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  • 보스크프스키 2016.06.05 18:01 신고 수정/삭제 답글


    New housing bill could pave the way for the final destruction of social housing



    Is this the end of social housing in Britain or the start of a fight-back?







    A bill designed by the Tories to eliminate council housing is currently going through parliament. The intention behind the bill is to phase out permanent tenancies for council tenants and to sell off vast numbers of council and housing association homes.


    Families seeking housing are to be offered so-called ‘starter homes’ at £250,000, or £450,000 in London, as a substitute for so-called ‘affordable’ housing (which is already notorious for being anything but).


    A housing crisis is spreading across the country, but the power of the organised working class can defeat these plans.


    The main measures of the bill


    1. Permanent tenancies to be phased out.


    Until the Tories won the election in 2010, all council tenancies were permanent tenancies. If the proposed bill is passed, however, all new council tenancies will be fixed-term tenancies of two to five years. This will apply even in those cases where someone had a permanent secure tenancy but has applied for a transfer to a new home.


    Under a five-year tenancy, councils no longer have any responsibility to house someone once the tenancy runs out, unless they are in ‘priority need’. Think of the consequences. A family is housed because they have children under 16 (or under 19 if they are in full-time education or training), since having children of this age is one of the definitions of ‘priority need’. Once the children pass this age, however, the council will be entitled to throw the entire family onto the streets with no obligation to make sure they have somewhere to go.


    If you are overcrowded and you apply for rehousing, then, under this clause, you risk making yourself and your family homeless in the future. This is a savage attack on the security and welfare of working-class people.


    2. New requirement for ‘starter homes’ rather than affordable housing to be included in new housing developments. ‘Starter homes’ can be valued at up to £250,000 – or £450,000 in London!


    David Cameron has confirmed that this plan will divert funding from existing affordable housing obligations (called ‘Section 106’ obligations) to the construction of starter homes. At present, local authorities can oblige developers to build low-rent homes as part of any large building scheme, as the price of planning permission. In future, this subsidy will be diverted to funding starter homes instead.


    Section 106 obligations currently deliver around one third of all affordable homes each year. This supply is bound to dry up when the changes come into effect.


    The charity Shelter has recently made the rather obvious point that ‘starter homes’ are not affordable to most families on low and middle incomes. The charity’s research found that the average starter home will be unaffordable to families on middle incomes in a majority (58 percent) of the country by 2020. A family on the new ‘National Living Wage’ will not be able to afford a starter home in 98 percent of the country. (See Housing and planning bill: second reading briefing (House of Lords) by Steve Akehurst, Shelter, January 2016)


    3. Right to Buy introduced for housing-association properties.


    It is claimed that these homes will be replaced, but, as Shelter says, the government’s definition of ‘replacement’ is inadequate. It is national, not local, and allows housing associations to replace low-rent homes with starter homes and shared ownership (which are far less affordable to most working families) in areas far from where the homes being ‘replaced’ have been sold.


    Since 2012, only one in nine council homes sold under the existing Right to Buy has been replaced, so it is very likely that this promise is just another in a long line of lies aimed at reducing opposition.


    4. Councils compelled to sell off ‘high-value’ homes when they become empty.


    This will fund Right to Buy discounts for housing association tenants across the country. Shelter calculates that 19,000 council homes could be sold in this way by 2020, with 113,000 at risk in total.(See Forced council sales – impact on combined authorities by Steve Akehurst and Sara Mahmoud, Shelter, January 2016)


    5. People in council homes with a household income of more than £30,000 (£40,000 in London) will have their rents increased to a level that may reach market levels.


    With market rents on two-bedroom properties running at well over £1,000 a month in the London suburbs, families could easily end up spending half their salary on rent. Let us not forget that even in cheaper housing markets – for example, Manchester – this would mean families spending a third of their take-home pay on rent. Not great news when you have bills to pay and children to provide for. (See Consultation response: pay to stay by Vicky Pearlman, Shelter, December 2015)


    Capitalism and the housing crisis


    Selling off social housing and taking away tenants’ rights has to be seen in the context of our imperialist, finance-capital-orientated economy. The aim of the government is the total sell-off and privatisation of social housing in order to provide investment opportunities for finance capital.


    This is a process that will be facilitated by Cameron’s recent pledge to bulldoze council estates in order to gift the land to private developers. In a developed socialist economy, the emphasis would be on developing high-tech industry to meet people’s needs and to automate work to reduce toil and repetitive labour.


    In conditions of capitalist economic crisis, on the other hand, the imperialists have shifted much of our industry off shore to take advantage of low pay in the oppressed countries. Much domestic investment is directed towards speculation rather than into anything productive, and the property market is a prime target for this gambling. As capital floods into property to make easy profits, so housing becomes more and more unaffordable for ever-larger sections of the working class.


    The greedy capitalists cannot even pay a living wage to the workers who put up these houses for them. Despite the vast profits to be made on house building, the capitalists routinely exploit unprotected immigrant labour on building sites, refusing to allow any unionisation or basic safety protections and often paying rates of only £7 an hour.


    Workers can win the right to housing


    Sadly, the bill is likely to be passed by parliament, but this need not mean that the working class has lost. Workers have the strength and power to beat the capitalist onslaught on our right to housing. We will only have truly secure housing when we have got rid of capitalism altogether and replaced it with socialism, but even under the present conditions, if we are organised and determined, we can force the ruling class to give up some of its profits in order to provide social housing to all who need it.


    One hopeful sign is that the RMT union has included a demand for higher pay that is linked to the increasing cost of housing in its ongoing dispute (arising from the proposed introduction of night trains on the London Underground). If planned strikes go ahead, they will cripple public transport in London.


    Such strike action is in the interest of all working-class people. Organised workers have the power to put housing on the agenda and force the government to end its policy of selling off social housing. They can only do this, however, if they break the power of the Labour party-linked bureaucrats who run the unions. No effective action is possible with a reformist union agenda based solely around getting Labour elected.


    The government and the bosses need to be presented with a choice: either massive pay rises for the working class to pay for the absurd effects of the market system on house prices and rents, or a huge programme of social housing to tackle the housing crisis.


    Meanwhile, we need to appreciate the context in which we are struggling and draw the correct conclusions.


    When social housing was first introduced, it was because the industrial bourgeoisie needed a ready supply of cheap workers for their factories and other work places. Later on, it was maintained because the socialist Soviet Union provided universal social housing to all who needed it and the British ruling class was worried that if certain social benefits were not provided to the masses of workers here, then they would be tempted to follow the Soviet Union in overthrowing capitalism so as to provide for themselves what the capitalist class ruling class would not.


    Today, industry has largely moved offshore and the mighty Soviet Union has been brought down, so our capitalist ruling class lacks all incentive to waste good profits on providing benefits for workers. In the course of having to fight at great personal cost for such basic human rights as decent housing, the proletariat will be discarding its illusions that it is possible for capitalism to provide long term for the interests of workers.


    It is an essential part of workers’ education that we fully grasp that it is a fundamental law of capitalism that over time the rich will richer while the poor get poorer. This law cannot be overcome while capitalism remains. The illusion that it could be was fostered in imperialist countries for much of the 20th century because imperialism caused the worst poverty to be exported to oppressed countries while the standard of living of workers in the imperialist countries rose.


    Today, however, the chickens are coming home to roost, and the increasing poverty of the proletariat is spreading not only to lower-paid workers in the imperialist countries but even to privileged workers – those with sought-after skills and the intellectuals – who can no longer glory in a well-paid job for life. Increasingly, life is making it obvious that it’s time to face it: capitalism must go.


    With the working-class movement as weak is it is at present, and with the communist movement in disarray and riddled with opportunism, our imperialist ruling class feels able to laugh in the faces of those who demand rights for workers. If any concessions are to be wrung, these will be successful to the extent that the revolutionary communist movement gains in strength and influence, threatening bourgeois state power.


    It is clear that nothing is going to be handed to us on a plate. It is time we understood our collective power and organised ourselves to use it!






  • 노정투 2016.06.03 19:52 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    구조조정, 피할 수 없다면 제대로 붙자!

    -모든 해고 금지, 비정규직 철폐의 깃발 아래 단결하자!


    총선이 끝나자마자 더민주당 김종인은 정부에 “본질적이고 적극적인 구조조정”을 주문했다. 안철수 역시 “개별 기업 구조조정 차원을 넘어 구조개혁이 필요하다”고 했다. 구조조정은 기본이란 얘기다. 야당이 판을 깔아주자 새누리당은 구조조정을 위한 여야정(여당, 야당, 정부) 협의체 구성을 제안하며 속도를 내고 있다.



    저들은 여야정 협의체를 노동자 죽이기 구조조정을 피할 수 없는 대세로 굳히는 수단이자 구조조정을 받아들이라고 노조를 압박하는 수단으로 활용할 것이다.



    자본가들의 움직임도 빨라졌다. 현대중공업은 3,000명을 자르고 부서 100개를 없애겠다고 한다. 대우조선도 3,000명을 자르겠다고 한다. 이 숫자를 그대로 믿을 사람은 없다. 이미 조선산업에서만 비정규직 수천 명이 잘려 나갔다. 앞으로 거제에서만 2만 명 넘는 노동자가 일자리를 잃을 가능성이 높다.



    구조조정은 조선·해운뿐만 아니라 철강, 석유화학 업종을 포함한 전체 산업으로 확산될 전망이다. 정부가 구조조정의 1차 타겟으로 삼고 있는 ‘만성적 한계기업’ 비중은 2009년 8.2%(1851개)에서 2014년 10.6%(2561개)로 2.4%포인트 상승했다. 만성적 한계기업은 이자보다 영업이익이 적은 연도가 최근 10년간 두 해 이상인 기업이다.



