CNT proposes reorganization of IWA

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melenas
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Apr 7 2016 21:13

The truth is that is sad to rich this point, if some think that for CNT members was easy to take this decision, is wrong. Is hard to see how a section that has less than 8 years as member of IWA spend so much eford laying about other sections. However, as I said time will saw as what will happen.

Of course tomorrow I will answer akai new lies and manipulations. Interesting how she omit the main part of the info to try to throw rubbish to other IWA sections, great responsibility is demostrating this secretary.

syndicalist
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Apr 7 2016 23:25

Asked comradely and respectfully, can you please expand on this, eithetr in a PM or here. I'm not sure how this relates to the US at all

Appreciate it.

s.nappalos wrote:
. At least parts of the CNT have opened a door for us to think more about where we stand and how we could correct some long standing failures within North America to coordinate internationally on a sustained and strategic basis, to figure out specific concrete things we can do on the most pressing issues connected to our long term objectives, and how we can effectively take advantage of this context that's developed that's more friendly to us than in decades. quote]

syndicalist
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Apr 8 2016 00:35

Robot, I hear what you are saying about the past. Aside from the Australian ASF, the FAU stood by the WSA in 1999/2000. Not the CNT or anyone else in the IWA. I do not care to relive those memories and negative experiances here. But I am appreciative of comradeship of the FAU.

While I have long and fond memories of a number of FAUistas (going back to the 1970s), sometimes friends disagree.

Suffice it to say the IWA has had very serious problems for a long time and I think there is probably enough blame to pass around to all. Afterall, the CNT-AIT has always had a large role and place in the history of the IWA, by virtue of its size and historical place, for better or worse. And for decades comrades have agreed to go along with much of what it proposed. Sometimes to the negative of some of the Section's own internal politics. But those internal IWA agreements were reached in good faith and after internal debate and discussion and understandings.

My main "reaction" to the linked document is it seems to by-pass the internal sanctity of previous debates and discussions that I am more familiar with. It is a declaration of intent,
not of debate.

Having always been a member of a small section, I think maybe I have a different view of what its like to be in a small affiliate.

Perhaps my own feelings are colored by our participation in the "second wave" of post-WW 2 IWA growth. When the CNT was still underground, the USI barely exisiting and the bulk of other sections heavily made up of exiles nearing retiriring age. It was up to our small and scattered organizations of comardes in our late teens, and twenties, to carry out the hard task of rebuilding international anarchosyndicalism. We did not tire organizing pickets in support of CNT prisoners in Carbachel prison, of fighting against the garroting of Puig. we were excited, we were full of fire and inspired by the principles of the IWA, respect for the elders who were still holding the anarchosyndicalist torch alight. Our small groups begain the process of rebuilding and or building new organizations in England, France, Germany, Norway, the US and standing in solidarity with the FORA, the rebuilding USI, the underground Bulgarians and Spanish comrades. Our numbers small, our groups scattered, our membership young and generally inexperianced. But we fought on. Some sections were able to grow larger than others, some split some remained small but stable. nearlly all, large and small engaged in practical work of various sorts. And when an IWA Section needed solidarity,we stood in solidarity. And, yes, international solidarity picket lines mattered.

I can not speak about the smaller Sections that have been enagegd since the end of the 1990s and forward. What I can say that our Section, the WSA took expanding the IWA into the devloping south serious. It was at our iniative that contact was first dveeloped with the Bangladesh garment workers. Our initiative in opeining up and developing relations with the
Nigerian Awareness League.

These were not big section iniaitives,and my point being that small sections, can and will play constructive roles. Just because a local organization might numerically small, does not mean they do not or can not paly a constructive role. And, as with our comrades in larger sections and unions, we also take pride in our work.

Anyway, I was just going to write a small, short note. I guess this was somewhat a walk down memory lane,

Life is a circle, everything comes full circle, even within the life of our movement. So I will end with something the late CNTista construction worker and former IWA Secty. (Gorron) once told this then young and eager militiant: "We do things togther, not alone. We discuss internally, work together as brothers [sic]." Indeed, wise words.

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syndicalistcat
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Apr 8 2016 00:40

no1:

Quote:
Could you expand a bit on what you mean by extreme ideological purity?

I'm not going to answer that question because I don't want to get in a pissing match with anyone. Enough of that already here.

akai
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Apr 8 2016 05:40

Well, this is odd but nice that syndicalist, although we disagree with some things about the lWA issue, very nicely puts in words what the majority of people in most lWA Sections feel.

l can add that l have been around for a long time too and literally l remember FAU just after it started. Well, that happens. Things grow or they don't. A lot of organizations that also once tried to do something disappeared. We once had Sections in Nigeria, Japan...

lnside the organizations that yell about small groups of friends, we have local groups which are quite tiny and do not carry on union activity. Robot, l checked that at last Congress your local group is still just 3 people, but you still participate vocally in the FAU. So l really wonder how that works, if you think you can play no productive role? Of course not.

And another thing, syndicalist talks about the CNT role as being "for better or for worse", but my opinion is that, despite the fact that they have considerable syndical activity, it has lately been the former. All this comes, ironically, at a time when there is more syndical activity in the lWA outside the bigger Sections than ever. Which should be seen as a positive development. But the more that goes on, we somewhere here more and more about how dare newer organizations play roles, etc. So, there is a large feeling among parts of the lWA that the CNT sees the organization as its and does not want to talk or listen to others as much as it wants to be able to decide all.

