Everyday manifesto

We lay out what we think that we, as ordinary people, can do to make our lives, our communities, our jobs and our planet better.

In our ideas here we have not made any suggestions about what the government should do, or how we would run things if we were elected like political parties do. This is because we believe that political parties and governments are part of the problem, not part of any solution to the world’s problems.

It is about how we can act in our everyday lives to try to improve our conditions, our local areas and our planet.

Libcom note 2012: This was a project we started, intending to expand upon but in the end we didn't do more than a few articles. To some extent it has been superseded by our introductory guides, but we could go back and update and expand this at some point. If you would like to write additional content for it please let us know in the comments below.

Introduction: Why an Everyday manifesto?

We outline why we believe that political parties and governments cannot be used to improve our lives, and why we think that the only way meaningful change can occur is if we as ordinary people get together at the grassroots and make them happen.

In practical terms this means that instead of appealing to our leaders for change, or forming political parties to take state power, we make the changes we want – ourselves – and from the bottom up.

We call this direct action, and we think that this is the best way for us to win better, more fulfilling existences. Direct action is a oft-misused term – in our Glossary it is defined as “action taken directly by people themselves to make changes they want in the world, without appealing to the government, political parties or bosses. Most mass direct action is in the form of strikes, non-payment of unjust taxes, and blockades.”

Direct action has won countless gains for working people the world over. We used to have to work 14-hour days, seven days a week until workers came together and organised in trade unions and other associations, faced up to savage repression and successfully won the much better (but still totally inadequate) conditions and wages we have today.

Mass direct action in this country only a little over ten years ago defeated Maggie Thatcher’s Poll Tax, while electoral efforts were fruitless [1].

While electoral ("political") activity ensures that we all become accustomed to following leaders and letting them act on our behalf, we support direct action as the best available means for preparing ourselves to manage their own personal and collective interests.

Libertarian communists therefore argue that we need to reclaim the power which has been concentrated into the hands of the state. That is why we stress direct action. Through direct action, the people dominate their own struggles, it is we who conduct it, organise it, manage it. We do not hand over to others the task of self-liberation. That way, we become accustomed to managing our own affairs, creating alternative, libertarian, forms of social organisation which can become a force to resist the state, win reforms and, ultimately, become the framework of a free society. Such organisations often appear in times of struggle as community assemblies, factory committees, workers' councils, and so on. These organs of direct-democracy have been the most important element of revolutions over the past 250 years, although they were often usurped into representative institutions or crushed militarily.

Community Assembly in Argentina
The embryo of a new society - community assembly in the Argentine uprising of 2001. One third of the population participated in the assemblies.

We are in favour of collective, mass action. There is nothing more isolated, atomised and individualistic than voting in elections. It is the act of one person in a box by themselves, the total opposite of collective struggle. The individual is alone before, during and after the act of voting. Indeed, unlike direct action, which, by its very nature, throws up new forms of organisation in order to manage and co-ordinate the struggle, voting creates no alternative organs of workers’ self-management; nor can it, as it is not based on nor does it create collective action or organisation. It simply empowers an individual (the elected representative) to act on behalf of a collection of other individuals (the voters). This will hinder collective organisation and action as the voters expect their representative to act and fight for them - as if they did not, they would not vote for them in the first place!

In other words, the idea that socialists standing for elections somehow prepares working class people for a new world is simply wrong. Utilising the state, standing in elections, only prepares people for following leaders - it does not encourage the self-activity, self-organisation, direct action and mass struggle required to build a better society. Moreover, use of elections has a corrupting effect on those who use it. The history of radicals using elections has been a long one of betrayal and the transformation of revolutionary parties into reformist ones. Thus using the existing state ensures that the division at the heart of existing society (namely a few who govern and the many who obey) is reproduced in the movements trying to abolish it. It boils down to handing effective leadership to special people, to "leaders," just when the situation requires working people to solve their own problems and take matters into their own hands. Only the struggle for freedom can be the school for freedom, and by placing power into the hands of leaders, utilising the existing state ensures that socialism is postponed rather than prepared for.

On a more practical level, electoral activity is stacked towards the rich and powerful. To even register on the public radar requires multi-million pound advertising, and coverage in the corporate media. Trying to get an independent candidate elected into office is massively time-consuming and expensive – time which could be used building up a working class counter-power, in the forum of organisations based on solidarity between people, where we can stick together and force the state to give in to our demands.

Governments only grant demands to the people when their very power is threatened – for example the introduction of social housing following the mass workers’ and ex-soldiers’ squatting movement after World War 2, or nationalisation of the coal industry following massive strikes. In Latin America today, left-wing governments in countries such as Bolivia, Venezuela, Argentina and Brazil are granting large-scale land and social reform. This is not due to their benevolence, however – it is due to the massive social movements which have been using direct action for years to make the changes themselves. Landless and homeless movements have been occupying land and buildings, workers have taken over bankrupt factories, and communities have blockaded roads to stop privatisation and sell-offs of natural resources. If the governments had not granted these reforms, they would have been overthrown! In fact, many governments only ratify changes which workers have already made, such as in Argentina legalising already-occupied factories and in the Spanish and Russian revolutions giving official sanction to land collectivisations already undertaken.

Right-wing terror - the Chilean coup 1973

Chile 1973 - Soldiers round up dissident workers in the National Stadium following the coup against the democratically-elected left-wing government.

In many countries the two-party system making it almost impossible for progressive parties to get elected, since if you vote for the most radical you will split the progressive vote and maybe let the conservative or reactionary government in. In the rare instances where radical parties who claim to want to make improvements for the majority (for example by taxing or taking into public ownership large corporations, or introducing strict environmental or workers’ rights laws) become large, one of the following always happens:

▫ They sell out their principles in order to receive backing from corporations or the mass media - also owned by huge corporations – which is necessary in most countries to even get elected. Good examples of this would be New Labour, and Green Parties in power in Germany and Belgium.

▫They get in power, try to implement progressive policies and find themselves at the mercy of larger economic forces. For example if one country introduces a good minimum wage, or high taxes corporate profits there will be capital flight – businesses will just shift overseas. This was demonstrated very strongly by the capital flight during the 1974-79 Labour government which tried to carry out a pro-worker program [2].

▫ They get in power, try to implement progressive policies and are overthrown by force by domestic or foreign forces backed by business interests. The CIA-backed coup against the left-wing Chilean President Allende in 1973 (see picture above) being a case in point; another example almost occurred in Italy after World War 2, where the right-wing secret army, Gladio was to launch a coup if the Communist Party entered government.

