Sought higher taxes to pay for welfare, better
working conditions and equality of finances.
This was in conflict with the Middle and
Upper class interests.
Has always sought support from outside its core
working class support. Working class support alone
was never enough to win an election.
The party of equality
and social justice?
Pure socialism sees the pursuit of equality of
outcome, regardless of contribution, as an
ambition. This is social justice for many socialists.
Labour has never proposed
absolute economic equality, the
incentives which capitalism bring
should be maintained. However
financial inequality should be
reduced through taxation.
The welfare state ensure that there is a minimum
standard of living which no citizen should fall below. A
good education system should enable poorer children
to achieve the same as those from wealthy families.
Always supported the rights of women and
minority groups. Migrant communities
overwhelmingly vote Labour.
Collective action by all
members of the
community is more
effective than individual
action. The state is the
only institution capable of
organising and delivering
Rather than citizens acting as
individuals and making their
own provision for health care,
education, pensions, housing
and social insurance, it would
be better for all if the state
organised this for them in return
for an increase in taxation. The
welfare state is the main
example of collectivism in
Workers should have strong
through unions to rebalance
the relationship between
employer and employee.
Common ownership of industry
A key part of collectivism, the industrial
output of the country is owned by the
general population not in the hands of a few.
Ownership of property, land, capital and
goods gives rise to exploitation to those who
do not have such economic power.
Labour Party constitution of 1918 (clause 4)
committed a future Labour government to secure
common ownership of all major industries.
Several industries were nationalised in 1945 but this
never amounted to more than half of the economy.