World communist parties: "Socialism is the future"

athens451x300

ATHENS - "Socialism is the future" was the theme of a meeting here of communist and workers parties from 59 countries last month. The question, of course, was how to get to socialism. Varied views were expressed on this. (Note to Glenn Beck types who conjure up a monolithic "world communist conspiracy": it just ain't so.)

At the same time, the meeting demonstrated that those who say socialism is dead need to think again.

An array of countries were represented where communist and workers parties lead or are part of the government. These include not only countries like Cuba, Vietnam and Laos, but also, for example, Guyana, where the People's Progressive Party has led the government for 19 years; South Africa, where communists, as members of the African National Congress, serve in government; Cyprus, whose president is a leader of the Progressive Party of Working People (AKEL); and a number of Latin American countries such as Brazil and Paraguay, where communists hold positions in governments led by allied progressive forces.

The gathering, hosted by the Communist Party of Greece, was held Dec. 9-11 at the height of the economic crisis there.

Pointing to "the deep and prolonged capitalist crisis" prevailing internationally, including in the U.S., the meeting's final statement noted, "It becomes increasingly obvious for millions of working people that the crisis is a crisis of the system."

Many speakers referred to the Occupy Wall Street movement as an indication of this emerging sentiment. The Communist Party USA delegate spoke of a "surge in united action by labor and major organizations of the African American and Latino people and other democratic forces."

The Portuguese Communist Party representative said, "The attempt to make working people pay for the crisis is spurring the organized working-class struggle in several countries ... and leading to hugely diverse demonstrations that reveal capitalism's shrinking support base, and the availability of other anti-monopoly strata to struggle."

He continued, "There is a potential to build broad social alliances that ... can contribute toward a needed struggle against the dominant big-business policies and toward building democratic, patriotic and anti-monopoly alternatives."

The South African delegate emphasized that the whole of the left "needs to take up in earnest [the] ecological destruction caused by the rampant accumulation of capitalism." The meeting adopted the South African Communist Party's proposal for an international conference of communist and workers parties specifically on climate justice, to be held in 2012 in South Africa.

Discussion was also shaped by the "Arab Spring" uprisings and continuing popular struggles in North Africa and the Middle East.

The Turkish Communist Party's delegate warned that today's imperialist policymakers see "political Islam" - groups like the Muslim Brotherhood or Turkey's ruling Islamist party - as "compatible" with imperialism.

"The Muslim Brothers are ready to serve the imperialists," the Jordanian Communist Party representative said. U.S. policy, she said, "is based on creating an alliance with the Islamists and even the fundamentalists." The Lebanese representative declared that "Turkey is spearheading the imperialist efforts in the Arab world and the Middle East."

Likewise, several Middle Eastern parties warned that the feudal Gulf states are acting as agents of the U.S. and other capitalist powers, funneling cash, arms and other forms of assistance to "strengthen the conservatives and the Islamists," as the Jordanian representative put it.

As to how to deal with the current crisis and how to get to socialism, parties projected differing approaches.

The leader of the Communist Party of Greece said no proposal to deal with the crisis can "constitute a pro-people way out ... unless it poses as a question of principle the rupture ... with capitalist ownership, its state institutions, its international alliances."

She spoke of "the regroupment of the workers' and people's movement with a clear anti-imperialist antimonopoly orientation, anti-capitalist in the final analysis." A policy of alliances, she said, can go only two ways: either aim at the prolongation of bourgeois political power, or aim for the overthrow of the bourgeois government.

On the other hand, the representative of the Communist Party of Brazil (PCdoB) spoke of the participation of communist parties in Latin America and the Caribbean in different kinds of broad progressive political fronts that govern their countries. These fronts, he said, "are part of a tactical process of accumulation of forces, within the borders of capitalism." This, he said, advances the strategic objective of winning political power in order to start the transition to socialism.

He, and a number of others, emphasized that "there is not a single and non-historical model of revolutionary process neither of construction of socialism."

"What we have is a set of principles, formulated by Marx and Lenin and developed by other revolutionaries. Socialism is universal as a general theory and desire for freedom of the working class and the peoples in the entire world. But socialism takes on national features ... it is accomplished according to the social formation and the particular historical conditions of each people."

That, he said, requires from communists, "in each country, the elaboration of original programs and the formulation of strategies and tactics that are adequate to present times."

Photo: Representatives from the Americas, South Africa and Iran listen to the discussion at the 13th Meeting of Communist and Workers Parties, Athens, Dec. 8, 2011. Solidnet 

 

Post your comment

Comments are moderated. See guidelines here.

Comments

  • I am glad to read the above comment about socialism.

    In the old days, the so-called "socialism" was a notation
    when the production means were become "state-owned" or "whole people owned".

    However, what is the correct definition about "socialism" nowadays?

    Posted by M.L.Lim, 12/07/2013 8:23pm (7 months ago)

  • Im glad to read that there is a broad and lively interest in all parts of the world, in working towards a socialist transformation of our societies (and the global society aswell). It soothes my heart and build my optimism. But...

    As long as there is no concensus on what we even mean by a socialist society and as long as there is no consensus on a working alternative to market capitalism and especially corporate capitalism, there can never be a gathering of any momentum. And the socialist movements will never be able to soak up the frustrated workers and people. If we are lucky, they will not seek solutions in fascism and the far right. And that is if we are lucky!

    So, in order to progress we as socialist must come to an agreement on what our global agenda is. At least in some rough sketches. Then there can of course be room for individually and locally differencies on the smaller scales.

