Dear Friends and Supporters,
We are living through the worst economic crisis since the 1930's and it's only just begun. Already over 6 million have lost their jobs in the US since the recession began. The UN recently reported that this year, for the first time in world history, one billion people will go hungry. Clearly this not only an economic crisis—simply a downturn in the boom and bust cycles—but also a deepening social crisis on a global scale.
Unfortunately, there is no discussion in the mainstream about real alternatives to the crisis-ridden system of capitalism. There is debate on how to regulate and reign in some of the excesses, but no real ideas in the mainstream challenging the system itself, arguing that profits should not come before providing decent health care, jobs, food security, and a good standard of living for the US and world population.
Socialist Alternative is a campaigning organization that takes up these issues on a day-to-day basis. Recently we've been involved in local battles against tuition hikes and budgets cuts as well struggles against layoffs. We have been active in the antiwar movement organizing youth in actions opposing the war and military recruitment. We have on-going work in our unions, putting forward the need for democratic, fighting unions. We are also now participating in struggles for LGBT rights and campaigning for single-payer health care.
Justice newspaper is the bi-monthly publication of Socialist Alternative. In the pages of Justice we stand clearly on the side of the working-class and poor—i.e. the vast majority—demanding living wage jobs and free quality health care for all. We call for public ownership of the financial sector under democratic workers' control rather than government bailouts. We oppose cuts to social services and call for an end to foreclosures. We call for an immediate end to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and call for spending on jobs programs, education and health care instead. At the same time, we explain that the biggest obstacle to ultimately achieving all these gains and solving other social problems like global warming and environmental destruction, is the profit system. Socialist Alternative calls for an end to the rule of profit by building a socialist society based on a democratically planned economy to meet people's needs.
We urgently seek to reach a wider audience with our newspaper and our ideas but it is a constant battle against our limited resources. Justice obviously has no corporate sponsorship. We're not presenting you 'Socialism sponsored by AIG.' We depend on the time, energy and resources, the blood and sweat of ordinary working people and youth.
Socialist Alternative is taking steps to make Justice a monthly newspaper but we need your help. We recognize that these are tough times. When the bosses and politicians ask for 'shared sacrifice' to help fix the economy, the hypocrisy can boil one's blood as if wage cuts, jobs loss and home loss can even be compared to having to sell one of your seven yachts. When we ask for sacrifice it’s because we know that only through the devotion and self-sacrifice of workers and youth can we build a movement to defend our interests, improve conditions and change our society.
We humbly ask all our supporters to consider making a donation today to help us produce a more frequent publication. All donations no matter how small or how big is greatly appreciated. If you give $100 or more you can receive an 18-month subscription that lasts until the end of 2010. $250 or more you will receive the same 18-month subscription plus our new 'Bail Out Workers, Not Wall Street' T-shirt.
Any donation you give not only helps us present real alternatives in the pages of a more frequently produced publication, it also allows us to actively engage in the day-to-day struggles of workers and youth. This crisis will have a big impact on consciousness. Already there is a growing interest in socialist ideas. As working people seek a way out and begin to fight back, the meetings, rallies, protests and struggles in general will provide a forum for raising consciousness about the way forward and the broader questions of fundamentally transforming society.
If you're interested in learning more about Socialist Alternative or getting involved visit our about and join pages. You can read the articles from Justice on this website as well. For international news of workers' struggles around the world visit socialistworld.net.
To donate click on the button below or send checks payable to 'Socialist Alternative' to PO Box 150457, Brooklyn, NY 11215. Once again we thank you for all the support you can give.
Jesse Lessinger, for the National Treasury