Monday, December 16, 2013

On leaving the SWP

Like many others following the SWP’s Annual Conference, I have now left the SWP. Below, for those are interested, briefly sets out the reasons why and lays out what I think should happen next. While writing this is in itself a useful exercise for clarifying my ideas, it also my attempt an explanation for all of those people, over the last 9 years, that I have recruited, tried to recruit, sold the paper too, argued with and generally harangued about the brilliance of Leninism.

What went wrong? Part 1 – the Disputes Committees
I’m not going to go through the entire story of the way the two complainants were treated here (for a good overview and background, see revolutionary socialism and Dave Renton’s blog). The reality is, however, that the complaint of comrade W about Martin Smith was seriously mishandled. This needn’t have been the case. If the CC had been honest about what was going on rather than stage managing the 2011 Conference, we may have been able, collectively, to correct the mistakes then. That didn’t happen, however, and when the complaint resurfaced in 2012, it was again mishandled.

I think it’s important at this point to point out that the Disputes Committee failed politically to deal with this complaint. There’s a lot of rubbish out there about trusting the political judgement of the DC panel. Well, trust is earned and based on record – I’m afraid the record shows that the comrades on the Disputes Committee made a serious error around this. I’ll leave aside the dodgy questions, the grossly unfair processes because I think the central political question is more important. I can accept that the rape was ‘unproven’ as an outcome (though I think they should have done much more to point out this doesn’t mean it didn’t happen and comrades have subsequently wrote well about why the default should be believing the victim) but it simply beggars belief that the DC did not find Martin Smith guilty of the campaign of sexual harassment he so clearly carried out. This is especially true when comrade X came forward with corroborating evidence and a similar story of abuse and harassment. Just so we’re clear, Martin Smith is 100% guilty of sexual harassment (as the subsequent DC report shows).

All of this would be bad enough but could still have been corrected. Unfortunately, the Central Committee chose to try and cover up the case and use bureaucratic arguments to try and deny the existence of the second complaint. Thus they turned a crisis in one part of the Party into a crisis of their leadership. From that first error, all other subsequent errors followed and their constant strategy of increasing the divide has led now to a serious split at the heart of the SWP’s cadre – turning their leadership crisis into a crisis of the tradition.

What went wrong? Part 2 – the underlying problems
Its fair to say that over the last 9 years in the SWP I have found myself in informal tendencies with a whole lot of comrades over a whole lot of different questions. Most of the time that has been within the framework set out by the Central Committee, meaning in general I have been a loyal comrade (and until this year I have only broken discipline once and that was against Bambery so it doesn’t count). Even where disagreements did exist, such as with the deterioration of the paper or our poor approach to the Pensions Dispute, these disagreements took place within boundaries of what I would consider normal Marxist polemic. Sure, there were problems but again these took place within acceptable limits and did nothing to shake my view that the SWP, imperfect though it was, was the best tool in our class’s toolbox for building a better future for humanity.

Like many comrades, the last year has been a steep learning curve for me. The political decisions made by the leadership and by their supporters point to one unavoidable conclusion – that the politics of the SWP, and of many of its members, has ceased to be the politics of Marx or Lenin or Cliff. The strategy pursued by the CC and its supporters only makes sense if you accept the complete contradiction between their view and actual reality. Nowhere is this more obvious than with question of Conference votes. The ideal of democratic centralism is full discussion, decision then unity in action. When the Bolsheviks clarified this formula (one that finds its roots in real working class struggle) they did so without taking into account the future degeneration of the SWP leadership. As such, the Bolshevik method is predicated on the idea that comrades may put forward many different analyses and strategies and one must be chosen and tested. This works fine when these analyses are based on actual reality – it is a system that can’t cope when a majority of comrades simply ignore reality. Hence, conference votes that the matter was dealt with well, all is resolved, everyone is a comrade in good standing and apparently, through some Leninist magic, this then becomes the new reality. This ignorance of reality, the replacement of real circumstance with wishful thinking reminds me more of Stalinism than Marxism. It is a method that thinks that SWP Conference votes can change the world and it is a method that has no place within the international socialist tradition.

