What Challenges and Opportunities Should the City of Edinburgh Council be Aware of?

The Lothians Branch of the Scottish Socialist Party is submitting to the consultation because we believe that the economic strategy of the City of Edinburgh Council is resulting in a deterioration of the conditions of working people in our capital. The current and previous Labour/SNP/Lib Dem administrations have implemented ruthless and widespread cuts that leave our public services in crisis and a chronic shortage of affordable housing. Instead of perpetuating the low wage, high bills attacks on working people, the council should consider the changes we propose to raise funds and better the conditions of workers in Edinburgh.

Replacing the Council Tax

We call for the immediate replacement of the Council Tax with a means based alternative,

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Indyref2 strategy was based on “Wrong Issue, Wrong Time”

Responding to the First Minister’s statement today, retreating from her previous timetable for indyref2, Scottish Socialist Party joint national spokesperson Colin Fox said:

“Behind the First Minister’s much-anticipated climbdown over indyref2 is an acceptance of the Scottish Socialist Party’s warning that the strategy she announced on March 13th was a serious error of judgement.

“We warned then that reducing independence to a tactic in the Brexit negotiations was a very serious mistake. She has been forced into this retreat today because she chose to go for a second referendum when we were behind in the polls and over Scotland’s EU membership.

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Rebuff to May makes a Second Election likely

Commenting on the general election SSP joint National Spokesperson Colin Fox said:

“The over-riding fact in this General election is that Prime Minister Theresa May’s bid for an increased mandate has failed and her credibility is now in tatters.”

“The gains made by Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour shows that despite years of denunciation socialist ideas such as public ownership, workers rights and a publicly-owned NHS are highly popular and this must be welcomed.”

“Given the parliamentary arithmetic a second general election must now be a strong prospect.”

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Independence offers our only escape from a Zombie Government

“A campaign is underway in the Scottish media to portray Ruth Davidson’s Tories as the ‘real’ winners of this General Election north of the Border despite them being again comprehensively rejected here” warns SSP national spokesman Colin Fox.

He continued: “All the polls suggest the Tories will win this General Election at UK level with a big majority. But they also conclude this will occur despite being rejected in 90% of Scottish seats.”

“This ‘zombie election’ threatens Scotland with another nightmare – 5 more years of a right-wing Tory government with no mandate north of the Border. We didn’t vote for them last time or the time before that, we will not vote for them on June 8th either and yet we are set to be lumbered with them yet again.”

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Corbyn echoes Tory rhetoric on Independence

Scottish Socialist Party National spokesman Colin Fox described Jeremy Corbyn’s anti independence manifesto as “Deeply disappointing and underlining why Labour is in such deep crisis in Scotland.”

“Pro independence socialists have a great deal of sympathy with the many progressive and forward thinking policies Jeremy Corbyn advocates in the Labour manifesto.”

“However his failure to understand the National Question in Scotland is glaringly obvious. He is left sounding exactly like Ruth Davidson and Theresa May. Nor does he appreciate that the same political forces supporting him in England are largely in the ‘Yes’ camp here.

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SSP demand public ownership of Caledonian MacBrayne

Today’s meeting of the Scottish Socialist Party national executive committee unanimously agreed the following statement on the issue of CalMac ferries.

“This meeting of the SSP national executive committee – on behalf of the entire SSP membership – demands that the new Scottish Government reject Serco’s bid to take over CalMac ferries, and instead keep the service under public ownership and control through CalMac.

CalMac and Carry OnWe demand they do so on the basis of no loss of jobs, pensions, terms or working conditions for the workforce, and no reduction in services to the communities dependent on the ferries. We further demand that if necessary, the Scottish Government defy any interference on the part of EU bureaucrats or others,

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“SIGN OR BE SACKED” say the capitalist gannets!

richieby Richie Venton

‘Sign or be sacked’ is the dictatorial motto of many employers right now, as they issue workers an ultimatum to accept slashed wages and conditions or be sacked. That’s the approach of B&Q bosses recently as they hacked thousands of pounds off many workers wages to compensate for the miserly 50p premium on the minimum wage for the over-25s.

Now Newsquest, owners of a string of 29 Scottish newspapers – including the Greenock Telegraph, Dunfermline Press, Alloa Advertiser, Dumbarton Reporter, Carrick Herald – have applied the same dictatorial methods. They’ve demanded staff sign up to new contracts that include loss of a day’s annual holiday; longer contractual hours of work from 35 to 37.5 hours a week,

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SSP Response to Osborne’s 8th Budget

Tax cuts for the rich, benefit cuts for the poor. George Osborne’s 8th Budget as Chancellor was just like the other seven. Only the dates and details differ.

colin_foxIn response to what could have been Scotland’s shortest and final UK Budget, SSP national spokesperson Colin Fox said: “With UK National Debt at record levels George Osborne cut UK corporation tax, already one of the lowest in Europe, to just 17%. You would have thought there had been no public outcry recently over his failure to get Google, Starbucks, Amazon and other multinational companies to pay any tax at all.

Even under the ghastly Thatcher Government corporation tax was three times higher (52%). These Tories continue to shower neo-liberal finance capitalists with rich rewards.

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