Response to the proposition of how to proceed with the sex worker rights policy amendments

By Pat Brewer, Illawarra Branch

I would like to thank Kamala for her Alliance Voices (AV) contribution outlining her views on how to move forward in the clarification of Socialist Alliance’s (SA) policy on sex work. I’d also like to thank her personally for supplying me with the URLs of recent documents on sex work in Australia, one of which was cited in the rationale supplied in the pre-conference discussion motivating the proposed amendments at the SA 10th National Conference. 

Resolution on Building the Socialist Alliance – as adopted by the 10th National Conference of Socialist Alliance, June 7-9, 2014.

Introduction

1. The revelation that 85 individuals own as much wealth as the poorest half of humanity and the steadfast refusal of capitalist governments around the world to take serious action to avert a climate disaster are stark reminders that the capitalist system is incapable of meeting human needs or solving the pressing environmental problems we face today. Only a transition to a socialist society based on a transfer of power from institutions that serve corporate interests to institutions of a genuine, grassroots, people's democracy can begin to solve these problems in a meaningful way.

2. The capitalist elite that benefits from the current arrangement has considerable wealth, military might and media power to help maintain their exploitative and undemocratic system. Further, they have considerable experience with bribing, co-opting and suppressing popular opposition movements in order to maintain capitalist class rule. This makes it essential that socialists strive to unite with all who fight to end capitalist rule, strengthen and improve the effectiveness of their organisations, absorb and preserve the lessons of the workers' movement and systematically educate new generations of socialists.

Report on the International Perspectives Resolution for the Socialist Alliance 10th national conference

By Peter Boyle on behalf of the outgoing National Executive

The first point in the draft resolution is confirmed by the fact that events have outstripped the resolution – modest and general as it is in scope  – in more than one area of the world, proving that we are having this discussion at a time of “extreme inequality, intensified conflict and ecological crisis on a global scale”.

The crisis in the Ukraine has developed, there has been another military coup in Thailand, the European elections have had both gains and losses for the left and some disturbing gains for the far right, and Spain has exploded into protest after the abdication of its king. 

Socialist Alliance sex worker rights policy amendments and Women’s Rights Charter changes, and the rationale for them.

By Kamala Emanuel, Perth branch

The Socialist Alliance 10th National Conference adopted changes to our policies on sex workers’ rights and women’s liberation to spell out further our opposition to all forms of criminalisation of sex work and underscore the importance of sex workers organising for their rights being recognised as a matter of industrial justice. [The policy as amended can be found here.]

While the changes themselves were relatively modest, the rationale that was put forward in the pre-conference discussion to argue for the changes was much more far-reaching.

This is unfortunate, because it muddies the waters as comrades understandably felt that in order to support or defend the changes, they would need to support all or most of the rationale used to argue for them.

International Political Perspectives -- Resolution adopted by the 10th National Conference of Socialist Alliance, June 7-9, 2014

Adopted by the 10th National Conference of the Socialist Alliance, June 7-9 2014.

1. The 10th national conference of Socialist Alliance is taking place at a time extreme inequality, intensified conflict and ecological crisis on a global scale. The 85 richest individuals in the world now hold as much wealth between them as the 3.5 billion poorest people in the world. A world divided by such extreme inequality will never be at peace and this is fundamentally why wars and uprisings continue to break out in numerous countries. This unprecedented concentration of wealth and power also is an absolute block to the urgently needed transition to an ecologically sustainable future.

Other International Resolutions adopted by the 10th National Conference of Socialist Alliance, June 7-9, 2014

Palestine Solidarity vs Australian Government
Adopted by the 10th National Conference of Socialist Alliance, June 7-9, 2014 

The Socialist Alliance National Conference condemns the Australian Government’s declaration of ceasing to consider the Palestinian territories taken in the 1967 war.  This is in spite of the UN resolution, supported by the majority of the countries, to consider East Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza as Palestinian land.
This decision will reinforce the illegal occupation.  The Socialist Alliance restates its support for the right of the Palestinians to reclaim all their lands that belong to them and have been taken by force.

Australian Political Perspectives -- Resolution adopted by the 10th National Conference of Socialist Alliance, June 7-9, 2014

Adopted by the 10th National Conference of Socialist Alliance, June 7-9, 2014

Introduction

1. Australia has escaped recession for more than two decades, despite the impact of the Asian and global financial crises on the world's economies. While Australia experienced strong economic growth in the years following the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), economic growth has now slowed to 2.8%, and is mainly driven by commodity exports, consumer spending and housing investment. With mining projects shifting from the capital investment stage into production for export, falling commodity prices, as well as increased global competition for commodity exports will likely impact on Australia's export income (and economic stability) in the years to come. 
2. Behind the buoyant consumer spending and housing statistics lies the stark reality that Australian households are now more indebted than ever. According to Barclays, levels of indebtedness have worsened since the GFC, in contrast to the US and UK. This means that Australian households are very vulnerable to any future rises in unemployment, interest rates or reductions to wages.

Revised Draft Australian Politics Perspectives Resolution

As at 4th June, 2014.

The following draft Australian politics perspectives resolution was amended by the June 3 meeting of the Socialist Alliance national executive, and is submitted for discussion at the 10th national conference on June 7-9, 2014. 

Newly added sections of the draft are highlighted in bold underline.


Revised Draft Socialist Alliance Building Resolution for the Socialist Alliance 10th national conference

As at 4th June, 2014

The following draft Australian politics perspectives resolution was amended by the June 3 meeting of the Socialist Alliance national executive, and is submitted for discussion at the 10th national conference on June 7-9, 2014. 

Deletions are highlighted with bold strikethrough, and added sections of the draft are highlighted in bold underline.

Some amendments to the SA Building Resolutions and to the Constitution of Socialist Alliance

By Liam Flenady (Brisbane branch), Ewan Saunders (Brisbane branch), Sian Cumberland (Brisbane branch), Sean Brocklehurst (Melbourne district), Dominic Hale (Brisbane branch), Angus McAllen (Brisbane branch).

A number of contributions in Pre-Conference Discussion have emphasised the need to deepen the party’s process of rebuilding an activist core and tightening up its structures.

They spell out the rationale for a much more thoroughgoing reorientation to cadre-development. In different ways they argue that the party’s important contribution to the social movements, and its potential to play future leading roles in the struggle, is increasingly hampered by a lack of cadre resources. They argue that such cadre resources can’t be rebuilt just by working harder and won’t necessarily come about just because of radicalisation in the objective situation. They have to be consciously developed. 

Recent Contributions