Was Lenin a despot or a democrat?

Sadia Schneider The cliché of the authoritarian Lenin has become so common that the vast majority of writers repeat the mantra without feeling compelled to cite any evidence at all. Recycling a few hacked up, decontextualised quotes suffices. The mirror image of this caricature is the Stalinist conception...CONTINUE READING

Russia 1917 A radical workers’ democracy comes to life

Sandra Bloodworth The outbreak of revolution throughout Russia in February 1917 brought millions of people who previously had little say over politics right to the centre of political life. Historian Rex Wade describes how masses of people “burst forth with a dazzling display of self-assertiveness, public m...CONTINUE READING

Why radical change is not an impossible dream

Daniel Taylor To be a radical in Australia today, one must confront a daunting reality. To transform society, we must overcome powerful institutions designed to hold back social change. To do so, we need a mass socialist movement, harnessing our collective power to a project of fundamental social change...CONTINUE READING

An International Women’s Day to remember

Louise O’Shea International Women’s Day hasn’t always been about corporate lunches and worthy pontificating by stuffy politicians. One hundred years ago, it started a revolution. Not a revolution in anti-ageing cream or stain remover like the sort we’re used to, but a generalised uprising of workers and...CONTINUE READING

The truth about the Iraq war

Tom Bramble President Trump and his cronies are masters of “alternative facts”. But they’re not the first. Fifteen years ago, the offices of president George W. Bush, British prime minister Tony Blair and Australian PM John Howard ran a sustained propaganda campaign to justify the pending invasion and...CONTINUE READING

Fair Work and the horrible history of arbitration

Tom Bramble The cuts to penalty rates by the Fair Work Commission are not the first anti-working class decisions taken by this body and they won’t be the last. The Fair Work Commission and its predecessor organisations have for more than a century attacked workers’ wages, undermined conditions of empl...CONTINUE READING

Why democracy and capitalism don’t mix

Daniel Taylor When he took office in January, Donald Trump declared that he was “transferring power from Washington, DC, and giving it back to you: the people”. As the rain fell on the half-empty National Mall, the new president predicted: “January 20, 2017, will be remembered as the day the people beca...CONTINUE READING

Capitalism’s illusory freedom

Daniel Taylor World capitalism is a mess. Racked by political crises, teetering on the brink of economic crash or war, every year reaching new heights of economic inequality so extreme as to be almost unimaginable: the system seems to offer no hope for the future. We live in a period with no governing p...CONTINUE READING

What is Marxism?

Ben Hillier “All things obey money”, Solomon wryly quips in Ecclesiastes. Old wisdom seems obviously true. Our capacity to participate in society depends on our ability to purchase things. We are therefore in constant need of a supply of cash or credit, even if only a relatively modest amount. The lac...CONTINUE READING