The Socialist Equality Party urges workers, young people and retirees to vote “1” for our candidates in the Senate in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, and in the lower house electorates of Blaxland and Grayndler in Sydney, and Wills in Melbourne.
A vote for the SEP is a vote for the only party that fights to end the source of social inequality, exploitation and war—the capitalist profit system. It is a vote for the building of a mass political movement that unifies workers and young people in Australia with their counterparts around the world, in the common struggle for workers’ governments that will implement far-reaching socialist policies in the interests of the international working class.
The outcome of the election is uncertain due to the alienation of millions of people from the two-party system dominated by Labor and the Coalition. Such is the degree of anger that nothing can be ruled out, including a hung parliament in which neither party holds a majority.
The dysfunction of the official political system in Australia mirrors international developments. Immense instability is engulfing the United Kingdom and the European Union following the June 23 Brexit referendum.
Brexit has reinforced what many people already sense: the world is in the grip of a historic crisis that demands an international perspective to resolve. Nationalism and a social order that only benefits a handful of the population—with just 62 billionaires owning more wealth than 3.5 billion people—offers the majority of humanity no future.
Capitalism, and the nation-state system in which it is rooted, has broken down due to its inherent contradictions. The European Union, a mechanism established to try to contain the national antagonisms that led to two world wars, is collapsing. Endless US-led wars ravage the Middle East and have spread into Africa. The greatest refugee crisis exists since World War II, with over 65 million people now displaced. Tensions are escalating as a result of the provocative actions by US imperialism and its allies, including Australia, against nuclear-armed China and Russia.
Behind the growth of geopolitical conflicts lies the worsening state of world economy, which remains mired in slump nearly eight years after the 2008 financial crisis and is now descending into depression-like conditions. The subordination of the world’s productive forces to the accumulation of profit by a tiny minority of capitalist oligarchs has led to a social disaster and staggering inequality. The working class of every country faces mass unemployment, plummeting living standards and unprecedented social problems.
The real state of world economy and world politics has barely been spoken about by the pro-capitalist parties contesting the election: from the Liberal-National Coalition, Labor and the Greens, through to the various right-wing and anti-immigrant formations and single-issue protest parties. They do not discuss the situation that faces the population because they have no progressive solutions.
What is clear, however, is that the next government, whatever combination of parties forms it, will impose a reactionary agenda of militarism and austerity on the working class.
Under Labor and Coalition governments, Australia has given unconditional support to the US “pivot” to Asia, which consists of a systematic military build-up in the region to prepare for a confrontation and war with China. During the election, both major parties gave commitments to escalate Australian involvement in US provocations against China, particularly over Beijing’s territorial claims in the South China Sea.
The mass media and every other party, including the Greens and the misnamed Socialist Alliance, have maintained a conspiracy of silence on the rapidly rising tensions in Asia. The entire official establishment is well aware that a broad debate on the danger of war would generate mass anti-war sentiment and opposition to the US-Australia alliance.
On the economic front, the international credit agencies and financial conglomerates are insisting the next government must make massive cutbacks to social spending to reduce the budget deficit.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and the Coalition, while denying they will slash social spending, have repeatedly assured the financial markets they will impose policies that force Australia to “live within our means”—a euphemism for savage austerity. For all Labor’s cynical rhetoric about defending health and education, Bill Shorten and Labor shadow treasurer Chris Bowen have publicly committed to over $40 billion in austerity cuts over the next four years. Behind-the-scenes, Labor will have given the financiers the same guarantees as the Coalition.
Labor and the Greens are not a “lesser evil” to the Coalition parties, as the trade unions and fake left formations like Socialist Alliance and Socialist Alternative claim. The policies of a Labor government, or a Labor-Green coalition, will be dictated by the banks and big business and by their commitment to the US alliance.
The various nationalist parties, such as those of Nick Xenophon, Jacqui Lambie and Glen Lazarus, are not an alternative for the working class. Along with sections of the trade union movement, they are promoting xenophobia and trying to blame the social crisis on immigrants and refugees, or on “unfair” economic competition from other countries. Their policies, which hark back to the dog-eat-dog nationalism, militarism and fascism of the 1930s, lead in only one direction: trade war and war.
The working class is an international class. Workers face the same fundamental problems in every country, regardless of their ethnicity, religion or gender. The Socialist Equality Party is the only party that fights for the socialist reorganisation of society in Australia and internationally to end war and meet the social rights of the working class—to full-time, well-paying employment; free public health and education at all levels; a dignified retirement; and high-quality and affordable housing. We reject the capitalists’ demands that workers and young people pay for their crisis.
We advocate socialist policies. A vote for the SEP is a vote for the expropriation of the banks and major corporations, placing them in public ownership and under democratic control by a workers’ government. It is a vote for a radical redistribution of wealth to finance a massive program of public works to provide jobs, develop much-needed social infrastructure and transition to the clean energy economy necessary to avert the danger of catastrophic climate change.
On July 2, vote “1” for the Socialist Equality Party, the Australian section of the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI). If you agree with our perspective, then take the next step and apply to join our party and build the ICFI as the new leadership of the international working class.
Click here to download the Socialist Equality Party How-To-Vote cards for the Senate in NSW, Queensland and Victoria and for the seats of Blaxland, Grayndler and Wills.
Authorised by James Cogan, Shop 6, 212 South Terrace, Bankstown Plaza, Bankstown, NSW 2200.