Global Health Crisis: They Are at War… Against Us!
Governments and bosses claim to be at war with coronavirus. In reality, it is a war against our social class that they are waging. A war against us for their profits!
The global health crisis is largely a consequence of the capitalist system.
Of course, we do not mean by this that the virus was created by capitalism; but the human disaster we are experiencing is due to capitalism. Governments around the world make the same choices, even if it is to a slightly different degree: they started by diminishing the extent of the epidemic, not because of ignorance but because management, the shareholders, the capitalists had as priority the safeguarding of their profits. The profits of a minority, against the health of billions of humans!
Once the crisis is in place, the damage of capitalism comes back to us.
- Lack of infrastructure, staff, resources in all areas of health: this is the result of the destruction of public services in one part of the world, of their almost non-existence in the other part.
- Lack of protective equipment: masks, hydro-alcoholic gel, screening tests, respirators, etc. But factories continue to produce weapons. Capitalists see only their profits, not the collective interest.
- In several countries, researchers testify that their scientific work on the virus has been abandoned in recent years for budgetary reasons. Capitalists prefer to invest in multinational pharmaceutical companies that dictate their drug laws.
During the Crisis, Business Continues!
With regard to the world of work, the capitalists are fierce:
- They allow a multitude of companies which are not essential to the life of the population to continue operating despite the health risks such as the current one. To continue to earn money, capitalists are putting the health and lives of millions of workers in the world at great risk.
- In the really essential sectors (which should be limited to what is directly related to health, food and access to gas, electricity, water…), the employers put forward ‘barrier gestures’, transferring the responsibility to individuals. But on the one hand, in many companies, nothing is being done to make these ‘barrier gestures’ applicable; on the other hand, they are not enough. It is the whole organization of work that must be reviewed, in terms of the health of each and every one. And this, it is not the capitalists who do not work who are best placed to define it: it is up to us to do it, in every department, establishment, enterprise, in activity because it is really indispensable.
- Capitalists are using this health crisis to further restrict our rights, our social conquests. In each country, a large part of ‘emergency measures’ is to address working time, leave, wages, the right to strike, etc.
- The situation is even worse in the regions of the world that are the direct victims of colonialism: people know beyond misery; the health crisis can only have terrible consequences.
Resistance Has Been Organized
They are complicated to implement in the context we know. The member organizations of the International Trade Union Network of Solidarity and Struggles do not want to line up slogans, for the sole pleasure of appearing ‘radical’. What we want, from the places of work and life and by freely federating ourselves, by coordinating ourselves, including internationally, is to build a massive popular movement of resistance and conquest.
- Let us support and make known the struggles of all the regions of the world.
- Let us gather by professional sectors, but also to defend specific rights and achieve social equality (women, migrants, populations oppressed for ‘racial’ reasons, …)
- Let us not allow the poorest, the most precarious, to pay for the health crisis.
- All workers, regardless of their status (wage earners, self-employed, unemployed, temporary workers, seasonal workers, etc.) must have a guaranteed income of 100%, with a guaranteed minimum for all based on the cost of living in the country.
- Let us take our affairs into our own hands, in the workplace and in our own lives! Governments, public authorities and states are instruments at the service of capitalism.
- Requisition of companies, services, shops, public places, necessary to respond to the health emergency!
Let us no longer allow the capitalists to organize planetary catastrophes! •
This article first published on the LabourSolidarity.org website.