What We’re Thinking

The Scottish Socialist Party is built on social solidarity and the spirit of resistance to oppression, injustice and nasty con tricks that strangle communities and people’s lives.

Life can be better than this. We have the resources, the know-how, we could be building a world based on people, not profit. We can, and should, be expanding the public sector, because more and more of us need it, and it creates jobs and training, it holds communities together and it supports families.

We should take key industries and infrastructure like the railways into the public sector, and ensure that they are democratically accountable to everyone – by ensuring elected agreements are kept, and involve passengers and workers.

The Scottish Socialist Party presents straightforward modern socialism – collective solutions to ensure society progresses and enshrining politics of equality for all – as the way forward.

Healthy nutritious school meals
We should raise the minimum wage to £10 an hour.
Free public transport – to combat congestion and bring communities together.

We should be raising the minimum wage, because we can afford to do this, through cutbacks in the defence budget and raising taxes on the rich, and because it helps to build strong, local economies.

We should be holding onto our schools and community halls, not closing them down like we were going out of business. We should be feeding our children healthy, locally sourced food, not the nutritionally deficient rubbish cooked up by the lowest bidder.

We should be spearheading an ambitious home-building programme, because it not only reduces the social housing waiting list, it creates skilled jobs and means less public money wasted on private landlords.

We should be investing in sustainable energy and a fully comprehensive, free public transport system, not building nuclear power stations and motorways.

The single biggest obstacle to the Scottish people building a better society is the British State, the Westminster regime, the Crown Powers.

Genuine independence for Scotland can only come from a break up of the British State but until we get to that point the Scottish Socialist Party campaigns for a programme that can be achieved if our society is run for people, not profit.

Painting a future fit for all.
Painting a future fit for all.

How are our policies written, agreed and decided?

The simple answer is: our members write the policy platform of the Scottish Socialist Party. We are a democratic socialist party – and this democracy extends to our decision making process in defining policies.

Before each of our national conferences, all of our branches ask their members to submit motions for consideration by the branch. The branch agrees to the motion, or it falls. The agreed motions are collected by the National Secretary and distributed back to all branches for subsequent consideration and possible amendment. These amendments are sent back to the National Secretary.

At the national conference, the attending members are given full text of all the policy motions and proposed amendments. The proposers and amendment-makers speak to the conference to argue their case. The floor is open to anyone who wishes to support or debate the merit of the motion or amendment, and lively comradely consensus and argument is encouraged.

For each motion and amendment, the conference is asked whether they agree or disagree. Each member indicates their approval and disapproval through a show of hands. In a tight vote, appointed tellers do a detailed count.

Branches propose and discuss motions for conference.
The motions are presented at conference.
A show of hands indicates whether the motion stands or falls.

What are the party’s policies?

You can find our statute books here. It’s a fairly lengthy collection of policies, grouped by category.

What about when you run for election?

The Scottish Socialist Party publishes manifestos prior to each contested parliamentary election. Some of our manifestos are here for you to read and enjoy. Imagine a better, socialist society.

2015 Manifesto
2011 Holyrood
2007 Holyrood
2003 Holyrood

2004 European Election Manifesto

2001 General Election Manifesto

29 thoughts on “What We’re Thinking

  1. As most people know, our country is run by a group of multi millionaires. Like most people with money they live on a different planet from the rest of us. They lose touch with reality, and see themselves as a special elite. They usually develop a ‘them and us’ mentality, and see the poor and under privileged as wasters and work shy. Which is very far from the truth. Not everyone was born into wealth and privilege, most of us have to get by on a secondary education, and work hard to better our position. Some people make it while others give up and take to drink or drugs out of disapointment and despair. It should not be this way. We never came here to be exploited, to be murdered, raped, sexually abused, and made to fight in wars that don’t concern us. We’re better than this.

    1. A lot of privileged people turn to drink and drugs as well. It’s easier now than it ever has been for someone from the poorest background to ‘better their position’ and if they do they will most likely give their kids the private education that they never had. They wouldn’t achieve that by being socialists. Socialism is fine if you have no ambition, it’s poor mans politics

      1. Jon it has never been HARDER for people from modest and poor backgrounds to better their circumstances. The UK has the second worst rate of social mobility in the Global North for example 32% of MPs, 51% of top Medics, 54% of FTSE-100 chief execs, 54% of top journalists, 70% of High Court judges went to private school, though only 7% of the population do. And the top 1% of the UK population has a greater share of national income than at any time since the 1930s. We live in an elitist society, a society that benefits at few at the expense of the many. Socialism offers a better way.