Frankly, we have had no real support from CNT in our syndical activity and have had to learn ourselves. l think that, whatever issues we may or may not have in our development, this has all been beneficial to us, because we learn to make our own way and can better determine strategies appropriate to all our realities.

Finally, there are many other issues here, but l am deeply disappointed in the fact that people chose to talk about these issues in this way and it shows a lot about what is really going on. The CNTExteriores person, well, she has been more active addressing libcom readership than she has been in talking to the rest of the lWA. l could discuss more about that but will let it go. As l said, and these are not "lies" like Melenas the troll says, we tried to bring important issues to the appropriate instances which are lWA plenaries and Congresses, which is the place to talk about these things and, very concretely, we set up an important discussion about our international policy, (2012) who we should be cooperating with, etc. etc. but as l said, the CNT did not delegate anybody or have decisions, for like a year and a half it did not even have an international secretary delegated, the FAU did not come or send any opinions on the topic, USl was there but didn't say a word. Later, organizations like CNT set about with their own plans.

This is non-functional.

This debate is here, and not sent by "exteriores" to the lWA for several reasons. First, it is meant for people like Juan Conatz and people outside the lWA to get excited at and applaud as another way for CNT to act in a powerful, pressure-exerting manner, not in a dialogue with the rest of the Sections. The vast majority of people in the lWA don't come here to discuss.

This type of forum is also very convenient for trolls like Melenas or Yepa who for years enjoy the comfort of such activity without writing their names. By contrast, in the lWA procedure, it is the Sections which send their opinions, not anonymous people. And the discussion is the discussion of the Sections - who are the ones who are bound by confederative agreements.

The lWA have had some basic confederative agreements for a long time and the issue of them is for lWA to discuss. The fact that this discussion is here is because, frankly, there are more people here from outside the lWA and even outside anarchosyndicalism than there are in the lWA and the CNT needs the people who don't like the lWA's modus operandi for moral support so they can go back and say "look! people support us!".

When they brought ideas to the lWA on the other hand, they got rejection and they cannot stand it because, being big, they are convinced they are right and everybody is wrong.

We can speak a lot as to unions now (but l have to go to work). smile lt is clear that there is an issue with syndical work in the lWA and it goes better for some than for others. But as l have said elsewhere, this is not connected to voting because even if the lWA was a CNT dictatorship where they decided everything alone and the rest were just vassals, that would not do anything to improve the syndical activity in the places it needs. The reason is also because in all the years l have been, we haven't had the initiatives of syndical sections to act in a supportive mentoring way to promote syndical education.

melenas
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Apr 8 2016 08:02

Akai you wrote direct lies (is not the first time i told you other times, ones you erase a comment with one of your lies in this forum) about an IWA section in the forum, i tell to you and you call me Troll. Good way of working, ones again when someone doesn't say amen to you, you insult to him.

Quote:
No trolling, no sock-puppeting
From Wikipedia: "a troll is someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community with the primary intent of provoking other users into a desired emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion." Trolling is not allowed, and may lead to posts being deleted, users warned and persistent offenders banned.

I think you do not understand that you are the secretary of IWA that you represent to ALL the sections and that you cant be laying about a section. I never saw so irresponsible attitude.

ajjohnstone
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Apr 8 2016 08:30

Often people experience a bit of schadenfreude when we witness those in rival organisations tear themselves apart in an internecine dispute. I can't say i am experiencing that right now.

I find it tragic that when the working class are being subjected to new and intensive repression we turn in upon ourselves, blaming each other for what is a class impotence. I see it in my own party...the obsession with dotting the i and crossing the t , discussing ourselves more than we engage with fellow workers (an exaggeration - we have much more mundane reasons for our current relative inactivity)

I really have no idea what the root disagreements are about but in the interest of our class, i hope it is speedily resolved in a constructive and not a destructive manner and the IWA emerges the stronger. A split is only to be chosen if there are no other options, and i doubt very much that is the case.

Having had my say, i bow out of this thread.

asn
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Apr 8 2016 11:07

In regard to the "sect" problem in the current IWA and the CNT's remedy in this discussion
see a critical review of Fighting for Ourselves: Anarcho-Syndicalism and the Class Struggle, on
Rebel Worker Vol.33 No.220 July-Aug 2014 on web site www.rebelworker.org
or do google search A-infos Rebel Worker Review of Fighting for Ourselves: Anarcho-Syndicalism and the Class Struggle and on the internet A-infos Rebel Worker Vol.35 No.1 Mar-April 2016
Review of "Living Anarchism: Jose Peirats and the Spanish Anarcho-Syndicalist Movement" by Chris Ealham. Published by AK Press. These reviews throw some light on this complex sect problem which is such a part of the so called anarchist/syndicalist milieus in particularly the Anglo world and elsewhere.

hammclovnaggnell
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Apr 8 2016 12:54

Just to say we're discussing this in Bristol solfed. I don't know what more to say.

Yepa
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Apr 8 2016 13:48

The big issue of all this is that if the "big" groups of IWA leave, IWA will become very similar to all those radical left troskist XIIX internationals with 4 freaks per country, irrelevant, and that looks like a deal already done.
CNT has taken a decision, we all know that after FAU, USI would be next, and then CNT. CNT just didn´t want to wait for a long and painfull process.
For some of us it was a traumatic decission to take, but we saw no other option. I think all was more about feeling disrespected by this Secretariat, than any other thing.... no body want to stay in a place were you are being mistreated.

