III. The leadership of the proletariat
12. The crisis of leadership of the proletariat has been the decisive factor of the crisis which humanity has entered. In order to overcome this crisis of leadership, at the present time the question of reconstructing the leadership of the world working class comes to the forefront. A long period of time and the experience of several generations have passed since the vanguard of the working class could still speak in the name of a historical leadership of the revolutionary proletariat. The defeats suffered by the working class, from those which destroyed its organizations, to those political, and no less profound, has made itself manifest in a backward movement in the class consciousness of the masses; finally the defeat of the political revolutions has been brought about and, as a consequence of this, the disintegration of the worker states.
In the popular camp there has been a revival of petite-bourgeois nationalist tendencies in its most backward and even reactionary forms. The so-called traditional political organizations of the working class are found, in most cases, to be overrun by the bourgeoisie, including the imperialist bourgeoisie; the Stalinist parties have been painfully recycled into pro-imperialist democratism. There is no manifestation in the heart of the traditional organization of the irruption of the combative workers movements or of any real tendency that demands from within a "return to the historical origins." The organizations claiming to defend, in one way or another, the IV International, have succumbed to this step backwards in class consciousness and take on the role in most cases corresponding to the democratizing or nationalist petite-bourgeoisie. This occurs even where the defense of bourgeois democracy and of national identity are reactionary, as in the case of the imperialist powers. The long decades that have passed since the bankruptcy of Second International placed on the table the crisis of leadership of the international proletariat and since the founding of the III and IV International, have left a great temporary vacuum, that is, theoretically and organizationally, for the new generation of the proletariat. The reiteration, by some groups, to the effect that they represent revolutionary continuity, is nothing more than a petition of sectarian faith, which has served to hide diverse kinds of ideological degeneration. The subjective conditions for the reconstruction of the Workers International, whose most developed programmatic point is still condensed within the transitional program of the IV International, has suffered a considerable setback, which can only be overcome in the framework of the international class struggle taken as a whole which increasingly characterizes the stage now in course.
13. Since the mass demonstration of Seattle, in 1999, a great international movement of struggle against imperialism has been placed in evidence. This irruption constitutes one of the most noteworthy expressions of struggle in the present world crisis. The anti-globalization movement debuted denouncing "the dictatorship" of the organizations of international finance and commerce, but right away also motorized huge mass mobilizations against the imperialist war in the Balkans and in Iraq. Objectively, it has been a factor of popular intervention in the political crises that have affected the imperialist powers involved in the war.
Although the presence of working class youth predominates in the anti-globalization mobilizations, the proletariat does not intervene in it as a class, with consciousness as such, that is, with its banners, its demands or even with its organizations. When on some occasions the trade union bureaucracy appears, the aim is to drag the movement into the camp of imperialism. There is no doubt, however, that it constitutes a stage in the maturity of the current generation of workers.
The 'pluralism' alleged by the movement is no obstacle for the predominance within it of a perfectly organized political current which puts forward the regulation of finance capital and pacifism understood as a factor of pressure of 'public opinion', even pro-UN. Since within this current there participate, however, diverse tendencies, including the Unified Secretariat, the degree of its incoherencies is enormous. For example, it opposes agricultural free trade, alleging defense of the thinly sparsed French peasant, but supports free trade when it is proposed by the underdeveloped agricultural countries, managed by Cargill or Dreyfus. It denounces international organizations who are in charge of the regulation of capital but itself demands that regulation in order to confront the growing capitalist anarchy and even to put an end to poverty. It rejects 'globalization' in name of the defense of 'national identities,' but confronts nationalism, even of the oppressed nations, invoking the need for "another globalization." It is both "identitory" (tribal) as well as cosmopolitan and liberal (imperialist). It criticizes FTAA but defends Mercosur, which, dominated by the big corporations, has no other aims than those of serving as a bridge towards a trade alliance with the United States or Europe. Its international forums are more and more turning into podiums for the representatives of imperialism, especially European, and as a go-between for "dialog" with the 'forums' also held by the banks and big capital.
14. The pro-imperialist course of the PT of Brazil has been a huge political blow that the current defending the so-called capitalist anti-globalization has preferred to ignore. The prior experience of the African National Congress of Nelson Mandela, which governs on behalf of the big South African monopolies, is, however, defended by the leading tendency of the 'anti-global.' Bertinotti, another of its leading swords, is intent upon reaching an agreement for government with the imperialist Olivo. This current, which has re-baptized itself with the name of "another globalization," is internally incoherent even in its pacifism, since one sector invokes it in Iraq but not in the Balkans and only up to a certain point in Afghanistan. It proposes to combat the violence of war with pacific methods, but above all as a 'pluralistic' movement of opinion incapable of transforming itself at all into a factor of combat and as an alternative to the imperialist governments that drive the war.
