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					                                                                                                                             March 2009
Ownership                                                                                                                   Vol. 2 Num. 3


                                                                                                                  Common Ownership

             Capitalism or Common Sense                                                                           means that the resourc-

                                                                                                                  es of the world and the
        here are many aspects of      without food, all grocery stores      have to come from the only other
        our daily lives that just     are packed to the ceiling with ev-    source of wealth, profits. Here,      means to produce useful
        don’t make sense. For ex-     ery conceivable food item, and,       the dictates of capital take over.
ample, we have tens of thousands      again, we do not lack the abil-       In a system whose very existence      goods from them would
of people without homes. This         ity to provide food for everyone.     is for the accumulation of wealth
                                                                                                                  be owned by everyone
doesn’t just mean the obvious         Then there is the constant            in the interests of the small mi-
ones laying on downtown side-         scourge of poverty, the condition     nority that own the means wealth      and, therefore, by no
walks or living under bridges, but    that every government promises        production and distribution, tak-
includes those placed in motels       to abolish, or, at least, reduce,     ing large amounts of money from       one. All humanity would
or temporary shelters, the invis-     but one that continues to grow.       that goal without creating more
ible statistics. At the same time,    For example, Ontario’s Liberal        money, not only goes against          be producers meeting as
we have many empty houses and         government promised to reduce         the grain, but would destroy the
                                                                                                                  equals to decide what,
buildings waiting for tenants,        poverty in the province by 25%        purpose of the system itself. Al-
and we certainly do not lack the      over five years on taking office      though I am sure most of the own-     how, and where to pro-
materials and skilled workers to      for its second term, but now are      ing class would, themselves, like
build adequate housing for all.       backpedaling furiously, citing        to see people adequately fed and      duce based solely on
The plight of the homeless is in      the economic climate. Perhaps         housed, and many do contribute
the news right now with the cur-      they meant some ‘other’ five          to charities for that purpose, the    mankind’s needs. Dis-
rent recession and the growth of      years, sometime in the future and     system of constantly expanding
                                                                                                                  tribution of goods and
tent cities, as those unable to pay   not the next five years! Poverty      production for constantly ex-
their mortgages are thrown out        means lining up at food banks for     panding capital simply cannot         services would deny no
of their homes. Forty per cent of     hand outs; wearing shoddy, used       tolerate using money for purpos-
those who have recently lost their    clothing; neglecting health prob-     es other than increased profit. We    one access to what they
homes in the US are renters who       lems; foregoing educational op-       are seeing in today’s recession
paid their rent, only to see their    portunities or ‘luxuries’ like eat-   the results of contracted produc-     needed.   This   system
landlords foreclosed. They are        ing in a restaurant or going to the   tion and contracted profit expec-
                                                                                                                  would end the present
turfed out of their homes to live     movies, and many more indigni-        tations. To deal with the above
in tent cities or shelters, while     ties that make you a second class     problems, then, and many others       class system and ren-
their homes remain empty wait-        citizen. For those in poverty, it     in our society, the current ‘pro-
ing months or years for a buyer.      is a life of despair and struggle,    duction for profit only’ system       der money, trade, em-
Similarly, there are hundreds         wasted lives, wasted talents.         must be replaced by production
of thousands of Canadians who         Would anyone wish homeless-           for use, to meet human, not capi-     ployment, exploitation,
cannot afford adequate food for       ness, hunger, or poverty on           tal needs. That can only happen
                                                                                                                  want, and war obsolete.
themselves and their families.        someone else? Not likely, yet it      when ownership and control of
They include many who have            continues to exist and we feel        wealth production and distribu-
full time, low-paying jobs, un-       helpless to do anything about it.     tion is in all of our hands. Until     We welcome cor-
able, after paying rent and other     The problems are just too large       then, the problems will persist
expenses, to buy all the food         and complex to contemplate.           forever, and promises and rheto-       respondences
they need. For those growing          Some do make contributions, and       ric to the contrary, are just that.    with our read-
numbers without jobs, unem-           some try to rouse the politicians
ployment and welfare rates are        to action, but to no avail. Why,
                                                                                                                   ers. Send email
designed to keep the industrial       then, doesn’t the government                                                 to    spc@iname.
reserve army, the necessary la-       solve these blights on society?                                              com or write us at
bour pool that can be drawn on        The answer is that to do so, in
in boom times, barely alive until     this system, would require a lot                                             BOX 4280, Victo-
the next call to work. Hence, the     of money for programs that could                                             ria BC, V8X 3X8
constant and expanding line-ups       not be squeezed from the barely
at the new growth industry, food      adequate wages that most work-