Once that was said... just getting back to normal live.... time CNT Local unions are going to spend in this will be very little. Decission has been taken, and honestly most of people doesn´t care much about IWA, for most members this is not a big deal, we all focus local, usually local unions doesn´t want to know much even about their own country federations, and most members see all this as stupid burocracy written by people with too much time to waste. Live will go on, new partnerships will appear and everybody should focus local. If you follow all this internal debates too much you finish totally feed up.

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OliverTwister
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Apr 8 2016 14:02

It doesn't seem like this is controversial at all on ALasBarricadas.

zaczek
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Apr 8 2016 14:21

Well, if what Yepa so respectfully calls "sects" and "trots" are the ones who actually provided us with solidarity, we are perfectly fine sticking with them. Meanwhile, the self-aggrandizing folks never had time for trifles like actually helping someone out. So no tears will be shed.

melenas
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Apr 8 2016 17:10
Quote:
Dues problems with the CNTE go back since 2010. lt is not related to the FAU situation, it is related to the ideas of CNTE. Recently they are not in good standing – in other words, they haven't paid their dues for a couple of years. It is not the first time, but in the past, unions of the CNTE managed to get the Treasurer to pass their money on.

Thats is half of the story, as secretary of IWA you have access to the payments of the sections and you can see that CNT was nearly the only one paying every month, the rest were paying ones every 2 years or when there was a IWA congress or plenary. CNT only made the same as the rest, but ones again you forget the part that you are not interested to explain.

Also you dont explain why CNT ask to reduce the quantity to pay. maybe the people should know that because there was an accident in a building of CNT en Elda (near Valencia) a historical member of CNT was nearly to die because the irresponsibility of the members of Elda union that continue using a building with structural problems that had to be sealed. the Man try to take the elevator but there wasn't and felt down inside. This accident that appear in all the region capitalist media destroying the image of CNT. of course this is in the court because the historical member of CNT didnt recover totally and now is very probable that CNT have to pay more than half million €
because this issue CNT had to cut a lot of expenses, because CNT-Elda even they were the responsible of this issue they where legally clean and also they never admitted any responsibility.

News Accident Historical CNT member in Elda

More recent news bout other issue in Elda

CNT ask for this reduce, but some sections and the IWA secretary started to put impediments, and at the end CNT decided to leave this issue to be decided by CNT congress.

the situation of USI is similar, USI has big economical problems because repression in the courts. Ask to pay less during a period and again the same issues as CNT.

When ever any body has a issue about payments, everybody understand them, but look like CNT and USI cant have economical issues.

Quote:
In some organizations, including the CNTE, the Treasurer or Secretary is allowed, after the elapse of a certain time, to remove an organization from the list of entitlement to vote.

Maybe in other organizations is a decision of the secretary, in CNT is mandatory, the secretaries have to do what is approve by congress.

Quote:
For a reality check – a Section (CNT) which hasn't paid dues, before that lowered their dues, is coming to a Congress where their affiliation – a very serious matter – should be discussed. At the same time, they are coming to the same Congress which should discuss their situation with a proposal. That proposal is addressed to the other Sections, which are in good standing and generally adhere to the rules and it is like this: you should not be in the new lWA if you do not agree with us. It doesn't matter if you are a union or not – it matters if you agree with our vision. If you don't agree, too bad, we are making a refoundation with those what agree. (Doesn't matter if any of them are in bad standing either.)

this had so easy solution... understand CNT problem and that´s all.

Quote:
Now, my assumption is that this is one of these behind the scenes agreements, you know, but the CNT trolls keep telling us that this doesn't happen and that the executives are actually delegates doing what thousands of cleaners have told them to do. So, maybe CNT decided that, maybe not. I will make no judgment.

This is one of the big problems of IWA, every body thinks that have the right to put the nose in CNT agreements and say what is and what is not. Why you don´t explain to the people when you decided in your own witch CNT decisions you will attend and witch no? yes, we had to read that you do not attend a CNT decision because was taken in a way you don´t like. Since when an IWA secretary has the right to discriminate decisions according to their own opinion?

But has a easy solution, call trolls to the ones that remind you the way you act and that´s all.

Quote:
Before some troll starts yelling about the lies, l am saying what is in the report and, given the accompanying docs and other things from FAU, l don't doubt this account, which was very thorough. But all affiliates can judge themselves.

Also all im saying is register, I remind you because maybe you want to call me again troll.

Quote:
FAU proudly tells us that they have never had relations with that other Spanish union … because CNT is its sister section.

OK, so some in the lWA are sister sections and are respected, some not. There is one attitude towards some, one towards others. It one case relations are vital for the class... but if we are talking of many times more workers, it is a matter of solidarity and friendship.

Sadly you cant say the same, you had had contact and meetings with organizations in Spain that are not CNT, and you were asked about it in the last congress, but like always, no answer. Yes the same congress where there was a group of people usurping CNT and IWA name and you did nothing.

Quote:
This great imagination is mostly a lot of hot air though. And we see the consequences. One of the CNT trolls just was talking about how he thought the lWA was like billions of workers and he is just so angry it is not and he is disappointed. I am afraid this comes from this big cock syndrome that is so persuasive which people doing a lot of bragging about their size and little reality. But... lWA doesn't do this, this is only a problem of lack of reliable information on the local levels.