    구조조정은 이런 기업에서만 일어나는 일이 아니다. 자본가들과 정부는 소위 “선제적 구조조정”이라는 이름 아래 인수·합병, 해고, 외주화, 비정규직화 등을 밀어붙이고 있다. 경쟁은 격화되고, 시장은 좁아지며, 이윤율이 하락하는 상황에서 자본가들에게 다른 탈출구는 없다. 구조조정 공격은 비정규직 노동자들만이 아니라 정규직 노동자들에게까지 확산된다. 공황이 깊어질수록 자본가들이 겪는 어려움도 커지고 자본가들은 조직노동자들을 가만히 두고서는 위기를 벗어날 수 없다고 판단하기 때문이다. 구조조정의 칼바람을 피할 수 있는 노동자는 거의 없다.



    구조조정의 핵심은 한편으로는 인력 감축이지만 다른 한편으로는 ‘노동조합 죽이기’다. 노동자 저항의 진지인 노동조합을 무력화한다면 수천 명을 내보내 인건비를 절감하는 것 이상의 효과를 발휘한다. 반대로 일시적으로 구조조정이 성공한다 하더라도 노동조합이 두 눈 부릅뜨고 살아 있다면, 노동자들은 저항을 포기하지 않을 것이고, 따라서 자본가들 역시 만만치 않은 부대비용을 감당해야 하기 때문이다. 따라서 자본가들은 정부의 양대지침(일반해고, 취업규칙변경 요건 완화)을 비롯해 수많은 악법, 시행령, 공권력의 힘 등을 총동원해 민주노조를 탄압한다.



    땜질식 구조조정은 안 된다?



    더민주당의 구조조정 주장은 자본가들과 부자들을 대변하는 자본가정당의 임무에 비춰 보면 새로운 것이 아니다. 그동안도 그들은 자본가를 살리고 노동자를 죽이는 구조조정 자체에 반대하지 않았다. 김대중, 노무현 정부도 이러저러한 구조조정을 밀어붙였고, 정리해고제와 비정규직 법안을 만들면서 노동자를 악랄하게 억압하지 않았던가?



    “성장이 최대의 복지요, 최고의 분배다.”, “기업이 감당할 수 있는 범위에서 근로자에게 잘해줘야 한다”, “과감하게 근로자의 임금 수준을 양보할 수 있어야 기업이 산다”는 발언을 쏟아낸 더민주당 비례대표 당선자 최운열은 기업을 살리기 위해선 노동자가 희생해야 한다는 자본가들의 철학을 좀 더 거침없이 말했을 뿐이다.



    김종인은 구조조정의 전제조건으로 부실기업을 지원하는 식의 ‘땜질식 구조조정’을 지휘하지 말 것과 실업 대책을 얘기했다. 이것도 새롭지 않다. 자본가계급 정치인들은 누구나 말로는 ‘땜질식 구조조정’은 안 된다고 말한다. 하지만 생산의 무정부성과 과잉생산에 기초한 자본주의에서 구조조정은 땜질식으로밖에 이루어지지 않는다. 생산과 분배를 계획적으로 통제하지 못하는 자본주의에서 누가 기업들의 흥망성쇠를 예측할 수 있는가? 격화되는 경쟁 속에서 갑작스럽게 기업들이 파산하는 건 필연이다. 더군다나 순탄한 성장의 시대는 영원히 지나갔다. 기업들의 불안정성은 더욱 커지고 이윤 쟁탈전은 더욱 치열해진다. 그래서 그때그때마다 정부는 자본주의 체제 전체의 효율성과 안전이라는 기준에 입각해 어느 기업은 살리고 어느 기업은 죽여야 하는지를 계산해야 한다. 기업이 살든 죽든 손실은 죄다 노동자에게 떠넘긴다.



    사회의 운영원리가 이윤 극대화에서 전체 노동자의 삶의 개선으로, 무한경쟁에서 전체 노동자의 협동과 계획화로 바뀌며, 노동자가 기술·기계를 운영하고 통제하는 주체로 서는 그런 사회에서만, 즉 노동해방 사회에서만 노동자 죽이기 구조조정은 없어질 것이다.



    김종인이 얘기하는 땜질식 구조조정 반대도 노동자를 위한 것이 아니다. 부실기업에 너무 많은 돈을 쏟아붓다 보니 은행과 국가 재정에 많은 부담이 줘 좀 더 신중할 필요가 있고 한계기업을 더 많이 정리하는 게 돈을 대 준 은행과 정부의 파산 가능성을 줄일 수 있다는 의미일 뿐이다. 부실기업을 지원하든 안 하든 노동자의 상황이 크게 바뀌는 것도 아니다.



    예를 들어 지금까지 수많은 공적 자금이 투입되었지만 그건 노동자에 대한 대량해고와 구조조정을 전제할 때만 가능한 것이었다. 부실기업을 지원하지 않아 기업이 파산하면 노동자들은 길거리로 나앉거나 고용보장을 위해 길고 긴 투쟁을 해야 한다.



    누구나 실업 대책이 있어야 한다고 주장한다. 자본가들과 정부는 실업 대책을 만들겠다고 백만 번도 넘게 약속했을 것이다. 한겨레 같은 신문도 실업 대책이 전제돼야 구조조정이 가능하다고 얘기한다. 그런데 한국처럼 애초부터 사회보장제도가 거의 전무한 곳에서 “해고는 살인” 그 자체다. 기껏해야 아주 짧은 기간 동안 겨우 입에 풀칠할 수준의 실업 대책이란 자본가들의 거대한 범죄를 감추는 기만일 수밖에 없다.



    그리고 기만 수준을 넘어서는 실업대책을 얻기 위해선 자본가계급과 정부에 맞서 비타협적으로 싸워야만 한다. 쇠퇴하는 자본주의는 수많은 방법으로 노동자계급이 획득한 다양한 사회적 복지를 후퇴시키고 박탈해버리고 있다. 쥐꼬리만 한 복지제도도 해체시키는 마당에, 자본가들과 정부의 지불 능력이 바닥을 기고 있는 상황에서 그 어떤 자본가가, 그 어떤 자본가 정부가 스스로 의미 있는 실업 대책을 내놓겠는가?





    회사 살리기가 아니라 노동자 살리기



    노동개악 전면 공세뿐 아니라 구조조정 공세가 점점 더 많은 현장을 덮치고 있다. 지난 3월 23일 노동부는 자본가들이 노동개악을 현장에 직접 밀어붙일 수 있도록 <노동개혁 현장실천을 위한 임단협 지도방향>을 발표했다. 임금피크제와 성과연봉제를 중심으로 임금체계를 전면 바꾸고 조직된 노동자들이 투쟁으로 쟁취한 단체협약을 무력화시키겠다는 의도다. 이런 공세가 먹히면 먹힐수록 자본가들의 구조조정은 쉬워진다. 이렇게 정부와 자본가들의 거센 공격이 밀어닥치고 있지만 노동자들은 아직 힘찬 반격의 문을 열지 못하고 있다. 특히 여러 대공장 노조는 여전히 깊은 겨울잠에서 깨어나지 못하고 있고 노동자 살리기가 아니라 회사 살리기에 더 깊숙이 빠져 들고 있다.



    얼마 전 기아차 광주지회는 새누리당 광주시당과 함께 ‘광주 자동차 100만대 생산도시 조성사업’ 추진을 위해 협력하기로 했다. 한국지엠지부는 지난 총선 때 더민주당 부평·계양 후보와 한국지엠의 미래발전과 고용안정을 위해 함께 노력할 것을 약속하고 정책협약을 맺었다.



    노동자들의 위기 의식은 커지고 있지만 이렇게 대공장 노조 관료들은 노동자의 단결과 투쟁을 만들기 위해 노력하기는커녕 자본가 당들과 함께 회사 발전을 모색하고 있다. 이런 노사협조주의를 아래로부터 무너뜨려 나가야만 노동자들은 노동개악과 구조조정 문제 앞에서 자본가들과 정확히 선을 긋고 투쟁동력을 만들어갈 수 있다.



    회사와 이러저러하게 협조하고 양보안을 던진다고 노동자의 생존권을 지킬 순 없다. 현대중공업 권오갑 사장은 지난해 6월 "인위적 인력 구조조정의 전면 중단을 선언한다"고 밝혔다. 하지만 그동안 비정규직 노동자들은 수없이 잘려 나갔고 불과 1년도 되지 않아 정규직 노동자들에게까지 해고의 칼날을 들이대고 있다. 대우조선노조는 작년 11월 말 경영위기극복을 위한 노사공동선언문을 작성하고 회사 살리기에 협조했지만 정부와 자본가들은 더 악랄한 공격을 시도하고 있다.



    이윤이 줄어들고 파산, 부도의 망령이 자본가들의 폭력성과 공격성을 몇 배 이상 증폭시키는 상황에서 노조의 양보안은 자본가의 더 확대된 공격만을 불러올 뿐이다. 쌍용차지부가 2009년 4월 7일 총고용보장을 위해 임금삭감을 전제로 노동시간을 단축(5+5와 3조 2교대)하고, 복지를 축소하는 양보안을 제시했지만 정부와 자본가는 꿈쩍도 하지 않았다. 자본은 노조의 자구안 발표가 있은 지 단 하루 만인 4월 8일 무려 2,646명에 대한 구조조정·정리해고 계획을 발표했다. 노동조합의 양보안은 단결투쟁의 기운을 높여가야 할 때 ‘얼마만큼 양보할 것인가’로 분위기를 몰아간다. 자본과 정부는 양보안을 받아보고 공격을 멈추는 것이 아니라 더 강경하게 나올 것이 분명하다.