We want a world where we are all in control our own lives, our own communities, and our own destinies, and where we are free to live out our dreams and desires. We recognise that many people who are members of political parties share our goals, but we sincerely believe that electoral activity is a massively costly (in both time and money) exercise which ultimately is counter-productive.

Politics is a game set up by the rich and powerful, without a level playing field, and as ordinary people we are best off using our energy to organise ourselves and build solidarity amongst all workers to fight for our own interests. Of course we welcome all progressive government reforms, but none our ever handed down – we must fight for them, all the while continuing to build the new world within the shell of the old.

For libertarian communists, while we would like to live in a classless, stateless, free society whether we get there or not in our lifetimes does not matter. We believe that our ideas and tactics are the best for winning better lives for ourselves in the here and now as well. Apart from direct action and solidarity being the most effective methods of winning improvements to our communities, our environment and our work, they are even beneficial to the individual participant’s mental health, and the bonds which are formed between people in such activity [3] can never be forgotten.

libcom.org


Footnotes
1 - For more information on Militant's electoral opposition to the Poll Tax see here
2 - More information here
3 – Sussex University Study, 2002. Press release here

Environment

A summary and examination of the environmental crisis and its causes, and how we think that the problems can be solved.

The Earth is facing an environmental crisis on a scale unprecedented in human history. This environmental crisis is already responsible for high levels of human suffering. If the crisis continues to develop at its current rate, the ultimate result will be the extinction of human life on the planet.
We call for action to end the environmental crisis because of the threat it poses to humankind, and because we recognise that nature and the environment have value in their own terms.
The main environmental problems include:

Air pollution: creates global warming (or climate change): a general increase in planetary temperatures that will severely disrupt weather patterns causing mass floods, droughts, chaotic climate fluctuations and disease killing millions; destroys the ozone layer that filters out dangerous cancer-causing rays from the sun; turns rain water into acid that destroys plant and animal life. It also causes respiratory and other diseases amongst humans which kills over 30,000 people a year in the UK1.
Solid waste: the sea and the land environments are poisoned by the dumping of dangerous industrial wastes (such as mercury and nuclear waste); the use of materials that nature cannot break down in packaging and in other products, particularly disposable products, have turned many parts of the world into large rubbish dumps. This is also a waste of finite resources and it poisons and injures people.
Soil erosion: this takes place in both the West and the so-called “developing” world, and is the result of factors such the (mis-)use of chemical fertilisers, dangerous pesticides etc., as well as inappropriate land use, land overuse, and the felling of trees. For these reasons, soil is eroded at a rate faster than that at which it is being produced which contributes to rural poverty2/
Extinction: plants and animals are being made extinct at a faster rate than any time since the dinosaurs died out, 60 million years ago. This results in the loss of many species, and undermines the eco-sphere on which all life depends.

What’s behind the environmental crisis?
There is nothing inherently environmentally destructive about modern industrial technologies3. However as they are (mis-)used today, industry – particularly the burning of fossil fuels like oil, coal and gas for energy, which releases carbon Dioxide (CO2) which causes global warming - is catapulting the planet towards disaster. However, it doesn’t have to be this way.

Global warming - the results
The effect of global warming: Argentina's
Upsala Glacier was once the biggest in South America. This image
and more on bbc.co.uk

Many dangerous technologies and substances can be replaced. For example, instead of burning fossil fuels, renewable sources of energy can be used, such as wind, solar or geothermal power. Petrochemical based plastics, which are not biodegradable, can be replaced by starch-based plastics (which safely disintegrate if left outside in a couple of weeks); palm oil can be used to replace diesel, etc.. Dangerous technologies must be replaced with sustainable ones. Wasteful practices must be ended such as the use of disposable containers as opposed to recyclable ones, and importantly the production of far more goods than can actually be used. Living in harmony with the Earth does not mean that we in the West will have to accept a lower standard of living, although the excesses of the ultra-rich are unsustainable.

Rather than on ordinary people in relatively wealthy countries, the real blame for the environmental crisis must be laid at the door of capitalism and the State, and the society that these forces have created.

Capitalism
Capitalism is an enormously wasteful system of production, which is geared towards competition in the market, and to making profits. Under capitalism, the needs of the working class are not met, a false sort of "over- production" takes place, and pollution is endemic.4

Huge amounts of goods are built to break as soon as possible in order to keep sales up (built-in obsolescence) and a large number of useless or inefficient goods are promoted and sold by means of high pressure advertising, and often with the aid of government policy (such as private cars in place of large-scale public transport). Furthermore, this advertising pressures us to dispose of useful items which are no longer “cool” and purchase new ones.

We must not make the mistake of assuming that all goods produced under capitalism are actually consumed by ordinary people. Often the bosses produce more of a given product than can be sold on the market, and this can lead to a price collapse and a recession. The bosses' solution is to destroy or stockpile the "extra" goods, rather than distribute them to those who need them (which would cut into profits). In 1991 there were 200 million tons of grain worldwide which were hoarded to preserve price levels. Three million tons could have eliminated famine in Africa that year – and now the situation is still no different.

It also costs money and cuts into potential profits to install safety equipment and monitor the use of dangerous materials. It is more profitable for the capitalists to shift these costs (sometimes called "externalities") onto the consumer in the form of pollution.

We noted above that there are many environmentally-friendly technologies that can replace environmentally destructive ones. Many of these technologies and patents have been bought up and suppressed by vested capitalist interests – particularly big oil companies and renewable energies - that do not want technological changes that will threaten their profits.5

The state
The state, props up the capitalist system, and while it is largely powerless to alleviate environmental destruction it in itself is also a major cause of ecological degradation, funding huge environmentally destructive projects such as dam buildings or weapons manufacture and testing.

The state is a structure created to allow the minority of bosses and rulers to dominate and exploit us, the workers. The state will not willingly enforce strong environmental protection laws against the bosses because it does not want to cut into the profits of the bosses and into its own tax revenue.
In addition, the rulers of the state are afraid that strong environmental laws will chase away investors (e.g. in 1992, capitalists in Holland were able to block a proposed tax on carbon pollution by threatening to relocate to other countries).6

We reject the idea that the environment can be saved by means of the state, or by electing a Green Party. Green Parties always talk radical when in opposition, such as in the UK, but act the same as other parties when in power, as can be seen in Belgium, and also Germany where the government of which the Greens were a part backed nuclear waste transports and mobilised 20,000 police against protesting residents. See our manifesto's introduction for more reasons we believe the government can not help solve these problems, and also our criticism of the UK Green Party.