Yes maybe is very funny for you when you realize that some sections lie about the number of members they have. Nice for you that you like the people to lie you.

Quote:
As l said, and these are not "lies" like Melenas the troll says, we tried to bring important issues to the appropriate instances which are lWA plenaries and Congresses, which is the place to talk about these things and, very concretely, we set up an important discussion about our international policy, (2012) who we should be cooperating with, etc. etc. but as l said, the CNT did not delegate anybody or have decisions, for like a year and a half it did not even have an international secretary delegated, the FAU did not come or send any opinions on the topic, USl was there but didn't say a word. Later, organizations like CNT set about with their own plans.

I told you clearly witch are your lies, and your answer is to call me troll, you are funny. For example you try to use the fact that some unions didn't came to CNT congress to attack CNT and lie about the support that have the decisions. but when CNT because a matter of time can´t take a decision for a IWA meeting and at least send someone to be there, you use it again to attack CNT. you don´t have solution, what ever happens always give you the chance to throw rubbish. i Never see you saying anything about IWA decisions depending in how many sections take part in the meeting.

Quote:
This debate is here, and not sent by "exteriores" to the lWA for several reasons. First, it is meant for people like Juan Conatz and people outside the lWA to get excited at and applaud as another way for CNT to act in a powerful, pressure-exerting manner, not in a dialogue with the rest of the Sections. The vast majority of people in the lWA don't come here to discuss.

You lie again, as i told you several times all CNT decisions of congress are public. this was send to the sections already. Let me repeat it again for you, maybe this time you are able to understand it, IS MANDATORY TO PUBLISH CNT CONGRESS AGREEMENTS. you can find all congress agreements in CNT website, after every congress.

Quote:
This type of forum is also very convenient for trolls like Melenas or Yepa who for years enjoy the comfort of such activity without writing their names. By contrast, in the lWA procedure, it is the Sections which send their opinions, not anonymous people. And the discussion is the discussion of the Sections - who are the ones who are bound by confederative agreements.

The lWA have had some basic confederative agreements for a long time and the issue of them is for lWA to discuss. The fact that this discussion is here is because, frankly, there are more people here from outside the lWA and even outside anarchosyndicalism than there are in the lWA and the CNT needs the people who don't like the lWA's modus operandi for moral support so they can go back and say "look! people support us!".

This forum is perfect for you, you can say what ever you want about a section of IWA being the Secretary of IWA and nothing happens, you are not able to understand that the main part of the discussion is people of CNT giving answer to your lies and the accusations of reformist of one member of your union. we told you several times to stop to publish bullshits about CNT and you continue, now don´t come making your self the victim, because you are the responsible of this sow.

Quote:
When they brought ideas to the lWA on the other hand, they got rejection and they cannot stand it because, being big, they are convinced they are right and everybody is wrong.

Is not a mater of size, is something several times explained, but doesn't mater, you are in possession of absolute truth, maybe if you were able to understand that maybe you are not always right, now we could be in other situation. is very easy for you to say CNT, FORA, USI, FAU are very bad and end of discussion. you do not stop not even a second to think that if more than 90% of IWA militants are really uncomfortable is because there is something that maybe is not going good, and you as secretary could have some responsibility.

melenas
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Apr 8 2016 14:35

I want to remember to Akai and all the rest that CNT is a IWA section with all the rights, and the congress didn't take a decision to leave IWA.

melenas
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Apr 8 2016 14:54
zaczek wrote:
Well, if what Yepa so respectfully calls "sects" and "trots" are the ones who actually provided us with solidarity, we are perfectly fine sticking with them. Meanwhile, the self-aggrandizing folks never had time for trifles like actually helping someone out. So no tears will be shed.

Really, good luck, one of the unions that you are speaking about is the one of Elda, that create the issue of CNT payments. other one had Akay a discussion with them some years a go and was very funny because they were not able to understand what Akai was saying and didn't finish very good the discussion. all for you.

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militant-proletarian
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Apr 8 2016 16:24
akai wrote:
Now, my assumption is that this is one of these behind the scenes agreements, you know, but the CNT trolls keep telling us that this doesn't happen and that the executives are actually delegates doing what thousands of cleaners have told them to do. So, maybe CNT decided that, maybe not. I will make no judgment.

This is a clear comment that shows how admin: no flaming you're. As a IWA Sec. you should know you're supposed to be impartial, but you clearly take a position against the CNT majority and for few local unions which were expelled because they didn't respect the CNT statutes or have tried to boycott the organization work, among other things more serious. As a commissar you're doing a great job, congratulations. With this CNT proposal I thought you could change a little bit your sectarian views, but years and years acting for example like a Stasi agent in Germany, spying what the FAU (especially Berlin) does or not, determined to find whatever to expel the FAU, that is something you're used and you live for. As the comrade Yepa, I'll smile from ear to ear when you try to re-build the IWA with your taliban friends. You'll check that only a tiny bunch of no flaming will follow you.

zaczek
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Apr 8 2016 17:31

Fine. Be insulting as much as you want. We'll see where it gets you.

Cheers

daniel dreveny
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Apr 8 2016 18:38

Hello,

I will try to read some parts of the CNT-E statement (the subject of this topic) and try to understand it.

