The fulcrum of the struggle

BRITAIN is currently embroiled in the most devastating and damaging class war in its history and the tragedy is that only one side — the ruling class — is doing all the fighting while we, the working class, are taking all the damage and failing to fight back in a properly organised and effective way.

We have some huge campaigns going: against austerity, to defend the NHS, against our country’s involvement in various imperialist wars and adventures abroad and against the many discriminations that divide our class: racism, sexism, homophobia and so on.

Our best activists are wearing themselves out on many fronts but we are not thinking as strategically as our enemy is. We are lacking people with a good Marxist-Leninist understanding of our enemy’s weak points and where we need to focus our fight back.

That weak point is of course their absolute need to keep on increasing their wealth and their profits.

When this country was still a major hub of manufacturing industry, with thousands of workers employed in factories, mines and mills — all regimented by the requirements of the production processes — the nub of the contradiction, the front line of the struggle was fairly obvious. Higher pay meant lower profits and low pay meant higher profits.

That is the irreconcilable contradiction that is at the heart of the struggle between our classes at its most stark and simple. And that is where the enemy has been hitting us hardest since the failure of the National Union of Mineworkers’ strike nearly 30 years ago. Since then our unions have been crippled by anti-union legislation and since then our wages have fallen dramatically while our enemies’ profits have risen as never before in history.

Wages in Britain have fallen steadily in real terms and compared to wages in other developed countries.

The gap has been so big it has caused problems for the ruling class through our ability to buy back the things we have produced. So they encouraged us to get into massive debt to keep on buying — selling ourselves in to the slavery of longer and longer hours and postponed retirement.

It is not surprising we are now too tired, anxious and depressed to think clearly. But we must do so. We must focus on the most important strategic issue — the one that will strengthen us and weaken them: the point of production, where our labour creates their profits.

That is where we must hit and the only effective weapon is strike action. And it must be proper strike action, not just one or two days here and there but all-out strike action. And focussing on the point of wealth creation means that public service unions are at a disadvantage because the ruling class does not give a damn if the unemployed get their giros late or pensioners have to wait long hours on hospital trolleys for treatment.

But they do care about the services that impact directly on their own lifestyles. And they care most about those who create their wealth.

This means the unions must work together in coordination — all for one and one for all. And they must focus firmly on the exact points where wealth is created or where a strike will have a direct impact on the lifestyles of the filthy rich. This will mean mass recruiting in currently unorganised sectors.

We must drive the union and Labour leaderships into action or sweep them aside for new leaders who will recognise our class enemy and lead the attack against them.

We must be ready, prepared and united for vicious backlashes and heightened efforts to divide us. But we must go on the offensive or face a future of poverty and destitution with fewer and fewer essential public services.