    자본가 야당에 대한 의존과 환상에서 벗어나기



    자본가계급은 여당뿐만 아니라 야당도 활용할 줄 안다. 그들의 기만과 감언이설로 노동자를 더 잘 속일 수 있기 때문이다. 또한 자본가 야당이 존재해야 노동자들의 정치적 열망을 자본가 여당과 야당 중 하나를 선택하는 문제로 제한해 노동자 정치를 효과적으로 봉쇄할 수 있기 때문이다.



    자본가계급은 여당이든 야당이든 정치권에 영향을 미치는 방법을 잘 안다. 다음 기사는 빙산의 일각일 뿐이다. “대한상공회의소와 전국경제인연합회 등 주요 경제단체들은 총선 투표 마감 직후 논평을 통해 20대 국회가 경제 활성화에 적극 나서야 한다고 선공을 취했다. 전경련은 특히 기업들이 경쟁력을 가질 수 있는 기반을 조성하는 데 초당적 노력을 하는 국회가 되기를 바란다고 밝혔다. 대한상공회의소도 “대한민국 경제가 재도약…하는 데 국회의 책무가 막중하다”고 했다. 경총(한국경영자총협회)은 강한 압박전선을 펼쳤다. “선거과정에서 제시된 공약들을 합리적 관점에서 재검토”하라고 했다. 재계를 압박하는 경제민주화 등을 수정하라는 것이다. … 재계는 18대와 19대 국회에서 여당이 과반의석을 확보한 이후 줄곧 대여(對與)업무에 주력해왔다. 여소야대인 만큼 … 인력 재배치가 불가피해졌다.”(<여소야대 총선결과 그리고 재계>, 일요서울 4월 15일자)



    박근혜의 노동개악 강행 발언, 야당들의 구조조정 협조 발언은 모두 자본가계급의 위 주장들과 궤를 완전히 같이 하고 있다.



    자본가들은 모든 힘을 다해 노동개악과 구조조정을 밀어붙이고 있다. 야당은 세월호 특별법을 개정하고 국정교과서를 폐지하겠다고 한다. 대중이 분노하고 있는 주제 중에서 비교적 수월하게 국회 내의 정치적 공방으로 이동시켜 자신들의 존재를 효과적으로 부각시킬 수 있는 주제에 대해선 마치 자신들이 노동자 민중의 진정한 대변자인 것처럼 포장할 수 있고, 실제로 그렇게 하고 있다.



    물론 자본가들은 떠벌일 줄만 아는 야당지도자들의 무기력을 잘 알고 있다. 설사 이들이 대중의 지지를 유지하기 위해서 조금 움직인다 하더라도 경제위기를 전면에 내세우면서 야당들을 쉽게 압박할 수 있다.



    그런데 더민주당과 국민의당은 경제 위기라는 쟁점에 대해선 그들이 갖고 있는 고유한 색깔을 분명히 드러낸다. 자본가계급의 명령이 더 분명하게 제시되기 때문이다. 자본가들을 살리기 위해선 노동자들을 희생시켜야 한다는 지배자들의 원칙이 반드시 관철되어야 하기 때문이다.



    노동자의 관점은 정반대다. 경제위기의 책임은 자본가들에게 있다. 그래서 노동자가 희생당할 수는 없다는 원칙을 정면으로 제기해야 한다. 자본가 야당에 어떠한 환상도 갖지 말고 오직 노동자 투쟁의 원칙에 입각해 노동개악 저지 투쟁과 구조조정 투쟁을 하나로 결합시켜야 한다. 물론 이 투쟁은 기본적으로 수세적인 투쟁이다. 지금의 상태를 방어하는 데 초점이 맞추어져 있기 때문이다.



    그렇다 하더라도 싸워야만 노동자들은 자신의 권리를 방어할 수 있다. 다만 형식적인 투쟁에 머무르지 않으려면 구조조정 반대라는 추상적 요구 대신에 노동자의 구체적 요구를 정확히 내걸어야 한다. 또한 단지 방어적인 요구에 제한하지 않고 노동자의 삶과 노동조건을 개선하라는 요구를 과감하게 내걸면서 치고나가야 한다.



    ‘모든 형태의 해고 금지’를 전면적으로 제기해야 한다. 이와 함께 ‘비정규직 철폐’, ‘외주화(비정규직화) 저지’, ‘비정규직 정규직화’ 등은 가장 기본적인 요구다. ‘노동시간 단축을 통한 일자리 나누기’, ‘최저임금의 대폭 인상’, ‘기본급으로 생활임금 쟁취’, ‘노동강도 완화’도 전면적으로 내걸어야 하는 투쟁 요구다.





    진정한 총파업을 향해



    그런데 단지 무엇이 올바른 요구인가만을 고민해서는 노동개악 저지 투쟁이나 구조조정 투쟁을 전진시킬 수 없다. 노동자들이 스스로 거대한 힘을 확신할 수 있도록 투쟁 속에서 자신감을 만들어가야 한다. 그것을 위해 가장 중요한 것은 노동자의 분열을 극복하고 단결을 성사시켜 내는 것이다.



    정규직 노동자와 비정규직 노동자, 대공장 노동자와 중소공장 노동자, 조직된 노동자와 미조직 노동자의 단결 없이는 민주노조운동은 사회적 고립을 피할 수 없고 따라서 거대한 구조조정이 덮쳐도 자신감 있게 싸울 수 없다. 특히 대공장 상황은 더더욱 그렇다. 지금도 조선소 물량팀을 비롯해 수많은 한시하청·단기계약직 노동자들이 쫓겨나고 있는데 이들에 대한 해고를 방치하는 노조가 어떻게 사회적 고립을 피할 수 있겠는가?



    민주노조에 대한 탄압과 노동자 죽이기 구조조정은 이미 반동화되어 있는 자본주의 아래에서 늘 있어왔다. 하지만 극심한 경제위기는 이런 공격을 더욱 전면화하고 있다. 자본가계급은 전면적인 공격을 위해 노동자의 반발을 잠재울 수 있는 더 강력한 정치적 억압 장치들(집회·시위에 대한 탄압, 사상의 자유 봉쇄 등)을 구축한다.



    착취 강화, 구조 조정, 정치적 억압 등 자본가계급의 총력전에 맞설 수 있는 유일한 방법은 노동자계급의 총력전이다. IMF시기에는 1997년 총파업투쟁과 같은 총노동의 강력한 저지선이 있었다. 물론 이 저지선은 민주노총 지도부의 한계 때문에 구멍이 뚫리고 말았지만, 이 저지선을 통해 확인된 노동자들의 힘은 이후 정리해고 분쇄 투쟁으로 이어졌다. 그리고 이 투쟁의 에너지와 교훈이 민주노동당을 비롯한 노동자 정치세력화 운동의 원동력이었다.



    작년에도 확인되었듯이 민주노총 지도부, 각 산별 연맹 지도부는 진정한 총파업을 조직할 수 있는 의지와 실력이 없다. 그들에 기대기만 해서는 총파업은커녕 노동개악과 구조조정에 맞선 강력한 개별 투쟁도 불가능하다. 선진노동자들, 그리고 평조합원들이 하나로 단결해 아래로부터의 현장투쟁과 연대투쟁을 만들고 총파업을 조직해 나가야 한다.



    이미 중소·영세·비정규직 노동자들은 수시로 구조조정을 겪으며 마른 걸레 쥐어짜이듯 쥐어 짜이고 있다. 이제 조직된 대공장 노동자들도 자신의 차례가 시한폭탄처럼 다가오고 있음을 느낀다. 하지만 중소·영세·비정규직 노동자들도 대공장 노동자들도 아직 반격의 통로를 제대로 찾고 있지는 못하다.



    하지만 어느 한 곳에서라도 단결투쟁으로 돌파구를 열어내고, 사생결단의 싸움을 조직한다면 노동자들의 분노는 활화산처럼 폭발할 수 있다. 이번 총선에서도 켜켜이 쌓인 대중의 분노와 변화 열망을 확인하지 않았던가? 무엇보다 노동자들은 자본가들을 위한 희생양이 되길 결코 원하지 않는다.



    구조조정, 피할 수 없다면 제대로 붙자! 모든 해고 금지, 비정규직 철폐의 깃발 아래 단결하자! 노동자 죽이기 구조조정을 단호히 거부하고, 모든 노동자를 살리기 위해 자본주의 헬조선을 노동자세상으로 ‘구조조정’하는 위대한 역사적 투쟁에 나서자.





    2016년 4월 23일

    혁명적노동자당건설현장투쟁위원회(노건투)

  • 노정투 2016.05.17 19:22 신고 수정/삭제 답글


    Will Bernie's Burnout Lead To A New Movement? Maybe, Maybe Not.

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    By Bruce A. Dixon, Black Agenda Report


    April 20, 2016



    Will there be a new movement born from the ashes of Bernie Sanders' failed campaign? Some think so, citing the broad popularity of his issues and the growing numbers of his core demographic. But few of those imagining new political formations outside the two capitalist parties talk much about how such movements and parties will be financed or led.

    What's going to happen when Bernie endorses Hillary Clinton? A springtime blizzard of articles and internet postings says some big fraction of Bernie's activists and voters won't work or vote for Hillary. But we all know what happens after springtime blizzards. The snow stops, the white stuff melts and the landscape changes.

    When it does Bernie will hand over his volunteer lists, fundraising, email and social media assets to Hillary. Most of Bernie's activists will get out the vote for the Democratic nominee against the greater evil that is President Trump, and most of Bernie's voters will follow. But a minority, a significant number will be disposed to do something else election day, or to help build something afterward. What about them?