Class
At a general level, it is clear that the environmental crisis affects everybody, and threatens the survival of the human race as a whole.

However, even though the environmental crisis is a global threat, it is the urban and rural working class that is most severely affected by the various environmental problems.7 It is the working class that has to take the dangerous jobs that cause environmental degradation.

Pollution pays

Profitable - reducing pollution is a pricey business, not in the interests of corporations in competition

While in the long-term a global environmental crisis would obviously affect everyone, it is not true that everybody shares an immediate interest in fighting against the environmental crisis: the bosses and the State benefit from the processes that harm the environment.8 Only workers and the poor have a direct interest right now in fighting for a clean environment.

Corporations engage in practices which destroy the environment as they need to make the maximum profit possible. Apart from the legal obligation to do so on many companies, the capitalist system enforces perpetual destruction by the imperative it creates – that corporations must grow or die. If a chemical company, say, instead of cheaply dumping waste at sea began to filter and purify all its waste – thus protecting the environment – it would lose valuable profit and thus would be either go bust or be bought up by a more ruthless competitor. Thus the institutional nature of capital makes individual corporations powerless to help, even if they wanted to (which of course they rarely do).

How can the problem be solved?
Mass action and a new society based on co-operation rather than profit are ultimately the only real ways to stop the environmental crisis.

The environmental crisis was generated by capitalism and the State, and can only be dealt with by challenging the power of these forces. We believe that only mass organising and mass grassroots action, as opposed to elections and lobbying, are effective methods of struggle. Read more on why we support grassroots action...

Because of the manner in which capitalism and the State by their very nature generate environmental destruction it is necessary in the long term to overthrow these structures and create a society based on real freedom and production and distribution on the basis of need, not profit. It is this kind of society that we would call "libertarian communist”, or “anarchist".

In addition, the working class is the source of all social wealth and is thus able, by action at the point of production, to wield a powerful weapon against the bosses and the rulers. We believe that our power as workers must be brought to bear in the struggle to halt the environmental crisis.

Because a large proportion of environmental damage takes place at the point of production and because the workers and our communities are the main victims of this pollution , "[t]rade union struggles for health and safety constitute the first line of defence for an embattled environment".9

The working class, organised in workplace resistance groups (such as syndicalist unions or rank-and-file groups), allied with communities struggling against environmental abuses can go a long way in stopping the State/capitalist onslaught against the planet. This sort of mass organising by the productive working class will do far more to stop the bosses than the small-scale guerrilla and obstruction tactics favoured by groups such as Earth First!, such as sabotaging bulldozers.10

A libertarian communist society will help the environment in three ways. First, the capitalist/state system that was the main cause of environmental problems, a system oriented to profit and power, will be replaced by a society based on need-satisfaction and grassroots democracy. Secondly, the excessive levels of consumption by the ultra-rich will be eliminated altogether, as will the idea that happiness can only be gained by buying more and more useless commodities.11 Finally, the workers will be able to install (and further develop) the ecologically sustainable technologies that the bosses currently suppress.12

Practical activity
General
Our role as libertarian communists is first and foremost to spread the ideas of workers’ self-organisation as far and wide as possible. We are in favour of helping people organise ourselves, and increase our confidence in our own decision-making capacity.

A crucial part of our work is to link a criticism of the present society with a vision of how society could be organised to benefit everyone. We support all progressive struggles, for their aims, for the confidence that campaigning gives people, and because it is in struggle that ideas are spread.

We always try to relate our ideas to the day-to-day needs and struggles of our class. We are opposed to an abstract form of environmentalism that does not link itself to the class struggle.

Logging workers

A solution? Workers in environmentally destructive industries have to be organised, to force the introduction of green practices.

Everyday

  • Call for workers in polluting factories to enforce safety rules and monitor pollution. Support actions by workers and the local community to stop/reduce pollution. Where factories cannot be made safe we can demand that they be closed but that their workers get employed at the same pay levels and skill in the local area.
  • Get involved in community struggles against environmental destruction such as the construction of new bypasses and roads, polluting factories and fossil fuel power plants, and argue for direct action.
  • Support wilderness preservation in the form of nature reserves, but, recognising that such reserves have often been set up at the expense of local communities, and the resentment this creates, call for these communities to retain access to some grazing, dry wood, and other resources. Demand that local communities receive cut from gate takings. Help organise workers at these facilities.
  • Oppose all testing of atomic, biological and chemical weapons in all circumstances and support blacking of goods and services as well as other direct action to halt these tests.
  • Call for strike action against companies' strip mining forests to force them to reforest and manage extraction. Support unionisation of workers in these industries
  • Call on unions to fund their own environmental monitoring section answerable to the workers and community affected. Call on workers to publicise and organise action against industries that expose workers and the community at large to toxic substances, pollution etc.
  • Within workplaces also demand industry use recycled products where possible and find alternatives for products or by-products that harm the environment. This should be backed by industrial action.13
  • Try to build solid organisation in workplaces and communities generally to build a grassroots counter-power to challenge the bosses in the here and now and eventually replace capitalism and the state with a free federation of directly democratic community and workplace councils.
    See our Organise section for tips on all these activities.

    Libcom summary
    1. The Earth is facing a serious environmental crisis with potentially catastrophic results.

    2. The environmental crisis has been created by the twin institutions of capitalism and the State.

    3. The working class has a direct interest in fighting to halt the environmental crisis as it the main victim of this crisis. By contrast the capitalist class profits from the crisis, and capitalist businesses are forced to continually expand and destroy the environment since if they did not, profits would fall and they would be bought up or go bust.

    4. Mass action against the capitalists and the State is the only effective way to fight the environmental crisis in the short-term.

    5. The only effective long-term solution to the crisis is the replacement of capitalism and the State by a society where production is organised not for profit, but democratically in the interests of all people and the planet – by a libertarian communist or anarchist society.

    6. General workplace and community organisation will play a central role in fighting and winning the battle to end the environmental crisis, and its causes.

    Edited and altered by libcom from an article by Zabalaza Books and the Bikisha Media Collective, 2005. Last reviewed/updated October 2006.

