Clajadep :: Red de divulgación e intercambios sobre autonomía y poder popular




By Professor J

Petras and other authors are blinded by pen and ink or by the Junior Woodchuck Guidebook. Petras’ text in Rebelion must be seen, in which he makes the struggle of the autonomies and local social spaces in the continent disappear with literary rhetoric. Having nothing more than clichés to say, the author runs his pencil in circles over the paper and ends up with nothing, blank pages. The same happens with the analysts committed to the miserable program of humanization of capitalism who support Lula, Chavez and Mercosur, having nothing to contribute except a wretched canticle of love to business interests, to Kirchner, to Bolivian nationalism and the other fireworks with which they try to breath life into their extinguished lanterns that only shine towards the same socialist state that undeniably failed precisely for being an instrument of capital development, which today the obstinate demagogues and reformists paint as “humanizing capitalism until it can be replaced” to win places in the governments of the states that oppress us, and invent social forums for distraction. They absolutely regretted taking their Porto Alegre Forum to Bombay, and are now doing everything in their power to bring it back. The Workers Party Comrades have already offered any amount of money to finance it, even before the next venue is discussed among the henchmen that will manage the machine in the territories dominated by the Indian state.

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, so the time is over for emotional manipulation, companion to other strategies, since those lines of action result in greater exploitation and repression of our peoples and it must be understood as such by those who, by supporting certain progressive lines on the continental scale, don’t hesitate to ally themselves with our enemies, the military, business interests, bourgeois parties and social democrats, crying crocodile tears for not achieving the hoped for “unity” behind which they want to tie us and subject us.

Repression has grown considerably. With the justification of delinquency [crime], drugs and other phenomena that they themselves support, the police forces are fortified against popular neighborhoods and encampments. The rapid action against struggles attempts to hide and undo the apparent, that from below there is an enormous rebellious capability that is expressed everywhere in the most different of ways. Counterinsurgency meetings are maintained at the highest level, the ministers of defense meet constantly, and Yankee troops train with no problem in almost all countries, the entire struggling left being considered terrorist. Police actions against what they call delinquency appear more and more in the newspapers. Strengthening of population control is perfected down to the finest detail. Given that, it is of no serious consequence for the state that the left goes into the government, as long as strategic matters are well controlled. They’re not terrorists after all, but rather moderate dialogists.

It’s very good that Kirchner has established bridges with Cuba, since this helps to break the blockade and avoid the threats of invasion, but it is very bad that sectors of the Argentinean left make their people pay the price of supporting Kirchner. We see the infamous dialogue of Alderete with Kirchner in La Matanza, from the so-called classist and combative current, that vile character on loan to tie his base to the Peronist project in order to win the next municipal or regional elections. Several leftists go around calling for protecting relations with Peronism, which is nothing more than insistence on the popular front politics of submission to the needs of capital.

Autonomies are frightening to these authors, since they involve the risk that the population self-organizes and doesn’t lend itself to the macroeconomic game of Mercosur and the stupidities of the Paris-Berlin-Moscow-Beijing axis. Nice words and strategies adorn the leftist media and many are reproduced by those who claim to be other, they speak of dispersion and call for uniting themselves, when it is precisely their “union” that weakens the popular forces that are constituted in local social spaces, since it is obvious that it’s all about alliances with business interests and upholding the FTAA and the rules of the IMF, source of the loudest applause for Lula. Just as they tried to get close to the Forums of Porto Alegre and Davos, now they are trying to attach their Frankenstein of Mercosur to the European Union (with all due respect to Frankenstein and its author). Some are still placing their bets on Carter and the Democrats to see if the USA “lessens” its aggression and insist that the bad guy is Bush and the Yankee empire, thus the leading lady doesn’t see where the danger is coming from and pays an assailant to save her. The enemy is not only the USA as these broken records keep repeating with their opportunistic song, but rather capital, wherever it comes from, like the fascist Aznar who walked around holding hands with Lula and the other honchos, that is heads, of the continent together with the little King, or like those who support Kirchner or the same ones who convene the Broad Front or the FMLN, in short, we are surrounded by good people that call on capital to be more human. Caramba! It’s like rape with Vaseline.

