Socialist Worker


Issue No. 2454

Don't trust the SNP

I am a full time carer to my two young sons who both have Asperger’s syndrome (or high functioning autism). I am actively fighting for improved support and services for children in Scotland who have autism.

As a socialist, I believe that the recent success of the Scottish National Party (SNP) will weaken the working class. 

The SNP has convinced Scotland that it is a left wing, progressive party. 

This has led many people to abandon the belief that we need to build a strong left that can fight the oncoming attacks from a strengthened Tory government. 

The Scottish Labour Party must be ready to join with other left groups and unions in order to fight the attacks of the Tories. 

This means returning to their socialist values and beliefs, and backing this up with real action.

I call on all parents and carers to come to our autism events, and tell Scottish Labour, “We will support you—if you support us.”

Chris HeggieEdinburgh

Labour has no-one to blame but itself

With a bare 37 percent of the vote, the Tories did not win this election—Labour lost it.

The other 63 percent of voters were crying out for an alternative to austerity and cuts. 

That’s why the Liberal Democrats were smashed. 

In Scotland where the Scottish nationalists gave a voice to the 63 percent they did indeed roar. 

In England the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition was the best on offer, but wasn’t up to the job.

Now it looks as though Labour is going to draw exactly the opposite conclusion and return to Blairism.

If it does the working class in England is likely to tell it how irrelevant it is, just like the working class in Scotland did.

We badly need a radical left party such as Podemos, or Syriza. With all their faults they’re better than what we’ve got.

John ShemeldNottingham

Why were the unions forgotten?

For the past five years Labour made no attempt to fight back against the Tory lies and propaganda.

Where was the clear position of the Labour Party regarding the NHS—reversing privatisation and imposing a health tax?

Why was trade unionism and trade unions, who have millions of members and who created the Labour Party, missing from the debate?

There was no mention of renationalisation of the railways, which enjoys the support of over 70 percent of the population. 

There was no condemnation of the Tory proposals to sell off more social housing at knock down prices.

A campaign which included none of the above was always doomed to failure.

Ross SuttonReading

We must resist the Tories

lI felt like I’d been punched in the face when the Tories won the election. But I’m not convinced they will succeed in 2020. 

I don’t think they’ll be able to get away with their mantra on how they rescued the economy during this entire term of office. 

Dogmatism will be exposed by uncooperative economic data. 

But I do feel desperately unhappy about the brutality and injustice many people will have to endure until then. 

And I do worry that hardship can just as surely demoralise and divide as much as it can fan the flames of resistance and unity. 

It’s going to require hard work to avoid the former. But of course I know we will be up for that.

Gail EdwardsNewcastle

We beat the BNP

Anti-fascists in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, are celebrating the death of the Nazi British National Party (BNP).

The coffin was the ballot box in which BNP chairman Adam Walker mustered just 225 votes. The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition polled more than the BNP and the English Democrats combined.

It is a victory for years of campaigning by Unite Against Fascism against the BNP and other fascists and racists trying to exploit the child abuse scandal. 

But the big Ukip vote means we urgently need to step up Stand Up to Ukip activities.

Phil TurnerRotherham

Press regulation won’t help

Given the vile nature of what The Sun newspaper columnist Katie Hopkins has said about migrants, it’s no wonder that people call for state regulation of the media (Letters, 16 May).

As a journalist and NUJ union member I worry it would mean more curbs on the ability of journalists to hold the rich and powerful to account.

Legal regulation could be used to gag troublemakers.

In the end we need stronger media unions to challenge the bosses.

Julia ArmstrongSheffield

Killed by the state?

On the “disappearances” in Balochistan (Socialist Worker, 16 May).

In 2010 I represented, in Britain, a Baloch leader charged at the behest of the Pakistan government with trumped up terrorism charges. He was acquitted. 

During the case I travelled to Karachi and interviewed, with an independent interpreter, tortured Balochistanis. 

By the end of the trial two of them had been taken from their lawyer’s office and killed. A few weeks later I received an email from the father of my interpreter, “they have killed my son”.

Jim Nichol, solicitor, South Africa

Racists’ days are numbered

I’m Glad Nigel Farage didn’t win his seat in South Thanet. 

Just remember how popular the Nazi British National Party was not so long ago and where is it in this election. 

Bye bye right wing bigots. Your days are numbered in our wonderful multicultural society.

Catherine SutherlandEdinburgh

Why buy the Murdoch rag?

Enjoyed the article on Murdoch, the media and elections (Socialist Worker, 16 May).

I never understand when I see working class people buying the Sun—a newspaper that wants them crushed down.

Rowan WyattTunbridge Wells

Where’s the next demo?

I am forever reading Socialist Worker and finding that a demo I’d have loved to have been part of has just happened.

Now more than ever I want to show my face and increase the numbers at these events. 

Does anyone know of a website where they’re published in advance? Could Socialist Worker print a list each week?

Gareth HopcynStockport

Bloodthirsty Gove is back

Michael Gove as justice secretary? 

Never has the cliche about putting Dracula in charge of the blood bank been more apt.

John CurtisIpswich

Back to school for Murphy

Now that ex Scottish Labour MP Jim Murphy has received his P45, perhaps he should return to Strathclyde University to finish his studies.

It’d be interesting to see how he got on with students who have lost the free education and maintenance grants that he enjoyed. While president of the National Union of Students he promoted student loans.

John HeinEdinburgh

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Article information

Tue 19 May 2015, 16:20 BST
Issue No. 2454
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