Basic socialism

What causes low wages - Unequal power, unequal pay

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During the year a spate of reports have 'discovered' what a lot of workers already know - that equal pay for equal work just doesn't exist. Although legal victories and a raft of employment equality legislation have made some dents, the fact remains that discrimination on the grounds of gender, ethnicity and age (to name just a few) persists and is widespread. It seems obvious to ask: why?

Why be a revolutionary

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I may not have any chains around my feet, but still, I am not free. In modern society - capitalism - our bosses and leaders have invented new methods to chain us. According to the propaganda we are supposed to live in a free, democratic society, yet all of us experience limitations in our lives. Everyday more of us are being flung on the dole, families are being thrown out on the streets, our pay packets are shrinking and prices keep going up. Politicians care about little else except their popularity. In truth, we all know that this free, democratic society doesn't exist on the streets where we live.

Socialism and Freedom

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WHAT IS IT that most ordinary people want in life? Is it something unreal or utopian? No. The goals which most people have are quite modest. A good standard of living and freedom to live our lives the way we want to. Instead we have to put with unemployment, low pay, insecure employment, drudgery. We are pushed around, bullied or dominated by bosses and faceless bureaucrats. All of this to make a small group of people, the ruling class, wealthy beyond most peoples' wildest dreams.

Evolution or Revolution?

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THE IDEA OF evolution has always been important to socialists. Except for a handful of utopians most have thought of socialism in terms of human progress and improvment. This idea was given a scientific basis in the nineteenth century by socialists who saw society as evolving through stages towards socialism (not that it would stop here socialism would just be the end of pre-history real history could then begin.) Most socialists believed that the struggle towards socialism was a striving of people to develop and move forward.

Did Bakunin advocate secret dictatorship?

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Bakunin is sometimes accused of being in favour of dictatorship. Indeed he often talks about secret dictatorships. However if you read what he actually said in detail it is quite obvious that what he was talking about was the classic anarchist position of a leadership of ideas.

Anarchism Today

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AT THE MOMENT the "Socialist Movement" has all but collapsed. Despite the fact that high unemployment, war and mass starvation would point to the need for a coherent anti-capitalist alternative most socialists are confused and demoralised. The reason is simple, both the reformist and Leninist parties are paying for their legacy of betrayal of socialism in this century. What they conceived socialism to be has been totally discredited. As anarchists it is important to realise that their are both advantages and drawbacks to these developments.

Why half the world's children go to bed hungry

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It's hard to know how any one can consider capitalism a viable system when looking at the situation of the less developed countries. After the millions raised by Live Aid, it seems unreal that people are going hungry. A recent UN report estimates that 30 million people face starvation. Yet EC beef, butter and wine mountains rot in European warehouses, farmers are ploughing crops back into the land, in US corn belt fields of wheat are burnt.

What about human nature? Thinking about Anarchism

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A WORLD without war, famine, poverty, racism? A world where there are no bosses ordering us around and living off our work? A world where competition is replaced by co-operation and individual freedom? Sounds nice. Who wouldn't like to see it? But it can never happen, it runs against human nature. How many times have you heard that line? How many times have you been told that people are naturally selfish, greedy, prone to violence and short-sighted?

Thinking about Anarchism - Revolution

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ANARCHISTS SAY that capitalism can not be reformed away. We say it must be overthrown through a revolution. Many people however believe that the failure of the Russian revolution of 1917 shows revolutions just replace one set of rulers with another. The failures of the revolutions in Nicaragua, Iran and Cuba to fundamentally change life for the workers of these countries seems to point to the same thing. So why all this talk of revolution?

Why the Working Class?

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The Workers Solidarity Movement say that a mass anarchist movement capable of getting rid of the division of society into bosses & workers, order-givers & order takers and building a new society must be based on the working class and its struggles. This is not some abstract dogma but follows on from our understanding of how change can be brought about.

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