Angry Workers of the World: for working class inquiry
We can identify at least four dimensions of revolutionary organisation which have become detached from each other through the last decades of re-structuring and decline of working class movements, but which, under the current conditions of capitalist crisis, have to be – and can be! – addressed again in their totality.
1) Revolutionary Program
By this we mean a collective effort to understand the development of capitalism and the ‘communist movement’ in its historical and international dimension. The limitations of revolutionary efforts of the past, from the early cooperative movement, to the ‘statist’ models of the II. and III. Internationals to national liberation struggles have to be seen on their historical backgrounds. The analysis of the historical tendencies often degenerated into ‘political conservation of the program’, detached from the ‘real daily struggle’.
2) Analysis of Class Composition
Every organisational proposal to concrete struggles has to be based on thorough analysis of the already existing collective structures – set by the social nature of the production and reproduction process – and material divisions within the working class along the lines of gender, race, national status. Communism as a potential of liberation from state oppression and exploitation has to be unearthed from the interplay between capitalist socialisation of labour and the struggle within and beyond it. ‘Research’ about working class migration, sectorial changes, industrial strategies have become detached and in many cases turned into individual academic careers.
3) Organisation of Struggle
The revolutionary horizon develops out of the experiences of daily struggles, out of victories and defeats, or it doesn’t. We have to be able to propose ‘forms of organisation’ to other struggling workers, which make a material difference (a better life!) and which in their actual form express a ‘class perspective’. If we tie concrete struggles to the boundaries of formal representation, labour law, delegation, sectorial or national frame-works, then it does not only ‘ideologically’ compromise a ‘class perspective’, it will also undermine workers’ power in the long-run. This contradiction cannot be overcome formally in a syndicalist way, by ‘uniting’ single conflicts in a formal (politically revolutionary) organisation – the single conflicts themselves have to undergo the process of becoming social conflicts.
4) Social Community
In the old libertarian tradition we can say that the organisation itself in form and content has be a lively expression of its goal: a new community which allows us to be with each other in a more liberating way, questioning generational segregation, classic hetero-normative relationships and hierarchies and ‘functionalisation’ of human relationships in general. This needs conscious efforts, and it needs time, space and resources.
We are not voluntaristic, the gaps between these dimensions will only be reduced during times of general social upheaval, but we can reflect this in the form we theoretically and practically try to engage with the current social situation. We will have an informal process of reading and discussing relevant texts, of materially supporting struggles and of hopefully have a good time with each other while doing it. One practical expression is a regular small ‘workers’ paper’ – http://www.workerswildwest.wordpress.com