On behalf of the Executive Committee of the Communist Party, I express New Year greetings and best wishes to you and your family. It is going to be a busy and action-packed 2023:
SOLIDARITY WITH THE STRIKERS!
Who now denies the existence of the working class – the people whose labour creates, stores, transports and delivers society’s goods and services?
Who now would question how essential their work is to the functioning of a modern civilised society?
The current strike wave reinforces the point. Not only does the working class still exist – despite all claims to the contrary – but it has its own demands, and fights for them with its own organisations.
In doing so, we now see glimpses of the potential power of the working class. Without their labour power, society cannot function.
But we could manage without the super-rich shareholders and landowners whose income takes the form of share dividends, interest on bonds and savings, or rent from land and property.
The duty of Communists at the start of 2023 is clear: to do everything possible to help mobilise and support workers in struggle. On the streets, on marches and demonstrations, in meetings and when talking to friends and neighbours.
Conservative government strategy is to avoid settling the strikes in the hope that public support will evaporate and trade unionists will not want to lose more money by striking.
The Tories hope to turn the industrial action back on the strikers, their unions and the Labour Party, further restrict rights to strike and protest – and regain enough public support to win the next General Election. Behind that lies the ruling-class strategy to maximise profits, including through privatisation.
The Tories and their media will also play the ‘race card’, playing up questions of immigration and asylum seekers, falsely accusing Labour of being in favour of ‘open borders’ (as well as being ‘soft on crime’).
This makes it all the more important for Party members to do all they can to support picket lines, distribute the Morning Star and Party literature, and organise public meetings with Communist and other strike leaders – national and local – on the platform.
CLASS POLITICS IN A CLASS-DIVIDED SOCIETY
We must bring to the fore the class content of the major issues facing the working class and peoples of Britain.
The cost of living is a class question: it’s wages and living standards vs. the energy monopolies and their state-subsidised super-profits!
Health is a class question: it’s protecting and enhancing people’s lives and the NHS vs. capitalist profiteering (PFI, Big Pharma, creeping privatisation) and the under-funding which protects the big business and super-rich tax dodgers.
Housing is a class question: it’s decent, affordable homes for all vs. the property companies, banks, developers, speculators and big landlords and landowners who see the housing ‘market’ only as a source of profit and rent.
Immigration and asylum is a class question: it’s working-class unity, trade unionism, decent wages and conditions for all vs. imperialist super-exploitation and war, and corporate profiteering in the labour ‘market’.
Racism is a class question: it’s the unity of workers and their communities vs. racist discrimination, inequality and division.
Sex, gender and identity is a class question: it’s working class and people’s unity in defence of women’s rights, gay rights and human rights for all vs. oppression, inequality at work, and prejudice used to discriminate and divide.
National self-determination is a class question: it’s national rights, economic power, wealth redistribution and working-class unity in a federal Britain vs. national inequalities, national antagonisms and a divided labour movement.
Global warming is a class question: it’s sustainable development in the interests of people everywhere vs. corporate profits and the impact of climate change on our environment, eco-systems and the future of life on earth.
Peace is a class question: it’s investment in homes, health, education, transport, the environment vs. militarism and wars of aggression in the interests of monopoly capital, its military-industrial complex and their paid-for politicians.
THE FUTURE IS SOCIALISM!
2023 offers the Communist Party, in unity with the Young Communist League, numerous opportunities to put the case against the exploitative, grossly unequal, crisis-ridden, war-mongering society that is capitalism. The only alternative to it is socialism, as set out in our programme Britain’s Road to Socialism.
Local elections in many parts of England are scheduled for May 4. If fascist parties can stand hundreds of candidates in the recent past, why not a big push this year for Communists to fly the red flag?
We cannot rely on Labour to argue and campaign against austerity, privatisation, militarism and war. Wherever feasible, CP branches and district committees should be selecting candidates who will campaign for policies that people and their local communities first.
For the reasons set out above, we must redouble our efforts to strengthen campaigning bodies such as the People’s Assembly, CND, Stop the War, the National Assembly of Women and the movements in solidarity with Cuba and Palestine.
There will also be important anniversaries to mark this coming year, drawing out the lessons for today. These include the death of Karl Marx (1883, 140th), publication of the Communist Manifesto (1848, 175th), Hitler-Nazi victory in Germany (1933, 90th), Marx Memorial Library opened (1933, 90th), victory at Stalingrad (1943, 80th), the coup against President Allende (1973, 50th), Cuban victory over apartheid South African at Cuito Cuanavale (1988, 35th).
Rounding off the year, the Communist Party of Britain will hold its 57th Congress on November 3-5th. So this will make 2023 a year of discussion and debate, as well as a year of action.
So we will end the New Year as we begin, inspired by the slogan of former Communist MP Phil Piratin: OUR FLAG STAYS RED!
Yours in Comradeship,