    Most discussions of putting together a force outside and to the left of the Democratic party dwell on the issues and the demographics but fail to credibly explain how such a thing could be funded or to whom its leaders would be responsible. Democrat and Republican parties, politicians and all but a tiny number of campaigns are funded by the generous and more and more often the anonymous donations of wealthy corporations and individuals. Take the big easy money and your donors will, directly or indirectly determine your leadership. Don't take the money and you're broke, looking for new models of funding maybe leadership too.

    What about the hot new funding model: lots of small donations, reaped over the internet? To tell the truth except for the internet part this is an old model, not a new one --- religious congregations have long supported ministries and pastors, sometimes in opulent style, off the small donations of mostly poor people. But it's the leaders and big donors if they have any, who call the shots in these organizations, not the small donors.

    Moveon.org used to bill itself as an example of an outfit supported by tens of thousands of small donations, presumably from people of modest means. But MoveOn's leadership, like that of many organizations sustained by small donors are a self-selected and self-perpetuating crew. Its thousands of small donors cannot choose or un-choose the leaders, cannot determine or change its policies, any more than small donors to the NAACP or the Sierra Club both examples of places happy to take both large and small contributions.

    When people discuss the formation of political movements outside the Democratic party in this or any other season they like to talk about ideas and policies, but not so much about how to guarantee some semblance of small d democratic leadership of these movements, leadership responsible to members. The answer pretty much suggests itself. If your funders will inevitably choose your movement's leadership, and you need your leadership to be responsible to your rank and file members, then you need to have dues paying members as your principal funders.

    Membership funding, with organization structured so that leaders are directly accountable to, selected and un-selected by members. That's the model we should be exploring. This is the way genuine left and socialist parties and movements for the last hundred years have funded their operations all over world, a fact not much taught to so-called community organizers here.

    Until these old lessons about choosing internal democracy and membership funding over s big donors and self-perpetuating leaders are re-learned, it's hard to see how a new political movement left of the Democratic party will ever take hold and grow.

  • 노정투 2016.05.11 20:10 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    CP of Ireland, 71st anniversary of the defeat of German fascism [En]


    Monday, 09 May 2016 14:55 Communist Party of Ireland

    71st anniversary of the defeat of German fascism [En]


    “Not one step back!” (war cry of the Red Army)



    Seventy-one years ago this day, people of the world rejoiced together as the news of Nazi Germany’s capitulation reached their ears. Dancing, singing and hugging one another, they celebrated the defeat of German fascism.

    More than 35 million people died as a result of the war unleashed by fascism. Today we celebrate the 71st anniversary of its defeat.

    The Soviet Union lost approximately 20 million of its citizens in what the Soviet people call the Great Patriotic War. Soviet citizens came from all walks of life and every single republic within the USSR. Brigades of soldiers from the Far East fought alongside their Slavic Red Army counterparts in the name of socialism. Unity prevailed under the Red Flag as national and gender roles became irrelevant: all that mattered was that the people of the Soviet Union could stand shoulder to shoulder to throw back the Nazi hordes. That is exactly what they did.

    The damage dealt to the Soviet Union was on a scale never seen before: thousands of cities, towns and villages destroyed; roads, bridges, factories, hospitals and schools lay in ruins. During the occupation of Soviet lands the abuse of prisoners was rife, and an estimated 2 million prisoners of war perished in the conditions of the camps. Civilians in the occupied territories were routinely murdered, raped and robbed by death squads, made up of collaborators from the occupied countries operating under the Reich Main Security Office under Heinrich Himmler.

    Can we even begin to comprehend the gravity of the millions of civilians killed, and the toll this took on the Soviet Union as a whole? Even the “Western” governments could not deny the fortitude and resilience of the Soviet people, though this admiration quickly vanished after the war was won, with the rapid imposition of the “Cold War” for encircling and isolating the Soviet Union.

    The resilience and the standing of the Soviet Union in the eyes of the people of all countries for its role sent real ripples of fear through the hearts of the ruling classes around the world.

    The capitalist states have expended much time and energy, and many billions of dollars and euros, on rewriting the history of the Second World War. They continue to use anti-Sovietism as a strategic approach to distorting the people’s understanding of history and of events such as the war. They well know that if you can control and shape people’s historical understanding you can control how they understand events today and act tomorrow.

    The economic system that gave birth to fascism is still fertile. Fascism is still an important tool in their armoury, as we witness in Ukraine today, and western governments are not afraid to call it forth when it suits their economic, political and strategic interests.



    We commemorate this day as a victory for humanity!

    Communist Party of Ireland

  • 노정투 2016.05.11 20:10 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    CP of Ireland, 71st anniversary of the defeat of German fascism [En]


    Monday, 09 May 2016 14:55 Communist Party of Ireland

    71st anniversary of the defeat of German fascism [En]


    “Not one step back!” (war cry of the Red Army)



    Seventy-one years ago this day, people of the world rejoiced together as the news of Nazi Germany’s capitulation reached their ears. Dancing, singing and hugging one another, they celebrated the defeat of German fascism.

    More than 35 million people died as a result of the war unleashed by fascism. Today we celebrate the 71st anniversary of its defeat.

    The Soviet Union lost approximately 20 million of its citizens in what the Soviet people call the Great Patriotic War. Soviet citizens came from all walks of life and every single republic within the USSR. Brigades of soldiers from the Far East fought alongside their Slavic Red Army counterparts in the name of socialism. Unity prevailed under the Red Flag as national and gender roles became irrelevant: all that mattered was that the people of the Soviet Union could stand shoulder to shoulder to throw back the Nazi hordes. That is exactly what they did.

    The damage dealt to the Soviet Union was on a scale never seen before: thousands of cities, towns and villages destroyed; roads, bridges, factories, hospitals and schools lay in ruins. During the occupation of Soviet lands the abuse of prisoners was rife, and an estimated 2 million prisoners of war perished in the conditions of the camps. Civilians in the occupied territories were routinely murdered, raped and robbed by death squads, made up of collaborators from the occupied countries operating under the Reich Main Security Office under Heinrich Himmler.

    Can we even begin to comprehend the gravity of the millions of civilians killed, and the toll this took on the Soviet Union as a whole? Even the “Western” governments could not deny the fortitude and resilience of the Soviet people, though this admiration quickly vanished after the war was won, with the rapid imposition of the “Cold War” for encircling and isolating the Soviet Union.

    The resilience and the standing of the Soviet Union in the eyes of the people of all countries for its role sent real ripples of fear through the hearts of the ruling classes around the world.

    The capitalist states have expended much time and energy, and many billions of dollars and euros, on rewriting the history of the Second World War. They continue to use anti-Sovietism as a strategic approach to distorting the people’s understanding of history and of events such as the war. They well know that if you can control and shape people’s historical understanding you can control how they understand events today and act tomorrow.

    The economic system that gave birth to fascism is still fertile. Fascism is still an important tool in their armoury, as we witness in Ukraine today, and western governments are not afraid to call it forth when it suits their economic, political and strategic interests.



    We commemorate this day as a victory for humanity!

    Communist Party of Ireland

  • 불꽃 2016.05.09 23:28 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    The rise of Donald Trump: a revolt against the US establishment

    The anger of poor white workers in the US may be misdirected for now, but it is real and it is growing.



    The rise of Donald Trump, and his increasingly successful campaign to become the Republican Party’s nominee for the 2016 US presidential election, needs to be explained – a task in which the Republican elite has failed utterly.

    The imperialist media portray him as a gold-plated buffoon – a bigot and a racist, characterised by a complete disregard for civility and common decency, and he is undoubtedly all these things. He wants to deport millions of undocumented immigrants, to build a wall along the Mexican border, and, into the bargain, to make Mexico pay for this wall (he never quite explains how he will make Mexico foot the bill).

    He has branded Mexicans as rapists and criminals; he wants to ban the entry of muslims into the United States; he has tweeted a quotation from Mussolini and has drawn support from leading racists across the country. But none of these positions of his go far enough to explain his remarkable rise.

    As the angry Republican electorate rejects the establishment candidates, a significant section of the party’s elite, instead of blaming itself, blames his rise on the moral failings of those voting for him – certain sections of the US’s white working class. This moral failing, asserts the elite, is the product of welfare dependency, drug and alcohol addiction and family dysfunctionality, for which the white working class is solely responsible.

    Paul Ryan, the speaker of the House of Representatives, has warned of a social safety net that becomes “a hammock that lulls able-bodied people to lives of dependency and complacency”.

    Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate for the presidency in 2012, in an unguarded moment stated that 47 percent of voters would never support him because they “believe that the government has a responsibility to take care of them”.

    The thrust of this kind of reasoning is that the white working class faces a crisis, not of opportunity, but of values, brought about by welfare programmes that make life too easy on slackers.

    Trump, on the other hand, when he is not hurling insults or indulging in vulgarities, acknowledges many of the real problems facing the working class instead of lecturing it on its moral failings – an important reason why he is scoring victory after victory in the primaries to choose a Republican candidate for the 2016 presidential election.

    Although not much reported by the media, Trump devotes a good portion of his speeches to trade, sending a powerful message about free trade and its effects. It could even be his single biggest concern. He drives home the message that various free trade agreements, such as Nafta, signed by previous administrations, and approved by the Congress, have gutted US industry and destroyed US towns and livelihoods alike, adding that in the event of his being elected president, he would threaten CEOs with steep tariffs if they don’t move back to the US.

    He has threatened the lucrative drug industry by saying that he would “start competitive bidding” in this industry. He has criticised the military-industrial complex for forcing the government to buy lousy but expensive aeroplanes thanks to the power of the lobbyists. To the horror of the establishment, he has questioned the US’s continued role in Nato, because, he argues, the Americans can no longer afford it.

