Socialist Worker

Let's get David Cameron out - Vote yes in Scotland, join pay strikes and protests

Issue No. 2420

It wasn’t supposed to be like this. Less than year ago the unionist Better Together campaign in Scotland felt assured of victory. 

In March this year it was almost 25 points ahead. All that was left to do, according to Glasgow Labour MP Ian Davidson, was to “bayonet the wounded” and finish off the Yes campaign for good.

Yet this week the poll hangs in the balance. 

And it is a surge in support from working class voters that has got the ruling class in a panic.

The latest poll by researchers at TNS shows a 12-point increase for independence among poorer voters. 

And support for breaking up the union is growing among Labour voters too.

But the biggest shift comes from those who didn’t vote at the last Scottish elections in 2011.

Among them support for a yes vote has jumped from 35 percent to no less than 49 percent. 

There is all to play for in the referendum.

Class arguments are fuelling the surge. Worried Better Together politicians look increasing like a dodgy sales team offering anything they can to close the deal.

The Tories are pretty much helpless to do anything as Labour Party leaders and MPs set out on a desperate mission to stem the tide. 

Working class voters will be decisive to the outcome and can shift the campaign further to the left. 

However there are some on the left despairing that a Yes vote would condemn England and Wales to perpetual Tory rule.

This is because losing 41 MPs in Scotland is said to be fatal to Labour ever winning again. 

Pessimistic

But it is an entirely pessimistic view to say the only hope of ending Tory austerity for the working class is getting Labour elected. 

It says that working class struggle is powerless to change anything.

If trade union leaders had led a real fight and put their members’ interests before the Labour Party the Tories could have been long gone by now.

And it’s not true that Labour can’t win without votes in Scotland. 

Only two Labour governments in the last 60 years have relied on Scottish seats for their majority.

The biggest barrier to Labour offering a serious challenge to the Tories is its pro-business, anti-immigrant and anti-working class policies. 

Sticking to Tory spending plans will not convince working class voters furious at the attacks on their jobs, services and living standards.

Whatever the outcome of the referendum workers across Britain cannot rely on Labour politicians, or the SNP for that matter, to fight for their interests. 

Only working class struggle and a political alternative to capitalism can shape a society that benefits ordinary people.


If you enjoy Socialist Worker, please consider giving to our annual appeal to make sure we can maintain and develop our online and print versions of Socialist Worker. Go here for details and to donate.

Article information

What We Think
Tue 9 Sep 2014, 16:47 BST
Issue No. 2420
Share this article


Tags



Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.