Anti-capitalist European Left: capitalists not workers must pay for the crisis

May 6, 2009 -- British left groupings Socialist Resistance and the International Socialist Group have joined the Socialist Party, Socialist Workers Party, Scottish Socialist Party and others of the European anti-capitalist left in endorsing this statement for the European elections. The statement was agreed at a conference in Strasbourg on April 3, 2009.

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It's not for people and workers to pay for the crisis, the capitalists should pay!

The next European elections will be held during the worst crisis capitalism has known since 1929. Economic, social, financial, banking, food, climatic, it is a global, general crisis.

Once again, the ruling classes want to make workers and peoples pay for the crisis. Governments have given hundreds of billions to banks but at the same time millions of layoffs fall on employees. Unemployment is going through the roof. The purchasing power of wages is falling. The destruction of public services continues.

It's not for people and workers to pay for the crisis, the capitalists should pay!

This policy of European Union institutions has been rejected by the "No" votes in France, the Netherlands and Ireland.

We reject the plans of EU governments that save banks and not people.

We put forward an emergency social and democratic plan:

  • No layoffs! A stable and secure job with decent pay for all!
  • For an increase of wages and incomes in every country for workers, unemployed and pensioners!
  • Harmonisation of social rights in Europe upwards: minimum wages, reduction of work time without wage cuts, pensions and social security!
  • European cooperation in promoting social protection for the unemployed and the poor, and for common policies for the sustainability of public pensions!
  • For the defence and extension of public services, across Europe!
  • For a public health system guaranteeing equal access to medical care for all!
  • For the defence of public education: withdrawal of the Bologna reforms!
  • No to the payment of the deficits of failed banks, and for the creation of unified public banking and financial system under public and popular control! For the closure of all offshores! European countries must give the example starting to close the offshores located in their own territories which are responsible for 2/3 of the world offshore business!
  • For the cancellation of the Third World debt!
  • For the defence of the undocumented and for equal rights for all residents in Europe, whether "national" or from a foreign country!
  • For the legalisation of all undocumented immigrants!
  • For equal rights between men and women!
  • For women's rights, the right to free and safe contraception and abortion!
  • For LGBT rights and equal rights for heterosexual and homosexual couples!
  • For the repeal of anti-terrorist and laws and exceptional procedures!
  • For an ecological Europe, to fight effectively against climate change, we need a public service of energy production and distribution under the supervision of employees and consumers and we need to develop transport and housing public services!
  • No to war! Disband NATO and all European militaristic bodies! Withdraw foreign troops from Iraq and Afghanistan! Israeli army's withdrawal from the West Bank! End to the blockade of Gaza! Recognition of all national rights of the Palestinian people!

In these circumstances, and taking into account the particularities of each country, we are committed to building convergences in opposition against employers' and governments' attacks and at the same time to creating the conditions for a political alternative and an anti-capitalist pole based on the popular mobilisations, one which would stand for a Europe of social rights, and refuses any support of or participation in social-liberal governments with social-democratic parties or the centre left.

Indeed, what is needed is to break with capitalism and its logic. In this sense, the anti-capitalist European left put these aims in the perspective of the struggle for 21st century socialism, and commits itself to restarting the debate on questions of a new distribution of wealth, of property and of democracy.

On this basis, and in the framework of the choices of each organisation, the undersigned will intervene during the next weeks in the electoral campaign for the European Parliament.

The signatory organisations:

Belgium: Ligue communiste révolutionnaire, Parti socialiste de lutte

France: Nouveau Parti Anticapitaliste

Germany: internationale sozialistische linke, Revolutionär Sozialisticher

Great Britain: Socialist Party, Socialist Workers Party, International Socialist Group, Socialist Resistance

Greece: Antarsia (Anticapitalist Coalition) and organisations DEA, KEDA, KOE, Kokkino, Roza, Xekinima from Syriza (Radical Left Coalition)

Italy: Sinistra critica

Poland: Polska Partia Pracy

Portugal: Bloco de Esquerda

Scotland: Scottish Socialist Party

Spanish State: Izquierda Anticapitalista

Sweden: Socialistiska Partiet

Switzerland: Gauche Anticapitaliste, Mouvement pour le Socialisme, Solidarité

The Interventionistische Linke of Germany and the POR of Spanish State didn't take part in the meeting and sent solidarity messages.