Nezavisnost and the European Trade Union Confederation

Philip Ferguson plf13 at SPAMit.canterbury.ac.nz
Mon Oct 30 16:06:20 MST 2000


Nice post, Louis.

It amazes me how, after the evolution of Solidarity (which at least started
out as a genuine workers' movement) and, in particular, after decades of
the Western creation of 'safe' labour organisations in the Third World,
sections of the left can be so uncritical about new labour groups in the
Stalinist or ex-Stalinist bloc.

It is a pretty crude case of economism and lack of understanding that
organisations like the European Trade Union Confederation are probably more
likely to be instruments of Western policy in other parts of the world than
of independent workers struggle and genuine internationalism.

I'm someone who actually shed no tears over the collapse of the Soviet
bloc.  Yet I must say that the widespread preference of the Trotskyist left
for Third Way 'social democracy' (ie, it isn't even really social democracy
these days) over Stalinism, a preference rooted in Stalinophobia and a soft
spot for 'democratic' imperialism, is actually quite stomach-turning.

As ETUC helps market forces along in the ex-Yugoslavia, and the position of
workers there gets worse, these leftists will no doubt throw up their hands
in horror at the outcome, an outcome for which they have been (however
unwittingly or, perhaps, the right word is dumbly) cheerleaders.

Philip Ferguson












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