Jim Reid

Why I read the WSWS

16 March 2013

What does the World Socialist Web Site mean to me regarding news and analysis? To put it bluntly, everything! I’ve been a reader and supporter of the site since its inception fifteen years ago and it is my first point of reference whenever there is a breaking story or unfolding international events. The reporting and analysis are clear, objective and thoughtful; whether the article is dealing with an art event, a trade union dispute; national politics or imperialistic intrigues.

The crisis of 1914 was a blow to internationalism. The collapse of the Second International and the struggle for a Marxist perspective throughout Europe, and the world, was betrayed by reformism.

The gains and lessons of October 1917 gave hope to millions of oppressed people worldwide, after the slaughter of the imperialist war. But the betrayals by Stalinism meant the continuing struggle within the working class for an international perspective was the task taken on by Trotsky and the Fourth International founded in 1938, in the face of tremendous setbacks and personal sacrifice. The WSWS is a most effective weapon in that continuing struggle. Where else can we get an internationalist perspective on world events? What other news site exposes the reactionary nature of the nation state and the so-called left-wing organisations that prostrate themselves at the feet of imperialism? Only the WSWS offers an alternative to the pandering and blatant rejection by these groups of Marxism and the historical role of the working class.

From a Scottish perspective we are now entering a dangerous time, as the referendum vote on independence is almost upon us. Only the WSWS has highlighted the dangers to the working class in Scotland and in Britain if there is a “yes” vote next year. The Scottish Socialist Party and Tommy Sheridan’s Solidarity—there is no real policy difference between the two—have been enthusiastic supporters of independence. Their reactionary stance has been exposed for what it is by clear analysis of the notion that an independent Scotland will be a more egalitarian society: what nonsense. As highlighted time and again in the WSWS it will be a haven for capital to exploit a low wage economy at the cost of eroding workers’ rights and conditions. I thank the journalists at the web site for effectively exposing this.