NO WAGE OR JOB CUTS! Unions must call a general strike for a sliding scale of wages and hours to secure living standards!

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IN THE last 48-hours energy bills have risen by over 50%. The pensioners triple lock guarantee has been smashed. Students repayments on their loans are now pauperising graduates. Meanwhile workers face a National Insurance hike, and hikes in council tax and road tax.

The ruling class has not only declared war on Russia, it has declared war on the working class at home.

Millions of people will now feel the impact of an unprecedented £700-a-year rise in energy costs. The 54% rise in the energy price cap means a household using a typical amount of gas and electricity will now pay £1,971 per year. A further rise pushing the annual bill up to £2,600 is expected in October.

This comes as inflation has been let rip, with basic food stuffs and petrol prices spiralling ever upwards, as we pay for British capitalism’s war with Russia with wages frozen and slashed by inflation. As far as the ruling class of this country is concerned, it is at war not just with Russia but with the working class at home.

The entire weight of this capitalist created world debt crisis has been unceremoniously dumped on to the backs of workers and their families.

And the shot and shell of this class war is starting to fly. The 800 sackings of the P&O workers, forced from their ships by security guards, with an army of cheap labour agency workers standing on the docks waiting to replace them, is just the start.

Fire and rehire has become the ‘new normal’ with thousands of jobs gone at Heathrow Airport, British Gas and now threatened at Royal Mail.

In all these struggles the trade union leaders while making big speeches about how they will ‘fight for every job’ end up calling for a compromise with the bosses and the government, begging for negotiations when there are no negotiations to be had.

The only way to defend the gains of the working class is to organise for a general strike to bring this government down.

The co-leader of the Russian Revolution, Leon Trotsky wrote in the Transitional Programme: ‘Against a bounding rise in prices, which with the approach of war will assume an ever more unbridled character, one can fight only under the slogan of a sliding scale of wages. This means that collective agreements should assure an automatic rise in wages in relation to the increase in price of consumer goods.’

Trotsky explains: ‘The Fourth International advances a system of transitional demands, the essence of which is contained in the fact that ever more openly and decisively they will be directed against the very bases of the bourgeois regime. The old “minimal programme” is superseded by the transitional programme, the task of which lies in systematic mobilisation of the masses for the proletarian revolution.’

This is exactly the way forward for the organised working class and both the elderly and the youth who need to have the strength of the working class behind them.

Trade unions must demand a sliding scale of wages and pensions, so that when inflation goes up, wages and pensions go up accordingly. There must also be a sliding scale of hours, so that when a company is in trouble, workers’ hours are reduced with no loss of pay. There must be no sackings.

This will be the programme of the developing socialist revolution! With these demands the trade unions will lead the masses of the youth, the middle class and the elderly to the organisation of the socialist revolution, and the taking of power by the working class.

There must be mass strike action now because what is coming up will be worse than the poverty and privation experienced by the working class in the 1930s.

These revolutionary demands will mobilise the working class, the youth and the majority of the middle class for the socialist revolution to bring down the capitalist system which exploits them.

In this rapidly developing revolutionary situation the building up of the Workers Revolutionary Party and the Young Socialists as mass organisations to provide the leadership to mobilise the working class to take the power has never been more urgent.

With inflation soaring to 8% and well beyond and wages being cut to the bone, the only policy that can protect workers from inflation is the battle for a sliding scale of wages, led by the revolutionary party.

With this great battle, set to be fought out to a finish by the working class and the youth, there is no better time than today to join the WRP and the Young Socialists!