Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Against Bourgeois Charity

December 4th 2007

The commando-bouffe action don't go anywhere

In December 1997, the Comité des Sans-Emploi (CSE) undertook a strong-arm action to denounce the misery and cruelty which capitalism as a whole perpetuates. They were dissatisfied – and for good reason –with charitable organizations connected with capitalism, supposedly to help the proletariat in need. The CSE had set up a commando to requisition food from the Hotel's restaurant, a restaurant as chic as the Queen Elisabeth hotel itself, where the privileged of bourgeois society pile in to pig-out on ostentation and expensive food. Ipso Facto, this commando-bouffe attacked the bourgeoisie on their own turf by defying the legality of its repressive apparatus. While some Quebec celebrities performed as clowns, ringing the bells of La Guignolée soliciting funds in order to offer a more festive Christmas to thousands of Quebec's pauper proletarians, a hundred individuals invaded the Queen Elisabeth to take over this buffet.

Today, 10 years later, the situation has hardly changed for those living in misery. And it won't change so long as our class does not organize to abolish this cannibalistic system that is capitalism. Our class is the proletariat, the class that produces the wealth benefiting another class – the bourgeoisie – that monopolizes this wealth by a plethora of supposedly legitimate laws and regulations that it set up through its State. While a handful of individuals flaunt their obscene wealth, all over the world most human beings have no access to clean water, staple foods, or a roof over their heads…

Charity, a concept particular to the bourgeoisie, will never eliminate social inequality or poverty. As a matter of fact, charitable organizations were initially conceived by the bourgeoisie to "humanize" its barbaric system of organized plunder, while at the same time absolving the conscience of its class. As well, it would have us believe that its so-called liberal ambition of distributing the wealth is on the agenda, while throwing crumbs to the most dispossessed of our class in order to shut us up and force us to accept the fate that is our lot each hour of every day. The action undertaken by the CSE pertinently questions the legitimacy of a system based o production for profit benefiting only the bourgeoisie, which squabbles over the world's wealth. Characteristically, their disputes find expressions in bloody wars where workers die on the front lines.

Because capitalism is permanent war! At its base, it is a war between the classes that make up this system. Everywhere the bourgeoisie attacks the proletariat, by demobilizing its organization, cutting social services, reducing retirement funds, whenever not confronted directly over the cutting of our social wage. For this reason, the capitalists are united against the working class everywhere on this planet. Subsequently, capitalism is already engaged in a cannibalistic war within the global ruling class itself, we find them competing with each other to monopolize new markets, disputing the old ones, and plundering natural resources worldwide.

No, capitalism has hardly evolved toward a greater level of social welfare since the First World War, whatever its partisans might say: its cycle of crisis / war / reconstruction (a cycle which unblocks a stagnant economy) was not contained at all after 1945. On the contrary the spread of local imperialist confrontation continued throughout the Cold War, causing more death than ever, and leaving the planet with the even greater threat of total destruction through nuclear war. Moreover, since the decomposition of the Eastern Bloc in 1991, ending the post-war balance of power, the great powers have seen new prospects on the horizon and the field is open once again to divide the world's wealth.

Actions such as those undertaken by the CSE in 1997 are very legitimate but unfortunately don't go anywhere. Ten years later, this sort of action didn't make one iota of progress in the class-consciousness of the unemployed in general, and the Comité des Sans-Emplois in particular. This is evident in the commemorative nature of the commando-bouffe action. To effectively subvert capitalism while establishing the dictatorship of the proletariat articulated through workers' councils, it is necessary to build an organization capable of uniting all workers. An internationalist anti-Stalinist working class party must be built now so that the proletariat can effectively unify in a fight against its exploiters. From factory to factory, company to company, strikes must extend to all sectors of production leaving aside the union structure that no longer has the same interests as those of our class. It's the dictatorship of the proletariat based on workers' councils and committees that must emerge in the battle against capitalism – a dictatorship completely opposed to the dictatorship of party, parliamentarism and bourgeois legalism! Today the working class must take in hand the reins of its destiny by setting up its class party to enable its own conscience to emerge more sharply than ever in the struggle it has always carried out against the class that exploits it!

No compromise with the bourgeoisie! Workers, to your party, to the Revolution!

Some international communists, Montreal December 4th 2007