    Footnotes

    • 1. 2000 UK figure: UK 32,652 - EU Commission report - http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4283295.stm
    • 2. Cooper, Dave, (1991) "From Soil Erosion to Sustainability: land use in South Africa," in Cock, Jacklyn and Eddie Koch (editors), (1991), Going Green: People, Politics And The Environment In South Africa. Cape Town. Oxford University Press. p177.
    • 3. Purchase, Graham (1993), "Rethinking the Fall of State-Communism", in Rebel Worker, volume 12, no 9 (108) pp15-16. The examples of environmentally-friendly technologies come from Purchase, (1993), pp15-6 and Graham Purchase, (1991), Anarchist Organisation: Suggestions and Possibilities. Sydney. Black Swan. pp3-5, 21-3.
    • 4. This section is based on McLoughlin (1992); Class War (1992), pp30-1; and Lekachman and van Loon, (1981), pp62-4.
    • 5. McLoughlin (1992); Purchase (1991), p4.
    • 6. Weekly Mail (22-8 May 1992) p34 for this and other examples.
    • 7. Crompton, Rod and Alec Erwin, (1991), "Reds And Greens: Labour And The Environment," in Cock, Jacklyn and Eddie Koch, 1991, Going Green. Oxford University Press. Cape Town. p80; Chemical Workers Industrial Union (1991), "The Fight for Health and Safety", in Ramphele, Mamphela (editor), 1991, Restoring the Land. London. Panos Institute. p80; also Koch and Hartford cited in Cock (1991a) p14. For similar arguments for the USA, see J. Baugh, (1991), "African- Americans and the Environment: A Review Essay," in Policy Studies Journal, vol. 19, no. 2, p194; Morrison, D.E. and R.E. Dunlap (1986), "Environmentalism And Elitism: A Conceptual And Empirical Analysis," in Environmental Management, vol. 10, no. 5, pp586; van Liere, K.D. and R.E. Dunlap, (1980), "The Social Bases of Environmental Concern: A Review Of Hypotheses, Explanations And Empirical Evidence," in Public Opinion Quarterly, vol. 44, no. 2. pp183-4, 189-90. Cf. to Lowe, P. and J. Goyder, (1983), Environmental Groups in Politics. George Allen and Unwin. London. pp14-5; McCloughlin (1992).
    • 8. see also A. Dobson, (1990), Green Political Theory: An Introduction. Unwin. London. pp152-3.
    • 9. Crompton and Erwin (1991) p80; also Chemical Workers Industrial Union (1991); McDonald (1994).
    • 10. Bill Meyers. "Ecology and Anarcho-syndicalism", Ideas and Action; see Anon. You Can't Blow Up A Social Relationship: The Anarchist Case Against Terrorism for a detailed examination of the case for mass organising and actions instead of small- scale guerrilla and terrorist approaches.
    • 11. see Bill Meyers. "Ecology and Anarcho-syndicalism"
    • 12. Mark McGuire, (1993), "Book Review Corner", Rebel Worker, vol. 12, no. 6 (108)). p12.
    • 13. For an example of workers in a damaging industry attempting to convert it to be socially useful, read our history of the Lucas Aerospace struggle for useful work - http://libcom.org/history/articles/lucas-aerospace-fight/index.php
  • Fascism

    This article outlines what fascism is, how it is growing in the 21st Century United Kingdom, how it has nothing to offer working people and how we can combat it.

    This article will outline what fascism is, how it is growing in 21st Century Britain and how it has nothing to offer working people, and how we can combat it.

    What is fascism?

    As much as the term is bandied about to refer to anything from the behaviour of a strict teacher to the “humour” of Bernard Manning, fascism is quite a specific set of ideas and actions.

    Where does it come from?
    Fascism is a very right wing, fiercely nationalist, totalitarian ideology which originated in Italy in the early 20th Century to crush the powerful workers’ movement which was pushing up wages and threatening revolution. Led by Benito Mussolini, they were funded by various big businesses, such as Fiat and Pirelli, to smash picket lines and attack left-wing organisers.

    Italian fascism’s counterpart in Germany – Nazism – like most fascists today used racism to further its aims. Again to combat a powerful working class movement the Nazis attempted to direct public anger at the problems caused by capitalism (mass unemployment, poverty, etc.) onto a racial group – the Jews. To undercut the widespread support for the communists, socialists and anarchists the Nazis used anti-capitalist rhetoric against Jews, portraying them as money-grubbing capitalists, when in fact the vast majority of Jews were working class. Like many fascist groups today, they claimed they would initiate a left-wing economic programme with good welfare and high wages – the “socialism” in national socialism. The Nazi leadership had no intention of putting this propoganda into practice though. As soon as the Nazi Party came into power it violently destroyed all progressive working class organisations. The left-wing of the Party - always unacceptable to German business leaders - was then disposed of in the Night of the Long Knives, having served its purpose of aiding in the destruction of the unions and other working class groups. The first to be sent to the concentration camps were not the Jews who they had blamed for all Germany’s problems, but communists and trade unionists. Read about the Nazis' crushing of the anarchist trade union...

    The Holocaust

    Never again. Fascism doesn't begin with the gas chambers, but that's where it ends.

    Fascism in Britain today
    The main far-right political party in the UK is the British National Party (BNP). Though only a tiny grouplet in the 80s, under the leadership of Nick Griffin they have grown hugely, last year winning over 800,000 votes in the European elections, and managing to win a few councils seats in Northern England. Though still a very small organisation, and mostly just a protest vote party, their success should not be ignored.

    It is important to stress here that their political programme is not fascist. In their propaganda, they present themselves as an economically left-wing party which is highly authoritarian and pro law-and-order. They claim to not be a racist party, though their white-only membership rule obviously contradicts that.

    That they are racist, therefore, is beyond question, and that they are bigoted in other ways – for example against gays and lesbians whom they denounce as “perverts” or “creatures” – in indisputable. However the BNP are adamant that they are not fascist, and in fact often denounce the “fascist left” for opposing them.

    Of course, politicians are always economical with the truth, and none more so than fascist politicians. Like the left-wing pretences of the German Nazis – who called themselves the National Socialist German Workers' Party - the BNP is attempting to build a respectable image of itself as a normal political party and cover up its genocidal and fascist aims in order to win widespread support. It is, quite simply, lying to everyone about its true nature.

    BNP leader Nick Griffin - Cambridge graduate, rich immigrant to Wales, and fascist. Says the Holocaust "tale is a mixture of Allied wartime propaganda, extremely profitable lie, and latter-day witch-hysteria." (Carlisle Two Defence Fund Bulletin)

    How do we know that this really is the case, that they really haven’t changed? Quite simply because the Party leadership has not changed significantly since the BNP was the radical ultra-fascist offshoot of the more “moderate” National Front. The BNP leadership is replete with hardcore Nazi sympathisers, and convicted white supremacist terrorists – its leader Nick Griffin, for example, has been a member of most pro-Nazi groups in the UK, and BNP number two, Tony Lecomber was imprisoned for three years in 1986 for a nail bomb attack on a South London office. He was also convicted of making grenades, detonators and bombs and later for assaulting a Jewish teacher.

