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From: The Socialist issue 204, 4 May 2001: A System Under Siege

Search site for keywords: Capitalism - Anti-capitalism - Global - Police - May Day - Britain

Global capitalism: A System Under Siege

MILLIONS OF people protested against capitalism worldwide on May Day. According to Tony Blair many did so in London because they wanted confrontation with the police and supported "spurious causes".

But, contrary to the lies of the police and the New Labour government, the vast bulk of demonstrators were not seeking violence. They were there to expose the violence and exploitation of the capitalist system which allows:

20% of the world's six billion people to live on less than $2 a day;
Ten million children under-five each year to die from preventable diseases;
Half a million mothers to die in childbirth from complications that can be prevented with proper healthcare;
113 million children globally get no chance to go to school;
100,000 IT workers across the world to be sacked in the space of ten days.
The combined wealth of the world's seven richest people (according to the UN) to be worth more than the poorest 48 countries.

Little wonder a recent poll showed that 74% believe big corporations have too much power and 73% think top executives get paid too much. In Britain a Guardian opinion poll showed that 76% think "big international companies usually care only about profits and not the interests of the people in the countries where they operate". A further 67% believe these companies "have more influence on daily life in Britain than our own government".

On May Day, hundreds of Socialist Party members joined the thousands who were not intimidated by the over-the-top policing, with threats of rubber bullets, to demonstrate against capitalism in London and other cities in Britain. It is clear that the the police's main aim on May Day was to try and frighten potential demonstrators into staying at home. The police were not there to protect the public, but to protect the system.

They did not succeed. Nor will the capitalist class internationally succeed in defending their system against the growing anger of working-class people.

Throughout the world they protested showing that capitalism is a system increasingly under siege.

Now fight for a socialist alternative to this rotten exploiting system.

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Article dated 4 May 2001

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RMT picket at Nottingham station - East Midlands Railway dispute - Sunday 13th June, photo by G Freeman

RMT picket at Nottingham station - East Midlands Railway dispute - Sunday 13th June. Photo G Freeman

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