Socialist Worker

LETTERS: Where can I turn now that Bernie Sanders has let us down?

Issue No. 2513

Bernie Sanders on the campaign trail earlier this year

Bernie Sanders on the campaign trail earlier this year (Pic: flickr/Michael Vador)


I feel betrayed and let down. I’ve backed Bernie Sanders all the way in his campaign to be the Democratic Party candidate for US president. Now he has backed Hillary Clinton.

OK, he would have lost at the very undemocratic Democratic convention, but he didn’t have to back her. He could have run as an independent and it would have been brilliant.

The main argument I hear is that Bernie has backed Clinton because we have to stop Trump. But there’s really worrying news.

Opinion polls show that Trump is ahead of Clinton in several key states. He’s ahead in Pennsylvania and Florida, and about level in Ohio.

Forget about the overall polls. Most states are won by big majorities for one party or the other, and then a few “swing states” decide the outcome.

Trump is doing well among a section of people who feel let down and are angry at the system.

Bernie could reach out to them, Clinton can’t.

Maybe this will change, but in any case Clinton is not going to be anything but a right wing president. She is for the military, she is for the rich, she is for the corporations.

Bernie spent months telling us she was Wall Street’s candidate and he was right.

It’s a fraud to say she will be accountable to anyone except the rich and powerful.

I now have to decide whether to vote for the Green Party’s Jill Stein or to not vote at all. But perhaps I also have to double down on activism.

It’s great to see the Black Lives Matter protests in Britain. Some of them are as big as the ones here!

I’m going to get more into these and to look for other ways to make a difference whoever wins.

I hope your Jeremy Corbyn can stay at the top of his party.

And if they get rid of him, let’s hope he doesn’t do like Sanders and tell people to transfer to whoever the party establishment wants.

Hannah Shillingstone, Boston, Massachusetts


Is it time to join Labour?

I’m an ex-member of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP), but still broadly in agreement with the party’s political line. So I have always been opposed to revolutionaries entering the Labour Party.

For me this has never been a matter of pure principle but of practical timing. In “normal” times, there is always the danger of wasting time and energy banging one’s head against a brick wall.

But I am convinced that we are no longer living in “normal” times. It’s no longer adequate to stand on the sidelines cheering on Jeremy Corbyn while having no active part in the struggle to get him re-elected.

I’m not suggesting that the SWP forms a covert faction within Labour. But I do think individual comrades should consider joining up—at least temporarily.

Jake Douglas, North London

The relationship between Labour MPs and members was described by Richard Crossman back in 1963.

He said, “The Labour Party required militants, politically conscious socialists to do the work of organising the constituencies.

“But since these militants tended to be ‘extremists’ a constitution was needed which maintained their enthusiasm by apparently creating a full party democracy while excluding them from effective power.”

This rift is now erupting.

Graham, West London

I’m confused as to why Socialist Worker says we have to defend Jeremy Corbyn.

He is not a socialist and all the Labour Party does in power is act as caretakers for British capitalism.

Steven Johnston, Stockport

Corbyn showed no solidarity with the poorest and most vulnerable in Britain or the European Union (EU).

The EU exploits workers and the poor. That’s something someone who claims to be a socialist should have highlighted during the EU debate.

Corbyn didn’t—he left the poorest floundering without representation.

That’s why I can’t support him now. Sorry JC, but you blew it dude.

Keila Hawksmore, on Facebook

I am a man on the left and in my seventies. When I heard Jeremy was on the ballot l nearly cried.

Stephen Coyle, on Facebook


No more pessimism—our rulers are in crisis

It’s incredible how pessimistic some on the left are. The British ruling class is exposed as incompetent charlatans and afraid of the consequences.

Capitalism is unstable and crises are part of that.

One socialist told me recently that Margaret Thatcher’s resignation only led to John Major “who was no better”.

This was a way of explaining that Theresa May will be no better, and possibly worse, than David Cameron.

If you don’t believe our side can fight and can win then the best you can hope for is for the “least-worse” Tory to stay in office.

I think, for all its contradictions, we have entered a new period of possibilities in which working people can rediscover the power to fight back and to win.

Sasha Simic, East London


Riding the freedom bus in Yorkshire

The South Yorkshire Freedom Riders are stepping up the fight against bus service cuts in Barnsley.

The council and the bus companies are consulting on changes in bus services. The bus cuts will make life more difficult for everyone. Older people are already restricted by the removal of free local train travel.

These cuts will make it even more difficult for them to get out and about in the community. What’s the point of having a bus pass if there are no buses where you live?

We will be holding a meeting followed by a demonstration this Thursday.

Tony Nuttall, Barnsley


Nukes only protect profits

Trident is a total waste of money. All it does is make Britain a legitimate nuclear target. And for what?

So that the arms manufacturers, their stockholders and their bought and paid for corrupt politicians can make money.

Martyn Meacham, on Facebook


Blair is not the only one

Tony Blair should be put in the dock over the Iraq war.

And so should the rest of the murdering mob—John Howard from Australia and George Bush from the US.

Liz Ross, Melbourne, Australia


Shame on Esso bosses

What’s going on at Esso’s oil refinery in Southampton is disgusting—to pay migrant workers half of what others earn is a disgrace.

Margaret Woods, Glasgow


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