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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

October 20: Smash the NACT attack


Defend Union Rights!
Defend workers: jobs, wages and
conditions!
Defend the dole: access to
unemployment benefit!
The strategy of the union officials (leaders) has not
been to defeat this law, only to complain about it.
Existing union members who have collective
agreements can be protected against the 90day Act
when negotiations for the new collective agreement
come up to get agreements that bind employers to not
use the 90day clause, the sick leave provision, and that
allow union access. Unions officials have had their
power to force employers to the bargaining table on
these items weakened by employment contracts act
and the employment relations act is little better. This is also sensible since any employed workers can
“Good faith” is a fluffy set of handcuffs that bind become unemployed at the whim of restructure or a
unions into endless negotiations when employers do not new employer using the 90 day law. For full union
budge in negotiations. The ERA already binds union membership rights to unemployed workers: currently
rights to stop strikes by making them illegal, and it bans only the Unite union has specific unemployed workers
political strikes – exactly what would be needed to stop rights to be in the union. Even this has been under
the 90day law. threat. We are active in Unite union to protect
unemployed workers as in the constitution and to
…the next step maintain the participation of unemployed workers in
Unite – against attempts by the leaders of the “Unite
Blacklist employers who use 90day Act! workers union” branch who moved to take unemployed
workers out of the Unite constitution.
Protect all workers, employed,
unemployed and beneficiaries! If workers are sacked or made redundant for any
reason, they should have continued rights to full union
Picket WINZ offices if anyone sacked membership of their union –at 0 or nominal dues.
under the 90day, until they grant Unemployed workers need protection in the
benefit! constitutions of all the unions: Maori, pacific, gay,
women, youth and migrant workers should all have
No WINZ penalties for un(der)employed rights within the unions which empower participation at
workers who refuse jobs without all levels of the union decision making, unemployed
workers need similar rights. For rights as full members
protection from 90 day Act! to access resources and participate, including the right
Picket capitalists who use 90day Act to meet separately (caucus) and to raise agenda items
until they stop! & amendments.
Smash the 90day Act! For union dues to be scaled based on income: earn
Join Solidarity! (website and fb page) more and pay more; earn less and pay less from for
example no dues below a wage of $10,000 pa
graduating up to $40 a week plus for incomes over
Protect the most vulnerable $100,000 pa. For the CTU Council of Trade Union
Benefits are so low that unemployed are forced to take redistribution of union’s income from the “rich” unions
any work in order to survive – lowering wages and to the “poor” based on the average wages of the
conditions at the workplace. Unless unemployed are union’s membership for numbers of members; in order
protected by employed workers, they are vulnerable to to fund organisers of unemployed workers.
undermining wages and conditions and being brought in
as scabs. An injury to one is an injury to all. Marx
Behind this governments offensive
described unemployed workers as capitalism’s “reserve This is an attack by the National-Act-Maori government
army of labour”; meaning capitalists will use the on the working class. They have attacked the whole
unemployed to fill any gaps in workforce as they want. working class with the introduction of GST reducing the
The way for organised workers to protect against this is buying power of our wages and given tax cuts for the
to unite employed and unemployed in the same rich. They are attacking the quality of education at all
union(s).
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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

levels. They have health services focussed on waiting parasites on the working class, giving as little to
times not on quality care, while cutting costs. They are workers as they are forced to, while keeping their real
beneficiary bashing and kneecapping unions’ power, role for the bosses – as the brakes on working class
with this 90day law. We need the whole working class struggle.
to unite the fights that are occurring in many areas into
one class struggle against the capitalist class. These Replace union officials that collaborate with the
many attacks on the working class need a class wide bosses. Union resources should be accountable to the
response – using pickets, strikes and occupations to stop membership. Fighting democratic unions must be based
profits & build class solidarity that meets the needs of on maximum independence from the ruling class and its
workers. government.

Lessons of the Fight against the Employment Working class solidarity


Contracts Act We support Solidarity/Organise as a network of union
The ECA passed in 1991 severely weakened the unions. members who take action to stop the employers who
They lost ½ the membership from 600,000 union use the 90day Act. Forced labour is what beneficiaries
members it dropped to 300,000 and total number of will be if this government cuts benefits of those who
employed has increased. Union leaders sold out the refuse ‘90day’ jobs. We call for PSA members (WINZ
fight against the Act. In 1991 Ken Douglas (then CTU workers) to not force beneficiaries into jobs with 90
president) justified their sellout, saying unions will still days of no rights and to grant benefits for anyone
be here to negotiate. Peter Harris for the CTU (1996) sacked under a 90 day rule: without stand-down and
justified their mis-leadership again, and presented this back dated to day of sacking. Take action based on the
to the 1997 CTU conference. That CTU balance sheet workers who can stop the flow of profits for the
has been put online at capitalist class.
http://workerspartynz.files.wordpress.com/2010/08/ct
u.pdf . • For unemployed workers protection in
Unions have been pinned down under the capitalists’ solidarity with employed workers!
labour law: there is tight control of the union officials. • Form worker activist networks as a left
wing within the unions!
The main lesson to take from the fight against the ECA
was that it takes the fight of ordinary union members
• Turn lockouts into strikes, and strikes
to put up a real fight, and force unions leaders to show into occupations of worksites, and set up
their true colours either to do what the workers need workers control of each worksite,
or to openly sell out the workers interests. Ordinary through elected (and recallable)
union members put working class solidarity into the worksite leaders!
unions.
• For Workers Councils: local councils of
Link to Workers Power “Smash the Act” pamphlet in our workers to run the towns and cities,
archive. Compare this to Stalinist left Don Franks made up of representatives elected (and
http://workerspartynz.files.wordpress.com/2010/08/so recallable) by the local worksites. For
me-relections-on-the-eca-introduction.doc workers defence committees. For rank
http://libcom.org/files/The%20Myth%20of%20Passivity1
.pdf - anarchist review of 1991 ECA fight (published
and file committees in the armed forces.
2004) and Maori (Tino Rangatiratanga) and benefit cuts
Under capitalism the bosses’ labour law is a
fights.
tool in their attack on workers – to make
CTU (Council of Trade Unions or Collaborators workers pay for capitalists falling profits. Only
Taming Unions?) the complete replacement of capitalism
through a socialist revolution can meet the
The union leadership is in “partnership” with the needs of workers.
bosses, this is class collaboration. They also are taming
the membership by dragging us into the same rotten
partnership. Tamed unions are the life support for the • For an indefinite General strike to
Labour Party and so long as this collaborating defeat the bourgeois regime and win
leadership runs the unions, workers will be sent to vote workers power.
for a worker friendlier parliament, which will not meet • For a Workers Government to plan a
our needs. socialist economy. (Only by the above
Failed union leaders who do not fight for the needs of three demands being met can a real
workers, back the Labour Party, and argue for working workers government be formed – ie. not
people to support it as a “lesser evil” than the others. through a vote every 3 yrs).
Labour governments have continued to betray the • For a Socialist Federation of the Pacific!
needs of the working class. The CTU leadership is as
rotten as the Labour Party leadership that they
continue to support. Rotten since they both are
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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

Actors stand up to union bashing


The Hobbit ‘blue’ shows us how the global crisis is impoverished workers who have not experienced big
impacting on NZ in such as way as to reveal its semi- defeats and who are prepared to fight.
colonial subservience to Australian, US and Chinese
imperialism. As the NZ The second anti-union
bosses bend over forwards group is made up of the
to attract investment in NZ small bosses and their
they are forcing down costs professional hangers’ on in
especially wage costs. That the law, management,
is why the NACTs are hell media and advertising,
bent to destroy the power whose incomes depend on
of the unions to fight this trickle down profits from
‘race to the bottom’. The international capital making
NACTs are shit scared that mega profits from NZ.
the 20,000 who rallied
against their new 90 day But the biggest section is
fire at will Bill will be seen made up of the lumpen or
as ‘labour instability’ and a backward layers of the
turnoff by foreign investment. This is why the NZ working class who have
Actors Equity has been turned into a whipping child been de-unionised since the onset of Rogernomics
to discredit and bash the unions and ram through a and the 1991 ECA, combined with the big majority
model law to outlaw collective action. that have never been unionised in every sector of
the economy. Many of these are the owner-operators
CTU head Helen Kelly stood up to the union bashing or self-employed such as the contractors in the film
of Peter Jackson and the NACTs desperate to industry and in all those related industries which
mobilise the mindless mass pulverised by the MSM benefit from film making in NZ, especially
purveyors of lies. When 20,000 workers rallied construction and tourism.
against the latest round of NACT attacks (90 fire at
will, on sick leave, on union access) designed to Two years into its term the NACTs are running out of
smash union power in the workplace, Actors Equity ideas. It has rushed through legislation under urgency
was made into a scapegoat by the billionaire film to pay off its backers but now the ACT party has
maker Jackson and his backers Warner Bros., for imploded in scandal and fraud. The Maori Party has
asking for a basic industrial agreement. This has the nothing to show for its existence. Hone Harawira is
effect of further polarising the country between a breaking ranks over the neo-colonial blanket thrown
growing section of the working class that this over the F&S. The bankers club has lost direct
standing up to the NACTs attempts to screw control over Auckland and will try to retain it by
maximum profits out of NZ workers, and that lumpen controlling the CCOs. The Labour Party takes a slight
section that sees the unions as the cause of all its ills left deviation back to Keynes. Then 20,000 workers
and identifies not with organised labour but with the say NO to the 90 day fire at will. Hobbiton blows up
petty bourgeois middle and Key promises the
class social climbers. Hollywood money moguls to
keep the unions out of their
The former is the unionised industry.
base that is recovering
from 30 years of attacks The class divide becomes
and declining membership more polarised week by week
and reviving as the militant proving that the class war will
layer that is resisting intensify and become full-on
NACTs cuts in jobs, wages in the next year leading up to
and social spending. This the election in 2011. The
includes the teachers, right has the advantage of
doctors, radiographers, students, etc all engaged in concentrated power and organisation. If the left is to
or preparing for protest or industrial action. But the win it has to organise the mass majority from the
really scary spectre of Karl Marx giving the bankers ground up based on the renewed vitality and power
nightmares are the big battalions of low paid workers of the unions. Workers need to rebuild the unions as
in SFWU, UNITE, NDU and AWU who organise low paid fighting, democratic organisations capable of
service workers and are heavily youthful, female and throwing out the treacherous collaborationist union
Maori and Pasifica in membership. The 20,000 who leaders, and building workers councils and defence
rallied against the NACTs attacks on October 20 were committees as a power base to launch a general
overwhelmingly made up of low paid, casualised, strike to defeat the NACT regime and open the road
to a Workers and working Farmers Government.