    I would - most humbly - suggest that we build a clear and easy to understand global agenda. Suited for this time and this age. And I - most humbly - suggest that it will be centered on how to build a global banking system that works for the benefit of the people. Thereby I mean a banking system owned by the small scale customers. A banking system that cuts out the risky investment sectors, that have caused the global banking collapses we are now living with the consequences of. These new banks does not (in my opinion) have to be state owned. And they could even be centered around locally conglomerates of small local businesses. These businesses can have socialist structures or not.

    These would be my remarks and suggestions. Thank you for your time!

    Posted by Lasse, 03/24/2013 2:40pm (1 year ago)

  • In 2035 to 2040 me and my comrades will be leading a revolution. I have currently 35 followers at my school and this will not happen in the U.S. or in any continent but in a place that has one communist country.


    Me and my friends designed a new gov. type


    : ) Keep waiting my comrades.

    Posted by , 03/20/2013 10:49pm (1 year ago)

  • How about trying another strategy than trying to overthrow the system? Why not develop new, better systems that people will naturally gravitate to because they meet their needs better?

    I've developed a new economic system, which I've called Genesis. It is deliberately designed as a transition to an evolutionary new economic system, which will be worked out by people as we go along.

    Genesis has quite different basic principles than capitalism, far more aligned to communist and socialist ideals... an economic system based on quality of life for everyone and stewardship of the planet, not profit. A system that rewards altruism and taking care of each other. A system that starts in the money matrix, but opens the door to a credit system which operates only slightly differently than using money, at least in the beginning, but is inclusive in the way it is designed for everyone to flourish, not just 1%.

    Let me know if you are interested in my ideas. I can be reached at my personal email, libertyferall@gmail.com. I am presently staying in Oakland, California after having spent the past seven years in Asia.

    Posted by Ariel Ky, 03/16/2013 9:04pm (1 year ago)

  • Nice to Hear. Long live and Success towards a Communist World. Red will bring Warm Feelings. No room for Chill or Cold.
    Let have Peace. Who instigated the Muslims, its US backed CIA. People made to die in religious wars, just for the sake of the Richness and Oil they gain.
    Why back the takers of others sovereign land? Isn't that a Crime. When is Benjamin Nethanyahu going to be tried in an International Human Rights Court.

    Posted by Javeed R.A, 01/17/2013 4:32am (1 year ago)

  • I believe that socialism is the future. Why should only the rich get special treatment. All people are created equal as said in th Declaration of Independence and listed in our bill of rights. Communism is the future!

    Posted by Andrew Crain, 01/14/2013 11:38pm (1 year ago)

  • To the guy below me, find a political forum with communists and ask if u want a long answer. A short one is preatty much that communism is very, very new in relation to other political bodies. So far out side forces like aggressive capitalists and embargoes have often times made communism into a horrible thing, but we are working there. Capitalism and democracy have been around a lot longer and are still killing people. But we know we are on the right path, and in time do will you.

    Posted by Jonah, 09/17/2012 11:47pm (2 years ago)

  • Let me start of by saying I am not nor will ever be a communist. I am trying to understand the logic in your arguments that advocate communism as a means of stabilizing economies, poverty and any other social issue that countries face every day. How does a communist govt create money for supplying the masses with food and shelter? If everyone is treated equally, what about the people that don't care about their fellow man or choose not to help work for the greater good? If some choose not to work, should they receive equal support from the govt as the man that does work? Why are things like individualism and self sufficiency demonized in a communist world? Why do you feel that communism hasn't succeeded in the world if it is the best choice for the people? Does anyone feel that soviet Russia abused the masses at the height of its communist reign? To me, it seems no one ever rose above poverty in communism, it just brought everyone else down to that level. I am not trying to pick a fight, I just want to hear arguments for your beliefs. Thanks for the consideration of my questions.

    Posted by Will, 08/30/2012 5:36pm (2 years ago)

  • Thanks for this great and encouraging article. The South African Comrades are right in the no issue is more important than the climate and the destructive force of capitalism which threatens the future of life on earth.

    Also the Brazilian comrades make an important point, as does Ricardo Alarcon in and interview on Marxism Leninism Today, which is that there is not one model of socialism that fits all, though the principles and science or Marxism-Leninism may be universally applicable, the application and type of socialisms will vary based on culture and concrete conditions.

    The 99% movement is vital in that it goes to the root of capitalist inequity and brings forth class consciousness. We as Communists must be involved at the core bringing our experience, class perspective and understanding of the beast as well as the antidote of socialism to that struggle.

    Posted by Al, 04/24/2012 1:31pm (2 years ago)

  • As long as we use money as a medium of exchange, we will always have poverty. It's the basic economic principle of supply and demand. There must be a constant and increasing demand for money; otherwise it's valueless. Those who most need money must continually labor for it simply to survive. The more people need it, the more willing they are to do abominable things to get it. Wealthy and politically powerful people control the money supply, restricting global trade for profits. Used for world domination and the spread of terrorism, those who control it wage wars and pass trade agreements impoverishing the many to benefit the few. We don't have to barter individual goods and products. By voluntarily using our skills and abilities to benefit humanity by structuring service, social and industrial unions to produce, develop and distribute the world's resources we can abolish the overwhelming social ills caused by money: poverty, homelessness, global environmental destruction, waste, illiteracy, war, injustice, crime, slavery, governmental and corporate corruption and fraud, overpopulation and ill health around the world. Only by abolishing money can international cooperation secure genuine world peace, aided by the use of Esperanto, the international language of peace.

    excerpt from: "Ultimate Poverty, Unlimited Wealth" <antigoldrush.com>

    Posted by Timothy Gilmore, 04/14/2012 11:09am (2 years ago)

1 2 3 next »

RSS feed for comments on this page | RSS feed for all comments