In the second sentence, there is mentioned:

We believe that it is necessary to explain our position on the drift of our international, so that this internal situation can be made publically known in order to openly and quickly begin the process of its re-foundation.

I am surprised that CNT wants to re-found existing, running and functional organization, which regularly meet, which regularly brings decisions and which has functional mandated Secretariat, working groups and communication canals.
This is for me really strange.
Since I am around IWA I have seen that the only way how to change things in IWA is to raise a point to IWA agenda. I am sure, that this process is important to follow because this process is transparent.

However, CNT in their statement says:

To bring about concrete solutions to these questions, the CNT proposes to begin a process for the re-founding of an anarcho-syndicalist and revolutionary unionist international. To this end we are preparing a series of conferences and contacts with those sections of the IWA interested in a process of re-founding the International, and with other organizations that, while not currently members of the IWA, are interested in participating in the construction of a model for revolutionary unionism at the global level. These conferences and contacts will have as their aim the organization of a congress to re-found a radical unionist international.
As a first step for these conferences, the CNT makes the following proposals as an organizational basis for the new IWA:

From this I clearly see, that CNT-E is trying to create new process (series of conferences and contacts which will lead to "congress") - out of the current process (agenda with clear points to be discussed which leads to Plenary or IWA Congress).

As a reason why CNT-E tries to do re-foundation via this new process is that the current one CNT-E understands as follows:

At this congress it became clear that due to the peculiar structure of the decision-making within the IWA, a small group of sections, despite their scant presence in their own territories and total lack of orientation towards union activity, could impose their criteria upon the rest of the international. Since this congress, all attempts to address the situation have failed, due to the unwillingness of the current secretary to engage in dialogue (a basic duty of the office) and the complicity of a number of sections that only exist on the internet.

I think I understand frustration of people from CNT-E, once per some time at the congress, these small sections together reject some of the CNT-E proposals prepared for Congress, especially those related to proportional voting.

I am also sometimes not satisfied when IWA reachs other decision than my organization wish or rejects our point on which we worked hard. But this is life in the international where historically 1 Section has 1 vote.

I am sure CNT-E knows very well, that if small sections will vote for proportional voting, they could just pack and go home, as all the decisions will be decided by CNT-E afterwards.
I am not in the position to say, that CNT-E (if proportional voting will become reality) will not be fair and wise to decide for the growth of IWA and anarchosyndicalism for sure, but I can see this as a big risk.

How could be better that one organization from one country might decide about for example 8 other organizaton from 8 different countries (with different culture, laws, economical and political situation, history of class struggle)? Where is the prouf that for example 3000 members of CNT-E (or 1 milion it does not really matter) will perfectly know what is important for for example 300 members from other sections?
What could prevent in this kind of situation that CNT-E will not kick-out whatever Section they do not like? Etc.

There is no answer to these questions.

To summary my conlusions about the CNT-E statement:

1. re-foundation is not possible as the IWA is normally functional
2. how the re-foundation should be done is unknown for current IWA processes
3. one of the main aim of CNT-E is proportional voting to be approved in re-founded IWA - this is against the current IWA statuses where 1 Section has 1 vote

Thanks.

Daniel

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militant-proletarian
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Apr 8 2016 21:09
daniel dreveny wrote:
I think I understand frustration of people from CNT-E, once per some time at the congress, these small sections together reject some of the CNT-E proposals prepared for Congress, especially those related to proportional voting.

It's not a spoiled brat throwing a tantrum. For last years the CNT, USI and FAU have been trying to bring forth a serious union methodology beyond borders in order to have a real international capable of implementing an union activity and defending ourselves. The response from the minority is always the same: FAU and CNT seem to be reformist, then we are against them whatever they propose. The reason against is totally distorted: "democracy". Well it's funny because when voting system is on the table, number of affilitiation is not important, but for member dues number is important. So where is the bloody equality when some tiny sections controlled everything. If you aren't willing to build a strong international with us, so piss off! End of story.

Quote:
I am also sometimes not satisfied when IWA reachs other decision than my organization wish or rejects our point on which we worked hard. But this is life in the international where historically 1 Section has 1 vote.

This is system was logic when the IWA had sections with thousands of members in their respective countries, where they had more or less influence. Today what we have... Nothing. Even the CNT is insignificant, but its strategy in Spain is giving positive results. The CNT is able to stop dismissals and mass dismissals, or able to force employers to reinstate fired workers. Do you think this is magic? No, since Cordoba congress everything has changed, because there are people who developed an union strategy and methodology that works. How do you pretend to bring about a big conflict with lawyers and other means against, for example, a labour force adjustment plan or other complex legal stuff if this is certainly reformism for the IWA minority? With flags and flyers, then a picture with faces covered? IWA Secretariat position is clear, they support a bunch of functional illiterates who were controlling the CNT for 20 years as if it was a social club, but fortunately who were kicked out.

If you live in happy fantasy with a "functional" IWA like that, so go on. We will continue anyway with you or without you.

zaczek
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Apr 8 2016 22:00

So tell me Proletarian, how has this strategy been working out for you? Relying on court cases almost exclusively, signing up people without caring if they ever show up at a meeting again, pushing the numbers up that way. Any major wins using this bright new and shiny methodology? Clearly not. This is a way of building a mainstream union, so why not join the bigger verdi, since principles don't matter anymore and that would be "less sectarian" and give you bigger SIZE.