banks. While these families go        ers receive and, therefore, would
                                End the Recessions Forever
        he frustration of this glob-   those who need it. Many families      er than the law of profit deter-       lives a life of privilege and abun-
        al recession has become        are short on food, housing, hy-       mining distribution of the wealth      dance, while the rest of us con-
        palpable as large swaths       dro and transportation, but it is     of society, democracy would be         tinue a life of uncertainty and
of the Canadian economy begin          not because there is a shortage of    used to make decisions about           want. We encourage you to learn
to feel the crunch. According to       these things that many have to go     what to produce, how much to           more about The Socialist Party
Statistics Canada, in the month of     without. The truth is very simple,    produce and where to distribute it.    and the broader Socialist Move-
January some 129 000 jobs were         if you can’t pay, you can’t play.                                            ment, and to lend your hand in
lost, bringing the national unem-                                            Currently the power exercised by       hastening the social revolution
ployment rate to 7.2 percent and       Generally recessions are the re-      the state is one of the ways that      necessary to ensure a prosper-
rising. Many companies are short-      sult of overproduction. During        domination over labour and capi-       ous life for your family and
ening their work week, and rene-       times of economic prosperity          tal is maintained by the capitalist    the future generations to come.
gotiating union contracts in an        companies must compete against        class. The socialist party therefore
effort to protect themselves from      each other by producing more          maintains that this power must be
any further capital losses. Owing      and cheaper goods for consum-         wrested from the hands of the
to the previous decade of econom-      ers. Eventually production over-      capitalist through the democratic
ic prosperity, many Canadians          shoots the consumer demand            ballot. The capture of the politi-
now suffer from overwhelming           causing companies to slow or          cal apparatus by elected social-
credit card debt and large mort-       even cease production complete-       ist delegates would immediately
gages for homes whose market           ly in order to survive. The result    render the capitalist class pow-
value is rapidly declining. If the     of this is shortened work weeks,      erless, and would empower the              Socialist Party of
past seven years were to be con-       loss of jobs, and frozen pay in-      working class with the demo-                   Canada
sidered a global economic party,       crease rates. Many companies are      cratic means by which we may             BOX 4280 Victoria BC
workers everywhere are now feel-       forced to restructure by moving       finally have control over our own
ing the hangover. In these eco-        their business to countries where     destiny. Furthermore, with a ma-
                                                                                                                       V8X 3X8, Canada
nomic times, the future for many       labour costs are significantly        jority of socialists having taken
workers is uncertain. In a world of    less expensive. It comes as no        over democratic control, com-           Victoria
abundance it is a downright shame      surprise when we see how many         mon ownership of the means of           Bill Johnson
that families are faced with lack      manufacturing jobs were lost in       production would then be insti-         bill_
and have such a fearful outlook.       Canada to Mexican and Asian           tuted. The result of this would
                                       workers in the past decade alone.     be the democratic administration
It is because the world’s means of     The calculation is elementary to      of a classless society based upon       Vancouver
producing wealth are based upon        the capitalist. The average rate      the common ownership of the             John Ames
the private ownership by the capi-     of pay for a Canadian worker is       means of producing wealth and 
talist class that we rather repeti-    around $18.00 per-hour, while the     the distribution of wealth accord-
tively find ourselves in these lousy   average Mexican worker receives       ing to self determined needs. The
economic declines. All wealth is       just $2.00 per hour to do the same    abolishment of the state apparatus
produced by and at the expense         job. The blame lies not with the      simply means the abolishment            Jaime Chinchilla Solano
of the working class. Decisions        Mexican and Asian workers who         of the capitalists class’ privilege
about what to produce, how much        are “stealing” our jobs, but rather   of operating society to their ben-
to produce and where to distrib-       the entire economic system that       efit alone, and the restructuring       Ontario
ute the products of our labour are     lives by the law of profit over       of society to operate according
based solely upon the expectation      people. Production always moves       to the interests of the majority.
                                                                                                                     John Ayers
of making a profit. Workers do not     to the place with the lowest la-                                    
become homeless because there          bour costs, this is a fundamental     Common ownership is the only
isn’t enough housing, just like        law of capitalist production much     way in which the human race can         Jacob Hodgins
families do not go short on food       like the law of gravity in physics.   guarantee a life of privilege for       jacobhodgins@hotmail.
because there is a shortage of it.                                           all. Until the emancipation of the
Capitalism in general, has been        The solution to this recession        working class from their degrad-
very successful when it comes          and to all future recessions is the   ing and exploited position in soci-
to producing large amounts of          abolishment of the private owner-     ety is achieved, we are all fated to    Quebec
wealth. Never in the history of        ship of the means for producing       the continuing cycles of recessions     Michael Descamps
mankind have we lived in a world       and distributing wealth and the       and booms. Furthermore, so long         mich_international@
of such an abundance of wealth.        conversion of these means into        as capitalism remains the social
Where capitalism fails is in its       democratic common ownership           economic system we are assured
ability to distribute that wealth to   by all workers everywhere. Rath-      that a small portion of humanity