October 20th saw the unveiling of the long-awaited Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR), the coalition government’s detailed blueprint on precisely how they plan to screw the working class. Little within the CSR was a source of surprise, with cuts roughly at the level that had been predicted in the run up. While the scale was predictably significantly below the 40% that had been mooted, this was clearly an attempt to ‘soften us up’ and feel lucky the cuts were “only” 20%, as if it had been taken straight out of the pages of ‘Negotiation for Dummies’.
Newsletter for a 2010 anti-cuts demo : fighting cuts, view of a 'benefits scrounger, restaurant tips
On Saturday (23rd October) members of Brighton Solidarity Federation joined the Radical Workers Bloc on a march to demand an end to the cuts being imposed on the working class in the ‘austerity budget’ – the greatest attack on the working class in decades.
We join the fight against the cuts now because they will bring immediate and real hardship and suffering to working people. But the answer does not really lie in a readjustment of the government’s budget.
The real answer lies in a fundamental change in the way we organise our society and economy. The fight over cuts is symptomatic of the fight between the wealthy, the capitalists, and the workers. It concerns how the wealth generated in society is distributed: but a slight shift one way or the other is not enough.
On 23rd October 2010 members of Northampton Solidarity Federation joined the anti cuts march to demand an end to the cuts being imposed on the working class in the 'austerity budget' - the greatest attack on the working class in decades.
We join the fight against the cuts now because they will bring immediate and real hardship and suffering to working people.
But the answer does not really lie in a readjustment of the government's budget.
The real answer lies in a fundamental change in the way we organise our society and economy.
The fight over cuts is symptomatic of the fight between the wealthy, the capitalists, and the workers.
It concerns how the wealth generated in society is distributed: but a slight shift one way or the other is not enough.
The text of the leaflet being distributed on the London anti-cuts march on Saturday 23rd October 2010.
The working class across Europe is facing the worst attacks on our standard of living, jobs and services for decades. We have been forced to pay for capitalism’s crisis since it began; redundancies, pay cuts, benefit cuts, increasing workloads for those who kept their jobs... the private and public sector alike.
As the scale of the cut-backs begins to sink in, there are signs of a growing
movement against the cuts, with hundreds attending public meetings across the country. Many, disenchanted with the anti-war marches and the lethargy of the unions, are arguing for more direct methods in this struggle.
On Saturday 23rd October 2010 a number of trade unions have called for a march in London to lobby the TUC to fight the cuts. This is the same day as the annual London Anarchist Bookfair and a day when a large number of anarchists are in the city. We are calling on all anarchists and militant workers to join us in forming a 'Radical Worker's Bloc' on the demonstration, not to beg the trade union bureaucrats to take action, but to argue that we fight the cuts based on the principles of solidarity, direct action, and control of our own struggles.
As the anti-war movement has shown, protest alone won't change anything. The government have already said that they will not be swayed by protests. Instead, we need a widespread fightback based in the workplace as well as the streets that acts in solidarity with fellow workers fighting these austerity measures all over the world.
It’s election season again. It’s a time of photo-ops and promises, manifestos and controversies. But behind the endless announcements, allegations and denials, is anything really at stake? After 13 years of Labour government, many people want a change. The economy on which Gordon Brown staked his reputation as Chancellor has nosedived on his watch as Prime Minister.
The academics’ union UCU at the University of Sussex cancelled industrial action planned for late June after university bosses declared they were “hopeful” they could avoid any compulsory redundancies.
It soon emerged however that compulsory redundancies had been transformed into ‘voluntary’ ones and the number of job losses remained at over 100, with a similarly severe impact on many courses and workloads expected.
One student mocked the management statement: “We are pleased to announce that the 100 have jumped, and were not pushed. The knives to their backs were unrelated.” A lecturer also commented that “I, among many, have been made ‘voluntarily’ redundant, after being selected for compulsory redundancy. The University seems to have got rid of everyone it wanted by forcing us to accept a ‘voluntary’ settlement.”
The government’s answer to the problem of unemployment during the biggest economic crisis since the 1930s is not to create any new jobs, but to launch a massive attack on our living standards.