THE SCAM OF THE “BOLIVARIAN REVOLUTION”
THE RISE AND DECLINE
This work brings together a series of articles and letters published between 2013 and 2014 in “The International Worker Organizer” and on the website www.flti-ci.org, publications of the Leninist Trotskyist International Fraction, that account for the bankruptcy of the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela.
The situation that exists there has aroused great attention in wide swathes of the working class. What 15 years ago Castro and the world left perfidiously presented as “21st century socialism” today is a nightmare for the exploited masses. It is the end of a tragedy: the decline of Chavezism, Venezuela surrendered to imperialism, the IMF and the big Wall Street banks, while the workers pile up in the trash looking for some food among the waste and the oligarchy tries to return to power with the MUD.
This is the outcome contemplated by Marxism for every bourgeois nationalist experiment in the colonial and semi-colonial world since the Left Opposition of the Third International drew the lessons of the Chinese Revolution of 1925-27. Like all possessing classes, the native bourgeoisies fear the working class more than imperialism, before which they end up surrendering and agreeing sooner or later.
Chavezism ascended almost 20 years ago as a bourgeois nationalist phenomenon of expropriation of the workers’ and peasants’ revolution in Latin America, with a policy of deception, of class collaboration, promoted together with Castro and Stalinism from the World Social Forum. Chavez played the role of indirect agent of imperialism, defending private property against the revolution, while using the masses, which he controlled in a determined manner, to dispute imperialism over a greater slice of the oil rent for this service. But as soon as he managed to defeat the masses, Chavezism fulfilled its historical role and inevitably became a direct instrument of Yankee imperialism.
That is the true character of the last years of the Chavez and Maduro government: after strangulating the anti-imperialist struggle started in the Caracazo, the Bolivarian native bourgeoisie agreed with Obama and the oligarchy –whom they never touched a property-, it submitted to Wall Street and via the IMF handed Venezuela to it on a platter. What we see today is the end of a tragedy announced. The government of Maduro, supported by the generals of the Armed Forces and supported by imperialism and the MUD, ended up applying the hunger program of the “right” in blood and fire against the working class. We could say that, in this sense, the last Chavez and Maduro himself are not the Peron of 1946-1955, who took limited measures against imperialism, but the Peron of the ‘70s, who organized the Triple A against the Argentine working class.
But this agreement with Obama and the oligarchy was not “national”, but the expression of the Obama-Castro pact on a continental level. The Castro and the Cuban Communist Party restored capitalism in Cuba in partnership with imperialism. Castro and Chavez subjected the US working class to the “democratic” imperialist Obama against the “fascist” Bush. The “Peace Accords” of Havana between Santos and the FARC today mean the massacre of workers’ and peasants’ resistance in Colombia. The Bolivarians were no more than a detour in the imperialist subjugation of Latin America.
This ABC of Marxist theory on the role of the native bourgeoisies was concealed by the LIT, the American and English SWPs, the UIT, the PTS, etc. Today they speak of the “political independence” of the proletariat while during these years they offered critical political support to Chavez in one way or another. They never called to face Chavezism because they said that the masses supported it and they did not have to be separated from them. From the UNT they called to collect “10 million votes to Chavez.” They supported him politically against “imperialist aggression”. They permanently subjected the workers to the decisions of the Chavist Ministry of Labor. When the MUD arose they refused to face Maduro because there was a supposed “fascist coup” in progress and “there was no need to play the game to the right”, as it can be seen in the letters to the current El Topo Obrero included in this job.
And while these currents - absolutely submitted to the Castroist policy – made the working class kneel before the Chavist bourgeoisie, they lamented that it does not “consistently confront the right”. As the theory of the Permanent Revolution proposes, only the working class with the socialist revolution could prevent Venezuela from ending up in the grip of Wall Street and that the oligarchy and reaction rise again, as they did since 2012. The more they subjected the working class to Chavezism, the more the oligarchy raised its head. Revealing the internal mechanics of this historical process is the object of “Ascent and decline of Chavezism”.
Part I begins with “The Decline of Chavezism” with an article from March 2014, when the second wave of protests led by the MUD against Maduro had begun.
Part II is a historical summary of the Bolivarian Revolution published in March 2013, after the death of Chavez, which shows why it was a scam for the exploited, a political expropriation of the Caracazo’s struggle to control and strangle it, and how he won.
Part III brings together two letters and a polemic against the pro-Bolivarian left that raises, in one way or another, the strategy of revolution by stages of Stalinism: first, all in defense of democracy, and then, the struggle for the socialist revolution. The letters date back to April 2013 and are addressed to El Topo Obrero, in the midst of the political crisis following Chavez’s death, when the world left denounced a “fascist coup” by the “right” and imperialism, demonstrating how most of the leftist currents in Venezuela refused to raise the fall of Maduro. The controversy that we include is against the strategy of democratization of the regime of the Bolivarian Constitution that raises the whole of the Venezuelan left.
And as a closing, Part IV contains a declaration of July 2016, which gives an account of the barbarity lived by the exploited, and of the politics of bloody repression against the working class by Chavezism and the generals of the Armed Forces when the working class starred in the May-June hunger uprisings, which arrived in Caracas and demanded the fall of Maduro.
“Ascent and decline of Chavezism” addresses all these issues with the method of Marxism, in documents prepared in the heat of events, without false objectivism, reflecting the living intervention of the revolutionary socialists in the events, against the programs of collaboration of classes of the Venezuelan and the world left. Therefore, this work also faces in the theoretical field the revisionism in Marxism carried out by the renegades of Trotskyism, which, as we demonstrate in this work, adopted the theories of Stalinism to justify their submission to the native bourgeoisies.
Against them, the full confirmation of the characterizations and predictions raised in these articles demonstrate the theoretical superiority of Marxism as a scientific method, not only to orient itself in revolutionary politics but also to understand the great social phenomena of modern capitalism.•
The decline of Chavezism
At the beginning of 2014, the “Bolivarian Republic” was crossed by a new political crisis and a brutal economic bankruptcy. Venezuela was once again strangled by the IMF and the imperialist bankers. IMF orders: crash is here and the rulers have decided the ones to pay are the masses. Maduro is supported by the Army forces in order to attack the workers and people, while the right wing stands up to end his work.
For many weeks, the demonstration of the middle working class in the big cities, which were repressed by the police forces and the government gangs, with more than 10 deaths, hundreds wounded and arrested, shook Venezuela, where a political crisis was open.
Chavezism, Castroism and the entire left of the WSF denounced an “attempt of a fascist coup” against Maduro’s government and “the revolution”, led by a sector of MUD led by Leopoldo Lopez and Corina Machado.
This International campaign against the “fascist coup” is a big cheat to the exploited to hide that the one who is giving a huge attack to the working class and the worker masses in Venezuela and applying the IMF plan today is Maduro’s government which imperialism uses as a lemon, which need to be fully squeezed against the masses.
In November-December of 2013 a wave of worker fighting started in response to devaluation, inflation, high cost of living. Hundreds and hundreds of agreements are frozen in the Labor Ministry, which means to freeze for 4 years the wages in a country where inflation goes between 25 to 30% per year. This wave of strikes ended with the most brutal repression, with workers arrested, dismissals, and factories evicted, today under the supervision of the army.
Reformism and renegades of Trotskyism said that there was a “coup of the right wing against Maduro”. For some of them, there are conditions for it and for others there are still no conditions. But for all, Maduro is “inconsistent” to “fight against the right wing”. Everyone is looking to put the working class as a force of pressure so Maduro contains the right wing. For that reason, this left affirmed Maduro “capitulates” to the right. This is to poison the consciousness of the world working class and tie the hands of the Venezuelan proletariat so it does not fight for its demands. Paralyzing the proletariat forces, preventing it from breaking out with their current demands and fighting against Maduro’s attack and “Bolivarian” is to create the conditions so today the “right” wing stands up and even it prepares new attempted coups in the future.
They are enemies to call and organize a GENERAL STRIKE against the government attack and millionaires generals under the command of Cabello. “General Strike?” they will ask. “But this is kind to support López,” they will tell us. What does this mean? In order not to “support López,” the workers must passively accept being killed by hunger, repression and lose their conquests... but that’s the plan of Lopez and IMF, applied by Maduro today.
It is, from the left, to demand from the masses and from the working class that it is they who pay for the crisis, without quarrel and if not, there will be repression, physical attacks and Anti-strike Law, just as Chavezism does in its decline and bankruptcy. A handcuffed, repressed, dispersed working class, unable to face the brutal attack that the “Bolivarians” discharge on behalf of the IMF, is the shortest way to strengthen the “right” and for it to stand up.
We must be clear. Maduro supported by Capriles and Obama, after national and local elections in 2013, is the one leading the attack on workers and people. If we do not stop it on time, it means to create the conditions to take the Venezuelan proletariat to the worst of defeats.
As at the time of the regime Agreement of Punto Fijo in the late ‘80s, today it is discussed when and who will apply the “oil hike price” against the masses, to get 15,500 million dollars for the debt and interest required by IMF to take its usury. Reformism and the chatter of the “Bolivarian revolution” seek to numb the masses and tie their hands and then execute them with a historic tax hike.
As a “squeezed lemon”,
Obama and Capriles supported
the government of Maduro and the millionaire boli-bourgeoisie attacking the working class
and the poor
The farce of the “Bolivarian revolution” was to expropriate the real worker’s and peasant’s revolution across the continent that broke out at the beginning of 21st century and once the Bolivarian succeeded, they changed Venezuela into a real “banana republic” to IMF. The recent meeting of CELAC in Havana, governments of ALBA, MERCOSUR and NAFTA, led by UN and IMF, was to strengthen Latin American governments to intensify the attack against the masses on account of the transnational companies, Wall Street and the imperialist powers.
So the entire Venezuelan situation is reduced to a single point: IMF wants to get money. The current discussion in the regime of the Bolivarian Constitution is what agent of finance capital guarantees to impose the attack until the end so IMF gets every dollar of a broken Venezuela.
It is posed if Maduro supported by Capriles does it, if he calls early elections because Capriles may end up losing prestige for supporting Maduro in his attack, if an agreement and all together impose the attack and Maduro finishes showing his real face in front of the masses, if Lopez supported in the middle class passes the attack since Maduro lost all his social base, etc..
They are variants of Wall Street and imperialism. It’s a speed race to see who defeats and smash the Venezuelan proletariat on behalf of IMF.
“Socialism of the 21st century” means 105 billion dollars of foreign debt to IMF and the imperialist vultures. In 2014 Maduro must pay 15,500 million dollars. For that reason, they imposed 20% of chronic unemployment, 60% inflation, devaluation to sack the workers’ wages and make triple the super profits of importers, rate hikes, and wage freezes, shortages of food and basic supplies for the masses, collapse of 30% of the oil productivity, factories militarization, repression and prison for workers and poor peasants who fight. The exploited should make queues for hours trying to get toilet paper or soap, while the boli-bourgeoisie, transformed into an “importing country”, make fabulous business with dollar associated with large food chains and cereal companies. They are the “inflation”! With the government control, they get dollar at 6.6 bs. and sell goods at 75 to 80 bs.
This is the boli-bourgeoisie which took 270 billion dollars to Wall Street and Miami, while PDVSA is broken.
In the Bolivarian Venezuela, as in any colonial country, the most important fraction of the bourgeoisie is imperialism. Banks, industries, imports... are under its control. The officer caste of the Bolivarian National Armed Forces, main body of the bourgeois state, is the board of managing directors of imperialism in exchange for a share of the business.
The imperialist plunder on Venezuela has imposed on the masses the same conditions of misery and suffering that when Caracazo happened in 1989. The crash is here; Venezuela has hit underwater rocks of the global crisis. Maduro’s government must redouble its offensive against the masses by removing the fuel subsidy to ensure the payment of the debt to IMF and the super-profits of the transnational companies. That’s their role under the orders of Obama which uses him as a lemon that is squeezing all the juice.
For that reason, Maduro supported by Capriles, launched in 2013 and early 2014 a brutal attack on the working class and also against the ruined middle classes. With the proletariat under the thumb of Chavezism, thank to the treachery of their leadership, and the middle classes, ruined and desperate by devaluation, inflation and shortages, took to the streets calling for “security”, “freedom”, “new dollars”, looking for a reactionary way out to their bankruptcy.
With economic crash, the Maduro-Capriles Agreement
is in crisis
Leopoldo Lopez and the old Venezuelan oligarchy lead
the demonstration of the ruined middle class and pose as new political alternative to impose
the attack on the masses
The Bolivarian bourgeoisie celebrated the pro-imperialist resolutions of the summit of CELAC in Habana where everyone applauded the capitalist restoration in Cuba, which configures the toughest counterrevolutionary coup to the proletariat and the masses of the continent. While this happened, a huge political crisis was opened in Venezuela. Since February 12, dozens of demonstrations in the main cities - student rallies only at the beginning, and with the days bigger and bigger ones - are shaking the country, facing the police and armed gangs government, with dead, wounded and arrested.
In this situation Leopoldo Lopez led the demonstrations. This is the expression that the Maduro-Capriles agreement was in crisis and no longer restrains the middle class and in turn imperialism prepares new political alternatives, since it thinks Maduro has “little juice” and it fears that he may not be able to impose the attack taking away the fuel subsidy. If the bourgeoisie does not close quickly these “divisions at the top”, it may end up opening the door to an eruption of the working class as the Caracazo.
The political crisis is in full development. Maduro asked Capriles to fulfill the agreement, to be responsible for the situation and remove the middle classes from the streets. From day one Capriles showed his willingness to keep the agreement but he cannot control the demonstrations.
Now Maduro shows the “white flag” and called for a dialogue of “Peace” with the “right” wing that they call “coupist” while he offers more repression and misery to the working class. No wonder Maduro proposes a hug with “Lopez” to try to close the political crisis with a new agreement that may contain this new opposition force, if Chavez hugged Uribe in Unasur, based on the slaughter of Colombian resistance. He also hugged Obama who called to vote for him and hugged the worms of Miami and Castro for the capitalist restoration in Cuba.
But, so far, the “opposition” to Lopez does not accept the proposal and demands that Maduro finishes attacking the masses. In this way he shows that he is a new political force who controls the ruined middle classes. The fact, despite the reformism wants to hide it, is that there is no contradiction between the existence of the right of “Lopez” and the regime of the Bolivarian Constitution. It is Maduro’s attack on the workers’ movement and the masses that has allowed the strengthening of a more right-wing puppet opposition. All these agents of Obama and IMF have supported the attack on the working class and have left it bound and greatly divided.
The more and more Chavezism attacks the working class and masses, the more and more it loses weight in the streets and the more the old Venezuelan oligarchy stands up. The cycle of Chavist bourgeoisie, who dribbles part of business with imperialism came to an end. Chavezism cannot call the working class to the streets to confront the “right” wing. The left who demands this to Maduro only deceives the workers and people. Maduro gave the working class an Anti-Strike Law, repression in every fight, militarization and a wage freeze. We must tell the truth to the workers. Stop lying! Maduro calling the working class to fight against Lopez and the old oligarchy would mean his suicide and the entire ruling class. Their plan is to apply a new “high oil prices” to get the funds to pay the debt to imperialism. Their plan is to super-exploit, even more, the Venezuelan working class so it pays for the crisis.
The proof of this is the Right got the streets leading the despair of the ruined middle classes. The oligarchy knows that if Maduro fails, being supported by the Bolivarian armed forces, they, with the reactionary middle classes against the labor movement, are the ones who can carry out Maduro’s attack up to the end.
In Venezuela a crash broke out. It is on the brink of default. It can only get loans for falling into debts. It can only sell out more and more sectors of the oil industry to the transnational companies to invest. Its only perspective is to attack the people with new increases of the price of oil, as the ruling class did in Caracazo. The “Bolivarian revolution” proved to be a rodeo, expropriating the worker and peasant revolution in Venezuela and Latin America, to finish tying with double chains the nation to IMF and Wall Street.
In order to fight for wages and decent work, against the shortages, the high cost of living and against IMF: the Venezuelan working class, breaking with the boli-bourgeoisie and getting into the fight for their demands, is the only one who can save the nation, leading all the oppressed classes.
Before the catastrophe imposed by subjecting the nation to imperialism which comes for everything and makes play all their agents to get its goals, the working class must respond.
Only their demand for an increase of wages, according to the cost of living, and for ending up with the famine and shortages, question the whole plan of IMF and capitalist gangs who get richer at expense of people’s hunger. Therefore, the emergence of the working class for their immediate demands contains an open struggle against imperialism and its domination over Venezuela. Thus, the working class must break with PSUV and Chavez’s bourgeoisie. And in this way the fallacy and deception of Capriles and Lopez must be unmasked, disputing the leadership of the ruined middle classes.
The question nowadays in the political crisis is which class and what class alliance gives a solution to Venezuela, which is completely submitted to imperialism. That is, if the solution is given by an alliance of the Bolivarian bourgeoisie and its Armed Forces smashing definitely the labor movement and the rest of the exploited, guaranteeing an electoral transition to a new government in 2015. There might be other reactionary alliances, supported by the ruined middle classes under the imperialist leadership. Or if the working class, as the leader of the impoverished middle class and the exploited, gives a way out expropriating imperialism and the native bourgeoisie and demolishing the bourgeois state with the proletarian revolution.
The task at the moment is to re-found the UNT without bureaucrats to break with the bourgeoisie and impose the GENERAL STRIKE! The working class is the only one who can give a favorable outcome for the ruined middle classes and the poor peasants. The proletariat must break with their demands for jobs, bread, against inflation and devaluation, for the freedom of prisoners and in the fight to defeat Maduro’s attack, smash the reaction of Lopez, break with IMF and Wall Street, expropriating the boli-bourgeoisie, the oligarchy of Capriles and Lopez and imperialist bankers.
A big tension between the classes is in the streets of Venezuela. A political crisis has been opened; none of the classes and sections of classes can live together in peace. Under the blows of the crash, the political crisis has hit the streets and that is where it will be solved.
The left currents of the world are divided. Some of them, from the WSF proclaim absolute loyalty to Maduro and that the working class must starve, eat every two days and lose all their conquests in order to support the “Bolivarian” government which harshly attacks every day.
The announcement of the existence of a coup in Venezuela today as in 2002 is to announce a storm so that they could impose the “rain” of Maduro stealing the wages, cost of living and its brutal attack on the working class. All the armed forces, the true power of the Bolivarian regime, have already decided that Maduro is the one to attack the masses up to the end. Demobilize the working class today is also to create the conditions for sectors of the armed forces to dare again to give a military coup, in case Maduro fails. The fear of being defeated as in 2002 will dissipate when the working class and the masses are not involved in this political crisis.
Other currents of the left who claim that the “working class must intervene independently”. How?, we ask... Would they make a new party? Would they go to election as FIT in Argentina and would they promise to solve such a catastrophe with laws? ... The crisis is here; the crash is here. If the proletariat does not burst in independently with their struggle demands with the method of the General Strike, no one can dispute the streets to Lopez and divide the ruined middle classes. For it, the working class must defeat the attack of Maduro who is the one leading the war of IMF and Wall Street against the working class and the oppressed nation.
Ultimately, the emergence of Lopez and the attack of Maduro are two ends of the same rope to strangle the proletariat and prevent it from leading the middle classes with a new Caracazo to defeat the attack which is already here and will deepen with the imposition of oil and high price of oil.
The Maduro-Capriles Agreement, a two-party regime of the Bolivarian Constitution that forced a brutal attack on the people in 2013 and beginning of 2014
Contrary to all the deception of the WSF, which exposed that the great enemy of the exploited were Capriles and MUD, the economic and social crisis showed that during 2013 there was a huge deal in the whole bourgeoisie, guaranteed by the Bolivarian National Armed Forces: the working class and the exploited must pay the ruin of the nation caused by imperialist plunder. The basis of this was the agreement of Chavez-Capriles who under the command of Obama, whom both called to vote, refloated a kind of two-party system -based on the Bolivarian Constitution- with a strong “opposition” to the masses. Chavez’s death had occurred at a time when important sectors of the proletariat began to break up with him, and the bourgeoisie used his death to close the political crisis. In this way, the Maduro-Capriles agreement was able to continue the plan of attack and it did.
Capriles, far from organizing a “coup”, as the whole world left affirms, pledged allegiance to the Bolivarian Constitution and was a key supporter of Maduro administration, because the latter controls the national unions, and is the only one who could make the exploited pay the bankruptcy of the nation. For imperialism, Maduro was a “lemon” with a lot of juice to squeeze.
This is what was clear in 2013. In the middle of a terrible crash that sank the nation, the government of the “Socialism of 21st Century” made the exploited ones live a true hell. Inflation reached almost 60%, while the wages have been frozen for 4 years. There was a deepening of the shortages of food, toilet paper, rice, bread, etc. and of the speculation of the big commercial bourgeoisie. In Venezuela the exploited and the middle classes spend at least 3 or 4 hours per day going over supermarkets and warehouses for food. The Bolivar (Venezuelan currency) is worth less and less. The actual unemployment is increasing. In factories there are blackmail and suspension of workers by the bosses, as in happening in the assembly line factories, where about 100 thousand workers’ jobs are threatened.
October-November 2013: despite the treasons of the leadership, Venezuela’s working
class fought back
The wave of workers’ struggles in October-November last year, whose highest peak was the heroic strike of SIDOR, was the chance for the proletariat to definitely break with Chavezism and arise as an independent class, with a program for the crisis to be paid by the imperialism and the Venezuelan bourgeoisie, the ones that really provoked it. This was the path to break the middle classes, earn their most oppressed stripes and weld the workers and popular alliance.
Against this, the regime moved all its pieces. The bureaucracy of the national trade unions –with the collaboration of all the renegades of Trotskyism as Chirino in the UNT- submitted the proletariat to the decisions of the Chavist Labour Ministry and the ones who weren’t immediately disciplined were harshly repressed by Maduro and the FANB, with the complete agreement of the bourgeois opposition of Capriles, Lopez and Machado.
In the Civetchi Factory, 8 comrades were condemned to five years of prison because they wanted to organize their trade union. The strike of Mitsubishi ended up with the militarization of the factory. Ten of the oil workers’ leaders had the anti-strike law applied onto them for demanding the signature of the collective agreement and the wage updates. Today they are accused of terrorism and conspiracy.
The bourgeois charlatans that today tear their heart out speaking of “democracy”, as Lopez –who supported the 2002 coup d’état and Chavez guaranteed his impunity- and Machado, hid and supported this attack against the working class. They want democracy to take the power and have the oil yield! For the exploited, an armored regime!
The reformist leaderships of the working class stopped an independent and centralized fight and allowed the regime to strengthen and unleash the economical crisis over the masses. Today the division and dispersion of the workers ranks take prevalence, submitted to one or another bourgeois fraction. That is the way the bourgeoisie could unleash a true economical and social catastrophe over the exploited classes.
With the proletariat under the Bolivarian boot, the most ruined strips of the workers living by gifts and charities from the state, and with a bonapartist armor of the regime dedicating a millionaire budget to the Bolivarian repressive forces, Maduro have I mind to grab the last “box” to pay the IMF: the subsidy to the oil, that would mean a new round of attacks, with more devaluation and unbearable inflation and a doubled looting.