Thus over the last year the leadership’s strategy has demonstrated time and again why it can no longer claim leadership over the most advanced workers. As we travelled further down the rabbit hole, more and more questions were raised about our method and about the level of politics and discipline in the organisation. At every turn, the CC almost seemed to willingly answer these questions in the negative.

The Defeat
As so we reach the December Conference, our third one this year and the last chance for the CC and their supporters to correct their trajectory and to join with those of us wanting to rescue something from the fire. Unfortunately and predictably, the loyalists did not take this opportunity and so I find myself leaving the organisation to which I have dedicated my entire adult life.

It is important to say here that my politics haven’t changed. I am still convinced that Marxism is the best and only method for explaining the world around us and the future that millions hope for. More than this I remain convinced that the organisational form referred to as Leninism is the best way to organise in order to achieve that future. I do think, however, that the SWP no longer remains a useful tool for building that future.

As we move forward, the SWP-rump will still continue to exist, its members will still play a positive role in the working class movement and I will still work alongside them. But in terms of the project to build a revolutionary party, they now have nothing to offer. The class war tests us all of the time and over the last year the SWP majority has failed a fundamental test.

The future
While the result of the last twelve months of battles has been irredeemably negative and sad, it is now over and the concrete question facing those of us who have left or should have left is what we should be doing now. You can’t be a Leninist without an organisation so the first step is to try and form something new. I would imagine this to be fairly lose at first but it should be somewhere for revolutionaries to debate and plan action, to bring new layers of radical workers and crucially to produce some sort of publication. The process of the faction fight over the last year has educated many of our number, myself not least, in some of the bigger political questions we now face. It is now up to us to put that clarity into action and to nurture the new culture we have been developing. This project is a modest one but it should have as its short-term goal the development of Leninist organisation that unites all of those serious revolutionaries who want to carry on activity. That means the best elements of both the SWP Opposition and the ISN, plus their peripheries. In future, it will hopefully mean the best elements of those still left in the SWP as well.

This step is the next crucial one – the ISN contains many lessons, both good and bad, of how to try and build something new. I want us to avoid throwing the baby out with the bath water in terms of our politics but equally I think we need to follow the example of making serious and concrete changes to our method in order to change the culture we have inherited from the SWP. I also want to get my own house in order first before I even think about diving into radical reformist projects and realignment initiatives, of which it’s fair to say I have a healthy scepticism.

What this means for everyone else out there is that soon I will be selling you some sort of publication again (and I promise this one will be better than the last!), that I will still be bending your ear about revolutionary potential and I will soon be urging you to join me in building a revolutionary organisation.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Kurds and the Syrian Revolution

There has been a lot of debate amongst the European and American left about the Syrian Revolution. I think Simon Assaf does good job at explaining the only correct Marxist position in relation to the Syrian Revolution during his Marxism meeting this year:

But one thing that its much harder to get news on is the role that Kurdish resistance fighters are playing in the Revolution. From what I can glean (and Kurdish and Syrian activists can put me right here if I've read this wrong), it seems that there is no coherent unity either within Kurdish Revolutionary forces or with the wider Revolutionary forces. Now, some of this is undoubtedly down to the general level of disorganisation amongst the Syrian opposition - differences carefully fostered from outside. But from what I can see, there are two main problems with how the situation is developing.

Arab Nationalism
The Syrian National Council, the western-backed government-in-waiting of the potential new free market republic of Syria, is insisting on the essential Arabness of the Syrian Nation. So although it has made attempts to incorporate the Kurds into the opposition (naming an 'independent' Kurd as its leader), it still insists on characterising the country as the Syrian Arab Republic, something not that welcoming to Kurdish fighters. This seemed the main cause of disagreement during a congress of opposition groups in early July, where some Kurdish groups walked out.

