For an Anticapitalist and Libertarian Movement
Women and men who wish to undertake a struggle on the basis of an alternative economical, political and cultural program
This is not an appeal but a proposal to struggle.
We witness and experience the misery, the offence to individual liberty and dignity, the devastation of nature perpetrated daily by a criminal capitalism.
One day a Court of Justice will have to be instituted against those responsible of these crimes against humanity.
But now, before all else, we must stop lamenting, make a determined effort and struggle.
We are women and men who follow differing political paths of social and environmental struggle, for civil rights, democracy and equality.
We are joined by the will, the passion and the anger not to give up or surrender.
Real Socialism has certainly collapsed in the past for its faults, but real Capitalism today is destroying the present and the future.
That is why the need arises to construct an alternative to the current economic, social and political system.
That is why today, more than ever before, we keep alive our roots, be they Communist and libertarian, antifascist and antiracist, feminist or environmental.
There is no possibility of liberation in compromise with the current authoritarian government imposed by society and the economy.
This has been understood by women and men of the Mediterranean, who are teaching us to rebel.
It has been understood by women and men in Latin America who are mobilizing for a Twenty-first Century Socialism.
It has been understood by all those who even at the doors of the strongholds of wealth and power have been crying: we are the 99%!
It has been understood by those women and men of Europe, who, from Greece to Iceland, from Spain to Cyprus have taken to the streets to overturn those austerity policies which are destroying any residue of a social state or democracy.
We feel, and want to be, a part of all this.
Europe today is governed by a regime imposed by the Troika and the Governments who support it. The people are no longer sovereign, but only debtors. All Governments are engaged in a social war against their own people. Democracy is reduced to a Television show.
We believe that, as in 1848 and in 1945, all of Europe has to liberate itself, as it did, first from the tyranny of absolute sovereigns, then from fascism, today from financial capitalism and its economic, political and cultural oligarchy.
We believe that precedence should be given to the need for revolutionary change.
We are not engaging in a vague appeal for unity.
We unite for a breakage with this Europe and with this capitalism, in order to construct a new common history.
Also in Italy critical thought, projects and practices for a mass anticapitalist movement must return to the forefront. Today all this is absent in Italy and we propose a program of reconstruction with its roots in social conflict.
We do not ignore the ruins that surround us. Until now all attempts to make a unified anticapitalist political project emerge from the social, civil, environmental and feminist struggles have failed. The political responsibilities for these failures can be identified, but they call for the consideration of a more fundamental question.
At present, the only fully legitimized class struggle is the one led by the rich against the poor, by the bosses against the workers, by those who hold power against those who don’t. All the needs, the rights and the freedom of the oppressed are instead in destructive internecine competition.
We believe in the existence of a deep connection between capitalist and patriarchal domination, between exploitation and commercialization, and that none of the needs of liberation can be sacrificed to others.
The workers’ dignity cannot be sacrificed in favour of the right to work, and neither can be preferred to the right to health care and to the safeguarding of the environment. No social or environmental struggle can have priority on women’s rights and self-determination. We refuse any compromise on the rights of the native born versus those of immigrants.
Self-proclaimed “liberal capitalism”, ever more astutely in these times of crisis, sets the libertarian needs of one side against the other, pulling the tight blanket of liberty in the most convenient direction. The young temporary employed against their fully employed parents, the environment against the workers, the rights of women against the rights of workers. The answer does not lie in the supremacy of one set of interests over another, but rather in reciprocal egalitarian recognition and the construction of a united stance in the conflict against common adversaries.
The greatest economic crisis since World War II has fallen upon Italy, and it will be impossible to overcome it by remaining entrenched in that uniform political thought called “reformist”, which, however, is only a culture of political compromise, a technique of power adopted by all Parties in Government, and whose prime objective is to impede or sterilize social conflict.
Italian democracy is subject to outside rule, as is shown by the transformation of the principle of a balanced budget into Constitutional Law, voted by the three parties in power (PD, Pdl and Monti). The fundamental choices, both political and economic, are defined by an automatic pilot, that is by the obligations and the rules imposed by the fiscal compact, by the treaties of Maastricht and Lisbon, and by the super government of the Troika.
All this has fallen upon a Democracy already devastated by twenty years of Berlusconi and by the deriving contrast conducted by the centre-left and the mainstream media. The “anti-Berlusconi” camp has often borrowed its own messages and principles from its adversary: principles such as governability, the central position of free-market liberalism, privatizations and anti-Communism. At times it has seemed that the main accusation levelled at Berlusconi was that of not being a true “right wing liberal”.
Also for this reason the request for change has been addressed to the Five Stars Movement. (M5S). This expresses a just, although insufficient need for a democratic break. A real democratic transformation will not take place in the absence of profound and radical social change. The powers of global capitalism and of the ruling caste are intertwined in an oligarchic power system which even governs the very concept of common sense through the control of mass communication. If the power of this oligarchy is not overturned, the damage to the ruling caste’s privileges will be marginal and have only a media effect. Real power will survive and mock us.