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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

number of cops have been killed while engaged in the


Brief Stuff surveillance or arrest of minor drug dealers or gang
members. Yet if cannabis was legal there would be no
October 15 news gangs, there would be no violent crime to pay for drug
Tena koutou, we send out irregular updates on the habits, or call to arm the police.
campaign to support the people arrested in the state
Minister ‘Crusher’ Collins (she wants boy racers cars to
terror raids in Aotearoa (New Zealand) on 15th October
be confiscated and crushed) says that police chases of
2007.
young people who don’t stop is OK even though there
Although charges under the Terrorism Suppression
have been 16 deaths in the last 5 years. If you speed
Act were never laid, 18 people are still facing charges
you will die is OK. Why not carry bazookas in police cars
under the Arms Act and 5 are charged with being
to take them out before they can endanger innocent
members of an organised criminal group. At the
third parties? Most kids who joy ride are boozed up and
moment, the starting date for the trial is May 2011
risking death. Youth need booze to blot out the lies and
(subject to change). DROP THE CHARGES! October 15
greed and power of the bankers and their stooges who
marks the third anniversary of the State Terror raids.
dominate this right-wing Government. Where is the
We wish you a cop- and terror-free day. The struggle
penalty for the booze merchants? No penalty but
continues... The www.October15thSolidarity.info website is
plaudits, knighthoods and top jobs like that of the new
regularly updated.
CEO of the Auckland super city, who goes from top
booze pusher to top bureaucrat tasked to implement
Socialise Drugs Rodney Hides plan to hijack and privatise the $28
Simon Prast actor, and one of the losing candidates for billion of Auckland public assets.
Mayor of the new Auckland Supercity, called for the
legalisation of methamphetamine (P). Prohibition So not only is Crusher Collins unconcerned about the
causes crime and death and destruction. The legal drug number of kids dying in police chases, she favours
alcohol kills thousands every year. The criminalisation firearms in locked containers in all police cars. The
of much less harmful drugs such as cannabis and P leads Police Association want all police carrying pistols in
to numerous violent confrontations with addicts and holsters. After the introduction of Tasers last year as
innocent bystanders as well as cop deaths. Recently an the alternative to firearms, the ‘lock em up and throw
addict died in an Auckland chemist shop after a tussle away the key’ rednecks have got a government that
with the owner. Legalisation removes the causes of drives up the crime rate and creates prisons not jobs. It
gang crime and the risk of unnecessary deaths. needs a crime wave and a rabid armed police response
to divert attention away from its attacks on workers to
“The primary goal of the international drug control force them to pay for their bosses’ crisis.
regime, as set forth in the preamble of the Single http://tumeke.blogspot.com/2010/10/national-to-arm-police-now-
Convention on Narcotic Drugs (1961), is the “health and garrett-has.html
welfare of mankind”, but the current approach to
controlling drug use and possession works against that ACC sexual abusers outed!
aim. Widespread implementation of interventions that David Rankin, former ACC manager, has revealed what
reduce harms associated with drug use — harm- everyone knew, that the NACT government was refusing
reduction initiatives — and of decriminalization of sexual abuse victims counselling to save money. Result
certain laws governing drug control would improve the untold suffering and at least two suicides. To do this
health and welfare of people who use drugs and the they had to change the rules and make sexual abuse a
general population demonstrably”. UN rapporteur on mental illness to qualify for ACC funding.
Right to Health. http://www.humanrightsanddrugs.org/?p=1217
In California use of cannabis will be legalised if a vote Now it turns out that they used the research of
in November succeeds. Individual production in small Auckland University professor Felicity Goodyear-Smith
gardens 25 feet square will also become decriminalised. notorious for publicly calling sexual abuse counselling a
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/03/25/health/main6331419.s ‘scam’. Goodyear-Smith is the daughter-in-law of Bert
html Potter the Centrepoint guru jailed as a paedophile.
Rankin knew her attitude to sexual abuse but didn’t
This would be a move towards the state regulating and
think that this was relevant as she was a scientist! So
taxing production of recreational drugs and using the
Goodyear-Smith devised the test to assess sexual abuse
money to rehabilitate the social harm caused by
as to whether it was ‘mental injury’ or not, which was
addiction. It also removes the pretext that the
then used to replace the ‘Massey University guidelines’.
capitalist class needs to criminalise a large section of
the working class allowing the police to ride roughshod
Mental health is already hugely underfunded, so it is to
over basic individual freedoms. The legalising of hard
the credit of all those who responded in horror to this
drugs would remove the main pretext to arm the cops.
ACC cost cutting and the price paid by those denied
treatment, that the ACC Minister Nick Smith has been
Arming the cops forced to reverse the ACC policy and re-instate at least
The reason that the NACTs are calling for the arming of some minimal counselling for sexual abuse victims.
the cops, cheered on by the Police Association, is that a http://tumeke.blogspot.com/2010/09/denying-rape-victims-
counseling-all.html

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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

Capitalists take F&S; with Maori Party consent.


The Maori party have failed to repeal the foreshore and seabed law – they have only re-named it.
Parliament is a blind alley for Maori resistance to colonisation by capitalism. The ‘Marine and Coastal
Area (Takutai Moana) Bill’ is nothing but theft of the foreshore and seabed by another name. Under this
new law the governments ‘ownership’ is not named as ownership but ‘the right to govern’. This is just
as good as ownership for the capitalist class, since it includes all the ownership rights that the ‘crown’
usually gives itself when they steal something.

The government can keep selling mining rights and The formation of the Maori Party (to defend Maori
selling fishing quotas and fish farming zones. All these rights to Foreshore & Seabed) brought Maori with both
capitalist practices carry on with no reference to the capitalist and working class orientation. An ‘across
local Maori. The government continues to sell off oil class’ party; has capitalist interest in ownership for
and mineral exploration licences to multi-national profits and capitalist development plans, as well as
capitalists. Petrobras just gained a five year working class Maori support.
exploratory license for oil and gas in the Raukumara
Basin by the NZ Govt. The license starts from just 4 kms Maori Party serves Tribal capitalists
offshore and goes out to 110 km (and covers 12,330 sq
km). Petrobras has a rotten record with oil spills - and Radical Lawyer, Annette Sykes condemns the Maori
oil rig explosions with workers deaths. Party for being the mouthpiece of the ‘Iwi Leadership
Group’ which is a euphemism for the tribal leaders who
Customary Land Rights use treaty settlements to boost an emerging class of
Maori capitalists at the expense of Maori workers. This
Oh yes there is a pressure relief valve for Maori is clearly seen in the policies that the Maori Party has
struggles to be channelled back into court processes to supported in its
claim ‘customary rights’. All the burden of proof will deal with the
be on Maori. What a set up! At great legal expense, National Party and
time and energy; some Maori may be able to regain Act Party. They
some minimal level of ‘customary’ rights. have kept a right
(http://thestandard.org.nz/on-the-foreshore/).This is wing government
based on the Australian precedent that requires tribes in power that is
to prove uninterrupted occupation of the land in attacking Maori
question. Of course this is an impossible test for most workers jobs,
tribes who had their living standards,
land confiscated or housing, health
were forced to sell and education,
it. and building more
jails, in exchange
Meanwhile private for a deal to get
owners who have the right to Iwi
inherited or bought exploit the
what was once Maori resources of the
land don’t have to F&S to boost Tribal capitalism.
prove anything. The
capitalist state The majority of Maori are working class who have to
protects private work to survive, while the tribal elites have capitalist
property, their rights plans for treaty settlement moneys. Working class Maori
to own bits of the have an interest in fighting for the return of the F&S as
foreshore are the common property of Maori as the guardians of the
guaranteed. land for the whole working class. Non-Maori workers
have in interest in nationalising all private property
Only one Maori Party MP, Hone Harawira, has stood up (not communal land) leasing back land to small
to reject this law. It was much more than the lack of a farmers, but expropriating the large holdings of
court option for Maori (under the Labour Party’s capitalists as the basis of agricultural communes.
‘Foreshore and Seabed Act’), which provoked the Hikoi
on Parliament. The kaupapa was for Maori control, and Organise to occupy stolen foreshore!
against government theft! Occupy stolen lands!
Occupy fish farms, drilling rigs and ships!
The Labour Government used the Foreshore & Seabed Organise to unite with the workers on these
law to block a Nelson Iwi from starting its own developments to control production and demand
capitalist development; a mussel farm (in their safety improvements!
traditional area). Even with customary rights Maori For a Socialist Aotearoa!
could be excluded from developing fish farming. For a Socialist Federation of the Pacific!
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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

Capitalist Crisis Shakes Christchurch


In the ‘shock’ (media drama) of post earthquake Christchurch, the capitalist class did not pause in their
attack on the working class. They abolished Environment Canterbury to get water rights for dairy
farmers. They paid out $1-7 billion to the rich predators who flocked to South Canterbury Finance to be
in on the kill. Now the government has ‘Nationalised’ the Christchurch earthquake. The NACT
government passed, with the support of ‘opposition’ parties, a law that gives Gerry Brownlee
dictatorial powers in Christchurch. This is a dangerous law, it has even been criticised by the Law
Society. They say it gives too much power to one person, without checks and balances of the usual legal
and parliamentary reviews. In fact they called it a ‘Henry the 8th Law’.

What government has been able to do, in midst of the Tsunami and in New Orleans after cyclone Katrina. In
media hype of the earthquake, is push through the Sri Lanka a ‘task force to rebuild the nation’ had
‘Canterbury Earthquake Restoration Law’. While the unbridled powers. Aid money (and World Bank and IMF
title is sensible sounding, its bullshit - the reality is the money) went into superhighways, deep water fishing
threats are in the detail. This law gives deputy PM ports (for international trawlers) and privatising
Gerry Brownlee unlimited beachfront lands for tourist resorts,
powers, with no rights of appeal. while fishing villages were
Capitalism (through Brownlee) relocated inland 3kms.
has armed itself with powers to
override any laws they want The capitalist class use the ‘shock’
(such as the Resource of a disaster to attack working
Management Act, industrial law, people when we are more
or giving building contracts and vulnerable and less organised and
council lands to National party able to fightback. The workers
supporters). This includes the big suffer post-traumatic shock and
bosses that back the NACT take some time to see what is
government like Fletcher happening to them. Klein says this
Challenge that won the contract is standard practice for the neo-
to oversee the rebuilding of all liberal bosses, but it’s obvious that
damaged dwellings. They will the onset of the global crisis in 2007
authorise all tradespeople has motivated the bosses to move
wanting to work on this even more quickly and ruthlessly.
rebuilding project. The big
truckers are notorious backers of Capitalism’s crisis of falling profits
NACT. So Brownlee has allowed is so profound that they want to buy
super-sized trucks on road – never and take profits from council
mind the roads and bridges services such as water/wastewater.
weren’t built for them. They support privatising council services and
construction for ownership and profits to private
Brownlee can keep the army in Christchurch for as long capitalists. Developers take a fancy to levelled sections
as he wants to keep the working class locked out, while for rebuilding more intensive / high profit,
the Brownlee Tsunami will level the real estate. He has redevelopments. The Canterbury earthquake provided a
allowed demolition of ‘heritage’ status buildings – perfect excuse for the capitalist class to rush through
leaving a blank page for the maximum profit a building the Brownlee law and attack the working class under
developer can squeeze from the land. the guise of a civil defence emergency.

When homeowners asked if the Government would bail For a Workers Council of Otautahi/Christchurch
out those who didn’t have insurance Prime Minister Key to control of the rebuilding.
said that would be moral hazard. Nobody would insure
their homes if they were guaranteed a payout. He was
No privatisation or contracting out of council
so class fixated he didn’t see the obvious irony that he services.
had just bailed out investors in the bankrupt SCF No PPPs (public private partnerships).
company to the tune of $1.7 billion! When there was a For workers control of consents to rebuild.
human earthquake of enraged citizens, Key changed his No rezoning of land use or intensity.
mind and said he would look at compensation. Occupy against evictions.
The response of the NACT government to the
Occupy council property threatened with
earthquake is like what Naomi Klein described in her privatisation.
book The Shock Doctrine: The rise of disaster Unions bans on reconstruction without local
capitalism. Parallels with Christchurch are seen in her workers consents.
pages about Sri Lanka after the boxing day (2004)
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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

Education ‘Reforms’ pave way for privatisation


Part Two: Secondary Teachers’ Struggles
What is the crisis in education? It’s the crisis that the bosses don’t want to pay with their taxes
that are a drain on their profits, because they don’t need universal, compulsory, state funded
education to produce enough workers, when it is cheaper to resort to funding cuts, user pays,
performance pay for teachers, and to get the private sector to run schools. The trend towards
privatisation began with Labour’s Tomorrow’s Schools in the 1980’s and National’s bulk funding
during the 1990’s. It has been given new life by the current National/Act Government which wants
to introduce performance pay for teachers and to turn our schools into Public Private Partnerships.
In the last issue we looked at cuts in publicly funded early
childhood and adult education, and at how National
Standards at primary schools could lead to league tables
and increasing inequality between schools. We wrote about
the struggle of the New Zealand Educational Institute, Te
Riu Roa, (NZEI) the primary and early childhood teachers’
and support staff’s union, to stop National Standards.

This time it is the secondary teachers in the Post Primary


Teachers Association (PPTA) who are on the front lines of
defending public education; demanding decent pay for
teachers, and safe quality learning and teaching conditions.

With the appointment of Rodney Hide from the Act Party as


Associate Minister of Education the need for a fight back to
save public education is stronger than ever. In the long
run, this can only be achieved by abolishing the capitalist
system altogether. Capitalism will always try to exploit its privatisation agenda. This includes an education staffing
human creativity to maximise private profits rather than budget cut of $95 million over four years in the 2009 budget,
meeting social needs, especially so in times of crisis such as at the same time as increasing spending on private schools by
today. Education is no exception. $36 million.
http://www.nzei.org.nz/site/nzeite/files/misc%20documents
/Facts%20about%20NZ%20and%20education.pdf
Secondary Teachers Strike for Public Education
The PPTA points out on its website http://www.ppta.org.nz
After months of unsuccessful struggle for improved wages and that teachers cannot carry out the personalised learning
conditions, 95% of the members of the Post Primary Teachers’ programmes required by the NCEA with huge class sizes. Most
Association (PPTA), the secondary teachers’ union, voted in classrooms are designed for twenty five students, yet most
favour of a strike. On 15th September, PPTA teachers went on year nine and year ten classes exceed that number. In some
a one day strike for a 4% salary increase, reduced class sizes, classrooms students even have to sit on the window sill.
a safe school environment, better teacher recruitment and Schools are being forced to fund extra teachers out of their
retention, and an end to claw backs from the Ministry of operations grants in order to try to bring class sizes down.
Education. Around 10% of teachers are hired directly by the boards.
Teachers rallied in centres across the country. 1,000 teachers The PPTA points out that large sized classes are better suited
in Wellington marched to Parliament, and 2,500 teachers in the factory method of education. This is not supposed to be
Auckland rallied in Albert Part then marched down to Queen modern education practice. High class sizes create enormous
St., grinding it to a halt on their way to Queen Elizabeth stress for teachers and students, reducing teacher retention
Square. The one-day strike was the first in eight years for the and student engagement. They are a health and safety risk,
Post Primary Teachers Association (PPTA) and it affected risking increased violence and disruption at school, and even
about 280,000 students from more than 450 secondary and impacting upon problems such as teen pregnancies and
intermediate schools. suicides.
The PPTA asked Boards of Trustees to donate their missed The PPTA has said enough is enough on class size, time for the
day’s pay to the Canterbury Earthquake The government is government to step up.
offering teachers only a 1.5% salary increase. PPTA President http://www.ppta.org.nz/index.php/safety-in-school.
Kate Gainsford said that remuneration alone would not solve Academic John Hattie stunned teachers in 2007 when he
the pressure put on teachers by growing classes and a bigger suggested that class sizes were not a significant factor in
workload under the NCEA system. Teachers, who are learning. He said instead that the main factor was the
required to redesign new standards, have described their relationship between the student and teacher. This may well
current workload as “insane”.( Teachers reject pay offer; be so, but how is a student to develop such a relationship in a
vote to strike, Isaac Davison ,New Zealand Herald 14/9/10) huge class. The PPTA is adamant that the prevalence of over-
size classes in our secondary schools is at odds with the needs
New Zealand teachers are among the lowest paid in the of both students and teachers in today’s classrooms. The
OECD, yet John Key is “disappointed” that they are not biggest truths are not hard to grasp. The fewer students a
prepared to accept the “real word” of public sector low pay teacher has to deal with at once, the more likely he or she is
and cuts in order to help pay for the capitalist crisis and fund to reach all of them. Research both nationally and
8
Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

internationally proves that the smaller the class size the http://awsm.org.nz/?p=467#teachers www.ppta.org.nz
better the students’ attendance, the longer they stay in
school, the more likely they leave with qualifications, and Media Criminalise Teachers
earn more in later life. In short, they become more interested
in learning and engaging constructively in the world. During this period of teacher activism, the media responded
with enthusiasm to the Ministers attempts to ‘criminalise’
However the Minister of Education Anne Tolley is not listening teachers. The Sunday Star Times wrote a number of frantic
and Bill English says the PPTA is wasting its time as the articles on “criminal teachers” reaching its peak with the
minister has no money to give them , indicating that National front page story: “Criminals in our classrooms” “the story the
is not interested in investing in education during their Teachers Council did not want told” followed on page two by:
capitalist crisis no matter what the long term costs to society “Minister wants to know why criminals are still teaching”,
of refusing to do so. and: “Experts should monitor teachers, says Professor”.
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&obj (Sunday Star Times 29.8.2010 )
ectid=10676529 )
Instead of rejecting this as an attempt by the Minister to
The government seems incredulous that secondary teachers, discredit the teachers’ campaign, the Teachers’ Council went
unlike nurses, junior doctors, policemen, civil servants, have on the defensive, sending an email around to all registered
not buckled under and agreed to pay for the capitalist crisis teachers, explaining that the proportion of teachers with
with substandard wages and conditions. criminal convictions was tiny.

Mrs Tolley attended the PPTA national conference on 28 This media assault on the Teachers’ Council is ironic
September. On the TV3 News, she looked worried and asked considering that in July we heard that the Teachers’ Council
the teachers to return to negotiations but she didn’t offer had de-registered a pre-school teacher as an “unfit role
anything and refused to rule out a lock out if the dispute model” who had not declared earnings while on a benefit,
continues. (28/9/10, PPTA prepare for lock out, RadioNZ and and training to be an ECE teacher. The defendant said “I
TV3 news ). didn’t defraud/steal out of greed, I was doing it to survive
and provide for my daughter. I am sorry.”
The PPTA has emphasised that safety and learning conditions http://www.nzherald.co.nz/elizabeth-
are equally as important as remuneration but the government binning/news/article.cfm?a_id=163&objectid=10660885
has made no offers to
reduce class sizes. On the Here we have a single
contrary-it’s planning to lift parent who had made a
the current limit on class supreme effort to overcome
sizes. The PPTA originally social discrimination, to
said that they were in for qualify and practice as a
the long haul with more teacher and to support her
strikes planned. However child; and the Teachers’
they have since pulled back Council ruined her chance
from full day strikes and for life to do this, even
only plan to do eight partial though she posed no danger
strikes where they refuse to children whatsoever.
to teach students at certain Despite its willingness to
levels, and do not attend issue such harsh and unjust
teacher only days, or decisions, the Teachers’
meetings after 5pm. Council is under enormous
pressure from the media to
At the time of writing the de-register more teachers.
PPTA has called off industrial action for the rest of the week
from October 13th, because on the 12th the Government The Teachers’ Council is in a dual role, being appointed by
promised to make an offer that would be “worth their while”. the Government yet supposedly representing teachers. It
However, after a day of negotiations the PPTA President said recently made itself unpopular by issuing a huge hike in
that this claim was “astonishing”. Nevertheless, negotiations teacher registration fees. Kate Gainsford sees the Teachers’
continue this week with the PPTA planning to re-commence Council as a potential ally of teachers, and notes that it
industrial action next week if no satisfactory agreement is opposed performance pay and new government plans for the
reached. initial education of teachers. She says: “The question is how
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&obj to move the council away from being an arm of the
ectid=10680303 government into a genuinely teacher-led body.”
http://www.ppta.org.nz/index.php/annual-conference/1432-
The PPTA has strong positions on many broad issues, including pres-address-annconf2010
opposition to national standards, Public Private Partnerships,
and the 90 Day Act. The one day strike is a great start, but The fight to defend free, compulsory, universal,
stronger sustained action is almost certainly needed if the public education from Early Childhood to Adult
teachers’ demands are to be met, The Aotearoa Workers Education is only just beginning. The NACTs attempts
Solidarity Movement says that the leadership of the PPTA is
to privatise education and cut state spending as a
looking for negotiated settlement with the Government, and
are in danger of compromising too much. They believe that drain on bosses’ profits will meet stiff resistance as
teachers may need to take direct action. They talk about the the unions and wider working class mobilises to fight
need for solidarity with members of other unions and for their basic right to a fully funded public
community networks, whereas we would say that the old education! Watch this space!
demand for One Education Union, under the control of the
rank and file, is the logical demand to raise.

9
Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

The DRC caught between the US and China


The UN Mapping Report on genocide in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) released on October 1
http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Countries/ZR/DRC_MAPPING_REPORT_FINAL_EN.pdf highlights the
basic causes of the more recent wars that have raged over the Congo’s rich resources since its
independence in 1960. The report focuses on the period from 1993 to 2003 in the East of DRC, and
argues that Rwandan forces were among those of 7 armies from different countries that have been
active in the DRC to illegally exploit the mineral riches. The report has been toned down because of the
objections of Rwanda to its description of the genocide of Hutus in the DRC over this period.
http://english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2010/10/2010101129611907.html It is clear that behind these
wars is the scramble by a number of imperialist powers and their African proxy armies for control of
the huge mineral wealth of the DRC. Historically European powers and the US have been the major
imperialist partners. While Chinese companies have long been beneficiaries of the ‘informal’ mining of
Coltan, cassiterite (tin), gold and diamond wealth of the East of DRC, today China has become the main
official imperialist partner of the Kabila regime in taking over copper production in Katanga. The
situation is ripe for more explosive confrontations between the militias aligned to the interests of
Chinese and US imperialism over the exploitation of the DRCs mineral wealth.
As the author of the Mapping Report points out, the What underlies these decades of violence in the
focus on war crimes and genocide in this report DRC?
confirms what has been known for years: “The most
serious and systematic crimes are placed firmly on the In his response to the release of the Mapping Report,
doorstep of Paul Kagame’s Rwanda. The report not only DRC Justice Minister Luzolo Bambi points to the
mentions dozens of occurrences of war crimes and competition between Western companies for natural
crimes against humanity, but also points at resources as the basic causes of the violence described
“circumstances and facts from which a court could infer in the Report, but claims that: “The mapping project
the intention to destroy the Hutu ethnic group in the does not take into account the criminal responsibility of
DRC in part”, a reference to the genocide convention. all those corporations, multinationals and other
A UN investigative team already came to a similar international consortia
conclusion in 1998: “The of companies which
systematic massacre of have funded and
those (Hutu refugees) continue to fund the
remaining in DRC was an war in DRC...These
abhorrent crime against contractors and
humanity, but the supporters of war and
underlying rationale for death must also have a
the decision is material place reserved in a
to whether these killings criminal trial.”
constituted genocide,
that is, a decision to Bloomberg reports:
eliminate, in part, the “Congo holds 4 percent
Hutu ethnic group”. The of global copper
psychologically charged reserves, is among the
discussion of the ‘g world’s largest
word’ is not that producers of cobalt and
relevant: the other documented crimes are serious industrial diamonds, and is Africa’s largest producer of
enough to warrant the prosecution of suspects. The tin ore, known as cassiterite, according to the U.S.
report does not even address the tens of thousands of Geological Survey’s website.
civilians killed by the RPF in Rwanda in 1994 and
between 1997 and 1998. In 2002, a UN report on the exploitation of natural
resources in Congo found that 85 companies may have
Besides Rwanda, many other regional players were violated the Organization for Economic Cooperation and
responsible for serious human rights violations: the Development’s Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises
armed forces of Congo, Angola, Burundi and Uganda are by supporting the war directly or indirectly. The
mentioned, but also unofficial armed groups ranging guidelines are non-binding principles and standards for
from ethnic militias to rebel movements from Congo the behaviour of companies from OECD countries.
and neighbouring countries. Apart from a few militia Several mineral traders on that list, including U.S.-
leaders from Ituri and former rebel leader Jean-Pierre based Cabot Corp. and U.K.-based Amalgamated Metals
Bemba, no one has ever been prosecuted.” Corp. Plc, have denied they were doing business in
http://www.rnw.nl/africa/article/un-report-congos- Congo or eventually stopped working in the region.
atrocities-end-impunity-1

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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-10- From a RAID report of China’s mining operations in the


08/congo-wants-companies-to-face-trial-after-un-war- DRC:
crimes-report.html “Concluding, RAID states that the report does not seek
to embarrass the People’s Republic of China (PRC) nor
Chapter 3 of the Mapping Report provides an overview to tarnish its image in the developing world. The report
of the proof that the Hutu militia in the DRC, the FDLR does however provide first hand allegations of
(Democratic Forces for the liberation of Rwanda), acts widespread corporate misconduct and human rights
in collaboration with the DRC armed forces - the FARDC abuse by Chinese companies operating in Katanga,
- to control much of the production of minerals in North which should prompt the Chinese and DRC governments
and South Kivu. These forces are aligned with the to take urgent measures. The report’s findings highlight
Kabila regime but at the same time acting the need to promote greater awareness of responsible
independently to profit from mining minerals. They are corporate behaviour among Chinese companies
constantly engaged in warfare with the Rwandan and operating abroad. The problems described in the report
Ugandan backed forces, in particular the CNFP are not confined to Chinese operators and similar
(National Congress for the Defence of the People) who conditions prevail in companies owned by Congolese or
are likewise fighting to control mining and the lucrative nationals of other countries. But the Chinese are the
exports of Coltan, cassiterite, gold and diamonds. The most significant operators in the mineral sector in
Rwandan and Ugandan forces are aligned with the US Katanga. According to the Governor of the Province
and are hostile to the findings of the Mapping Report more than 60 out of Katanga’s 75 processing plants are
especially the reference to Tutsi genocide of Hutus in owned by Chinese companies and over 90 per cent of
the DRC. . http://www.rnw.nl/africa/article/un-congo- the region’s minerals go to China.6 Congolese workers
report-double-standards-human-rights and Chinese managers have given candid accounts of
the indignities, harassment, threats and abuse that
The UN Report of the Group they endure on a daily basis.
of Experts in 2008 goes They have set out what they
much deeper and traces the feel is needed to improve
illegally mined minerals workplace conditions,
from their source through environmental protection,
the merchants to export health and safety standards,
and finally to the community relations and
companies in a number of corporate accountability. The
countries which fund the recommendations addressed to
trade and exploit the both the DRC and Chinese
mineral wealth. They Governments are set out at the
include Traxys (Belgium), end of the report. In RAID’s
Afrimex (UK) Thailand view it is only by supporting
Smelting and Refining, such improvements that China
Emirates Gold (Dubai) and can hope to reach the goals
others. Thus much of the that it has set itself in its Africa
DRCs mineral wealth ends foreign policy declaration
up in the hands of many concerning sustainable
intermediaries including the development and harmonious
militias in the East of the relations between peoples.”
DRC, and the agents in Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe http://goodelectronics.org/news-en/chinese-mining-
etc, before finally ending up in many countries operations-in-katanga-drc-supplying-the-electronics-
including Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Hong Kong, industry/
India, Malaysia, Thailand, South Africa, Switzerland,
Netherlands, Russia, UAE and UK. The DRC is an ongoing arena of inter-imperialist
rivalry over the illegal mining of valuable minerals.
China’s collaboration with the DRC The US and the EU imperialist powers have
traditionally been the main exploiters of the Congo.
What about China’s growing influence? China has moved But recently China has become the main imperialist
into the DRC with a massive deal with the regime of partner of the Joseph Kabila regime in the DRC. The
Joseph Kabila to mine copper and build infrastructure two main militias are the CNDP aligned to Rwanda
in Katanga. and Uganda and thus the US, while Kabila’s FARDC
http://www.mineweb.com/mineweb/view/mineweb/e and the militias it backs are aligned broadly to China.
n/page67?oid=47452&sn=Detail The growing rivalry between these two imperialist
powers can be seen as the ultimate cause of the
Joseph Kabila and the DRC army are also working with ongoing barbaric wars, mass rape and slave labor
Chinese interests in the informal mining of Coltan and conditions suffered by the people of the Eastern DRC.
shipping it out via Zaire. This has attracted the
attention of NGOs exposing the inhuman methods used
by Chinese firms.

11
Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

Zimbawe: New ISO fights for democracy


The global crisis is intensifying the international class war as the imperialist ruling classes fight to
survive by defeating their rivals and making the workers pay for their crisis. In Africa this class war is
expressed as a growing rivalry between the US and its EU partners UK and France, and the increasing
influence of China and Russia. The national bourgeoisies are lined up behind one or other of the two
blocs or trying to play off one against the other. In Zimbabwe we see the ruling national bourgeoisie
increasingly dependent on China which it promotes as a progressive force for development. The masses
in Zimbabwe as in the whole of Africa have to break with the illusion that China is the saviour of Africa
and a progressive alternative to Western imperialism. The new ISOZ has begun this task.
At one extreme we see in the DRC the intervention of regimes tie the working class through its unions and
Rwanda and Uganda as proxies for the US to plunder political parties to subservience to Chinese imperialism
the minerals in the North East of the DRC has caused as much as US imperialism.
ongoing wars and mass
murder for 20 years (see This is true also of Zimbabwe.
article on DRC). In other The current power sharing
countries we see a division regime unites the national
between the bourgeoisies bourgeois factions into one
creating the conditions for unstable regime to form a
proxy wars. This is most more powerful popular front to
developed in the Sudan and contain the Zimbabwe masses
most recently Somalia. In who are among the most
Nigeria, China has made oppressed and exploited in
inroads into the traditionally Southern Africa. Their
US and UK dominated oil factional differences have
industry with its massive been suppressed by the
loans for oil, which is being prospect of profiteering in
resisted by the US but has yet Zimbabwe’s ‘blood diamonds’,
to break out into open war. and by the need to unite to
contain the popular masses in
In Zimbabwe the Mugabe a patriotic, popular front. The
faction of the ruling class is question then is, who on the
dependent on China funding left can fight this renewed
the economy as a result of popular front and break the
the US/EU economic masses from the fake left
embargo. The MDC faction is aligned to the US bloc. bourgeois project of the new constitution? Not the
The new popular front regime between the ZANU-PF reformist left leadership of the ISOZ around Gwisai
and the MCD remains dominated by the Mugabe faction which fully participates in this popular front.
and so is increasing its ties to China. This relationship is
now reinforced by the ‘strategic partnership’ In 2009 the ISOZ split with a large faction breaking from
established between the ANC in South Africa and China. the international IST Gwisai line of backing the MDC
Zimbabwe’s fate is inevitably tied to that of the whole popular front party. This faction entered talks with the
of Southern Africa in which China is now the rising FLT of which the CWG and HWRS were part at the time
imperialist power. over the 23 points of the FLT program. However, before
any democratic agreement could be reached, a leader
The ANC paints the strategic partnership with China as of this faction Mutero formed a secret faction with the
one in which both partners ‘win’. This is because China WIVL leader Mo and joined the FLT by amending the
is regarded as a successful developing country that has minutes to say that the faction (unilaterally named by
managed to escape the clutches of Western the WIVL the International Revolutionary League)
imperialism. It is therefore seen as a partner in agreed to join the FLT (now the FLTI after the
economic development that will provide aid and low adherence of the South African WIVL and US HWRS in
cost loans as well as build infrastructure in exchange July 2009), on the basis that it agreed with the 23
for oil and other minerals. However, the ANC’s points and the FLTI majority line that China could not
strategic relationship with China comes a long time become a new imperialist power and was no more than
after China has made huge inroads into other Southern a semi-colony of US imperialism.
African states like Mozambique, Angola, etc. In those
countries China’s role is no less exploitative and The unprincipled fusion of the IRL with the FLTI led to
oppressive than that of the older Western imperialist the majority of the faction that has broken with the
powers. China is in Africa for cheap raw materials and ISOZ rejecting this fusion and held a special congress in
labour. The national bourgeoisies are junior partners of August to repudiate the IRL leadership of Mutero and
China in sharing some of the profits. The popular front the unprincipled politics of the FLTI. The congress

