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Our election manifesto: capitalism must go

These elections are taking place in the middle of the biggest economic and financial crisis since the 1930s. In a world that has the potential to produce enough food, clothes, housing and the other amenities of life for all, factories are closing down, workers are being laid off, unemployment is growing, houses are being repossessed and people are having to tighten their belts. And for once the main parties are being honest in offering more of the same, competing with each other as to which of them is going to impose the most “savage cuts”.

Capitalism in relatively “good” times is bad enough, but capitalism in an economic crisis makes it plain for all to see that it is not a system geared to meeting people's needs. It’s a system based on the pursuit of profits, where the harsh economic law of no profit, no production” prevails. The headlong pursuit of profits has led to a situation where the owners can't make profits at the same rate as before. The class who own and control the places where wealth is produced have gone on strike – refusing to allow these workplaces to be used to produce what people need, some desperately. So, as in the 1930s, it’s poverty in the midst of potential plenty again. Cutbacks in production and services alongside unmet needs. Why should we put up with this? There is an alternative.

But that's the way capitalism works, and must work. The politicians in charge of the governments don't really know what to do, not that they can do much to change the situation anyway. They are just hoping that the panic measures they have taken will work. But the slump won’t end until conditions for profitable production have come about again, and that requires real wages to fall and unprofitable firms to go out of business. So, there's no way that bankruptcies, cut-backs and lay-offs are going to be avoided, whatever governments do or whichever party is in power.

What can be done? Nothing within the profit system. It can‘t be mended, so it must be ended. But this is something we must do ourselves.

The career politicians, with their empty promises and futile measures, can do nothing for us. We need to organise to bring in a new system where goods and services are produced to meet people's needs. But we can only produce what we need if we own and control the places where this is carried out. So these must be taken out of the hands of the rich individuals, private companies and states that now control them and become the common heritage of all, under our democratic control. In short, socialism in its original sense. This has nothing to do with the failed state capitalism that used to exist in Russia or with what still exists in China and Cuba.

THE SOCIALIST PARTY is putting up one candidate, in Vauxhall in London, to give people there a chance to show that they don't want capitalism but want instead a society of common ownership, democratic control and production just for use not profit, with goods and services available on the basis of “from each according to ability, to each according to needs”. Elsewhere we are advocating that people show this by writing “WORLD SOCIALISM” across their ballot paper.

If you agree, you can show this by voting for us. But more importantly get in touch with us to help working towards such a society after the election is over.

Our campaign can be followed on our election blog at

http://spgb.blogspot.com/