Friday, 13 August 2010

Organise! Aims and Principles

Who We Are

Organise! is a working class organisation. We seek to secure for all workers a full and equal share of the wealth and social benefits created by the combined labour of our class. We aim for the abolition of all hierarchy, and work for the creation of a world-wide classless society: libertarian communism.
To achieve this revolutionary change in society, and to better organise ourselves in our struggle against the bosses, we are striving towards the creation of a new, revolutionary workers organisation – the anarcho-syndicalist union.

Against Capitalism, Exploitation and Oppression

We are fighting to abolish the state, capitalism and wage slavery and to replace them with workers’ control of our industries and communities, ensuring production and distribution for need not profit. To achieve our goal we must relinquish power over each other on a personal as well as a political level.
We are opposed to capitalism; a system based on the exploitation of the working class by the ruling class. By working class we mean the vast majority of humanity who are forced to sell their labour or survive on the pittance offered them by the welfare state.
Organise! is opposed to patriarchal and gender oppression, recognising that hierarchical notions of male domination in the family and beyond have imposed the oppression of females as well as males. This domination has been reinforced by organised religion hand in hand with bourgeois democracy and capitalism. Capitalism uses the “traditional” oppression of women to divide the working class.
We believe that fighting racism must be part and parcel of the class struggle. Libertarian-Communism cannot be achieved while racism still exists. In order to be effective in their struggle against their oppression both within society and within the working class people of various ethnic backgrounds may at times need to organise independently. However, this should be as working class people, cross-class movements attempt to hide real differences and achieve little for the working class.
Inequality and exploitation are also expressed in terms of sexuality, health, ability and age, among others, and sections of the working class can engage in the oppression of others along these lines. This divides us, undermining class unity in struggle, to the benefit of the bosses. Oppressed groups are strengthened by autonomous action that challenges social and economic power relationships.

The Trades Unions and Workplace and Community Resistance

Organise! believes that trade unions cannot be used as vehicles of revolutionary change. After year upon year of attacks on our class both the Irish and British based trade unions continue to offer no strategies for effective resistance. Based on ‘social partnership’ and top down hierarchical control of their membership trade unions have clearly become more and more divorced from the immense potential strength of workers at the point of production. The point of production, the workplace, is where we are exploited as labourers – it is also where we can, collectively as workers, strike back against the employers.
We reject social partnership between union leaders, bosses and government. In these ‘partnerships’ it is always the working classes that suffer. While rejecting the trade unions as beyond reform we will continue to be active in them at a ‘shop-floor’ level to fight for working class interests at work. We will however be promoting workplace resistance not standing in union elections on so-called ‘radical’ platforms.
In building towards a new anarcho-syndicalist union Organise! promote solidarity unionism that seeks to build maximum solidarity among workers across sectional and trades barriers and between different working-class communities. At its most basic solidarity unionism is the building of networks of practical support and resistance. It is on this basis that a new, revolutionary, labour movement can be built. In industries where workers are not unionised, or in cases where workers have reached the end of their patience with the ‘reformist’ trades union movement, we will together to create anarcho-syndicalist unions. As a precursor to this Organise! are establishing industrial branches and networks in a number of industries. Different unions, branches and networks should federate locally, regionally and internationally with other similar unions making our struggles more and more effective. They must promote methods of working class activity, which enable us to use all the means at our disposal in the struggle against the bosses.


We are opposed to the ideology of nationalism and national liberation movements, which claim that there is some common interest between native bosses and the working class in face of foreign domination.
We are opposed to all forms of nationalism, be that the British nationalism of Loyalism and Unionism, Irish nationalism or the Ulster nationalist current evident within Loyalism. All have as central to their ideology the nationalist myth that people in an arbitrarily drawn up nation (be it based on an island, region, language, ‘culture’, or religion, or any combination of these or other elements), have common interests which can be represented by the nation state. The nation state is in effect the government over the majority, the working class, by the wealthy few. The working class and those who hold power, the bosses and their lackeys, have no common interests.
We do support working class struggles against racism, genocide, ethnocide and political and economic colonialism. We oppose the creation of any new ruling class. We reject all forms of nationalism, as they only serve to redefine divisions in the international working class. The working class has no country and national boundaries must be eliminated.

Capitalism and the Environment

Organise! recognises the appalling effects of capitalism on the natural environment, and believes this is the natural result of a system which treats both workers, and the planet, as something to be exploited and disposed of at will. We believe that access to a sustainable lifestyle is not a luxury for the wealthy, but something urgent and important that must be extended to the mass of the working people. Sustainable communities cannot arise as a result of reforming capitalism, nor can they be imposed by the state. With this in mind, we demand rational and sustainable practices.

The State

Organise! rejects the notions of various ‘left-wing’ parties, the would-be ‘vanguards’ of the working class, that the state can be ‘conquered’ and used against the bosses. Government, no matter on whose behalf, has always rested on domination and exploitation, is an inherently repressive institution and as such beyond reform. The basic function of the state – that is the courts and prisons, the army and police, civil service and other state institutions – is to defend the interests of the bosses. Government is a top-down institution which puts power into the hands of a few. All efforts at creating a ‘worker’s state’ have only led to further oppression of the workers as those in power consolidated and strengthened their positions Government, no matter in whose name, no matter what jurisdictional boundaries it acts within, for instance UK, Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland, offers no alternative for our class.
We believe that the criminal justice system is a product of capitalist society and is an instrumental weapon in the subjugation of the working class. We recognise that this system is only interested in the defence of the state, private property and the interests of the bosses. We must organise to defend ourselves against it (and all kinds of anti-social behaviour, domestic and sexual violence etc) supporting its victims until such a time that it is no longer a threat to our class.

Direct Action and Revolution

We advocate the use of direct action both in and out of the workplace. Direct Action empowers and develops the confidence we need in our continuing struggle against the bosses. It is exactly what it says, any form of action taken directly to effect an outcome - carried out directly by those involved without recourse to professional intermediaries, politicians or managers of conflict. Direct Action demands decentralised control and should be participated in on an equal and direct democratic basis.
Genuine liberation can only come about through the revolutionary self-activity of the working class on a mass scale. A libertarian communist society means not only co-operation between equals, but active involvement in the shaping and creating of that society before, during and after the revolution. In times of upheaval and struggle, people will need to create revolutionary unions controlled by everyone in them. These unions must be outside the control of political parties, and within them we will learn many important lessons of self-activity.
These unions will strive, not only to win improvements within capitalism but, ultimately, to win the class war with the abolition of capitalism through the social general strike. The social general strike will mark the start of a truly social revolutionary transformation of society and the process of workers taking control of our land, factories, workplaces and communities.

Libertarian Communism

Organise! believes that the emancipation of the working class is the task of the working class themselves. As Anarcho-syndicalists we organise in all areas of life to try to advance the revolutionary process. We believe strong organisations are necessary to help us to this end. Unlike other so-called socialists or communists we do not want power or control for our organisation.
We recognise that the revolution can only be carried out directly by the working class. Libertarian Communism is the only road to real liberty and equality; setting mutual aid, direct democracy, workers control, federalism and solidarity against all forms of oppression, totalitarianism and centralising tendency.
The class struggle is being waged more and more aggressively by the bosses while the official labour movement sells us short, or sells us out, at every turn. We participate in the class struggle as libertarian communists and organise on a decentralised federative basis. We reject sectarianism and work towards a united libertarian and working class revolutionary movement.
At present it is the role of Organise! to promote solidarity unionism and contribute to the building of an anarcho-syndicalist union movement in Ireland and internationally. As such we are building links with similar organisations internationally.

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