    The BNP were forced to abandon the traditional fascist strategy of “controlling the streets” - a tactic based on marching, looking intimidating and carrying out violent attacks within strongholds on working class, left wing or other progressive organisations, ethnic minorities and gays. They were prevented from doing this largely by Anti-Fascist Action, a militant anti-fascist organisation which confronted the far right whenever they took to the streets. Since then, they have attempted to present themselves as a respectable, non-violent political party which will stand up for the “decent, silent majority”.

    Over most of the UK this strategy has had very little success – people still know of them as a bunch of Nazi thugs – but in certain areas where they have devoted their efforts to long-term community organising they have developed solid bases of support. Bradford, Keighley and Burnley all have BNP councillors and in these towns the BNP is the third largest party. They have achieved this by appearing to attempt to deal with real problems felt by poor working class people in these communities who are ignored by the traditional parties. The BNP has also been given a massive boost by the anti-immigrant hysteria generated by the mainstream media, particularly The Daily Mail , The Sun and The Express. These media enterprises are owned by huge corporations and opportunistic politicians who happily use the small number of asylum seekers as a scapegoat for all the problems caused by capitalism – particularly housing, unemployment, poverty and poor healthcare.

    Newscorp, Rupert Murdoch’s company which runs The Sun, The Times, Sky and much of the rest of the British media dodged £89million in UK corporation tax in 1998, after making £1.4bn worldwide profits – so it’s no wonder its media outlets try to blame scrounging asylum seekers on £39 a week benefits for draining public money.[1]

    Homelessness - landlords and profit-driven government policy, not asylum seekers, are to blame for the housing crisis.

    While significant numbers of working class people are turning to the BNP in some areas, the BNP offers working people nothing. Indeed, the BNP leadership even believe the working class to be genetically inferior to the rich[2]. They oppose workers organising to win better wages and conditions, claiming trade unions to be Soviet-paedophile plots[3], and refuse to blame capitalism and the rich for any problems, instead blaming the poorest and most marginalised in society. For the problem of 100,000 homeless households[4] in Britain, they do not blame the wealthy landlords who leave 790,000 properties empty – instead they blame the 60,000 or so asylum seekers a year who mostly live in squalor in cramped conditions. Instead of blaming the corporations who throw thousands out of work they denounce those left jobless and poor as naturally inferior to their bosses[5]. Instead of blaming the disintegrating health service on years of privatisation and under-finding, they blame immigrants – without whom the NHS would collapse. In London, for example, people born overseas make up 47% of nurses and 23% of all doctors.[6]

    Previously in Britain many workers turned to the trade union movement and the Left to try to improve their lot as a class, irrespective of race and nationality. By sticking together, and practicing solidarity and direct action – particularly in the form of strikes and sympathy strikes, workers up to the late 1970s won big increases in pay and quality of life together. However, bosses and the Thatcher government in the 1980s led an all-out assault on working class power, and crushed the trade union movement in Britain in the Miners’ strike and Wapping printers’ strike in 1984-5. Meanwhile workers were betrayed by the official Left - in the centre by Labour and the TUC and in on the extremes by Arthur Scargill and the Leninists. Labour refused to back the workers in these crucial times, and when in power bowed to the bosses’ pressure[7] and then later abandoned any pretence of standing up for workers. The Trades Union Congress – the central trade union body in the UK – refused to call a general strike or back serious action during either strike, dooming them to failure. Scargill was the leader of the National Union of Mineworkers during the great Strike, during which he falsely led miners to believe they could win by going it alone at a time when the government were determined to smash the miners, whose only real hope was that other workers would support them.

    This destruction of the possibility of collective class advancement has led many workers to turn instead against each other in an effort to get ahead. From an explosion in crime and unemployment, drug abuse and racism, an atmosphere conducive to the growth of the far-right was created. With the trade union movement in ruins, and the Left abandoning the working class for moralising student-based campaigning on third world issues, many workers saw the BNP fill the vacuum as the only viable political force with was attempting to address their concerns – on housing, crime and public services.

    If the BNP ever did reach power its fascist leadership could drop their mask of respectability and use state power the way ever fascist regime does – enslaving the population, destroying independent workers’ organisation and driving down wages and conditions to make huge profits for “The Nation” (read – the ultra-rich of the nation). With a little ethnic cleansing on the side of course.

    Even short of seizing state power the dangers of the success of the BNP, or any other fascist party, are as follows. Firstly, success breeds success – the more votes and councillors the BNP gets the more it looks like an effective alternative to the mainstream political parties and the more socially acceptable far-right and racist views become. Secondly, success of fascist parties presses the mainstream parties to adopt the tone, rhetoric and policies of the far right as the political agenda shifts to the right. Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative Party decimated the large National Front in the late 70s and early 80s by stealing its thunder and shifting further right. Thirdly, in areas with elected BNP officials or strong far-right votes, hardcore fascists feel powerful and escalate physical attacks on groups like ethnic minorities, gays, trade unionists and human rights campaigners. In Tower Hamlets, East London when a BNP councillor was elected in 1993, racist attacks surged 300% [8]. Fourthly of course if enough fascists are elected into positions of power they can begin passing damaging regressive legislation aimed against workers, civil liberties, minority groups and in favour of big business and greater state power.

    How can we oppose it?

    All mainstream “anti-racists” from the government to groups like Unite Against Fascism[9] say is to vote against the BNP. This means telling people to vote for the very parties which cause and perpetuate the problems which drive people into the arms of the far right in the first place. Read more about why social change via political parties is ineffective...

    Instead, we propose a three-pronged strategy to combat the growth of fascism in Britain: organisational, political and physical

    Organisational opposition

    This is the first and by far the most important way of stopping the growth of the BNP. As explained above the growth of the far-right is due to problems related to poverty, caused by capitalism. These are predominantly unemployment, poor housing and public services, and low wages. They have been filling the space left by the destruction of the unions 1980s stopping collective advancement of workers, and the Left abandoning the domestic working class in favour of moral crusades about faraway places.

    Racism doesn't help us. Organising as a class does - as striking Gate Gourmet workers show us in 2005.

