As the Greek parliament votes to impose further austerity measures demanded by the EU and IMF Greek workers and youth fight back. Meanwhile, below is a declaration for the formation of a new working class party in Greece. For the time being the most determinant support comes from the unions in the petro-chemical sector, the electric power sector, the ship-building sector and the local government employees in public cleaning. We are publishing for the interest of our readers.
The proletarian response to the crisis in Greece
The global crisis in Greece creates a unique opportunity for the immediate formation of a mass proletarian party paving –thus- the way to socialism.
Socialistiki Ekfrasi, having identified both the opportunity for the formation of a class proletarian political party and the need for the socialist transcendence of the crisis, has initiated inside the
existing trade-union structures a discussion on the formation of an independent class proletarian political party. The immediate objective is the participation in the forthcoming parliamentary elections and the election –at least- of some proletarian deputies.
The draft of the Call for participation in the formation of the Labour Party in Greece elaborated by the Initiative Committee for the Formation of the Labour Party that has been formed by representatives of the trade-unions stands for the time being as follows:
For the Formation of the Labour Party
CALL FOR PARTICIPATION IN THE FORMATION OF THE LABOUR PARTY IN GREECE
Since mid 2010 the working class in Greece has been receiving a historically unprecedented barrage of attacks from the part of the PASOK government that has had as a result the dramatic decrease of
wages and of pensions, the increase of the age of retirement, the drastic diminution of the labour and trade-union conquests and the selling off of state property and companies.
This policy, which is implemented under the pretext of the debt crisis of the state, has not until now resolved or decreased the debt and deficit problems but, on the contrary, it makes them worse by sinking the economy into a deep recession and by dramatically increasing unemployment and thereby plunging into poverty 1/3 of the Greek people.
The leadership of PASOK, under G. Papandreou, has deceived the working people. For this reason their reaction was to overthrow him with their mobilizations and their global opposition to this unseen predatory governmental policy.
But the working people, however, by not having the possibility to impose immediately another trustworthy alternative solution, gave the troika and their local supervisors the opportunity to impose on them a reactionary governmental front of PASOK, ND and LAOS under the premiership – directly and without any pretext - of the representative of the domestic and international banks Loukas Papadimos.
This monstrous government has been formed in order to implement all those anti-labour and anti-worker monstrosities that the PASOK government under G. Papandreou had been unable to realize.
With every passing day the new government of the troika will implement methodically the plan for the enslavement of the working class of the public and private sector. For this reason, the working people have to find a way to respond effectively.
How can this catastrophic course be overthrown?
The first thing that we, the working people, must do in order to enable ourselves to overthrow the existing state of things is to understand the basic causes of this catastrophic evolution and what it
means for us.
The first conclusion we have to draw is that the famous private initiative, the state and the political parties, i.e. the existing economic and political establishment, have failed to lead Greece into
the 21st century in terms of economic growth and welfare for the majority of Greek people. Work, housing, health, education, decent living standards, all these are now a distant dream for every
workingman and workingwoman. On the contrary, they did succeed in increasing provocatively the wellbeing of a tiny minority of the people who have and own significant assets.
The overcoming of the bankruptcy of the state and the growth exit from the social, economic and political impasse is feasible only through the global productive transformation of the economy in terms of innovation, social economy , class responsibility and solidarity and democratic political participation.
In this fight we are not alone. The economic and political workers’ internationalism is a developmental factor of Pan-European range.
Europe is being struck in Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Hungary, and so on, in exactly the same way as we are being struck in Greece. Confronted with this operation of devaluation of the waged labour we are obliged to unfold the Pan-European collaboration of our forces and the co-ordination of our policies.
We are the 21st century in Greece: we, the conceptualists, the designers, the operators and administrators of the means of production and management, comprise the world of wage labour and with the point of our lance, our young generation, employed and unemployed, it is certainly capable of leading us to the world of tomorrow.
This world is founded on the equality of gender, men and women, of different cultures, the protection of parenthood and minors, and the education for all without exception. The world of labour is founded on the unhindered circulation of information and the free communication between individuals, religious tolerance, freedom of sexual preference, social co-responsibility and political participation. It reinstates the individuals with special needs, it restores the depended persons and it integrates everyone in society by solidarity and social cohesion. It does not have borders and neither supports or tolerates manipulation, violence and coercion. We unambiguously condemn nationalism, racism, intolerance of opinion, sexism and xenophobia as methods aiming at the division and the mutual cannibalism of the world of labour in its world dimensions it has. In place of all this we juxtapose the internationalism and solidarity of the world of labour. Our home is Europe, the Mediterranean, the entire world.
The complete employment, the employment in accordance with the available skills, the recompense according to capacity, contribution to and result obtained, the reduction of the duration and the time of work and employment, the free movement, removal and installation of labour, the continuous upgrading of the professional skills, education and culture as well as of health, safety and dignity of work constitute the quintessence of the world that we claim for and aim to create.
The task of lifting up society, of restructuring the economy and of reforming the political system can be overcome by far by the organic capacities of our trade-union movement. A political solution is
needed. The creation of a political party is needed, of the Labour Party, by the trade unions themselves through the self-organization of the working class.
We call every worker co-brother/sister, employed, in reserve, unemployed or pensioner, man or woman, youth or adult, who shares our anxiety for the present and the future of wage labour to gather into the trade-union that he/she belongs to and to undertake the initiative to form a Group of Initiative for the formation of the Labour Party.
We call every group of co-brothers/sisters in the trade-union organizations in the companies, in the sectors or in the regions who feel the need of establishing a class political body in Greece to form Groups of Initiative and to raise in the General Assembly the question of majority or minority accession of the trade union to the co-formed Labour Party.
