Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Obituary: Ron Stone (2018)

Obituary from the October 2018 issue of the Socialist Standard

We learn from comrades ‘Down Under’ of the death in Western Australia in June of Ron Stone. Originally from Dover in Britain, he was an active supporter of the World Socialist Movement in Australia. His cartoons, mocking politicians and royalty, appeared in the Socialist Comment which the World Socialist Party of Australia published in the 1980s as well as, later, in the Socialist Standard. He was also something of a poet:

Wage Restraint 
It was a crisis day in Parliament.
The House was hushed and still
As a Member rose with a Question:
‘Are we doomed to go downhill?’
‘I am confident of an upturn,’
The P.M. made reply.
‘If workers’ pay is held at bay
We’ll all be home and dry.’
‘How True ! How True!’ cried the workers,
‘Let’s end our silly strike.
We don’t want more money . . .
You can stick it where you like.’

‘Thank Heavens!’ yelled the bosses,
‘There’s faith on the factory floor
And now we have this extra loot
We’ll give it to the poor.’
They picked up all the money
And ran on eager feet
And pressed their surplus profits
On the people in the street.
They moved among the dole queues
And boarded every bus
With tear-filled eyes and heart-felt cries,
‘You need this more than us.’

Soon all the people prospered,
The Devil became a saint
Now that the wicked unions
Had exercised restraint.
The cities were filled with singing
And the sounds of laughter spread
As hand took hand in this golden land . . .
And pigs flew overhead.

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