Last November members of our Woolwich and Dartford branches put over the socialist case at the South East Model Parliament. Our comrade H. Ramsay proposed:
That this House, recognising the failure of the system of private and state ownership known as capitalism to solve the problems of society, declares that the solution of these problems lies in the establishment of a social system based on the common ownership and democratic control of the means and instruments for producing and distributing wealth, by and in the interest of the whole of society.
In what one local paper called “one of the most vigorous and electric debates in the Parliament’s first year of life” the main opposition to the motion came from the Tories who were unable in their arguments to rise much above the profit-is-an-incentive and look-at-East Germany level. Needless to say our members were easily able to deal with such objections. The debate was fully reported in the Kentish Times and the Kentish Independent.
Debate with Plaid Cymru
On December 10 the Party debated the London branch of Plaid Cymru at one of our Soho Square meetings.
Our comrade Buick argued that the basic fallacy of all nationalism, British as well as Welsh, was in seeking national solutions to world problems. The working class, he said, was a world-wide class. A change of state would not help solve working class problems any more than a change of government. For their cause lay not in the form or type of political set-up but in the economic system. Workers of all lands should unite to change this system from one based on the class ownership of the means of life to one based on common ownership and democratic control with production for use, not profit.
Dafydd Stephens, for the Plaid, said that the Welsh people had a long radical tradition and were still today overwhelmingly left wing. Association with England was holding back social change in Wales. Plaid Cymru, he said, could not wait for the people of England let alone the people of the world to change. They wanted an independent Wales now. With independence Wales would be able to push through many radical social measures as had other small countries like Norway.
In the article “Religion Retreat” in the December Socialist Standard occurs the passage “Catholics and Protestants, Atheists and Jews, are found in any and every political party, according to individual conviction.” This, of course does not apply to the Socialist Party of Gt. Britain where rejection of religion, in theory and practice, is a condition of membership.
BOOKS FOR CLASSES
We require books for the purpose of the Party’s Educational classes. Any member or sympathiser who wishes to dispose of books on Socialist theory, History or Politics is asked either to donate or offer them to us. All books received will be acknowledged.
Party Educational Organiser