    As he is a billionaire, and therefore himself free from the power of the lobbyists and the mechanics of corrupt electoral campaign finance, he can, he argues, make ‘good’ deals on behalf of the electorate instead of ‘bad’ ones. There is little chance of that being realised, but the fact that he is expressing these sentiments provides the key to his popularity among the poor white working-class and lower-middle strata.

    Just as a map of his support may coordinate with racist Google searches, it coordinates to an even greater degree with areas of de-industrialisation and the consequent despair and destitution that three decades of Washington’s free-market consensus have visited on the vast masses of Americans. Thus, it can be seen that a tale of economic outrage is on the march.

    Many of his followers are bigots, but an even greater number are driven by his denunciations of trade agreements and by his promise to stamp hard on the CEOs who have fired workers by the thousands and wrecked their towns and cities, unlike Obama and Hillary Clinton, who defend these pacts.

    A study by Working America, an auxiliary of the AFL-CIO trade union federation, found strong support for Trump among white working-class voters in the suburbs of Cleveland and Pittsburgh in December 2015 and January 2016. These voters were motivated by their concern for good jobs and the economy, not by racism.

    “People are much more frightened than they are bigoted,” says Karen Nussbaum, the director of Working America, adding that “people are fed up, people are hurting, they are very distressed about the fact their kids don’t have a future” and that “there still hasn’t been a recovery from the recession, that every family still suffers from it in one way or another”. (Millions of ordinary Americans support Donald Trump. Here's why by Thomas Frank, The Guardian, 8 March 2016)

    The Democratic Party establishment generally ignores the working class in the belief that the latter has nowhere to go. Poor people see trade deals, which bring fabulous profits to the wealthy and ruin and misery to the masses; they see generous bailouts of the banking behemoths and guaranteed profits for insurance giants on the one hand, and the repossession of the houses of the less fortunate on the other.

    They cannot fail to notice that the banking giants and their complacent political servants have emerged with barely a scratch; that the dividends of globalisation have found their way to the richest one percent, leaving in their wake millions with ruined lives, broken homes, destitution, squalor and degradation. Unable to see through the workings of monopoly capitalism, its victims quite naturally blame everything on the elites, or on their fellow workers in China and other developing countries.

    The message of Donald Trump, no matter how shallow and superficial, or how objectionably made, resonates with these people when he says that “we have rebuilt China and yet our country is falling apart. Our infrastructure is falling apart ... our airports are, like, Third World”.

    There is a powerful backlash against the export of capital. In the final analysis, this is a backlash against the entire mode of existence of imperialism – of finance capital – which cannot exist without this export. Of course, neither Trump nor his followers understand this finer point. All the same, the instincts of the working people are quite correct against a system which deprives them of the means of their livelihoods and makes their lives a hell on earth.

    As for the establishment critics of Donald Trump, they find it much easier to blame the voters for their bigotry than look reality in the face – a reality of which Trump is no more than a crude and ugly expression.

    The reality is that Trump’s followers are a segment of the population whose participation in the labour market is decreasing year by year, whose life expectancy is declining, who are stuck in blighted neighbourhoods by negative activity and among whom there is a significant rise in disability benefits.

    Seventy percent of Americans still claim to be christians. Of these, about 80 million are evangelicals, but only 27 million of them voted in the last election. The surprising fact is that, ignoring their own moral code of conduct, a considerable portion of them are supporting the thrice-divorced, rude, crude and vulgar Mr Trump.

    This is another indicator that even among this group of people, economic reality takes precedence over deeply-held religiosity. Once again, what we are faced with is a revolt of the white lower and middle strata against the establishment – and the evangelicals are a core of this revolt. (See Why Donald Trump is tearing evangelicals apart by Michelle Boorstein, The Washington Post, 15 March 2016)

    Campaign corruption

    What is more, huge numbers of Americans are beginning to see through the racket that passes for the ‘democratic’ political process in the US, where only extreme wealth or access to it gives success in American politics, and where the chief executive of US imperialism – the president – and its legislators are literally bought by Wall Street and the richest families of the land.

    In the 2008 election, Obama raised $750m, of which $280m was spent on television advertising. In the current (2016) election, spending on political television advertising is projected to reach $4.4bn for federal races alone, up from $3.8bn in 2012. The next president will have raised and spent a sum close to $1bn.

    Most of this money comes from the wealthiest of Americans – a tiny proportion of the population. In January 2015, conservative brothers Charles and David Koch of Koch Industries, along with their political allies, announced their intention to splash out $889m in the 2016 presidential and congressional elections – a sum equivalent to the election spending of the Republican and Democratic parties combined.

    According to the New York Times, in the first months of the 2016 presidential cycle, 158 families and the companies they own or control contributed $176m to candidates in both major parties. This $176m accounted for nearly half of all the ‘early money’ raised in the 2016 presidential campaign. “These donors are overwhelmingly white, rich, older and male, in a nation that is being remade by the young, by women, and by all black and brown votes.

    “And they reside in an archipelago of wealth, exclusive neighbourhoods dotting a handful of cities and towns.” (The families funding the 2016 presidential election by Nicholas Confessore, Sarah Cohen and Karen Yourish, 10 October 2015)

    The candidate who manages to raise the most financial contributions in the year before the actual voting (or, as in the case of Trump, has plenty of his own wealth) usually wins the nomination, as he is able to generate the greatest volume of media advertising. Of the $150bn spent on advertising in the US, 20 percent (ie, £30bn) is accounted for by political advertising. Hillary Clinton has raised $159.9m and Republican Jeb Bush (who has since pulled out of the race) $133m.

    No wonder this state of affairs gives rise to public cynicism, reflected in 2014 congressional and state elections that drew an abysmally low voter turnout of 36.9 percent.

    Eight of the last ten US presidents were millionaires before they were elected, as are roughly half of the 535 members of the present Congress.

    Attempts to block Trump

    Attempts by the political and media elite to block Trump’s path to the presidential nomination of the Republican Party have gathered pace. The political and media establishments, which are criminally responsible for colossal amounts of destruction, decadence and degradation, have resolved to join forces against Trump, claiming that he stands for morally abhorrent positions which go beyond the bounds of decency. They agree further that he is personally so repulsive that, if he were to become the president, he would degrade the country and the office of president.

    Undoubtedly, many of these accusations are correct, but in most cases his accusers have long practised similar policies, albeit with far less candour.

    Five dozen or so extreme right-wingers calling themselves “members of the Republican national security community” have published an ‘open letter’ condemning Trump on the ground that “his own statements lead us to conclude that as president he would use the authority of his office to act in ways that make America less safe, and which would diminish our standing in the world”. As an example of this charge, they cite Trump’s embrace of “expansive use of torture”, which, they say, is “inexcusable”.

    The key to this charge is the word ‘expansive’, for the people who signed this letter are not in a position to say that torture by itself is ‘inexcusable’. Indeed, most of them presided over torture while in office or gave vocal support to its practice. Obviously, to use the words of Glenn Greenwald: “they invoke the Goldilocks theory of torture: we believe in torture up to exactly the right point, while Trump is disgraceful because he wants to go beyond that: he believes in ‘the expansive use of torture’”! (Donald Trump’s policies are not anathema to US mainstream but an uncomfortable reflection of it, Information Clearing House, 4 March 2016)

    Jumping on the bandwagon, Mitt Romney, in a wildly cheered speech, and turning a blind eye on his own pro-torture stance, denounced Donald Trump for advocating torture.

    Most of those signing the open letter are guilty of overseeing or colluding with torture, kidnappings, indefinite detention, war crimes, and illegal war on, and the wanton destruction of, Iraq – with its Abu Ghraib torture centre, millions of deaths and even greater number of internally and externally displaced citizens.

    It is clear as daylight that Trump’s advocacy of torture, far from disqualifying him, is actually quite mainstream, and is willingly embraced by the US political, business and military elite, as well as by large sections of the American population. Torture, even if euphemistically christened ‘enhanced interrogation methods’, has been official US policy for years.

    Many highly placed officials who presided over torture and defended it – from Condoleezza Rice to John Brennan – continue to be virtually revered in respectable mainstream circles. Besides, Trump rivals Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio (before he dropped out of the race) both refused to rule out a bar on torture techniques if they were elected as president. In view of this, Trump’s openly pro-torture stance does not put him beyond the American pale. On the contrary, it places him firmly within the mainstream of the US establishment.

    Michael Hayden, George Bush’s National Security Adviser and CIA chief, expressed outrage at Trump’s suggestion that family members of terrorists should be killed. He asserted that US military personnel would never follow Trump’s orders if these involved committing war crimes such as torturing detainees or killing a terrorist’s family members. On being asked about this, Trump insisted that the military are “not going to refuse. Believe me ...”

    Pretending to be shocked and outraged by Trump’s statement, even a war criminal such as Ari Fleischer, the torture and war propagandist of the Bush White House, joined the fray, saying: “Trump is wrong when he says the military will do whatever he tells them. They’ll resign before carrying out what they think is an illegal order.”

    The truth that Trump is right, however, is proved by going no further back than the 14-year long ‘war on terror’, during which, with a handful of honourable exceptions, there has been no dearth of people in the military, the CIA and those working for private contractors, who have routinely committed the most bestial acts of war criminality.

    General Taguba, the military official in charge of investigating war on terror policies, had this to say on this score in 2008: “After years of disclosures by government investigations, media accounts and reports from human rights organisations, there is no longer any doubt as to whether the current administration has committed war crimes. The only question to be answered is whether those who ordered the use of torture will be held to account.”

    In 2009, General Barry McCaffrey admitted: “We torture people unmercifully. We probably murdered dozens of them during the course of that, both the armed forces and the CIA.”