    Instead of being dragged into the dead-end road of nationalist and racialist politics, we need to re-develop ways of improving our lives together, as a united working class. We need to recognise that our problems are not caused by our fellow workers of another skin tone but by the bosses who exploit us and exploit poor illegal immigrants, the landlords who leave properties empty, then rake huge profits from housing asylum seekers and other homeless people in appalling temporary accommodation, and the governments who sell off our public services, and waste our money and lives on wars to benefit huge corporations.

    We need to come together to form re-build workplace organisation based on solidarity, and direct action to win better wages and conditions, and stop the super-exploitation of foreign workers which keeps all of our wages down[10]. Workers in the public sector, with outside support can help combat the privatisation of our services which slashes jobs and service quality. Read more about workplace organising...

    In our communities we need to try to begin to stick together against anti-social criminals which is ignored by the police, while fighting for provision of better services for our youth[11]. Council tenants can oppose the sell-off of their homes into the private sector[12], and others can build tenants’ unions to take action such as rent strikes against bad landlords[13]. Homeless people can occupy building left derelict or empty by absentee landlords and turn them into homes[14]. Read more about community organising or housing...

    Political opposition
    A growing number of white working class people have been tricked by the BNP into believing that they have something to offer them. In fact for working people and our families the only thing fascists have to offer is tyranny and “freedom through work” – which is good for our bosses, but not for us.

    It is important to explain how they have nothing to offer us, and to combat the lies they spread in order to win support. These lies include their left-wing pretences in their policy documents, and statements in their propaganda and party political broadcasts on subjects such as trade unions, ethnic minorities, crime, Aids and even the BBC!

    Their strict law-and-order stance needs to be compared and contrasted with their leadership’s violent terrorist and criminal pasts (and present![15]), and their claims to no longer be fascist must be countered by exposing the leaderships’ hidden politics.

    Physical opposition
    Finally, fascism as an ideology is based on violence. The violent destruction of all those individuals and organisations who do not give their all to the “fatherland”. These include people who don’t wish to work incredibly long hours for very little pay, those who believe in democracy, or human rights, or equality, and can include any other perceived “inferior” people, such as the disabled, mentally ill, homosexuals or ethnic minorities.

    With fascists, there is no question as to whether they will be violent or not. They will begin acts of violence as soon as they feel powerful enough to do so. In Britain in the 1970s they were powerful, and carried out violence across the country, even including attacking old people in small human rights meetings[16]. To know they still have the same aims now, all you have to do is look at Redwatch, a UK fascist hitlist site with pictures, names and addresses of “traitors”: trade unionists, anti-racists and left-wingers, including children. As shown in Italy, Spain and Germany once they have conquered state power, it is too late to physically oppose them, since with the might of the armed forces, the police and the prison system they are practically invincible.

    So how can they be fought? Adolph Hitler, while in power, explained:
    “Only one thing could have stopped our movement. If our adversaries had understood its principle, and from the first day had smashed with the utmost brutality the nucleus of our new movement. "

    At the moment the far right in Britain is in this nucleus stage. The fascists in the 1970s and 80s were physically smashed off the streets by militant organisation Anti-Fascist Action (AFA), with the once-might National Front reduced from 20,000 members to the pathetic 30-60 it is today.

    Thousands of pounds of damage inflicted on BNP leaders' cars, smashed outside an organising meeting in 2005

    Fascism can only grow while fascists are free to organise – to have a website, to have meetings and demonstrations, and to produce and distribute propaganda. Without this they cannot be heard, and so cannot grow. Preventing them speaking is not nice, but it must be done if they are to be prevented from gaining support by their deception.[17]

    Fascists use public demonstrations to look and feel powerful. Some young people join fascist groups because of their gang-like “hard man” image, but this quickly evaporates if they are attacked. Many fascists are simply petty bullies, who will not keep attending fascist events if anyone stands up to them. This is born out by the rapidly dwindling numbers of active fascists in areas where they were targeted by AFA in the 80s and 90s[18]. Websites can also be hacked[19], and fascist meetings can be trashed[20]. The activities of AFA largely drove the far right underground, and it is thanks to them that fascists still can rarely have public meetings anywhere in the UK. We need to make sure this remain so. Workers can – and have - refuse to produce, or distribute their propaganda[21].

    Some people argue that now the BNP have temporarily abandoned the “controlling the streets” strategy that physically targeting them is now useless. While it is true that attacking an elected BNP official in an area where they have some public support might be counter-productive, we believe that elsewhere they are even more vulnerable to physical pressure due to their need for respectability. The BNP leadership knows it must lose its association with violence and thuggery if it is to ever become widely popular. It must, therefore, avoid any involvement in street fights. Some people have worried that attacking BNP organisers might win them more public sympathy, but the BNP is so embarrassed by involvement in violence that it has covered up any news of being attacked[22], and the fact remains that your average fascist organiser will only take so much before they give up the fight – or ponder as to why the very people they are supposed to represent (the white working class) hate them so much as to fight them wherever they go that they change their minds[23].

    It must be stressed again at this stage that by far the most important way of fighting the far right is by dealing with the problems they thrive off on a class basis rather than a racial one. Physically confronting fascists is an activity only a minority of people can do due to its dangerous nature, and of course all violence is horrible, and even though necessary sometimes it should kept to the minimum possible.

    Libcom Summary
    1. Fascism is an ideology based on the destruction of organisations of the working class, which is often highly racist

    2. The BNP is Britain’s main far-right party, which has a secret fascist leadership with a façade of respectability

    3. The BNP is growing due to four main factors:
    ...a. The destruction of the trade unions
    ...b. The Left abandoning the domestic working class
    ...c. Problems caused by capitalism in Britain continue to worsen and mainstream parties are unable and unwilling to help, and the BNP claim that they will
    ...d. The corporate media have made a scapegoat of asylum seekers and immigrants for these problems

    4. The growth of the BNP is dangerous because then they reach a critical strength they will begin physical (and eventual legislative if in government) attacks on ethnic minorities, homosexuals, trade unionists and any left-wing or anti-racist campaigners. If they gain state power they will enslave the population and enact ethnic cleansing

    5. To stop the growth of fascism we need to
    ...a. Fill the vacuum left by the destruction of the unions, and organise to begin to solve our problems collectively as a class, sticking together regardless of race or nationality.
    ...b. Combat the BNP’s lies that they have anything to offer British working people, and expose their fascist core
    ...c. Physically confront them and prevent them organising on the ground or spreading their message.

