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Fianna Fail & Greens take a hammering - Now build a real alternative

Michael Murphy, 23 June 09

THE ROUTING of Fianna Fail and the Green Party in the recent local and European elections graphically illustrated the deep anger and resentment felt by thousands of workers, unemployed and young people all over the country.

This was pay-back time by ordinary people for the education and wage cuts, the pension levy and attempts to make us pay for a crisis we didn’t create.

In particular the victory of Joe Higgins in the Dublin European constituency is a political earthquake and demonstrates, on the one hand ,the raw anger on the door steps, but also the deep impact the Socialist Party and Joe Higgins has had on Irish society in the last number of years. Taking a seat in a reduced constituency and ousting the most established big business party in this country in the process was a phenomenal achievement and one of the biggest upsets in Irish political history.

The Socialist Party does not stand for election to win positions to feather our own nests. We use them as a platform to build a movement for real change. In particular we will use the position of MEP and council positions to fight the further economic onslaught that is coming our way. The next budget will be vicious with likely attacks on social welfare payments, a cut in the minimum wage and taxes on children’s allowance.

In late July or early August the Commission on Taxation will deliver their report to government and are likely to recommend the re-introduction of domestic water rates, a property tax or some form of household rates or a combination of all of these. The Socialist Party will fight against these unjust attacks and double taxes on workers just as we have been at the heart of every battle faced by working people in Ireland in the last number of years.

We won’t just fight against the attacks but we will argue and campaign against capitalism itself. The economic crisis is a direct result of the greed and profiteering that is endemic in capitalism. The Socialist Party stands for a society where wealth is used for the benefit of the majority, where major industry and banks are taken into democratic public ownership linked to a plan of production to meet the needs of society, not the profits of a tiny few. The crisis of capitalism in Ireland and internationally will continue to heap misery and economic attacks on ordinary people – workers will have no alternative but to fight back and get organised.

The Socialist Party will be a key part of this fightback. We have developed an unrivalled authority and respect among thousands of people. We have proudly defended the ideas of socialism while others have ditched or hidden these ideas for cheap electoral gain.
If you are angry, voting for the Socialist Party was a good first step but it’s not enough. Don’t just sit back and admire Joe Higgins, get stuck in with him and join the Socialist Party, be part of a movement that can rock the capitalist establishment in this country in the coming years.