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robot
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Apr 8 2016 22:27

I will not start to comment the CNT proposal concerning the IWA because I do not feel this to be my business. Nor will I put my hands into this sometimes bizarr flame-war. Yet I would like to add some aspects concerning the background that eventually led to the CNT proposal.

In my understanding what is happening in and to the IWA now is the result of an error the IWA comitted about 25 years ago when the IWA decided to chose the minority faction of a split in the French IWA section and hence to kick-off the vast majority of its French members. At the time this was a close run with many of the sections cowardly abstaining.

That decision on the French split from my point of view was a turning point after more than two decades of positive development for the IWA in the 70th and 80th.

- It disposed the IWA of one of its most agile and fastes growing sections.

- It eventually disposed the IWA that until then from its beginning had been an international of anarcho-syndicalist AND revolutionary syndicalist organizations of its revolutionary syndicalist origins.

- It was the beginning of constant attacks against the autonomy of the sections by several attempts to cut their strategical and tactical liberty and to impose limitations on them that where considered „truely anarcho-syndicalist“ by a majority of sections.

- It came along with severe faction fightings within the Spanish CNT. As a result the then IWA secretary was forced by his own section to resign because he was too much in favour of the revolutiontary syndicalist CNT-F faction. He was then replaced by obedient followers of the dominant Granada / SOV Madrid faction within the CNT. Even worse, later that faction imposed G.R. as secretary general of the IWA. While many in Spain where quite happy that he found a new playground, for the IWA he turned into a catalyzer for aggravating every potential and actual conflict there was within the international. For many of the younger IWA members who had learned much from the CNT exile, it was very sad and repellent to see, that the dominant CNT faction tried to kick-off the exile just because their children and grandchildren played an active part in the rise of the French CNT and therefore fall out off the Alhambras favour.

- It damaged the perception of the IWA as an international of anarcho-syndicalist unions. Beside the Spanish CNT (though on its knees with little more than 2.000 members at the time) and USI, the CNT-F was the only section that was able to get into job-floor struggles. The rest of us were either trying to get a stand at the job-floor or were quite happy with remaining an anarcho-syndicalist propaganda group and enjoying the possibility to discuss theory and history with others around the world. With the fatal decision we lost a revolutionary syndicalist union and kept a hopelessly divided French network of anarcho-primitists on the one hand and people-assemblyists on the other that split again some years later. While the history of the French IWA sections has been repeating as a farce, the damage was done and it had major impacts on the development - or better setback - of the IWA.

- It poisened the climate within the IWA ever since. As I wrote earlier, the decision concerning France was a close one with many sections abstaining. The FAU that voted against the expulsion of the vast majority of our French comrades, did never accept that decision and thus got into the crosslines of the Alhambra and their allies within the sections and friends of the IWA groups (some of them nothing more than a couple in the civils registry sence, like in Switzerland). Others that as well felt uncomfortable with the decision kept silent though it did not prevent them from getting victims of the next which hunt.

As for the (still) IWA section I am member of (the FAU), we had constant discussions over the past 20 years whether it is of any use for us to stay in the IWA or not. We had several congress decisions on whether we should wait if something changes for the better, whether we should leave it or whether we should wait until we get kicked-out. The votes where different now and then, but we never decided either to leave and neither to come crawling and beg for mercy at the gates of the Alhambra.

Over the years the situation within the IWA improved somewhat. The Spanish CNT recovered based on the job-floor. The balance of power within the CNT changed. People were happy about solidarity when they got into conflicts with multinationals. For us it was a great experience when we picketed PLUS discount shops in some 50 towns all over Germany after a comrade in Sevilla had been kicked off at a local PLUS store there. Same goes for PFERD-Rueggeberg with their lay-offs at Barcelona and our pickets at the German corporate HQ and at trade-fairs where they showed off. That gave us and the Spanish comrades a taste of what international solidarity could be like once we would stop beating us upon the IWA statutes or the NSF spotting the latest secret SAC plans for a parallel international with their camouflage submarine in Stockholm harbor or their wiretap device at what SAC office so ever. Same goes for the USI who had kept rather calm for long until they got under insane fire by one of the micro-sections that shortly after declared that they do no longer consider themselves to be anarcho-syndicalist and dispersed themselves into the big void.

As some of you may know, we (the FAU), are still a quite small anarcho-syndicalist organization and have made little more than our first attempts to walk on the job-floor within the past few years. Nevertheless we sextupled our membership since the early 1990s and I guess we are now number three in membership of IWA sections after the Spanish CNT, the USI and ahead of SolFed. With the increase in membership, the struggles, the consultations for our fellow-workers, the sometimes fierce response of the bosses lawyers, the integration of many comrades that joined us from Spain, Greece, France and other countries following the 2008 economic crisis, our focus has shifted somewhat. Our discussions are less on principles and history but more on practical issues, on how to integrate new members, on how to educate ourselves, on how to defend our members etc.

That said our attitude towards the IWA changed quite a bit within the past few years. For many long-standing members like me, the IWA was a point of reference for many years. Something to - for historical reasons among others - fight for - even against all odds. For many of my younger comrades the situation is quite different. They are mostly looking for practical solidarity in the class-war, for an exchange of experiences, for common action across borders. They do not understand why they should not cooperate on different levels with other syndicalists (with or without the anarcho-prefix) just because the IWA consideres those organizations to be its enemies or because something went wrong with the "sexo de los angeles". Neither do they understand the organizational concept of the IWA (with its one country - one section, one section - one vote, communication through the sections secretariates etc.) because for them it is something that might have been suitable for the 19th century but they doubt whether international cooperation amongst revolutionary and anarcho-syndicalists in the 21 century needs lods of formalities like this at all. And maybe they are pretty right with their attitude!