In the commemoration of the Chavez death anniversary, the government is deploying before the masses all the might of the Venezuelan Armed Forces that are not to attack the imperialism but to intimidate the working class for it to accept the adjustment that is ongoing and for the bourgeois fractions to discipline to attack all together the masses movements and be able to deliver what the IMF needs to carry from the pillaging of Venezuela.
As we stated before, it is clear that there is no remnant of the bourgeois nationalism features that the Chavezism had in his times to expropriate the revolution, where it used the working class demonstrations to haggle with the imperialism a part of the businesses. Maduro is already a direct agent of the transnational companies with the ones he must sign new and lucrative oil agreements to end delivering completely the nation.
The Chavist government couldn’t mobilize the proletariat to solve the crisis because it would irrupt with the General Strike for the bread and wage against the imperialism and the bankers. It would even endanger decisively the business of the boli-bourgeoisie itself and even more of the MUD and FANB.
The government of Maduro has become a government of “popular front under party forms”, with the UNT completely nationalized as an appendix of the PSUV but without any support of the workers masses.
Lopez knows that Maduro cannot mobilize the masses and that he can only rely on the military. And that is why López strengthens himself in the streets and calls not to abandon them. And from there he even disputes a section of the working class that has already broken and hates the government of inflation, the high cost of life and hunger.
The decadence of Venezuela and the situation of barbarism that has been imposed on the proletariat and the people are the price that the nation must pay to maintain the fabulous profits of the transnationals and the IMF, of the millionaire Boli-bourgeoisie, their generals and the oligarchy of Capriles and López. 400,000 bourgeois parasites, minority partners of the great imperialist capital, plunge into misery 28 million workers, peasants, small merchants and students!
Whoever wants to know where the oil rent and the Federal Reserve of all these years of “boom” are, look in the accounts of Wall Street, of the shareholders of Citibank, of HSBC, the Royal Bank of Scotland, of Cargill, from the Mitsubishi, Toyota, Ford, Chevrolet! Let them see the Bolivarian officers and the leaders of “Socialism of the 21st century” as Rafael Ramírez, the president of PdVSA and super-minister of Maduro, one of the richest men in Venezuela! They are the real culprits of the ruin of the nation!
Where is Venezuela going?
The situation in Venezuela is marked by the imperialist world crisis that erupted in 2008. Wall Street parasites devoured $ 90 billion that human labor had not produced, and made the world pay that crisis so that it pays their parasitism and bad business. In the face of the revolutionary response of the exploited of the world, with its vanguard in North Africa and the Middle East -which reverberated throughout Europe and in the USA itself with the “Occupy Wall Street” movement, imperialism regrouped all the reformist leaderships of the world proletariat to prevent the synchronization of the proletarian revolution and to surround the working class country by country in order to sustain a rotten system. The consummation of this task was expressed at the WSF meeting in Tunisia in 2013, which was attended by all to pay tribute to Chavez, support Obama and support the genocide of Al Assad on behalf of imperialism in Syria.
Today, Wall Street, Obama and the IMF, having brought the revolution out of the scene, have launched their counter-offensive and are making their imperialist competitors pay the world crisis, and fundamentally to the oppressed nations and peoples of the world. The IMF’s offensive in Venezuela to collect its US $ 105 billion is the expression of this world situation. That is why Venezuela has no way out: either it becomes a complete colony of the IMF thanks to the farce of the “Bolivarian revolution”, or the proletariat leads the exploited to defeat imperialism with the socialist revolution.
A new round of the global economic crisis is in progress. The tendency to the fall of the production in China and the search of the imperialist powers of new sources of cheap and slave labor, pushes to new processes of relocation of the transnationals. Yankee imperialism made the world pay for its crisis and through the IMF it has given credits in worthless bonds of its superbanks and of the super bubbles that they build for the world market. Now they want to collect what they lend, as it happens in all of Eastern Europe. There we are the Ukraine, convulsed with an external debt of more than US $ 70 billion with the IMF, which, like that of Venezuela, must pay this year.
If the US as the great usurer of the world and debtor at the same time, -together with Germany-, does not let the minor imperialist powers rest, such as Spain, Greece, Portugal, Italy, etc., which were in crisis because of the crash of 2008, will be a thousand times more implacable with semicolonial countries to charge usury. The political convulsions of Venezuela and Ukraine today express enormous tremors, whose epicenter is imperialism, making the world pay for the new blows of its crisis.
Maduro’s plan is to reach the 2015 elections having unloaded all the attack on the masses. If Maduro finally “has no more juice” left and the pact with Capriles could not resolve the political crisis, it cannot be ruled out that the “Bolivarian” Armed Forces, which are full of massacres of the Caracazo, coup plotters of 2002, assassins of the working class, take out a “pronouncement” and impose a transitional government of Cabello (President of the National Assembly and principal man of the officers of the Armed Forces) “until new elections”. Nor can we rule out that the officers, on behalf of imperialism, ends up taking Lopez out of jail if necessary and putting him in charge of the nation. The Armed Forces are “Bolivarian” as long as this scam serves them to keep their business. We insist, all these variants are at the service of Obama, the IMF and Wall Street.
The more Maduro advances in his plan of pro-imperialist attack, the more the social crisis deepens and the proletariat remains subject to the collaboration of classes with the government, the stronger the preparation of new reactionary variants of financial capital, which tomorrow they can be used by imperialism to give real coups, if it considers it necessary. It is the policy of popular front and class collaboration that prepares the way for the counterrevolution and new Bonapartist blows.
It is necessary to refound the UNT without collaborating union bureaucrats to break with the Bolivarian bourgeoisie. The old oligarchy of Lopez and Capriles stands up because Maduro, under the orders of the IMF, has subjected and brutally attacked the working class. To restore the workers’ and popular alliance, the working class must go out to fight for its demands, which are those of the entire exploited people and the oppressed nation.
Liga Comunista de Trabajadores
(Workers’ Communist League)
CHAVEZ AND THE IMPOSTURE
OF THE BOLIVARIAN REVOLUTION
The expropriation of the anti-imperialist struggle of the masses
March 20th, 2013
Again on the question of Marxism and the native bourgeoisies
The passing away of Chavez has been followed and lamented by the entire bourgeois and imperialist press at an international level. The reason is the death of one of their key men who came to contain the huge revolutionary processes in Latin America that confronted imperialism in the first 10 years of the 21st century.
Early in 2000 up to 2005, the revolutionary processes in Ecuador, Bolivia, Argentina, Venezuela (in the latter it started in the ‘90s) put into question the imperialist domination in the region. The exploited aimed to fight for the throwing down of the bourgeois governments and regimes.
It was the World Social Forum (WSF) constituted late in the ‘90s in São Paulo (Brazil), which centralized the forces of the remains of Stalinism, Social Democracy and the Castroites, first in Latin America, then in Europe and the US, and now expanding all over the world. The legitimacy given to it by the renegades of Trotskyism played a decisive role for this centrality to be settled of the reformist and treacherous leaderships of the world proletariat to support the bourgeoisie, control and deviate the revolutionary processes, and, as we see now, shield the capitalist system in bankruptcy against the hatred of the masses and the revolutionary processes.
Chavez was one of the most outstanding leaderships of the WSF. In short, his last favor was the support to Obama for the last US elections. Together with Castro, he announced publicly that Obama was his candidate in USA. In that way he called the left wing of the US proletariat to vote Obama, in a moment that this proletariat was already breaking with him.
The fact was that wide sections of the immigrant workers and the Latin and Black proletarians were reluctant to do so. Both Chavez and Castro -as we will see later- have been the best electors of Obamas’.
This was one of their most outstanding “anti-imperialist deeds” and which exposed them; a true swindle to the anti-imperialist fight of the Latin American masses.
Chavez has contributed, together with all the governments expropriating revolutions, to reconstitute the institutions of domination of imperialism in the Americas, as a legacy of the past, as the OAS or the Inter American Treaty of Reciprocal Defense (TIAR) which had blown up in the beginning of the revolutionary processes in Latin America in the late ‘90s.
UNASUR, CELAC, the regional common markets (as Mercosur, ALBA, etc.) are economic and political institutions that centralize the actions of imperialism and the native bourgeoisie of the Latin American subcontinent. Bush’s FTA of yesterday, has appeared today under other names and tragically for the masses, the native bourgeoisies have guaranteed it, with them as junior partners in the sacking and giving in to imperialism of the oppressed nations of Latin America.
It is necessary to tear up the veil covering such a big deception and lies to the masses. In Venezuela more than 2,000 starving working class people were massacred in the state repression to “El Caracazo”, a mass uprising against the IMF. Up to now, the Venezuelan governments, Chavez’s ones included, have not done but paying, keeping and even increasing the external debt undertaken with the imperialist Banks and the MNCs.
Those are the facts. No words can dissimulate that the bourgeois pseudo nationalism has empty hands for the masses, while it has expropriated the proletarian revolution.
The revisionist currents have again thrown tons of poison over the world working class, depicting Chavez as a “father” of the exploited, one that died sponsoring their anti-imperialist struggle; the truth is that he was a cadre of the bourgeoisie and imperialism at a world level, and they have had a significant loss with the passing away of their agent.
This bourgeois regime that gives lip service to nationalism keeps already a debt of 26 billion dollars with the MNCs and the native bourgeois it says it has “expropriated”, as it has compensated them with payments of twice or thrice their real value. Chavez leaves a heavy mortgage on Venezuelan oil and aluminum that he put as collaterals for 40 billion dollars in debt with the MNCs and China.
How is it that “Chavez was anti-imperialist”? Thanks to him the bankers in Wall Street have fattened their super profits with the Venezuelan oil rent, shared with the “Bolibourgeoisie”. Numbers don’t lie. The imperialist Banks earned in Venezuela, in 2010 a 60% more than they had earned in 2009. In 2011 their profits were increased in a 70% with respect to the year before, and in 2012 the increase amounted a 98% more.
There are the profits of imperialism and its junior partners, the Boli-bourgeoisie, which are robbing and profiteering the oil rent belonging to the nation, and doing common businesses in Miami. Obama is the chief of their business… that’s why it was necessary for them to have the people in US voting him.
Those numbers emerge in the same moment that the fees and fares’ increases appear, together with a devaluation of the Bolivar (Venezuelan currency) of 40% in a single stroke, an unbearable shortage of basic staples, which have turned besides too expensive, and millions of unemployed sinking in misery, living on the dole that is less than a charity, not covering the minimum necessities of a family.
The gains of the masses… the “Miracle” plans, the plans for teaching to read and write, etc., were not gifts from the government but minimal gains achieved by the masses as a byproduct of big and harsh revolutionary combats; these gains, however, do not solve the hunger or the misery of millions of exploited. Even to get those alms, the Venezuelan working class had to render thousands of its dead on the streets in order to defeat the different governments and regimes of the bourgeoisie in that semi-colony bled white by imperialism, namely Venezuela.
Precisely because the working class could not seize the power, the masses see their misery increasing with the first signals of the world crisis and the deepening of the imperialist pilfering.
Chavez was seen off in a deep pain by most of the Venezuelan people… and that is the paradox, because just at the same time the fees and fares’ increases, the devaluation of the currency, the loss of the value of the wages and the shortages and price increases are worsening day after day.
Chavezism, with and without Chavez are preparing to repeat what they have done already: launching over the people such hard and implacable attacks, under the orders of the IMF, as those applied by Andres Perez and Caldera in the ‘90s.
Layers of the working class and the popular sectors were already completing their experience with the government; the latter began to be exposed as far from being a “friend” of the workers and the ordinary people: it had frozen through its Ministry of Labor the collective bargains for 3 or 4 years, sent thugs to attack violently the striking or protesting workers, or either directly the Bolivarian police repressed them savagely, as was the case with the metalworkers at SIDOR.
This experience with the government of Chavez that the working class had begun to live through has had a provisory interruption by Chavez’s decease.
The Chavist bourgeoisie clutched to an endless funeral for Chavez, naming his second as president in charge, closed ranks with the Armed Forces –which were given the custody of the memorial services- and together with Capriles’ “opposition” bourgeoisie is preparing elections for 30 days ahead.
Venezuelan exploiters, with a sure class instinct fear those who cry for the passing away of Chavez… the workers and ordinary people whom they manipulate.
They know that the present calm and despair are a false illusion. The capitalist class and imperialism distinguish with full clarity and are afraid of (amidst the feelings for Chavez’s decease and the political crisis it created for the exploiters) the workers and oppressed people that performed the heroic uprisings, as El Caracazo, and defeated in street combats the military coup de état in 2002, putting in jeopardy the unity of the Army.
Those “at the Top” close ranks. They prompt their institutions. They know that the economic crisis, the robbing by the bankers and imperialism, the pilfering of the “Boli-bourgeoisie” and all the capitalists in Venezuela, poses to them the necessity of attacking the masses, in the way of the infamous regime of Punto Fijo in the ‘90s.
The deceived masses cry for the death of Chavez, and the ruling classes, pompously guised as “Chavists” and “Bolivarians” seek to refurbish their institutions to be able to attack those masses violently.
This truth must be told to the Venezuelan, Latin American and World working classes. It is urgent to prepare and organize to counter the looming attack of the capitalists and the government of the “Bolivarian Revolution”, which is a true imposture, a caricature of revolution.
The spoils of Stalinism, the Castroites and the renegades to Trotskyism dress Chavez up with legitimacy and authority to pose as anti-imperialist and deceive the masses
A theoretical, programmatic and organizing struggle is now more than ever necessary against opportunism and revisionism. They poison the conscience of the workers, presenting them their enemies as friends. They support the den of bandits of the WSF. They tell the exploited that the murderers and slaveholders of the Chinese Communist Party –who went to Venezuela to cry for Chavez decease alongside Maduro- are the workers’ allies, though actually they are the enslavers of the Chinese workers for the sake of the MNCs.
Chavezism is a bourgeois nationalist phenomenon, every day less and less nationalist, and empty-handed, which in order to haggle with imperialism over its share in the businesses, as a junior partner, is obliged to threaten with the “proletarian menace”. However, to utilize the proletariat, it must control it with an iron hand, by statizing all the workers’ organizations.
Thus act the bourgeois nationalist governments in the semi-colonial countries. The bourgeoisie has already understood, since the worker revolution of 1848 in France that it can never have the proletariat as an independently mobilizing ally. The bourgeoisie understood that yesterday when fighting against autocracy, and knows that it is still so, in its haggling over with imperialism.
This is so because in the oppressed nations the two fundamental classes of the society that clash and act in the productive process are the working class and imperialism, the latter controlling the core of finances and the branches of industry. The national bourgeoisies are basically weak as a sector of the ruling classes.
The native bourgeoisie fears the proletariat and its independent actions, because if the proletariat advances toward the socialist revolution it will attack not only the interests of imperialism but also those of the own native bourgeoisie, which is associated and interconnected in thousands of businesses to the international imperialism.
The bourgeois nationalist phenomena don’t last for long. They are ephemeral. Either the proletarian revolution succeeds, or the native bourgeoisie together with imperialism will end strangling the proletariat. The reason is that the true mortal enemy of the bourgeoisie is the proletariat, not imperialism.
This “nationalist” phenomenon we saw in the past with Peron in Argentina, Nasser in Egypt, etc., during and in the aftermath of WWII. The native bourgeoisies take advantage of the momentous crises of imperialism in its domination of the planet, or they act as hijackers of the socialist revolution in their countries in order to better negotiate their slice of super profits snatched away from the working class.
We also saw this process with Qaddafi and the Al Assads in Middle East, who ended being the most important agents of imperialism in Libya and Syria. Similarly, Chavezism is walking quickly the same way in Venezuela, after getting rid of the proletarian revolution in that country, but also in Latin America, where the revolutionary processes in Ecuador, Bolivia, Argentina, Chile, were deviated and strangles by the treacherous leaderships of the proletariat. Small surprise if those who yesterday cried endlessly for the death of Qaddafi are today among who cry the passing away of Chavez.
If Chavez were a socialist, so other bourgeois nationalist phenomena as Peron, Cardenas (Mexico) or Nasser were almost revolutionary socialists. It would be a true delirium. They expropriated (as every bourgeois “expropriation” they compensated the “expropriated” members of their same class) oil, the Suez Channel, the railways, etc. It was simply the case of native bourgeoisies that were disputing their share of the businesses. Though, as soon as the re distribution of the spheres of influence was arranged among the imperialist powers in the aftermath of the 2WW, all the national bourgeoisies ended by disciplining themselves to their new or old master, this time to the US.
And when these bourgeoisies had the least intent of a lukewarm resistance, out with them! Thus was the coup against Peron in Argentina in 1955. He fled quickly in a patrol boat along the River Plate to Paraguay. Peron left the massed unarmed protesting in the May Square so that they were massacred by the Armed Forces that performed the coup de etat.
He knew that had he armed the masses, they would not only advance over the imperialist propriety, but also over the native bourgeois -nationalist or not- one. That’s why others, as Allende in Chile, choose to shoot themselves rather to arm the masses when the coup comes… There the coup was headed by Pinochet, who was Allende’s Defense Minister, put there as a “nationalist and patriotic general” by the own Allende, the Chilean Communist Party and Fidel Castro that praised publicly the merits of the “peaceful way to socialism”.
If we compare the charlatanism and demagoguery of Chavez with the nationalist government of Allende, who went as far as to nationalize copper, Chavez and his leftist parrots would be the bourgeois nationalist government more to the right, empty-handed and belated in the entire History of Latin America.
Saying that Chavez is a “good bourgeois”, “he who gave concessions to the masses gratuitously” amounts to saying that Peron gave in mid-‘40s the single and united CGT (Central Union) to the Argentinean workers as well as the “Aguinaldo” (a 13th salary in the year), the paid holidays, sick-leaves and birth-leaves, the collective bargains for the unions, etc.! And whoever said that would be acting as a miserable agent of the bourgeoisie, because each one of those gains were conquered by the Argentinean working class with their indefatigable struggles in 15 years during the ‘340s when they conquered the unions by industry. Peron had to concede those gains if he wanted (as he did) prevent the advance of the struggle for the socialist revolution.
And if Peron in the past and Chavez today have been obliged to concede the least gains to the masses it was always as a product of these masses heroic combats. The bourgeois nationalist governments have always conceded the gains on the condition that they appear as a free gift granted by the bourgeoisie. And this they could not do without the help of the embellishment of the bosses as good people and friends of the workers and people inoculated as a poison within a candy for the conscience of the masses by the treacherous leaderships of the proletariat.
We affirm that those thousand hundreds of exploited, today crying in despair for the passing away of Chavez, a bourgeois leader, were not carried to that situation either for Chavez’s charisma or because he was a friend of the people. They were carried to that situation and submitted to a policy of class collaboration with the bourgeoisie by the counterrevolutionary reformist worker organizations and leaderships, as for instance the Castros and their agents (who dressed Chavez in red, using the prestige of the Cuban Revolution), the spoils of the Communist Parties everywhere and the renegades to Trotskyism, which legitimized Chavez from the WSF and directly in the same Venezuelan Government.
The strength of Chavezism did not come down from the sky or from the televised “Alo Presidente”. Neither were Nasser’s created by his oratory nor Peron’s by Evita and the lumpen base of the Peronist movement.
Chavez was Chavez because the Castroites, Stalinism and the renegades to Trotskyism presented him and imposed him to the masses as their great friend and ally. This is the truth.
The renegades to Trotskyism “resurrected Lazarus”, that is, Stalinism, the same that gave in the worker states in 1989 and together with the Castroites –highest example of Stalinism today- put Chavez in his post. In the same way they legitimized the Kirchners in Argentina, or Morales’ government in Bolivia (with his friend the vice-president Linera representative of French oil corporation Total) to care for the imperialist interests all across Latin America.
The courage of all these “anti-imperialist democrats” and this cowardly left showed in 2009 in the coup at Honduras that threw down the belated Bolivarian intent of “brave” wealthy rancher Zelaya who ended in Costa Rica in underwear at 4 a.m. It also showed when Chavez embraced murderous former Colombian president Uribe while the spilt blood of the fighters of the Colombian resistance was still warm over the Ecuadorian soil. “Business is business”, Chavez, Lula, Nestor Kirchner, etc., said then. The oil barrel at 120 dollars each allowed everybody to have his share in the feast.
Thus, all of them ended making a “great FTA” of Latin America, this time with new masks, i.e., OAS and FTAs with new guises, namely the UNASUR, the CELAC, with Cuba within ALBA, with the restoration of capitalism open in the island now offered as gift and subjects’ offering to Don Obama, with the permit to enter and get away freely for goods and persons in Cuba, so that the “gusanos” in Miami can come to recoup their lost businesses together with the Castro Bross in Havana.
We Trotskyists share the feeling and the suffering of the exploited, but we say: it is not ours. We neither sit up with the relatives of the defunct nor accompany the leaders of the bourgeoisie, dead or alive. We say the truth to the masses, even if it is hard and cruel.
We Trotskyists sit up with the lifeless bodies of our dead: the massacred ones in El Caracazo, the workers and poor peasants repressed and murdered by the counterrevolutionary forces of Chavezism. We do regret that Chavez is not alive, as the Venezuelan and world working class were already beginning to live through their experience with that bourgeois leader who had started to attack the working class and was to deepen that attack, surely equal or even worse than that his followers are preparing, even worse than the plans that Carlos Andres Perez and Rafael Caldera applied in the ‘90s under the guidance of the IMF.
Wide sectors of the working class were starting to fight for their most elemental demands and were already clashing openly with the Chavist government and the Bolivarian regime. This process is still open. It is decisive to raise with clarity from the view of Marxism and the interests of the working class a position facing this conjuncture of the situation in Venezuela, in order to re-arm with the strategy of the (true) socialist revolution the proletariat in the Americas for the major combats that are in course and those in the works.
We revolutionary socialists have always been in the trenches of the class war that is opposite to that of Chavez’s and his lackeys. We fought alongside the heroic Libyan militias against Qaddafi, and today we fight in Syria against the assassin Bashar al Assad, both of whom ended, after a short period of anti-imperialist verbosity, the greatest agents of imperialism in the Maghreb and Middle East.
That’s why our condolences go to the martyrs and heroes of the Libyan revolution, with the massacred masses in Syria.
We are with the workers and exploited in Iran, who at every attempt to fight for their bread, against the shortages and expensiveness of living and the unemployment imposed by the ayatollahs, servants of German imperialism, have only received the most ferocious repression from the counterrevolutionary shock guards of Ahmadinejad (a Chavez’s friend) and the Iranian state, counterrevolutionary guards that are also attacking the heroic resistance in Iraq. How is it that Ahmadinejad is confronting imperialism? A pure parody! With their counterrevolutionary forces and parties in Iraq, Both the Ayatollahs and Ahmadinejad have in that country a true shock group against the masses, which has allowed the US to retire its troops orderly. That’s why Obama supported Chavez.
