[Marxism] SWP madness

dajj1950 at primusonline.com.au dajj1950 at primusonline.com.au
Sun May 12 00:21:51 MDT 2013

In the late 1940s/early 1950s a young couple approached Bernie Taft who was
the Communist Party Of Australia in Melbourne. They had recently came into
a bit of money and wanted to know if they should buy a house. At the time
the boom to build new housing to meet the demands for housing from newly
arrived migrants and a relatively well pais workforce was opening up.

His advice to them was 'Don't worry comrades the revolution will happen in
five years and you won't need to worry about housing.' I think BT felt guilty
about this advice ever since.

But it seems the American SWP is following the same advise.

But on the personal level I bought my house back in 1984 when I was still
a member of the Australian SWP. I suspect it was frowned upon a bit at the
time. But my moving days were over and I was in my mid 30s and needed to
think about the future. Home ownership in Australia was relatively high and
remains so despite in the last decade or so house prices becoming excessive.
Many other party members were to do the same over the next few years.

I had bought in a solid working class area within walking distance of work
(I was a shift worker who didn't drive). My repayments were not much greater
than rent and within about 8 years I had paid most of the mortgage off. But
having  a fully paid house has bought me many benefits. As a student for
11 years I wasn't under the same pressure to work as my co-students. And
now moving rapidly towards the Old Aged Pension it is the same story.

Each month on the radio program I co-present we talk to a worker who works
with old people in private rentals. Many of them pay 50 per cent or more
of their income in rent. That cannot be sustained in the long term. In the
past public housing would have filled the gap but that is no longer the case.
For two decades or more successive state governments have refused to build
enough housing to meet the demand for it - currently there are around 37,000
people on the waiting list. And the government is intent on privatizing much
of the remaining public housing. I am currently involved in the campaign
to prevent this.

But living in a capitalist society involves many compromises. But for many
workers it makes good sense to do so.

douglas jordan 


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