Kurdish vacillations
This in turn has caused some serious vacillations on the Kurdish side, which have manifested themselves in quite intense disagreements among the Kurdish resistance groups. This isn't necessarily anything new, as each area of occupied Kurdistan tends to have a different approach to the process of liberation anyway (so Turkish Kurds are much more anti-US as the US supports Turkish attacks on Kurdish villages, while Iraqi Kurd leaders were happy to welcome the invasion of Iraq in 2003).

The effect of both of these problems has been to weaken the overall strength of the Syrian Revolution. In that it reminds me of the position of Lenin on nationalities under Tsarism. Lenin argued that any all attacks on the state weaken it and that therefore Russian Revolutionaries had to support all national liberation movements aimed at toppling tsarism. In this he was opposed by Russian Chauvinists, the majority of which went on the become Stalinists (for different reasons, Luxemburg was critical of this stance).

A similar call has to be made of the Syrian Revolutionary forces now - by recognising the possibility of an autonomous or independent Kurdistan, they will wholeheartedly win over Kurdish fighters, strengthening the Revolution.

A Kurdish Republic
Kurdish forces as well need to draw conclusions from this strategy. There quiet takeover of towns in the main Kurdish area is a useful blow against the regime - but that temporary control will not last if the regime survives. They must be part of strenghtening the Revolution against Assad. It is not good enough to act locally in this instance.

Having said that, a very easy way to force the hand of the bourgeois revolutionaries of the SNC, would be to declare an independent Kurdistan in Syria. This will allow Kurds to deal with the SNC on a more equal footing as well having the nice effect of messing up american plans for the Region.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Curiously seeking Red Mars

On Monday morning (European time) NASA's Curiousity rover will (hopefully) touch down on the surface of Mars and begin its robotic, semi-autonomous exploration of the Red Planet. I bascially want to say that this is awesome and should be something that excites every Socialist and progressive out there.

There are those that criticise the Space Programme as either (i) a massive waste of money (ii) an imperial hang-up from the Cold War aimed at increasing national prestige. While (ii) is definitely true and (i) can be a useful propaganda point in the right context, its not acceptable (not to mention undialectical) to simply write off space exploration on this basis. Worse still is those who write off space exploration per se and see it as some sort of geekery/impossible abstraction. The second group in particular can sound plausible by arguing that sorting out Humanity's ills on Earth has to be the first step before we even start thinking about anything else.

To those people, I think there is a very simple reply - we have to offer a vision of wholly different existence for humanity in order to balance the vision offered by the current Capitalist society. This isn't an argument for lemonade seas and utopian socialism but it is an argument that we should point out the possible and the likely in future human development. Gene therapies that stop and reduce ageing, the colonisationation of our solar system, artificial intelligence (though I personally think artificial conciousness is a longer way off), cures for cancer, clean power generation, a freely accessible information net, etc, are all things within our power now or within near sight, if society was organised more logically.

As Engels pointed out at Marx's graveside "mankind must first of all eat, drink, have shelter and clothing, before it can pursue politics, science, art, religion." So, arguments about food distribution and the equal sharing of the neccessities of life are still key when it comes to condemning the heartless anarchy of the system and highlighting what the possible alternative is. But we want both bread and roses, so we can't ignore the immediate future of socialist society on Earth - that would, undeniably, involve space travel, colonisations of other worlds, even terraforming them. To give this up is to produce an austere vision of the future socialist society.

That is why I think all socialists should be hoping that the Curiosity rover lands successfully and all those who want to see a real exploration of the cosmos should be picking up their Communist Manifestos.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The eternal British ruling class and their left cover

I have spent quite a lot of my reading time over the past few months perusing books about palaeoanthropology and archaeology, particularly centred on the island of Britain books (for instance Francis Pryor’s Britain AD, Chris Stringer’s Homo Britannicus). I have immensely enjoyed some aspects of these books, not least their consistent materialism set in a full scientific framework explained in easily accessible language. But I’m spotting a trend in some of these works and this is finding an even more vulgar echo in some sections of the media.