The Ayatollahs, together with their friends and associates of the Hezbollah in Lebanon, today from the government of that country manage all the telecom, construction, etc., businesses together with the imperialist powers. We do not applaud the murderous Ayatollahs or the Iranian government. We combat against and claim to be continuers of the heroic Iranian revolution that in the ‘80s imposed the shoras, i.e., the worker and rank and file soldier councils, which actually threw down Reza Palhevi Sha, leaving their thousand dead in their combat, and were afterwards massacred, by Rullollah Khomeini and his counterrevolutionary hordes.
That’s why we, revolutionary socialists do not applaud or support Morales, that worker-and-peasant-beating, repressor and murderer, in Bolivia. Much less that servant of imperialism and the MNCs, Cristina Kirchner in Argentina that today has in jail or prosecuted more than 6500 worker and popular fighters, including some that today cry the passing away of Chavez.
We Trotskyists declare openly to be enemies –and are in the opposite barricade- of Obama, the “Bolivarian” governments, the Piñera and Humala of the FTA; we confront that parody, the so called “Bolivarian Revolution”, because we fight and go on combating for the victory of the international socialist revolution… We are opposite to all of them above mentioned, who together with the Castro Bross have taken an oath: “Nevermore a new Cuba in the Americas!!!”; we combat for expelling that treacherous Cuban new bourgeoisie emerged from the bureaucracy that has given in the island, we are against the capitalist restoration in Cuba, and for the success of the socialist revolution in Latin America and USA; because there, in the hands of the today super exploited US working class, the victory will be consolidated of all the exploited in the Americas.
The miserable role of the renegades to Trotskyism: hanging from the coattails of the bourgeoisie while raising the banners of Stalinism –the pseudo-theory of two-stage revolution and the support to the “progressive” bourgeoisie
The Venezuelan question has been up to today –and continues being- a true litmus test separating reformists from revolutionaries, that is, the WSF supported by all the spoils of Stalinism, legitimized by the renegades to Trotskyism on one hand, from the militants of the Fourth International on the other.
Whereas the declarations of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) of England, of the New Anti-capitalist Parties (NPA) in France and across Europe and those of the entire Latin American Left, we affirm that there is a common thread that runs across all of them. Everyone speaks of an alleged “dual character” of Chavezism. This is a clear policy of support to “the progressive bourgeois”, which is a legacy and continuation of Stalinism and its pseudo-theory of the existence of “progressive camps”. The communist Parties, for the sake of the “peaceful co-existence of the USSR with imperialism”, supported the “democratic” bourgeois camp against the “fascist” one; the “nationalist” bourgeois against “imperialism”. Thus they liquidated every class struggle against the exploiters and ended submitting the proletariat to the bourgeoisie and imperialism at a world level.
The renegades to Trotskyism repeat today, as parrots, this old formula that carried the world proletariat to huge defeats, even catastrophes. For the former, Chavezism is on one hand “progressive”, “revolutionary and socialist” to the extent that it “took the masses out of poverty” and “adopted anti-imperialist measures”. And on the other hand, they affirm that Chavez did not go up to the end in his fight for socialism, a question that is still pending; they think that the Chavezism, supported by the masses, or pushed ahead by them, is capable of achieving it.
These people supported the bourgeoisies grouped in the UNASUR, the ALBA, the MERCOSUR; accompanied their meeting with a parallel “summit of the peoples”; and now all of them ended supporting these regional markets directed by the orders of the imperialist powers in the planet, which use them for carrying on juicy businesses with the Latin American bourgeoisies, while attacking violently the masses.
These are Menshevik positions, not only of supporting the “progressive bourgeois camps”; they are also continuity to Stalinism and its pseudo-theories as the two-stage revolution. For this pseudo-theory the native bourgeoisie can be an allied to the proletariat in the anti-imperialist struggle in a first stage, and the fight for socialism will come in a second stage. In the first stage the democratic-revolutionary tasks of the agrarian reform and the rupture with imperialism would be resolved. For the renegades to Trotskyism, Chavez would have been – and his movement continues being today- a fundamental ally in this political struggle against imperialism. Their program and policies were a resolute support to Chavez in his “socialist” and “anti-imperialist” “first stage”. All of them called the masses to vote and support him time and again.
The renegades to Trotskyism are a new batch of Mensheviks and continuity of Stalinism, both theoretically and programmatically. In Latin America, The Communist Parties during decades buried revolutions (as in the entire semi-colonial world) looking for “patriotic military” and “progressive bourgeois” in order to assemble a common anti-imperialist struggle and accomplish with them both a “democratic revolution” in a first stage, by defeating imperialism. This is a true fallacy, already paid with huge defeats by the world proletariat.
In this debate the origin is concentrated of revolutionary Marxism in the imperialist epoch; starting with the Chinese revolution, it generalized the Theory-program of Permanent Revolution to the whole planet; it poses that only the proletariat allied with the poor peasants, and seizing the power, can resolve the democratic revolutionary tasks in the semi-colonial and colonial countries (i.e., break with imperialism and carry on the agrarian reform), and for that it will have to combine those tasks with the socialist ones.
In the Chinese Revolution of 1927, Stalinism took Chiang Kai-shek (Chinese Chavez) even to the congresses of the 3rd International, and the Stalinism itself was part of the Kuomintang (the Chinese bourgeois nationalist party). The tragedy is that the Communist workers of the Chinese CP turned in 1927 into a million corpses used as fuel in the engines of the railways, under the order of the “progressive bourgeois” Chiang Kai-shek.
Stalinism of the ‘27 in China, openly breaking with Marxism and Bolshevism, was the predecessor and which wrote the libretto that the entire global reformist left repeats today. The Renegades to Trotskyism, become in followers of Stalinism, as left wing of the World Social Forum, are also mourning the death of Chavez.
In the attitude toward Chavezism, there is a divide between the theory-program of the Permanent Revolution and the pseudo-theory of the revolution by stages. The latter includes a political front with Chavez, where the working class and its left wing must “press on left, to then surpass him”, supporting his progressive measures and criticizing the negative ones.
We affirm that, as Trotsky said, anyone who gives the slightest political support to a bourgeois government, albeit the smallest nail on the little finger of his hand, reneges combating by its revolutionary overthrow. The Marxist apothegm in the fight against imperialism in a semi-colonial country is: we hit together, as in a military attack of imperialism we make unit of military action (e.g. Malvinas or Iraq) either with God or with the devil, but never give the slightest political support or wake up the slightest of illusions in the “goodness” of bourgeois nationalist government; because this means to be responsible for the whole of this Government, which is coming not to lead the victory of the anti-imperialist struggle, but to make her have an abortion.
We affirm that only the working class, allied to poor farmers, leading the exploited of the oppressed nation, can entirely solve the democratic-revolutionary tasks of the oppressed countries.
The guiding principle before Chavezism from the motley crew of the renegades to Marxism is to lead the working class to a policy of class collaboration; to close for the workers and poor the road to socialist revolution. Moreover, the Castro brothers, under the orders of imperialism, used Chavezism and its “Bolivarian revolution” to submit the proletariat to the bourgeoisie, with its slogan “it is no longer possible a Cuba in Latin America, as already socialism is not even possible in Cuba”. That was the battle cry of the Castroites and Stalinism, where the Castro brothers put all the political clout of the Cuban revolution to ensure that Venezuela would not be a new Cuba. Thus they already did yesterday in Nicaragua, Bolivia, Argentina, etc. That was the role of the Bolivarian revolution, aborting the road to socialist revolution throughout the Americas.
Celia Hart spoke of “Castro and Chavez”, “Cuba and Venezuela”, as “twin stars”, repeating, to falsify it, a metaphor of Trotsky’s in relation to fascism and Stalinism in the 1930s. Castro and Chavez were not Socialist twin stars, but, in plain language, it was the Castroites becoming in a “Bolibourgeoisie”. But for this he had to ensure the strangulation of the proletarian revolution in Latin America.
Hu Jintao gave them the program: “market socialism”, i.e., the submission of the working class to the market, as the Castro brothers do today when restoring capitalism in Cuba. There is already an open economic crisis in Venezuela. There, inflation, recession, devaluation, the “IMF-recommended packet” against the Venezuelan workers, which today is applied as yesterday was by Rafael Caldera or Carlos Andrés Perez in the Fourth Republic –those plagues are the order of the day. There are 500,000 workers laid off by the Castro brothers in Cuba, the opening of foreign trade and the return of Miami “gusanos” to do big business with the Cuban “Bolivarian bourgeoisie”. That is the ALBA and the UNASUR celebrated by all the lefts.
Alan Woods gave Chavez the Transitional Program to cover him well red. The LIT yesterday said we had to demand and pressure Chavez for him to go to socialism, although the former now says that stage of putting pressure on Chavez is already finished. So do the English SWP or the NPA today. The PTS of Argentina receives awards in Havana for its documentaries about the struggle of the working class in the ‘ 70s. It has red painted the dirty clothes to the Castro brothers.
Their policies are venom against the consciousness of the workers. You would have to tell all the Renegades to Trotskyism and Marxism why they don’t go to see a bourgeois and press him so that he opens the wallet and gives them his money. They are kidding!... You do not press the bourgeoisie, you have to expropriate it. But, to get the slightest of the demands of the working class, it means harsh, violent and heroic class fighting!
The real anti-imperialist fighters in Venezuela are the exploited who set an insurrection in El Caracazo against the IMF and who in ‘96/’97 recovered the trade unions and worker organizations for fighting
Considering that Chavez was who led the anti-imperialist struggle of the Venezuelan masses, that he was the direct expression of these struggles though he did not carry them to the end, and that for him to do that you needed the pressure of the Socialists and the masses, is a betrayal to the proletariat. It amounts to beautify the Venezuelan national bourgeoisie that fears the masses and their combat much more than it hates imperialism, of which it is a partner and which ends always negotiating and reaching an agreement with imperialism against the masses.
It is to disguise the murderers of the workers. It is telling the proletariat that there are “good” bourgeois who came to make concessions to humble people that cannot get them for themselves. It is to paint the world upside down. It is poisoning the consciousness of the masses. Again, this is to be a vile traitor.
This position has nothing to do with life, with Chavezism, or fundamentally with Marxism. Chavezism and bourgeois nationalism mean the expropriation of the struggle of the proletariat and the exploited in the oppressed nations of the Americas against imperialism; it is the negation of the perspective of their triumph.
Let’s talk about clearly. Those who confronted imperialism; defeated the Fourth Republic and the Punto Fijo Pact; demolished the regime to its foundations weren’t Chavez or that murderous officer’s caste of the Venezuelan army, which massacred more than 2000 workers and peasants when they staged El Caracazo in 1989, in one of the largest historical massacres carried on by the exploiters against the exploited in a mass struggle.
The Caracazo was one of the more phenomenal anti-imperialist struggles of the Latin American working class. This was an extraordinary feat against the choking of the peoples imposed by imperialism with external debt and the IMF to the oppressed nations of Latin America. This is what the lackeys of the bourgeoisie do not want anybody to say or publish. That›s the truth.
The Caracazo was which death-wounded the Fourth Republic and its plan of attack to the masses. It was a true semi insurrection of the masses that collided violently in tough bouts of barricades in the streets against the military assassins under the orders of the IMF.
Today, when we see in Libya and Syria how the army disintegrated and thousands of rank-and-file soldiers went over to the side of the people with their weapons in hand, if we compare that to the Caracazo yesterday and see the action of Chavez in the same, we can see how all the “pro-worker” and populist demagoguery of the “socialism of the 21st century” unmasks itself. In El Caracazo, Chavez and all killers of that breed of officers were among those who killed workers. His Bolivarian generals and colonels have all blood-stained hands from killing workers and exploited. None of the caste of officers moved their weapons to fight alongside the insurrected people.
In the Caracazo, the class trenches were clear. The deception mounted by Chavezism years later and all its work so far consists of dissolving these boundaries of class and burying the exploited that fought it under the slab of the cemeteries. Chavez came with his coup in 1992 when the revolutionary tide had already passed, the masses had already been massacred, and a temporary reflux of the exploited was accentuated.
They want the oppressed to forget their enemies and oppressors and pass them as allies. That is the Bolivarian movement: a handful of murderers of the people, led to the power to deceive the masses supported on the shoulder of all reformist currents and bureaucracies of the worker organizations in the Americas.
El Caracazo was a phenomenal semi-insurrection of masses. For trade unionism and economicism, the fact that it was not a fight organized by the labor organizations, i.e. unions, deprives El Caracazo of the character of historical and revolutionary action of the exploited. This position ignores, as trade unionist vision, which is the beginning of any revolutionary process: an independent mass action, which confronts politically the bourgeois regime and the Government. It breaks every control of the bourgeois state and all its institutions and combats it openly, and the exploited start to distinguish their enemies.
Its participants fertilize their ideas and their insurrectional action insofar as they see an exit, desperate for moments, for the pains of their existence. There is their elemental consciousness that even surpasses the limits of their organizations that must be overcome and often ignored in order for them to be able to enter combat.
As Lenin and Marx said, revolution is a great mass action which involves masses that have never gone to the streets in protest. “Poor Devils”, which were always abandoned to their fate by workers aristocracies and bureaucracies, are now going into combat. Even the concierges fight, according to Trotsky. And there lies the strength of this mass political struggle. That means the proletariat is not alone. Large sections of the masses come to the revolutionary torrent. Millions of exploited accompany it in combat, including sectors of the ruined middle classes are incorporated into the flood of fight. The trade unionist does not understand that this is expression of the strength of the working class; they are dragged into combat disenchanted masses that in their life have followed all bourgeois institutions and have never before entered the fight. They enter in combat millions of exploited that are not taken into account by trade unions and workers organizations led by the bureaucracy, which do not group over 5 or 10% of the working class.
In Venezuela, this has a huge meaning. There, in a monoproductor oil country, in the ‘ 90s the barrel of oil was worth barely $8. The outbreak of a mass political struggle was imminent, as widespread famine had spread within the population.
82% of the population lived - and still does today - below the poverty line. 70% of the labour force is in a chronic unemployment. Millions of starving and semi-illiterate workers and peasants crowd in the hills of Caracas and all the big cities. A primitive informal economy had left, as does today, millions of unemployed workers to their fate. In the Caracazo it was the Trade Union Confederation (CTV) which played throughout a counter-revolutionary role leaving the employed working class separate from the unemployed. During the Caracazo, a revolutionary action, the CTV blew up through the air.
El Caracazo, hunger, and the sudden tax increases got together, wielding them, the labor ranks. It was the whip of capital that pushed all sectors to a spontaneous revolutionary breakthrough.
This is what the political struggle of the masses means, something that the economicist-sindicalist will never understand. In the political fight the phase of social peace is left behind. In the middle of the crack and the crisis the exploited no longer believe that by pressing on the bosses they can get something. It should be necessary to hit the Government and the regime for not dying of hunger. It is a high step if compared to economic and Trade Unionist fighting, but less than an insurrection organised with clear goals to snatch the power from the enemy. That is the strength and the weakness of any mass semi-insurreccion or spontaneous riot, and not its massiveness that breaks the isolation of the working class, which ultimately fails to centralize it and advance in a Soviet strategy, because the proletariat does not have a revolutionary direction at its head capable of establishing the Alliance of workers and peasant or working class-and-popular Alliance.
The Caracazo was a semi-insurreccion which had not a revolutionary party at its head and hence its main limitation, since its immediate result, which left mortally wounded the Punto Fijo Deal regime, failed to advance to put up bodies of double power, i.e., Soviet, comprising all the masses that joined the revolutionary combat, nor could it end splitting the army horizontally and transform its uprising in into a victorious insurrection. This facilitated the subsequent expropriation by the bourgeoisie of this phenomenal and historic battle of masses which was the first and most decisive historic bout of Latin American masses against the choking of the nation and the looting of imperialism with the biggest scam of the twentieth century that were the foreign debts of the countries of Latin America.
The Caracazo took place at the time when the world proletariat was receding and the black night of capitalist restoration in the former worker States came. From there its “unconscious”, “fleeting” character... forgotten, but that despite this and despite everything it deprived of legitimacy the regime of the surrender and the misery of the Punto Fijo Pact and sealed its death. Although by international conditions, its result would be slow and gave time to the bourgeoisie to sort out, without a revolutionary crisis in the heights, which then Chavezism, as abortion of that process, could capitalize on.
The Caracazo was the largest anti imperialist mass action of the Venezuelan working class and Chavezism was its denial. Its allies weren’t the generals that expropriated that fight but the processes that later and already entered the 21st century continued its work as the revolutionary anti imperialist uprisings of Ecuador, Bolivia, Argentina, etc. This is the truth, and the task of revolutionary Marxism is to run the veil of the trap and the lie that the proletarian treacherous leaderships scattered about the exploited so that they no longer trust their own forces and are subject to manipulation and deception, to the empty handed populism of the exploiting classes.
The Venezuelan Caracazo opened the historical period of rupture of social peace and opened a phase of civil war that is still latent in the conditions of Venezuela, Latin American conditions and worldwide. It’s because this time, since 2008 capitalism is which has received “its ‘ 89”, which leaves Chavez’s empty handed populism more and more exposed.
Trotsky said: “The truth is that the civil war is a particular stage of the class struggle, when it -breaking the framework of legality- reaches the plane of a public confrontation to some extent physical, of the forces in opposition. Conceived in this way civil war covers the spontaneous insurrections determined by local causes, bloody interventions of the counter-revolutionary hordes, the revolutionary general strikes, the insurrection for the seizure of power and the period of liquidation to the counter-revolutionary uprising attempts”. Just what Chavezism came to interrupt was that sequence; but that sequence is the victory of the proletarian revolution. For this reason, the Bolivarian revolution is nothing more than the abortion of that revolution.
El Caracazo had its paradox; it opened a revolutionary situation in Venezuela that ended up giving the power to Chavez who came to abort the emergence of the Soviet power, and the horizontal breakdown of the army. In the success of that abortion, all treacherous leaderships of the world proletariat, regrouped and centralized all at the WSF put a stake their very existence.
Trotsky defined the February revolution as follows, with this paradox. He said: “the bourgeoisie seized power behind the backs of the people. It didn’t have any support in the working classes. But with the power it got something as a second hand support: the Mensheviks and Socialist revolutiona es. Elevated to the top by the masses, they gave a vote of confidence to the bourgeoisie. If we were to examine this operation from the point of view of formal democracy, we would find ourselves facing something like elections of second degree, in which the Mensheviks and SR play the technical role of intermediate link, i.e., electors of the Kadets.”
These are the Stalinists and the Castroites supported and legitimated by the renegades to Trotskyism: intermediate electors of Chavez, the Kirchners, Lula, Morales and... OBAMA.
Some years after the repressed Caracazo, it came a wave of worker struggles against the packet of Caldera in 1997. Caldera plan is defeated with marches in the streets, work stoppages, strikes and hard struggles. From 1996 to 1998 the working-class reassembled its forces. The ebbing after the massacre of El Caracazo is left behind. Latin American working class begins to fight offensive struggles. The Ecuadorian Revolution begins. A wave of strikes and struggles shakes Argentina. It is the awakening of the masses of Latin America. The Venezuelan proletariat retrieves its committees of factories and unions, and starts a proletarian boom with extremely harsh fights against the bureaucracy and the bosses.
Though, the old organisations recovered and the new ones conquered then, are state-ized in 1998, since all the left currents that mounted on that struggle ended up supporting Chavez and handed him the control of the large fighting organizations that had been conquered.
The Venezuelan working class was the vanguard, in the ‘90s, of the Latin American proletariat with a phenomenal mass political struggle, the abovementioned Caracazo, and the proletarian boom in 1996/1998 ended demolishing the regime of the Punto Fijo Pact and its parties. Thus, the terrified bourgeoisie went to look for this “nationalist” and “progressive” Colonel to deceive the masses, divert the revolutionary upsurge and shut off the way to the advancement of the socialist revolution in Venezuela, that had been opening in a decade of fighting.
From the emergence of Chavezism, expropriating the revolution, to Chavez’s surrender to the military coup of 2002
Every revolutionary situation develops “when those of above cannot and those at the bottom don’t want”. But, in the words of Lenin, a revolution begins when an independent mass action opens the way to the revolutionary struggle for power. That road had been opened early in the ‹90s in Venezuela and it was the treacherous leaderships of the masses at Latin American and international level that put on their shoulders Chavezism so it was able to abort the process.
The Venezuelan bourgeoisie trembles today thinking of a new Caracazo, that would be offensive, not defensive, due to the international conditions i.e., the brutal crisis of the world capitalist system. Therefore, everybody sent condolences on the death of Chavez and surrounded the Government of Maduro to prevent a political crisis in the heights from unfolding; terrorized at the thought of an intervention of the masses, the bourgeois shielded themselves with the Bolivarian armed forces and Capriles’ bourgeois opposition, which is also Bolivarian, wearing the same little booklet of the Constitution to stabilize the situation and prevent every crisis in the regime.
Those who have entrenched holding Chavez feel terror and panic to the masses, who broke the contentions and beat them hard blows, not only in the Caracazo. They fear the current wave of working-class struggle against the attack of devaluation, inflation and an unbearable shortage of the living staples. They fear that a proletarian offensive as of the ‘96/’98 boom resurfaces which raises the prospect of the general strike and reunifies the ranks of the working class, reopening the road to socialist revolution.
The ruling classes, even today, have fresh in their memories the defeat that the masses attained against the attempted coup, as we will see later, in 2002, in which Chavez surrendered cowardly before the bishopric and the caste of officers of the army, while the masses came down from the hills, surrounded the barracks and forced the same officers formerly Chavezist and then “putchist” to put him again in power.
The armed forces, as a fundamental institution of the Venezuela bourgeois state, and their caste of officers played a key role becoming in occupation forces under the command of the IMF to massacre the Venezuelan people in the ‘90s. They played a decisive role in the coup attempt of 2002 to redistribute the oil income with a better share for imperialism. Today they close ranks around Maduro, Capriles and the Bolivarian Constitution, to prevent a political crisis from opening gaps through which the mass movement could enter again.
There is one issue that unifies all currents ranging from pro Chavez supporters to the rrrrrrrrredest elements of the self claimed Marxist movement. They are enemies of having a policy to break the caste of the Pro-imperialist bourgeois army officers and organize its plebeian base and the children of the exploited in it together with the workers and the people.
All sheath of the “Bolivarian revolution” is for sweetening the ferocious dictatorship of capital. The bands of armed men define what really the Punto Fijo Deal regime and the Bolivarian Republic have in common: the military party, the officers’ caste that so much yesterday as today has been watching to ensure the interests of the whole of the bourgeoisie and imperialism in Venezuela, beyond the specific differences, the form of the regime and the nature of the Government with which the bourgeoisie dominates.
This continuity of the armed forces in the heart of the Venezuelan regime, and the full state-ization of the trade unions, guarantees a Bonapartist regime with elements of a “sui generis” character insofar as it haggles with imperialism some points of the share in the oil income, but, as was already stated, by rigidly controlling the masses.
On the genesis and emergence
What we are talking about is the genesis of Chavezism, as expropiator of the revolution. The Carlos Andrés Pérez Government had implemented a packet of measures ordered by the IMF, after signing with the same a letter of intent on February 28, 1989.
After the Caracazo and the savage repression it came an ebbing, with the masses accumulating their hatred and sitting up with their dead. The army had been responsible for the massacre. It was the focus of the hatred of the masses. Therefore, by attacking the army and placing it as the greatest enemy of the exploited, not just the Punto Fijo regime was put in question but also the whole Venezuelan State and its murderous caste of officers.
A sector of the caste of officers, of the most rancid bourgeoisie, perceived this issue. Not only the regime had been death-wounded, but also targeted the heart of the bourgeois state. And that was the largest nightmare of the bourgeoisie. Therefore, on 4 February 1992, a sector of the caste of officers headed by Chavez, stepped forward and tried to take a preventive coup, before a new onslaught of the masses was in the streets. This attempt was known as “the madrugonazo” (“the hit at dawn”).
This crisis at the Tops encouraged a wave of protests, culminating in May 1996, when the Congress decided also striking out Andres Perez.
The regime and the Government were in crisis. Old former president Rafael Caldera takes charge of the presidency as the last of the Governments of the regime of the Punto Fijo Deal, supported by the Stalinists. Caldera was already campaigning about Chavez and “the putschists” being the real friends of the people.
So the regime of the Punto Fijo Pact was melting down, and they began to create mechanisms for the caste of officers to safeguard the State, since it had massacred more than 2,000 exploited in 1989.
The Government of Caldera had a problem. The oil barrel was between 30 and 40 dollars in the mid-’ 90s. The government could just apply another packet, as Carlos Andrés Pérez. And it did so in 1996 with the increase in the domestic price of gasoline, the liberation of fees and fares of public services, a general increase in prices... in short, a classic IMF package, which the working class defeated again on the streets, as we have already said, with its wave of struggles of 1996 /’97.
We describe this because you cannot falsify and deny historical facts. This shows as we have already said that the Venezuelan exploited masses were the vanguard of our continent in the fight against the looting of external debt and the IMF against the oppressed nations of Latin America. Long live the Venezuelan working class and exploited! They are the truly anti-imperialist forces! They were then followed by their brothers and sisters from Ecuador, Bolivia and Argentina, who started revolutionary processes.
Inventing a legend of a “Chavezist anti-imperialism” which would have been the promoter and creator of this fight in Venezuela and Latin America, it is not only falsifying history but continuing submitting the working class to their executioners, to the impostors, who expropriated every anti-imperialist and revolutionary struggle. The exploited had 2,000 dead in the streets. Not even one casualty was suffered by the exploiters and the Chavezist bourgeoisie.
The renegades to Trotskyism, the same as Stalinism, will enter History as the greatest counterfeiters of the revolutionary struggle of the masses. They are already a school of counterfeiters a propos Chavezism as Stalinism was around the Russian and international revolution.
In 1998 Chavez takes the presidency. The bourgeoisie needs him. It was starting the revolutionary tide that defeated the pro-imperialist Government of Bucaram in Ecuador. The “twin” of Chavez, the notorious “Colonel Gutiérrez expropriated large working-class and peasant marches to Quito with anti-imperialist demagoguery; he was exposed after taking the presidency after he completed a year, with the workers and peasants expelling the entire Parliament and even chasing the Maoist representatives that supported him.
Chavez arrives to power in Venezuela due to the panic that the bourgeoisie had about the masses opening a revolutionary process as in Ecuador. Imperialism and the Venezuelan bourgeoisie learned from their setbacks. They immediately called a constituent to appear to be them who defeated the Fourth Republic and the regime of the Punto Fijo Pact. We insist, to save the armed forces from the hatred of the masses they set up their “Bolivarian Republic”. They changed the form so that it kept the essence of the Venezuelan semi-colonial capitalist regime and its band of armed men remained intact.
It is necessary to tell the truth. This constituent tried to re-establish the prestige of all institutions of the Venezuelan bourgeois state, changing some of them and their relationships in the Bolivarian Constitution, but saving the murderous caste of officers that repressed the Venezuelan people.
Marxists ought not to confound the content of revolution with the content of reaction and counter-revolution. The Bolivarian revolution was the bailing-out of the murderous armed forces and semi-colonial bourgeois state, cornered by the revolutionary struggle of the masses.
Over this detour, over that expropriation, the “Boliburguesía” arose which sought to rely on the momentum of the masses to negotiate their share of oil income to imperialism as junior partners, but on the condition of controlling them fiercely. They sought to bargain their businesses without attacking the interests of imperialism, as with oil at $ 100 per barrel they could have repaid the entire foreign debt, something that the IMF could not get in the ‘90s.
We insist, it is necessary to tell the masses the truth. What was the result of this abortion of the revolution? The masses filled Venezuela with blood and fighting for a decade. They could have taken power, solve their unheard sufferings and miseries, and ended up receiving alms from “miracle” plans, defective “missions” of literacy... and this was achieved not as charity from Chavez, but as a by-product of the revolutionary struggle of the masses. Venezuela was not a new Cuba; peaceful coexistence with imperialism propagandized by the Castroites was respected and upheld by all leaderships of the Latin American and world proletariat. We insist, not even the alms delivered to the masses, which keep the vast majority of them in extreme poverty was a gracious concession of the murderous Generals of the Venezuelan army or the anti-worker bourgeoisie in that country. They gave something not to lose everything. Filling Venezuela with working-class blood only to get empty shelves in the supermarkets, skyrocketing fees and fares and levels of unprecedented misery that today appear with clarity after so much quackery from the Chavezist and reformist. That’s the truth.
No concession was free, no alms given to the masses that today the bourgeoisie tries to pass as reforms was free. If not, why did not the bossed give them in 1989, 1992, 1996 in Venezuela? They only delivered IMF packages, beatings, and death.
And now, once the global crisis initiated and penetrating in Venezuela, they, with the Boli-bourgeosie at their head front, apply the same starvation plans and paquetazos that Caldera and Carlos Andrés Pérez would applaud and which now Capriles sanctify (who is given the luxury of talk about “Red paquetazos”) and Obama... that receives in time and form - as it has always done - Venezuelan oil that is processed in refineries in the United States in the Gulf of Mexico coast. This route, and that phenomenal business of US imperialism in Venezuela, along with the maintenance of the armed forces of the bourgeois state is what unites such a powerful chain in History from Caldera to Chavez... A chain that will only be cut by the triumph of the socialist revolution in Venezuela and Latin America and mainly with the US working class taking the power.
The gestation of the Pro-imperialist coup of 2002: with the increase in the price of oil, imperialism wants to end the bargaining of the Venezuelan native bourgeoisie... Chavez surrendered, while the revolutionary masses and the working class defeated the coup
The “anti-imperialism” of Chavez was in short a barrel of oil to $100 that allowed him to repay the entire debt to the IMF, to save the interests of imperialism in the region with his “Summit of the americas”, the ALBA, the UNASUR, the MERCOSUR of the transnationals, and continue supplying a significant portion of the oil needed by the USA, of which is a great commercial and financial partner to Venezuela.
Chavezism was part of a wave of expropriations of proletarian revolutions in Latin America, where Stalinism, Castroism, resurrected by the renegades of Trotskyism, put on their shoulders the Bolivarian bourgeoisie from Argentina, Venezuela, Bolivia, Brazil to manipulate the masses and divert the revolutionary processes. But in 2002 there was a crisis in Venezuela, a coup d’etat, as the barrel of oil went to 120-140 dollars, thanks to “bandit” Bush, who was feedong his fleet with Venezuelan oil to invade Iraq and Afghanistan. The Bolivarian bourgeoisie was already conducting much of that business. Other fractions of the bourgeoisie and imperialism were to shrink its share in the distribution of oil income. And they would not allow it.
It is one thing to bring Chavez to stop the revolution with oil at $40 a barrel, and another thing is doing that with the barrel to $140 and Chavez staying with most part of the booty. The coup was a “Chronicle of a death foretold”, and it came in 2002.
What did the “brave Commander” Chavez do back then? He surrendered to the bishops and generals, without a single shot. As Marx said of Bolívar: the general of the flight...
Again the masses came down from the hills. They surrounded the barracks. It began to break horizontally the army base. Rank and file soldiers began to go over to the popular side. The ghost of the Caracazo ran through Venezuela. Conditions to avenge the 2000 workers massacred in el Caracazo of 1989 were there. There was at the order of the day to destroy this murderous, officer’s caste, agent of imperialism... Chavez gave in to the army and the church and the masses wanted to release him from prison. The bourgeoisie that was at first celebrating, turned within 24 hours to be terrorized by the revolutionary action of the exploited.
The same putschist generals and bosses were terrified that the masses comply with the mandate of the Caracazo and not a stone remained of that murderous bourgeois army and that from the huge political fight arose the soviets of workers, the “miserable” of the city and the countryside and the soldiers. So they went to the bishop palace for Chavez and put him back in power.
That is the tragedy threatening the Venezuelan masses: “Marxists” pretending to pass as “anti-imperialist” the General of the withdrawal. For them the masses are nothing, although these masses were the true protagonists of the Venezuela revolted.
The Trotskyists will put things in place. Either you are with the Caracazo, with the struggles of 1996-’98, with the anti-coup revolutionary uprising in 2002 to pave the way for the workers and the Socialist Revolution, settling accounts with the murderers of the Venezuelan people; or you are tied to the apron strings of the murderous generals coated as “anti-imperialist” and “Bolivarian”, and supporting the juicy businesses of the imperialist bankers with the bolibourgeoisie.
That treacherous “Bolivarian” left will in time pay accounts to the masses, when the struggle of the working class stops the package which today Maduro applies and Chavez would have applied perhaps with greater anti-worker boldness, i.e., devaluation, inflation, shortages, increase in gasoline, and more attacks and repression over the working class, as those launched by Rafael Caldera and Carlos Andrés Pérez, who ruled by repressing and killing workers and poor peasants.
With the argument of “whoever attacks the State enterprises is a traitor to the Bolivarian revolution” they will attack the workers when they strike or protest. They are the same bourgeoisie and their generals who massacred in the Caracazo. With the world economic crisis now all of them will be Carlos Andrés Perez and Caldera, because Chavez, Maduro and Capriles are all agents of Obama covered under the cloak of the Bolivarian Constitution.
But the 2002 coup was not a «national», Venezuelan coup. It was a counter-revolutionary response of imperialism to stop, at one point, the upwards advance of the revolutionary wave of the masses of the Americas, which had been shaking Argentina from its foundations, advancing in Bolivia and threatened to overcome the limits of Chavezism in Venezuela and throughout Latin America.
The defeat of the coup meant that the Bolivarian bourgeoisie was called to deal with the masses, along with other expropriators, rogue sidings of imperialism, as the Kirchners in Argentina, Correa in Ecuador, etc. After paying lip service to anti-imperialism through many “anti-imperialist” flips and small concessions of alms, they ended up enslaving Latin American working-class and arming regional markets for imperialism, the transnational corporations, mining companies, oil companies and their businesses, in a shameless way that would make blush Bush and the agents of the FTAs of the 2005 / 2006 (such as Mexico, Chile and Peru). That is why everyone is now in the UNASUR, the CELAC, etc.
Chavez had to pay for his freedom, cheerfully and disciplined. The embrace with Uribe, after which the latter massacred in Ecuadorian territory the top leadership of the FARC, calling to do business together was a currency of payment. Being the largest ally, at ALBA, to advance to the capitalist restoration in Cuba with the Castro brothers, he has received and continues still to receive the biggest applause from his imperialist partners.
The working class in Venezuela needs to conquer a revolutionary program and an internationalist Trotskyist party which is the vanguard in the combat for refounding the Fourth International in the Americas
Chavez has been a great leader of the bourgeoisie. He has received the condolences of US imperialism. It was a great elector of Obama next to Castro. When immigrant and colour workers did not want any more to vote again for Obama, they were transformed into the big Obama voters. Chavez and Fidel Castro turned en masse to disappointed colour and immigrant workers so they went to vote Obama. On Capitol Hill, Chavez will also have his mausoleum.
Bankers in Wall Street, the big imperialist bourgeoisie and their Bolivarian partners of Miami need to be repaid Venezuelan foreign debt and demand their share of oil income. For this they require devaluation and carry most of the dollars for themselves. For the people it will be just more inflation, currency without backing, increases in the public services, etc. Capitalism is not a charity society, and less so when imperialism is in bankruptcy.
The margins of action for the native bourgeoisie of all Latin America are shrinking. The US working class is obliged to pay for the crisis of Wall Street and the direct agents of imperialism of the native bourgeoisie are also decide to have the proletariat of their countries pay for it.
If those imperialist powers that have emerged victorious from the world economic crash opened in 2008, such as Germany or the U.S., pushed to impose a Treaty of submission and allegiance to lesser imperialist powers such as Greece, Italy, Spain, etc... what will they not require from their colonies and semi-colonies?
Already reformism increasingly less may pass the alms as victories and conquests, because the global crisis is already here. The package of Maduro and Capriles that has been launched and much more that they are preparing against the exploited of Venezuela, and which is being launched against the world working class, will show governments of Rafael Caldera and Carlos Andrés Pérez as the true twin stars of Chavez and all the pro imperialist left which supports his followers.
Sooner than later the siege of the treacherous leaderships and their scams to the proletariat, will be broken by the masses. The “December 20” in Argentina and their cry “that everybody goes away and never returns!” will come again. Again the cry of “gringos, get out of here!” in Bolivia, the “out with the IMF!” of the Caracazo, the “expropriation of the copper and transnationals” of Chile. The One Million Men anti-war March will return in the U.S. and hundreds of communes as in Oaxaca will rise up in the bloodied Mexico.
Military bases in Honduras and Colombia will have the same fate as the military bases of murderous Kaddafi and Bashar al Assad, partners and friends of Chavez and the Bolivarian.
But at that time only the Trotskyists will have the possibility of talking to and looking at the proletariat in the eye. The banners of Caracazo have come to rest in the hands of the only theory and program that can lead to victory: those of the Fourth International re-founded.
The anti-imperialist democratic-revolucionary tasks are still pending and unresolved in Venezuela. The break with imperialism must be consummated. Only the working class, leading the exploited masses, can conquer it.
In spite of the a huge oil income, the exploited are hungry because most of the oil rent is taken by imperialism and the native bourgeoisie.
There will be no national independence in Venezuela UNLESS THERE IS EXPROPRIATION OF THE BANKS WITHOUT COMPENSATION AND NACIONALIZED UNDER WORKERS CONTROL! FOR A SINGLE STATE BANK WHICH, TOGETHER WITH THE NATIONALIZATION OF FOREIGN TRADE, WILL MAKE THE NATION GET RID OF THE PARASITIC CAPITALISTS WITH THEIR COMMISSIONS, THEIR REAPING OF SUPER-PROFITS IN IMPORTS, THE THEFT OF DOLLARS FROM OIL INCOME AND ITS CIRCUIT TO THE UNITED STATES FEDERAL RESERVE AND THE BUSINESS IN MIAMI.
There are plenty of funds for a strong plan of investments in nationalized companies. But to do so, we must start for not paying a single bolivar (Venezuelan currency) of these expropriations (totaling $ 26 billion dollars) to those who exploited for decades the Venezuelan working class.
Not another bolivar for the payment of the foreign debt! Immediate disavowal of the 105 billion dollars of the fraudulent Venezuelan foreign debt, contracted by the lackeys of imperialism of the regime of the Punto Fijo Deal, which has been both paid promptly and augmented by the sacking of imperialism, performed this time together with the Bolibourgeoisie!
For a plan of public works for the construction of millions of homes, to end with the black market and the handing out of alms to the exploited that have the black gold beneath their feet! For public health services and education, free and of quality for everyone!
Enough of wage freezes, high cost of living and inflation! For the liquidation of the chain of intermediation in the marketing of foodstuffs and consumer goods! Supply and price control committees!
Denunciation of all PDVSA oil contracts with the imperialist oil companies! Full nationalization of Venezuelan oil under workers control!
If the exploited do not honor the fraudulent external debt and put the banks under worker control they will be able to resolve the drama of unemployment and job insecurity.
Solving the chronic unemployment, which now stands at 21% / 22% of the labour force, is one of the big pending tasks alongside the breaking with imperialism. Neither the Punto Fijo Pact nor the Bolivarian Republic could resolve them, and no bourgeois regime will. Only a Government of the working class, expropriating the bourgeoisie and imperialism, on the basis of the demolition of this semi-colonial bourgeois state, may terminate with the scourge of unemployment of the Venezuelan masses.
Enough of alms! Decent jobs for everybody! A shift more in all factories! For a Plan of public works under the control of the workers!
It must be put in standing committees of unemployed, organized from the trade unions, factory committees and all the labor organizations!
The Venezuelan working class will not be able even to dream of defending its present conquests and get new if it does not take as one of its key demands the resolution of the chronic crisis of millions of unemployed, often used by the bourgeoisie against the workers, or maintained with handouts that are already not even enough to survive, as the “Miracles” plans.
Let’s get together all the worker ranks!
For a National Congress of employed and unemployed workers from all over Venezuela, with delegates of the unemployed committees, one each 100% of all the labor movement, to raise a list of claims, of decent jobs for all, wage increases to conquer a minimum wage, for a sliding scale of wages according to the family shopping basket defined by the labor organizations!
To move forward in a new offensive by their conquests, the working class should coordinate those who struggle. It should be standing committees and strike and claim pickets.
Let’s break with any subordination to the Ministry of Labor and raise a single list of demands comprising all the exploited!
For self-defence committees against the gangs of hitmen, scabs and strike-breakers paid by the capitalists, and the repressive national guard of the Government of the Bolibourgeoisie!
Down with the breed of officers assassin of their own people and organizer of coups de etat! For committees of soldiers! Full organization rights for rank and file soldiers! For a minimum wage, according to the cost of living and mobile during their military service! Delegates of soldiers along with trade unions, labor organizations and supply and price-control committees, and organizations of unemployed!
All the organizations that speak on behalf of the working class and their struggle must just now break with the bourgeoisie. The unique and effective breakthrough to conquer the independence of the Venezuelan working class is putting on its feet the true power of the exploited, the only one that can carry up to the end the conquest that Venezuela openly break with imperialism.
This only can be achieved with a revolutionary Government of the working class and its allies the oppressed masses of the countryside and the city, supported by organizations of direct democracy and the armament of the masses. For a Republic that is neither that of the Punto Fijo Deal or Bolivarian! For a worker, Socialist, Venezuela without generals, capitalists and imperialist bankers!
For the Socialist United States of Central and South America!
The continental policy of the “Bolivarian bourgeoisie” has been, in various forms, such as the UNASUR and regional blocs: keeping alive and well the imperialist plundering of the oppressed nations of South America, Central America and the Caribbean.
No to the ALBA plan of the transnational corporations and the capitalist restoration in Cuba! No to the ALBA plan of the Pact of Chavezism with the murderous fascist regime of the US military bases in Colombia!
Down with the MERCOSUR of the transnationals and the NAFTA of the Andean countries and Mexico, which enslave our Nations to imperialism!
A single Latin American Revolution will be that lead, defeating the bourgeois States, the Socialist Revolution, which will be Latin American and global, or it won’t be nothing!
The Bolivarians have their program: the unity with Obama, against the US workers and the oppressed peoples of the world. The program of the socialist revolution in Latin America, Central America and the Caribbean has its key ally to overcome the class enemy: the US working class, which yesterday rose against the war and for the rights of immigrants. The same working class that yesterday in Wisconsin called to “fight as in Egypt”, and indicated the world and Latin American working class what are the conditions for victory: expropriating that 1% of Wall Street parasites who condemn the world to misery and barbarism.
Let’s expropriate the 600 parasites who handle 240 cartels and MNCs that control the whole of the world economy!
Against the Bolivarian revolution - a caricature of revolution-, we fighters of the Fourth International fight for the Socialist United States of North, Central and South America.
The Venezuelan and Latin American Trotskyists have a responsibility in History: setting accounts with this school of falsifiers who want to make the workers of that country believe that they are subjects of the bourgeoisie, incapable of liberating from oppression by themselves. It is necessary to tell them the truth: the great actors of the anti-imperialist struggle are the exploited fighting against all the capitalists in Venezuela
Reformist leaderships want to picture even the worker gains as gifts of the capitalists, as if they were not a by-product of the heroism of the masses and their phenomenal struggles.
That is the left of Obama and Wall Street, where the Bolibourgeoisie has deposited the reserves of oil income (in JP Morgan and Citibank). We must put an end to the left of Obama and their slander and lies against the masses.
Today more than ever the battle cry is “the liberation of the workers will be the work of the own workers!”El Caracazo lives, the socialist revolution in the Americas will succeed when the masses have at their head the fighters of the Fourth International. This is our historical obligation: helping the masses to get rid of the treacherous leaderships that at each step disorganize the masses’ struggle and submit the masses to their enemies.
The Venezuelan, Latin American and US working class, have debts to collect against Chavezism: 250,000 massacred in Colombia, 60,000 in Mexico, Cuba handed out to imperialism. The working class of the Latin American countries, looted one thousand and one times in order to get functioning that country of the maquilas and the MNCs, have a lot of debts to be repaid.
With Obama, Chavez and the Castros’ friend, thousands of immigrants have been expelled from the USA. Their children have been born there, in USA. While the parents are expelled, the children have been sent to orphanages by their thousand dozens. Thus is the way Obama and imperialism treat the workers and the immigrants.
That’s why our battle cry must be that of the Bolivian working class in its revolution of 2003/2005: “Gringos go home! Let’s smash the MNCs! Let’s treat them as they treat us! Let’s expropriate their banks and enterprises! So we will see if they go on attacking our children!”
The US working class, living on food subsidies of 3 dollars a day, with millions of immigrants overexploited, does not deserve the government of that “blackened Bush” –Obama. The latter treats the working class as Bush did to the Iraqi, Afghani, etc. working classes and all the oppressed peoples under the yoke of the murderous US imperialists.
Justice will come in the hands of the socialist revolution, and not thanks to that caricature of revolution that is the Bolivarian revolution and its generals, experts in fleeing, as Marx said about Simon Bolivar, and we should say about the Bolivarian generals of today.
As an expression of the breaking to the left of the working class of the Americas with the contention dikes imposed on it by the WSF and the reformist left, thousands of workers do not accept already and won’t in the near future the expropriation of their struggle in the hands of the treacherous leaderships and the native bourgeoisies. From Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, the exploited have their class brothers and sisters in Venezuela with one of the most advanced anti-imperialist consciences in the Americas, conquered in anti-imperialist combats such as El Caracazo.
We also have a support in the combat of the Cuban working class, which has not been yet defeated and maintains up to now its anti-imperialist conscience. In spite to the prostration imposed on it by the Castro brothers, the class enemies will need still a lot of counterrevolutionary activity to take the Cuban working class out of the scenes for a period. Nothing is closed yet. All these contradictions will find a denouement in the combats of the proletariat of the Americas and internationally.
The experience of the Venezuelan masses with the hijackers of their anti-imperialist struggle is ongoing. The workers in Bolivia, who are already confronting the government of Morales, and the left wing of the US working class, that suffer the government of Obama –he who heads the counterrevolutionary offensives of the finance capital in the planet- are showing that the conditions are starting to mature for setting in place the Fourth International and the program of Trotskyism in order to get a way to the masses.
A wave of revolutionary fighting in the Americas shook the world between 1996/2005 in the same fashion that have recently done the masses in North Africa and Middle East.
The fight for founding anew the Fourth International for these huge tasks that we have ahead, is a decisive question. That is essential for advancing to found anew the Venezuelan Trotskyism. That will not be attained on the base of the Stalinist and Menshevik theory-program, but on the base of the theory-program of the Permanent revolution and the Transitional Program for the socialist revolution.
Alan Woods, that sinister liquidator of Trotskyism, handed as a gift the Transitional Program to Chavez so to dress the latter as socialist. The Transitional Program must be recouped, because it it of the working class, of the exploited against the exploiters.
The working class does not have the leadership it deserves. The struggles of the exploited need a Leninist, pro-insurrection, combating party in Venezuela. For that it is ineludible to set up an internationalist re-grouping of the healthy forces of the international Trotskyist movement and the revolutionary worker organizations.
For a committee for the foundation anew of the Fourth International!
Internationalist Trotskyism must stand up in Venezuela and show the conditions for victory to the heroic working class in that country!
Liga Comunista de Trabajadores
(Workers’ Communist League)
VS. STAGED REVOLUTION
Discussions with the pro-Bolivarian left
April 17th, 2013
Venezuela after Chavez’s death
“Democracy” Vs. “Fascism”?
Or workers and socialist revolution
vs. higher imperialist plunder?
Comrades of El Topo Obrero
We are preparing a statement on Venezuela and the latest developments.
Your position seems principled, but we believe that there is a characterization error about the fascist coup that you see in Capriles’ action, and of course this has programmatic consequences. To our knowledge, you do not take into account the following considerations:
1- Venezuela, as Trotsky said about Spain, has hit the underwater rocks of the global economic crisis. All kinds of margin and all possibility of bourgeois nationalism flirting with the masses to negotiate their share of national income with imperialism is over.
2- For the bourgeoisie and imperialism, the death of Chavez has been a very hard blow, as we have already stated in our statements about it. This was the best government to, with some legitimacy, attack the masses, as was already happening with devaluations, high cost of living, submission to imperialism, payment of external debt, etc.
3- The electoral result is nothing more than the expression that Chavezism begins to be a squeezed lemon. It is a powerful bourgeois faction in Venezuela, which will defend its business, as Capriles would, against the masses.
Capriles is the bourgeois fraction that has recognized the Bolivarian Constitution, and its struggle to achieve power is through it. This bourgeois fraction has found, unexpectedly, in fact, with 50% of the votes. It fights for his position in business, after 14 years of not being able to manage them.
We are facing a huge political crisis at the heights, since every government that emerges will be a weak government to attack the masses. For that reason, the ideal electoral result was the previous one: the one that gave a two-party regime of the strong Bolivarian constitution of Capriles-Chavez, and with a strong government to attack the masses, as was Chavez himself, who had won the elections with a margin of more than 9%.
4- The current electoral result is an expression of the Chavezism crisis, but above all of the crisis of the revolutionary leadership of the proletariat, since all the left conceals that they were all lackeys of Chavez, Castro, Stalinism, all supported by the renegades of the Trotskyism of the continent, and that they were stuck to a government that has launched a brutal attack on the working class and the people. On their shoulders they support a fraction of billionaires, such as the boli-bourgeoisie, as agents of Obama as Capriles today, and who, like all bourgeois governments, continue to centralize the bourgeoisie’s attack against the masses.
As we will see later, in Venezuela today we are not in the face of a Bonapartist coup as in 2002 against Chavez, since today most of the armed forces have opted for the assumption of Maduro.
Capriles is not organizing a fascist coup, because that would be suicidal for the entire bourgeoisie. It would light the flame of revolution. He has sought and will seek, for now, to take over the government, legitimized by the Bolivarian Constitution. His pressure struggle in the streets today - which he has quickly decided - is for that.
Meanwhile, Maduro has taken great care, beyond all bragging, that the masses do not intervene against Capriles. They know they play with fire. One more point in the opening of the gaps in inter-bourgeois clashes can mean a route for the entry of the masses.
5- The US position is that a legitimate government emerges. For now, his policy is not to push a Bonapartist coup like the one in 2002, nor a fascist putsch. We are facing a fight of two factions that abide by the Bolivarian constitution, that fight hard for business, but that seek an agreement because they know that if they appeal to the masses openly, they can break into the political crisis at the height demolishing all the institutions of power in Venezuela. The masses want bread. Those above dispute business, and for this the control of the state.
The socialist revolution is not a central factor in Venezuela for the bourgeoisie to play the last regime of this before the revolution, which is fascism, and neither of the two fractions intends to carry, in this clash, serious consequences. The armed forces have already been defined by the assumption of Maduro and by leaving Capriles enormously strengthened so that, in the event that the government burns or weakens, there will be a bourgeois replacement. Ultimately, the true owner of the Bolivarian revolution that is that murderous officer caste of the Venezuelan army, who yesterday massacred the Caracazo, put Chavez in jail and when the masses defeated the coup attempt in 2002, they called him again to power to share with them all the business of the Chavezite bourgeoisie. Moreover, Cabello, the head of the Venezuelan armed forces is one of the biggest millionaires in Venezuela. The caste of officers of the armed forces stands as an arbitrator in this dispute... within the Bolivarian constitution.
We have already seen Maduro opposing all action of the masses in the streets, and Capriles, before the prairie burns down, get them out of the scene quickly, so that it is the middle class that protests only with pots and cans.
The basis of the agreement they prepare, we think, is based on the fact that Capriles will maintain a policy of pressure and blackmail, but to get into the regime with backroom agreements, or with the possibility of reaching the government in the immediate future. There is something that unifies the two bourgeois factions, which is that they both fear that the masses struggle and take to the streets.
Maduro is the bourgeois nationalism that can no longer be. Capriles is the direct representative of the imperialist banking, which does not want to be left out of business in the coming years, and has taken the banner of the Bolivarian revolution to achieve it. We do not see imperialism risking, by now, with a fascist attempted coup.
It would be a suicidal policy, because it would be about to provoke a big response from the masses, including a rupture of the Maduro base with the Bolivarian bourgeoisie, which would take to the streets, we insist, despite and against the Chavist bourgeoisie. It would accelerate the breakup of the masses with Maduro. It would be the bourgeoisie using all its agents, when it needs them to attack the masses. It would mean removing Capriles, the “democratic opponent” of the Bolivarian constitution, and putting him as a fascist agent. That is an error of appreciation.
This is very important. In Bolivia, for example, there was a fascist uprising by the Media Luna in 2006/2007, which had the big oil companies behind and the Santa Cruz oligarchy, which was supported by methods of civil war, supported by the middle classes, against the proletariat. The popular front had thrown buckets of water on the fire of the revolution and lulled the masses. Fascism rose at a time when Morales’ Constituent Assembly was functioning. The agreement imposed by the OAS was that the constituent did not vote for the expropriation of any land greater than 5000 hectares (the oligarchy does not have any property higher than 5000 hectares in Bolivia). The OAS and the US imposed a pact on the constituent between the two bourgeois factions, which today coexist in peace, attacking the masses together and supporting the popular front government of Morales, supported by the policy of class collaboration of the leadership of the COB.
6- In Venezuela we see that what is at issue is to achieve some kind of agreement that guarantees to imperialism that the Maduro government will openly attack the masses, imposing new devaluations, and giving imperialism the money that has to give them. But, to do so, it must remain as legitimate as possible. Therefore, they asked him to count the votes. The fraction of Maduro does not accept, and proposes another type of agreement: municipal elections, and as part of them, the recall referendum in 2 years.
We are facing a negotiation of two bourgeois fractions on the ledge. The two, Bolivarian, and the two Obama agents.
7- The working class is the one who pays and will pay for the economic crisis and the business of all the bourgeois factions and imperialism in Venezuela. The Bolivarian regime is now a bastardized reissue of the Punto Fijo Regime, and its governments will be nothing more than repetitions of Andres Perez and other lackeys of imperialism. The working class will thus pay for the betrayal of their leaders, who at international level supported Chavez and bourgeois nationalism. Today, he rises as a direct agent of imperialism and attacks the masses, to which he says: “Capriles, the “fascist “, or support me, I will impose, with the socialism of the 21st century, a new devaluation of 80%, I will reduce all the expenses of the state in services, and I will rigorously pay the external debt to the Yankees, so forget about any investment in the nationalized industry”. “Either Capriles, the bourgeois reaction, or me, with the little bird in the head talking to Chavez.” With imperialism playing a very careful role only in propaganda for the counting of votes, the officer caste has decided that they still have to get a lot of juice from the lemon squeezed out of chavismo, attacking the masses.
When there is a struggle of bourgeois fields, for Marxists it is a very serious mistake to be in one of them in the political field. We mustn’t place ourselves in a front with Chavezism against Capriles, since the proletariat must raise, as a flag, first anti-imperialist demands to unmask that the two bourgeois factions are lackeys of Obama and the transnationals.
But, in any case, in Venezuela we are not facing a struggle of bourgeois fields in the military field. We are not facing a Bonapartist coup, which would lead us to defend democratic liberties against a weakest Bonapartist regime.
We are facing an inter-bourgeois dispute. We are facing two factions that come from elections and do not recognize their triumphs within the Bolivarian constitution itself, and with a government, such as the Chavist one, which has been promoting a brutal attack on the masses, while Capriles, benefited by an excellent election, demands entering now in business.
Of course, for imperialism the best government it would need would be Capriles’, because of the social base he manipulates and controls. But one thing is to want and another thing is to be able to do it. If he goes a millimeter beyond the relationship of forces the giant who rose in the Caracazo and in 2002 when they tried to give a military coup can awaken.
The Marxists, then, have to fight in the first place for the proletariat to take out all the anti-imperialist babble and its chatter to the Chavist bourgeoisie, which comes from calling for Obama to vote in the US, from handing over the Colombian resistance and Cuba to imperialism.
Out the OAS and Obama, the UNASUR, the transnationals and their bankers of Venezuela and throughout Latin America! Out the ALBA that gives Cuba to the “gusanos” of Miami! The attack is suffered by the masses. Workers pay the crisis with devaluation, inflation and high cost of living.
We must stop the attack of the capitalists and the Chavez government, today under the leadership of Maduro, who for some time has been imposing a “red packet” of hunger and misery against the masses! Capriles is preparing to do it in a government of national unity with Maduro, with a pact behind the scenes with him and the armed forces, or working as an alternative when the lemon juice squeezed out of chavezism runs out.
We must stop the attack of the capitalists! We must end with inflation, the high cost of living and unemployment! To achieve this, we must conquer the mobile scale of wages and hours of work. We must expropriate imperialism, its bankers, the capitalist bourgeoisie and bourgeois millionaire of Venezuela, which is the Chavist bourgeoisie! All of them are allied to imperialism in their business. That is why we must impose workers’ control in all branches of industry and expropriate bankers without payment and ignore any illegitimate debt to imperialism.
8- The deception of “Socialism of the 21st century” reaches the end, and unmasks itself, with the masses paying the crisis; rare “socialism” with which only the bourgeoisie and imperialism have benefited; and Capriles, who was not born from a cabbage but from the unrestricted respect for private property by Chavezism. The “revolution in peace and democracy” only left fat pockets to the entire bourgeoisie -Chavist and non-chavista-, the bankers and imperialism, and with hunger, misery, unemployment and high cost of living to the exploited. The verse of the “Bolivarian revolution” and the criminal lie of “socialism by peaceful means” is finished. Because what will come, if the proletariat does not intervene, will be the bonapartisation of Maduro’s government and its armor against the masses, hugs - like the one of Chavez and Uribe yesterday - today between Capriles and Maduro after fireworks, or, if the working class does not react in time, in the future fascist or putschist attempts.
The “verbal attacks” of Maduro to the bourgeoisie are lies to deceive the workers and the people, when in reality they are two bourgeois factions that today are confronted by business and to achieve legitimacy to attack the masses. Bolivarian super-millionaires have nothing to envy, in their fortunes and exploitation of the working class, the oligarchs of Capriles.
Meanwhile, the officer caste of the armed forces today holds Maduro provisionally, and insists that Capriles remain strong, very strong, but in opposition. This was negotiated after five hours of scrutiny with a late result.
This caste of bourgeois officers, reactionary to the core and coup-participant of 2002, the biggest beneficiary of the business of the “boli-bourgeoisie” after the coup, is the one that will also bless, without any doubt, in a public pact or behind the scenes -under the mantle of the UNASUR?- the Bolivarian regime between Maduro attacking the masses and Capriles preparing itself as an alternative of power.
The entire imperialist press announces this provisional agreement. Capriles knows he cannot play with fire, which is not the time for a fascist attempt. Fascism, we insist, is the last resort of the bourgeoisie, after the popular front wasted all the forces of the masses and their fighting energies. That was the Bolivian scenario, as we said. But even then, we could see in Bolivia that this fascist attempt was a pressure in extremis, since if it went one step further from the four provinces of the Media Luna, and tried to reach the Altiplano, it could meet with a revolutionary rebellion of the proletariat crushing it, which surely dislocated also the government of the popular front, the armed forces... and the Bolivarian bourgeoisie.
Imperialism today has other institutions to continue attacking the masses, as we saw. In the first place, Maduro must end up disorganizing and demoralizing the masses, if he decides to stay and does not decide to agree with Capriles today. It must, like a squeezed lemon, apply the worst of attacks against them. If you do not decide to count the votes, more squeezed lemon should be.
For that reason, the pressure of Capriles is “in extremis”. Maduro must guarantee to hand out Cuba, bound hand and foot to the Yankees and the “gusanos” in Miami. It will have to export the “attack to the Venezuelan” and sustain it, as a faithful lackey of imperialism, in the entire American continent, together with the Kirchners, the Lulas, the Dilmas, the Piñeras and the other scourge of the native bourgeoisies.
But this must be covered with the greatest possible legitimacy. If it is not with the masses in the streets, or with a vote count. Who will give that legitimacy and authority for Maduro to assume this Friday? The officer caste and the armed forces, which have already dictated that Maduro won. Meanwhile, all bourgeois factions make Capriles fully strengthen. That is a triumph of the entire bourgeois regime as a whole, regardless of whether the electoral result shows who the boss in business in Venezuela is, and that leads to a political crisis at the height.
There is no vote count. The problem is resolved in the upcoming municipal elections, including a recall referendum. This is posed by Maduro, supported by the bourgeois officers of the armed forces.
A relatively weak electoral government emerges, but its strength comes from the bayonets on which it will lean to attack the masses, always having a strengthened Capriles at their side, in case this plan fails.
That is why the policy of the reformist left, which defends Maduro against Capriles, is totally cynical, as if Maduro did not come to apply an attack against the masses equal or superior to that of Capriles.
DOES ANYBODY BELIEVE THAT THE AIRCRAFT OF THE ARMED FORCES THAT CAME OUT TODAY ARE TO BOMB CAPRILES’ BUNKER, OR TO BOMB EVERY GOVERNMENT THAT WANTS TO IMPOSE A FAIR INCREASE AND A DEVALUATION TO STEAL THE SALARY IN VENEZUELA? COME ON! THE AIRCRAFT OVERFLYING CARACAS IS TO IMPOSE THAT THE MASSES ARE AT THEIR HOMES. IT IS TO ENSURE THAT THE DESPAIR OF AGGRESSIVE FRACTIONS OF BUSINESS DOES NOT IGNITE THE FIRE AND PASS OUT OF THE BALANCE OF FORCES. AND IT IS A WARNING TO THE MASSES THAT THE GOVERNMENT OF MADURO WILL HAVE THE WHIP TO APPLY THE WORST OF THE ATTACKS AGAINST THEM.
Maduro said: “I have the people (at their homes) and the armed forces, therefore I proclaim myself”. “I have the cannons to shoot at the working class’ head if you try to rise against the attack that I’m about to fulfill”.
If the workers dare to take PDVSA, Sidor, with the anti-strike law they will have the “national, popular and democratic” armed forces with the tanks in the companies, attacking the workers.
Maduro says “I share out the business, because I’m going to crush the masses if they rise”. That is the legitimacy that Maduro has to proclaim himself today. And it’s not precisely the difference of a vote. The bourgeoisie knows very well that it is about what regime and government rules to attack the masses. By now, and only by now, it is the government of Maduro.
So, why is imperialism going to take the risk to a fascist attempted coup now, if the workers’ and the masses revolution are not on the scene? If Maduro is going to apply the same plan of attack against the masses that Capriles. Why are you going to launch a fascist attack or a military coup? That’s science fiction, it’s pure image, it’s giving in to bourgeois charlatans. The Bolivarian bourgeoisie has hours and hours of cheap palaver. The world is full of leftists who never get tired of buying it and selling it as poison to the masses.
At that point, you have a serious confusion, which even no longer correspond with the facts. In every bourgeois reactionary action there are dead and not for that reason there is fascist attempted coup. We must openly fight the counterrevolutionary bourgeois reaction of Capriles, but first of all, if we want to mobilize the masses, we must fight against the cowardice and cynicism of Maduro’s bourgeois faction, which has not called the masses to do any type of action against the supposed “fascism” or “coup”, as characterized by Maduro. If the working class does not break with Maduro and overcomes the limits of the “Bolivarian revolution”, it will never be able to crush Capriles. The fact is that Maduro has the workers locked up in their homes and the workers’ movement under their discipline.
Both fractions are using the masses to discuss their businesses. But the limit is to sustain the regime and conquer the strongest government possible to attack the working class and the exploited.
9- If we take a look at the positions of the entire left of the World Social Forum today and its servants, the renegades of Trotskyism, they seem trapeze artists doing pirouettes in the air in a great circus. For years, they called for 10 million votes for Chavez, as Chirino did with the UNT years ago. They were observers of all the Latin American left to those elections. They went to receive prizes to Havana. They demanded, as the LIT did for years, that Chavez make socialism, creating illusions in the masses that he could do it.
After years, any sensible politician could observe that Chavezism quickly changed sides, after strangulating the revolutionary processes and, agreeing as a direct agent of imperialism, began an attack on the masses on his behalf.
The reformist left tried to juggle. They did a triple somersault on the trapeze. They were balancing on the tightrope... and they called to pompously make a left front for the elections in Venezuela and obtained 3,000 votes with Chirino.
Can these people explain not only why they got 3,000 votes, but why it was Capriles who won hundreds of thousands of workers votes, making the situation in Venezuela even more reactionary? This is the leadership crisis.
Before Chavezism ends up being a lemon squeezed out of imperialism to punish the masses, all the renegades of Trotskyism are already squeezed lemons, very squeezed. Why were the workers who broke with Chavezism today going to join those who gathered 10 million votes for Chavez and those who said that the peaceful way to socialism could be made?
How did Capriles attract these votes? Here the trapeze artist becomes a magician and hides in a dark box. And the act continues, but the masses pay for it.
Capriles, in a cynical and demagogic way, said what the reformist left is silent about, and so this counterrevolutionary oligarch could deceive the masses: “You have never worked, Maduro, you are an idler”, “they come to speak against the bourgeoisie, the richest man in Venezuela is Ramírez (president of PDVSA), the friend of Chavez and Maduro, one of the biggest well-connected in this country. “
Let’s talk clearly. The reformist leftists spent years embellishing the Chavez bourgeoisie and held the largest millionaires in Venezuela. Why is the hungry working class of Venezuela that breaks with Chavismo today going to go with them? they are a worn, almost illegible photocopy of Chavism.
That is the Venezuelan tragedy: the subjection of the working class to its executioners, to the expropriators of its revolution, as Chavez did with the heroic combats of the masses of the Caracazo. Likewise, because of the treachery of the proletariat’s leadership, layers of workers, disillusioned with Chavezism, today went to vote for Capriles, who consider him as the only one who faces him. Then they will speak of the “low level of consciousness of the masses”, of their “crisis of subjectivity”.
10- Let’s tell the truth. Capriles increased its electoral support because the reformist left supported Chavezism in Venezuela and internationally, openly becoming an anti-worker government for years. Strips of workers who broke up with him, went to vote for Capriles, who appeared as the “Bolivarian” who faced him. This is the question that no Chavezist can answer.
That “rich kid” of the Venezuelan oligarchy, who is Capriles, today could channel the vote of sectors of the ruined middle classes, and even of the labor aristocracy and desperate layers of the exploited masses, as we said, because the reformist left was subordinated to Chavez. This was no more than a worn and liliputian photocopy of chavism, it was ridiculous. That’s why they got 3,000 votes. Because Chirino and those who speak of a “left front” in Venezuela are the ones who called to gather 10 million votes to Chavez.
They took all the workers’ struggles to put pressure on the Chavist Labor Ministry to pass judgment on the workers. Not a single award in favor of the workers was taken by the Chavezists in that Ministry of Labor of the capitalists.
They kept, for years, talking about the “anti-imperialist character” of the Chavez government. They never faced Chavez’s surrender to imperialism with the Venezuelan external debt, and concealed that he shared the oil rent with the big imperialist banks.
They never told the ruined middle classes that the working class, taking the banks and expropriating them without payment, was the only one who could give the cheap credit and the tractor to the small peasant and bankrupt merchant.
Stalinists and renegades of Trotskyism were silent that the real help given by Chavez was neither to Cuba nor to Argentina, as has Maduro, the scoundrel, who put all the dollars of the external debt to imperialism in hard cash, that even Andres Perez could not pay.
There are still opportunist currents that want to sell “Venezuelan socialism” with millions of hungry people in that country, with 27% inflation...
If there was fresh money in cheap oil for Cuba it is for it to work; for the transnationals to take the island; so that the luxury hotels of the transnationals do not lack light and the nickel companies can operate, where the children of Castroism, become a new bourgeoisie, are associated with the French transnationals.
With Argentina there were common business in the agroindustry, in shipyards, where the Bolivarian bourgeoisie of the Kirchners and the Chávezs made fabulous business.
That obfuscates Capriles, the “rich child”, because they want those business. That’s why they fight.
The reformist leaders want to make the world proletariat believe that the second Latin American independence was conquered with Chavism. What there is in Venezuela and Latin America are governments of the native bourgeoisies, so lackey of imperialism, that “Mister Bush” today envies Obama for the FTA he has conquered under the banner of UNASUR.
In this the CSR and the FLTI are totally in agreement, and we will surely give this fight in common.
This is the truth. The lackeys of the World Social Forum accused the heroic revolutionary masses of Libya and Syria of being “agents of NATO”. For this reason, they supported the Chavez government of men like Rafael Ramírez in Venezuela (the president of PDVSA and the richest man in that country). That is why they were with Khadafy in Libya and with Assad in Syria, that is, the greatest super-millionaires of the Arab Maghreb and the Middle East, no less lackeys of imperialism and Zionism than all the Arab bourgeoisies.
After they demoralized the masses and attacked them violently, doing the “dirty work”, as Maduro is doing in Venezuela today, imperialism will surely come to keep everything. That’s exactly what imperialism is about, to keep everything, using all its agents.
