Brothers and sisters.
The free download of Soapbox has finished. We hope you were amongst the hundreds who claimed yours before it was withdrawn. Number one in the Socialist RnB charts, they tell us. But who’s counting? Such things are bourgeois.
In the last week we’ve been played countless times on BBC6 Music, Amazing Radio, XfM and even BBC Radio 2. This is what’s important. The war of position involves getting in amongst ruling class culture and demonstrating that ours is better. If the BBC play us alongside Mumford & Sons, listeners get to choose whose side they’re on. You express your commitment to culture through the papers you peruse, the bands you listen to, the news you access, the nights out you go on, the books you read, the organisations you join and so on. Counter-hegemonic culture involves challenging the ideas of the ruling class (the ruling ideas, of course, in any epoch) consistently. Not just in your home or your workplace or your college, but, where possible, through national, regional or global cultural organs. That’s the only reason we go on the kind of ‘PR offensive’ we went on last week. Our messages – or, rather, the class’s messages – hit more and more ears and change more and more minds. That coincided with the TUC Conference, with, finally, a degree of justice for the 96, and with the ludicrous spectacle of the Windsors calling for the jailing of photographers and journalist cos one of them got caught with her top off on a free holiday. These are the moments when we can orchestrate huge shifts in thinking.
So, the campaign to get us all over the media continues. As we count down to A Future That Works – the TUC march on 20th October – we need to recalibrate ‘common sense’ to bring it closer and closer in line with the goal of socialism. Whether that is through intelligent writing such as today’s Owen Jones piece in the Independent, edifying, if mild, polemic from the TUC itself, protest songs from comrades like Steve White and the Protest Family, or solution songs from the likes of Thee Faction, the point is, as always, to change. That’s only going to happen if we get everyone listening, reading and talking.
For this reason, everyone needs to be exposed to the new Thee Faction album. Quickly. And those people then need to congregate in Putney on the 18th October, just as they congregated in Putney in 1647, to discuss a better future. Two days later, they need to be in Hyde Park for the rally. Our record is a tiny piece in all this. But it is a fun, useful, engaging way of getting people to listen. Honestly, if we could do something else to change minds we would do. But, as it stands, this is what we’re best at. Spread the word. Get this new album into every home, and let’s get those minds changed. Let’s have a meeting….