"We stand for socialism, a society that is run by and for the vast working-class majority, a society in which the needs of the mass of people come first, not the greed of a handful of mega-millionaires", explains Margarita Windisch, Socialist Alliance candidate in the November 25 Victorian elections.
"A society based on satisfying human need is totally realistic. Imagine what could be done with the tremendous wealth in Australia if ordinary people — workers, pensioners and small farmers — had the real power. We could make education, health and public transport free. We could help the people of East Timor rebuild their country instead of stealing their oil wealth. The economic foundation on which we all depend (banks, utilities, transport, mines, etc.) would be publicly owned and used to benefit society, not enrich the capitalists. We could set about restoring our ravaged environment and make our cities fit to live in. Crime rates would plunge as poverty was eliminated. This dream is not only possible but necessary if our planet and its people are to survive.
"Let's take a look at Howard and Bracks' contribution to a better world. Life in Victoria has become more difficult for the majority. Workers can be sacked without reason. People are being jailed for alleged 'thought crimes'. Our education system is run down and hard working teachers are being blamed. Healthcare is becoming more and more expensive and public hospital waiting lists remain enormous. The state prison population has grown by 14%. Homelessness has increased. Our cities are choked by motor vehicles and public transport alternatives are woefully inadequate. Victoria and the rest of the country face a water crisis of fundamental proportions. If we are to fundamentally turn this situation around we need a political alternative to both Labor and Liberal.
"The Socialist Alliance is about building that alternative. We are ordinary people who are sick of being ruled by warmongers, racists, union bashers, and barely distinguishable Liberal and Labor politicians — and who are determined to do something about it. We believe that the people — in the workplaces, on the streets, in our communities — have the power to fundamentally change the way society is run. We are active in campaigns around the country — to save the environment, for workers rights, for civil liberties and refugee rights, for justice for Indigenous people and real equality for gays and lesbians. Socialist Alliance members are leaders in the trade union movement and in the anti-war movement.
"We stand in elections but we are different to other parties: we believe that struggle — union and community action — is the key to real social change. Join us in the fight for a better world."
SOCIALIST ALLIANCE CANDIDATES:
Vannessa Hearman for BRUNSWICK
Vannessa has lived in Coburg for 10 years. She is a part-time worker and a student. Migrating to Australia 22 years ago from Indonesia, she is concerned about issues of war and racism in the "war on terror" and the demonisation of the Arab and Muslim community. Being a committed public transport user, she wants to see a big improvement in the quality and affordability of services.
Margarita Windisch for FOOTSCRAY
Margarita has been living in the Western suburbs for six years. She has been actively involved in local campaigns including union solidarity, women's and refugee rights. She has taken a strong public stand against police violence and racism in Footscray. A founding member of Melbourne Stop the War Coalition most recently she was an organiser of rallies against Israel's war on Lebanon and Palestine. A social worker, Margarita has experience in the disability, women's health and housing sector.
Sue Bull for the Legislative Council, WESTERN REGION
Sue is a 49-year-old teacher who has lived in Geelong for the last six years. She is a committed trade unionist and anti-war activist. She is concerned about the attacks on public education and the undermining of the state schools system. Privatisation of resources throughout regional and rural areas is also one of Sue's major concerns.
Rowan Stewart for the Legislative Council, WESTERN REGION
Rowan is a 28-year-old metal worker who has lived in the Western Region all his life. As an active trade unionist, Rowan believes that young people will be most affected by the current massive attacks on workers rights, our living standards and civil rights. State governments could clearly play a greater role in defending these rights.