The native bourgeoisies? The “progressive” generals? They have quickly allied with imperialism, because they are terrified of the mobilized masses, because they will attack the property not only of imperialism but also of theirs.
11- In Venezuela, besides fighting for the expulsion of imperialism, undoubtedly all Marxist policies must openly call for the crisis to be paid by the capitalists, for the fact that imperialism must be expropriated and broken with, we must ignore the ALBA, FTA and MERCOSUR. We have to expropriate the bourgeoisie. This task is not going to be done by Maduro, who is already negotiating and has agreed with Capriles, when together they called to vote for Obama and to respect the property and the imperialist bankers in Venezuela, as established by the Bolivarian Constitution.
As you rightly suggest, we have to fight for true socialism, which is the one that expropriates the capitalists. We believe that against Capriles and Maduro we have to set up a program for the working class to break free, opening the way to set up revolutionary mass organizations to take power.
We, revolutionaries, must affirm that THE MAJORITY OF VENEZUELA IS THE WORKING CLASS, WITH ITS HUGE INDUSTRIAL ARMY OF RESERVE OF UNEMPLOYED, WHICH MUST BE PLACED TO PRODUCE WITH A NATIONAL PUBLIC WORKS PLAN, EXPROPRATING THE BANKERS AND NOT RECOGNIZING THE ILLEGITIMATE EXTERNAL DEBT.
The real majority is not the representative governments of this scam that is the “Bolivarian revolution”. It is not the Bolivarian bourgeoisie, neither Maduro’s nor Capriles’, managers of the board of directors commanded by Obama. The real majority are the workers and the people who are the ones who produce wealth and suffer from hunger in this country. We must regroup the majority of Venezuela, put them on their feet, conquer a BIG NATIONAL CONGRESS OF EMPLOYED AND UNEMPLOYED WORKERS, WITH GRASSROOT DELEGATES, OF PEOPLE, OF POOR PEASANTS, OF SUPPORT COMMITTEES. THAT IS THE MAJORITY OF VENEZUELA.
Capriles threatens with reactionary actions on the streets, and Maduro calls for a government that will attack the masses. Sectors of Chavezism threaten with “workers control”, if the bourgeois action continues to advance. Maduro threatens to “radicalize” his position against the bourgeoisie. Why does not he do it? They know that if they mobilize the masses, they will also revolt in the companies of Maduro, Capriles and the entire Bolivarian bourgeoisie. All of them will attack the masses if they revolt, as yesterday in the Caracazo.
The caste of counterrevolutionary officers of the Venezuelan armed forces are those that were killed yesterday in the Caracazo, and that will repress the people when the latter revolts, with laws and decrees emanating from the Bolivarian parliament.
We have to face the reaction and Capriles! We have to expropriate the bourgeoisie, imperialism and bankers! We must stop the attack of devaluation and scarcity of the life of Maduro and the bourgeois factions that are in power, supported by the bayonets of the armed forces, against the working class! We must stop new counterrevolutionary attacks against the people!
The working class cannot remain tied to any bourgeois fraction, because they are all its executioners. They fight for their business, not for our salary, or for our work. They fight to see who commands the attack to snatch our conquests. Quickly they will agree, and all together will face our struggles.
Enough is enough! Let the crisis be paid by the capitalists ... all the capitalists! We must expropriate imperialism and the bourgeoisie ... the entire bourgeoisie!
We must conquer decent work for all, with a salary that covers the family basket! Neither the bourgeoisie of Capriles nor Maduro will be willing to give us the slightest of concessions without we snatch them from our struggle.
We must occupy all the factories, oil companies and banks of Venezuela! That is the way to impose workers control.
Workers have already fallen for the disputes of these bourgeois factions. We cannot put blood in the service of the bourgeois factions that dispute business. Let’s fight for self-defense committees and workers’ militia! The “Bolivarian” armed forces sooner or later will agree with Obama and Capriles to attack the people. All capitalists attack the workers and the people with their plans of hunger and misery.
Yesterday Chavez was embracing the fascist Uribe to hand over the Colombian resistance, and Obama to hand over the socialist Cuba to imperialism and the worms of Miami. Today they will not hesitate to embrace all together to drown the people in blood, to impose the adjustment plans, inflation, unemployment, which all the bourgeois fractions allied to imperialism against the working class must apply.
The soldiers and the reservists must elect delegates and put their arms and rifles at the service of the majority of Venezuela, those who do not get to eat ten days a month, those who can no longer travel by public transport, those who are consumed by the high cost of living in a country where the oil rent would reach and exceed to buy cheap food and guarantee health and education.
WE MUST BE OBTAINED 10 MILLION VOTES OF WORKERS, OCCUPIED AND UNEMPLOYED, FROM PRICE CONTROL COMMITTEES AND FACTORY COMMITTEES, FROM SECTORS OF THE MIDDLE CLASSES RUINED FROM THE FIELD AND THE CITY, REPRESENTED BY DELEGATES OF ALL THE MASSES IN FIGHT. THESE ARE THE MAJORITY. IT IS THE ONLY POWER THAT DESERVES TO STAND IN VENEZUELA.
THE LIBERATION OF THE WORKERS WILL BE THE TASK OF THE WORKERS THEMSELVES.
12- Maduro denounces Capriles (a total lackey of imperialism, we affirm) who wants to make a “new Libya and Syria” against him... Maduro wants to be like Khadafy and Assad, big shareholders of the imperialist transnationals, as they were and they are, of the Hewlett Packard, the British Petroleum, the Olivetti and the Italian ENI. That is the prize that the Bolivarians have and will have for attacking the masses.
Capriles, like the sheikhs of Saudi Arabia, has nothing to envy in his fortune and in his society with imperialism to the Khadafy of yesterday and assassins of Assad like today.
In this attack against the masses, to no doubt, the Maduro government will have the support of Capriles, Obama and the Bolivarian armed forces.
The task of setting up a revolutionary party in Venezuela and of freeing the revolutionary masses from imperialism is a task of the entire international socialist revolutionary movement. All the treacherous world left has put Chavezism on their shoulders to strangle the socialist revolution in the American continent. It is an international task to defeat the treacherous leaderships that sustain Obama, which lead the masses to defeats and the dead end of the “peaceful way to socialism” like today in Venezuela, in Greece with Syriza, and yesterday in Chile with a blood bath, and that promise “democratic revolutions in peace,” as proclaimed in the Arab Maghreb and the Middle East, while today what is coming is the counterrevolution that massacres, in one of the greatest genocides in history, the masses in Syria, with very hard counterrevolutionary attacks in Egypt and Tunisia, the expropriation of the revolution in Libya and the French imperialist invasion in Mali.
The fourth internationalists must unmask that cynical role played by the Bolivarians who try to appear as anti-imperialists. They pretend to be brave in front of imperialism, with their finger up, saying “May Venezuela be respected”, when they only talk about respecting their business, because they know how to respect imperialism, its business and its interests very well. And they are cared for and respected, taking care of their banks and respecting the external debt, that is, robbing the oppressed nation.
They respect imperialism so much, that they gave Cuba to the worms of Miami, and they support the government of Uribe-Santos, employees of the 5 largest imperialist bases of the American continent in Colombia.
The words are over. Decisive clashes between classes approach. A counterrevolutionary offensive of imperialism has begun at the international level, to divert and crush the proletarian revolution and make the masses take its entire crisis. These resist. Here and there treacherous leaderships siege their battles, betray their struggles.
Imperialism seeks to stabilize a Bolivarian bourgeois government, which applies the plan of imperialism in the region, stabilizing Central America, handing over Cuba and guaranteeing UNASUR as the new NAFTA and attacking the Venezuelan masses. This is a task that Chavezism has already assumed as its own. Meanwhile, a strengthened Capriles awaits his opportunity to manage these businesses.
Capriles’ is the best government to implement the plans of imperialism, due to the reactionary forces he controls. That would be ideal for the Yankees, as long as Maduro is the one who defeats and crushes the masses. That is the truth of Venezuela today. That is why the reactionary officer caste of the “Bolivarian” army has said “first Maduro, then Capriles”.
That is why we, the revolutionary socialists, say: Dissolution of the officer caste! Council of soldiers! Out with imperialism and the OAS, UNASUR and the counterrevolutionary pact of the Chavists with the fascist government of Santos, representative of the Yankee bases in Latin America!
Neither Maduro, who takes power, nor Capriles, who will support him to attack the masses! All will agree, after the oath as president of Maduro, to divide the business and continue handing over Venezuela to imperialism, through the bankers and all the bourgeois factions associated with him.
The power of the majority of Venezuela must be upheld: the oppressed, the unemployed, the starving. We must demand that the UNT and the trade unions break with the bourgeoisie and the Chavez labor ministries. We must coordinate those who fight. We have to arm the workers and the people. So we will face the attack of Maduro today and the counterrevolutionary attempts of Capriles and the armed forces.
Unquestionably, if the masses enter the battle for wages, work, dignity and against hunger, Capriles and Maduro will be in the same class barricade firing against the masses. After all, they are two soldiers of Obama, one of infantry and another of artillery, but of the same army.
The revolutionary socialists would not hesitate a minute, before any fascist, Bonapartist or attempted coup, which would not come only to get Maduro out but to crush the masses in a counterrevolutionary way, to lead the fight for the military defeat of that counterrevolutionary coup. But, nothing more distant for the masses than to arm themselves today against a nonexistent coup, and to be disarmed before the coup and the brutal attack that Maduro prepares, sustained by Capriles and the murderous officer caste of the Venezuelan army.
We do not march with the planes that fly over Caracas, nor with the helicopter gunships of the Venezuelan armed forces. They do not come to attack Capriles. They come to defend it, like the whole Venezuelan bourgeoisie, against the irruption of the working class against hunger and misery as in the Caracazo.
13- The bourgeoisie, in its clash for business that has opened a huge political crisis, has been located on a ledge. Chavez is no longer there. There is no legitimate government. There is no government with legitimacy to distribute business. The conscience and anti-imperialist sentiment of the Venezuelan masses is intact. Their hunger and their misery that push them to fight are already here.
A process of rupture with Chavezism has begun. We cannot leave it in the hands of the oligarchic and reactionary Capriles, who brings only demagogy and palaver to dispute the power and business of the Chavist bourgeoisie. Much less can the working class remain subject to Maduro, who is the one who comes to apply all the attacks of imperialism today.
Calling up the power organizations of the working class and the exploited, to take into their hands the struggle for socialism, which is to expropriate the bourgeoisie, break with imperialism and unite with the Latin American and world working class, is a task that has been left in the hands of the only revolutionary class of society, which is the working class and its brothers from the impoverished people of the city and the countryside, and of the entire American continent.
The allies of the Venezuelan working class are not in the “progressive generals” murderers of the Caracazo, nor in the “anti-imperialist” bourgeoisie of Maduro. Their allies are the workers and peasants of the continent, who fight against the Bolivarian governments as they do against the governments of the NAFTA.
Its allies are the working class of the United States and the Cuban working class, which today sees losing its revolutionary conquests with 500,000 dismissed on the island. His allies were neither Khadafy nor the assassin Assad, who massacred the masses of North Africa and the Middle East on behalf of imperialism and supported the counterrevolutionary forces of Zionism, supported by Maduro’s friends, the greatest assassins and security guards of transnational corporations in China, the Communist Party of Chinese mandarins.
14- Imperialism knows what it is about. Yesterday it saw Chavez surrender in the military coup before the bishop of Caracas, like a coward, while the masses took to the streets against the coup, restoring Chavez in power. This is how the Bolivarian bourgeoisie paid the masses: with greater devotion to imperialism and greater misery.
The coup leaders are on the street, released and amnestied by Chavez. The bourgeoisie enjoys very good health in the “socialism of the 21st century”. Capriles emerges from the bowels of that regime and that same bourgeoisie, coward and despicable with imperialism, but brave to repress the masses.
The Bolivarian bourgeoisie disputes its business at the edge of the cornice. The underwater rocks of the global economic crisis have hit the hull of the Bolivarian vessel. The exploited classes of Venezuela, which are crammed in the lower staterooms of the ship, are already covered up to the head by hunger, inflation and the high cost of living.
Neither Maduro nor Capriles will save the masses. They will make them pay the whole crisis.
The World Social Forum was held in Tunis, weeks ago. There, a tribute was paid to Chavez. Those who hold the assassin Assad massacred the masses of Syria, on behalf of imperialism, came together. Those who went to support the bourgeois government of Tunisia, so that the masses do not do justice with their pickets and organizations fighting against the fascist Salafist bands that attack the workers’ organizations at large.
They came together in Tunisia to support the murderous generals of the Egyptian army, who are already massacring more workers and peasants in that country than Mubarak massacred. There they came together to proclaim, after saving the bourgeoisie and imperialism of a worldwide revolutionary rise of masses, to tell the latter to distribute the wealth, and to make the masses believe that he will do it.
Do not give in to the siren songs. Maduro does not come to “distribute the wealth” of the super-rich Bolivarian bourgeoisie. It comes to take out the last juice of blood to the Venezuelan working class.
Let’s talk clearly. The way to defeat and crush Capriles is to reorganize the ranks of the working class, to break the discipline with Maduro and defend himself against his harsh attacks.
It is time for the working class to weigh decisively in national political life, and to do it again, as it did yesterday in the Caracazo, to bring order to the disorder of the famine and the bourgeois plunder and imperialism in Venezuela.
We insist, in each factory and establishment, the power of the exploited must be upheld. A company committee must be set up in each factory and establishment. A national congress of the UNT, with one base delegate per 100 workers from all over Venezuela. It is necessary to put in standing in each neighborhood of the exploited a committee of unemployed to demand decent work for all; supply boards and price control in each neighborhood. A committee of soldiers in each barracks.
The power of the exploited must be upheld. They fight for business; our fight is for bread. The imperialist bankers must be expropriated without payment. For that, we have to break with the bourgeoisie. Neither Maduro, nor Capriles. We must uphold and centralize the power of the exploited.
Yes, it is time for the hungry of the Caracazo to put order in Venezuela. The Bolivarian revolution imposed the order of the exploiters to guarantee their profits and continue submitting the people with crumbs and alms.
The struggle for socialism is the struggle for a socialist Venezuela, without generals or capitalists.
15- The Bolivarian constitution is a scam, which gives freedom to Capriles and Obama, to bankers and plunderers of Venezuela, and capitalist parasites to amass fortunes by exploiting the working class, administering the state and taxes of the people, while guaranteeing all payers of the external debt to the Yankees.
The Bolivarian constitution has not given the working class the freedom or the right to have a decent wage, a decent job, or to educate and live with dignity. The exploiters will not surrender their property, their wealth and the larceny of the Venezuelan nation by “peaceful means” and winning elections.
There is the result: the most reactionary forces of Venezuela emerging from the bowels of Chavezism, with that oligarch of Capriles, and the murderous officers of the Caracazo.
The world reformist left must stop lying. The true Bolivarian homeland is the murderous officers, coup plotters and oligarchs like Capriles, associated with the new Chavist millionaire bourgeoisie.
We have to break with them. Thus the working class will avoid new devaluatory attacks to the salary and more misery, creating independent organizations of its power, to face all counterrevolutionary attempt of the bourgeoisie and the imperialism to impose its hunger plans.
We, the Trotskyists of the Fourth International, can talk. Because we tirelessly raise the Marxist apothegm of the one who gives even the fingernail of a little finger to a bourgeois government refuses to fight later for its overthrow. And he will cry because then a Bonapartist or fascist coup will overthrow him.
The Latin American and world left has given it more than the fingernail. It has given its soul and body to Chavez and the WSF to strangle the socialist revolution in Venezuela and internationally.
Stalinism, the renegades of Trotskyism and the forces grouped under the banner of the World Social Forum have proclaimed that “a new Cuba that expropriates the bourgeoisie is no longer possible in Latin America.” That of Chavez, Maduro... with Capriles and the bankers. Here it has become clear that this is the “socialism of the 21st century”, a new verse of “the peaceful way to socialism” that in the ‘70s in Chile ended with a bloodbath.
The Trotskyists and the Fourth International fought in the trenches against Obama and the Bolivarian bourgeoisies that defend the property of the capitalists, the regional markets of the transnationals and the plundering of all the oppressed peoples of the continent.
With the Fourth International, which we must refound, we fight to set up a “sensitive nerve” from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, which when touched on any of its points, can vibrate and react at the same time. That is, a “sensitive nerve” that unites, in a great struggle against the exploiters, all the exploited of the continent.
Against UNASUR, MERCOSUR, ALBA, we fight for the Socialist United States of North, Central and South America.
16- In this Venezuelan political crisis there is already the verdict of the discussion on the issue of Chavezism that has been debated hard within the world working class. The political crisis of bourgeois rule today in Venezuela has been uncovered by the situation of enormous volatility and weakness of the regime of domination before the death of Chavez. It has already become clear that the great guarantor of bourgeois and imperialist stability in Venezuela was given by his government. It has been demonstrated that the best government that imperialism possessed to implement the attack, which is already under way, against the Venezuelan working class, was that of Chavez, with 57% of the votes, which emerged as a strong and legitimate government for attacking the masses, while Capriles remained as a strong bourgeois opposition forward, as an alternative.
The two-party system has entered into crisis and forced the armed forces to define the transition. It is Maduro who attacks the masses, and Capriles, with his enormous power and legitimacy, is preparing to take the post or to set up a government of national unity when the class struggle so requires.
The sweet wrap, the veil of the Bolivarian revolution has fallen. Defending this government of Maduro are the airplanes of the armed forces of the massacre of the Caracazo and coup of 2002. What military coup or fascist putsch are they talking about, when everyone’s policy is “beware that the masses break in”? The official caste has emerged as the true arbiter of the bourgeois fractions that are fighting for business in Venezuela.
The Bolivarian regime has shown its true Bonapartist face, taking Chavez’s corpse to the barracks, saying that the armed forces are the guarantors of everyone’s business. That is what the bourgeois state is about: a band of armed men who defend the owners of the means of production.
The Bolivarians have already imposed anti-strike laws. According to them, it is a terrorist who strikes a state company. They are going to be the armed forces of Cabello, which did not touch Capriles or the gorilla bourgeoisie, which will attack without hesitation and militarize the workers’ strikes.
The Fourth International needs to stand up. It will be the only possibility that a program of the working class, for its liberation, will be in the battles of the world proletariat.
The proletariat will conquer the best conditions then to face fascism, which will be nourished by the imperialist bourgeois forces that support the Bolivarian constitution, which will emerge in the near future, if today it is able to put its power organisms on its feet to face the attack of hunger, misery and surrender that will come from the government of Maduro, supported by the military and with the agreement of Capriles and his reactionary forces.
Comrades, if we had the characterization of you that we are facing a fascist coup, we would have a program in political logic like the one you are holding today. Yesterday we criticized the definition that Chavez had started an anti-imperialist struggle, when he came with the army generals to expropriate the anti-imperialist struggle of the Caracazo.
Today, our debate is focused on the fact that you see imperialism organizing a fascist coup against a bourgeois nationalist government like Maduro, which does not defend itself and refuses to arm the masses. That is not the reality today. Perhaps this contribution will serve as a tool of struggle or to criticize our position if we are wrong.
As always, the debate among Marxists clarifies and educates the world proletariat. We have no question of prestige. If we are wrong and you convince us, we will say it.
April 24th, 2013
The fight against
Comrades of El Topo Obrero
We have already read RG’s note sent as a first quick response to the letter on April 17.
Your letter was quickly forwarded to all the FLTI groups. From now on we will be waiting for your document to deepen the debate, beyond the positions taken by the FLTI that is devoted to the tasks of preparation of the IV Congress of our current.
The Venezuelan question, as well as those of Syria and Cuba, as well as the Greek events, are essential acid tests in the preparation of the Congress. These are points where the reaction and the world imperialist counter-revolution have been concentrated for, supported in the treacherous leaderships, dispersing the revolutionary processes initiated against the capitalist crack from 2008. In China, the friends of Maduro and Chavezism, the Communist Party of Chinese entrepreneurs, intimate partners of Maduro and Chavez, are slaughtering tens of thousands of workers and peasants. More than 250,000 worker uprisings and revolts have been crushed to blood and fire by the Chinese “Chavezites,” friends of Castro and the MNCs in the Pacific.
The Venezuelan question must be approached from an internationalist vision of revolution and counterrevolution
This controversy and brotherly discussion, must not lead us to forget that the 2013 WSF has just been accomplished, where more than 5,000 organizations around the world paid homage to Chavez, while supporting one of the cruelest genocides in modern history, in Syria, by the notorious killer Al-Assad and his men.
The latter is now aided by Ahmadinejad from Iran and more than 30,000 paid mercenaries of the Iranian Republican Guard, who have become into the core of Al-Assad’s murderous army.
We need to place this reflection and the events in Venezuela from this point of view, since we are discussing the so called “socialism of the 21st century”, “market socialism”... which is the capitalist restoration in Cuba, the abortion of the road to socialist revolution a.k.a. “peaceful road to socialism” as trumpeted the world left all across Greece with Syriza as their herald.
To situate us in this debate from an international point of view for defining the question of Chavezism and events in our country we must start understanding that we are facing anti-worker, bourgeois forces and treacherous leaderships determined that there must never be a new Cuba in the Americas. These are part of an international process of concentration of counter-revolutionary forces, which have regrouped to break up the revolutionary struggles of the world proletariat.
We are facing the biggest enemies of the Socialist Revolution. Not to mention that they are partisans of Obama… or does anyone believe that Castro and Chavezism are for organizing wide layers of the black and Chicano working class which are breaking with Obama, in order to fight for the socialist revolution in the United States? Much less in the United States! That’s why the Castro Bross and the Chavezes supported Obama there.
In the United States 45 millions of workers, most of them unemployed and helpless live upon U$ S 3 per day given them by Obama’s charity.
We could say that they are Venezuelan Chavezite “Missions” in the United States.
Obama boasts that he saves the poor from starving through those alms… then why don’t he and the Wall Street bankers who earn fortunes from looting the oppressed peoples, live with 120 dollars per month in the United States as their friends Castro and Chavez propose to the American working class?
At the WSF in Tunisia met weeks ago, all treacherous leaderships were concentrated to disperse and encircle one after the other all the revolutionary processes which, like in Southern and Northern Africa, in Latin America and Europe threatened to open a new revolutionary period worldwide. For now, by concentrating their forces they have saved Wall Street and its 1% of parasites in bankruptcy and dispersed the revolutionary processes.
Any debate on the developments in Venezuela, which does not see how these international conditions refract in our country, will not be able to achieve an accurate diagnosis of the situation and much less conquer the conditions for the victory of the proletariat.
On the character of the current political crisis in Venezuela and the program of the revolutionaries
In fact, in Venezuela we are seeing one of the largest expropriations of the anti-imperialist struggle of the masses in the Americas. Chavezism and Castroism, with their “Bolivarian revolution” have exported the strangulation of the revolutionary processes in our Americas. Meanwhile, they legitimate from the WSF the most deadly counter-revolutionary action of this century which is the massacre in Syria.
