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What's the alternative to New Labour?
THE RECENT oil protests graphically demonstrate the need for a new workers' party. The action of the protesters represented the most serious challenge to the Blair government since it came to power in 1997.
Their action became a catalyst for a general outpouring of discontent against New Labour. Millions supported the protest not only because of the high level of fuel tax but also because of all the other ways in which they feel let down by New Labour; such as the state of the NHS, the attacks on education, and the pathetic level of the pension.
Now, New Labour's support has plummeted in the polls. For the majority of working-class people this poses the question: "What's the alternative? Who else can we vote for?"
All of the existing major parties are parties of big business; they all put the interests of the billionaire fat cats before the interests of the rest of us.
In the coming months and years the need for a new party, that organises and represents the working class, will become increasingly clear to millions. Out of future mass struggles such a party will be forged.
The Socialist Party is campaigning for a new mass workers' party. At the same time we are doing our best to provide a socialist alternative to New Labour now. Our party is the only socialist party or socialist group in England to have successfully won seats in elections; we now have three councillors in Coventry (Dave Nellist, Karen Mackay and Rob Windsor) and one in Lewisham (Ian Page).
In the general election we will be standing in 18 seats across the country. However, we are anxious to maximise the impact that socialists make in the general election.
That is why we want to stand as part of a broad Socialist Alliance campaign, bringing together as many socialist organisations, groups of trade unionists and anti-cuts campaigners as possible.
In The Socialist 29 September 2000: