Venezuela, Labour Day 2003
Posted: Thursday, May 1, 2003
By Franz J. T. Lee www.franz-lee.org
To Learn to Act and Think the Revolution
A spectre is haunting the Fourth Reich -- the spectre of Chavéz!
All the oligarchic powers in Venezuela and abroad have entered into a fascist, neo-liberal alliance to exorcise this spectre: Otto Reich and CAP, Aznar and Estanga, Ortega and Gaviria, "Friends of Venezuela" and Enemies of "Castro-Communism". Where is the "party" in the "opposition" that did not decry Chavéz as a "dictator", as a "tyrant"? Where is the anti-governmental "stormtrooper of the apocalypsis" that did not try to assassinate his character?
After the brutal massacre of dozens of bolivarians, especially between April 11 and 13, 2002, after various serious attempts of political and economic coups, that normally no oppressive government ever would have survived, now Chavéz is No. 1 on the hit list of the mercenary "Death Squads". With the most democratic constitution that the world ever has seen in the hand, for the majority of Venezuelans, for 85% of 24 million people, who have been languishing in critical misery and poverty over the last half-a-century, two things remain very clearly: No puede ser!! Uh, Ah, Chavéz no se va!! Their President must remain in power, if necessary, till 2021.
Never mind the Damocles Sword of global fascist "shock and awe", of a possible foreign intervensionist "awestruck" over Caracas, the Bolivarian Republic is fulfilling its historic, social order, demonstrating praxically to the world a viable, possible alternative to neo-liberal savagery in Venezuela, in Latin America, and elsewhere. Definitely, the belligerent, corporate oil mongrels of Washington, London and Madrid, in their global fascist megalomania, first would have to eradicate every single worker, peasant, buhonero, child or bolivarian, in barbaric invasion, would have to raze the whole of Venezuela to the ground, in their forward march of trying to establish a Global Fourth Empire. They would have to develop arms against "miracles", against a people in arms, to eliminate all the people's armed forces, would have to commit war crimes against a revolution in arms, in the arms and hearts of millions across the globe. They would have to extinguish the very Bolivarian revolutionary spirit from the very globe.
Now, what have the above got to do with "Labour"? With May 1, with Labour Day? Yesterday, why did Chavéz, in a speech to the nation, so vehemently attack Capital and Capitalism? Why does Lula speak about a "class war" in Latin America?
Looking through my window here in Mérida, outside there, at the foot of Pico Bolivar, everything is still near and clear, simple and easy, only a limited panorama enters our vision. Higher up, things already move to a distance, they are seen in another context, more related, complex and they can only be reflected as such. To explain this complex, complicated matter to someone who forever has been living, acting and thinking in a flat limited world, is well-nigh impossible. For her/him to understand concepts like Labour, Ideology or Revolution, s(he) must make some intellectual effort, must ascend Pico Bolivar, at least to the second station of the "teleférico", of the cable car, lying in the middle part.
Who reaches the top, has an all round view, see things in the far distance, everything appears vague, cloudy and intangible, but s(he) can see all sorts of relations, have a global vision. And because s(he) has seen the other levels and degrees already, this mension can be used for precise, incisive and decisive investigation and research work, enabling her/him, to mount other "inaccessible" heights and depths, to reach other microscopic and macroscopic spheres of productive world revolution and creative, galactic emancipation.
This has to be kept in mind, in the Bolivarian schools and people's universities, where revolutionary práxis and theory have to be developed, studied, applied. To mix up the levels, degrees and mensions of things, of reality, can only lead to confusion, to reactionary "escualidism", to political bankruptcy of the so-called "opposition".
In short, simple things, like conserving potable water, not to sing more than one song under the shower, realities that are able to be captured by an opressed, uniformal mind, can and must be expressed straightforwardly as levels, and as such, they could be understood precisely. Complex things, like Práxis and Theory, like Ideology and Practice, cannot be expressed as simplicity, it is not their natural habitat. They presuppose intellectual work, social reflection and intellectual reproduction. Vague things like revolution and emancipation, include simple and complex issues, but scientifically and philosophically, they can only be seen rationally, with real, true Reason, with Wisdom, and should be understood and explained in an opaque fashion; to explain them in a simple and complex way, as catechism or manual for beginners, is simply a useless task, will just call turmoil and devastating typhoons on the scene, and this will transform itself into an ill wind which blows nobody "good".
