We mourn our friend and our comrade Gail, who lost her valiant battle against cancer on July 2. It’s so sad, a life cut short. But it was a life well-lived, a proud life, a productive life, a life on the side of the poor and oppressed of the world. Gail was such an inspiration to others, with her 40 plus years of struggle. She never gave in. She never accepted the injustices, the crimes, the rottenness of the system.
Talks & Workshops
Comrades, I bring warm greetings of solidarity from Australia on behalf of the Democratic Socialist Perspective, our youth organisation Resistance, and our newspaper Green Left Weekly. We warmly salute the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, when Comrade Ho Chi Minh proclaimed Vietnam’s independence to hundreds of thousands gathered in Hanoi on September 2, 1945. After years of fighting the French colonialists, and then five years of Japanese occupation, Vietnam was free. But full liberation was to take another 30 years of suffering and sacrifice, and fierce fighting.
1. Exciting developments are occurring today throughout Latin America, in fact there’s been turmoil on that continent for decades. But a revolutionary process is underway in Venezuela. There’ve been mass mobilisations in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Paraguay – strikes, demonstrations, governments toppled, and sometimes left governments elected. But in Venezuela, a revolution is happening, the masses are taking that road.
Comrades, I bring the warmest greetings of solidarity from the DSP in Australia, from our youth organisation Resistance, and from the newspaper Green Left Weekly, and I congratulate the comrades from the Malaysian Socialist Party for organising this inspiring conference.
I won’t spend time detailing the actual all-too heinous crimes, betrayals and pro-capitalist actions of the Australian Labor Party (ALP). For a start, I’ve only got 15 minutes, not the 15 hours you’d need to begin. I’m sure Judy and all ISO comrades here would agree in condemning their racist, pro-imperialist, pro-war, pro-boss record, in government and out – although when they’re out they sometimes have to put on a bit of an act.
We’re here to launch and welcome the new Resistance Magazine, and I’m here to talk about the old – Resistance magazine’s precursors, our publishing traditions.
Our heritage takes in all the best traditions of radical and socialist journalism. Internationally, there’s Lenin’s Iskra of course, even back to The Red Republican and the Friends of the People, * which published the first English translation of the Communist Manifesto in 1850. There’s the US Militant in its healthy days, and Intercontinental Press * (library files).
Comrades, this has been a very good conference, especially the liveliness and the seriousness of the discussion. At the end of most sessions there’s still been a of hands unable to get the call to speak! I think this reflects both the international political situation, and the keen interest sparked by the DSP’s proposals regarding the Socialist Alliance (SA). Certainly for next Resistance conference you’ll have to consider changing the agenda, to allow longer sessions for discussion.
Capitalism is in crisis, and you’d have to be blind, or a particularly gross and stupid billionaire, not to know it. Just look around the world and you’re faced with the squalor of poverty, unemployment, homelessness, exploitation, and environmental devastation. And you also see the obscene wealth, the luxury for a few. In Indonesia the crisis is very visible, in your face.
Nearly two weeks later we’re still in the middle of the United States election farce! Who’s won?
Bush? The illiterate idiot?
Or Gore? The wooden idiot?
And what does it say about democracy in the US?
We’re all here because we’re fed up with the rottenness of this capitalist society, fed up with the exploitation and inequality, the discrimination, the lies, the hypocrisy and the crassness. Young people here and around the world are the ones most likely to rebel: against the racism rampant in Australia under the Coalition’s Hansonite regime, against sexism, especially the aggressive push to get women back into the home as mothers and housewives; against war and militarism (John Howard wants to throw away $110 billion more in military spending), and against capitalism’s corporate tyranny.