A referendum day message from Dave Nellist

A referendum day message from Dave Nellist

DaveNellistCov - Copy

Dave Nellist

Please read and share the message below from Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition Chair and Socialist Party member Dave Nellist about today’s EU referendum.

The European Union is Thatcherism being developed on a continental scale, a club for bosses designed to make it harder to fight capitalism.

Isn’t it odd that those who wouldn’t trust the UK Tories an inch somehow go all misty eyed about the undemocratic EU, where laws are made by the 28 heads of EU governments – 27 of which we didn’t elect – 2/3 of them Tories, and all of them in favour of implementing austerity!

The EU really should stand for Employers Union. It hasn’t given us equal pay, paid holiday or maternity rights, unions have had to fight for those things and unions will still have to fight to keep them.

If the EU was really on the side of workers there would be a minimum wage across the continent, something like €13 an hour, so people didn’t have to move thousands of miles to get a decent job. Instead the EU, together with the European Central Bank and the IMF, is implementing brutal austerity against the people of Spain, Portugal, Ireland and especially Greece.

So, if you hate austerity from Westminster or Brussels you get the chance to vote against both today!

Let’s vote Leave and remove an obstacle to nationalisation of rail, post, gas, electricity and steel. But don’t stop there – we need a new internationalism to combat the regional and global problems of poverty, forced migration, wars and global warming, one based on socialist planning and cooperation, not capitalist competition and markets.

And if we get Leave and David Cameron goes, let’s not worry about the debate on who should be the next leader of the Tory Party. Jeremy Corbyn and the unions should demand an immediate General Election so we can replace this Tory government with one on the side of working people!

Coventry Socialist Party will be holding an open meeting on June 29th discussing the aftermath of the referendum.

After the Referendum – now kick out the Tories! 29th June, 7.30, Charterhouse Club,
David Rd, Coventry, CV1 2BW


One thought on “A referendum day message from Dave Nellist

  1. David Trussler (@davidTrussler) says:

    This message raises some good points but is fundamentally flawed in its conclusion.

    Of course all socialists would recognise the EU from Dave’s description: that is a vehicle for neoliberalism. But I know of no-one on the left supportive of Remain (as I am) who goes “misty eyed” over it.

    It’s undemocratic for sure – but let’s remember we all live in a nation headed by an unelected hereditary monarchy, where our laws must pass through an unelected House of Lords.

    Nor should we ever forget how so many of our rights have been fought for through our trade unions. But it is wrong to suggest the EU hasn’t in the past produced legislation to the benefit of workers all over the continent, alongside important environmental regulation. And the right to free movement is one of the most precious rights we have gained and a real step forward for the international working class.

    But none of that is of primary importance when you look at the context in which this vote takes place. Farage has been whipping up xenophobia by the bucketload ably assisted by Gove and Johnson. Immigration has come to be the defining feature of the debate. To suggest that the vast majority of people will be voting today on the basis of austerity is a fantasy. I wish it were otherwise but as socialists we must deal with the actual situation not the one we would like it to be.

    There is no room for nuance on the ballot paper: it’s “Leave” or “Remain”. There’s no “Leave but on a socialist basis”. The context, where the referendum has become many things beside the actual wording on the paper – but most centrally a plebiscite on immigration – is crucial. When we vote – whatever our intentions when we do so – our vote to leave counts exactly the same as that of Nigel Farge or Boris Johnson.

    In this context to suggest, as Dave does, that the removal of Cameron would be a positive development for workers is part of the same fantasy. With the xenophobic right on the rise this would not open up the possibilities for the left suggested here. Quite the contrary in fact as British politics swings inevitably to the right on the back of a leave vote.

    In this context voting to remain is the lesser evil. It’s a situation which is in many ways unsatisfactory but it is based in the world we really live in not the fantasy one we would all prefer.

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