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Vol. 81/No. 36      October 2, 2017

(front page)

SWP drive on for ‘Militant’ subscriptions, books, fund

The Socialist Workers Party’s nine-week fall circulation drive to increase readership of the Militant and books by party leaders is off to a good start.

At the heart of the effort is knocking on workers’ doors to discuss the carnage being visited on workers, ranchers and farmers by the bosses and their government as they try to place the cost of the deepening crisis of their capitalist system on us. And the SWP’s perspectives for how workers can meet these attacks and chart a course for the working class to take political power.

In addition to branches of the SWP, members and supporters of Communist Leagues in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the U.K. are using the drive — from Sept. 16 to Nov. 21 — to introduce the communist movement, its paper and books to working people where they live and in protests and strike picket lines they participate in.

The drive runs concurrently with the SWP’s $100,000 fall fund to finance the party’s ongoing work. The chart on the front page shows the quotas taken by SWP and Communist League branches. On page 4 is a chart showing fund goals SWP branches have adopted.

Dan Fein reports a team of SWP members and supporters from Chicago went to Louisville, Kentucky. “We went door to door introducing the Socialist Workers Party,” he said. “We found that a number of workers wanted to talk about the demonstrations against police brutality taking place in St. Louis.”

After discussing the party’s program for awhile, Ronnie Herman a 39-year-old chef from the Philippines, got a subscription to the Militant. “Keep up the good work,” he told us, “it’s important what you’re doing.”

Overall workers we talked to got two Militant subscriptions, 10 single copies and six of the books the party is offering at a special discount, said Fein.

The books are Malcolm X, Black Liberation, and the Road to Workers Power, Are They Rich Because They’re Smart?and The Clintons’ Anti-Working-Class Record by SWP National Secretary Jack Barnes; Is Socialist Revolution in the US Possible? by SWP leader Mary-Alice Waters; and It’s the Poor Who Face the Savagery of the US ‘Justice’ System” by the Cuban Five, five Cuban revolutionaries who spent up to 16 years in U.S. prisons for their actions in defense of the Cuban Revolution.

Ron Poulsen from the Communist League in Australia reported that he and three other members of Communist Leagues in Australia, Canada and New Zealand made a trip to the Philippines Sept. 12-18 during the Manila International Book Fair and were hosted at the Polytechnic University there by members of PUP SPEAK — Students Party for Equality and Advancement of Knowledge. PUP SPEAK won last year’s student council elections, ousting a Maoist current that had controlled the office for three decades.

Over two days, PUP members and other university and high school students who came by our table bought a total of seven introductory subscriptions to the Militant and 15 campaign books.

A total of 66 other books and pamphlets on the communist program, the Cuban Revolution and writings by revolutionary leaders also were sold at the book table.

Members of the Communist League in Vancouver, British Columbia, report they had some rewarding experiences talking politics with working people in the Surrey area in the Lower Mainland.

“We went door to door in a working-class town in Surrey and sold six books,” Carlita LaBlanc said. “One health care worker asked us to come back so she could get a subscription. She had asked us how she could contribute to what we were doing, and decided that getting the paper and showing it around to friends and workmates was the way to go.

“We learned about a rally in support of the independence referendum in Kurdistan an hour or so before it began on Sunday. We joined in and two participants got subscriptions,” she said. “It was a lively and upbeat event with music and dancing, despite the rain.

“Philippe Tessier, Communist League candidate for mayor of Montreal, will be coming through here this week, returning from a trip to the Philippines,” LaBlanc said, “and he’ll join us in campaigning in the region here for a few days.”

Members of the Communist League in London went door to door in the suburb of New Addington Sept. 16, selling five Militant subscriptions and two books.

CL members Ólöf Andra Proppé and Ögmundur Jónsson met Patrick Collins, a retired alarm fitter, and they discussed the recent opening of the government inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire and social disaster that killed at least 80 people. “There used to be more publicity — what they were doing, what they weren’t doing — but now it’s out of the news,” Collins said. “They refused to have any victims on the panel.”

“The inquiry is designed to keep people off the streets, to make out that the capitalist rulers will take care of everything,” Jónsson said. “To win the demands for permanent rehousing, financial assistance and fire safety protections residents need, working people have to rely on our own capacities to fight for them. What’s behind this is capitalist profiteering and contempt for working people.”

Collins said that he thinks millions of workers are getting angry about worsening conditions and “people will explode at some point.” He got a subscription to the Militant and Are They Rich Because They’re Smart?

League members were enthusiastically received at a Sept. 17 demonstration in London in favor of the independence referendum called by the Kurdish Regional Government. In addition to seven subscriptions, Jónnson said, they sold 28 copies of the Militant featuring a centerspread on the Kurdish struggle in Iraq, as well as four other books.

To join in the circulation drive or to contribute to the Party Fund, contact the nearest office of the Socialist Workers Party or Communist League listed on page 8.
Related articles:
Fall campaign to sell ‘Militant’ subscriptions and books Sept. 16 – Nov. 21 (chart)
Socialist Workers Party-Building Fund Sept. 16 – Nov. 21 (chart)
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