    The assertion that the US armed forces will defy the Commander-in-Chief if ordered to carry out illegal acts is simply laughable. Indeed, the fate of Bradley Manning and other conscientious objectors has provided a graphic warning to any soldiers who are thinking of refusing such criminal orders.

    As to Trump’s proposed killing of family members of terrorists, denials notwithstanding, this has been done routinely for decades, both by the US and by its attack dog in the Middle East, Israel. Time after time, their armed forces have bombed homes on the pretext that some terrorist was hiding in them, in the process killing entire families.

    In 2011, a US drone strike assassinated US national Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen; two weeks later, another drone strike killed his 16-year old son, Abdulrahman, also a US citizen. Although no one claimed that the youngster was in any way involved in terrorist activity, Robert Gibbs, former White House press secretary and a senior adviser to President Obama’s re-election campaign, flippantly justified this blatant murder by saying that he should have “had a more responsible father”.

    US drone attacks have killed thousands of innocent people over the last four years. The Obama administration keeps a kill list that it uses to determine whose body should next be blown apart. There is no point in saying that Trump is suggesting something that the sensitive and civilised souls at the helm of the US administration and the US armed forces have never entertained, let alone carried out.

    The only difference is that, while Trump says these things openly, crudely and candidly, the US government and military actually routinely puts them into practice while feigning not to. That is merely a difference of style and not of substance.

    Other policies

    Further, even though Trump advocates the commission of war crimes, he also from time to time advocates policies that are far less militarist and warmongering than those of his GOP (‘grand old party’, ie, Republican) rivals, as well as the warmongering leading Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton.

    Trump undoubtedly annoyed the zionist lobby by suggesting that he would be neutral in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, for example – a sea change from the traditional US stance of unreserved support for every Israeli crime, for its every act of oppression and repression of the Palestinian people. However, he has gone back on this since then.

    Speaking at the annual conference of pro-zionist lobby group AIPAC on 21 March, however, Trump came out unequivocally in support of Israel. The speech he made would have gladdened the heart of the leading zionists in Israel and abroad. In the same speech, he said that on becoming president, his priority would be to dismantle the “disastrous” nuclear agreement with Iran reached by the Obama administration.

    He has upset a lot of the elite by saying that the Iraq war was waged on the basis of patent lies. And he has angered a lot of US warmongers by indicating that he would work with Russian president Vladimir Putin, just as the US ruling class is busy demonising the Russian leader and attempting, albeit said unsuccessfully, to isolate him.

    Lots of the Republican elite are unhappy with his endorsement of the Obamacare legislation on health.

    Racism

    Trump is accused of being a racist and a bigot, which sure enough he is, but this doesn’t make him any different from the Republican elite or from a goodly part of its Democratic counterpart. It is just that Trump wears his bigotry on his shirtsleeve, while the Republican elite have generally preferred to practise the same craft by methods more subtle and deceptive.

    In the words of Mr Edward Luce of the Financial Times: “For decades key Republican strategists have used a dog-whistle to play on racial fears. It should come as no surprise that someone like Mr Trump would one day swap it for a megaphone.” (Trump’s popularity is icing on a cake that was already baked, 7 March 2016)

    Whether Donald Trump or someone else gets the nomination of his party, the demographics of the US electorate have changed so as to almost guarantee victory for the Democratic candidate. African-Americans now constitute 12.9 percent of the US population and Hispanics 17 percent. The Republicans have so offended Hispanics and African-Americans, not to speak of their tirades against women, that they are unlikely to get many votes from these sections of the electorate.

    In the last presidential election, Mitt Romney received only 25 percent of the Hispanic vote and a mere 6 percent of the African-American. For the Republican candidate to win the presidency, he has to secure at least 70 percent of the votes of the white electorate – a very difficult target indeed.

    There is further trouble brewing in the Republican camp. If Donald Trump doesn’t secure the magical number of 1,237 delegates needed for an outright win to secure his party’s nomination, the Republican convention will declare an ‘open contest’ – a situation in which the grandees of the party could deny the nomination to Trump.

    In that event, there is a good chance that the Republican Party would be blown apart into warring factions and make way for the vainglorious Trump to stand as a third-party candidate, thus doubly ensuring the defeat of the Republicans.

    Finally, on the fact that Trump is vulgar, rude and possessed of revolting personal characteristics, one can but note that, although all these things have been well known for decades, they have presented no barrier to his integration into the power and celebrity circles of the US, including by those who now suddenly pretend to be offended by him. All he has done is to have taken the vulgarity and decadence of the dying, moribund and parasitic US imperialism to its absurd logical limits.

    “Where else,” wrote Mr Philip Stephens, “but the US, with all its brash vulgarity, would you find someone bidding for the nation’s highest office publicly boasting about the size of his penis?” (Trump has friends across the Atlantic, Financial Times,11 March 2016)

    He is like a mirror, which reflects their own faces and the system they represent.

    We conclude this article with the following words of journalist Glenn Greenwald: “In the past few weeks, there has been a tidal wave of establishment denunciations of Donald Trump ... But very few of those denunciations contain any real examination of what accounts for his popularity and appeal: why a message grounded in contempt for the establishment resonates so strongly, why anxiety and anger levels are so high that the ground is so fertile ... for the persona he represents.

    “That’s because answering that question requires what the US establishment guardians most fear and hate: self-examination.” (Information Clearing House, op cit)

    Postscript: A similar rejection of the establishment is also expressing itself in the Democratic camp, in the form of support for Bernie Sanders. That, however, would require another article, which we shall leave to a future issue.

  • 불꽃 2016.05.08 18:15 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    Veranstaltung zum Jahrestag des Großen Antifaschistischen Sieges


    Wir lernen, bereiten uns auf die kommenden Entwicklungen vor und schaffen eine KKE, die in der Lage ist, unter allen Umständen, bei „Wind und Wetter“ zu kämpfen.


    „Wir lassen uns inspirieren – wir lernen – wir setzen den Kampf fort… und wir werden siegen!“ – Dies war die Losung und die Selbstverpflichtung der Teilnehmenden der Veranstaltung der KKE in Athen zum Jahrestag des Großen Antifaschistischen Sieges. Es war eine Veranstaltung der Parteiorganisation Attikas der KKE am Donnerstag, den 9. Mai, mit zahlreichen Teilnehmern, darunter vielen jungen Menschen, aber auch von Widerstandskämpferinnen und -kämpfern. Sie fand am Schießübungsplatz in Kesariani statt, einem Ort, der hohe symbolische Bedeutung für den Kampf gegen den Faschismus besitzt: dort wurden im Jahre 1944 200 Kommunisten von den Faschisten hingerichtet.


    Vergleichbare Veranstaltungen fanden in Dutzenden Städten im ganzen Land statt.


    An der politisch-kulturellen Veranstaltung nahm auch in Begleitung einer vielköpfigen Parteidelegation der Generalsekretär des ZK der KKE Dimitris Koutsoumbas teil, der Blumen am Mahnmal der erschossenen Kommunisten am Schießübungsplatz niederlegte. Christos Tsintzilonis, der Vorsitzende der PEAEA-DSE (Landesweite Vereinigung der Kämpfer des Nationalen Widerstands und der Demokratischen Armee Griechenlands), richtete ein Grußwort an die Anwesenden. Darauf folgte eine musikalisch-theatralische Darbietung, die dem antifaschistischen Kampf der Völker gewidmet war, zu dem die kommunistischen Parteien ebenso wie die Sowjetunion und die Rote Armee einen besonderen Beitrag leisteten.


    Die Hauptrede hielt Kostas Paraskevas, Mitglied des Politbüros des ZK und Sekretär der Parteiorganisation Attikas, der u.a. betonte:


    „Wir streben danach, die riesige koordinierte Offensive der schwarzen Lügenpropaganda der imperialistischen Zentren, die die Geschichte umschreiben wollen, gebührend zu beantworten. In ihrem Versuch, den Faschismus mit dem Kommunismus gleichzusetzen, unternehmen sie den denkbar schmutzigsten Feldzug der Verleumdung. Sie wissen, dass sie die ethischen Grundlagen der kommunistischen Bewegung nicht angreifen können…



    Die faschistische Bestie war damals und ist heute ein Geschöpf des kapitalistischen Systems, es entspringt aus dem Herzen des Systems und steht nicht, wie sie es darstellen wollen, außerhalb desselben. Der Faschismus ist die extreme Stimme des Kapitals, die immer dann benutzt wird, wenn die Forderungen des Kapitals und seine Strategie zur Neuverteilung der Welt unter den Bedingungen der bürgerlichen parlamentarischen Demokratie nicht mehr befriedigt werden können“.



    Der Redner unterstrich, dass „sich bestätigt hat, dass die objektiven Bedingungen, dass die Wirtschaftskrise und die allgemeine Krise des bürgerlichen Systems nicht automatisch zu Entwicklungen führen, die dem Volk nutzen. Im Gegenteil können sie auch zu einem Rückschritt im Bewusstsein führen und zur Entstehung reaktionärer Massenbewegungen. Eine Reihe unbezweifelbarer Tatsachen beweisen, dass der Faschismus eine Option der Bourgeoisien war und zwar nicht nur als Schlag- und Terrortruppe gegen die Volksbewegung, sondern auch zur Ausführung der bürgerlichen Klassenherrschaft. (…) Die Chrysi Avgi („Goldene Morgendämmerung“) kann man nicht mit einer sogenannten antifaschistischen Front oder einer Front des „verfassungstreuen Spektrums“ bekämpfen, d.h. vom Standpunkt der Verteidigung der bürgerlichen Demokratie, sondern nur durch die antimonopolistische, antikapitalistische Bewegung, die die Strategie der Monopole angreift. Dies schließt auch den imperialistischen Krieg ein, egal von wo er ausgeht, ob er ein Angriffs- oder Verteidigungskrieg im Interesse des Kapitals ist.