12
Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

reconstituted the faction of the ISOZ on the basis of renegades, what does that make your fusion? It makes
workers democracy as the new ISOZ. It vindicated its it an unprincipled bloc with opportunists whose
break with the popular front of the MDC and of the internationalism only goes as far as their receipt of
rotten politics of the international Cliffite line in international money transfers. We predict that what is
Zimbabwe, and also repudiated the politics of the FLTI. left of the IRL will be no more than an appendage of
the WIVL and the FLTI and faithfully reproduce the vast
The FLTI and Mutero responded with a scurrilous tracts of ultraleft propaganda pouring out of the FLTI
slander that the new ISOZ had misappropriated funds full-timers in Buenos Aires and Cape Town. Any former
and were petty bourgeois criminals. The ISOZ replied ISOZ workers who are caught up in this charade should
rebutting these slanders and accusing Mutero and the immediately join the new ISOZ!
FLTI of lies and slanders. The new ISOZ which has been
supported on the basis of elementary principle of We look forward to building a fraternal relationship
workers democracy by our Liaison Committee (HWRS with the new ISOZ on the basis of serious discussion and
and CWG – as the former minority of the FLTI on China) voting on our different histories, fundamental
has undertaken to produce a provisional program and principles and programmatic points such as the
enter into formal discussions over our historic character of China, blocking with them facing the
differences between Trotskyism and Cliffism. We salute global crisis as it impacts Zimbabwe on the principle of
the new ISOZ in its fight to restore democracy in the workers democracy, and jointly fighting to build a
only working class organisation in Zimbabwe that can Trotskyist vanguard of the masses for the first time in
seriously fight the constitution process and the Zimbabwe’s history, and regrouping with the militant
formation of a new popular, patriotic front to vanguards in all of the Southern African states.
subordinate and subdue the Zimbabwe exploited
masses. • For a new vanguard World Party of
Socialism founded on the basis of the 1938
The FLTI has now tasted the bitter fruit of its Transitional Program!
unprincipled opportunist fusion with the IRL. It has now
broken with the Mutero leadership of the IRL which has • For workers and peasants governments in
re-entered the popular front and is holding a ‘Marxism’ Zimbabwe and South Africa!
conference at the end of October in which speakers
from the MDC popular front party are invited. But this • For a Federation of Socialist Republics in
break comes with no public accounting by the FLTI of
Southern Africa!
its secret faction with Mutero to split the ISOZ. If you
fuse with opportunists who then become right wing

Ecuador: What’s behind the attempted Coup?


The cause of the attempted coup in October can be found in the backwardness of the Ecuador economy
and its new dependence on Chinese imperialism. The least viable of the ALBA and facing mounting debt
Correa has moved to the right to open up the country to Chinese investment. This has alienated
sections of his support base in the unions and the indigenous organisations (Conaie) who stood back
from the coup attempt. The Bolivarian populists blame these indigenous social movements as under US
influence, instead of blaming Correa for opening up the country to Chinese imperialism. Today it is
China that is spending billions building a new dam, opening up new mines and making loans for oil.

The Dam detail engineering", which he said is expressly


Under the heading ‘Has China just bought is own Latin prohibited by law. Ecuadorians are also upset by loans
American Country?’ one source reports that China now they call larger than necessary: Another contradiction,
finances a majority of the public energy projects Roldos argued, is that although it is a fixed price
underway in Ecuador. Recent deals include an 85% contract, the financing deal is based on price indexing -
stake in a hydroelectric dam that will cover a third of adjusting amounts by the change over time in prices -
the country's energy needs by 2016. for materials and labor power "using a more generous
http://www.speroforum.com/a/35714/CHINA--ECUADOR--- formula than the one normally used for Ecuador's public
China-to-finance-60-per-cent-of-public-works-projects-in- procurements". In an article published last week by the
Ecuadors-energy-sector El Comercio newspaper, the former vice president said
the dam was "severely overpriced" because the $1.98
Chinese firms will also take charge of most billion price tag is $400 million higher than the cost
construction. As you can imagine if another country projected in 2008.
controlled our utilities, many Ecuadorians are extemely Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/coca-
anxious, reports Asia Times: For his part, former
codo-sinclair-ecuador-china-2010-6#ixzz13Riig700
Ecuadorean vice president Leon Roldos (1981-1984)
maintained that the loan is illegal, because it finances
a "turn-key contract" without "definitive studies or
13
Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

The copper mine Jones Newswires, Ecuadorean Finance Ministry and CDB
“Tongling Nonferrous Metals Group Holdings Co. and officials signed an agreement for state oil company
China Railway Construction Corp. may invest as much as Petroecuador to supply PetroChina with 36,000 barrels
$3 billion in a copper project in Ecuador, as China seeks per day of Oriente and Napo crude or fuel oil until the
to control more commodity assets to feed its economy. total amount of the loan has been paid. In a decree
Production at the Corriente Copper Belt may start in signed on Friday by President Rafael Correa authorising
2013, Hu Guobin, vice president of a venture set up by to sign the loan, Correa said the operation involves
the two Chinese companies Ecuador's Finance Ministry,
for the project, said in an state-run Petroecuador,
interview. Annual copper Petrochina International
in concentrate output Company and the China
would start at 30,000 Development Bank. In July,
metric tons and double a Ecuador's National Public
year later, he said. Chinese Planning Secretariat signed a
companies spent more than memorandum of
$30 billion last year buying understanding with China's
oilfields and mines as two National Construction &
decades of economic Agricultural Machinery
growth averaging 10.1 Imp./Exp. Corp, or CAMC,
percent made China the opening the door for potential
world’s biggest metal and financing by Chinese banks
energy consumer. Copper prices have doubled in the worth about $1 billion. Last year Ecuador's state-run oil
past five years, driven by demand in the third-largest company, Petroecuador, and PetroChina signed a two-
economy...Tongling, China’s second-biggest copper year crude-oil supply contract. An initial $1 billion
producer, and China Railway Construction, the nation’s advance payment for the oil was made in August 2009
biggest railroad builder, in December agreed to buy to Ecuador, with an interest rate of 7.25%.”
Canada’s Corriente Resources Inc. for C$679 million http://www.upstreamonline.com/live/article228146.ece
($652 million) for the copper resources. The deal was
completed and Corriente was delisted this month, The loan to cover the deficit
according to a statement on Corriente’s website...The “Ecuador will probably tap the nation’s pension fund
rapid expansion of smelting capacity in China, the and seek a loan from China next year to help finance its
world’s biggest producer and consumer of copper estimated $2.7 billion budget deficit, according to Erich
metal, has increased ore demand and spurred Arispe, an analyst at Fitch Ratings. South America’s
companies to invest overseas. Larger rival Jiangxi seventh-biggest economy may need as much as 4.3
Copper Co. invested in copper mines in Peru and percent of gross domestic product to fund the
Afghanistan, and Zijin Mining Group Co. is seeking “relatively large” deficit...Ecuador is using debt to
copper and cobalt assets in the Republic of Congo. The increase spending on infrastructure projects and social
Corriente Copper Belt covers 17 deposits in the four programs in a bid to lower unemployment and boost
main mining regions of Mirador, Mirador Norte, economic growth, President Rafael Correa said in a
Panantza and San Carlos, China Railway said in June 5 statement. The nation’s default on $3.2 billion
December. Copper resources are about 11.54 million in bonds since 2008, declining oil production and a
tons, based on initial studies, it said. Corriente was also slump in private investment has crimped funding
involved in the exploration and development of gold, sources... The Finance Ministry said yesterday China
silver and molybdenum mines, according to the delivered $800 million of a $1 billion loan agreement
December statement.” signed last month and will deliver the remaining $200
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-08-13/tongling- million in the “next months.” Ecuador owed China
china-railway-plan-to-invest-3-billion-in-ecuador-copper- $3.66 billion as of July 31, according to a Finance
mine.html Ministry report. The figure doesn’t include the $1
billion loan signed in August.”
The loan for oil http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-09-30/ecuador-will-
“Ecuador's government signed a loan agreement for $1 probably-tap-china-pensions-to-finance-deficit-fitch-says.html
billion with the China Development Bank on 31 August
2010. The loan will have two tranches, one for $800 US backing for the police and military who staged the
million and another for $200 million. It will have a fixed coup attempt was probably to test the water to see if
interest rate of 6% per year for a four-year term and an it had the support to remove Correa and replace him
additional six-month grace period. The loan will be with a President aligned to the US rather than China.
used to finance Ecuador's investment programme for Correa is backed by the Bolivarian left populists who
infrastructure and other budgetary outlays for the paint his reliance on China as THE progressive
2010-11 period. It will also be used to finance oil alternative to the US. He is, with Castro, Chavez and
projects of national interest, said Finance Minister Morales, looking to Chinese ‘market socialism’ as the
Patricio Rivera in a press release. The minister said that answer to US imperialism. Revolutionaries have to
with this loan Ecuador had ensured its budget financing break this international popular front that unites
for 2010. In June, following meetings in Beijing, Castro with Hu Jintao!
according the minutes of the meetings reviewed by Dow

14
Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

Draft theses on Crisis and the World Situation


1- Objectively we are living through a major structural crisis of global capitalism. We said when this crisis hit in mid 07
that it was a major crisis of falling profits endemic to capitalism. The subprime crisis was only a surface effect of
underlying failure to invest in production that was not profitable. So-called ‘financialization’ is just the appearance of
‘finance capital’ (understood in Lenin’s terms as the fusion of industrial and banking capital) being driven out of the
productive circuit by the tendency for the rate of profit to fall. The result has been many trillions of overproduced
surplus capital speculating in existing commodities driving up their prices creating a bubble of fictitious capital. The
crisis will only be resolved for the ruling class when they have devalued sufficient surplus capital to enable profits to be
restored.

