that supports the working class.

If you are a Labour member, you should consider leaving and joining the Socialist Party, if you want to build a new workers' party with socialist principles.The Socialist Party is a part of the Trade Union and Socialist Coalition (TUSC), standing anti-cuts candidates in the May 2021 elections.

Dave Moody, Shepton Mallet, Somerset

Will Jeremy Corbyn stay in Labour and continue to get shafted, or will he lead the split that's desperately needed from this openly anti-working class organisation?

It must be pleasing to the ruling class to see such an openly capitalist-supporting second Tory party, which Labour has become under Tony Blair and now Keir Starmer.

Paul Marshall, Rotherham

What now for the Labour Party? People joined Labour enthusiastically to support Jeremy Corbyn and his alternative to austerity and attacks of the Tories.

The Labour machine was always in the hands of the right. It was two parties in one.

The victory for the right is emphatic. It's time for a serious discussion among socialists and trade unionists for a new workers' party.

Matt Whale, Hull

Sky News says Keir Starmer's suspension of Jeremy Corbyn echoes Neil Kinnock's purge of Militant. Kinnock's action against Militant (now the Socialist Party) started a crusade to make Labour safe for the bosses, which Tony Blair accelerated.

Dave Nellist, former Labour MP, expelled for being a socialist

Jeremy Corbyn has been suspended for asserting his own innocence. This is confirmation that Labour has been recaptured by admirers of Margaret Thatcher - with the assistance of every branch of the establishment and the ruling class, from the press and media to parts of the civil service, like the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

Everyone who has ever read George Orwell should realise what we are being invited to do, denounce a lifelong anti-racist as a racist. It's time for a new party for everyone, that isn't in thrall to the billionaire class.

Dave Murray, Basildon

The rich and powerful needed to capture Labour, so they had a second eleven that they could turn to when needed. Under Blair, they got their prize.

Jeremy Corbyn's election upset their plans. This suspension is about making sure they don't let that happen again.

Trade unionists need to draw the conclusion that it's time once again to make our own challenge. Corbyn should make that call himself and launch an open, federal, workers' party.

That could draw together all those who have had enough of austerity and big business hypocrisy. If he did, and key unions backed him, it would transform the situation.

Martin Powell-Davies, Lancashire

Union conference private technology fails

We can now add the University and College Union (UCU) Congress platform to the list of private contracts which have failed to deliver during the pandemic.

The union's three-day national congress was cancelled with just two hours' notice. Senior union officers were not convinced the online platform was reliable enough to ensure democratic debate and accessibility.

Democracy in many unions has been attacked during the pandemic, with the bureaucratic apparatus stepping in. We must fight this.

This technology failing - paid for with a currently unknown amount of members' money - reveals why we cannot rely on private companies to deliver.

Billions is going to 'technological' solutions to the restrictions of the pandemics, but so far, what has it delivered? The pockets of big business bosses are being lined, despite failing to deliver what workers need.

Bea Gardner, UCU Congress delegate

Robert Fisk told the truth about Palestine and Iraq

Journalist Robert Fisk has died aged 74. A real loss to journalism that has integrity.

I met him once. He was to the point in person as well.

He was absolutely essential reading about the Middle East for many years. He told the truth about Palestine, Iraq and many other war zones.

He was a scourge of the establishment, because he wasn't bought or allowed himself to be compromised.

He cut his teeth in covering the conflict in Ireland and wrote good books on Irish history too. Sad loss.

Niall Mulholland, Newham, east London

Dripping in profit

  (Click to enlarge)

The government's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has sided with four major water providers who challenged an Ofwat ruling on how much profit they should make.

CMA believes the proposed 2.96% profit is too low and should be increased to 3.5%. This cry for increasing profit comes as the UK environmental agency for the UK announced that pollution from the water sector is the worst since 2014.

Water bills have risen 40% since privatisation. With this recommendation, it is likely to increase. These companies have racked up 51 billion in debt, but paid out 56 billion in dividends.

Clearly, these dividends would have been better spent on infrastructure improvements, supposedly responsible for the debt, than in the pocket of owners. This shows the need for socialism, where the needs of society outweigh the needs of private investors.

The water sector should be renationalised, with no compensation for the big shareholders. 56 billion seems like enough to me.

Once nationalised, the price structure should be revaluated to allow only for maintenance, repair, and expansion, of services, and increasing workers' pay. Something as essential as water should have never been out of the control of the people.

Liam Birch, Newcastle

Donate to the Socialist Party

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.
  • 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.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

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In The Socialist 4 November 2020:


What we think

Our lives, our jobs - not safe in Tory hands

Corbyn suspended - Time to fight for a new mass workers' party

Socialism 2020: Mass workers' voice needed


Unison

Why the Socialist Party is backing Hugo Pierre for Unison general secretary


News

A lockdown that doesn't include education?

Spycops inquiry finally opens

Testing is failing - it's a privatised mess

Furloughed worker speaks out: Let down by insecure contracts


Workplace

Transport for London given funding stop gap

Usdaw needs a fighting leadership

Birmingham NHS porters' 48-hour strike against shift changes

Optare strikers escalate their action


International news

Chile: A defeat for the right!

Poland: Mass protests against abortion ban

US presidential election 2020


Campaigns

Save St Andrews mental health ward

Leeds protesters demand "Buhari must go!"

Building Bangor Socialist Students

Maybe now they will listen - Refund the fees!

Donate now to the Socialism 2020 appeal

Corbyn suspended: Join the fightback, join the socialists


Readers' opinion

The Socialist Inbox


 

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Labour:

triangleCome to the TUSC local elections conference - 7 February

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Jeremy Corbyn:

trianglePeace and Justice Project - no way forward for socialism

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