Vote Lutte ouvrière so that the working class can be heard!

Lutte Ouvrière workplace newsletter
May 27, 2024

After having sent his Prime Minister, Gabriel Attal, to confront Bardella, the Rassemblement National’s (RN)1 lead candidate, in a debate, Macron proposed to debate with Le Pen himself. As we get closer to the European elections on June 9, Macron and his supporters are seeking to mobilize their electorate by presenting themselves, yet again, as the only defense against the far right. But ever since Macron came to power, he has been reinforcing the RN, not weakening it – particularly by using the same demagoguery against migrants, the unemployed, young people living in the suburbs, immigrant workers, etc.

As for the RN, it is seeking to capitalize on the working class’s rejection of Macron and presents itself as the only party that has never governed. But it is doing everything it can to prove to the bourgeoisie that it is just as capable of serving its interests as the parties that have already been in power.

The RN and Macron’s party are vying for the right to manage the affairs of the capitalist class and therefore for the power to launch attacks against the working class. While Bardella and Le Pen advocate putting in place trade barriers at France’s borders in the name of “economic patriotism” Macron and Attal talk about doing exactly the same thing only at Europe’s borders. But that sort of protectionism, be it national or European, would only ever protect the interests of big companies and their profits, not jobs.

At no point do Macron-Attal or Bardella-Le Pen address the issue of layoffs, companies closing down or the concrete problems workers face. They have nothing to say about faster work paces, longer commutes in public transportation, low-paying and unstable job contracts, low wages or small pensions. None of these politicians consider using up the huge profits that have been accumulated through the exploitation of workers by the Arnault, Mulliez, Dassault and Peugeot families. They don’t because they all bow down to the power and wealth of these big bourgeois families, who are the real masters of society.

Le Pen’s party is a far-right movement led by a millionaire family and composed of people who are nostalgic of General Pétain2 and supporters of colonialism, both in the past, like in Algeria, and in the present, like in New Caledonia. But if the number of RN votes is on the rise in working-class neighborhoods, it’s primarily the Socialist Party’s and the Communist Party’s fault. Those two parties, which claimed to be on the workers’ side, betrayed and sickened them every time they came to power as they faithfully served the interests of the capitalists by pursuing policies against the working class. And by likewise spreading the poison of nationalism within the working class, they lowered workers’ class consciousness and their awareness that their interests are completely opposed to those of the bourgeoisie, paving the way for the RN.

Workers, we mustn’t listen to demagogues who want to divide the working class by scapegoating immigrants and to drag us into a war among the poor! Those who spew their hatred of foreigners or Muslims in the media aren’t the ones who build apartment buildings, maintain the roads, or run the hospitals; our social class does, workers and laborers from around the world do.

Our enemies are the capitalists, the bankers and shareholders – a minority of parasites to all of society. More than ever, they are getting richer through their trade war which is bleeding the planet dry and pitting peoples against each other.

Elections won’t change our lives but they can allow us to express ourselves. The list “Lutte ouvrière – le camp des travailleurs”, led by Nathalie Arthaud and Jean-Pierre Mercier, is made up of factory workers, employees, technicians, railroad workers, teachers… During this electoral campaign, we want to affirm that the workers who know how to run society must lead it! “Workers of the world, unite!”: we want to make that slogan heard, because Marx’s message, the motto of the revolutionary working-class movement, is so vital today.

Voting for Lutte ouvrière’s list on June 9 is a way of proudly affirming our confidence in the working class’s ability to overthrow capitalism, this crisis-ridden and war-mongering system, and to build a society free of borders, exploitation, and all forms of oppression.

Nathalie Arthaud

1 Rassemblement national (RN) is a nationalist, far-right party in France. Jordan Bardella became the acting president after Marine Le Pen in November 2022.

2 General Pétain became the head of an authoritarian regime based in Vichy (southeast France) in collaboration with Nazi Germany, from 1940 to 1944, during World War II.