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Build up the maximum pressure for a general election

The British people certainly do not need either Johnson or Hunt – they need a chance to go to the polls and reject austerity, says BILL GREENSHIELDS of the People’s Assembly

WE don’t need a Tory leadership contest. We need a general election — an opportunity to elect an anti-austerity government and the chance to build a huge alliance inside and outside Parliament against the monopolies that currently exert economic and political power against the needs and the will of the people.

As the People’s Assembly made clear in its programme In Place of Austerity, it is the sinister and manipulative world of corporate power that provides the driving force of austerity in Britain and throughout the world.

And we know that whatever wing of the Tory Party finally comes out on top, none of them will ever acknowledge the fact that all of them exist to serve those interests — the billionaires, the tax dodgers, the off-shorers, the huge international monopoly corporation interests.

They are determined to protect their “rights” to shift capital and workers around the world to maximise profit at the expense of wages and the social wage of welfare states, and they use their international organisations — the World Bank, the IMF, the EU, Nafta and many others — to manipulate us worldwide, and undermine governments and whole nations if they don’t conform. The People’s Assembly opposes austerity — whatever its origins.

With another world economic crisis on the way, another round of fierce austerity against working-class people is on the cards — and the monopoly corporations and their governments are also realigning themselves to fight each other for dominance. 

The international tensions are showing through trade wars, economic sanctions and high-stakes threats and ultimatums and military build-up to back them up. 

In all this, these big business and finance interests are determined to squash any and every sign of resistance. That’s why they hate our anti-austerity movement and any party political manifestation that may spring from or reflect our movement. 

The extreme and cruel pressure to conform that was piled onto Syriza in Greece, onto Portugal and others, the recent EU blocking of the Italian government investment and growth budget — these are among the indications of what’s to come.

Here in Britain the pressure is enormous on the Labour leadership to move away from its anti-austerity manifesto — for public ownership and directed investment in industry and services. 

Let’s make no mistake: this is the cause of the attacks, smears, distortions and lies — anything to undermine the chance of a Corbyn government

It is against this background that the Tory Party circus of selecting Boris Johnson or Jeremy Hunt for coronation as leader and therefore prime minister is taking place.  

The British people certainly do not need either Johnson or Hunt. Each is equally absurd and equally dangerous in their own way. Neither has any interest in the wellbeing of working-class people. Each is wedded to the power of the monopoly corporations.

So let’s build the resistance today. Link up your local People’s Assembly with your local trades union council — it’s both People’s Assembly and TUC policy for PA reps to take full part in trades councils, combining community militancy with trade union strength.

Organise a public meeting or street rally as part of the People’s Assembly’s national speaking tour Britain is Broken — We Can’t Afford The Tories — General Election Now.

On July 22, the day the new Tory PM is announced, rally, march, hold press conferences, do banner drops, hit the social media — take your own forms of direct action in villages, towns and cities throughout Britain for a general election.

On August 1, unite your community around Unite Community’s day of action against universal credit — a system which epitomises in every way the cruelty and class war nature of austerity.

On September 29 gather in Manchester where the Tories are in conference at the demonstration organised by People’s Assembly and the trade union movement. General election — now.

Bill Greenshields is a member of the People’s Assembly national committee.

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