Left Unity and transitional demands:

  • If Marxist economics is correct (and it is), then Keynesianism is an obstacle to uncovering the truth. No one opposes reforms, regardless of whether the profiteering parasites (the capitalists) can afford them or not. That is why Marxists raise transitional demands.
  • Transitional demands are encapsulated in easy-to-understand agitational slogans. They constitute the bridge between the stable post-capitalist world of tomorrow and the consciousness of the masses today. At every point in time, the masses are capable of doing something, at however low a level of class struggle. At every point in time our class knows what it thinks it deserves. All the lying propaganda of SKY News, the BBC and Channel Four News is not going to convince us otherwise. If that was possible, then we would not have witnessed the mushrooming of the campaign of mass non-payment of Margaret Thatcher’s flagship policy (the Poll Tax), sinking it and turning the Iron Lady herself into scrap metal.
  • Marxists may have a profound understanding of the state of the capitalist economy, and of how the employers are simply unable to concede reforms, nor even to tolerate those of the past, the legacy of historic battles.
  • Rather than indulging in an endless scholastic debate with the masses about what capitalism can and cannot afford, we are happy to allow experience of struggle to prove in practice whether we are right about that or not. If our assessment proves correct, then the majority of workers become prone to Marxists agitation, our proposals for taking the next step. And that next step is removing the veto from the propertied classes about investment in socially necessary public works.
  • This is the point at which it ceases to becomes a question of “borrowing” from the owners of capital, becoming instead a matter of radical redistribution from the rich to the poor, the haves to the have nots, via wealth taxes as well as sharply progressive income tax.
  • As far as charity is concerned, there is nothing to be said for that other than it is a tool for the super-rich. The so called philanthropists use ‘charity’ to allow themselves to pose as better than the rest of us. They believe this to be true because they have more spare cash to distribute, and they flaunt this so-called ‘generosity’, expecting thanks that some of their ill-gotten gains is invested in cheap pubic relations in addition to mansions and hiring butlers.
  • As far as borrowing is concerned, the markets will crash if any so-called social democratic government threatens to implement reforms the capitalists do not like.
  • We need a class perspective, comrades. We have to accept that the party lead by those MPs who prostrate themselves in the House of Commons yesterday to pay tribute to Margaret Thatcher are incapable of providing the class warriors that the ninety nine percent deserve. We need to start afresh. And Left Unity has to play a role in this, alongside TUSC, and all the trade unions, and every socialist from across the political spectrum who is willing to extend olive branches to defend our class. Work with decent socialists in the Labour Party, like Owen Jones, Tony Benn and John McDonnell, as well as those in the SNP and Greens. But we need a new party. We need a party that supports public ownership and the trade unions, and knows precisely why.

This blog post is a response to an article on Marxist economics versus Keynesian economics on Ken Loach’s Left Unity website and to some of the comments on it: What is wrong with the keynesian answer to austerity?/

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