Peter Boyle

Sections 18C and 18D of the Racial Discrimination Act — the law against racial vilification — are under renewed attack from the right including the Murdoch media empire and the Coalition government for allegedly impeding free speech.

I support the current policy of the Socialist Alliance on sex work, that we stand for and campaign for: 1) The full decriminalisation of sex work and the sex industry (not just some of it); 2) Opposition to proposals that criminalise the clients but not sex workers (along the lines of the "Swedish model"); 3) The provision of peer support services for sex workers; An end to discrimination on the basis of occupation;

[Explanatory note: This contribution was prepared by a working group tasked by the National Executive with reviewing our Constitution and Code of Conduct to clarify and strengthen the organisation’s ability to prevent and deal with abusive and violent behaviour in the organisation.

Since our National Council meeting adopted the draft Socialist Alliance Perspectives resolutions, a few developments have taken place.

These include discussions to explore the prospects for greater collaboration or unity other left groups, including the Communist Party of Australia and Socialist Alternative, and the election victory of Socialist Alliance candidate in Sue Bolton in the Moreland City Council elections in Victoria. Also an ambiguity in one of them has been identified.

Once again the question of left unity is on the agenda in Australia. There have been exploratory talks between the Socialist Alliance and Socialist Alternative and also between the Socialist Alliance and the Communist Party of Australia (CPA).

Socialist Alliance has been campaigning for socialist revolution ever since it was formed in 2001. It adopted the labels “socialist” and “anti-capitalist” from the start and began articulating and developing a practical program to replace the capitalist system with socialism through the mobilisation of the power of the working class in alliance with other oppressed groups.

The Ninth National Conference of the Socialist Alliance will be held in Geelong (Victoria), from January 18-20, 2013. It is open to all Socialist Alliance members and invited guests.

May Day this year takes place in tumultuous conditions: the multiple crises confronting global capitalism are deepening, while mass resistance to its brutal rule grows. Taken all together, the people's uprisings across the Arab world, the mass demonstrations and strikes occurring in Europe, the Occupy actions in the United States and the ongoing efforts of Latin American revolutionaries to construct socialism of the 21st century pose a huge challenge to the capitalist system.

We have been informed by the Labour Party of Pakistan that Baba Jan, Waqar and other activists in Gilgit district jail were severely beaten and tortured by dozens of Rangers, Police and Frontier Constabulary in the early morning of April 28, 2012.

Please convey our strongest solidarity greetings to the Labour Party Pakistan and add our voice to all those demanding the immediate release of Comrade Ammar Ali Jan and the other seven leaders of the LPP currently imprisoned for fighting for the rights of the oppressed masses of Pakistan.

I think Adam Baker's political approach in his two contributions to Alliance Voices (Who are we? and Socialism or Ecosocialism) is totally mistaken. It is mistaken in political method and presents a distorted view of what we are doing in the Socialist Alliance.

These are my own views on the two documents that have been put forward by the National Executive for discussion in the lead up to the 8th national conference of the Socialist Alliance.