    libcom, 2005

    Footnotes
    1. BBC E-cyclopedia, The Economist
    2. www.red-star-research.org.uk/rpm/AF/AF.html
    3. BNP “news” on website, 2004 (NB we do not link directly to any far-right websites)
    4. Shelter
    5. See 2
    6. Refugee Action
    7. See An Anarchist FAQ for more information about capital flight
    8. BLINK
    9 uaf.org.uk
    10. For example, the Dahl Jenson strike of 2004, or the Italian workers' movement in the 1970s. The Industrial Workers of the World also had much success in immigrant organising in the early 20th Century US.
    11. See Blackbird Leys Independent Working Class Association
    12. See Defend Council Housing; also the victorious anti-sell-off campaign in Camden
    13. See the Italian tenants’ movement in the 1970s.
    14. See squatters.org.uk or our Housing section for more information
    15. Some recent BNP crime headlines on libcom.org: BNP member caught smuggling illegal immigrants, BNP candidate guilty of dealing crack and heroin, BNP Member Jailed For Racist Attacks
    16. See No Retreat, by Dave Hann and Steve Tilzey, Milo Books
    17. To get involved in militant anti-fascism, contact Antifa
    18. See No Retreat, above
    19. The BNP site was taken down for weeks by hackers in 2005.
    20. Recent examples include: Nationalist Alliance meeting trashed, September 2005, BNP organising meeting bricked, March 2005
    21. In the 2004 Elections, postal workers refused to deliver BNP materials, BBC. In 2002 German television workers refused to broadcast fascist party the NPD’s election broadcasts.
    22. The BNP has covered up all recent examples of this occurring, such as the incident in footnote 20.
    23. See No Retreat, ibid. for examples.

    Health

    Our analysis of what is wrong with the UK health system and National Health Service, the reasons behind it, and what we as ordinary people can do about it.

    The British National Health Service is massively under-funded, overstretched and under-staffed. Over twenty years of Tory-initiated privatisation have wrecked the already-imperfect health system, leaving it bureaucratic and top heavy, and driven by government targets rather than the health of the population.

    What’s wrong with it?
    Institutional
    Much ill-health in Britain can be attributed to overcrowded or poorly maintained housing, insufficient or poor quality food, environmental pollution, bad sanitation, or stress and lack of exercise due to working and travelling patterns. The health service is only set up to deal with people when they've already fallen ill, not to prevent illness in the first place. Until these economic causes of ill-health are dealt with we will continue to have an over-stretched health service regardless of how much money is thrown at it.

    Privatisation
    Dirth NHS hospital sink

    Dirty hospitals - the result of putting profit before people.

    Overcrowding and lack of cleanliness in hospitals is part of the same problem. The “superbug” MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus) is currently responsible for 2 out of every 1000 deaths in NHS hospitals and 3 out of every 1000 deaths in NHS nursing homes. 100,000 people are infected and 5,000 people killed annually from Hospital Acquired Infections[1], more than are killed on Britain's roads[2]. It is generally accepted that this has been contributed to by the privatisation of cleaning services - putting the responsibility into the hands of private companies, ultimately responsible to their shareholders rather than the public. Labour-intensive services such as hospital cleaning can only be made more profitable by cutting wages, making staff work longer hours or simply reducing the numbers of cleaners. This has lead to a marked deterioration in the service, with numbers of cleaners slashed by 45% - from 100,000 in 1984 to just 55,000 today[3].

    Despite this, the majority of healthcare in the UK is still state-owned. This means that instead of private shareholders, the NHS is responsible to state bureaucracy, which is hardly akin to true public accountability. The use of targets (from waiting times to numbers treated) reduces the level of care given to each patient in favour of appearances of efficiency[4]. A patient is ejected from Casualty or a doctor’s surgery too soon, resulting in a larger knock-on cost as ailments go untreated or misdiagnosed. This leads to an almost autistic obsession with numbers as a way of selling the management system to voters, regardless of the actual effect on patient care.

    NHS beds

    Spare NHS beds - a rare site in an over-stretched, top-heavy service with two managers for every bed.

    Bureaucracy
    The centralised structure of the NHS, combined with its size (it is the third biggest employer in the world, after the Chinese People’s Army and the Indian Railway) result in massive inefficiency. For effective decisions to be made, information about changes on the ground must percolate through the entire structure to the top. The problem with this is that the sheer complexity of the system means that any models built by layers of management several levels removed from face-to-face patient care are necessarily incomplete.

    Working conditions
    Health workers are underpaid and over-worked. This has led to a very high turnover of staff, poorer quality work and high incidence of workplace injuries and other psychological disorders such as stress and depression. In the last year alone, 50,000 UK trained nurses left or retired with just over 20,000 recruits joining and another 12,000 coming in from abroad, leaving a shortfall of 18,000[5]. Pay for many, especially nurses is appalling, especially considering the long hours and years of necessary training. Much of nurses’ time is consumed with form-filling and red tape, which again takes time away from patient care.

    Social care
    There is a false distinctions between health care and “social care” for the elderly. Many families and pensioners have to be unnecessarily means-tested to the extent that thousands are forced to live in poverty because the government claims they can technically pay for treatment, disregarding the fact that so many of these families have to be able to have enough to live on after they have paid for the “care”. Social care workers are also poorly paid – much more so than NHS staff – but they should not feel morally obliged to work for minimal wages, as it is a job like any other.

    Pharmaceuticals
    The cost of medicine and equipment is spiralling due to profiteering pharmaceutical companies and the patent laws that support them. Drug corporations claim their prices are massively higher than the cost of manufacture[6] in order to recoup their Research and Development investment. In fact top U.S. drug companies spend 2.5 times more on advertising than R&D[7], and only 22 per cent of big pharmaceutical companies’ staff are employed in R&D, while 39 per cent are in marketing[8].

    Patent laws protect profits for the corporations, but kill millions of people who die from preventable diseases. When Brazil started ignoring patents and manufacturing generic (non-brand) drugs themselves, the price of anti-HIV cocktail therapy plummeted from $10,000 to only $300 a year, slashing the number of deaths from the illness[9]. We need to ignore these patent laws, protected by governments, as well.

    Class
    Ultimately we believe that class and capitalism are at the root of most of the problems. Capitalism is a society that is divided by class. The working class consists of all the people in this society who do not own property or a business we can make money from, and therefore have to sell our time and energy to a boss - we are forced to work. Our work is the basis of this society.

    Our interests are opposed to those of our bosses and the profit-making corporations we work for. Companies must always be more ruthless in making cuts and making a profit, for if they didn’t they would go bust or another company would take them over.