That trend is the projection backwards in time of the British ruling class. Today, the BBC carried an article called ‘Stonehenge was built to unite Britain.’ This sort of shoddy journalism can only exist because some experts in the field perpetuate the view that there is something inherently British about such sites as Stonehenge – essentially that the people of Wiltshire today are more closely connected with those sites than people in County Kerry or Provence or Kiev or even Ecuador. This is simply not true and its annoying me a lot.

The idea is that our island population has been essentially static: that for the last 11,000 years there have been a community of people on the island of Britain that have developed uniquely. Now, rightwingers and reactionaries like to claim that we developed independently over the last 1500 years and you can easily dismiss the drivel they come out with. The problem I have is with faux radical writers taking up a nuance of this argument.

Pryor is a case in point. His Britain AD is supposed to be a radical revisionist history of Britain after the fall of the Roman Empire. The argument he puts forward is aimed at the conservative view that the Romano-Celtic (although Pryor rejects the idea of ‘Celts’ and therefore calls them Romano-British, more on that another day) population of the island was decimated in the south and east, being pushed into enclaves in the north and west. Now, there is a massive amount of evidence that undermines this ‘Mass Invasion’ view of cultural change in Britain and Pryor rightly takes aim at this essentially racist English origin myth. He marshals material and archaeological evidence to show there were no massive conflicts, social breakdown or massacres at the time. So far, so good.

Unfortunately, he then goes on to suggest that population movements in Britain after the fall of the Roman Empire were negligible. This literally leaves him arguing that the entire population of the south and east of Britain rejected the cosmopolitan mixture of Romano-Celtic languages and culture that existed at the time and decided to develop a Germanic language and introduce Frisian legends and styles of dress. They did all this within one century, shedding Iron Age traditions that had existed for a millennium.

A much more probable scenario involves the settling in Britain of a new ruling class drawn from tribes that existed on the periphery of the Roman Empire. A similar process happened in Lombardy, Visigothic Spain, Vandal Africa and Frankish Gaul. Over time, cultural interaction meant the rise of new composite cultures within these territories that gave us the beginnings of Medieval states. The balance between Roman and non-Roman elements in the new composite cultures differed in each territory – non-Roman influence is almost non-existent in Italy and Spain, was wiped out by the Arab expansion in North Africa but did leave a greater legacy in France. England is simply another example of this process, with Northern European settlers leaving a much greater legacy to the composite English culture.

Pryor would have us believe something different – that alone amongst Western European territories, England saw no significant population changes and developed its own ‘English’ local culture. England’s experience is the exception, a special case.

From this follows an almost logical position that there has been a continuity to the British (read English) experience from that time. Pryor himself projects this further back by talking (rightly) about continuity with Bronze Age and Iron Age traditions. The BBC article today simply extends this back into the Neolithic.

This argument is nothing more than a faux radicalism that serves to serves to create a British identity that is eternal. The fact that this rubbish is being perpetuated by otherwise leftwing writers (as Pryor undoubtedly is) simply gives it more credence. Their rationalisation of this process means that the BBC can you use the 2012 national splurge to help popularise this idea.

We shouldn’t be soft on these inconsistencies are they are important. We need to argue for a correct view of history that recognises the importance of events on a species wide basis – not one that promotes the development of your own ruling class as somehow special and eternal.
Apologies for the incoherence of this Friday afternoon rant.

Friday, June 1, 2012

On Egypt and Greece

(or remember dialectics anyone?)

A debate is haunting facebook, a polemic with two sides and angry words. The blogosphere is groaning under the weight of angry proclomations.

As I'm off on holiday for a week, I was going to add my thoughts to this debate but, as Cliff used to say, I will stand on the shoulder of giants by flagging up some of the more interesting links in the debate.

On Greece
It's also worth checking out the debate in Fourth International (the orthodox trots).

On Egypt
I don't even have to write these myself as John Molyneux has done a good job here. John, as ever though, is generous in his polemic. I am less forgiving so, simply:

If you think joining Syriza is the way forward you are simply a reformist. Its the height of opportunism, electoralism and centrism. It also, crucially, fails the Greek working class and demonstrates that you no longer see workers self-activity as the key agent of delivering socialism.

