News from Nowhere

The campaign blog for Socialists in Scotland campaigning in the Livingston by-election - uniting for world socialism.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Independence no solution

Alex Salmon was interviewed on BBC Radio 4 this morning. He said that as devolution had failed to solve the problems facing people in Scotland he expected that, by the next Scottish elections in 2007, people would be more prepared to listen to the SNP's view that an independent Scotland was the only framework within which these problems can be solved. He even spoke of holding a referendum on the matter, unwisely since he must know he'd lose it. But then he needs to rally his troops and bluffing is part of being a professional office-seeking politician.
Of course devolution has failed. But that's because people's problems in Scotland were never caused by a lack of devolution in the first place. They were, and still are, caused by capitalism as the system of class ownership and production for profit. This is why independence is no solution either. As capitalism would continue in an independent Scotland, so would the problems. These problems are not caused by the form of government, and any government of an independent Scotland would still be compelled by the economic laws of capitalism to put profits before people, just as UK governments have been. The SSP would then no doubt come along and say "independence has failed because capitalism has been kept" and that what is needed an "independent socialist Scotland" and that then the problems will be solved. But they won't, first, because socialism cannot be established in one country (we are living in an interdependent world and capitalism is a world system) and, second, because what the SSP mean by "socialism" isn't real socialism but only a national state-capitalism.
The only framework within which these problems can be solved -- which don't just exist in Scotland but are basically the same in all the countries of the world -- is a world community without frontiers based on natural and industrial resources of the world being the common heritage of all humanity so allowing production directly for use instead of for profit. In other words, world socialism not narrow nationalism. That's the issue we are raising in this election.


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