This business about “until we have something to substitute it with” is quite elegant, since it hypocritically hides the fact that peoples search for their own paths, just as they tell us that there is no reason to struggle, therefore we only need to try to soften the blows, while they, the saviors, the prophets, the leaders etc. go into government saying that it is in order to redirect resources to the poor, as if capital would sacrifice its continuity and its profit, which we all know do not depend on governments unless of course we return to state capitalism which is the snake oil that they sell us today, where governments and proprietors are the same, where wage earners continue being the same. The return of the sorcerers of neo-Keynesianism, the return to post-war popular front strategies.

The political impact and the profound significance of the “caracoles” and the juntas de buen gobierno [good government councils] which little by little are being convened in other localities within the territory of the Mexican state doing the same thing, only different, as well as the enormous mobilization and world support which the instigative word and action of the Zapatistas count on, cannot form part of the analysis of these post-socialists, under penalty of appreciation of the self-organization, autonomy and rebelliousness that is coming out of diverse places in this Abya Yala, baptized by the invaders in the name of a mercenary, a certain Vespucci.

Nor can the enormous forces of the Conaie [Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador) be measured, who without discussions or demagoguery withdrew from the government towards their bases, and from there are preparing the next onslaught, and their victories will be taken for continental moves for control of the government by the macro side, and not for what they are, that is, the _expression of local capability.

The occupations of municipalities and local blockades have never formed part of the reflections of these shoddy analysts, frightened by the emergence of local autonomy that asserts itself from the bottom in its territory of interconnected bodies, and which during the year now ending [according to the Gregorian calendar] has grown notably in almost all of the countries.

The occupation of haciendas [large land holdings] on the part of original [indigeneous] communities and campesinos in a wide variety of places is hidden in this demagogic literature, in order to place more value on the “truce’ that the MST has granted Lula, to legitimize the “national” programs of the left that control campesino sectors, and to move pawns behind the “struggle against the FTAA and for alimentary sovereignty”, functional objectives of the agrarian bourgeoisie with which it is hoped to fine tune a friendship in pursuit of acceptance of the lite left, which helps to give the state a facelift. The occupations and recuperations of lands are on the increase, and the accomplishment two days ago of thousands of Guarani and Caiona that entered four haciendas in Mato Grosso and are preparing to occupy another five is emblematic. Obviously it is not convenient to the left to highlight those struggles, since they are not considered in their script with those who are sideline participants in society. What’s more, of course, it “makes little waves” for the popular government of Lula, as Frei Betto, his staunchest defender, says.

In Bolivia, there has been no “failure” of the uprising, since those who hoped for victories only did so from the perspective of control of the central apparatus, something which the system did not permit, by making the castle move with Mesa. There have been notable advances in locations such as el Alto, Cotocachi and surprisingly even in the regions of Beni and the interior of Santa Cruz, but this can’t be discussed very much obviously since it would “make little waves” for Morales, who all those with a macro-continental strategy laud and applaud, going to the extreme of encouraging the rankest nationalism in desperation to have to help the man joined by “the masses”, and by the way, some military and business interests in the “defense of democracy” and the “peaceful overtaking of the state apparatus”. It couldn’t be clearer. An exposed chess game.

Another fact that is hidden and is only very rarely shown is how community and horizontal sentiments and practices have been forming in territories threatened by mining companies, dams, lumber companies etc., where Tambogrande, Esquel and Choropampa are only the tip of the iceberg in relation to the multiplicity of similar dynamics sprouting up in many places.

We can say the same about multiple initiatives such as student assemblies, media that value the autonomies, artistic-cultural activities, study groups, cultural centers, communal soup kitchens, committees of the unemployed, etc. In short, there is hardly a neighborhood or countryside in the continent that doesn’t include some initiative in pursuit of autonomy, self-management, and rebelliousness. Although many are still in diapers, that’s not what matters. What matters is that they are there.

And if that weren’t enough, in the coming days diverse meetings of autonomies are being held in the southern cone of the continent, especially in Brazil, Bolivia, the international meeting of Roca Negra, Argentina and the Days of the Wind and the Word in Chile.

No, neither Reformists nor Capitalists. This new battle will not be won just in order to go back to the old ways. The people have learned, finally, to develop their own paths of emancipation.

The year 2003 has not been as bad as they paint it.

This year, 2004, is really attended by great auspices.

Professor J