Not critically supporting Moursi in the Egyptian election is the worst kind of abstract ultraleftism I've seen. Faced with a tangible threat to the revolution in a situation where, up til now, the class and the Party aren't hegemonic, you have to side with those forces that will increase the confidence of the class - in a decision between Shafiq and Moursi, that means the Brotherhood.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Down with Shafiq... Down with the new Mubarak!

Down with Shafiq... Down with the new Mubarak!
The Revolutionary Socialists
28 May 2012
The Revolutionary Socialists Movement confirms its opposition on principle to the candidate of the Military Council, the dissolved National Democratic Party, and the forces of the counter-revolution, Ahmad Shafiq, who has managed to reach the second round of the presidential elections to face the candidate of the Muslim Brotherhood, Dr Mohammed Morsi, thanks to a massive mobilisation by the counter-revolutionary camp, which deployed the full, organised force of the resources at its command: the repressive apparatus of the state, the media, and the business interests standing behind Shafiq.

His success reflects the smear campaigns, systematic repression and intimidation of the social and popular forces which peaked before the election and were expressed in the dregs of the old regime daring to run in the election, combined with the inability of the reformist and revolutionary forces to unite in a political front to prevent their candidacy. Finally it also reflects the failure of the candidates affiliated with the revolution to unite behind a single candidate clearly expressing the programme of the revolution as we recently warned.

On the other hand, the Revolutionary Socialists Movement welcomes the accomplishment of the millions of voters from the poor, the workers, the peasants, employees, the Copts, the unemployed and the youth of the revolution who backed Hamdeen Sabbahi. He competed strongly for second place with Shafiq, scoring 21.2% of the total votes cast and coming third by a narrow margin. This reflects the great weight of support among the popular forces, the forces supporting the project of the revolution and the forces aligned with the Left for a programme which addresses both social issues and the question of civil democracy, thus allowing the construction of a front of the militant left which has a wide popularity in the Egyptian street.
We stress our full support for all moves aimed at the verification of instances of fraud which were carried out against Sabbahi and for efforts to apply the law of political exclusion to the criminal Ahmad Shafiq.

We are deeply convinced of the role of the masses as the most effective and influential force and guarantor in all the battles of democracy, which they won the right to participate in through their great revolutionary struggle, for which they offered martyrs and injured from the beginning of the revolution until today. We are also convinced that the victory of Shafiq in the second round of the elections will be a great loss to the revolution, a powerful blow against its democratic and social gains, and will give a golden opportunity to the preparations of the counter-revolution for a more brutal and extensive revenge attack under the slogan of “restore security to the street within days”.

We therefore call on all the reformist and revolutionary forces and the remainder of the revolutionary candidates to form a national front which stands against the candidate of counter-revolution, and demands that the Muslim Brotherhood declares its commitment to the following:

Formation of a presidential coalition which includes Hamdeen Sabbahi and Abd-al-Moneim Abu-al-Fotouh as Vice-Presidents.
The selection of a Prime Minister from outside the ranks of the Brotherhood and the Freedom and Justice Party and the formation of a government across the whole political spectrum in which the Copts are represented.

The approval of a law on trade union freedoms which clearly supports the pluralism and independence of the workers' movement in contrast to the draft law proposed by the Brotherhood to the People's Assembly.

The Brotherhood's agreement with other political forces on a civil constitution which guarantees social justice, the right to free, quality healthcare and education, the right to strike, demonstrate and organise peaceful sit-ins, the public and private rights of all citizens, and the genuinely representation of women, the Copts, working people and the youth in the Constituent Assembly. We cannot fail here to call on the Muslim Brotherhood and all the political forces to put the interests of the revolution before party-political interest and to unite against Shafiq so that we do not deliver our revolution to its enemies as easy prey.

