The coronavirus pandemic is battering the whole world. It has upset a social and economic order that appeared immutable. It has dramatically laid bare the reality of human relations in this society based on the exploitation of one human being by another in the name of profit.
After years of cuts, thousands, if not millions, of workers have to cope with a broken and dysfunctional health system. A health system incapable of curing everyone that chooses not to save the elderly and the ill. They are the sacrificial victims for a system which, at the same time, has no problem making everyone work into their late 60s and beyond.
Millions of people, wage workers, are forced to work every day in extremely harmful environments under worsening conditions. In these factories and workplaces any discussion regarding the dangers of the pandemic comes up against the bosses’ interests and the only thing they consider legitimate: their profits.
The strikes of the working class throughout Italy and the world are posing the fundamental question:
Our Lives Against Their Profits
This system, both in the present situation and in the longer term, pretends that we are all equal as citizens as far as our health needs are concerned. The current reality shows that this is not the case.
All Will not be Well
Even if the pandemic dies down quickly, workers will be facing even harder times. The Covid-19 outbreak has exacerbated the current crisis which has been going on, without a solution, since 2008, at both national and international levels. Capitalism is waiting for this crisis to pass, to return to business as usual. But the costs of the crisis will be paid by the working class. As soon as the pandemic is over a new period of cuts, sacrifices and austerity will open. This is why every state is preparing the patriotic rhetoric of common interest in fighting the pandemic today in order to demand sacrifices in the interests of the nation tomorrow.
Revolution is the Only Cure
Workers’ actions over the past weeks have shown us how to transform feeble rank and file resistance into a fight for our own needs through a refusal to make more sacrifices for their profits. But it is not enough. From now on, we need to link the defence of the health of every worker to the perspective of a different society. We need a new social model which does not put production in conflict with human health. Never before has the contradiction between the collective health and well-being of humanity been in such stark contrast to the logic of profit. The virus that kills from within is capitalism. The only way we can combat this disease is by building the communist alternative to this system of exploitation and death. This means working to create a political instrument of working class struggle: the internationalist and revolutionary party.
We have always been committed to this task but today it is more important than ever, given that the situation is changing rapidly and time is of the essence. An alternative to this system exists. The task of bringing it into being falls to all of us who are tired of being used and exploited. Let’s get ready for our appointment with history!
Internationalist Communist Tendency