January 31st - Independence Day

Workers' Party of Britain Statement


There is nothing more politically precious than self-determination. National independence is the key to democratic and economic progress.

The banks and large corporations have created a new world order of international free trade agreements, highly mobile capital flows and supranational bodies like the IMF, WTO, and EU.

To free themselves to plunder, they had to break down national democratic parliaments and over rule the sovereign laws and protections of individual countries.

The EU, aided by both the Tories and then New Labour, conducted a slow motion coup d’etat against Britain. First, our material sources of independence in agriculture, engineering and energy supply were pulled apart. Then, our public services and utilities were hollowed out and put under foreign ownership. As part of the attack, the global reach of the City of London and its speculators was given free reign as our own people started to starve and rely on food banks.

Those manufacturers and service providers that remained were forced to compete for public contracts under the procurement rules in an unfair, rigged single EU market. Petty divisions within Britain were stoked by the EU under the illusion that if Scotland and Wales broke away they would be rewarded with a form of ‘independence’ that made them entirely subservient to the EU.

Labour Movement Abandoned Sovereignty

The Trade Union Movement and the Labour Party abandoned Britain’s sovereignty and in a complete rejection of our democratic history, they believed that the unelected in Brussels and the European Court of Justice would save us. As a result, the vast majority of the working class abandoned them. Today there are six million workers in the trade unions but twenty six million unorganised. Worse still, in 1980 trade unions had collective bargaining rights for more than 80% of workers. Today, it is less than 20%.

The majority of people do not want to be part of a movement that has nothing to offer them and that has no confidence that our collective struggle and not the EU is the key to all progressive change.

In the absence of trade union or Labour Party commitment to Britain, workers supported latecomers to the field of anti-EU work like UKIP and the Brexit Party and, ultimately, had to force their arch opponents, the Tory Party, to get the country out.

After Brexit the Tories are Redundant

The Tories have one mandate, to get us out of the EU. After that is done they are redundant. They will be propped up by the Fixed Term Parliament Act and a Labour Party yet again trying to get its own house in order for five years to be ready for next time. Labour will turn against the rise of extra Parliamentary activity needed to assert our interests as it has always done.

We cannot wait however, the fruits of national independence must benefit workers now. A new deal for workers is needed. We are the nation. We must prosper. The better we do, the more we inspire others to do so, that is real internationalism.

No one can rule over us. We want neither NATO, nor a special relationship with the United States, nor vast swathes of our economy in foreign owned hands. Our fishing grounds, our agriculture, rebuilt manufacturing and high tech industrial sectors and rebooted, genuinely public, services, nationally owned utilities and transport systems must thrive in a new way.

We must settle the democratic deficit in the country and create a new constitutional settlement for the people.

Unelected, overseas control of our parliament and laws is over, now elected, accountable domestic control over our whole economy must begin.

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Britain and the World

Socialism is a recent, infant development in the whole, long history of the human species, yet its seeds and embryos have grown within each previous social formation worldwide.

thumbnail of Britain and the WorldIts essence in collective labour, sharing, solidarity, mutual support and human empathy has been evident in every human society. What has been unnatural and inhuman has been the theft of the collective production of people and the private ownership of land. This has occurred in relatively recent, class divided history since the first City states in Mesopotamia 5,000 years ago. It was this division into various forms of haves and have nots over the centuries that gave rise to new ideas of socialism which aspire to and predict a future without class division, the oppression of women, or ethnic groups.

Yet the full realisation of these socialist, human qualities comes about only when the material conditions for securing equality and a better life for all have been sufficiently developed. Socialism requires plenty, not penury. It requires a high level of education and awareness to sustain active democracy and an educated, conscious working class.

In 2018 humanity’s general capacity to control the natural, social and physical environments is advanced enough to eradicate starvation, poverty, unemployment, many more diseases and to repair the very climate damage its own activities of industrialisation have caused and prevent more damage in the future.

Each country has the wherewithal to provide free housing, education, healthcare, leisure and work for everyone, and to control prices on essentials in food, energy, housing and transport, medicines and so on.

What prevents the fulfilment of this aspiration is the private ownership of the productive forces. These should be at society’s collective disposal through democratic government.

thumbnail of Britain and the World Published by The Workers' Party of Britain

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