Our global situation should be understood not only in terms of a resurgent radical politics, but also in terms of depoliticization.
Was it a coup? Yes. Should people with a preference for emancipatory politics support the coup or oppose it? We can only be against it. When we move from definitions and position-taking to the level of politics, however, simplicity gives way to murkiness. How did this coup happen? What conditions made it possible?
The uprising of the YVs (Yellow Vests or the “mouvement des gilets jaunes”) and its persistent tenacity mark a point of no return. In our opinion, there is a before and an after the YVs. At least in Europe and in terms of class struggle.
As a counterpoint to this historical amnesia, conformism, and seclusion, Gambino offers an important corrective: a serious consideration of working conditions irreducibly requires workers themselves, who possess the capacity to modify this terrain (or irrevocably alter it), as much as they are shaped or subordinated by it.
What even the repression in Italy could not cancel was how seriously the so-called “workerists” took the whole dimension of human activity. That was an aspect of what made the extraparliamentary left in Italy different. It already contained, at least in embryo, the claims about who has produced what, who commands what, and who destroys what.
What would it mean to implement a Green New Deal? The question is not, what balance of forces would we need (as though we were playing some kind of board game). Not, what policies would we need – we already have truck-loads of plans and proposals. But what would the result of a Green New Deal be?
As we have seen written on the walls these days, “they will never again have the comfort of our silence,” because we are not willing to back to occupying that place of private silence, of silent submission. In that sense the broken glass, of real estate or the metrobus, etc. do not have, in any way, the same value as our lives. The meaning that we are putting up for debate here is the value of life.
Not even a year into the Bolsonaro experience, it is still early to try to map the country’s varied fronts of resistance. But what follows provides at least some initial elements, touching on education, political scandal, the labor movement, feminist and black liberation fronts, state repression, tactical and strategic debates on the Left, the overweening legacy of the PT, and the meaning of fires in the Amazon.
What that July 2016 call would quickly unleash was something no one anticipated: Saudi Arabia’s first feminist mass movement.
The movement in Switzerland was patiently constructed from below, in a capillary fashion, in connection with social movements and militant and trade union organizations, without renouncing the radical elements of its program. This is undoubtedly one of the keys to its success, manifest on the evening of the 14th of June.