We believe that rescuing -as the FLTI has done- the fact that the true anti-imperialist fight was that of the masses in the Caracazo in 1989 and the struggles that followed it, while Chavezism is the abortion of this combat, is a huge contribution to any revolutionary workers current which really fights for the seizure of power by the proletariat.
We have carefully read RG’s quick note. It lays black-on-white differences that really exist. It is in our disposition to contribute to the debate.
This is why we want to make some clarifications on that note, at a first glance:
In your note you consider that “in (the FLTI’s) letter-document on the national situation of Venezuela you (the FLTI, N. Ed) state that we (El Topo Obrero, N. Ed) consider that the bourgeois opposition to Chavezism was developing a coup d’etat. Perhaps I’m wrong, but that’s not what we say because we do not believe it.”
We will try to answer this question. It was you who in your statement of April 17, posed that Capriles and Lopez are who direct the fascist gangs. Not only the MUD.
What the FLTI did first of all is explaining to you a problem of method in Marxism, which is as follows: there is no doubt that Capriles has counter-revolutionary forces. But not every counter-revolutionary force is fascist. Fascism is a precise definition in Marxism in relation to a regime of bourgeois domination in a particular process in the class struggle.
The armed forces and the Chavezite military guard have repressed at close range workers and recently murdered a peasant leader. There’s also a focus of counter-revolutionary forces against the working class.
The Popular Front, as we saw it in Spain, did not cease killing in the rear the best of the working class in the Spanish revolution.
The counter-revolutionary forces of Capriles and some pro-fascist bands from his social base did not have the objective of staging a coup d’état or promoting a fascist putsch… at least for now. It wasn’t Capriles policy or that of the upper middle class in Venezuela. What was in question is whether or not they acknowledged the almost-draw in the election, as a triumph of Maduro as the National Electoral Council had reported.
What is this question of method that the FLTI raised in its document? It is to determine if there is a common definition with you about what is fascism, i.e. the last bourgeois Government prior to the proletarian revolution. That is, the last alternative of the bourgeoisie, playing for “all or nothing” to prevent the triumph of the workers revolution. It is essential to define then if this is correct or not.
Secondly, for us, we anticipate, what there was in Venezuela at the end of the elections was a political crisis that was closed by an agreement Capriles-Maduro-Obama because their panic was precisely that in response to the fascist gangs triggering on the edge of the mobilization summoned by Capriles against Maduro, the masses could react not only squashing the fascists but also occupying the center of national politics. That quickly pushed the agreement Capriles-Obama-Maduro.
The outcome of the election is the worst thing that could have happened to the Bolivarian regime.
It did not get a strong Government, like that of Chavez, and meanwhile a Government much more weakened arises (Maduro’s), just when an ambitious bourgeois opposition appears avid of new business, one that stayed out of them to a large extent or had to share them with the Bolivarian bourgeoisie which amassed fortunes during these years.
All the facts realize this and your first statement does not. Your statement raises a scenario of a clash of bourgeois camps, from the beginning to the end, as we will see below. Not only you do not pronounce against the real political crisis, i.e. the assumption of Maduro or not, but just denounce and call to have a program of action around the attack of fascist gangs.
It does not denounce or fight against the agreement which was already emerging at the start of the political crisis between Capriles-Maduro-Obama.
Undoubtedly, as the FLTI insists in its document, we Marxists advocate in the case of a coup d’etat, a higher regime (a “democratic bourgeois” one) against a lower regime (either “Bonapartism” or “fascism”). But as Trotsky said in Spain we defend “democracy” with the method of the proletarian revolution. But this was not what happened in Venezuela coup unlike when in the military coup the etat on 11A, as it is acknowledged in the same letter by RG.
We didn’t invent anything on your positions. You are those who pose in your statement that Capriles and Lopez fascist gangs are killing people as in the military coup on 11A. You said that.
Every reader, when reading your letter would say “there is a fascist coup led by Capriles, who is killing people as in the 2002 coup for Madero not to take charge of the presidency”. How do you call this you yourself wrote? This did not happen in Venezuela in this political crisis. Much less it was Capriles’ plan to organize a fascist putsch to ignore the outcome of the election.
The MUD has fascist bands; well, it is essential to crush them before, during and after their actions on the events of the Venezuelan political crisis, with the worker militias before those fascist bands are developed. The worker militia is indispensable and the workers should arm themselves with the weapons of the fascists, among other means, to defend themselves, as you raise in your document also against the Chavezite National Guard, against the Bolivarian police of Tarek which left two killed workers, of Petrocasa and the vicious repression suffered by workers of Sanitarios Maracay and Sidor, among others.
Now, you continue asking about where we got the idea that you said a coup d’Etat was being developed. You are actually saying something more than that. You say “Capriles and Leopoldo López’s fascist gangs attack and murder as on the 11A and they are merely threatened by lip service or forgiven their aggression” (our bolds).
You are describing an attempt of fascist putsch directed by Capriles, the MUD and its fascist gangs, so Maduro did not assume and that it would have begun to attack and murder as in the military coup against Chavez, the 11A. That’s what you say there.
The facts show that this was not true.
As we will see later your entire program in the declaration of April 17 is based on a united front tactic to confront fascism. For this reason, the FLTI said that yours was an error of characterization which had programmatic implications.
The key question posed to you by the FLTI is that the central policy of the bosses and imperialism was backing Maduro, while strengthening Capriles, imposing a factual (and also “legal”) pact under the counter to prevent the deepening of the gaps in the heights and the masses’ taking advantage of it.
So the central denounce should have been: down with the agreement of Maduro and Capriles under the direction of Obama and with the guarantee of the caste of officers of the Bolivarian army that showed their teeth to ensure that the masses do not intervene! (and that their fascist dogs returned to the corral because they could ignite the fuse of a new Caracazo!)
The fight against the Covenant Capriles-Maduro is what guaranteed creating the conditions to crush the fascist bands of the MUD... and stop the offensive, increasingly more aggressive against the workers, of the Chavezite National Guard. Maduro called the masses to stay quiet at home AND IT WAS THUS BECAUSE HE WAS NEGOTIATING WITH CAPRILES.
That’s why the fight was and continues being: we must expropriate both the bourgeoisie and imperialism, which finance preventively fascist gangs but centrally back Maduro, prepare Capriles to attack the masses, with the bayonets of the generals, and of course with the blessing of Obama and the Vatican!
Maduro and Capriles, both candidates of Obama, will make a pact against the working class and the masses. The Bolivarian bourgeoisie still guarantees the counterrevolutionary pacts with imperialism and the governments of the FTA
Please read your statement of April 17 and you will see that the section of the program that emerges from the title “only working people will save the people” is articulated around the labor front tactics to crush fascism and not around defeating the Pact Capriles-Maduro-Obama sustained in the caste of officers of the most millionaire army of Venezuela.
In that moment and still at the present time the central institution that attacks the masses is the agreement Maduro-Capriles. This is an agreement based on setting up a kind of bipartisanship Bolivarian-style, to prevent the bourgeois opposition having to perform a military coup before coming to power.
This is an agreement of equal size and scope of the agreement Castro-Maduro to give in Cuba to imperialism; of the same caliber of the agreement (of Chavez, T. N. ) with Santos and Uribe to deliver the Colombian resistance. AND THOSE ARE COUNTER-REVOLUTIONARY AGREEMENTS IN WHICH THE WORKERS PUT THE BLOOD AND THE CAPITALISTS GATHER THEIR PROFITS.
We insist, in relation to this you do not respond in your statement, your policy is “everybody against fascism”, and from there you attack Maduro that contains the masses and even attacks them. It is a principled program, but it didn’t correspond to the reality of the political crisis.
This Bolivarian policy imperialism does not want to remove for now, since it guaranteed him to expropriate the revolutionary processes in key countries of the Americas.
The masses already defeated even a couple of putschist adventures in Venezuela in 2002-2003. This fight was part of a revolutionary offensive in Ecuador, Argentina, Bolivia, etc.
Today, all Governments of the FTA and the Bolivarian ones are together in UNASUR -for now and just for now, as such is the imperialist policy.
If US imperialism ends absorbing Cuba, if Morales and the Kirchner and the Capriles-Maduro Pact are able to defeat the Latin American working class, if Stalinism, the Bolivarians and the Renegades of Trotskyism continue subduing the American working class to Obama as they have done up to now, the sable rattling of the generals will regain stage, after the imperialist using of these native bourgeoisie’s governments like squeezed lemons.
This is because imperialism, sooner rather than later, will want to stay with the entire businesses here.
At any point in your document, we again insist, you say that Maduro will agree with Capriles, because that is the policy of imperialism. But that is what happened.
The actions of Capriles and the semi-fascist or vigilante forces that cover under his wing, had the aim of ensuring that Maduro would be arising as weak as possible. Capriles cancelled rapidly all reactionary mobilizations in the streets, so that Maduro could assume the most strongly necessary to attack the people and download all the global crisis hitting Venezuela on the shoulders of the masses.
That’s why we answered the following:
“Maduro represents a bourgeois nationalism that can no longer be. Capriles is the direct representative of the imperialist banksters, which do not want to stay out of the business in the coming years, and has taken the banner of the Bolivarian revolution to succeed. We do not see imperialism putting its stakes, for now, to a fascist attempt. It would be a suicidal policy, because it would be about to provoke a strong response from the masses, including a rupture of Maduro’s base with the Bolivarian bourgeoisie, which would go out to the streets, we insist, despite and against the Chavezist bourgeoisie. It would accelerate the rupture of the masses with Maduro. It would be like the bourgeoisie playing its agents all at a time, in a moment when it needs them to attack the masses. It would mean removing Capriles from his role of “democratic opposition” of the Bolivarian Constitution, and putting him as a fascist agent. That is an error of appreciation.”
Now, are you in accordance with this or not? Because this is what actually happened, and not what you posed in your letter when the political crisis opened and Capriles disavowed, for a moment, the outcome of the election. There were not so many alternatives, either a fascist putsch or coup d ‘ état materialized or it was necessary to fight against Maduro-Capriles’ agreement.
You talk about fascist bands... What about the caste of officers of the Bolivarian army that is which actually tipped the scales in favor of Maduro? The truth is that you did not it in your document of April 17.
And Maduro… had he to assume or not? In your document you do not set position in this regard, when that issue was discussed everywhere in Venezuela. We insist, in our view, there was a clash between two factions of the bourgeoisie which are dispute which of them is going to attack the most the masses in the midst of the economic crisis that Venezuela is in and who will handle the Bolivarian Republic business at the next stage.
In the middle of the political crisis and denouncing the oncoming pact the FLTI stated in its program:
“THE VAST MAJORITY OF VENEZUELA- the revolutionaries must affirm- WE ARE THE WORKING CLASS WITH THEIR HUGE RESERVE INDUSTRIAL ARMY OF UNEMPLOYED WORKERS WHO MUST BE PLACED TO PRODUCE BY A PLAN OF NATIONAL PUBLIC WORKS EXPROPRIATING THE BANKERS AND DISREGARDING THE ILLEGITIMATE FOREIGN DEBT.
The true majority are not those governments that are representative of that fake “bolivarian revolution”. The majority isn’t the Bolivarian bourgeoisie, or Maduro, or Capriles, all of them agents of the board commanded by Obama. The true majority are the workers and people that produce the wealth and suffer hunger in that country. It is necessary to group the majority of Venezuela, to raise them up, to conquer A GREAT NATIONAL CONGRESS OF EMPLOYED AND UNEMPLOYED WORKERS WITH RANK AND FILE DELEGATES, INHABITANTS, POOR PEASANTS, SUPPLY COMMITTEES. THAT’S THE MAJORITY OF VENEZUELA.”
The statement of the FLTI says nothing about not to confront the counterrevolutionary gangs of MUD with worker militias. But the FLTI articulates the program around the fight against the agreement-pact Capriles-Maduro, sustained by the Bolivarian armed forces and Obama.
After affirming that all of them will attack the rebelled masses like in the Caracazo, the FLTI calls for fighting saying the following:
“Confront the reaction and Capriles! Expropriate the bourgeoisie, imperialism and bankers! Stop the attack of devaluation and high cost of living of Maduro and the bourgeois factions in power sustained by the armed forces’ bayonets against the working class! Stop the new counterrevolutionary attacks against the people!
The working class can no longer be tied to any bourgeois faction because all of them are their executioners. They fight each other for their business not for our salaries, not for our jobs. They fight each other to resolve who command the attack to snatch our gains. Quickly they will agree and altogether will confront our struggles.”
Then, the FLTI takes the threat launched by sectors of Chavezism calling on masses to apply the workers’ control on the bourgeoisie and denouncing the murder of workers on the part of the counterrevolutionary gangs (excuse us, but we include the quote to avoid confusions). Of course, it is not the same program in comparison with yours that is based on a tactic of worker united front against fascism commanded by Capriles and López. The FLTI affirmed:
“Occupy all the factories, oil companies, and Banks in Venezuela! That´s the road to impose the worker control.
Workers already died due to these disputes between such bourgeois factions. We cannot put our blood at the service of the bourgeois factions disputing the business. For self-defense committees and worker militias! The “Bolivarian” Armed Forces sooner or later will agree a pact with Obama and Capriles to attack the people. All the capitalists must attack workers and people by their plans of hunger and misery.”
It draws the attention the lack of it in your document since it doesn’t state that the working class cannot put their body, blood and life to defend the Bolivarian bourgeoisie and their business. It is also a huge tragedy, workers dying under the counterrevolutionary mobs defending Maduro and the biggest millionaires of Venezuela. It must be said!
Facing this open political crisis there appears two different programs, for us, you are mistaken and got impressed before a fact of reality and lost a view of the whole events and did not adjust the program correctly. The collaboration to you of the FLTI is about it.
It is why because you have a national view as regards Chavezism and don’t see the necessary role they still play to sustain the imperialism’s interests in Latin America, sell out Cuba, legitimate the action of Obama in the left-wing of the US working class and by their “anti-imperialist authority” to sustain the counterrevolutionary actions of Al Assad in Syria. Thus, even in the moments of “major confrontation” between Capriles and Maduro that will not last more than a day, the FLTI was able to see they were going to make an agreement.
Chavezism is still necessary in Venezuela and at continental level. They like castrism and the Iranian bourgeoisie are together with Russia and China, the guarantors of the bloc, the fence of the Syrian bloodstained by the killer Al Assad. For this, Maduro asked and demanded that in spite of having only one vote of difference in favour, he will assume. The forces of Chavezism are based on the counterrevolutionary role they play strangling the proletarian revolution from the WSF, to strangle the international socialist revolution. On that question they are masters, they learnt how to expropriate the Caracazo sustained by the renegades of Trotskyism and Stalinism…for that reason, “only by a vote of difference in favour” he keeps the control of the Venezuelan government.
As we have already seen above, our document is to state that such clash, such political crisis was straight to an agreement at the heights for masses not to rise up.
Are Capriles and Maduro the same? As it is stated in your last concern posed. Who studies the document of the FLTI will see it is not stated that we must say Capriles to put under control the MUD. We have been already explicit by quoting the document of the FLTI to prove that’s not the case.
What the FLTI does affirm -and from the LCT we have agreement- is that to build the worker militia it is necessary to break with Maduro who prevents fighting and he continues concentrating the government of Venezuela and administering the power and business of all the bourgeoisie.
For Lenin the bourgeois government is a chief board of all the ruling classes and who concentrates the attack to strike against masses and impose the worst hunger and miserable plans. Maduro never abandoned the command of the bourgeois government since Chavez death, before and during and after the elections.
It is necessary to break with the bourgeoisie. Even, the tactic of worker united front is about it for every responsible Marxist to confront seriously fascism, even incipient in Venezuela after the defeat imposed on the military coup in 2002.
We insist on it, Maduro and Capriles are the same as long as both of them recognize the Bolivarian Constitution. They are the same as long as whoever assumes will apply the same attack over masses under the command of the imperialism, as long as all of them will pay imperialism for the foreign debt. The are the same as long as they look the other way, arm or support the Al Assad’s massacre in Syria; as long as both support the imperialist pillage in Latin America and hug together with the fascist government of Uribe-Santos; as long as both are in agreement to keep the CELAC and UNASUR, a den of thieves, of Obama’s lackeys; as long as they both called masses to vote for Obama.
Are they identical? No. while Capriles will apply it by leaning himself on the middle class, with the labour aristocracy and some lumpen sector throwing it against the masses. Chavezism is carrying out it and will apply it by manipulating masses and even openly attacking their own social base. Unless there is anyone who believes that Chavezism will surpass the world economic crisis already settled in Venezuela by touching the interests of the big bourgeoisie and imperialism.
Thus, we affirm that the bourgeoisie had a great lost with Chavez since he was the most legitimized to apply such attack against workers.
In the previous polemic on the death of Chavez, a reflection came out on your document on this question. In such document you stated that Chavez started during a period the anti imperialist fight of the Venezuelan masses. Then, you told orally to the FLTI that it had been an involuntary mistake in your document. Justly, we reminded you that masses were who gave the anti-imperialist fight in the Caracazo leaving their dead in the struggle against the IMF and then, began a hard combat of self-organization in 1996/7 expropriated by Chavezism. It was in that way to prevent the initiated fight in the Caracazo from not getting combined with the taking of power on the part of the proletariat, only possibility the oppressed peoples’ anti imperialist demands can be solved.
In that way we have defined, we feel it was in common, that Chavezism was the abortion of the antiimperialist fight of masses because it was who closed the road to the socialist revolution. On it we will be in agreement, justly for that reason, the “Socialism of the 21C” is a vile lie and bourgeois demagoguery as it was Perón who spoke about National Socialism or as it was the case of Al Assad speaking about the Socialist Republic of Syria.
Did the so-called “Missions” of Chavezism give progress to the exploited masses? The Trotskyists affirm that they are alms that the bourgeois state was forced to give up to prevent the advance of the proletarian revolution and to be able to nationalize the workers’ organizations
On the question of the “Missions”, we want to pronounce on it since we don’t agree with the statement of RG.
You affirm: “The Missions have contributed to, despite the fact that vast sectors of the class have the collective agreement frozen, cause a substantial improvement not only in the quality of life of the poorest layers of our people and other not so impoverished but also it has improved the family income increasing the level of family income that 15 years ago hardly was enough to eat…Perrarina (food for dogs TN) in some cases.”
Against this position you pose, we affirm the following:
The Missions are the Institutions of alms that the bourgeois State was obliged to give to prevent the road to the proletariat’s revolution at the expense of state-zing and corrupting all the mass organizations for them not to be independent from the bourgeois State and all his institutions. In any case, the victory is not the “Missions” of the bourgeois State and the PSUV but the partial conquests got by the exploited as a sub-product of great revolutionary fights.
We have studied that in Argentina, for example, peronism say they gave the 8 hours labour shift, the paid holidays and the Christmas bonus to the working class about the middle of the ‘40s. It is a bourgeois fake ( To compare what the peronist bourgeoisie was obliged to give masses as conquests with the miserable alms Chavezism gives, it would make any bourgeois peronist blush; any bourgeois peronist that surely we could meet in the streets of Caracas doing profitable business with the bolivarians). Those are the partial conquests the Argentine working class almost already lost in a vast majority for not taking power and that the bourgeoisie was obliged to give due to the great working class’ struggles.
For the petty-bourgeois politicians it would seem the Argentinean working class was on holidays from the ‘30s to ’45. When in reality, it was one of the periods of revolutionary upheaval and huge struggles of the working class with which they conquered the CGT, the unions for branches, etc.
Here you are saying that the partial concessions and alms of Chavezism are a product of a charitable bourgeoisie who massacred more than 2000 workers during the most important revolutionary and anti-imperialist upheaval in Latin America at the end of the ‘80s, that is, the Caracazo.
The “Missions” are a source of control of the bourgeois State on the mass movement. With them they make pass the ultra-partial conquests the bourgeois State was obliged to give as alms of a kind and paternalistic bourgeoisie.
With them, the political cadres of the PSUV get rich as middlemen, they are who go to every demonstration and even applaud the bird of Maduro…it is bourgeois alms that submit the most exploited masses to the State.
They are institutions of the bourgeois State.
There are “Missions” that are as a kind of internal NGOs, of the health, food, literacy, socialist culture, that is, many “Missions” whose cost doesn’t mean more than the 5% in subsidies of the Venezuelan oil income. To say that it was useful for the starving and deprived masses of Venezuela is minimally to embellish the super profits and millionaire theft of the Bolivarian bourgeoisies and the plundering of the IMF. Moreover, the salary of the workers of the “Missions” who are not chavist cadres, as medical staff and nurse in doctor’s offices dealing with casual patients is a misery. Besides, the big business of health is made with the big clinics and private health insurance companies putting state workers of Venezuela. It is not fair for the Cuban working class to embellish these “Missions” either.
The “Cuban doctors” of that Missions of course, are very-well paid, the castro proto-bourgeoisie receives huge commissions for moving their health system totally corroded to the ALBA’s countries. Think about it: there are 500.000 dismissed Cuban workers while with their “medical Missions” in the ALBA countries the Cuban proto-bourgeoisie shares out the budgets of the States in association with the Bolivarian bourgeoisies.
Let’s think together on the tragedy of the revolution in Centro America and the Caribbean. 500.000 Cuban workers have been dismissed or placed as casual workers selling bouillon cubes in streets of La Habana or cutting hair at their home door. Those are the Castroist “Missions” to keep under control the Cuban unemployed workers dismissed like dogs by the Stalinist scourge transformed into new bourgeoisie.
For workers and the people there are doctor´s offices almost empty in the neighborhoods with a doctor and a stethoscope and the high quality health is for the Capriles’ people. You and we know it.
105.000 billion in concept of external debt have been paid to imperialism, it is more than enough money for decent work for all, high quality education and health services, public works plan and high quality housing for all the exploited people. Let’s not even talk about paying a progressive tax on large fortunes of the Bolivarian bourgeoisie that could pay education to a university graduate career to all illiterate people that a “Missions” hardly teaches to read and write. This is what a Marxist has to tell the masses.
What Comrade RG has written undoubtedly has been made in a rush, we would like him to think it again.
Even if you believe what you affirm in your appointment, you should say that with the rampant annual inflation of 27-30% and recurring devaluations, these gains are lost and the cost of living becomes unbearable and shortages chronic. When we saw the note you’ve written it looks like the exploited masses have solved the problem of poverty in Venezuela and that they are not intended to be the same or worse than before. For not only the salary is frozen but also grants, indeed, are not paid anymore, as you have denounced.
Otherwise, you are stating that there may be perennial gains in the framework of capitalism, and not that the whole conquest, even the slightest is lost if the working class does not take power. That is what is happening and is going to go much deeper with the global economic crisis, which has hit, like submarine rocks, the hull of Bolivarian ship.
Chavez was not the one who graciously gave concessions to the masses to “raise their standard of living” with his “Missions”. In any case, these alms, which are not decent and are a million miles away from the needs of the masses, are a byproduct of the revolutionary struggle of them, the Caracazo among others, where the bourgeoisie was forced to give something to not lose everything. And they were presented as conquests granted by the bourgeois state, thanks to the policy of the masses’ reformist leaderships. With this perverse policy, the bourgeoisie gives a miserable partial concession to the exploited people as if it were a conquest granted by the exploiters. But as Trotsky would say, at this time of crisis, reformism can pass less every time as conquests, the alms and gifts of the bourgeoisie.
