(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
November 28, 2010
Onto the Twelfth IMCWP in Johannesburg, Dec 3-5
R Arun Kumar
THE twelfth International Meeting of the Communist and
Workers' Parties (IMCWP) is going to be held in
In spite of the claims, the global financial crisis has not yet abated and its affects are still felt. The ruling classes who have benefited from the bailout/stimulus packages are trying to increase their profits by burdening the common people. Unemployment, accentuated by the job losses remains a major concern. So do rising inequalities and hunger.
The IMF sponsored 'austerity' packages introduced in many of the European countries have resulted in drastic cuts in the social welfare budgets. Retirement ages are increased, pension schemes 'reformed' by cutting the state share, bonuses cut, spending on healthcare and education reduced and indirect taxes are increased. IMF, which has given loans to many countries, imposed several conditions. It had urged the governments not to succumb to the protests demanding the reversal of austerity measures and for an increase of the minimum wages. IMF feels this as necessary to meet its dictates to the governments. It had directed the governments to rein in their fiscal deficit and ensure that it is within the EU limit – less than 3 per cent. Moreover, it had asked them to get the annual budget approved by it before introducing it in their respective parliaments. Accordingly, last month, the unelected EU commission presented a set of proposals to impose sanctions on member states which breached the 1997 Stability and Growth Pact. The commission said States whose deficit exceeds 3 per cent or whose debts hit 60 per cent of gross domestic product should be fined up to 0.2 per cent of their GDP.
For the past few months many countries in
The ruling classes in order to ensure that the communist parties do not gain in strength, are initiating many measures to curtail their activities. Recently a resolution was proposed for approval by the parliamentary assembly of the Council of Europe. Under the pretext of 'war against extremism' it proposes to increase assaults on the workers’ and people’s movement to dangerous levels. The resolution labels workers' struggles as 'extremism' and the people, movements and organisations who stand by the workers as 'extremists'. The resolution contains provisions to initiate action against parties and organisations which challenge the regime and power of finance capital. This resolution contributes to the creation of an even more reactionary legislative framework in Europe. Amongst the measures which are proposed concerning parties which fight the capitalist system are: prevention from participating in elections, banning state-funding to these parties and even banning their functioning. These are intended to threaten and stop people from taking part in the communists led anti-government protest demonstrations.
Taking this one step further, the government of
These measures to stifle the
voices of protest are not confined to
The failure of Democrats like Obama and various
social-democratic governments in
The economic agenda of the right-wing groups is for zero interference of the government in economic affairs – except for bailing out the bankrupt financial institutions. They are unabashedly for free trade and against state support to the social welfare measures. In this way they perfectly stand by interests of the finance capital. The ruling classes hence are not much bothered by the growth of these right-wing groups and fascist tendencies. In fact these trends are more of a threat to the working class and their struggles than the ruling classes now, as they disrupt the unity of class actions. Given the historical experiences, the people of the world and particularly the communists have to be sensitive to these threats and act to prevent their growth.
A positive feature today is, people are seeing through the neo-liberal ideology and are not taking things lying down, but coming out in struggles. Most of these struggles are of course defensive in nature and to safeguard their hard won benefits. The Communist Party of Greece (KKE) which played a prominent role in these struggles was able to increase their vote share by 3.3 per cent in the recently held elections to local bodies.
It is in this background that
the twelfth IMCWP is being held in