At an extended meeting of the National Executive Committee of the Communist Party of Ireland, on Saturday 12th November, communists from around the country gathered to discuss the deepening crisis of the system and its impact on the people, north and south.
The meeting reaffirmed the party’s view that the present crisis is part of the systemic crisis of the monopoly capitalist system, a system with a built-in cycle of boom and slump. The crisis has been made deeper and more contradictory by the dominance of finance capital, throwing forth new features in this crisis that are making it deeper and more complex, and more difficult for ruling-class forces to solve.
The continuing and growing pre-eminence of finance capital, coupled with the stagnation in manufacturing industry, has created deeper contradictions at the very heart of the system, as each attempted solution creates new problems and exposes further weaknesses.
The complete lack of any coherent strategy on the part of the political leaders of monopoly capitalism at the recent G20 summit meeting in relation to the global systemic crisis shows that they have few, if any, answers. The continuing and deepening crisis within the European Union, centred on the euro and debt, and the imposition of socialised corporate debt on working people, appears to be their only answer.
The virtual coup d’état by German monopoly capital has secured the ousting of two already compliant governments, replacing them with even more compliant governments headed by technocrats: the former vice-president of the European Central Bank, Lukas Papademos, in Greece and the former EU commissioner Mario Monti in Italy. These individuals’ loyalties are to the ECB and European monopoly capital rather than to the citizens of their countries.
This development has exposed one of the many falsehoods that have been constructed, that democracy and capitalism are synonymous. The setting aside of their democratic processes has opened up a new field in the struggle against the European Union and reaffirms the long-held view of Irish communists regarding the anti-democratic nature, values and strategy at the core of the EU integration process.
The assaults on the democratic will of the Greek and Italian people are among the first public manifestations and a real expression of the EU corporatist state now under construction. The reality that bourgeois democracy will be truncated to meet the needs of capital when in crisis is becoming more open and visible.
The solutions presented by the EU and by the Irish and British governments are for rescuing capitalism as a system, attacking the trade
union movement and rolling back the advances made by the working class during the twentieth century. The ruling class want their austerity measures to be permanent and irreversible.
The drive for privatisation is to narrow the influence and role of public capital and to open up new investment opportunities for a stagnant global economy in the interest of private corporate capital.
This is a struggle that is both national and international, linking up with the growing struggles of workers throughout the European Union and globally. The defeat of this strategy requires a resolute response from all workers’ organisations and democratic forces. Workers must not only struggle to defend the economic and social gains made in the twentieth century but must now also be the defenders of democracy and national independence.
The CPI restates its view that there is no fairer or better capitalism to be resurrected or built from this crisis but rather that it is in resisting the assault of capital that new forces can be drawn into the resistance and into the struggle for a new, socialist Ireland. The anarchy, avarice, exploitation, individualism, selfishness, consumer-fetishism and destruction of the global environment can be overcome only by working-class forces leading the struggle for socially planned economic, social and cultural development, nationally and globally. We need a greater role for working people in all aspects of life—economic, political, social, and cultural.
We call for support for the strike called for Northern Ireland on 30 November and express our solidarity with British workers, who will also be on strike on the same day. Workers in the Republic should come out and support the pre-budget demonstration called by the Dublin Council of Trade Unions on 26 November as well as the protest called by community organisations for 3 December.
The policies being imposed by the Irish Government, in alliance with the “troika,” have to be resisted. We need to bring real and meaningful power into the hands of the people. This will come about only from a radical realignment of Irish politics and the sweeping away of the moribund economic and political structures that are now incapable of meeting the needs of our people.
We call on left and progressive forces to demand:
a referendum on the socialised corporate debt;
resistance to the privatisation of public companies and services;
and the building of an alternative economic and social strategy that includes: a break with the euro, the establishment of controls on capital, an all-Ireland economic and social strategy, greater regulation and control of essential areas of the economy, democratic planning and accountability, and the nationalisation of all natural resources.
COMMUNIST PARTY OF IRELAND James Connolly House, 43 East Essex Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2 12 November 2011