- The Guardian
- Issue #1946
2021 is here. For many, the chance to put all the troubles of 2020 behind us, the new year could not come fast enough. However, communists know full well that a simple changing of the calendar will not make the circumstances of 2020 disappear.
2021 will present its own challenges. The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t gone away, and the impact it will have on social and economic affairs will reverberate throughout this year (and beyond).
Addressing the pandemic in 2021 means we must renew our efforts in fighting government legislation that attempts to undermine workers’ rights under the guise of “economic recovery” or “getting the economy back on track.” In this regard, the Industrial Relations Omnibus bill introduced by Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter will be the first struggle we must be engaged in (see page 12). We must also continue to fight back on reductions to JobSeeker and JobKeeper.
We must also ensure that, under the guise of “health and safety,” our democratic rights, such as those to protest and assemble freely, are not infringed. While sensible measures on public gatherings are a must to protect against the spread of COVID-19, the government has developed a different set of rules regarding major events such as cricket matches where 10,000 people were allowed to congregate. We must organise in disciplined and effective ways, leaving little room for error, that would allow law enforcement to quash demonstrations. Participating in rallies, protests, and strikes is crucial in placing pressure and rising awareness to the injustices in our society. They are also a vital part of bringing the Party to the people.
Internationally, 2021 marks the beginning of President Joe Biden’s administration. With Democrats in control of both houses, our American comrades have a lot of work in pressuring for more progressive policies. For us here in Australia, we must remember that even though Trump’s naked aggression no longer haunts the world stage, that Biden presents no less of a threat against the sovereignty of those who oppose Western hegemony. On this front, we must continue our solidarity efforts and speak out against US imperialism, and Australia’ involvement in US war plans.
As with 2020, the challenges ahead, however, should not be viewed through a pessimistic lens. The pandemic’s ability to cripple capitalism to the extent it has has revealed to many, for the first time, capitalism’s incapacity and unwillingness to help the working class and the deep inequality it propagates. The growing class consciousness that is developing amongst the working class provides the Party with the perfect opportunity to grow in numbers and support. As a result, we must bring the Party’s campaign “Health, Workers’ Rights and Socialism” to the people with clear messaging. From January to April phase three of this campaign, “Only Socialism and Struggle Can Ensure Workers Will Win,” will be rolled out and give comrades the chance to highlight socialism’s positive features and how workers can be a part of the revolutionary transformation of our society.
In addition to supporting the Party’s “COVID-19” campaign, Party branches across the country will need to develop and execute work specific to guaranteeing that the Party is visible in their respective regions is seen to be addressing community concerns.
2021 can be a great step toward the revolutionary change we need if we choose to seize it. Many struggles lie ahead, both known and unknown, but if we are diligent in our duties and activities, we can maximise this great opportunity to undermine capitalism’s suffocating hold on the working class.