Our position does not, of course, mean that we are dropping our criticism of the social and economic programme of the Freedom and Justice Party and its 'Renaissance Project' which is biased in its essence towards the market economy and the class of the men of finance and business, nor our criticism of the political performance of the leadership of the Brotherhood and the Freedom and Justice Party and of the trust of these leaders in the Military Council and their attacks on the revolutionaries during the battles of Mohammed Mahmoud Street and the Cabinet Offices and others. These attacks included accusing the Revolutionary Socialists and other revolutionary forces of treason, and the presentation of a legal complaint against us to the Attorney General.

However, what concerns us in the first place is the interest of the revolution, and its future, and we have to defend the right of the masses to make choices and test those choices as a condition of the development of their consciousness and the development of their position in relation to different political forces.

We are also aware of the magnitude of the error in failure to discriminate between the reformists of the Muslim Brotherhood, who are supported by and will be supported by millions in the elections who aspire to the redistribution of the revolution and genuine democracy, who depend on the grassroots of the unions and professional associations and other social and democratic organisations, and on their audience among poor peasants, workers and the unemployed, and the fascism of the military's man, Shafiq and the thugs of his campaign who are united in their desire to end the revolution and close the door on any democratic or economic struggle.

We pledge today to join in the widest possible struggle among the masses of our people against the candidate of the old regime. The election of Shafiq would cross a red line, as if Mubarak returned or he was found not guilty of his crimes. It would be exactly like rejecting the sacrifice of the martyrs and accepting the defeat of the revolution. The conditions for the struggle, the battle for a decent life, and the continuation of the political and social revolution will become extremely difficult with Shafiq installed in the presidential palace.

Turn the second round of the presidential elections into a blow against the old regime!
Fight to organise the popular forces against the slaveowners' revolt!

The Revolutionary Socialists

Friday, May 18, 2012

SYRIZA: Hopes and limits of a government of the left

From the website of the Greek SWP

Written by Giorgos Pittas of the Greek SWP (SEK) for their paper Workers' Solidarity.

The front page of ‘Youth Monday’ (a Greek paper) on the 14th of May exceeded even the anti-communist propaganda posters of the Civil War: A suicide by firing a gun in his mouth, drawing on the wall a map of Greece in crimson blood. The title warns us: "very close to the cliff ..."

The ruling class and their parties are in such panic that they can’t keep up appearances even. The idea that there can be in Greece, a leftist government seems repulsive.

But not only the Greek ruling class are in panic after the elections in Greece and France. The "markets" and the ruling classes in the EU and around the world "worry" as SYRIZA "has the opportunity to form the first leftist government in modern Greek history," said Reuters.

And this is true. It is not something common, neither in Greek nor of course in world history, the emergence and establishment of leftist governments. The industrialists, bankers, shipowners prefer to govern with the same parties that fund, support and may control policies to serve their interests.

The leftist governments make their appearance in history in times of great crisis - economic, social, political - in conditions of intense class polarization, when the ruling classes can no longer govern in the old way at the same moment the people are suffocated. Latin America is a prime example. In Venezuela, Bolivia, Equador and a number of other countries, in place of bloody dictatorships that ruled for decades came democratically elected, and in some cases, leftist governments.

These reversals have not been predetermined as a result of the economic crisis, neither emerged from "normal" channels, such as elections. Most emerged from strong labour movements and uprisings. The uprising, the Karakasi in 1989 in Venezuela, for example, initiated a hard class war that brought a few years later the government of Chavez to power. Even when Chavez was elected president, are the masses of poor workers and farmers who blocked streets prevented at least two dozen coups and other provocations of a ruling class that does not give up.

Similarly, in Greece, the prospect of a leftist government that terrorizes the ruling class would not exist without  December 2008, the culmination of events that destroyed the Karamanlis government without the 17 general strikes, small strikes, occupations of ministries and workplaces, indignant  at the squares, the blood of the batons and the chemicals with which they have watered the streets of Athens. Without this labour resistance this tsunami  of the last two years, without this tremendous power, we would not be discussing the issue of a leftist government.

