THE deeper the crisis of the capitalist system gets, the more desperate the measures that it takes to sustain the bosses and bankers’ system, the more that Prime Minister Brown steps up into the breach to try to prove conclusively to the ruling class that he is their man.
For over a year he has been insisting that wage rises in the public sector will have to be below inflation wage cuts, in order to defeat inflation.
He knows as well as anybody else that the source of inflation is not public sector wages but the crisis of the capitalist system.
The dollar has been progressively devalued by rate cuts that are becoming ever more frantic, to try and keep US industry afloat, while the imperialist wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost the US up to $1 trillion.
This war has driven up the price of oil, gas and most metals by hundreds of percent, as well as driving the price of gold up to nearly $1,000 an ounce.
This vast inflation in oil prices has ruined a host of so-called developing nations, such as Kenya and Sri Lanka, which are collapsing into civil war and revolution, while food prices and the prices of basic commodities have been driven upwards all over the capitalist world, cutting the purchasing power of workers’ wages.
This has directly led to the US sub-prime mortgage crisis and to an undermining of the banks all over the capitalist world, to the point where they will not even lend to each other, and where even bankers are saying that gold is the only money and that the capitalist world is heading for a slump.
None of this is the fault of public sector workers, or their minute wage increases. It is the capitalist system, in its historic crisis, now transformed into its death agony, that is the cause.
It is in this situation that the Labour lieutenants of capitalism from Brown downwards rush to aid the bosses and the bankers by making the working class pay for the bosses’ crisis.
They hand £25 billion plus, and the same amount in guarantees to the Northern Rock Bank, and announce that they are willing to court state bankruptcy to provide the same facility to other banks. At the same time they tell workers that they must agree to three-year below inflation wage deals, which will see their wages savagely slashed, and their families unable to pay the rising cost of food, of energy, and of rents or mortgages.
They rush to destroy the Welfare State, ending final salary pensions, privatising the NHS and, as Brown spelt out on Monday, by forcing the sick, and disabled off benefit and into work, and forcing youth into fake apprenticeships, where the boss will get £3,000 per ‘apprentice’ a year and where the ‘apprentice’ will not even be eligible for the minimum wage!
Labour’s real programme for the disabled is revealed in the fact that it is shutting down over 20 Remploy factories for the disabled which are trade union organised and where disabled workers are productively employed for a living wage.
The government is intent on trying to save capitalism by pauperising the working class.
In the face of this savage onslaught the trade union leaders are paralysed and have not been able to lead even a single struggle.
It is crystal clear that the only way to defend workers’ wages, and their rights, is by overthrowing capitalism and by bringing in socialism.
This is why the Workers Revolutionary Party must be built to provide the leadership for this socialist revolution.
Workers need a revolutionary leadership and a programme for this crisis.
Instead of propping up the banks they must be nationalised and all mortgage debt abolished.
Mass sackings must be met with occupations to demand the nationalisation of industries that the bosses want to close.
Hospital closures must be stopped with occupations.
A programme of public works must be inaugurated to build millions of council homes, to eradicate homelessness and provide youth with jobs, and training in real skills at trade union rates of pay.
A general strike must be organised to bring down the Brown government to go forward to a workers government.