Platform proposal #3

Capitalism is over, if you want it

Society is characterised by poverty, hunger, war, environmental destruction, economic crisis, unemployment, recession and alienation. These are not unfortunate, unlucky events that have happened to us, these are the realities of the capitalist system.

Capitalism is a social relationship: one in which those that live by selling their labour, producing services of commodities, are robbed of the value they have created – it is turned, instead, into profit for the minority who own or control the means to produce; capital. This relationship between labour and capital, which is the foundation of capitalist society, is one of constant struggle, of separate and opposed interests. One based on need and the other based on profit.

These two forces are locked in a constant struggle for the future of humanity. The capitalist class – with its security forces, its media, its laws, its prisons, its courts – maintains control through punishment and force, when manipulation and mystification no longer works. The capitalist class is able to project and impose its world view and its interests across of society as a whole. Meanwhile those who form the majority of society, the working class, are removed from any meaningful political and economic control whatsoever.

We fight for a society that stands in complete contrast to this, a communist society. A society where each individual is free and equal with others. A society where patriarchy, racism, imperialism, environmental destruction and homophobia do not exist. Such a society is incompatible, not with our material capacities or with a human nature, but with the capitalism system. The conditions for any such society must be the end of all classes, class privilege and class rule. That means the expropriation of the means of production by the working class – organised collectively and democratically. The state and all its institutions – the judiciary, the police, the army – which serve to monitor, regulate, control and subjugate the population must be pulled down and dismantled.

A world which positively overcomes capitalism can only arise out of the collective action of the labouring majority. The struggle for the emancipation from the system of wage-labour, is the struggle for the revolutionary transformation of society. Capitalism is an international system, there can be no oasis of working class power, no national solutions, we must organise to fight across borders creating an international revolutionary movement. Revolution cannot be achieved on our behalf or through organs and institutions which are formed around the interests of other forces. It must be our own act and it must be through our own forms of organisation.

The weakness or absence of these forms of organisation, however, is not the whole picture – it is not a question of simply building as new. Also we must confront and deal with the failures and degenerations of previous and existing efforts. Stalinism, social democracy, reformism, nationalism, bureaucratisation etc, have all affected and damaged the left, its organisations and its politics. And these must be understood and positvely overcome.

It is within this picture – the objective need for an independent, revolutionary political organisation of the working class and the failures of its existing forms – that the Anti-Capitalist Initiative has been formed.

Constitution

1. The purpose of the ACI is to make a positive contribution towards the building of independent, political, revolutionary organisation of the working class – by bringing together anti-capitalists and those around the left, organised and unorganised, into common activity, building trust and working relationships at the grass-roots, and into political discussion and debate, working through our differences, understanding our failures and mapping out ways forward.

2. The ACI is open to, and open to working with, any individual or any group who supports this purpose.

3. All supporters of the ACI have a role in the democratic life of the network. A supporter is someone who, if able, pays regular money to the network and takes part in common activity organised locally and nationally.

4. The sovereign decision making body are supporter’s aggregates. In between aggregates a national coordinating committee will help link local groups and supporters. The committee will be made-up of elected delegates from local groups and supporters elected at national aggregates.

Signed:
Chris Strafford
Cat Rylance
Sinead Rylance
Alex Allan
Rachel Twaites

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3 Comments

  1. mark fletcher
    November 20, 2012 at 7:30 am · Reply

    New to this but would like to more about ACI. Also can you recommend best books to read about Leninism, Marx, Socialism and Communism. I used to be a Tory right capitalist but it is anathema to me now. I want to help the little man.

    • December 3, 2012 at 5:02 pm · Reply

      The Communist Manifesto (Marx and Engels), Socialism: Utopian and Scientific (Engels), and State and Revolution (Lenin) would be good places to start. My book list from “easiest” to “hardest” can be found here: http://planetanarchy.net/booklist.htm

  2. November 23, 2012 at 10:54 am · Reply

    Amendments to Platform 3

    Delete last two paragraphs and replace with the following two paragraphs:

    We know that Communism can only be established from below in the struggle against the state. This conception of Communism has nothing in common with the fake state socialism of the former Soviet Union,or the dictatorship over workers in China or the management of Capitalism by social Democracy. We learn lessons from the past,but we do not have all the answers.We are open to learning from the struggle against Capitalism today.

    Our Communist Organisation today must be a forum for the development of revolutionary activists,theoretically, practically and for their mutual support. We reject bureaucratic top down centralism in which leaders think for the members,often down to the smallest detail. There can be no Communism without grass roots democracy. For Communists, workers democracy is not an optional extra,but an indispensable aspect of our politics.

    Add one sentence at the end of point four of the proposed constitution:

    All representatives of the organisation will be accountable and recallable to aggregates and local branches.

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