2- The first phase of the crisis brought about the biggest rescue of capital by the state in history yet the crisis is not
over and capital is still facing trillions of bad debts which have yet to be devalued or destroyed. Nor have the ruling
classes yet imposed the deep austerity measures that they need to restore their profits. The initial reaction to the
financial crisis was to increase state spending i.e. reflation. According to Ticktin, however, this year the G20 made the
decision to reverse reflation and radically deflate by massively cutting state spending to balance budgets. Only the US
resisted this change, probably because the US is not bound by the normal rules and can run massive debts because the
dollar is the world currency. http://www.cpgb.org.uk/article.php?article_id=1004129 The logic of a structural crisis as
the ‘solution’ to falling profits is to ‘restructure’ or devalue capital – both constant (plant and raw materials) and
variable capital (wages) - by concentrating and centralising capital as the weak firms go bankrupt and strong firms buy
up their cheap assets. This means necessarily in the epoch of imperialism a growing rivalry between imperialist powers
to re-divide the world in the survival of the fittest monopoly firms. This rivalry takes economic form in trade rivalry as
each state attempts to block imports but increase exports, but can only be resolved by imperialist war and class war.
Today at this point in history this rivalry is most intense between the US and China blocs, and it is this growing
antagonism that gives expression to the dominant aspects of the epoch of imperialism, of crises, wars and revolutions.
Once again we have to choose between socialism or barbarism and we are well on the road to barbarism.

3- The so-called currency war is a first step in a trade war with China that the US cannot win because its low labor
costs combined with rapid technological upgrading means it is the most productive of commodities with least labour
time (value) and can out-compete its rivals. China has overtaken Japan and Germany as the workshop of the world and
cannot be beaten in the trade war. The value of the yuan is therefore not artificially kept low but reflects China’s
capitalist productive dynamism. http://www.thenation.com/article/154484/china-drivers-seat What is more China is
moving rapidly from a capital importing country to a capital exporting country which means it is extending its high
productivity base globally in sourcing cheap raw materials and labor power and finding new markets outside the US and
Asia to manufacture and sell its cheap commodities. http://www.areadevelopment.com/StudiesResearchPapers/10-19-
2010/china-outward-foreign-direct-investment49930.shtml

4- China is winning the trade war rapidly expanding its spheres of interest at the expense of the US and its main
partners the UK, France and Spain. A number of countries have avoided the worst aspects of the recession through
trade driven by China. US allies like Italy, Germany and Australia are trading and investing heavily with China. Turkey is
turning from the EU towards China. http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Central_Asia/LJ19Ag01.html In Brazil one fraction
of the national bourgeoisie is opposed to further growth in China investments especially in agriculture and in key
sectors such as communications. The ALBA states are becoming dependent on China and looking for new loans to
maintain popularity with the masses. In Ecuador, Correa is doing deals with China to build dams and infrastructure and
loan money to balance the budget. The recent attempted coup was a weak move by the US to exploit discontent with
Correa’s move to the right which was, not to appease the US but rather China which is driving hard bargains with
Ecuador.(see article in this issue of Class Struggle)

5- This growing rivalry with China and the increasing power of the China bloc (which threatens to split NATO) means
that the US must rev up its use of military force around the world to counter China’s influence. The struggle for
control of Central Asia that has justified the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan has not been able to contain or weaken
China or Russia. Russia is now looking to collaborate with NATO in its military intervention in Afghanistan.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/oct/26/nato-afghanistan-russia-military. The iwi leaks expose the fact that
Iraq was always under the dominance of the Shi’ites. http://www.cpgb.org.uk/edition.php?issue_id=839 Kazai seeks a
deal with the Taliban. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/26/world/asia/26afghan.html?_r=1&ref=todayspaper. The
dominant national blocs in Iraq and Afghanistan are aligned to Iran and Pakistan respectively both of which are closer
to the China bloc than the US bloc. Therefore the US must move on Iran and Pakistan to squeeze out China.
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/LJ27Ak01.html. The US is renewing its plans for building the pipeline
from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan and Pakistan to India to weld an alliance in South Asia to break Russia and
China’s domination of Central Asian oil. http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Central_Asia/LJ30Ag01.html

6- The growing US drone attacks on Pakistan mean that the US wants to take direct control of Pakistan to isolate its
nuclear weapons and to checkmate China’s overland access to Arabian Gulf and Iran.
http://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/2010/10/15/new-war-rumors-u-s-plans-to-seize-pakistans-nuclear-arsenal/
Bangladesh has now been incorporated into NATO South Asian allies and is sending troops to the war in Afghanstan. In
the growing military confrontation over control of Central Asia is that nuclear armed India is being pressured by
the US into buying Patriot 3 missiles to complete the ring of missiles surrounding Russia and China stretching from
Japan to Afghanistan. http://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/2010/09/10/india-u-s-completes-global-military-structure/.
India is also preparing for border wars with China over Kashmir http://www.atimes.com/atimes/South_Asia/LJ08Df01.html

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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

and Nepal. http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/LJ16Ad01.html. Bangladesh is now part of the encirclement.


http://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/2010/09/29/bangladesh-u-s-and-nato-forge-new-partnership-in-south-asia/

7- Ultimately, and inevitably these actual and impending wars must be at the expense of the workers of the world.
The huge cost of military spending is driving the US further into debt. While it is still reflating with Quantitative Easing
Mark 2 (printing money) this money is going to the banks which are not investing but paying out profits and bonuses. It
is not going to the workers who are still losing jobs and homes. With reflation causing inflation the US working class is
suffering an historic decline in living standards not seen since the 1930s. The US is bullying Japan and China to carry
the debt which becomes translated into attacks on workers living standards in these countries. China is easing back on
buying US bonds and shows no signs of bending to any of the threats being issued by the US. It appears instead to be
moving to more FDI in the US. http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE68C0TY2010091. Japan is more compliant but
unable to finance US debt but its economy is not strong enough. Japan under the Democratic Party government is under
pressure from Japanese workers opposed to paying billions for US bases.
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/17/world/asia/17japan.html?th&emc=th

8- Thus the US and other increasingly bankrupt imperialists have no option but to impose the cost of the crisis onto
the backs of the worlds’ workers with so-called austerity measures. The bailouts of the banks has imposed big
budget deficits which the ruling class is determined to cut by cutting social spending and/or by “quantitative easing”
both of which cuts the value of variable capital (wages). The US, UK and EU imperialist states are forcibly
expropriating surplus value not only from workers today, but from workers in future generations, to maintain the
monopoly profits of their imperialist classes. This means massive unemployment and social spending. These so-called
austerity measures are draconian. In every country the ruling class is trying to solve its crisis of falling profits by
reducing taxes on capital, and this means massively cutting social spending on the social wage. In Britain the
Conservative-Liberal-Democrat Coalition government is promising a cut in public sector spending in excess of 20%. In
Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland and France there are major cuts on social spending being imposed on workers.

9- As unemployment rises and services are cut, the anger of millions of workers facing poverty and destitution is
growing. But this anger is being steered by the main union bosses into token protests to build mass pressure to push the
bourgeois regimes to the left containing and diverting the rise of working class militancy onto the parliamentary road.
Where the social democratic parties are in power imposing austerity as in Greece and Spain, the fight-back is being
limited by the unions to pressuring these governments to make these austerity measures less damaging.. In the US
where the open bourgeois Democrat Party controls Congress and the Presidency, the One Nation Project is being
organized by the union tops to put pressure on the Democrats to adopt a new deal Keynesian counter-cyclic policy.
Where it is out of power, social democratic parties are shifting slightly to the left to head off mass militancy against
the ruling conservative parties, so that this fightback is contained and channelled into the election of Social Democratic
governments at the next elections. In Britain the Blairite Labour Party under Ed Milliband has feinted slightly to the
left in recognizing that if the CONDEM regime cannot contain a mass fightback and is brought down, then social
democracy can still try to play a role in containing militant industrial action from developing into a revolutionary
challenge to the bourgeois system itself.

10- These social democrats or left liberals are arguing that austerity is a wrong policy since it leads to deflation and
depression. They hope to direct workers anger into social democratic and left liberal programs that can solve the
crisis. In Britain the fake left SWP (see New Left Blog) argues that the CONDEM austerity is not necessary for the
restoration of profits! Of course this exposes their non-Marxist view that capitalist crises are merely the result of
wrong policies and elite greed. Marxists know that capitalist crises are the inevitable result of capital over-
accumulation, and while reformists sow illusions in the possibility of reflation to boost jobs and incomes, crises can
only be resolved in the bosses’ interests by massive deflation. The crisis forces a devaluation of total capital by
destroying the weakest banks and firms allowing the strongest to concentrate and centralize their ‘good’ assets into
even bigger monopolies. We can see this has been happening since 2007. It is not in the interests of Morgan Stanley,
HSBC, Citibank etc., as well as the big Euro banks and big Chinese banks, resort to reflation if it devalues the good
assets and prevents the devaluing of bad assets. These gigantic monopolies completely control their nation states and
dictate economic policy to protect their class interests. This is why the bailouts have gone into bosses’ pockets and not
into new investment in production. This means that the ruling class will close ranks behind their national states in
defence of their monopoly corporations and make weakest firms, nations, and of course workers, go to the wall.

