Introducing the Political Resolution
by Anna Pha A government of a new type After an exhaustive six-month process of discussions, additions and amendments the Political Resolution was adopted with overwhelming support by Congress delegates. The Political Resolution offers analysis of current developments and a series of policies appropriate for Australia. It calls for the establishment of a government of a new type that would legislate in the interests of the people. The Political Resolution is one of three key documents guiding the Party and its members in their work. The other documents are the Constitution which specifies the aims of the CPA and its organisational and ideological basis and the Party's Program. Compared with the Program, the Political Resolution is a more immediate document dealing in particular with the period between Congresses which are held every four years. After the initial draft of the Resolution was distributed to all Party members in October 2000, Party branches held discussions on the document, with every member having the opportunity to submit amendments. Presenting the Political Resolution to the Congress, CC Executive member Anna Pha explained how the Political Resolution is the collective work of the Party, the collective of ideas, experiences, of learning and application of all members. While the fundamental exploitative nature of capitalism remains, Ms Pha said the Resolution identified the continuing important changes that the Party must respond to: * the continuing contradictions of capitalism; * the rapid concentration of capital into fewer and fewer giant corporations; * the continuing shift towards economic rationalist policies; * the increasing exercise of power by the IMF (International Monetary Fund), World Bank, and WTO (World Trade Organisation) over the affairs of sovereign nations; * the increasing attacks on workers of all countries; * the adoption of extremely right-wing and conservative social and moral attitudes, including increasing religious fundamentalism; * the emergence of the environment as a vital issue. Ms Pha quoted Lenin's 1916 characterisation of imperialism: "Imperialism is capitalism at that stage of development at which the dominance of monopolies and finance capital is established: in which the export of capital has acquired pronounced importance..." Ms Pha reported that the export of capital has now reached astronomical proportions. The total Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), which is a measure of the export of capital, rose by 900 per cent to A$35 trillion in the period 1982 to 1999. In discussing the increase in the export of capital, the Resolution makes the important point that, " ... the majority of this [foreign] investment has been in the form of mergers and take-overs, rather than in the creation of new enterprises..." These developments are not without their consequences as the Political Resolution points out: "The process of globalisation is used increasingly to subordinate national governments to the dictates of transnational corporations. It has brought significant changes to the state apparatus, parts of which are being privatised and brought under the direct control of the transnational corporations." While government regulation of the corporate sector is being reduced to a minimum: "the repressive role of the state is being increased" and "the democratic rights of the people are being whittled away by the increasingly open dictatorship of the TNCs — politically, economically and militarily." The extension and consolidation of the dictatorship of capital inevitably means that the democratic rights won over centuries are whittled away. Changes to electoral laws, anti-trade union legislation, intensified surveillance on streets and workplaces, increased police powers (and privatisation of policing), legislation enabling the use of the military in civil matters, harassment of welfare recipients and the brutal treatment of asylum seekers were all evidence of this. All these developments taken together dramatically reveal the "evil face of capitalism and imperialism" as the Political Resolution says. "It is now easier to identify the real face of those who are a roadblock to human progress and real freedom". However, as the global assault of the TNCs intensifies, so too grows the struggle by the working people and other sections of society against them. Some important features of this struggle to note are: * the internationalisation of the struggle against capital in line with the internationalisation of capital; * the development of alliances, coalitions, fronts and other forms of broad unity; * the adoption of new forms of struggle that are increasingly directed against capitalism itself; * the regeneration of communist parties in many countries and the growing links between them. The Resolution says: "There is now a vast world wide force that can be mobilised globally. It is now possible to conduct campaigns on a scale previously inconceivable and with greater and more telling effect." The CPA promotes the formation of anti-imperialist fronts and other united actions which mobilise left and progressive forces. However the Resolution warns that while they are participating in the resistance, "working class and revolutionary parties must retain their independence and ideological integrity". The Resolution puts forward a number of immediate policies that are relevant to the struggles of today. These include: opposition to privatisation; support for the public ownership of key industries; trade union and workers' rights; job creation, women's, farmers' and youth rights; price controls; repeal of the GST; reduction in military budgets; multiculturalism; and indigenous rights. These proposals represent a possible program for a government of a new type. Other organisations in any coalition will also have their own policy proposals to contribute. "The new government must be prepared to mobilise the people and win support for, assist implement and safeguard changes which are in the interests of the people and which challenge the power of capital", says the Resolution. During that process we must continue to build the Party and carry out our ideological work. It is the task of the Party to raise class and revolutionary consciousness during the many struggles that lie ahead so that they are taken forward from the reforms of the first stage to the revolutionary — socialist — stage. Concluding, Ms Pha said, "As a result of the discussion and amendments we have now a vastly improved and enriched document. "It will be up to every one of us to take the final Political Resolution back to our work and ensure the maximum unity around its implementation."