This force is not going to lose the next election that will bring to power a government of the Left. France 1936 is from this perspective, a typical example: In elections in May 3, 1936, in a time of economic crisis similar to today, after hard struggles against the rise of fascists and strikes for an entire two years the Left - the coalition Socialist Party, the Communist Party and the Radicals, the "progressive" party of the bourgeoisie - triumphantly won a majority in parliament.

The "Popular Front" in the election came down to a very modest reform program. But the workers did not wait for even a properly formed government. The entire month of May they went on strikes, demonstrations and a huge wave of factory occupations. When Leon Blum, the socialist prime minister of the new government hastily took office, both he and the leaders of leftist parties called for restraint after "the Government would review the requests." But these appeals fell on deaf ears. The workers understand that their action-strike, the occupation, the demonstration-was the guarantee of victory and in many ways organized their own committees.

Collective Agreements

On June 7, French employers' organizations terrified by the explosion strike,agreed the list of requests was tabled by the union leadership. For the first time in history, enshrined in collective agreements, the 40 hr week and paid summer leave.

In France of '36, the prospect of leftist government further exacerbated the crisis and gave even more confidence in the working class to build on its strengths, sharpening the class polarization and creating conditions of dual power. Next to the leftist governments that were trying to find compromises with pieces of the ruling class (the same time that many of them were appealing to the fascists), the working class began to show the possibility of its own self-organization, the prospect of democratic workers' councils. The same happened in the same period in revolutionary Spain.

The prospect of a left government can reopen such a period today. But this does not mean to have any illusions about the limits of a leftist government. The solution will not come from above. Those who, in today's crisis and class polarization, promise that they can impose even elementary steps, with an "institutional way", who promised "stability" that would bring a parliamentary majority delude themselves and sow illusions in others.

First, because of another government, another power. The economic power that governs the country will fight in every way for its privileges: Is there a possibility that domestic bankers and locals to accept cancellation of the debt or nationalize the banks because they will decide this in parliament? Industries to accept taxation, prohibition of dismissal an increase in wages? The media barons to open their media to reflect the views of the people? Others will threaten to draw out the funds transfer to other plants, some will lockout, others will hide fuels and products.

And then what will stop them? The state some say, but the state is not neutral, it's a class state. Does it stop the judges who earn a lifetime of wealth from oil bosses? Who will stop them maybe the police, where one in two voters are supporters  of the fascist Golden Dawn?  Let's be clear. The state is on the other side.

The image of the radical reformist president Allende of Chile defending with a weapon in his hands the parliament against the Pinochet coup in 1973 shows a dramatic change of the limits they may impose on even the most honest of leftist governments. On the other side of the reformist coin we will always remember the "socialist"  promises and "realistic compromise" of Mitterrand, of Gonzales, A. Papandreou and the descendants (and offspring) of them.

The problem with the reformists, either right or left, whether honest or opportunist is the common way they treat the working class. They do not believe that the working class is the subject that can overthrow capitalism, but rather that they may impose change from above.In this sense the use struggles of the working class as to act as pressure to achieve the necessary compromises. Returning to France in June 1936, Maurice Thorez, then secretary of the Communist Party said characteristically: "Well, we must know how to close a strike if its demands are met. But even more, we must know how to accept a compromise even if they have satisfied all the demands. "


Then, the compromises of Thorez led to a number of governments with the participation of the Left that adapted more and more to the right. "Do not play the game of reaction, do not undermine our government" was the message sent to the base of the left every time you go to get back in the game - in the name of military preparations for the Second World War. So passed a law abolishing the five-day week and overtime pay, a huge wave of layoffs and persecution spread to all workplaces and the end of leftist governments in France came a little later, having sown the frustration of the working class themselves.

The only way is for the working class to have its own response to the terror and misery  sown by the capitalists and is to impose its own solution that there is strength, where we produce the wealth, in the workplace. With the expropriation of the means of production and alternative organization of production, economy, society above the needs of the majority of society and not profit.

