Friday, 26 December 2014

SSP plea to socialists in the Labour Party


The Scottish Socialist Party in North Ayrshire is appealing to trade unions and their members to break from the “increasingly discredited and anti-working class Labour Party.”

Local SSP organiser Richie Venton (pictured) said that, following Labour’s election of right-winger Jim Murphy as the party’s new leader in Scotland, left-wing members should join the SSP and “help build a mass working-class socialist party”.

Mr Venton, also the SSP’s national workplace and trade union organiser, said, “The election of the boastfully-Blairite Jim Murphy as Scottish Labour leader is the latest in a series of landmarks in the degeneration of the party into another pro-capitalist, anti-working-class party.

“Labour was founded by trade unionists 120 years ago, but most Labour MPs and MSPs, and around 70-percent of individual party members, voted for Jim Murphy, which surely marks the death of any illusions about reclaiming Labour for the trade union movement or socialism.

"Murphy openly supported Tony Blair's retention of Thatcher's package of vicious anti-trade union laws, and of dragging working class kids to the killing fields of Iraq and Afghanistan in pursuit of oil and empire.

"He didn't even bother to turn up to vote for abolition of the Bedroom Tax, but made sure he voted for welfare caps on the poorest of the poor.

"He openly and gleefully campaigned against Scottish self-government alongside Tories, and subsequently had Tories helping him campaign to win the Labour leadership contest.

"Those who clung on to the hope of changing Labour from within, including trade union leaders, need to heed this rude awakening: the left candidates that most Scottish trade unions backed – including North Ayrshire’s Katy Clark - were made most unwelcome by the vast majority of Labour members in the leadership vote.

"Labour has long since ceased to be a home for socialists, but a haven for careerists who put the profiteering of big business before people.”

Mr Venton urged socialists in the Labour Party to “break from a party that has hammered the trade unions and working-class people during 13 years of recent Labour governments,” adding, “Come home to the SSP, the one party in Scotland that has consistently built solidarity with workers in struggle; fights for repeal of all anti-union laws; is campaigning for a £10 minimum wage for all at 16; and upholds the genuine socialist principles of pioneers like Keir Hardie, John Maclean and the Red Clydesiders.” 

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