    Cuts in the numbers and wages of hospital cleaners and other staff, therefore, aids capital by increasing profit margins, yet it hurts the working class, who are treated in NHS hospitals and some of whom work in the NHS. Poor quality food in hospitals is good for business, since the cheaper the ingredients the greater the profits, but again harms the people who eat it. Likewise patents are great for protecting the revenues of pharmaceutical corporations, but bad for the millions of workers denied treatment as a result.

    The working class therefore has a direct interest in improving all aspects of the health service, where capital does not. It is within us, the working class, therefore that the possible solutions lie.

    How can the problems be solved?
    We believe that the biggest problems with the health service are things which we can all, as ordinary people, help improve. Privatisation, hospital closures, stressed and unrewarded staff and massive bureaucracy are all imposed by the current economic system – they are not inevitable.

    Ultimately we believe that, like all industries and services, the best people to run the NHS are the workers and users of that service. In the case of the NHS, this means the doctors, nurses and other health workers themselves should control the hospitals and care homes, in conjunction with patients rather than unaccountable bureaucrats and profit-driven corporations. Rather than central control decisions are much better made as close to the affected regions as possible - with full input from those affected by them. A decentralised, federalised service, controlled from the grassroots by councils of health workers and patients, and in genuinely public ownership would be far superior to the current system, both in terms of flexibility and accountability to the needs of patients. Far from being a pipedream, co-operative health services were commonplace in Britain before the advent of the NHS, and do exist and have existed in other parts of the world[10].

    What can we do practically?
    Health workers strike against privatisation

    Taking action - NHS workers in Dudley on strike against their transfer to a Private Finance Initiative involving the loss of 70 beds and 160 jobs.


    While this will not happen in the short term there is a lot that can be done to take more into the hands of the workers and patients. Decent pay, short working hours and good conditions ensure more effective, happier staff, will improve patient care and fill the workers’ shortfall. Unfortunately these are not reforms which will be handed down from above. Health workers can organise to demand better conditions, being prepared to take action, and other people and patients’ forums should support them. Health workers can take direct action which does not harm patients like a traditional strike might, such as good work strikes.

    Communities can organise to fight hospital closures in their areas, alongside patients’ groups and health workers.

    We believe that the key, therefore, is strengthening rank and file organisation of health workers, within the trade unions and without, and including contract, temporary and agency staff as well as permanent employees. We should also try to improve patients’ forums, and build links with health workers with regular meetings to discuss supporting one another and improving service. Read more about workplace organising...

    Those of us who are do not work or are not patients, we can organise in our communities to create organisations which can struggle alongside these groups, and improve other aspects of our local areas to build solidarity and confidence amongst ourselves. We can argue for organising and taking direct action in our own places of work to build a powerful movement of workers who can stick together to win demands for all of us. Read more about community organising...

    These organisations, based on true face-to-face democracy and self-organised direct action, in addition to improving our lives in the here and now, can be an embryonic new society. A society based on the equal co-operation and activity of all people – a libertarian communist society. A society where the social and economic causes of ill-health are greatly reduced, and services are provided according to need rather than ability to pay, and the current postcode lottery of resource provision. Libcom summary
    1. The NHS is being destroyed by cuts and privatisation started by the Tories and continued enthusiastically by Labour

    2. Bureaucracy and politically-motivated targets are hamstringing the service and damaging patient care

    3. The NHS is based on cure rather than prevention of illnesses in the first place – and much sickness is caused by poverty, poor diet and over-work

    4. The problems of the NHS are caused largely by capitalism – improving it is in the interests of the working class, but not business-owners

    5. It is important, therefore, to attempt to (re-)build a powerful workers’ movement which can win improvements in our conditions at work and in our communities

    6. In the health service itself we need to stand beside health workers to resist privatisation, and to help organise all workers in the healthcare industry and fight for better wages and conditions. We can try to build links between patients’ forums and workers, to argue for more self-management, better patient care and less bureaucracy

    7. Ultimately we believe the most effective way to run the NHS is as a publicly-owned service, run directly by its workers and patients. We can strive for that, as part of an entire co-operative libertarian communist society, where many of the root causes of much ill health are eradicated.

    By libcom
    with some information from an article by Colchester Solidarity Group


    Footnotes
    1. BBC News Online Monday, 7 March, 2005, 15:31 GMT
    2. Unison 12 January 2005
    3. The Observer, Monday, 10 January, 2005, Page 6
    ”The figures, compiled by UNISON, the UK's largest union after asking a parliamentary question, showed that there were 55,000 hospital cleaners, either NHS employees or people working in the hospitals for private cleaning contractors last year. In 1984, just before the private contracting began there were more than 100,000.
    A spokesman for British Health Secretary in 2003, John Reid, claimed that although the numbers of cuts were undisputed, the size of the NHS estate had reduced by 20 percent in the past two decades and so there was less physical space to clean. Even this is true, it still means massive staffing cuts of nearly 33% per unit of area.”
    4. For just one example, see Channel 4 News
    5. BBC news online Monday, 25 April, 2005
    6. For example, the cost of daily dose of patented vs generic fluconazole anti-fungal drug in June 2002 in Guatemala was $27.60 (Pfizer patent), and in Thailand was only 1% of that - $0.29 (Biolab generic).
    New Internationalist, June 2002
    7. Deborah Socolar and Alan Sager, ‘Pharmaceutical marketing and research spending: the evidence does not support PhRMA’s claims’, Boston University School of Public Health.
    8. Presentation before the World Health Organisation of the Indian Drug Manufacturers’ Association
    9. In Brazil, after the Government began producing generic ARVs, prices fell 82% and the price of the AIDS 'cocktail' therapy fell from $10,000 to $300 a year. As result AIDS deaths have fallen by half and the country saved $677 million treatment costs from 1997 to 2000.
    10. In Peckham, London, before Labour introduced the NHS after World War II there was a co-operative healthcare system. Also see The People’s Clinic: Italy, June 1971, where people suffering sub-standard care occupied an empty building an set up a volunteer, co-operative clinic.

    Articles to be written

    Articles on the following areas are planned for the manifesto. If you can help write any of these articles please contact us
    ▫ Work and the economy
    ▫ Wars and defence
    ▫ Public services
    -- Education
    -- Housing
    -- Fire service
    -- Welfare state, pensions etc.
    ▫ Crime, policing and anti-social behaviour
    ▫ Immigration, race and multiculturalism
    ▫ Women, men and sexism
    ▫ Advertising and the media