It is the path of the revolution in October 1917 in Russia, they not only occupied the factories, but claimed the right of the revolutionary workers, peasants, men and women to discuss, decide and govern themselves by representatives elected directly and recallable the real workers 'democracy of the soviets, the workers' councils’. Replacing and not hesitating to overthrow the provisional parliamentary government a few months before they had defended it against the coup of Kornilov.

With the same intensity that we defend the left government against any attack from the Right but do not hesitate to show the only real solution to the crisis, the revolutionary overthrow.

Over the last twelve months, hundreds of thousands of activists and militants claimed the squares for direct democracy. They occupied the ministries and paralyzed the center of power. Put in their hand the most "sacred", the property of their factory bosses their newspaper. Committees at the base built to overcome the bureaucratic leaderships of selling out in the unions, workers' control at the point of production. It is in these steps is the hope to win.

SYRIZA compromises

 If SYRIZA found strength to take the command from the President of the Republic, the other side took advantage of the situation to increase pressure on the left. The problem is not that SYRIZA failed to form the government of the Left. This did not come with any way of parliamentary combinations or relations. The problem is that this effort by the ruling class tried to see how much water can be put in the wine of the Left, and SYRIZA they constantly retreat.
The very participation in the meeting with the leaders of the New Democracy and PASOK was a first retreat. SYRIZA accepted the pressure that makes it harder to form a government and tried to look "responsible for power". The letter of Alexis Tsipras to the EU was another such step backwards.

The appeals to the leadership of the EU to "rethink the whole framework of the existing strategy, since not only a threat to social cohesion and stability in Greece, but also a source of instability for the same European Union and the Eurozone" is typical. As is clear: "It's deep belief that our problem is a European crisis, and thus at European level must find the solution." If one considers that European leaders do not know how well their interests and how the Left would be convinced that we must stop the simplicity or else it will collapse the European Union and the Eurozone, As a culmination of this logic in a statement of Alexis Tsipras, they told CNBC that he will do everything not to go take Greece from the Eurozone. 


SYRIZA seems to accept that not even a direct break with the memorandum is required.
The meeting of three leaders with the President of the Republic, Papoulias asked Alexis Tsipras: "reconsideration or reversal of the current European policy?" To get the answer: "We are not talking about unilateral actions. There should be a radical change in this policy.And if you ask will tell you that we mean that we have and the Financial Stability Pact to be reconsidered. Not only we call for it, say the forces that play an important role in European affairs as the new President of France Mr. Hollande.”

The denial of "unilateral action" means that the supposed Left government  SYRIZA will not stop the Memorandum, will not stop paying the debt, but will enter into a process of discussion, hoping that Hollande, the leader of his brother's party PASOK in France, will be able to change the balance of the European Union. This is a logical center-left coalition government.

Regarding the debt, even at the elementary issue raised in the meeting of heads on whether to pay a bond that remained outside PSI and ending within days, Alexis Tsipras asked in terms of ... Papademos: "The problem with this bond has not disclosed on May 7.It was a problem long before we knew. So the Government should have a strategic plan to deal with it. Once we have a specific recommendation on the part of Mr. Papademos will be placed to deal with in substance. We have thoughts on how we can manage this. But I think useful and crucial to have the view of Prime Minister." If the Left is reluctant even to propose a default in bond Samaras even discussing whether they should be paid, then what would you do if a government was faced with the beasts of the international financial markets?

The fifth point of further proposals for SYRIZA leftist government does not even reason for partial deletion. "To establish an international commission to monitor the onerous debt and put a moratorium on repayment." . So did the issue of return of privatized public companies, something that exists in the program of SYRIZA. They began to behave like a finance minister who ignores the commitments of his party before even given a chance to sit in the ministerial chair.

The three days that the Left was investigating whether it can form a government are very instructive on how many concessions will be pressed and if so will cope. The battle with the Memorandum and frugality- no minister and prime minister will do it for us. Especially if you are so confused and scared in front of the big dilemmas opened by the crisis.