Need for an alternative

Ballot box.
Ballot box.

I wish to express deep appreciation via the Lancaster Guardian from the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition and its supporters for the solidarity received in the local by-election for Scotforth West held on May 22.

Sincere thanks.

We (TUSC) got 49 votes from an electorate one third the size of the County Council seat we fought in 2013, receiving 48 votes then.

This improved vote, proportional and total, was despite an almost total national news blackout over TUSC and No2EU/Yes to Workers Rights in the Euro elections.

Even the tiny English Democrats got launch coverage with 31 candidates while TUSC with over 560 got only a couple of minutes of a BBC2 interview with its chair Dave Nellist on Daily Politics. Totally unjust in our opinion, though not unexpected.

Nevertheless, this campaign has broadened the scope of the real left and given a real independent political voice for the working class majority which the four main parties locally plus Independents treat largely with contempt; also a big reason for increasingly low turnouts in elections and a political vacuum into which unsavoury organisations like UKIP and BNP have dived, especially in the Euro elections.

For every vote we got there will be many more people who seriously considered voting for TUSC before finally deciding to vote Green or Labour in fear of letting in ConDems, UKIP or BNP.

There is a basis for continuing to build on the growing consciousness of the need for a serious organisation that furthers the real interests of the working class majority of the population, ie: the people who live, or try to live, in places like Ryelands, Westgate, Newton, Ridge, Skerton, Hala and the Marsh, and are most harried by public spending cuts, for which there is no real argument nationally or locally and which are not currently being seriously resisted by any ‘established’ parties, including most Greens unfortunately.

Once again, many thanks to those who voted for and/or helped TUSC in Scotforth West, as people have in 560 other constituencies in England and Wales. Let us continue to move towards Socialism and the real economic and political liberation of working people from the failing capitalists system which, despite the spin of Cameron, Osborne, Clegg and Co, is long overdue for being put out of its misery.

Let us confound our enemies and defeat them in the future with solidarity, common decency and socialism.

Steve Metcalfe

Local By-election TUSC Candidate

Scotforth West

RMT Lancaster District Branch Sec

RMT Assistant Sec, Manchester/NW Reg

(Personal Capacity).