It's spooky season! Drawing on Frankenstein and his Monster, a comrade reflects on Silvia Federici's Beyond the Periphery of the Skin from a trans- perspective.
The Tories won the General Election, with a significant majority. This is understandably a heartbreaking result to many of us, who had hoped that, at the very least, decades of crushing austerity would be partly reversed. While we cautioned those on the left who were fully behind the Labour Party not to expend their efforts running in a circle, we made it clear that we were not in a position to advocate a boycott; and so, today, as we face another five years of uninhibited Tory rule, our disappointment is just as great as theirs.
Nonetheless, this is, once again, an indictment of relying on the bourgeois political system to enact real progressive change. We made this position clear in our recent article on the false hope of Labour’s moderate social democracy. This result exposes reformist opportunism for what it is: an unmistakable sham, a waste of time and effort, unrepentant in its ability to dampen real socialist movements. When you fight the bourgeoisie on the bourgeoisie’s terms, the bourgeoisie will always win. Their media and marketing empires have a stranglehold on the narrative. Today, as we accelerate down the path towards the final crisis of capitalism, the ruling classes have realised that even small reforms are unthinkable.
The British left has been totally trapped in the Labour Party's gravitational pull for the last four years, and decades before. As a result of Labour’s abject failure, we now face five years of the worst that the Tories have to offer. Our health, livelihoods, housing, social services, and most vulnerable friends and comrades are at risk.
Similarly, we face a threat from the worst segments of the “left” - parties (such as the CPGB-ML and CPB/YCL) that are already attempting, or will likely attempt, to pivot to chauvinism, opportunistically trying to gain respect from their imagined “working class”. We must stand resolute against the toxins of chauvinist, racist, homophobic, transphobic and ableist thought! We must stamp them out wherever they sprout! We must fight for all proletarians, at home and abroad!
So, what is to be done? Do we lie down and capitulate, accepting our inevitable doom? No! We must get out on the streets, get out in our communities, get out in our workplaces. There is no way to fight this other than to educate and agitate. Through organising in our communities and workplaces, we can empower marginalised and downtrodden people and build self-sufficient bases of dual power. Do not let sadness and shock defeat you; let it empower you and push you on, to true radical action.
The stakes have never been higher. The supposed “alternative” is laid prostrate, smashed. Now we organize. Now we start to win. This struggle is our defining moment.