Change will not happen if the struggle against the bureaucratic castes will not be part of those against the exploitation of labour and the devastation of nature, against the mercantilist exploitation of lives and social inequalities, against patriarchal attitudes and violence to women.
At the beginning of the new century, the great Movement which brought about the events in Genoa appeared to have found the path towards a mass anticapitalist entity in which all conflicts could freely confront one another. The catastrophic experience of the Radical Left’s participation in the Prodi Government has destroyed this path.
A mass anticapitalist entity will have to be alternative both to the centre-left’s social-liberalism, and to the centre-right’s conservative values which, in Italy and in Europe – sometimes alternating, sometimes actually together – govern with the same social and economic political principles.
Privatizations, flexibility and precariousness of the working place, progressive cuts to public schooling, pensions and social services have been common choices of these two blocs as has been shown by the Monti Government which destroyed pensions and the “Article 18” with the support of both blocs and the silence of the Trade Unions.
Collusion among the Trade Unions has accompanied and shared responsibility for the regression in social welfare and workers rights. For this reason a radical alternative to existing policies must include the struggle to return to a democratic and independent Trade Union movement at the service of the working class.
“Alternative” today means above all NO to the Europe of the fiscal compact and austerity, imposed by the treaties and their obligations. We must also say NO to Nato’s military missions.
“Alternative” today means that after three decades of conservative policies we must first of all destroy mass unemployment.
“Alternative” means refusal of the bonds imposed by indebtedness, nationalization and socialization of Banks and Strategic Enterprises, the installation of true and diffuse democratic powers in the work-place, on the territory, within the Institutions. A great plan of public intervention is required to the benefit of millions of small enterprises, and the cancellation of all TAV (High Speed Transport Infrastructure) initiatives which destroy the environment.
“Alternative” means the construction, protection, re-appropriation and social management of common goods, against the commercialization of lives, of the environment, of health and of knowledge.
“Alternative” because we must newly undertake our march towards social equality, starting from the general reduction of working hours, the lowering of the pension age, the cancellation of laws on precarious labour, and of those on slavery and exploitation of migrant workers.
“Alternative” for the need to redistribute wealth from the top down, with a general and egalitarian increase in minimum wages and pensions and the establishment of a minimum guaranteed income.
“Alternative”, because none of this will be accomplished with the existing right-wing and left-wing political classes and with the current climate of collusion between bureaucracy and Trade Unions.
“Alternative” because of the need for an anticapitalist political movement in order to reconstruct strength and unity in all of the world oppressed and dispersed by the devastating precariousness which has dominated in these past twenty years.
We are part of that great majority which is today paying for the crisis, from public and private sector to independent workers to the prevailing manual and intellectual precariousness to the people of the great metropolitan centres, to the immigrants, to women expelled from their jobs and deprived of adequate social support.
We are with the populations of the South, who are doubly paying for the crisis, and who do not wish to fall victims to the economic and social desertification, to joblessness, to the exploitation of migrant labour and to the new wave of emigration.
We fight for the formation of a political representation which will not have, as top priority, the presence within the institutions, but which can be an instrument for the re-composition and reorganization of the social bloc of the oppressed. Nobody will need to feel shame or isolation for their poverty. Only struggle and solidarity can eliminate solitude.
We have to break with the concept of submission to the centre-left, with electoral opportunism, but also with the sectarian ideas which have brought the Italian Communist and anticapitalist left to the point of being the smallest and least influential in Europe. The path can be undertaken, as long as we have the courage of re-starting from a renewed base.
We propose to form an anticapitalist and libertarian political movement of women and men willing to struggle on the basis of a program of political, economic and cultural alternative with individual responsibilities and principles of a democracy of real participation with an open and pluralistic system of relationships. We want to construct this movement and its program by learning from past social struggles and current experience.
Our thoughts go to the lengthy resistance of the people of the Val di Susa, capable of mass mobilization, of direct action and of institutional conflict and initiative. We think of popular initiatives for consumer rights and the right to a living space, to the struggle of workers who spontaneously struck against the abrogation of Article 18, to that of migrant workers against forced labour, of the mobilization of students, teachers and researchers. All these struggles indicate a new, unified, spirit and new means of organization and participation. We want them to be the constituent elements of the political movement.
We still find ourselves in different experiences and different political and social organizations, but we believe in the urgent need for a new, shared path which should be open with no exclusions based on discrimination or prejudices.
For us, the only condition indispensable to begin the process is to share the belief in the need for the joint creation of a mass libertarian anticapitalist political movement. In alternative to and independent of the current political formations.
For this reason we are calling for a first encounter, open to all those who wish for confrontation and who express an interest in building a common path to construct the alternative.
With this encounter we want to initiate a common journey into the country’s struggles and suffering. At the end of the meeting we shall convene an assembly in which to take decisions for the future.
First meeting in Bologna. May 11, 2013