Socialist Worker

Letters: It’s right to reject the bosses’ EU

Issue No. 2493

The EU flag represents the rich - and barriers to refugees (Pic: Oona Räisänen)

The EU flag represents the rich - and barriers to refugees (Pic: Oona Räisänen)

I’m delighted that Socialist Worker has come out boldly in favour of a “Leave” vote in the forthcoming referendum on European Union (EU) membership.

We need a visible and vocal “left out of EU” campaign.

Cowardly trade union leaders back EU legislation as “the only game in town” in defending and even extending workers’ rights.

Not long ago lower levels in the union machines used it as an excuse not to organise a fightback.

I remember being on education courses in my union where this strategy was taught as the only “realistic” action—apart from voting for Labour.

Arguing about reform or revolution was really useful in trying to counter this drift. If anything, it might be even more useful now.

The EU serves the bosses’ interests and only their interests. If ours coincide with them it’s never for long. If their interests change and ours don’t, their attitude is hard luck at best.

Colin Yates, East London

Brexit can stuff the Tories

We can shape the EU referendum with an Exit Left strategy.

With no EU there can be no TTIP treaty of mass privatisation—and that would stuff the Tories up.

With no EU, Scotland may win an independence referendum—and what happens to Trident?

Other forces on the left believe in reforming the EU. This is dangerously the wrong attitude. It has always been a bosses’ club and this cannot be undone.

Richard Stephens, Bristol

Greece is a real worry

I would have been on the Remain side if it wasn’t for the euro and the referendum in Greece.

It’s made me ask, what if Britain joined the euro and the EU ignored our vote to reject a bailout?

Already 19 EU members are in the euro, and naturally an enlargement is down the line. At some point we need to jump in or leave. Remaining is the larger risk.

Cee-Jay Thomason Facebook

The EU is better than nothing

If the vote is to leave the EU, the Tory right and Ukip will be strengthened. It will be interpreted as a mass vote against migrants.

The EU isn’t perfect—it’s made up of neoliberal governments. But it has the potential to promote internationalism and cooperation on things like climate change.

I agree Greece was stuffed but that’s an argument against the eurozone not against the EU.

John Beneston Facebook

Would the right gain?

Is there not a danger that a vote to Leave will benefit Ukip and the EDL more than it will the left?

@Nick_O_Larseon Twitter

Bring down ‘Fortress Europe’

Governments and businesses that support the EU are happy for “Fortress Europe” to bar people coming from Africa and Asia.

They show no international solidarity when it comes to turning refugees back.

EU countries reluctantly agreed to take in a very inadequate number of refugees, only because of the sheer courage of refugees against all odds.

The EU also showed no international solidarity in the way it treated the Greek government.

Julie Websteron Facebook

Leave racist Europe

In Saxony racists cheer as a fire destroys a refugee shelter. The Mediterranean has become a mass graveyard for refugees blockaded by Nato warships.

Desperate human beings rot in squalor in Calais and Dunkirk while Europe boasts it has “free movement”.

Neo-Nazi parties such as France’s Front National and Hungary’s Jobbik flourish across the continent. Cameron spends days negotiating with Europe for the “right” to withhold benefits to immigrants.

Europe is rotten with racism and fascism. I will vote to Leave.

Sasha Simic, East London

A debate in Labour

I was recently invited to give a talk about fighting the Trade Union Bill to New Forest East Labour Party.

I expected a small and mature audience to listen politely for 20 minutes. Instead there were 29 people of all ages.

Many were very keen to discuss how to fight for stronger unions, support refugees and campaign against the crimes of the powerful.

Enthusiasm for Jeremy Corbyn has doubled membership and made it easier to talk about politics.

One young nurse had set up a support campaign for refugees. She repeatedly demanded we march on the streets. The 19 March protests went down well.

For 90 minutes the discussion ranged across all these areas—and the overall theme was basically reform or revolution.

Matt Clement, Southampton

Look at the big picture

The struggles of the junior doctors and the students fighting to save the NHS Bursary don’t take place in isolation.

Protests against Trident highlight this rotten government’s priorities.

Funds are available for warfare while the NHS faces endless cuts and attacks on workers.

Racists say migrants are a drain on our society. But 11 percent of all NHS workers and 26 percent of doctors are foreign nationals.

By uniting the struggles we can combat the attacks of the ruling class.

Jenny Leow, South London

Obama let us down on Guantanamo

Way back in 2008, US president Barack Obama promised he would close down the notorious Guantanamo Bay prison camp before he left office.

Eight years on he’s doing it at the last minute—sort of. Indefinite detention will continue, just not in that building. Even that’s only if the US Congress agrees.

Sam Dyson, Peterborough

Get Branson off the planet

I see Richard Branson is pushing on with his plans for space tourism for the mega rich—despite the death of a pilot. I suppose Alton Towers just isn’t good enough for billionaires.

You would think he’d be busy enough trying to grab chunks of the NHS.

Although the project is not exactly green there might be a positive side to it—if he offers one way tickets only and becomes the first passenger.

Geoff Beer, Kent

Seize this time, Labour

Your article says “Tories’ division over EU referendum is a chance to beat back this rotten government” (Socialist Worker online, 20 February).

The best time for Jeremy Corbyn to strike this rotten government is now!

Lizzie Christianon Facebook

Will the TUC fight back?

You report “Junior doctors back more strikes against Hunt’s contract” (Socialist Worker online, 19 February).

What’s the TUC doing about it? Are they all dead?

Fred Marshallon Facebook

Help Feminist Library live on

The Feminist Library in Southwark, south London, is in danger of eviction on 1 March due to rent rise.

Please sign and share the petition to save it at

@emmashulaon Twitter

New rule cuts vital payouts

Employment Tribunal payouts in Yorkshire and the North East have fallen by 60 percent in a year.

Anyone now unfairly dismissed at work wanting to bring a case to a tribunal has to pay a fee many can’t afford.This pernicious rule was introduced in 2013 by the Tories and Lib Dems.

John Appleyard, West Yorkshire

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