For most of us in the FAU the IWA has no longer been a very important issue for the last years. The IWA secretariat did us the favor to cut us off all internal communication the day they decided to put us into suspension until the extraordinary IWA congress (was it in december 2016?) should kick us out. Many of us considered this as a means of environmental protection because it saved the life of quite some trees that must not die for the paper to circulate IWA documentation within the FAU membership. And as we were alowed to stop paying dues to the IWA after we have been suspended (I guess we had been among the few sections who were in good standing for many years) we have funds for other international projects. You could call that a win-win-situation.

With the proposal of the Spanish CNT it is manifest that the IWA is in a very difficult situation. The ones who check the IWA sections websites may have noticed that this weekend the USI is meeting for an extraordinary congress at Parma with the IWA question being the only topic on the agenda. Without being able to predict the result of that congress, my impression is that the IWA might lose 90 to 95% of its membership by the end of this year because the three major sections (in terms of membership) are either about to refocus or to be kicked-out. I am not at all happy about this because I appreciate the efforts and advances some of the IWA sections made within the past few years - I am thinking of SolFed and ZSP in particular (Laure no need to comment something concerning FAU and IP - this is my personal opinion). But I can perfectly understand why CNT, USI and most of my comrades in the FAU are "hasta los cojones" and have lost any hope that something within the IWA might change for the better with all those wisenheimers at Moscow, Belgrade, Oslo and a some other places.

sin mas

robot

MT
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Apr 8 2016 22:42
Quote:
For last years the CNT, USI and FAU have been trying to bring forth a serious union methodology beyond borders in order to have a real international capable of implementing an union activity and defending ourselves.

I think people would be very interested in this serious methodology that - as it seems the your post above - was rejected by the evil sects. I remember there were some interesting ideas, but I would say that those that were approved by the IWA were rather drfats, ideas. To implement them, it would need input from sections. And correct me if I am wrong, but it is natural top expect that those who porpose things would take the active part in helping to make these ideas implemented in practice. What did the CNT and the camp do? Well, readers, let them be honest and tell it publically. Let's which what type of narrative they will use then.

People think that this is about some evil secretariat or some lazy fucks with no idea what to do, just being happy to be with the IWA and opposing everything that is serious, meaningful etc. etc. I guess only because they are bad and rotten. This is what the CNT and the camp try to sell. I am sorry for those who buy this... The truth is, that it is just a simple narrative to make a complex issue to be acceptable by as many people as possible. I was shocked to see how this methodology works with people and how it really brainwashes them (not only in Spain). It uses the fact that people are tired of conflicts and don't need to spend time with someone else's bullshit and brings it to another level - having power over them to smoothly proceed with the re-launch. First in Spain, then elsewhere. Many people think it is a step forward. Well, that depends on your political mindset (not the label you give to yourself). I don't see anything anarchosyndicalist about it.

The current IWA is a no ideal, no organization or federation is. But despite all the bullshit and ignorance that comes from the part of some sections that now suddenly want to "re-launch the IWA", there is a hard work on side of many sections to fight with the realites that are structurally not so welcome for anarchosyndicalist activities in their regions as are for example for the CNT. There is no equal starting point, this is ridiculous. But only blind can't see that there are sections that really want to help each other and non-IWA organizations to find the best starting points respecting the differences in the countries. And only blind can't see that the "re-launch" forces are those that have been systematically refusing to participate in such activities. And what about those who are not blind and are part of this power game? Time will tell. Let's see who teams up with them and on what grounds.

Sleeper
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Apr 9 2016 01:34

Well this is why the cnt, fai and and just about anyone else supposedly supporting the working class on behalf of anyone else should be fucked off.

It's time to make a new start...

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Chilli Sauce
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Apr 9 2016 04:02

Sleeper, to avoid getting myself a flame warning from the admins, let's just say I wholeheartedly suggest you take a bit of your own advice from that last post.

Mark.
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Apr 9 2016 11:18

USI is holding an 'extraordinary congress' today and tomorrow to discuss the IWA.

http://www.usi-ait.org/index.php/appuntamenti/40-parma/1122-parma-congre...

Quote:

Parma: Congresso straordinario USI-AIT

Il congresso straordinario si svolgerà a Parma il 9 e 10 aprile, presso la sede di via Testi 2.

Sabato dalle ore 13 accrediti (a tal proposito tutte le sezioni devono essere in regola coi pagamenti per l'anno 2015, potranno farlo in occasione del congresso) e alle ore 14.00 inizio.

Si dà mandato alla C.i. di invitare CNT e FAU.

L'odg del congresso è il seguente:

a) situazione internazionale AIT:
b) analisi e valutazione attuale AIT;
c) decisione se e come continuare l'esperienza dell'attuale AIT;
d) quale prospettiva anarcosindacalista perseguire sul piano internazionale e con chi.

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militant-proletarian
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Apr 9 2016 12:58
zaczek wrote:
So tell me Proletarian, how has this strategy been working out for you? Relying on court cases almost exclusively, signing up people without caring if they ever show up at a meeting again, pushing the numbers up that way. Any major wins using this bright new and shiny methodology? Clearly not. This is a way of building a mainstream union, so why not join the bigger verdi, since principles don't matter anymore and that would be "less sectarian" and give you bigger SIZE.