  2. I would agree about most things you have said,but how would you change that ? I think the people of Scotland are a people of thier own who are more than capable of making thier own choices good or bad and learaning from them,id also say we like to look after one another which differs us from people who voted for thacher for example but with the poor out numbering the rich just how do these people get in charge ?? Im interested in joining a party that is going to make a differance all be it small or big

  3. This is all fantasy, with little understanding how the real world works and ultimately everyone would be worse off. International employers will leave Scotland and OIL companies will not bother to extract north sea oil unless their is a a decent profit to be made and you will need their expertise to get at the dwindling supplies. Many of these ideas have been tried in the UK and other countries in the past and they simply don’t work. In fact, to get people out of poverty even the most hard line socialist countries do the opposite to what this manifesto suggests. Look how dramatically china changed when it ditched so many of its socialist ideals.

    1. Very few if any of these Ideas have ever been tried in a modern context in the UK. China was never a socialist country it was a totalitarian communist regime. Please do not confuse the two. You must remember however that the Chinese Communist Party managed to feed, clothe and house nearly a billion people who were in dire need. On the oil Norway has a National Oil co. owned by the state. Only Norwegian Rigs can drill for Norway’s Oil and they must be built there and run for the benefit of the Norwegian people.

  4. It is easy to be cynical about the real world, but at some time the first step must be taken to fundamentally change the world in which we live. There is no doubt that the UK is currently run for the overall benefit of a rich elite. The current UK government is one of the most openly corrupt and elitist governments. It has to change at some point, otherwise we are all finished. The current capitalist system is an unsustainable puppet economy controlled by the largest corporations, including the banks, for the benefit of themselves. It cannot go on like this. The Tory manifesto was a fantasy before they got into power with the LibDems and it remains a fantasy! There is no doubt that the aims of the SSP are idealistic, but unlike all the other parties, they are progressive. I support the nationalisation of the Scottish oil industry and creating a sustainable economy with incentives for new business to base themselves in Scotland. Implement rent controls and return the responsibility of housing to the local authorities, as well as introducing measures to redevelop the council housing stock.

    1. Totally agree with you on the housing issue. If we had decent council housing we could also get rid of those overcharging landlords who don’t even maintain their properties. When I had my first house (many years ago) my rent, including rates, was £7 per week, £28.00 a month. I earned £40.00 weekly then and my husband earned more. Rent was not a problem. People are lucky now if they earn enough in a week to pay a months rent. Where I work we have to ask for ID and sometimes its their tenancy agreements and you should see what so called “charitable” organisations charge the homeless for rent per month. You could buy a mansion with it.

  5. Instead of leaving the UK and improving Scotland, could you improve the whole of the UK? I live in North West England and would quite like it if a large part of our country did not abandon us.

    1. “Instead of leaving the UK and improving Scotland, could you improve the whole of the UK?”

      No, unfortunately. That is the UK’s choice and the UK is choosing to sway further towards the right-wing politically, and towards Tories.

      Scotland is naturally more socialist in its views and with a separation from the UK it would be the easiest and most convenient way to develop a small left-wing country.

      It wouldn’t actually be a bad thing for you, it wouldn’t be abandoning you as a victim of the government you are under. First of all if you take all past general elections where Tories have won the election, and remove all of Scotland’s votes, Tories still win the election, Scotland has no influence within the UK on the UK. However Scotland as an independent country would have strong influential powers over the UK, and nearby areas such as; Wales, Northern Ireland, Northern England.

      How do you like the idea of the North of England democratically voting to join Scotland in a new Union?

    2. scotland is a country its not a region of the uk or britain britains a region like europe the uk is supposed to be a union of kingdoms so while you live in the north east of england i dont live in the north of the uk i live in the west coast of scotland also we wont abandon our freinds and family in england they will still be supported by us scots

      1. Makes no difference if it is a country or a region, surely? Catalonia is a region of Spain with its own Socialist government(I think). I sure would like some consistent, socialist government and wish to god we could just get on with the, pressing business of reducing our consumption of Earth’s resources and creating some jobs for life in recycling and renewable resources!

    1. That’ll make America even more scared of Scotland! May I just say, Obama, don’t be scared, just let your poor have a say and you, Cameron; proportional representation please, now, without which democracy is a bit of a farce.