    Chrysi Avgi kann nur durch das Volksbündnis der Arbeiterklasse, der armen Bäuerinnen und Bauern und Selbstständigen bekämpft werden. Dieses Bündnis wird den Liberalismus und die Sozialdemokratie bekämpfen, ebenso wie den Nazismus der Chrysi Avgi. Darin liegt die Lösung und nicht im Bündnis mit bürgerlichen Parteien und der neuen oder alten Sozialdemokratie.“

    Abschließend betonte der Redner: „Die KKE hat diese Erfahrungen, weil sie den Kampf des Nationalen Widerstands, der Demokratischen Armee Griechenlands angeführt und das Volk zum Kampf inspiriert hat. Sie hat aus ihren Fehlern gelernt. Eine der wichtigsten Lektionen ist, dass die kommunistische und Arbeiterbewegung ideologisch-politisch und organisatorisch vorbereitet sein muss, unabhängig von den jeweiligen Phasen der Bewegung zu arbeiten, um die Macht einzufordern und zu erringen.“


  • 불꽃 2016.05.08 18:15 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    Veranstaltung zum Jahrestag des Großen Antifaschistischen Sieges


    Wir lernen, bereiten uns auf die kommenden Entwicklungen vor und schaffen eine KKE, die in der Lage ist, unter allen Umständen, bei „Wind und Wetter“ zu kämpfen.


    „Wir lassen uns inspirieren – wir lernen – wir setzen den Kampf fort… und wir werden siegen!“ – Dies war die Losung und die Selbstverpflichtung der Teilnehmenden der Veranstaltung der KKE in Athen zum Jahrestag des Großen Antifaschistischen Sieges. Es war eine Veranstaltung der Parteiorganisation Attikas der KKE am Donnerstag, den 9. Mai, mit zahlreichen Teilnehmern, darunter vielen jungen Menschen, aber auch von Widerstandskämpferinnen und -kämpfern. Sie fand am Schießübungsplatz in Kesariani statt, einem Ort, der hohe symbolische Bedeutung für den Kampf gegen den Faschismus besitzt: dort wurden im Jahre 1944 200 Kommunisten von den Faschisten hingerichtet.


    Vergleichbare Veranstaltungen fanden in Dutzenden Städten im ganzen Land statt.


    An der politisch-kulturellen Veranstaltung nahm auch in Begleitung einer vielköpfigen Parteidelegation der Generalsekretär des ZK der KKE Dimitris Koutsoumbas teil, der Blumen am Mahnmal der erschossenen Kommunisten am Schießübungsplatz niederlegte. Christos Tsintzilonis, der Vorsitzende der PEAEA-DSE (Landesweite Vereinigung der Kämpfer des Nationalen Widerstands und der Demokratischen Armee Griechenlands), richtete ein Grußwort an die Anwesenden. Darauf folgte eine musikalisch-theatralische Darbietung, die dem antifaschistischen Kampf der Völker gewidmet war, zu dem die kommunistischen Parteien ebenso wie die Sowjetunion und die Rote Armee einen besonderen Beitrag leisteten.


    Die Hauptrede hielt Kostas Paraskevas, Mitglied des Politbüros des ZK und Sekretär der Parteiorganisation Attikas, der u.a. betonte:


    „Wir streben danach, die riesige koordinierte Offensive der schwarzen Lügenpropaganda der imperialistischen Zentren, die die Geschichte umschreiben wollen, gebührend zu beantworten. In ihrem Versuch, den Faschismus mit dem Kommunismus gleichzusetzen, unternehmen sie den denkbar schmutzigsten Feldzug der Verleumdung. Sie wissen, dass sie die ethischen Grundlagen der kommunistischen Bewegung nicht angreifen können…



    Die faschistische Bestie war damals und ist heute ein Geschöpf des kapitalistischen Systems, es entspringt aus dem Herzen des Systems und steht nicht, wie sie es darstellen wollen, außerhalb desselben. Der Faschismus ist die extreme Stimme des Kapitals, die immer dann benutzt wird, wenn die Forderungen des Kapitals und seine Strategie zur Neuverteilung der Welt unter den Bedingungen der bürgerlichen parlamentarischen Demokratie nicht mehr befriedigt werden können“.



    Der Redner unterstrich, dass „sich bestätigt hat, dass die objektiven Bedingungen, dass die Wirtschaftskrise und die allgemeine Krise des bürgerlichen Systems nicht automatisch zu Entwicklungen führen, die dem Volk nutzen. Im Gegenteil können sie auch zu einem Rückschritt im Bewusstsein führen und zur Entstehung reaktionärer Massenbewegungen. Eine Reihe unbezweifelbarer Tatsachen beweisen, dass der Faschismus eine Option der Bourgeoisien war und zwar nicht nur als Schlag- und Terrortruppe gegen die Volksbewegung, sondern auch zur Ausführung der bürgerlichen Klassenherrschaft. (…) Die Chrysi Avgi („Goldene Morgendämmerung“) kann man nicht mit einer sogenannten antifaschistischen Front oder einer Front des „verfassungstreuen Spektrums“ bekämpfen, d.h. vom Standpunkt der Verteidigung der bürgerlichen Demokratie, sondern nur durch die antimonopolistische, antikapitalistische Bewegung, die die Strategie der Monopole angreift. Dies schließt auch den imperialistischen Krieg ein, egal von wo er ausgeht, ob er ein Angriffs- oder Verteidigungskrieg im Interesse des Kapitals ist.

    Chrysi Avgi kann nur durch das Volksbündnis der Arbeiterklasse, der armen Bäuerinnen und Bauern und Selbstständigen bekämpft werden. Dieses Bündnis wird den Liberalismus und die Sozialdemokratie bekämpfen, ebenso wie den Nazismus der Chrysi Avgi. Darin liegt die Lösung und nicht im Bündnis mit bürgerlichen Parteien und der neuen oder alten Sozialdemokratie.“

    Abschließend betonte der Redner: „Die KKE hat diese Erfahrungen, weil sie den Kampf des Nationalen Widerstands, der Demokratischen Armee Griechenlands angeführt und das Volk zum Kampf inspiriert hat. Sie hat aus ihren Fehlern gelernt. Eine der wichtigsten Lektionen ist, dass die kommunistische und Arbeiterbewegung ideologisch-politisch und organisatorisch vorbereitet sein muss, unabhängig von den jeweiligen Phasen der Bewegung zu arbeiten, um die Macht einzufordern und zu erringen.“


  • 노정투 2016.05.07 20:40 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    붉은 별


    Rediscovery 아고라 재발견총서 4권. 레닌과 함께 러시아 사회민주노동당을 이끌었던 혁명가이자 과학자였던 보그다노프가 1908년에 발표한 SF소설이 국내에 처음으로 완역되었다. 화성인들에게 초대되어, 수십 년 전에 공산주의 사회가 건설된 화성을 방문하게 된 한 남자의 사랑과 갈등, 투쟁을 그리고 있다.

    '최초의 사회주의 공상과학 소설'로 불리는 이 작품은 1917년 러시아 혁명이 이루어지기 전에 이미 사회주의가 어떤 모습으로 구현될지, 어떤 한계와 어려움에 부딪히게 될지를 예견했다. 또한 로켓공학의 선구자인 치올코프스키가 로켓 설계도를 발표한 것보다 7년이나 앞서 핵 광자 로켓을 이용한 우주 비행 이야기를 풀어낸 소설이기도 하다.



    붉은 별
    엔지니어 메니
    지구에 좌초된 화성인
    옮긴이 후기


    P.51~52 : 나는 우주를 응시하며 내 고향을 보지 못한다는 것에 슬픔을 느꼈다. 그곳에는 삶과 투쟁, 강렬한 고통이 가득했고, 어제까지만 해도 나는 고향의 동지들 곁에 있었다. 그리고 이제는 아마 다른 이가 내 자리를 차지했으리라. 마음속 깊숙한 곳에서 의심이 뭉게뭉게 피어올랐다.
    “내가 두고 온 곳에서는 피가 흘려지고 있었습니다.”
    내가 말했다.
    “하지만 여기에서는 어제의 혁명가가 그저 차분한 관찰자로 머물러 있군요.”
    “사람들은 더 나은 미래를 위해 피를 흘립니다.”
    네티가 대답했다.
    “하지만 계속 투쟁하기 위해서는 그 미래를 ‘알아야’ 하지요. 그것을 위해 당신이 이곳에 있는 겁니다.”

    P.90 : “과거의 유산이 여전히 강력한 힘을 발휘하고 있는 걸 보실 수 있을 거예요.”
    교육자가 미소를 띠고 말했다.
    “우리 사회주의는 완성된 것으로 보이죠. 우리는 아이들에게 아무것도 부정할 필요가 없어요. 사적 소유권의 개념이 불거질 여지가 없지요. 그렇지만 아까 보셨듯이 아이는 난데없이 ‘내’ 배, ‘내가 만든’ 배에 대해 이야기합니다. 이런 일은 매우 자주 일어나고, 가끔은 싸움으로 끝나기도 해요. 이를 도울 수 있는 방법은 없어요. 삶의 보편적인 법칙에 따르면 생명의 발전은 종의 발전을 축약된 형태로 반복합니다. 이와 유사하게 개체의 발전은 사회의 발전을 답습하죠.”


