Tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets of Dublin today, August 29th, to voice their anger over the imposition of the water charge by the Fine Gael Labour Government.
Today’s protest shows how strong this people power movement is. People traveled from every corner of the country.
The community resistance and protest movement that has flowered across the country over the last year has politicised huge layers of working class people. Our confidence is rising.
This politicisation was evident in the strong figures for non-payment of the first bills- 57% of people refused to pay. The second wave of bills, arriving across the country over the last few weeks, will also face a huge level of boycott.
This week the papers leaked news of ‘Operation Mizen’- a Garda secret surveillance operation designed to monitor leading water activists.
The state is also pursuing charges against 23 activists from Tallaght who protested against minister Joan Burton. A protest involving peaceful civil disobedience is being blown out of proportion to demonise the movement.
The tens of thousands on the streets today showed that the intimidation and slander has not worked.
We can beat the water charges if we fight on every front. We have to keep the protest movement going. The government will try to buy us off in the Budget- but a few crumbs and token gestures will not satisfy us.
We need to build non-payment in our communities. As part of the People Before Profit Alliance, the Socialist Workers Party will be knocking on doors in our communities and strengthening non-payment of the second bills.
We also need to kick out the establishment parties. All the mainstream parties are servants of the wealthy and should be punished with a ‘riot’ at the ballot boxes. Labour in particular will face destruction in the coming election.
But any alternative to the parties of the Golden circle has to aim to challenge the whole rotten system. The water charge is just one aspect of a system determined to make us pay for their greed.
From housing to health the government does everything they can to please the ‘markets’- another way of saying wealthy landlords, developers and bondholders.
The only way we can build a decent society is by challenging the wealthy and transforming society- we need socialism- a society where the wealth is democratically controlled and used for social needs.
The radical left Syriza government in Greece were defeated because they thought they could both end austerity and keep the rich happy by helping Greek capitalism to recover.
We can’t build mass movements of resistance only to have them diverted into compromise with the forces standing against us. Therefore we need to build a truly radical political movement – a movement of the genuine radical left.
Another Ireland is possible. A socialist Ireland. If you agree then you should join us.
Text ‘JOIN’ to 0863074060