They do that so the state can control the masses tightly. Why? Because sometimes, this native bourgeoisie should use the masses to negotiate and blackmail the imperialism. But Chavezism is now far from this bourgeois mechanic and increasingly is becoming direct agent of imperialism, as the FLTI said in the earlier paper.
This is what Bonapartism “sui generis” is in semi-colonial countries. The native bourgeoisie negotiates its share of national income, as a junior partner of imperialism, but always, always ends.
The “missions” are a small, petty cash of minor employees of the Bolivarian bourgeoisie. Among other things to keep the masses controlled preventing another Caracazo. They are forced to subsist only by subordinating them to the bourgeois politicians. They threaten with the blackmail to go back to perrarina’s times (dog food, eaten by the masses at the end of `80). Meanwhile they make lucrative business, for example, with the bourgeoisie of Polar Group.
For you, the “Missions” are the solution for millions of unemployed. If so, the socialism of the 21 Century,has something of socialism. Now we understand why it does not matter in your program, the unit employed and unemployed workers, as it is evident in your statement of April 17. There you do not raise, next to the sliding scale of wages, the sliding scale of working hours so all the unemployed can work and stop living on alms. Do you consider that 50% of the labor force (Overpopulation Consolidated- not relative-that Marx speaks about in Chapter XXIII of Capital) living in informal employment and self-employed state handouts without independent organization to defend them are not part of the working class and are well taken care by the “Missions”of Chavez? Since when revolutionary Marxists defend the alms collected by the working class as a revolutionary product of great deeds, and they forget that you have to end the informal employment and chronic unemployment, because this situation strengthens the bourgeoisie (having a huge army industrial reserve) to keep frozen collective agreements?
Without doubt the unions have left the unemployed to their fate (it means to the Missions and alms of chavezism) and focus on fighting for their collective labor agreement they did not realize that justly the huge industrial army of reserve is social base of the bourgeois forces that have expropriated the revolution and will deep the attack against masses as a whole; and thus, the existence of a chronic unemployment only makes more and more difficult the fight for collective contracts and other vindications.
The working class is divided; the employed worker can live through, survive while the unemployed workers have to eat every day without a job.
Many times, this breach between employed and unemployed workers gets deep enormously and weakens all the forces of the working class as a whole.
It is what all the unions’ bureaucratic leaders deny.
We, Trotskyists have the key to conquer the unity of the working class: our Transitional Program.
The fight to set up factories committees and unemployed workers’ committees, for the sliding scale of wages and working hours, is justly the only road to conquer the political independence of the working class from the bourgeoisie and the State, and it is what all the left keeps in silent. A decisive appeal of the unions and worker organizations crying out: No more Bolivarian alms, one more labor shift in all the factories with a salary according to the family basic needs, decent job for all, no payment of the foreign debt and expropriation of the bankers, for conquering a plan of public works and decent housing for all!
This appeal would strengthen totally the unions and mainly, the unity of the working class for the crisis to be paid by the capitalists, and Venezuelan bankers and of the world.
This is the most “economic” road for the working class to break with Chavezism and conquer an alternative to fight for the socialist revolution.
It isn’t by chance that Chirino and all the left currents that adulate him “forget” it.
The Transitional Program vindicates the right to work and a decent existence for all; in the chapter on “the sliding scale of wages and labor hours” insists that to the increasing high cost of living it is necessary to oppose the sliding scale of wages, that is, the automatic increase of salaries according to the high in prices of the consumer goods. Of course, this politic is of neither the union bureaucracy, nor Chirino, in particular, that lead everything to the judgments that last years in the Chavezist Labor Ministry.
We must tell the Venezuelan working class the truth as well to the millions of unemployed workers many times named “casual workers” raising a program: No more alms and misery of the Missions of the millionaire Bolivarian bourgeoisie! The Transitional Program states: “THE RIGHT OF EMPLOYMENT IS THE ONLY SERIOUS RIGHT LEFT TO THE WORKER IN A SOCIETY BASED ON EXPLOITATION. THIS RIGHT TODAY IS BEING SHORN FROM HIM AT EVERY STEP. AGAINST UNEMPLOYMENT, STRUCTURAL AS WELL AS CONJUNCTURAL, THE TIME IS RIPE TO ADVANCE ALONG WITH THE SLOGAN OF PUBLIC WORKS, THE SLOGAN OF A SLIDING SCALE OF WORKING HOURS. Trade unions and other mass organizations should bind the workers and the unemployed together in the solidarity of mutual responsibility. On this basis all the work on hand would then be divided among all existing workers in accordance with how the extent of the working week is defined. The average wage of every worker remains the same as it was under the old working week. Wages, under a strictly guaranteed minimum, would follow the movement of prices.”
This concept is summarized in the Transitional Program in the following way: “IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO ACCEPT ANY OTHER PROGRAM FOR THE PRESENT CATASTROPHIC PERIOD”. Sliding scale of salaries for the employed workers and Missions for the unemployed cannot be the program of Trotskyists for the Venezuelan working class, since it divides the working class and submits the different sectors to the Labor Ministry and the bourgeois State.
Let’s reflect on this question.
According to this note your program would be: decent judgments for the collective agreements and defense of the “Missions” because in that way the mass living standard is maintained.
We believe the opposite of it. We think that there is an absolute tendency of masses to misery, and if Chavezism in a conjunctural way had to give concessions was to cover itself with demagoguery and control masses so that they don’t advance to revolution.
We affirm that every time is lesser the investment of the bourgeoisie on the wage sum and subsidies in relation to the devaluation and high cost of living for the inflation. We believe that there is chronic and structural hunger in Venezuela and that the bourgeoisie will throw even more the crisis on exploited, even Chavezism will do it on his own social base. For that reason, Capriles waits for it quietly, because he knows that Chavezism is a squeezed lemon.
Comrade RG has not thought where he could reach in the program based on that characterization.
We insist on it, we have studied deeply Argentina and his revolutionary process in 2001 and how the native bourgeoisie expropriated such revolution with the support of Castroism, the renegades of Trotskyism and all the Bolivarian of the continent.
There, as a byproduct of deaths and huge revolutionary upheavals at the end of the ‘90s and beginning of this Century with a 20% of unemployment as an engine force, the working class gained subsidies for the unemployment equivalent at that moment at U$S 100 and then U$S 40 with devaluation named “Planes Trabajar”.
When the growing cycle is renewed in Argentina, those unemployed entered as slaves to the productive process and the “maquila” Argentina emerged having more than 55% of labor force under no registration, without any right.
Kirchner has given U$S 30 like subsidy per children for every unemployed worker or any worker with a salary minor to U$S 600. We have studied a document of LOI-CI of Argentina and their press where they state it means a subsidy for the companies not for workers.
It is the State paying the part of the deferred social salary to workers and bosses don’t pay it while keep 50% of the working class under no registration.
It is a subsidy for the boss so that it can be kept low the value of the labor force as whole of the Argentinean working class. With a salary of U$S 600 in Argentina and U$S30 per children it is not possible to eat even ten days per month. The worker under no registration earning no more than U$S 300, plus the miserable subsidy given by the government…the Kirchners must live with that money. It is a subsidy for the Bolivarian bourgeoisie and alms for workers. And what should we state? That the subsidy in Argentina must not be collected, not to go to the market to buy cheaper food? Not to go to the doctor’s office in the neighborhood where you only have a doctor to assist sick people without the possibility to go to a high quality hospital…where only the bourgeoisie can go?
We say: let´s take everything; we would have nothing without fighting and giving deaths. But if we fought and died for these is not worthy, we must fight for everything.
Moreover, with the inflation and high cost of living, the subsidies for food and for unemployment are not enough to eat ten days per month.
These are the misery and hunger conditions we suffer after huge fights and for what? For the bourgeoisie makes big business?
This is what we, the Marxists, must tell the exploited, that is, what really is taking place.
The demand of a sliding scale of wages and working hours is a central slogan in Venezuela if the aim is to conquer the unity of the working class and exploited. It is not possible even dream with the unfrozen of the collective agreements without setting up a movement of revolutionary unemployed workers.
They are part of the working class despite Chavez and chavists don´t like it.
It is the first point of a program to conquer a revolutionary leadership of the trade unions.
Cháves was not initially a petty-bourgeois government but the representative of the officers’ caste of the most rotten Venezuelan bourgeoisie who came as Bonaparte to save the interests of the whole bourgeoisie and the imperialism’s business in Venezuela after the revolutionary process of the Caracazo.
The “Missions” mean capitalist begging; even they are no longer this.
It has nothing to do with socialism or high quality health or free education that the Cuban masses gained by their revolution expropriating the bourgeoisie. In Cuba now they getting lost and the remains are exported abroad to cover the bourgeois governments, agents of imperialism, as “anti-imperialist” and “socialist”.
Those “Missions” are the fate for the more than 500.000 workers dismissed in Cuba, that means the market “socialism”, that is, submission of the working class to the capitalist market.
Lastly, we affirm that every reader of the letter of the FLTI sent to you in relation to the political crisis in Venezuela can observe that at any moment it sustains what you say in your letter: “the MUD attacks or a sector of it including assassinations of men and women of the People are fascist-type and not simply deaths in any demonstration”. (our bolds)
The FLTI’s document at any moment speaks about “simply deaths” in any demonstration. What the document states is the following:
“In this question you are seriously confused, which may even contradict the facts. In any reactionary bourgeois action there are people who die and this doesn’t mean it is a fascist coup. The counterrevolutionary bourgeois reaction of Capriles must be confronted, but first of all, if we want to mobilize the masses, we must fight the cowardice and effrontery of Maduro’s bourgeois faction, who hasn’t called the masses to do any action against this so called “fascism” or “coup”, as Maduro characterizes it. Since if the working class doesn’t break with Maduro and overpasses the limits of the “Bolivarian Revolution”, it will never be able to smash Capriles. Because Maduro has workers locked in their houses and the leaderships of the working class under his discipline. Both factions are using the masses to discuss their business. But the limit they both have on them is to support the regime and conquer a strong government to attack the working class and exploited people.”
As you can see here there is no mention of “simply deaths” or any demonstration. What it is affirmed is that in any bourgeois reactionary action can appear dead people but it doesn´t mean a fascist coup. The State is about it, a gang of armed men to kill workers…even Chavezism that as member of the murderous officers’ caste of the regime of Punto Fijo or the Bolivarian Constitution is tired of killing workers. And not for this reason they are fascist.
Fascism for Marxism is not the same way of bourgeois ruling than bonapartism or popular front or the bourgeois democratic regime or the bourgeois monarchy. It is a way of ruling based on the annihilation of every worker organization by methods of civil war of the middle class under the command of the Big Capital, and in a semi colonial country under the direct command of the imperialism closing a revolutionary situation. For that, it is the last resource of the bourgeoisie, like the classic bonapartism to smash a revolution.
It is the difference, simply. Read your document where you affirm that Capriles is at the head of fascist gangs that massacred in 2002. When this process was escaping from the control of Capriles and Maduro, quickly, they stopped every confrontation between them terrified with the irruption of masses like in 2002. As we have proved in this letter the fact that Capriles launched a fascist coup would be destroying a bourgeois opposition already conquered within the frames of the Bolivarian Constitution and that was very near to win over Chavezism in the elections. For them, it would have been a political suicide. The imperialism and the general staffs are cleverer that this. They know very well when and how to use each one of their agents.
The emergence of the militias of the worker organizations to smash the counterrevolutionary and fascistic gangs of the MUD will also emerge from the fight for the Self-Defense Committees to confront the brutal repression that the Chavist National Guard and boss hitmen against any serious workers’ fight…of course that the chavist Labor Ministry will pose like “democratic” and “allied” and “friend” of workers. Justly the mortal trap of Chavezism for masses is about it.
The entire bourgeoisie is already conscious that the lie of “Socialism of the 21 Century is getting over. The Maduro-Capriles-Obama agreement is an attempt to strengthen the regime and his government to clash against masses to make them pay for the crisis of the capitalist world economy already striking Venezuela. As the it states the document the center of the FLTI has sent you: The lie of “21st Century Socialism” is reaching the end since “with it only the bourgeoisie and imperialism got profits… and Capriles, who already swore loyalty to the Bolivarian Constitution didn’t come out of nowhere but he comes out from the unconditional respect for the Chavezism’s private property”.
We warn that the fascistic gangs will not only emerge like the MUD are doing but when the break with chavezism on the part of the working class gets deeper-something that already has started- from the chavezism’s core will emerge …do you know what, comrades? An Al Assad and a monster like Kadhafy…or an Ahmadineyad who cried for the Chavez death while sent his counterrevolutionary Republican Guard of Ayatollahs to massacre from the core of the fascist Army of Al Assad the Syrian masses. Why? It is because around chavezism emerged a new and powerful bourgeoisie linked to the oil income and the Wall Street business.
Chavezism is part of a movement like it was the imperialist ruling regime of Yalta and Postdam, the movement of “not aligned” or the “OPEC” where the native bourgeoisies together with the oil companies defined and negotiated or confronted each other in a conjunctural way for the oil price.
To see the fascist danger coming from the core of the Venezuelan oligarchy of Capriles and not to see the murderous role the Bolivarian officers’ caste will play when their property appears to be under risk, it can be a very dangerous oblivion.
We expect to have your document.
November 9th, 2016
The UTOPIA OF THE DEMOCRATIZATION OF THE REGIME OF THE BOLIVARIAN CONSTITUTION
The positions of the renegades of Trotskyism on Venezuela are a sample of how, in the midst of the global capitalist bankruptcy, the currents of the “New Left” play the role of holders of states and regimes. The LTS, a small group run from Buenos Aires by PTS, is one of the greatest shameless supporters of the decomposing Bolivarian Republic. At the other extreme of the renegades of Trotskyism, from a liberal democratic opposition to Maduro, the PSL (UIT) and the UST (LIT) raise a policy that essentially coincides with the LTS. They are rare opponents of Maduro who are in a front of class collaboration with Chavez currents. The position of these currents before the Bolivarian bourgeois regime makes it clear that the renegades of Trotskyism gave up the struggle for socialist revolution to embrace the program of “extreme democracy”. Therefore, this controversy is not limited to the LTS but is directed to all these currents. Let’s see.
In the October 26 statement published in La Izquierda Diario, the LTS says that the task at hand is “to conquer a greater freedom for the working people”. According to this current, it is about “responding to the legitimate democratic aspirations of the working people, who seek a solution to the very serious situation and want to really weigh their will in national affairs.”
In the first place, it is completely false to say that the workers are fighting to expand their democratic rights in a country where there were literally thousands of spontaneous revolts due to hunger since 2015, against the African living conditions imposed on them by the exploiters. If the PTS leaders lined up for 8 or 10 hours to get some rice or bread, or if they went down to the pickets for hunger or water in the slums, they would not meet people demanding to vote but with hungry workers, who ask for food, medicines, drinking water, whose children die. All the exploiters know it. The MUD and the Church do not get tired of saying it.
The PTS-LTS leadership also knows this. It is not an oversight, but the true demands for the workers’ bread are hidden in order to justify a liberal support program for Maduro and the Bolivarian regime, as we will see below. That leadership does not tell the truth to the working class.
The LTS-PTS and its Bernstein-like “extreme democracy”
In that statement, the LTS says that the working class must fight for “a greater democracy”, for a “Constituent Assembly” that will solve the exploited all the problems ... but without the need to defeat the Maduro government and the General Staff of the FANB, or to overthrow the Bolivarian regime to seize power. In that statement they speak of “socialism”, of “organisms of self-determination”, etc. but they do not even mention this central issue.
This current omits hunger, repression, the dead, mass detentions, fascism; they are silent that the Bolivarian Republic is a fierce class dictatorship organized so that Wall Street continues looting and sinking Venezuela. The leaders of the PTS are abstracted from all this and dream that Maduro and the generals retire peacefully, and that from this Bolivarian Republic a beautiful ‘democracy’ arises which will be the deepening of the ‘partial and limited conquests’ of Chavezism. In that ‘extreme democracy’ (a “Constituent Assembly”), arising from the expansion of the Bolivarian Republic, the workers will have many ‘rights and social conquests’. Chavez, says the LTS, advanced on that path but unfortunately had limits, and now the right wing tries to liquidate these conquests, as happens in Brazil with Dilma.
This “extreme democracy” is the longing of these people. It has nothing to envy to the utopia of the right-wing social-democrat Bernstein, who sought to move from capitalism to socialism by a peaceful and evolutionary stretch of bourgeois democracy.
Democratization of the Bolivarian Republic or socialist revolution?
Nobody denies that the exploited need more democracy. That is basic. The question is what kind of democracy do they need, how is it achieved and for what purpose?
In recent years, the exploited faced the Maduro government by setting up assemblies, strike committees, pickets, de facto committees in the neighborhoods, but not to demand voting as the LTS says, but for wages, food, medicines or water. There it was decided by show of hands what action to take forward, determining its future always with the method of workers’ democracy. There lived the democracy that the exploited needed to face Maduro. This happened in SIDOR, in the streets of San Félix, Ciudad Piar, Puerto Ordaz, in Catia and Petare.
The spreading, deepening and centralization of these organisms was a huge danger not only for Maduro, but especially for Wall Street and the oligarchy. That is why the army troops, the Gendarmerie, the police, the fascist collectives of the SEBIN, the union bureaucracy and the lumpen, came to dissolve these direct democracy organizations and crush the struggle of the workers with tanks and lead.
This was not done by the oligarchy or imperialism. The Bolivarians did it under the bourgeois Bolivarian Constitution that they themselves sanctioned in 1999, which protects first private property, and above all, the property and business of Wall Street. The Bolivarian Republic that the LTS wants to deepen is a ferocious Bonapartism that keeps the factories and working-class neighborhoods under military occupation to guarantee imperialist plunder. There are dead, missing and prisoners. For any suspicion, a worker is taken from his house by the SEBIN or the Chavez collectives, and if he is lucky, he is not shot in the head in front of his family, but he is imprisoned and tortured.
So, what “democracy” wants to expand the LTS? Does the “extreme democracy” that breaks with imperialism and makes “socialism” -as they maintain in its declaration- arise from the peaceful evolution of the bourgeois pro-imperialist Bolivarian Republic? This current speaks of breaking with imperialism with an “extreme democracy” without demolishing the Executive Power, the National Assembly of the MUD, the caste of judges and above all, the murderous officers of the FANB monitored by the Pentagon from Colombia. That is, they want to break with imperialism and leave intact the bourgeois state machinery that is just to guarantee the imperialist plundering with violence and terror on the exploited of Venezuela.
In the Bolivarian Republic, anyone who touches a single dollar of the transnationals ends up dead by repression, shot by the paramilitary gangs of the Chavists’ Collectives, or imprisoned with false charges and tortured like the CIVETCHI workers. The LTS wants to build an “extreme democracy” that coexists alongside that state machinery of repression at the service of imperialism.
This current knows perfectly well that in Venezuela all serious struggle for the rights of the exploited leads to a direct clash with the government and the troops, and that raises its revolutionary fall. Let’s look at the elementary question of food, for example.
What did the Executive Power do with food? He militarized his distribution and placed it under the direct custody of Padrino López, Chief of the General Staff of the FANB and superintendent of Maduro. Today the Armed Forces guard the department stores and merchandise stores. The officers manage the “bachaqueo” of food (resale on the black market) and have monopolized huge food deposits in the main barracks. They guarantee that rich neighborhoods will get meats, fresh vegetables, oils, preserves, etc. in abundance and quality, and that nothing comes to the working class neighborhoods.
in abundance and quality, and that nothing comes to the working class neighborhoods.
It is evident that in order to eat the exploited must expropriate not only those large warehouses, but also the property of imperialism and the oligarchy, to produce food and import the shortage. And it is also evident that this cannot be done peacefully with a Constituent Assembly, if the generals are not defeated before the institutions of the Bolivarian Constitution regime are demolished, because they guard the food deposits and the property of the banks and transnational. That is why, for the elementary question of obtaining food, the exploited must make a revolution: to set up direct democracy organizations, arm themselves and leave the army to prepare the insurrection and the seizure of power.
But these questions, which are the ABC of Marxism, perfectly known by the LTS-PTS and all the renegades of Trotskyism, are consciously silenced by these directions.
The lessons of the Maghreb and the Middle East
Social-democratic LTS-type recipes, which embellish implacable enemies and throw dirt into the eyes of workers, end in tragedy for the exploited. In the Maghreb and the Middle East all the renegades of Trotskyism applied a policy modeled after the LTS. When in 2011 the exploited from Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Syria, etc. took to the streets for bread and to conquer it they threw dictatorships and left armies, these currents said that they did not have to arm themselves, move towards the expropriation of imperialism and the seizure of power. They said that they were democratic revolutions, whose task was to replace the tyrannies of Mubarak, Ben Ali, etc. by bourgeois democratic regimes. “Eat? Of course”, they said, “but the immediate task is to conquer democracy; let’s vote and get organized”.
Which was the result? The bread was not obtained because neither was it expropriated to the imperialism and the oil companies nor power was taken; the “democratic revolution” proclaimed by these renegades ended in a bloodbath at the hands of the generals, fierce dictatorships such as Al Sisi in Egypt, and in Syria, a terrifying genocide that is costing the lives of 600 thousand exploited.
Maduro, the Castro, Evo Morales, etc., supported Khadafy as they support Assad today demanding the crushing and extermination of the revolutionary masses, because they know that there is not only the political regime at stake, but the property of the exploiters and the very existence of the bourgeois state that holds that property.
The program of the Fourth International is the key for the victory of the Venezuelan workers and exploited
We Trotskyists say to the workers, to the oppressed of Venezuela: in order to eat you have to make “the workers’ revolution” proclaimed by the workers of SIDOR, on whom the LTS turned its back. Let the renegades of Marxism accompany the Bolivarians to the grave. They have nothing to do with the most heartfelt aspirations of the deep proletariat that will rise up against the Bolivarians. The factory workers of La Paz and their struggle against Evo Morales are the vanguard of the workers’ movement that is beginning to emerge from the decline of the Bolivarians.
The Trotskyists of the FLTI defend the legacy of the Fourth International and the program theory of the Permanent Revolution because that is the flag that will lead to the triumph of the Latin American proletariat. In Venezuela there will be no bread or “democracy” if it is not making the revolution, if it is not defeating and throwing off the oppressors and exploiters who bleed the people to hand over the nation to Wall Street. Only in this way can a truly democratic Venezuela emerge, where the broad masses rule and not a handful of parasitic oligarchs and boli-bourgeois, with their general executioners; a Venezuela independent from imperialism and bankers; a socialist Venezuela, where the property is in the hands of the exploited, to meet the needs of the vast majority of the people; a Venezuela bastion of the Latin American and world revolution. This is the objective of the Trotskyists of the FLTI... a workers’ and socialist Venezuela without generals, bosses or imperialist bankers.
Liga Comunista de Trabajadores
(Workers’ Communist League)