In real socialization, true education, there are three legitimate ways to express any "event": simply, complex and vague, thus, reflecting its even, uneven and combined development. The most precise scientific and philosophic method is precisely the latter, no matter how "concrete" we generally want to be, to be down to earth. Creatively, the Bolivarian Revolution has to be acted, be thought, be formulated transhistorically, it needs a Práxis-Theory, that considers political economy, social class differences, the labour struggle, its internal, intensive "class struggle", a philosophy that surpasses all forms of global lies, ideology and mind control.
Everybody, every Venezuelan worker, every Bolivarian should know what is Labour, what is a Labourer, what is Capital, what is Capitalism; should learn the transhistoric lessons, resulting from such gruesome phenomena like September 11 or April 11, the hard way, by her- or himself, by means of simple Práxis, complex Theory and vague Emancipation.
Very briefly, in our conception of History, there are, exist and transcend various relations between Nature and Society; one of them is Labour, which forms the very essence and existence of the Patria, of the Fatherland. This Relation, Labour, we identified as Alienation, as the process of Estrangement itself in History. Hence, it is not Labour which is alienated, and that it should be emancipated from Alienation. Alienation is Labour per se, and Labour is Alienation ab ovo. Creativity, Creation, Recreation, are certain identifiable things, however, Labour, Work, are completely different things.
Ever since the 19th century "Social Democracy", ever since the 20th century "October Revolution", a lot has changed within the international working class, from war to war it was transformed, has transformed itself. Now, in the Third Millennium, Workers of the World, Quo vadis? What do you have to lose? Your "golden" chains? No! Meanwhile, your very heads!
Looking at the British "mad cows", looking at the US-British human butchery in Iraq, it's Labour Day, 2003. May Day! May Day!! It's S.O.S.! Millions of useless "cattle", ten thousands of dirty, unciivilized "Arabs", were slaughtered like "Jews"; they were burnt in a horrible nazi "holocaust". Look at the fascist, heinous "awestruck" in Baghdad!! We thought that those times were gone; we still wonder how it could have happened at all. But, Big Brother is here! He is ignipotent, he is omnipotent, blows anything, from Twin Towers to the Cradle of Humanity, to Mesopotamia, to blazes!
When absolutist feudalism was toppled by the French Revolution, when the Industrial Revolution was driving the serfs and peasants off the lands because their agricultural labour was obsolete, Vagrant Laws -- especially under Henry VIII already, by hundred thousands -- just massacred the unwanted en masse. Of course, then, the modern working class, the proletariat, the future physical labourers were also born, came of age.
Now, we are experiencing another Global Technological and Nanotechnological Transvolution, a Revolution, that is ushering in a post-productive mode of existence, mainly utilizing "intellectual labour forces", thus condemning physical labour forces to extinction; globally, over the last decades, machines, computers, the intelligentsia drove hundreds of thousands of physical labourers into dire poverty, into obsolescence.
After Iraq, more massive global Euro-American butcheries are on the global order of the day; in the 20th century, it was called fascism or nazism. Today it is called "Anti-Terrorism", "Civilization", the New World Order or Globalization. And, the international working class, the obsolete sector, is now the "terrorist class". Long live the "terrorist class"! You have nothing to lose, except your "terror"! It's Civilization or Barbarism! It's Hobson's Choice!
Until now, in all modes of production, War supposedly had cured all Labour Problems -- will it succeed this time? Will the pipe-dreams of the giga-corporations in the oil-rich Persian and Caspian regions sweep away the physical labour class by the billions? Can the O.78% of the current working class, the intellectual labourers, still save humanity? Can the Venezuelan práxico-theoretical "Miracle of Caracas", the emancipatory result of decades of revolutionary dedication, light the transhistoric trail towards historic beauty, truth and love?