11- The result is that the destruction of total value to restore profits includes the total value of labour power through
job losses and wage cuts. Thus it is the working class that ultimately always pays for their crisis. As the austerity bites
we can see the spontaneous fightback spreading from Greece to Spain, to France in the EU. From the first strikes that
began in 2008 in Greece we have seen a succession of strikes controlled by the bureaucracy. In Spain it is the same, no
strike call has lead to a national coordination of strike actions, or an indefinite general strike. Not until France have
we seen the strikes spread and threaten to break out of the control of the bureaucrats. Yet even here we do not see a
breakdown of bureaucratic control, because no revolutionary leadership has emerged that can turn spontaneous strikes
into a general strike to bring down the bourgeois government and put a workers government in their place. The fake
Trotskyists of the NPA say that they will not call for a general strike and will back the negotiations between the
bureaucrats and the bourgeois regime. (Le Monde).The IMT calls for a general strike to defeat the government and
paralyse the economy, and for the Communist Party to demand the nationalisation of the big companies and the banks!
http://www.marxist.com/france-leaflet-october-28-paralyse-economy.htm

12- The objective dynamic of worsening crisis clashes with the subjective absence of a revolutionary leadership to
lead the working class to solve the crisis in it class interests. The failure to build this leadership will mean that
working class struggle is unable to challenge the power of the ruling class leaving the middle classes who are also hit by
the crisis and the more backward non-unionized sectors of the working class ripe for fascist mobilization to smash the
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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

workers organisations as responsible for the flood of migrant workers, and for the loss of jobs and the austerity
measures rather than the capitalist class itself. In France while the unions mobilise strike action there is almost no
organized opposition to Sarkosy’s campaign of forced extradition of Roma and the ban against the wearing of burqa in
public. It is clear that the bureaucratic leadership of Labour and social democratic parties are part of the national
salvation blocs that are always formed by the imperialist and national bourgeoisie to unite workers and middle class
with the bourgeoisie against foreign workers and against the international threat of a socialist revolution.

13- In the face of mounting evidence of man-made climate change and big changes in weather patterns that cause
devastating floods and crop failures, the climate change denier lobby is working for the corporates to enflame the
populist petty bourgeois and backward workers into blaming carbon taxes on profits as more taxation of the little
person by big states. The oil giants like BP can still get away with massive destruction in wars for oil in the Middle
East, and a catastrophic oil spill in the Caribbean and pays only a small part of the social and environmental costs of
such capitalist disasters. Here we see the full face of capitalism riding roughshod over national states to destroy the
forces of production including the habitat of whole populations as in Pakistan and in the Gulf of Mexico. And while
China is now leading the world in ‘green’ technology, it is still building dams
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/LJ14Ad03.html and nuclear plants, rail-tracks through tundra and forests
around the world, high speed rail even in California, http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE68C0TY20100913
cultivating vast tracts of agricultural land despoiling natural habitats in Brazil and Tibet, enlarging its carbon footprint
with each giant step around the world.

14- We can see the proto-fascist movements already in existence. In Britain the national salvation bloc is the Bj4Bw
campaign of 2009 which sought to protect jobs for British workers against other EU workers. This puts the British trade
unions in the same reactionary national camp as the BNP and other extreme right forces. In Germany and the
Netherlands there are proto-fascist organisations campaigning against migrant workers, especially of Islamic religion.
Germany has had a backlash against immigrants and bailing out Greece. Merkel has called ‘multiculturalism’ a failure.
The EU is in danger of being torn apart by the centripetal forces of the bipolar world into rival xenophobias. In the US
the Tea Party is a rightwing populist movement aligned to the Republicans that can easily develop into a fascist
movement. As the crisis deepens we will see the working class organize to resist its attacks and this will pose a threat
to the bourgeoisies who will revive the old fascist arguments for national salvation against alien forces.

15- While Islam has been projected as the main enemy of freedom and democracy since the collapse of the Soviet
Union, it is now being rivalled by Chinese ‘communism’. http://www.thenation.com/blog/155317/china-bashing-
2010-election-echoes-cold-war. The US ruling class is leading the demonizing of China as a communist regime that is
putting capitalist democracy under threat. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/10/us/politics/10outsource.html. What
underlies this demonization of Chinese ‘communism’ is of course the rise of China as a threat to US hegemony. The
weakness of the US economy has prompted a suggestion by a US professor teaching in China that China could even
invest its excess finance capital in the US to fund a ‘new deal’? http://mpettis.com/2010/10/xin-fa%E2%80%99an-a-
modest-proposal-to-resolve-the-coming-trade-war/ That this can even be proposed marks the perception of a real
decline of the US as the hegemonic imperialist power to one that can become dependent on China as the newly
hegemonic power. This sense of a loss of hegemonic power is what underlies the blaming of the crisis on China. The
rallying of the Tea Party reactionary populism against liberal or ‘socialist’ elites implies that the US people have been
sold out to China and to Latin American migrants. China and Bolivarian ‘socialism’ becomes perceived as the
overarching enemy of the American people and the cause of its historic decline.

16- The fake ‘left’ defends Castro and Chavez from US imperialism, but sows illusions in their converging brand of
Chinese-style ‘market socialism’, or ‘green capitalism’, and so disarms the international working class against the
rise of anti-China xenophobia and proto-fascism in the imperialist countries. (Green Left News). The reformist left puts
its faith in bourgeois Bonapartist leaders (who balance between the masses and the imperialist bourgeoisie) in the ALBA
countries and the restorationist bureaucratic Bonapartists in Cuba rather than call for a political revolution because
they think that China as a global power offers a progressive alternative to the imperialist US and its allies. This
treachery leaves workers unprepared to stop the restoration of capitalism in Cuba and the coming counter-
revolutionary wars at the hands of all the imperialist ruling classes, including China.

17- Facing this objective crisis and the subjective crisis of the failure of revolutionary leadership this puts a huge
responsibility on the shoulders of revolutionary Trotskyists to struggle all the more urgently to re-found a
revolutionary international on the basis of the Transitional Program of 1938. Trotsky laid down the principles of
revolutionary internationalism to fight imperialist crises in the 1930s. In the epoch of imperialism workers have to
break from the patriotic popular fronts with their bourgeoisie, and with the labor bureaucrats that act as the agents of
the bourgeoisie, and refuse to fight against the workers of other nations. Instead they become brothers and sisters of
working class fighters in every nation. Facing a deepening crisis and the inevitable transformation of trade wars
between rival imperialist powers into military wars, we must demand the unity of workers of all countries to fight for
an international socialist revolution. We must defend all workers especially the most oppressed - on national, ethnic,
gender and sexual grounds - against attacks by uniting them into one force across national borders to defeat all
attempts by the ruling class and their labor lieutenants to divide and rule the world proletariat.

18- The refounding of a new World Party of Socialism based on a Leninist Trotskyist program will solve the crisis of
revolutionary leadership. The only way for workers internationally to stop the fascist counter-revolution is to break
from the Bolivarian and Chinese Bonapartist bourgeoisies and their bureaucratic lieutenants and organise their own
independent workers councils and workers militias to mount political general strikes to bring down the bourgeois
regimes and replace them with Workers and Peasants governments forming socialist federations on every continent!

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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

Tribute to Roque Sanchez, revolutionary fighter!


We reprint the tribute of the FLTI on the death of the young Peruvian militant Roque Sanchez on 29
October 2010. We first came to know Roque when he was a member of the Lucha Marxista of Peru in 2003.
The CWG and Lucha Marxista became members of the Collective in December 2002. When Lucha Marxista
and the Collective split in 2004, Roque Sanchez stayed with the Collective which then became the FLT in
2006. While the CWG left the FLTI (as it became in 2009) in 2010, we recognise that Roque Sanchez was a
revolutionary youth leader who dedicated his short life to the victory of the revolution. Long live Roque!

A young fighter for the cause of socialist revolution and for the re-
foundation of the Fourth International has passed away.
Today, at the age of 28, the young Trotskyist leader Roque proletarian revolution and its huge historical upheavals, the
Sanchez has died. When he was very young, he joined Europe and French working class will stop the brutal attack
Peruvian Trotskyism. He lived his first experiences in that the ruling classes have launched without mercy to make
Trotskyism in the group Poder Obrero of Peru, Lucha Marxista exploited of the world pay for the crisis they have provoked.”
of Cuzco and was a founder member of the Collective for a
revolutionary international that LOI-CI of Argentina called to From the FLTI, the leaders and militants who share his
set up in 2001 to regroup the forces of the internationalist combat can only say that he lived a short but fruitful life at
revolutionaries when the Ecuadorian and Argentinean the service of the world proletariat. We do not have doubts
revolution hit and started the first fires of the Bolivian that if he could have predicted this tragic end, surely, he
revolution. would affirm, holding his fist high, “I would’ve given even
more years of my life for the cause of proletariat!”
With the Split of collective, Roque joined the foundation of
the FLT, making a great international work from Peru, Today, the bourgeoisie, like in Argentina, holds a wake one of
collaborating in a decisive way in the work on the lessons of its heroes, such as Kirchner, that saved their interests thanks
the Peruvian revolution in ’78 and intervened decisively in the to the treasons of the leaderships of the Argentinean and
process of the Bolivian revolution to where he travelled as a Latin American proletariat. Roque told us that it was not
true internationalist in order to intervene in the revolutionary possible to have any condolence or to pay tribute to the
events that shook Bolivia and Latin America in 2003/2005. leaders of the proletariat’s class enemies whose government
and regimes had murdered thousands and thousands of
In 2009, he was founder member and a delegate of the LTI of workers in Argentina and in the American continent. He said
Peru to the foundation Congress of the International Leninist that the hug of the bolibourgeoisies paying tribute to Kirchner
Trotskyist Fraction, in where they merged groups led by WIVL only hid, under a sweet veneer, the gunmen of the union
of South Africa, the former FLT and observer groups from bureaucracy that had massacred the young Ferreyra, militant
USA. of Partido Obrero. How right Roque was! We only pay tribute
and we honour the militants of the world proletariat, to the
He is co-author of the works on “Bolivia: an expropriated heroes (many times anonymous and other times popular) who
revolution”, as well as a work on a deep research in polemic die while fighting for the program of revolutionary Marxism.
with the GB of France on the “nature and fight against the
labour aristocracy and bureaucracy”. For our honour of revolutionary workers and militants of the
Fourth International and of the fight for re-founding it, we
A young and brilliant Trotskyist leader, but above all an know we will continue this fight. Roque was part of the new
internationalist militant of the proletariat, has passed away generation that feverishly sought the continuity and legacy of
at the age of 28. The cruelty of nature finishes his life very the Fourth International of 1938, which was destroyed and
early. He died for a cardiac arrest and sudden death. liquidated during decades of adaptations and capitulations
with which the destroyers of Trotskyism left no tracks of
He passed away very young, as an adoptive son of the working bolshevism.
class since he was 17 years old. 11 years fighting for the cause
of proletariat. He gave the absolute majority of his conscious FLTI has been nourished and is nourished by a new generation
life to the fight for the international socialist revolution and of revolutionary workers youth. Comrade Trotsky reminded us
re-founding the Fourth International. He was committed to that when a movement becomes impotent to lead proletariat
that fight as a member of the Secretariat of International to the victory in history, it disappears and the generation who
Coordination of the International Leninist Trotskyist Fraction carried it out degenerates. Our comrade Roque was not part
thousands of kilometers away from his country. Roque had of those tired souls, and for that reason he crossed thousands
understood perfectly that if we do not re-found the Fourth of kilometers to set up a fighting international centre to fight
International, Trotskyism will never be able to even dream in for re-founding the Fourth International.
setting up revolutionary parties in any place of the world for
the victory of the socialist revolution. This new generation of revolutionaries has and has had the
perspicacious of thinking with their own head, seeking
Today very early, after writing a new essay on the events of feverishly for the lessons of the great combats of the
the huge class struggle in France and in Europe, he went to international proletariat to give continuity to the Marxist
bed to have a rest. He never woke up again. His work, still theory, that is, the theory of the proletariat revolution, a
not finished, stated a call on French workers: “Our fight in thousand times trampled on and falsified by revisionism in
the streets of Paris must set on fire Europe! Out Sarkozy! Out Marxism. Roque used to say that it is not possible to walk
the Fifth Republic of the French imperialist butchers! For the ahead in the fight for the socialist revolution without fighting
return of the Commune of Paris! Only in that way, by the resolutely for giving continuity to the program of proletariat