    P.163~164 : “서로 다른 시기에 서로 다른 국가에서 여러 개의 혁명이 발생할 것입니다. 심지어 이는 여러 면에서 같은 성질을 공유하고 있지도 않을 것이지만, 핵심은 그 결과가 예측할 수 없으며 불안정하다는 것입니다. 지배계급은 군대와 복잡한 군사 기술에 의존할 것이고, 특정 경우에는 반란을 일으키는 프롤레타리아에게 이를 사용함으로써 몇 개의 주요 국가에서 적어도 몇십 년간은 사회주의가 이루어지지 않을 것입니다. 이런 예는 이미 지구 역사에 기록된 바 있습니다.
    이런 일이 일어난다면 사회주의화된 몇 개의 선진국들은 공격적인 자본주의자들, 아니 전자본주의적 바다에 떠 있는 섬과 같은 모습이 될 것입니다. 사회주의 국가가 아닌 나라의 상류계급은 혹여 자신들의 권력이 줄어들까 우려하여 이 섬들을 없애는 데 계속해서 총력을 기울일 것입니다.”

    - 한겨레 신문 2016년 4월 8일자 '문학 새책'


    저자 : 알렉산드르 보그다노프



    최근작 : <붉은 별>
    소개 :

    레닌과 함께 러시아 사회민주노동당을 창당했던 사회주의 혁명가. 레닌의 절친한 동지이자 라이벌이었으며, 철학자이자 경제학자, 물리학자이기도 했다. 1873년에 태어났으며, 본명은 말리노프스키(Malinovskii)다. 모스크바 대학 자연계열에 입학했으나 재학 중 체포되어 졸업을 하지는 못했으며, 이후 하르코프 대학 의학대학을 졸업했다. 1890년대부터 혁명 운동에 참여했고, 당 중앙위원을 역임하는 등 1903년부터 1907년까지 볼셰비키의 주요 멤버로 활약했다.

    1905년 1차 러시아 혁명 이후부터 실천과 이론 양 측면에서 레닌과 대립했으며, 부르주아 군주제로 변신한 차르 정권의 반동적 두마에서는 활동할 의미가 없으므로 당 소속 의원들을 소환해야 한다는 ‘소환파’의 지도자로서 레닌과 각을 세웠다. 한편 그는 에른스트 마하의 영향을 받아 경험일원론을 주장했는데, 레닌은 『유물론과 경험비판론Materialism and Empiro-Criticism』(1908년)에서 보그다노프가 『경험일원론Empiriomonizm』(3권, 1904∼1906년)을 통해 표명한 사상은 변증법적 유물론을 부정한 관념론적 이데올로기에 불과하다고 거세게 비판했다. 레닌은 1907년에 보그다노프와 그의 무리를 볼셰비키에서 제명했는데, 이때 보그다노프는 자신들이야말로 진정한 볼셰비키이며 레닌은 원칙을 잃고 우경화되고 있다고 주장했다. 이후 그는 이탈리아의 카프리 섬에 ‘당 학교’를 설립했는데 막심 고리키도 참여했던 이 교육기관의 활동이 해당 행위라는 이유로 1909년 당에서 완전히 제명되었다.

    1917년 혁명 후에는 모스크바 대학 경제학 교수로 일하기도 했으며, ‘프롤레트쿨트’라는 문화운동 조직을 만들어 프롤레타리아만의 특수하고 독창적인 문화를 건설하려 했다. 1928년 갑작스런 죽음을 맞이했는데, 당시 모스크바 수혈연구소장이었던 그가 수혈 실험을 하던 중 사망했다고 알려졌다. 이를 두고 호사가들은 그가 영생을 얻기 위해 온몸의 피를 젊은이의 피로 바꾸려다가 죽은 것이라고 입방아를 찧었고, 그런 방식으로 자살을 한 것이라고 추측되기도 했다. 하지만 당시의 상황을 고려하면 암살당한 것이었을 가능성이 크다.

  • 불꽃 2016.05.07 20:32 신고 수정/삭제 답글

    자본 3-하

    지난 여름 갑작스럽게 타계한 한국의 대표적 마르크스 경제학자 고 김수행 교수가 마지막까지 심혈을 기울인 마르크스 <자본론>의 전면 개역판. <자본론>은 자본주의에 대한 철저한 분석과 비판을 통해 착취와 억압의 체제를 넘어선 새로운 사회를 향해 나아가고자 했던 마르크스의 이론적, 사상적 정수를 담고 있다.

    기존 번역본에서 지적되었던 어색한 표현들과 오역, 오탈자를 꼼꼼히 수정하고 한자식, 영어식 표현을 쉬운 우리말로 바꾸었다. 각국의 <자본론> 출판 작업의 최신 성과들을 취합해서 본문과 역자주에 반영하였고, 각 권의 참고문헌과 인명해설, 찾아보기 등을 통합, 별도의 책으로 펴냄으로써, 일반 독자들은 물론 전문 연구자들도 더 쉽게 참조, 연구할 수 있도록 했다.

    <2015년의 개역에 부쳐>
    <제1차 개역을 마치면서> (2004)
    <한글 초판 번역을 끝내면서> (1990)

    제5편 이윤이 이자와 기업가이득으로 분할. 이자낳는 자본(계속)
    제29장 은행자본의 구성부분
    제30장 화폐적 자본과 현실적 자본 (Ⅰ)
    제31장 화폐적 자본과 현실적 자본 (Ⅱ)
    제1절 화폐가 대부자본으로 전환
    제2절 자본 또는 수입이 대부자본으로 전환되는 화폐로 전환한다
    제32장 화폐적 자본과 현실적 자본 (Ⅲ)
    제33장 신용제도 아래의 유통수단
    제34장 통화주의와 영국의 1844년 은행법
    제35장 귀금속과 환율
    제1절 금준비의 변동
    제2절 환 율
    아시아에 대한 환율
    영국의 무역수지
    제36장 자본주의 이전의 관계
    중세의 이자
    이자 금지가 교회에 준 이익

    제6편 초과이윤이 지대로 전환
    제37장 서 론
    제38장 차액지대. 개설
    제39장 차액지대의 제1형태(차액지대Ⅰ)
    제40장 차액지대의 제2형태(차액지대Ⅱ)
    제41장 차액지대Ⅱ: 첫째 예. 생산가격이 불변인 경우
    제42장 차액지대Ⅱ: 둘째 예. 생산가격이 하락하는 경우
    제1절 추가자본의 생산성이 불변인 경우
    제2절 추가자본의 생산성이 저하하는 경우
    제3절 추가자본의 생산성이 상승하는 경우
    제43장 차액지대Ⅱ: 셋째 예. 생산가격이 상승하는 경우. 결론
    제44장 최열등지에서도 생기는 차액지대
    제45장 절대지대
    제46장 건축지지대. 광산지대. 토지가격
    제47장 자본주의적 지대의 기원
    제1절 서 론
    제2절 노동지대
    제3절 생산물지대
    제4절 화폐지대
    제5절 분익소작과 소농민적 분할지 소유

    제7편 수입들과 그들의 원천
    제48장 삼위일체의 공식
    제49장 생산과정의 분석을 위하여
    제50장 경쟁이 창조하는 환상
    제51장 분배관계와 생산관계
    제52장 계급들

    엥겔스: 「자본론」 제3권에 대한 보충설명

    Ⅰ. 가치법칙과 이윤율
    Ⅱ. 증권거래소


    저자 : 카를 마르크스 (Karl Heinrich Marx)

    최근작 : <공산주의 선언>,<자본론 부록>,<자본론 3 - 하> … 총 149종 (모두보기)
    소개 :

    프로이센의 트리어에서 태어나 유대인 변호사인 아버지와 네덜란드 출신의 어머니 밑에서 자랐다. 유대인이 감당해야 하는 사회적 편견과 차별을 몸소 겪으며 유년 시절을 보냈지만 성장 후에는 소속된 사회에 동화되기보다 유대인으로서의 이방인 기질과 이에 연유한 예리한 지성을 무기로 사회에 날카로운 비판의 칼날을 겨눴다. 대학에서는 법학을 공부했으나 문학과 철학, 역사에 더 많은 관심을 가졌고 스물아홉 살부터 헤겔 철학을 본격적으로 연구하기 시작했다. 베를린 대학 강사로 활동하던 브루노 바우어를 비롯한 청년헤겔학파와의 지적 교류를 통해 헤겔 좌파의 급진 사상에 영향을 받았다. 당시 프로이센 정부의 보수적인 정책 기류 탓에 대학 강단에서지 못하고 《라인 신문》의 편집장으로 활동했다. 프로이센 정부의 검열 강도가 계속해서 심해지자 파리로 망명해 청년헤겔학파의 일원인 아르놀트 루게와 《독불 연보》를 발간했고 여기에 《유대인 문제에 관하여》 등을 포함한 급진적인 기고문을 다수 게재했다. 하지만 헤겔 사상과 청년헤겔학파가 관념적 급진성에만 머물러 있을뿐이라는 진단을 내린 후에는 헤겔의 급진주의에 결별을 선언하고 현실에 관한 경제적 연구로 나아가 독자적인 사상을 구축하기 시작했다.
    파리에서 만난 엥겔스와 평생에 걸쳐 학문 활동을 함께했으며 프로이센 정부의 압력으로 파리에서까지 추방당한 후에는 당국의 공격을 피하기 위해 프로이센 국적을 포기하고 죽을 때까지 무국적자로 살았다. 1845년에 브뤼셀로 거처를 옮겨 엥겔스와 함께 《독일 이데올로기》를 출간했고 프로이센의 탄압이 브뤼셀까지 이어지자 1847년 영국으로 망명해 남은 생의 대부분을 런던에서 보냈다. 런던에서는 엥겔스와 함께 공산당연합의 당 강령인 《공산당선언》을 발표했고 이후에는 대작 《자본》등을 집필하며 여생을 연구에 전념했다.



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