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From The Socialist newspaper, 17 October 2007

Australia: Liberals v Labour - no choice for working people in election

The 2007 Australian federal (general) election is expected to take place on 24 November. The opposition Australian Labor Party, led by Kevin Rudd, will be the main challenger to the right-wing coalition government, in power since the 1996, led by prime minister John Howard's Liberals and their partners, the National Party.

Australian workers are desperate to get rid of the right wing John Howard government in the election. However, the Australian Labor Party (ALP) opposition offers no meaningful alternative and it fully supports the main neo-liberal policies of the coalition government.

The ALP's policies are not merely because of sell-outs by its leaders. The party has, especially since the 1980s, been an open party of big business. Its pitch to big business is that the ALP can sell cuts 'better' to workers, due to its historic connection to the trade union movement.

Notwithstanding the pro-big business character of the ALP, the defeat of Howard would boost the confidence of workers and young people. A victory for Howard would have the opposite effect, at least in the short term.

Workers will put pressure on an incoming Rudd ALP government to claw back what they lost under Howard. The unwillingness of Rudd to do so would lead to big conflicts between his government and the working class.

No matter who wins the election, the Socialist Party (CWI, Australia) will push harder for the creation of a new mass left-wing workers' party in Australia.

If progressive unions, active community groups, and the hundreds of thousands of left-wing voters were to unite behind such a party the level of struggle, political debate and understanding in Australia would be rapidly stepped up.

Socialist Party to contest Melbourne seat

The Socialist Party is standing Kylie McGregor for the seat of Melbourne in the upcoming election. This seat takes in the municipalities of both the right-wing run City of Melbourne, as well as the City of Yarra, which has the first ever Socialist Party councillor, Stephen Jolly.

Kylie is the president of Unite, the new militant union, established last year, to organise fast food and retail workers in Victoria.

As a co-founder and organiser of the Unite union, Kylie has been active in struggles to stop the exploitation of young workers. She campaigned to abolish low paying 'youth wages', and to increase the minimum wage for all workers.

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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.
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 special coronavirus appeal.

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In The Socialist 17 October 2007:

National Health Service Cutbacks and privatisation kill

National NHS demo

The vultures are circling ever closer

10,000 march in Sussex

Swansea fights the cuts

Rally for Socialism


Postal dispute

Exposing Royal Mail's lies

Postal workers waiting to assess Royal Mail deal

Fighting Royal Mail management's attacks

Solid unofficial action in East London

National Shop Stewards' Network meetings

Daylight robbery in Scotland!

Save Bolsover Post Offices


Socialist Party Marxist analysis

Brown's blues


International Appeal

Students on trumped-up charges


Socialist Students

Scrap fees for all students


National Shop Stewards Network

Young workers and students need to get involved

"You've got to stick together"

Stop the placement rip-off now!


Campaign for a New Workers Party

Tony Benn evades the issue


Trade Union Freedom Bill

Trade Union Freedom Bill: Banishing Thatcher's anti-union legacy?

Working longer hours for less pay


Socialist Party women

ITV2 - making a good deal out of women's bodies


International socialist news and analysis

Workers' struggle and political instability sends Polish government into meltdown

Australia: Liberals v Labour - no choice for working people in election


Socialist Party news and analysis

Children's homes at risk of buy-outs


 

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