We call the Administration Boards of all the trade-union organizations of wage earners, of unemployed and of pensioners to put to the vote in the General Assembly the question of their collective self-organization, either as a majority or as a minority, into the co-formed Labour Party.
Our decision to undertake the initiative for the formation of the Labour Party springs from a set of factors which we cannot any longer pretend that we do not perceive: all the existing political parties
and political organizations, parliamentary and extra-parliamentary, of the Right, of the Centre and of the Left have failed altogether to defend the class interests of the world of wage labour and have
contributed, each one in its own way, to the political dependence of the working class to the interests of the small, medium and big bourgeoisie domestically and internationally.
The class interests of workers has been shaken mercilessly by the self- appointed political representatives and self-proclaimed representatives of the class, through the party dependence of the
trade-union movement. At the end of the day, the supposed “social state” they managed in common turns out to be a ruthless class state that unloads the burdens of the crisis exclusively on the shoulders of employed wage earners, unemployed, pensioners and the youth. The supposed “fronts of working people” which they form here and there, are means of conservation of defunct and incapable leaderships in conditions of acute systemic crisis. The supposed “anti-capitalist movements comprised of the base of society” as they claim, are means of pressure by the student petit-bourgeoisie youth in order to maintain a petit bourgeois and anti-workers sector in the economy and
The factory, the work place, the office, the laboratory do not have up until now any political representation. Now, amidst the monumental storm of redundancies, of wage reductions, of a barrage of imposed taxations, of prices speculation and practically the cessation of all creation of new employment positions, we must raise up our class standing not only in terms of trade-union autonomy and independence from all the parties but also in terms of politics.
In the forth-coming elections we must send to Parliament our own delegates, the class delegates of the world of wage labour, and not every upstart petit-bourgeois who is self-styled as politician or is a
professional party bureaucrat promising the sky and all the stars in order to abandon us when the moment arrives for critical decisions concerning social transcendence. Both those who did not say the big “no” to the Memorandum and the accompanying policies for its implementation, as well as those who do not have anything more to provide other than their ineffective “no”!
Our immediate objective is to elect in the forth-coming elections a strong parliamentary group, which will be the striking unit of the working class that will encounter the attacks of the domestic and
international capital in society and of their representatives and guardians in parliament.
In order to do so we need to select our own candidates and this can be done only on the basis and inside the framework of the Labour Party. Class confidence and social recognition is their selection
In the same way that we select the candidates who we will support in the forth-coming elections in a few months, we will co-formulate, collectively and in a class manner, the political program of the
We do not claim that we have in our small pocket ready-made solutions to the complex problems we are facing. All those that claim as much are hypocrites or liars. We need only to recall the fate of the pre-election programs and statutes of the parties, all without exception, in the cases of contestation of their leadership: programs and statutes go straight into the waste paper basket.
We will discuss and elaborate collectively the pertinent questions andtheir solutions inside the structures of the Labour Party. We will co-formulate collectively our program from the first to the last line. The broad spectrum of labour incorporates a myriad of professions, from philosophers to musicians, from servants to land workers. We dispose, consequently, as a matter of course - and only we - the knowledge, the know-how and above all the experience of life that it is required for this. The organisation of these skills will be provided and managed by the Labour Party.
Our self-organization is not simply an organizational method among others that we are choosing for its formation. It is a fundamental choice in order to have the elaboration of the theses and the
organizational control of what we are building with our own hands.
The class unity of the class does not exclude but on the contrary presupposes its political differentiations. And these tendencies are constitutive of the Labour Party guaranteed by its Charter.
The political principle which constitutes the foundation of the Labour Party which we invite you to form on a collective basis is the right to recall the vote from the elected or candidate deputies voted
previously and the assigning of their vote to other elected or candidate deputies. The right to recall the vote and of re-voting is exercised by all citizens continuously and uninterruptedly. - -. This is the central political proposal of the Labour Party.
Without the establishment of this democratic principle, the political system, which is the tool of governance of the state by civil society, will always revert to governing it in such a manner that it will
finally come to be in favor of capital and against waged labour.
This democratic political principle is also valid for the Labour Party itself that we invite you to form and it will be, together with the principles of classism and internationalism, the foundation of its
On the trade-union front, the Labour Party will form its own Factions in the Trade Unions. But it does not call on the workers to abandon obligations in the trade-union factions in which they are active
today. The participation in the Labour Party does not presuppose the obligatory participation in the trade-union factions of the Party, nor does it imply his/her unique activity by it. Each comrade will decide individually in what trade-union faction he or she will be active.
Our trade-union organisation needs restructuring in order to become capable to observe and express effectively the generalisation of our struggle. The party and/or the personalized ‘closed shops’ and
‘association seals’ belong in the past together with their administrators. The conglomeration of our forces is imperative not only at the national level but also at the international and primarily
the European level. The Pan-European companies’ trade unions should be an immediate objective of our struggle.
The Labour Party is open to every group of workers in the work places and trade unions who share its principles and have decided to fight for the social change by democratic political procedures.
Those belonging to other classes besides the working-class, or those who have not yet integrated into a class but who share the principles and objectives of the Labour Party are invited to organize themselves into Clubs of Friends. The Friends of the Labour Party have all the rights and obligations of the members of the Labour Party except for the right of a deciding vote. They do advise but they do not decide.
The decision on the fate of the capitalist economic and social system is in the hands, in the heart and in the brain of waged labour and must not be left to some of their self-appointed saviors. “The
liberation of the working class, i.e. the abolition of the exploitation of man by man, is the deed of the working class itself”.
The Initiative Committee for the Formation of the Labour Party in
Athens, January 21, 2012.
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