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From The Socialist newspaper, 20 October 2021

"Are you the socialist cabby?"

Liverpool taxi. Photo: Kevin Walsh/CC

Liverpool taxi. Photo: Kevin Walsh/CC   (Click to enlarge)

A taxi driver and Liverpool Socialist Party member

The likelihood of politics coming up on a cab journey is nearly guaranteed. I mainly see workers, dozens of times a day.

They're affected by community issues, working conditions and the political climate. I have the chance to offer a socialist perspective that people may never have had access to.

I get to endorse anti-austerity election candidates and contest stereotypes. When I challenge a lazy vote for Labour, or raise an anti-cuts alternative, the curiosities appear.

Workers, who are overworked and underpaid, appear disillusioned with the political landscape, only visiting it every other May, if they vote at all. Election turnout is a paltry 20% in lots of places.

I have managed to get socialist views out there, and counter the right-wing populism which is infesting communities. I've helped workers see a different way - rejecting bigotry and prejudices, uniting the working class to rise up and make a difference.

I have been able to offer the Socialist newspaper and leaflets on local issues to passengers willing to know more. I am currently selling 20 copies of the Socialist every month. The hope is that we can raise the political awareness of the community.

During lockdown, I have been the link to the outside world for many older passengers. I would be the only person some had seen for weeks. People took a socialist paper as it was the only socialist analysis they could find.

The pandemic forced people to reflect on their lives and livelihoods. They were willing to talk politics in a way they'd never have dreamt. They have felt the effects of austerity, and now they are feeling the effects of a precarious future of Covid austerity.

During lockdown people would ask if I had any socialist papers. Passengers now recognise me and say: "You're that socialist cabby, aren't you?"

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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 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.
  • 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 20 October 2021:


News

Fight for a socialist recovery

Tories to blame for GP crisis

Container delay carnage makes the case for socialist planning

Socialist nationalisation not bailouts for the bosses


Workplace news

Unite union policy conference

University workers ballot for strike action

Unite and fight for 30,000 permanent DWP jobs

Gwent valleys Stagecoach bus drivers strike for fair pay

Reinstate Gary Evans! Llanelli postal workers strike

Napo AGM 2021: Union placed on war footing

Scunthorpe scaffs strike for pay


People's budgets

People's Budgets - a socialist answer to cruel cuts

Brighton bin workers' victory in sight

Fight to defend homelessness services

Ealing People's Budget - cuts can be resisted

Northampton People's Budget - cuts and privatisation is a failed strategy

Fighting the cuts at the ballot box in Liverpool


Fall of apartheid

The fall of Apartheid in South Africa


Climate change

COP26: Trade unions must fight for a socialist transition to renewables

Save the planet from capitalist climate catastrophe


International

Austria: Chancellor Kurz resigns amid allegations of corruption


Obituary

Obituary - Tony Davison: "I work for Militant, but Laing's pay my wages"


Campaigns

"Are you the socialist cabby?"

Housing crisis: Tories and Labour are not on our side

Liverpool arms fair: Hundreds of protesters defy police 'dispersal zone'

Hackney children's centres - more education cuts are devastating

Biggest protest yet to save Stratford Circus

Doncaster: Vigil condemns violence against women


Readers' opinion

I'm unemployed: For me vacancy crisis is a lie

TV review: Squid Game


 

Home   |   The Socialist 20 October 2021   |   Join the Socialist Party

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Related links:

The Socialist:

triangleSelling the Socialist

triangleObituary: Ted Austin (1940-2021) - working-class socialist stalwart

triangleSocialism 2021: A steely determination to change society

triangleHackney & Islington Socialist Party: The role of the Socialist paper

triangleWhy I joined the Socialist Party

Socialist:

triangleKickstart scheme 'insufficient and flawed'

triangleBulb bailed out, nationalise energy to solve price crisis

triangle27 dead in channel migrant tragedy

triangleArgentine elections see deepening polarisation

Austerity:

triangleSouthampton People's budget Building an alternative to Tory and Labour austerity

triangleThe fight for Hackney's children's centres continues

trianglePeople's Budgets - a socialist answer to cruel cuts

Workers:

triangleNHS workers - vote yes for action to win a decent pay rise

triangleNHS Critical

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

1/12/21

UCU

Higher education disputes

1/12/21

Scunthorpe

Welcome support for striking Scunthorpe scaffolders

1/12/21

Violence against women

Plymouth: Hundreds attend vigil for Bobbi-Anne McLeod

1/12/21

Education

Education unions lead campaign against Leicester academisation

1/12/21

RMT

RMT strikes against abolition of night tube train operators

1/12/21

Stagecoach

South Yorkshire Stagecoach drivers strike against measly 1% pay offer

1/12/21

Pay

Nottingham and Mansfield trade unions rally against cuts and for better pay

1/12/21

School

Oaks Park school strike ends following forced concessions

1/12/21

Cuts

Building a political alternative to Tory and Labour cuts

1/12/21

Socialist Students

Stop the cuts to Uni arts funding

1/12/21

Fighting Fund

Socialism 2021: How we reached our fighting fund appeal target

1/12/21

Poverty

End fuel poverty

1/12/21

Students

Staff and students unite against university bosses' attacks

1/12/21

Housing

Housing campaigners protest CEO champagners

30/11/21

Women

Marching to stop violence against women

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


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