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The man who stole the Nile: An Ethiopian billionaire’s outrageous land grab By Frederick Kaufman
Forget about diamond heists, bank robberies, and drilling into the golden intestines of fort Knox. In this precarious world-historic moment, food has become the most valuable asset of them all—and a billionaire from Ethiopia named Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi is getting his hands on as much of it as possible, flying it over the heads of his starving countrymen, and selling the treasure to Saudi Arabia. Last year, Al Amoudi, whom most Ethiopians call the Sheikh, exported a million tons of rice, about seventy pounds for every Saudi citizen, the scene of the great grain robbery was Gambella, a bog the size of Belgium in Ethiopia’s southwest whose rivers feed the Nile.
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15 hours 10 min ago
Our case against Scottish separatism is not an argument in favour of the other nationalism, British unionism. Workers should not have any illusions in a capitalist state of whatever nationality, and instead to fight for their own class interests. Scotland leaving the UK is not going to seriously dent the power of the UK. Workers in an independent Scotland will still get fucked over by their
1 day 15 min ago

Few people know what the word “democracy” means. If asked, they tend to say things like “being able to express your opinions”, “doing what you like”, etc.. Very few people are aware that the meaning of the word is ‘rule by the people’. If people are asked whether they think that parliamentary democracy actually brings about rule by the people then most are sceptical. They have a healthy contempt for politicians because it is known through long experience that the measures they enact are not usually in the interests of the people. What is very clear is that whoever forms the government they serve the interests of the capitalist ruling class. It is the owners of the means of production who exercise real power. They have power to make the decisions that have a major impact on the lives of the rest of us. Yet most go on voting because they have a vague feeling that the civil liberties we do enjoy are somehow dependent on people voting in elections. Although most of us have serious doubts that it gives us any real power over our lives we go through with the ritual. Somehow it is easier to go along with the crowd than to stand out by abstaining or as we advise, spoiling the voting paper.

“Working Men of all Countries, Unite!” because it is the struggle of workers against the bosses which will propel mankind forward to the socialist society and which will liberate all peoples  from the reign of classes forever. This struggle of the working class takes place on a global scale to defeat the capitalists on a world-wide scale.  This principle simply means the solidarity of one worker with another, irrespective of nationality and support for the struggles of workers in other countries.

The Socialist Party wishes to make it clear that we consider the referendum not from the point of view of nationalism, but from the point of view of socialism and from the desire to find the best method of struggle for socialism.  We do not accept that the struggle for independence is more important than the struggle for socialism. A century or more of experience of reformist, national liberation governments has amply demonstrated that this neither gives the  people power nor poses any threat to the rule of the capitalist class. On the contrary, the nationalism of  governments has helped perpetuate the rule of capital by taking off some of its sharpest edges and by holding out the false hope of bringing about more fundamental changes within the present capitalist system. As a socialist party we have always asserted, there can be no real democracy – no rule by the people as a whole – while the means of production are owned and controlled by a small minority, the capitalist class. Their control of the economy and the state means that they can resist and obstruct any serious threat to their class interests. A century or more of experience has shown that attempts by nationalists parties to change capitalism are doomed to failure.Resistance to oppression and exploitation is a constant factor in every country who have acquired their independence. There are many left nationalists in Scotland , people who wish to see Scotland become a “socialist” country. But there is more to the achievement of socialism than that.

 Socialism is the answer to Scotland’s problems and that only through socialism will exploitation and  alienation be done away with. To say this may only be to state a truism, a truism that is equally valid in England, and in every country in the world.  It is quite clear that we can only achieve real control over our lives by getting rid of the capitalist system as a whole and this can be done only by means of genuine socialist revolution.

1 day 15 min ago

Left nationalists will argue that Scottish nationalism is somehow progressive and different to British nationalism and therefore Scots should vote Yes in the referendum. We say that this is a dangerous poison that is being spread by Leftists. It has served to divide workers. We argue that every nation state is by its very nature anti-working class. There can be no community of interests between two classes in antagonism with one another, the non-owners in society and the owners (the workers and the capitalists). And the state ultimately exists only to defend the property interests of the owning class at any given point in history – which is why modern states across the world send the police and army in to break strikes and otherwise seek to protect the interests of the capitalists and “business” at every turn.

Basically, the SNP is just another reformist party angling for support on a programme of reforms styling itself on the Nordic social democrats. They are endeavouring to outbid all the other parties by proposing that the wealth from North Sea Oil be divided among five million plus people only, instead of fifty million, and paint a picture of how, given self-government, oil revenues will provide a paradise in Scotland. Predictably the nationalists claim that their first priority is to launch a "war on poverty". The important thing to note is that the nationalists are merely making promises, and politicians have always found that far easier to make than fulfil. They pretend to the workers that should independence come then all the oil revenues will automatically go into the Scottish exchequer and be used mainly for the benefit of the workers. They must know that the capitalist class in Scotland would insist that oil revenues be used to reduce the burden of taxation which rests on them. The other people to benefit from Scottish independence would be the local politicians, who would be able to award themselves grander titles and grander salaries.

Should a sovereign Scotland be established Scots will discover that they cannot will or legislate away those problems of capitalism. No country in the world, no matter how independent or rich in resources, has yet succeeded in eliminating poverty, unemployment, insecurity, etc. For the working class there will be wages while they are working and pensions when they are too old or infirm. It is of no concern to workers in Scotland whether they are governed from London or by a separate independent government in Edinburgh. This is because the cause of the problems they face is the capitalist economic system of production for profit, not the form of government. And the capitalist economic system would continue to exist in a constitutionally independent Scotland.

The goal of the socialist movement is to establish a real world community without frontiers. The Left Ntionalists proclaim themselves visionaries but they cannot see beyond the narrow confines of the nation-state, conceived in medieval times and as outmoded as the clan system it replaced. It is the Socialist Party who are the true men and women of vision, who look forward to and struggle for a new world of common ownership and democratic control of society's resources, and uncluttered with the frontiers and class divisions which go hand-in-hand with "the nation".

We don’t want or care about Scottish independence any more than we care or support a “United Kingdom”.  We do want world socialism, where the means of life will be owned in common by the whole of the world socialist community. The real liberation struggle for freedom is the class struggle.

1 day 12 hours ago
Few people know what the word “democracy” means. If asked, they tend to say things like “being able to express your opinions”, “doing what you like”, etc.. Very few people are aware that the literal meaning of the word is ’rule by the people’. If people are asked whether they think that parliamentary democracy actually brings about rule by the people then most are sceptical. They have a
1 day 15 hours ago