I don't know what your're talking about. Who is relying on court cases or signing up people just because? You know what, you're so ridiculous and ignorance that think this strategy is new. The CNT is just carrying out a strategy decided in the 70's, but due to the split and then the illiterated talibans it was never developed. Don't worry because only with flags and flyers you're making the revolution, the rest is just reformism or bourgeois legal stuff.

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boozemonarchy
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Apr 9 2016 14:52
Sleeper wrote:
Well this is why the cnt, fai and and just about anyone else supposedly supporting the working class on behalf of anyone else should be fucked off.

It's time to make a new start...

Internal tension and strife has basically always been a feature of not just the CNT, but essentially every revolutionary organization that I've ever heard of. I've not heard of one yet that has messiah-nistically risen above this, because people and organizations are not perfect. Your post comes off as naive and annoying as fuck - you gonna make some org with perfect harmony and unwavering working-class orientation? Go for it, it'll just be you, a bottle of Mountain Dew and some cheeto-dust on your fingers fucking off on facebook. Anyways, sometimes the strife represents real concern over direction, and the situation needs to unfold (honestly not a commentary on the current IWA situation, don't know enough about meself). All this said, I of course find this situation regrettable, but alas, this isn't new and it certainly does not make a case against revolutionary union organization.

Should also be noted that while sideline heckling internet assholes are attracted to IWA drama like a fly to shit - IWA sections (including the CNT) are primarily involved / busy in their particular organizing initiatives and it is this work that I think should take precedent in sideliners judgement of how 'worthwhile' it all is.

edit - I wanted to clarify that I'm a big supporter of new initiatives and organizations (I think this is symptomatic of the health of a broader tendency) in a general sense - my issue is with Sleepers implied suggestion that internal strife negates the actual work of an organization or that there could be some org in perfect harmony etc. etc.

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Apr 9 2016 15:32
Quote:
my issue is with Sleepers implied suggestion that internal strife negates the actual work of an organization or that there could be some org in perfect harmony etc. etc.

To be honest Booze, I think you're giving Sleeper's post more credit than it deserves...

Sleeper
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Apr 9 2016 18:15

To be fair it was an angry comment directed at organisations that suppose to represent the working class in some way. Be that union organisation in the workplace or community organisation. Or the likes of the CNT that like to claim both for themselves.

Show me, direct me to where the working class, the proletariat, us, have been given credit for anything positive in say the last 20 years?

Chilli Sauce wrote:
Quote:
my issue is with Sleepers implied suggestion that internal strife negates the actual work of an organization or that there could be some org in perfect harmony etc. etc.

To be honest Booze, I think you're giving Sleeper's post more credit than it deserves...

jc
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Apr 9 2016 18:42

I've got a few thoughts on this

1) I like a lot of the sentiments in the CNT's proposal - fairer representation of big sections (a few hundred dictating to a few thousand people is not democracy), and more autonomy for sections (that's what we're meant to be all about, right?). I think it could go further and be clearer on the autonomy front - but maybe that's a project for the future.

2) The proposal says nothing about dispute resolution - between sections or between sections and officers. In a lot of ways, this is surely the KEY thing we need to improve about international organisation. I don't agree with suspending the FAU but in fairness, that was the only action open to the secretariat to take and they were the only people in the IWA empowered to do anything it (whether anything was wrong in the first place - I'll leave that for later). There needs to be a process for sections to sort out issues between themselves before it gets to the whole international - this would ensure all members of those sections know what is going on first, which I doubt was the case at the time FAU was suspended. I think that with some kind of mediation between the FAU and the ZSP this could have all been resolved years ago. The other thing missing during disputes is the facts - we got the allegations and the FAUs response piecemeal as a result of letters from the different sections that were circulated around the international. That's crazy! Most rank-and-file members still have an incomplete understanding of what happened and yet are asked to vote on the response. A process which starts with an attempt at mediation before it goes before the international would mean we'd start off knowing a lot more and with the issues already laid out in a structured way. A better process would also explain what facts should be presented, how long sections have to respond to allegations, and what format it should take.

3) What has happened here in my opinion is that something initially wrong (some FAU members organising with a union the ZSP had fallen out with - which was not very solidarity-like, whatever the technicalities of it are), got escalated beyond proportion by crap processes and overreaction. I don't think it was good to suspend the FAU for this, the way the facts and allegations were presented was unhelpful to members, and having the suspension ratified by a minority of the IWA membership was totally undemocratic. And then on top of that - the CNT organises a split and releases a communique that exaggerates and makes accusations. "Sections that only exist on the internet" I mean, come on! The ZSP does great work on the ground, and the statement implies they do worse than nothing.

4) For the record, I don't agree with one section, one country, one vote - I think that is too restrictive and mirrors the divisions created by capitalism (is it a coincidence that the two sides in this fall-out are roughly Western vs Eastern Europe???). If we can't work with people we disagree with then we might as well give up! And the fact that sections of an international right now are totally failing to disagree in a constructive way makes me wonder if the whole project is a waste of time. In SF things got a bit nasty a few years back but we made some changes and since then the organisation feels like it is steadily getting better structured, more effective, and more mature. I hope that the same can happen in the IWA following this dispute....