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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

so that it does not start again facing each decisive combat in masses like in Cuba by dismissing hundred thousands of
the history. To that cause, he dedicated great part of his workers, similarly or in a worst way than Sarkozy, the Queen
forces during the last years as a publicist. The lack of facility of England, the German transnationals and bourbons of Spain.
he had to speak and express himself orally was perfectly This is what the Cuban Stalinist bureaucracy does, who is
substituted in a brilliant way for his magnificent and acute today ready to become the agent of capitalist restoration, as
blessing as a publicist. yesterday were the Stalinists, giving away the workers states
and becoming new managers of Citibank and the Morgan
In his essay on the events of France, Roque said that the Bank.
imperialist French bankers and owners of the transnational
companies are the grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and We pay tribute to a militant of the Fourth International whose
great-great grandchildren of those who stuck their umbrellas historical task will be to clean the way of the proletariat and
in the Paris communers massacred in 1871, heirs of those remove so many treacherous leaderships that sell out its
who, with the popular front in 1936-38, delivered the French combat and gains. We pay tribute to nothing more and
proletariat with their hands and feet tied up to Marshal Petain nothing less than an internationalist revolutionary who died
for him to give Hitler the keys of Paris. The imperialist proud of being part of an international centre that fights for
bourgeoisie of today, daughter of De Gaulle, Mitterrand, re-founding the Fourth International. In our tribute, no
Giscard D’Estaing, Pompidou and other dregs of the hypocrisy exists. Sometimes, your distractions prevented you
imperialist Fifth Republic, remembers very well how they from focusing on your tasks more coherently. Your passion to
managed to defeat the heroic revolution of French May in ’68, re-found Peruvian Trotskyism, sometimes, separated you from
with the treason of Stalinism. the combat for an international centre. However, you always
tried it over and over again. Always. And to think that petty
The exploiters inherit the property and the lessons of how bourgeois, servants of the social-imperialist parties, dared to
their previous generations smashed the proletariat. The expel you applying the worst Lambertist methods of the
comrades of the African secretariat of FLTI pay tribute to him Peruvian Trotskyism, accusing you of “crazy”… “sick boy”…We
by stating that his program –the program of the entire FLTI- looked at each other and we recognized ourselves. They used
on France is already being cooked with low flame in the the same treatment used by Stalinism against its dissidents.
barricades of Paris, in the pickets of the oil workers…in the Stalinism masked as Trotskyism. We cry out: “Long live the
worker youth immigrants of the Citiés-the vanguard of the ‘crazy’!” and thus, we advanced towards a Bolshevik merger.
exploited in the combat- which are treated like vandals by You were proud of that fight. Such fight is already heritage of
the union bureaucracy and aristocracies-servants of the our tendency, as every fight we wage when we broke
imperialist bourgeoisie. The new uprisings and new general relentlessly the parties that far of serving at proletariat, they
strikes of Guadeloupe and Martinique pose the unity of the submitted it to the bourgeoisie and did that in order to back
proletariat of colonies and semi-colonies with the proletariat every treacherous union bureaucracy that led proletariat to a
in the metropolis. That is the way. The starting point to get dead end.
the victory is there. You have put a great effort in this
combat. Perhaps, it caused that your health to break earlier His comrades in Lima are aware of his work among health
and in a cruel and premature way it cost you your life. We workers, the uprising mining workers in Casapalca know about
know that if you had known it beforehand, you would have his internationalist combat when he took there the solidarity
done the same and much more for your convictions. of hundreds of worker organizations of the world; solidarity
with their struggle and against the repression they had
The crisis of our world party prevents the new generation of suffered that was led by FLTI groups at world-wide level. The
the proletariat from entering the combat with that legacy of agricultural workers of Trujillo met him fighting for the
historical lessons to win. Roque insisted that the treacherous general strike together with the comrades of Nucleo Obrero
leaderships force the proletariat to start always from the Revolucionario of that province who today are sympathizer of
beginning, snatching proletariat here and there the landmarks FLTI.
of socialism it won throughout its combat. The fight to re-
found the Fourth International, the world party for the The comrades of the Liga Trotskista Internacionalista --
socialist revolution, is that the proletariat -with lessons of its Internationalist Trotskyist League-- of Peru are losing an
historical combat- build the leadership that leads it to international leader. The health workers, the revolutionary
victory, that is, to the international socialist revolution. This students will feel his absence. The mining and agricultural
was understood by the new generation of revolutionary workers will ask for him. But we, the workers of Paris, and
Trotskyists to whom the old generation only gave promises of Africa, the revolutionaries of the American continent and all
victories but left nothing else than landmarks of miserable the members of the International Leninist Trotskyist Fraction
defeats. will not feel less such absence. His revolutionary personality
will be irreplaceable, but his fight, without any doubt, will be
Comrade Roque Sanchez: today we pay tribute and honour to continued for the revolutionary worker youth.
your revolutionary militancy, your combat that is the same
fight that the new generation of the proletariat is already Our Transitional program states that the battlefield is full of
giving in the streets of Europe, in the enslaved Africa, in the fake politicians, of rubble of the counterrevolutionary and
untamable and rebel Palestine, in the streets of USA and is reformist currents. That there are more corrupted than
fighting toughly in the American continent. We say goodbye incorruptible ones in the planet. You are one of the latter, of
to you and honour your struggle for the socialist revolution. the upright militants for the proletariat cause who was in the
battlefield entirely.
In your tribute we re-vindicate the Fourth International and
its founder members of ’38, and state with you, as we have Comrade Roque Sánchez: For socialism forever! Forward to
always done, that between Trotskyism and Stalinism there is the victory of the international socialist revolution! Long live
a blood river. Thus, the FLTI (of which you are a founder the fight to re-found the Fourth International!
member) is at the front line of combat against the impostors
of socialism who, under the name of socialism, attacks on the Fracción Leninista Trotskista Internacional (International
Leninist Trotskyist Fraction)
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Class Struggle 91 September/October 2010

What We Fight For


Overthrow Capitalism capitalism in crisis, led by a revolutionary Marxist
party, produces a revolutionary class-consciousness.
Historically, capitalism expanded world-wide to free
much of humanity from the bonds of feudal or tribal For a Revolutionary Party
society, and developed the economy, society and
culture to a new higher level. But it could only do this The bourgeois and its agents condemn the Marxist party
by exploiting the labour of the productive classes to as totalitarian. We say that without a democratic and a
make its profits. To survive, capitalism became centrally organised party there can be no revolution.
increasingly destructive of "nature" and humanity. In We base our beliefs on the revolutionary tradition of
the early 20th century it entered the epoch of Bolshevism and Trotskyism. Such a party, armed with a
imperialism in which successive crises unleashed wars, transitional program, forms a bridge that joins the daily
revolutions and counter-revolutions. Today we fight to fight to defend all the past and present gains won from
end capitalism’s wars, famine, oppression and capitalism, to the victorious socialist revolution.
injustice, by mobilising workers to overthrow their own Defensive struggles for bourgeois rights and freedoms,
ruling classes and bring to an end the rotten, for decent wages and conditions, will link up the
exploitative and oppressive society that has exceeded struggles of workers of all nationalities, genders,
its use-by date. ethnicities and sexual orientations, bringing about
movements for workers control, political strikes and
Fight for Socialism the arming of the working class, as necessary steps to
workers' power and the smashing of the bourgeois
By the 20th century, capitalism had created the pre- state. Along the way, workers will learn that each new
conditions for socialism –a world-wide working class and step is one of many in a long march to revolutionise
modern industry capable of meeting all our basic needs. every barrier put in the path to the victorious
The potential to eliminate poverty, starvation, disease revolution.
and war has long existed. The October Revolution
proved this to be true, bringing peace, bread and land Fight for Communism
to millions. But it became the victim of the combined
assault of imperialism and Stalinism. After 1924 the Communism stands for the creation of a classless,
USSR, along with its deformed offspring in Europe, stateless society beyond socialism that is capable of
degenerated back towards capitalism. In the absence of meeting all human needs. Against the ruling class lies
a workers political revolution, capitalism was restored that capitalism can be made "fair" for all; that nature
between 1990 and 1992. Vietnam and China then can be "conserved"; that socialism and communism are
followed. In the 21sst century only Cuba and North "dead"; we raise the red flag of communism to keep
Korea survive as degenerate workers states. We alive the revolutionary tradition of the' Communist
unconditionally defend these states against capitalism Manifesto of 1848, the Bolshevik-led October
and fight for political revolution to overthrow the Revolution; the Third Communist International until
bureaucracy as part of world socialism. 1924, the revolutionary Fourth International up to 1940
before its collapse into centrism. We fight to build a
Defend Marxism new, Fifth, Communist International, as a world party
of socialism capable of leading workers to a victorious
While the economic conditions for socialism exist struggle for socialism.
today, standing between the working class and
socialism are political, social and cultural barriers. Class Struggle is the bi-Monthly paper of the
They are the capitalist state and bourgeois ideology and Communist Workers’ Group of New
its agents. These agents claim that Marxism is dead and Zealand/Aotearoa, in a Liaison Committee with
capitalism need not be exploitative. We say that
Humanist Workers for Revolutionary Socialism.
Marxism is a living science that explains both
capitalism’s continued exploitation and its attempts to
hide class exploitation behind the appearance of PO Box 60620, Auckland, New Zealand.
individual "freedom" and "equality". It reveals how and Email cwg006@yahoo.com
why the reformist, Stalinist and centrist misleaders of http://redrave.blogspot.com
the working class tie workers to bourgeois ideas of http://communistworker.blogspot.com
nationalism, racism, sexism and equality. Such false
beliefs will be exploded when the struggle against the
inequality, injustice, anarchy and barbarism of

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