The Plan C leaflet from the J20 demonstration – in London on June 20th, 2015 – for the record.
Austerity is working just fine.
We can’t keep hoping that the powerful will wake up to reason and stop the Plan A of Austerity. Why would they? It’s working for them.
The rich don’t suffer from austerity. They profit from it. Their lives are shielded away from the high-frequency trading hyperreality of capitalism. This vortex of violence is for their benefit. Capital rolls on, trailing food banks, evictions and zero-hour contracts in its wake. Capital isn’t restrained by borders, but guard dog states enforce them on the majority of the worlds populations, looking on as thousands of people drown in the Mediterranean. Capital absorbs everything and everyone, and spits us out when we are no longer useful.
There is no solace to be found in Plan B – a call for the return to the social democracy of old. Whilst capital is still in power, it will quickly extinguish anything which threatens its capacity to profit. Calls to turn back to the old days mutate into demands to reinstate racist violence and xenophobia, while everything we produce continues to be stolen from us: our wealth, our health, our creativity, our compassion.
We won’t be saved by the Green surge, a left-turning Labour, or proposals to tinker with the terms of our corporate kleptocracy.
Together, we must stand. Everything for Everyone.
Counter-power is growing, the only way to secure our own lives and futures becomes a threat to the stability of capital. It is the movement we need and the reality that we all have a stake in constructing.
Everything for Everyone. That is our Plan C.
“when we say ‘short introduction’ – we are hoping to reach people who are interested in the ideas, struggles and the politics of what it means to make and remake people under capitalism (aka: reproduction), but who are probably people who have not say read anything written by Karl Marx. Hence why the language of the video is as jargon free as possible – while still trying to get across some pretty dense concepts. The video is based off a presentation at the plan c congress last Dec that was trying to talk about the politics of social reproduction in a user-friendly, clear and political way. For some die-hard Marxist scholars this will prove challenging. Luckily we have a feature length film coming out in the fall that will address their concerns – jokes!”
— you can read the whole text here:
I don’t think the state of things is readily reducible to bite-sized explanation-metaphors, nor that whole eras of the capitalist mode of production (this is of course not just a metaphor) should be understood under sweepingly simple code-words, but, unfolding better explanations by deploying such code-words as efforts to get us to think differently and in detail is of great use. And the corresponding tactical 1,2,3-step is also helpful, even if ’tis not the whole struggle – so having Plan C post this is very welcome, even for those times when I am neither miserable, bored, nor anxious (‘he’s behind you’ – the pantomime reflex).
Not anxious, but I am amazed, often variously amazed – even at the idea of posting this:
“Today’s public secret is that everyone is anxious. Anxiety has spread from its previous localised locations (such as sexuality) to the whole of the social field. All forms…
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Provoked by Parliament’s steadfast commitment to a Plan A of Austerity, the rusty machinery of the Trades Union Congress has provided the customary opposition in the form of its Plan B: marching for the alternative, marching for jobs, growth and justice, and now marching for a pay rise. We think it’s important that we join our fellow workers on 18 October, but we do so critical of the TUC, its politics and its innocuous demand. In short, we need a Plan C.The march on 18 October will be the biggest national mobilisation of the working class in two years. This is something the TUC is relatively good at – which is reasonable to expect given its immense budget. However, this is also an organisation which has joined forces with the Confederation of Business and Industry (CBI) in backing workfare programmes, and which increasingly appears interested in only engaging with – let alone fighting for – only a narrow subset of workers. Within the formal work economy, employment is increasingly casualised, while ‘informal’ work such as care – which is equally crucial to the generation of profit – remains as marginalised as ever within the TUC’s chauvinistic and rigid workerism.
The demand for a pay rise seems to be more closely tied to legitimising Labour’s new policy for an £8 minimum wage than creating a movement to challenge and transform the present reality of working class existence in Britain. Labour’s plan for a pay rise – 26p per hour on top of the existing minimum wage by 2020 – is an insult. It’s a grand plan to remunerate the increasingly impoverished and growing working poor with less than the price of a bag of crisps. The TUC’s support for such a policy is an embarrassment.
Throughout the week of the 13 October, we will be joining the national strikes and picket lines in the run up to the demonstration. One-day stop work actions obviously have their limitations, but any hope we have of strike action becoming more general and widespread means we must engage, participate and make connections. We have launched #strikeup to collect reflections, dreams and counter-narratives of what work and striking could look like in the future, and we encourage others to strike up similar conversations on their local picket lines. We will then join the march on 18 October, standing with our fellow workers while strongly critical of the TUC’s complicity.
A pay rise is not enough. We demand the ability to live without overwhelming insecurity. We demand to work with flexibility and on our own terms. We demand an end to the double burden of unremunerated care work. We demand an end to sexism and racism in the workplace. We demand a movement that does not limit itself to pay rises but one which dreams of a world beyond work. We demand a Plan C.