The 'alterglobal' characterizes itself as movementist ('movement of movements'), that is, as opposing the building of an international party, especially a class struggle one. That is, it lacks a proposal of power and avoids the means to struggle for power and combats them fiercely. Functionally it benefits established capitalist power. It confesses, in this way, to refusing to play an independent role in the world crisis and that it will not be able to intervene in it except empirically or circumstantially. The "alterglobal" is determined in its denial of the possibility of revolutionary situations born of the decomposition of capital. It denounces the attempts to convert them into revolutions and into the historical path towards the taking of power by the working class. Its "Trotskyist" wing (USec) adds, from its own harvest, that the world revolutionary epoch initiated with the Revolution of October has concluded. This posing of the question comes from Euro-communism, in 1970, and before it from the theory of "socialism in one country." However, even in a period of capitalist restoration, of backward movements in class consciousness and of the loss of historical gains whose achievement marked a long epoch of the world proletariat, the insurmountable contradictions of capital lead to the creation of revolutionary situations, which can only be resolved in a favorable manner for the working class if they are transformed into proletarian revolutions and in the context of the taking of power by the workers and for the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat on the world plane.
15. The experience in government of the PT marks the fatal bankruptcy of all the political currents that continue to defend the Forum of San Pablo. The Forum of San Pablo has become the principal factor of containment of the struggles of the workers and of political demoralization of those in struggle. In Brazil, it has formed the government having the greatest concentration of direct capitalist representatives in the whole history of the country. In the recent Bolivian revolutionary crisis it played a decisive role in order to channel the existing leadership towards accepting a constitutional solution, and has even been transformed into a direct link between Evo Morales and imperialism. It has not even taken a position of unconditional defense of the government of Chávez in Venezuela, on the contrary it has been the vehicle for the 'mediation' of imperialism in the Venezuelan crisis. Going beyond even the Argentine government, that of Brazil is to be found in the front lines of the military occupation of Haiti. What is occurring with the PT repeats what has occurred with the former guerrilla fronts or former Stalinist parties in Central America, especially the FSLN, in Nicaragua, and the FMLN, in El Salvador.
The destiny of the Brazilian PT confirms the pro-imperialist nature of the professional petite-bourgeoisie that has passed over from foquism to democratism, on the one hand, and the potentially counterrevolutionary character of the bureaucracy formed in the trade unions, on the other. From the programmatic point of view, it places in evidence the pro-imperialist character of the democratizing proposals, that is, which postulate the possibility of social progress within the constitutional frameworks of the oppressed countries, that is, those who through an absence of national independence and of internal capitalist development have not conquered the historic premises of democracy.
The PT has transformed itself into a party worthy of the total confidence of the bourgeoisie and imperialism after a prolonged period of integration of its cadres and bureaucracy into the State, which was covered cosmetically by the theory in fashion, as an expression of a "great capacity for political construction." The political participation of the democratizing left in the institutions of the capitalist State has once again been revealed as a powerful factor of political degeneration. The parliamentary and municipal participation of the Partido Obrero , ever since the Constituent [Assembly] of Santa Cruz in 1995 and the 2001 elections in Salta and in Buenos Aires, has served the revolutionary utilization of the institutions of the state and the revolutionary development of consciousness and organization.
The political bankruptcy of the PT has given rise to a process of differentiation within the democratizing left, one up till now of reduced scope. It is not a socialist differentiation, either, because it does not criticize the democratizing programmatic foundations or the opportunistic political conditioning with gave birth to the PT (to displace the workers mass struggle to the electoral arena and to organize the proletariat within the framework of 'institutional normalization' initiated by the dictatorship of that time). Also absent in this differentiation is the comprehension of the potentially revolutionary character of the situation as a whole in Brazil. The leadership of the PT adjudicates as a fundamental aim of its rise to the government the avoidance of a revolutionary situation which might bring about a financial bankruptcy. That is, to combat the 'danger' of an 'argentinazo,' which it later saw confirmed in Bolivia.
In the political crisis provoked in the Latin American left and in the workers movement by the pro-imperialist government of the PT (and which will have a new edition in the government of the Frente Amplio in Uruguay) we promote the construction of revolutionary workers parties, on the one hand through the implacable criticism of democratism or nationalist anti-imperialism of bourgeois content, and on the other by developing agitation in the working class and the masses, especially among the most exploited, such as the unemployed and the landless peasants, on the basis of a program of immediate fundamental and transitional demands. In the face of the experience of the PT and the Chavez bourgeois governments, in Latin America, we demand the expulsion of the capitalist ministers from the governments headed by the left; the breaking of all ties with the IMF and the repudiation of the foreign debt; the nationalization of the bank, of the big monopolies and of the land, under workers control; the confrontation of capitalist sabotage through the occupation of plants and factories and workers administration; the replacement of the armed organizations of the bourgeoisie by the armed organizations of the workers and peasants; and a continental action of struggle for the Socialist United States of Latin America.