  6. As an ex-miner albeit, not through personal choice. I, like many thousands entered the coal mining industry of being promised a job for life. That was until, Thatchers elected Government in 1979 sought out to demolish one of the most militant and loyal unions in the UK. I worked in Seafield Colliery in Kirkcaldy until its immature closure in 1988. It entered the NCB’s closure plan due to being uneconomic? One reason why it was made uneconomic was the bad NCB’s decision to make it uneconomic. They spent millions of pounds worth of untried machinery in the difficult steep seams under the Firth of Forth. There is approx 150 million tons of extractable coal there to be mined without the need for untested machinery. However, the manpower needed to re-open these mines would be difficult as I am in the last generation of recruits into the industry. Now would be the time to think about the rich chemicals and by products coal has. It is a complete waste of energy burning the stuff, there is as much by products in a ton of coal as there is in a barrel of oil. In a Socialist Scotland. It would be very wise to re invest in the coal mining industry. What a lot of people do not realise, in the UK, only 7% of the coal in the UK has been mined since the Monks dug coal 500 years ago.

    1. Right behind you, Peter, at the time, but a hurricane of change is now blowing. Naomi Klein’s new book, ‘This Changes Everything Capitalism vs the Climate’, spells out for us in the bleakest of terms, the Truth about the disastrous consequences that await us all if we do not cease extracting and burning fossil fuels now. She didn’t say this to keep Scotland poor, but she does cite the case of Nuaru, in the Pacific Ocean, an island which was overmined with disastrous effects on the island’s population including an obesity epidemic, lack of fertile arable land and many road deaths. Then they became bankrupt! The planet needs to breathe! And heal.

  7. I’m a communist and also a member of the communist party of Great Britain and I’m for independence. We all have different opinions even us communists for independence. I mean some labour MSP’s are for the yes vote as well :p

  8. For many years I have been voting for SNP as a tactical vote. At heart I am socialist and not the pseudo brand “New Labour” represent.

    For me YES means escape from Tyranny, from Elitism, from injustice.

    Behind you all the way Scotland…. I dream of a republic…. 🙂

    1. I dream of a republic as well but tyrany elitism and injustice? It’s easy enough to ‘escape’ most of that by yourself no government will do it for you. You don’t need to box too clever to turn an underprivileged background to an advantage. Plus it gives a person something to brag about and the more impoverished the better. Honestly.

  9. I was always an SNP voter but never agreed with many of their policies. Just read what the SSP’s goals are and I am fully behind them .I am now with the SSP!✊

  10. Agree with all your policies but not one party is BRAVE enough to impose rent control in the private sector. Would you continue to line the pockets of buy-to-let landlords with what is basically the subsidy of the Housing Allowance?

    1. Absolutely, Clare- my rent is twice the average mortgage for the area!
      Landlords seem so reluctant to take on a tenant in receipt of Housing Benefit and yet the income from it, for them, is enormous Like, 2, 3, 4 times what a person on benefits gets to live on! This imbalance must be addressed, along with localized banking- Banking For the People, By the People.

  11. Housing is the major issue of our times and I will give my vote to whichever party understands that the cost of housing and the fact that our economy and banking system is all far too based around a housing bubble which is not good for the vast majority of the population.

    1. You’re right about housing being the major issue of our time.
      Perhaps if we referred to ‘homes’ rather than housing we might get more empathy.
      ‘What is it that everyone should have one of, before anyone has two’?

  12. I agree with nearly every policy but I get real feeling when I speak to SSP people that there is a lack of belief in the principle that we should all be doing what we can to support each other. There seems to be a concentration on making sure that people get benefits they are entitled to and nothing about what to do about those who are content to take benefits and do nothing. You might not like it but there are vast numbers of people who are content to take and not contribute – I know plenty of them. Perhaps they have had the soul torn out of them from the destruction of Scottish industry by successive WM governments but it shouldn’t be a choice to make. I don’t see how you can have a socialist society unless you have a policy for dealing with this – or is that approach likely to scare away some of your support.

    1. A Really good question and one that will act as a proverbial ice burg. A significant part of my interest is in poverty and deprivation. I think there have been a range of scientific social studies into this phenomenon and the party, now bigger, could possibly establish an advisory group to investigate this area on behalf of and representing the executive arm of the party.

  13. I am for ALL of the Party’s policies. I have been a member of the different UK Green Parties over the decades on and off. I have chosen to apply to join SSP as I believed there was an imbalance in the Party between the Urban and Rural, with rural issues, specifically over wind factories being thrown up all over Scotland to the financial benefits of big businesses, at the expense of the powers of local peoples’ wishes who had to then suffer living with them and all that they brought along. I believe in systems whereby the local ecology, environment, landscapes and people all support each other for the benefit of all. Whether rural or urban, local peoples’ voices need to be heard, respected and their wishes made reality. Not, kowtow to the belief in the fear of being abandoned by nationals and multinational corporations and not being able to live without them.

  14. How would one go about establishing a working party to review and put forward recommendations to the Executive and the AGM for possible amendment and adoptions? I am specifically interested in the clean, green energy section as there is so much more and some of what’s currently there is outdated.

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