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Monday, 28 November 2011

How a victory over public sector pensions can give all workers a boost in confidence

This wednesday 30th of November its been well documented that up to 4 million public sector workers will be out on strike first time this many on one day since the 1926 great general strike. But this could be a game changer.

If and its a big if the government of millionaires are foced back and have to retreat which is not impossibly given their record of u-turns already. Mass action of working people can give huge confidence to other workers in say the private sector and to young and old workers.
An opinion poll commissioned by BBC News suggests 61% of people believe public sector workers are justified in going on strike over pension changes.
The research also indicates differences between men and women in their outlook on the strikes and the economy.
The polling firm Comres interviewed 1,005 adults by telephone across England, Scotland and Wales one week ago.
The poll indicates greater sympathy for the industrial action among women - at 67% - compared with men, at 55%.
Younger people, it also suggests, are considerably more supportive of the strikes than pensioners; almost four in five 18 to 24-year-olds back the action, a little under half of over-65s do.

No doubt much of this support has come through student demonstrations and demonstrations like the Jarrow march drawing attention to youth in struggle and how the young are being hit hard by this crisis in capitalism.

But a only a complete withdraw of the pension reforms and a change back to RPi from CPI which this government cynically changed when they came in will only do for ordinary workers who are due to loose out big time.

As i've said before ordinary working people did not cause this crisis so they should not have to pay for it. Not a single cut is nessesary as i've pointed out if the 120 billion estimated pounds of evaded tax from rich corporations and business's was properly collected.

Failing that the banks should all be nationalised under democratic workers control. These key demands must be started to be taken up by workers in struggle i feel.

But the sense of confidence a win in this dispute will given workers and unions alike will be huge. Just imagine if we push teh government back on this. We will be able to say look our unions pushed back the gov on this and strike action works now lets go further and push for more and more.

Lets be under no illusion this government forged together in the cellar of teh city of London a government of austerity and misery for working people who have no mandate are extremely weak and can be defeated.

For this to happen we must stand united public and private sector workers. No flinching from any trade union leaders. No to any secret deals everything must be done all out in the open.

The fact is public sector pensions are affordable and actually go down as a percentage to GDP over the years according to the Lord Hutton report.

Lets not buy the arguements that private sector pensions are poor so public sector should be too. That is a recipe for a race to the bottom. It is a arguement that private sector pensions should be decent aswell.

If the government says it cannot afford this then we must say we cannot afford your system and call time on capitalism and the 1%. Its time to look for alternatives. That alternative is socialism.

A system based on peoples needs before profits. A system that looks after the 99% not just the 1%.

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