Mon May 27, 2024
May 27, 2024

It is Possible to Defeat Milei, Macri, and the IMF’s Plan

By PSTU-Argentina

The setback of the Omnibus Law and the subsequent scuffle with the governors due to the conflict in Chubut revealed the weakness of Javier Milei’s government in terms of carrying out its plan fully. But this dispute among the powerful is more a fight for the distribution of the cake than a dispute about the plan itself. The CAME, which groups together the bosses belonging to the SMEs and the Rural Society, went to the Courts to request a ruling in favor of the labor chapter of the Government’s Necessity and Urgency Decree (NUD).

The rift between Mauricio Macri and Milei, which seemed to have opened after the failed merger of Milei’s LLA (Freedom Advances) and Macri’s PRO (Republican Proposal), still shows signs of being alive. And although the “friendly” regional governments defend their own interests (for instances, provincial budgets, so they don’t have to put out fires), they are willing to dialogue with the government.

Meanwhile, Milei is still using his “chainsaw” to apply brutal fiscal cuts to budgets for workers and the people: layoffs and suspensions have been added to the increases in the costs of food and services. The UOCRA (the construction workers’union) has talked of 150,000 layoffs in the sector. The operation of public universities is also in danger due to budgetary suffocation. Milei plans to move forward with collective bargaining agreements according to what he said at the opening of Congress.

The 10 points of his proposed May Pact are nothing more than the reaffirmation of the Washington Consensus, the basis of all the neoliberal plans of the 1990s in Latin America. The plan was not applied fully in Argentina, so it is the wish of the bosses that it now be fully carried out.

Workers of the Chubut Province Lead the Way

The oil strike called in Chubut resulted in mobilizations of other sectors on both the provincial and national levels. It ushered in a new series of workers’ mobilizations in which fishermen, dock workers, electric energy workers, state workers, and others converged. Today, Luz y Fuerza (electric energy workers) and SUPA (dock workers) are still participating in the struggle.

Although Ignacio “Nacho” Torres of PRO and governor of Chubut has been at the forefront of the mobilization, he is part of the restructuring plan and is ready to negotiate with Milei. Those who built up the energy and intensification of the struggle, and made the money appear were the workers themselves with their mobilization. They showed that it is possible to twist the government’s hand,  and take advantage of the cracks that have opened up in its plan.

Along with the people of Chubut, railroad workers, health workers, and teachers came out in support of the struggle. Now, the UOM (metal workers’ union) has joined forces with those already mobilizing. But the CGT refuses to unite all these demands. The closed-sectoral bargaining agreements are serving to divide workers instead of unite them in their shared struggle. They are the leadership’s excuse to demobilize workers, even when the loss of wages exceeds gains that have been made, and workers continue to be gravely affected by the government’s plan.

That is why a National Strike is necessary to unify the demands—starting with salaries but to oppose the overall plan: the defense of the right to education, health, culture, and against continuing to hand over our country and our resources to multinationals and foreign powers.

We, too, demand that the CGT set a date for the strike. We must begin to prepare this measure from below, by forming factory-based committees to organize the best comrades. The neighborhood assemblies have to go out to organize their neighborhoods and discuss with the people who join the necessary demands to overthrow this plan.

Difficult problems must be confronted the right measures. We cannot be satisfied with actions that do not go to the root of the problem. We have to prepare actions in the ports, depots, and refineries of the main national and foreign companies. The only way to win if by affecting production and the profit of capital.

We Need an Alternative Plan

It is worth asking: What comes next if Milei’s plan is defeated?

Our country is rich in resources. While hunger has become one of the defining features of this government, our country used to be “the breadbasket of the world,” able to feed the equivalent of ten times its population. Today, the owners of the country are the millionaire owners of the multinationals, in association with their local business partners, plus politicians of one stripe or another, depending on the occasion. The Patagonian governors, for example, will meet on the April 7 with proposals to adapt to the adjustment, which is why they are proposing the creation of a mixed oil company, etc.

We workers need our own emergency economic plan. As the statement by the PSTU Chubut has pointed out: it is not enough to “turn off the tap.” We must expropriate the main companies. We workers must become owners of the wealth we generate, by expropriating the resources, the factories, and the banks. We must use those resources to develop science, medicine, and culture. We must guarantee housing and food for all working families. This is the only way to guarantee a dignified life for our families.

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