Saturday, March 26, 2011


Today the a new generation of trade unionists rediscovered the fundamental truth:

It would be a pity if this power were sidetracked into re-electing the Labour traitors. The working class is powerful. Its leadership is frequently weak. Marx referred to them as lions....led by donkeys. What do you think?

Libraries, education, welfare...the list goes on.
Everything is being cut except bankers' bonuses
and MP's expenses.

The cuts are entirely unnecessary. Billions are squandered in expensive military adventures. Billions are handed over to bankers in bonuses. Billions are cut from corporation tax and billions are siphoned off in tax evasion. A government of millionaires can be sympathetic to the plight of the fat cats.

As for the Political Elite – even the ones who don't have moats might as well have, they are so remote from the concerns of ordinary people. Cameron, Clegg, Miliband and their ilk have a privileged and protected lifestyle.

The capitalist class has failed. It is only the corrupt political elite that keeps them going with billions of pounds of public money.

Back in the day, the trade unions in the UK created a political party – the Labour Party. It was a party of peace, equality and public ownership. Hijacked by careerists it has become a party of:

War – not one bloody colonial war but two...and they have voted overwhelmingly for gunboat diplomacy in Libya.

Inequality – with leading Labour figures like Lord Hutton working for Cameron. Hutton is in the front line of cutting public sector pensions.

And privatisation. Usually in the guise of public private partnerships – which put public money into private pockets.

The Socialist Party does not believe trade unionists will be content to sit and wait for a Labour government. A Labour government will doubtless have good reasons to continue the cuts, just as Blair and Brown continued Margaret Thatcher's legacy of attacking the trade unions.

We believe that the unions can create a political alternative.

A new workers' party. The various socialist societies have worked together in - for example - the socialist alliance. It is only the big guns of the trade union movement - in short the people who showed their power today - who can transform the political landscape. This is desirable for socialists. It is a dire necessity for working people.

Details of the meetings of the small but perfectly formed Mid-Sussex Socialist Party are available on

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Lord Hutton's "nice Labour cuts"

If anyone pretends to believe the Labour Party would cut less than the Tories, they have only to look at the Labour Peer (and lickspittle to Cameron) Lord Hutton.

Martin Powell-Davies (NUT Executive member) writes:

Lord Hutton's second report into public sector pensions has confirmed the attacks that we have been expecting.
He has recommended:
a) An end to final salary pension schemes - to be replaced by 'career average' schemes in order to cut the value of pensions.

b) Retiring older - the 'normal pension age' would rise first to 65 for all but increase further to 68 in future to track the rising state pension age.
This comes on top of the attacks we already know about, particularly:
c) Paying more - with the government wanting to increase pension contributions by 50%. This will rob £100 a month or so from teachers just as we are about to be clobbered by a pay freeze and rising inflation.
Lord Hutton's interview on Radio 4 this morning contained a series of distortions designed to confuse and divide opposition - we must not be fooled.
First, he claims that 'there is no alternative', that we're all living longer and so we have to work longer to pay for it. The financial statistics don't back this up.
As the NUT press release has stated: "The National Audit Office has confirmed that public sector pension costs are falling as expected due to the reforms already in place.
"Teachers are already paying more, the normal pension age has been raised to 65 for new entrants and employer contributions have been capped ... Their plans are based on politics, not economics.
"Pensions have already been cut by changing their link from RPI to CPI inflation. As a result of this, next month's pension increase will be 1.5% less than it should have been".
Second, Hutton claims that public-sector workers can't expect to carry on with final-salary pensions when most private-sector workers aren't getting them.
But why should we allow ourselves to be ripped off in the same way that many private companies are ripping off their employees? The best way to defend all workers - in both the public and private sectors - is for someone to put up a fight, and we are going to!
Lastly, as well as trying to divide public sector workers from private sector colleagues, Hutton wants to divide classroom teachers from promoted colleagues by claiming that 'career-average' schemes will be 'fairer' to those lower down the scale. But what he intends will be unfair to all of us.
He hasn't made any recommendations on the technical details of the 'accrual rates' in any career-average scheme - and thereby hides the truth. In principle, a career-average scheme can be constructed in a way that maintains pension levels - but Hutton's aim is to cut pensions.
These schemes will be constructed to give us less pension even though we'll be paying in more. There's nothing 'fair' about Hutton's proposals - they are just another part of this government's agenda of cuts and privatisation.
Hutton did have to admit that there would have to be consultation and changes to legislation to bring in these changes. That means we have a window - although it might be a short one - to organise the united action needed to stop these attacks.
Hutton's report must be met with a quick response - coordinated ballots across the public sector for strike action to defeat this pensions robbery.