Saturday, June 30, 2012

Ireland And The Lumpenproletariat

Today in Ireland the working class is of a fundamentally different character than that of the Irish working class at the turn of the century. This is because what is considered the Irish working class consists of a large element that is ultimately parasitic on the industrial working class. Much of the radical left represents the interests of what Marx and Engels would describe as lumpen in character. It seeks to protect the interests of the permanent and semi permanent unemployed. Much of this stratum has no interest in being employed as registered workers. They are under the naive illusion that capitalism can eternally sustain a massive parasitic social stratum that in a sense shares a commonality with the financial bourgeoisie. Both are parasitic.

The working class at the turn of the century was much more impoverished and deprived than it is today.There was no social welfare protection as there is today. This meant that unemployed workers were generally impoverished and eventually descended into the lumpen working class --even died. Admittedly there was a section of the working class, some craft workers, that was relatively privileged thereby experiencing a more comfortable life style than that of the majority of the working class. Indeed the working class has been and is composed of different strata.

Today what is described as the Irish working class is of a different character. Much of the working class work a three day week or don’t work at all. But they and the so called low paid worker receive a basket of benefits from the capitalist welfare state that bring their living standards up to the level(and even beyond) of the higher strata workers who, prima facie, appear to be better off. But much of this strata may earn less revenue, in effect, than many of these workers from the lower strata. This huge socially protected section of the working class works little and is, in some cases at least, relatively affluent. This allows them to lead a nice social life, have cars and go on holidays etc. This section of the working class tends to have little interest in politics. For them socialism already exists. It has no interest in revolution. This is why there is only marginal interest and support for communist politics. This "working class" tends to be vulgar, anti-intellectual and ostentatious with little depth.

At the moment the surplus value wasted to financially support these strata of the working class is coming from the EU and the world at large including the higher strata of the Irish working class.Right now the Irish state is borrowing billions of Euro to support this strata.Workers from the Irish state sector have had their incomes and conditions of work slashed to support the relatively leisured lifestyle of this semi to fully employed workforce. Some of them have never worked an official day in their life. They get rents subsidised, house purchases subsidised, medical cards, cheap fuel, free baby buggies etc. Many of them can work fifteen hours a week while still receiving their package of state benefits. Some of them don’t even have to get the points generally needed to qualify for university courses because they are considered by the state as vulnerable. Many quangos are financially supported by the state to promote the interests of this so called vulnerable section of our society.

Figures for this state of affairs are not easy to acquire. This is because there is an attempt to hide the extent of the problem from the more highly motivated skilled section of the working class and even middle class.There will never be revolution in Ireland while a mass of people are given "bread and circuses" Much of this section too consists of immigrants too.

Today there is a hidden and open censorship that denies us free speech. If individuals draw attention to this reality they are attacked for being extremely right wing, even racist and fascist. I am a communist and am saying these things.I am convinced that a substantive communist movement will never exist while this parasitism obtains in Ireland. Future generations, our children and grand children, will have to pay for this social parasitism. Because billions are being borrowed to pay for this parasitism the current and future generations will have to suffer by paying for "the vulnerable"in taxation.

I don’t attack social protection being dispensed to the genuine vulnerable. In the Ireland of today the vulnerable are a small minority. The government has actively supported this development as a means of buying votes and keeping the masses well away from insurrection.