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ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Grèce  : leurs mesures visent 
à réduire le prix du travail

by Eliseos Vagenas

Greece: their measures aim at 
reducing the price of labor

Translated Saturday 8 May 2010, by Hervé Fuyet and reviewed by Henry Crapo

Interview with

Eliseos Vagenas, member of the Central Committee and head of the International Affairs Section of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE).

L’Humanité: What is your strategy to counter the adoption of the extreme austerity plan imposed by the UE and the IMF.

Eliseos Vagenas:
The action taken by the government of PASOK (Social Democrats) is a form of war to crush the working people, a war that will drive a large part of the "lower" classes to an even wider impoverishment, with a dramatic reduction in their income and reduction of what remains of their rights to social security and protection by labor laws. These measures focus on two areas: a) Further reducing the price of the labor force to ensure that the capitalists will have cheap labor.
b) Find capital, through loans that the Greek people will pay again and again, to fund and support the banks, industrialists and shipowners. But they will face a powerful wave of popular resistance and struggle. What is important for us, Communists, is that the struggle against anti-people actions creates conditions for contest, rupture and the overthrow of the capitalist system of exploitation.

Eliseos Vagenas:
Our party believes that Lenin was right when he wrote in 1915 in his article "On the Slogan for a United States of Europe"
http://www.marxists.org/archive/len..., that such a union would be impossible, or reactionary. Indeed, the European Economic Community (EEC) and then the European Union (EU), with the Maastricht Treaty
(All parties voted for it in Greece except the KKE), have proved to be a union of capital, which aims to attack workers’ rights and preserve the profits of the capitalists! One of its tools is also the European Central Bank. We are not supposed to cultivate the illusion among workers that the imperialist nature of the EU can change. Still less so than that we can put "people before profits." In reality, what matters is to create a system where there will be no capitalist profits! That is why our Party insisted on our country leaving NATO and the EU and calls for the establishment in Greece of a front of struggle for people power, an economy for people, and socialism.

Eliseos Vagenas:
KKE proposes specific measures in the current crisis of capitalism. Measures that aim to relieve the workers and the unemployed : taxation of big capital with a tax of 45% instead of 20% today. We offer a complete set of revendications based on the needs of modern workers. But in the capitalist system, there may be some victories obtainable only through the development of class struggle. We constantly strive for immediate victories and we will continue to struggle for measures that will be imposed by the power of the Movement, measures that reduce the severity of problems, and bring a relief to the working people. We support the Pame union front, which includes all class unions of Greece. In addition, we present openly to the people our alternative proposal, that of an economy of socialization of the means of production, central planning and worker’s control , with a fully public health system, with a system of education, health and Social Security, which will be unified and free for all. An economy that is based on another power which will overthrow the power of monopolies and build new people’s institutions.


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