Argentina: Palace disputes and decadence of the regime. The left is the alternative

By Alejandro Bodart, MST-FITU and ISL leadership

The latest ruling of the Court opened a strong crisis in the country’s political regime and the institutions. A regime that tramples even the rules of this capitalist “democracy” and the supposed division of powers. Always at the service of a decadent semi-colonial capitalism, in a system in crisis worldwide, which they unload on the backs of workers and peoples.

In this context, Cristina spoke again after her conviction for allegations of corruption. She attacked the Court and the “Judicial Party,” denouncing an alleged persecution to discipline the government and the PJ. It sounds serious, but it is a narrative to justify the very real austerity of these past three years. Because the PJ governed during 70% of the last 39 years, and it never considered transforming this biased and classist judiciary that is servile to whoever is in power. Something that only we on the left raise.

Overcoming every narrative of justification

As Cristina recounted the supposed achievements of her government, she could not help but acknowledge the current “dissatisfaction,” though she speaks as if she were not the vice president. In parallel, the dollar was breaking records in a devaluation run that only benefits the IMF, bankers, agribusiness and employers to further degrade wages and pensions. Only we on the left propose ending this financial scam, recovering the value of the currency, nationalizing the banks and improving social income.

Because they already apply austerity with the inflation tax and two pieces of information are enough to see the level of the robbery of workers and middle sectors: the holiday basket increased an average of 129% (with increases from 152% to 154% in sweet bread, roasted nuts and sparkling wine, 116% in cider and 108% in fruitless cake). While lodging in the coast, for a family to attempt to have a vacation, went up 200%.

At the same time, far from the best salaries that Cristina spoke of, during her government together with Massa, the IMF and governors like Kicillof, salaries continued walking up the stairs and prices taking the elevator. According to the INDEC index, the average income of wage earners is $83,310 and $45,981 in the informal sector, with an average 10% year-on-year drop in purchasing power. Social justice? I owe you.

That is why the left is advancing, as we are the only ones fighting for a general increase in wages, pensions and social plans so that no one earns less than the family basket. Supporting each conflict, such as those of the tire workers, the nurses and health professionals, the piquetero unity and the teachers, who manage to overcome the union bureaucracy of the PJ and start winning victories. The left grows and strengthens fighting together with each anti-bureaucratic and class activist, for a new democratic union model, for the struggle and independent of governments and the bosses.

Consumption in the red and social catastrophe

This austerity in people’s pockets explains why retail sales fell 3.2% in October and accumulated a fourth month of decline. Mass consumption collapsed 11% in supermarkets of up to 500 m², the strongest drop in 17 months. Wholesale sales fell 7.1%, the worst drop in 38 months. That is why the left has a hearing, for being the only ones proposing to apply the austerity on the price markers, eliminating the VAT from the family basket, opening company books, lowering prices and putting them under social control to cut inflation.

Thus, the balance sheet of three years of “popular government” is dramatic, with indicators worse than those of the Macrist catastrophe. With the highest inflation in 31 years: today at 100%, compared to the 53.8% left by Macri. While poverty was then 39.8% and indigence 8.4%, leaving a trail of 16 million poor people, poverty has now climbed to 43.1%, with 18 million poor and 3.3 million indigents. A true social catastrophe.

For the wealth we produce to not be kept by four people and the IMF, only the left proposes austerity for those at the top, not letting another dollar go to the debt scam and imposing progressive taxes on the rich.

If Macri, Bullrich, Larreta, Milei or Espert run amok asking for more austerity and repression, if they threaten to condemn this government based on a servile justice, it is because the Front of All opened the door for them, by applying a large part of the right’s agenda. The background of the fight above over the co-participation of state funds reflects a bad social mood that is growing and calls into question the entire capitalist political caste, with the “they must all go” ghost hovering like a sword of Damocles.

Dare to change with the left

The PJ is going through a historical structural decline by not resolving social demands and breaking all its promises. They justify themselves by saying that they are what is “possible” and the “lesser evil” against the reactionary right. But with Massa and the IMF, the right is already in power, with the endorsement of Cristina and the Kirchenrists.

Cristina says she will not run and Massa, Scioli, Wado de Pedro, a trusted man of the vice president, but also of the corporations, the US embassy and agribusiness, sound like candidates. Nothing new will come from them, just the overused tale of “fighting from within” the PJ.

With the authority of having alerted those who bet on the PJ in 2019 that those expectations of reversing the Macrist disaster would be frustrated, we call for transforming that disillusion into a decision to change for real. There is no reason to swallow pride voting right wingers. It is possible to take a step forward, positively and not as a punishment. Dare to change and do something new with the left. Because we do not resign flags and fight accordingly.

As we expressed in the recent letter to those who voted for this government expecting something different and today feel disappointed, but yearn for a just and egalitarian society, we call on you to move forward with us, the MST and the FIT Unity. Because, in the face of so much right, more and better left is needed.